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Art Freas 09-04-2020 10:59 AM

The other strange thing to me is when I mentioned sweeping compound at my shop nobody knew what I was talking about.

Shawn Everette 09-04-2020 12:46 PM

I had someone blast plaster off their pieces, then try to blame when they were told they had to clean it up. Video evidence is a great thing. If all I'm dealing with is myself, I'm inclined to take on more hazards materials. Otherwise I plan that the dumbest person may enter the room at any moment.

Eben Horton 09-04-2020 01:49 PM


Originally Posted by Art Freas (Post 148705)
This is where it is different working for yourself and by yourself. What ever you personally believe is irrelevant when you are an employer. The regulatory folks have their view and their view isn't optional.

100% true.

Pete VanderLaan 09-04-2020 03:06 PM

I had seven employees.

Pete VanderLaan 09-04-2020 04:29 PM


Originally Posted by Art Freas (Post 148706)
The other strange thing to me is when I mentioned sweeping compound at my shop nobody knew what I was talking about.

You and your employees may just really like it. Absolutely dustless and it absorbs an amazing amount of material solids as well. It will work extremely well on a smooth floor, not so hot on a rough broom finish.
You can buy it from Graingers in 50lb boxes. It's not particularly expensive.

As to regulators, My worst experience was with a guy who quit his job and took that to the state when he wanted the job back finding he couldn't collect unemployment if he wasn't fired. He was continually turned down and continually appealed. Finally he went to work for a woman who paid him under the table while he continued to claim he couldn't find a job, keeping his appeal open. I warned her to stop and she didn't so a state IRS audit followed. It was ugly. There were no upshots for me that were bad. I was simply honest about it.

Josh Bernbaum 09-05-2020 11:16 AM


Originally Posted by Eben Horton (Post 148702)
about a year or 2 ago I switched to SP batch’s small bag option and will never go back to the 50 lb bags again. It really eliminated just about all dust issues.

I tried melting a few of the paper-bagged SP that a friend (Ed Branson), a glassblower in western MA let me try out to see if I liked it. I noticed that every bag seemed to contain a solid 'brick' of material. I'm not sure if that's characteristic of what you are getting in bagged-form Eben, or just the consistency of what Ed had at the time, but I ended up having to take those bricks out of the bags and break it up with a metal implement and charge the powder after that, because I thought it was safe to say that wouldn't make great quality glass (at least in my just adequately-powered moly). I didn't order any from SP that way based on that experience. I love SP's product otherwise, so don't get me wrong, I'm not trying to bad mouth anything. I normally melt their regular pelletized batch, which I feel to be much less dusty than the powdered batches I mix for my homemade color melts. I also wouldn't want to melt un-pelletized in a furnace without a flue, because that one time melting the powder removed from those bags in my electric, I found that to be extra dusty and just shooting right out the door at my (albeit masked) face. With the homemade color mixes in my gas unit, the dust doesn't seem to be a noticeable issue for me. And that's often times dust that's much more concerning to be around than dust that's coming from just a plain clear batch. I also think most studios could be less worried about dust from pelletized, clear batch and worry more about their ventilation systems, which could probably be improved upon.

Pete VanderLaan 09-05-2020 12:53 PM

One of the old time contributors here referred to SP as "Randomly pelletized bags" which seems pretty funny to me. You might check in with Ed to see how old those bags were and where they were stored. I get mine done as "Snowflake which has a lot less water in the mix but I don't find it to be dusty compared to what I mix up for myself.
Bags are a real problem in moly's. They settle in with you wrapped around the elements seemingly forever. In my classes, the reason I used bags was for precision placement in the furnaces. The pots virtually were touching each other and over shooting was not a good plan. The bags were in the ladle. I don't use bags at all on my own. I ladle it in, I run the vents, I close the door.

It's really rare for me to see adequate ventilation. Santa Fe was great. Chocorua is not as great.

Eben Horton 09-05-2020 04:54 PM

Not once have I ever had a “brick”. I load them in through the door of my furnace on my pastorale fork real quick before the bag ignites and I just drop it into the center of the pot. It naturally flattens out into a nice mound.

I store my batch in my blowing room where the climate is nice and warm and dry. I think Ed keeps his batch in another side of his barn which might be a little “dank”. I really love his studio

Richard Huntrods 09-05-2020 05:52 PM

My last order of batch came via Ontario - I split a ton with someone there. I don't know the history of the bags, but mine all came as solid rocks.

I tried dropping them several times from about 3ft and that breaks it up into mostly manageable bits. It's a blend of powder and chunks, but some chunks were really big (like 2in to 4in blocks).

At first I tried using a hammer to reduce the chunks to smaller sizes, but that just got really messy.

Now, I just feed it all into my wire melter pot. I put 4in chunks in when the pot is empty and work back to the remaining powder when I'm near the top. Using my standard melting schedule, it's been working perfectly.

Pete VanderLaan 09-05-2020 06:23 PM

Spend more, get my stuff.

Richard Huntrods 09-05-2020 09:20 PM


Originally Posted by Pete VanderLaan (Post 148727)
Spend more, get my stuff.

I'd love to. The biggest problem at the moment is that buying anything from the US is beyond bad.

The courier companies gouge you at the border, sometimes 40% of the value of the goods.

The mail goes to the customs inspection sites and just sits for 30 days in a large basket because the capacity isn't there (amazon parcel quantity has gone up astronomically)

I bought my last 1/2 skid only because a glassblower in Ontario only wanted half a skid and brought it across the border. Shipping from Ont to Van. Island was still big, just not as big as trying to get it from the US.

So yea, if I can figure out a way to get 1/2 skid on Vancouver Island for reasonable shipping cost I would.

Pringle Teetor 09-06-2020 10:24 AM

Does anyone have the number on the bad batch? We spent 2 months trying to get the stuff to fine out and gave up.


Originally Posted by Eben Horton (Post 148649)
There was a bad batch of Bomma sent over here and it drove a lot of glassblowers nuts because it wouldn’t fine out. I suspect you have some of that batch if you are having troubles

Pete VanderLaan 09-06-2020 12:33 PM

You just seem to have the plagues of JOB when it comes to getting bubbles out of things. I had never heard of any bad batch issue with BOMMA but I did find Charlie Parriot in what I would call less than a forthcoming mood whenever I've talked to him about it. Does the cullet have bubbles in it to begin with?

I don't know why it is so seemingly difficult. SP87 made a fine cullet as far as it goes but had the failure of the furnace as an issue. There are commercial furnaces out of South Korea that will handily melt a ton a day without issues for about 50K. The work appears to be ladling it out to turn into the cullet. Now, after two years it seems like the problem has not resolved. You still can't make money on it given the current pricing and that's dangerous.

Art Freas 09-06-2020 08:20 PM

Pringle, that is so strange. I will check my bag dates this week. They are from 2019, I think from Oct 19. I did have some seed challenges when we first loaded the pot from cold. Will filled it cold and then brought it up slow, then topped it up. Doing it again I wouldn't load as much at first. would load slower in small layers. We used to load once a week but now we do it a little most nights just keeping it at our working temp of 2150 (with a side thermocouple). After the first load they eventually worked out but it just doesn't respond to a squeeze the same as the cristalica or Spectrum Sys 96.

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