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Old 04-10-2018, 07:43 AM
Rich Arentzen Rich Arentzen is offline
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Utter Disappointment with Corning Batch Company

3 Years ago Lewis Olsen of the Corning Batch Company sold me many tons of glass that produced a "Sick Glass" effect which revealed itself as an alkaline fog that was impossible to clean off. This cost me $80,000 in returned orders from my most important client. He failed to take any responsibility for his faulty product. I have given him 3 years to at least make a gesture towards compensating my loss. I would have been happy with a couple of pallets of a different formula. But nothing, even after many promises. Feel free to let him know what a shithead he has been to me.

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Old 04-10-2018, 08:46 AM
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Before this becomes an utter pile on, what steps have you taken to date to negotiate compensation with Lewis? Have you let him know you are going after him here?
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Old 04-10-2018, 10:35 AM
Rich Arentzen Rich Arentzen is offline
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I have asked him numerous times for some sort of meager compensation, and let's just say I have reason to believe that this is an appropriate response to how he thinks about the situation. I was discrete and gave him the benefit of the doubt for long enough. No need for piling on.
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Old 04-10-2018, 11:16 AM
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OK.
We have had some observations about fluorine being present in that mix and it had an effect like you describe. I think it was Eben who took note of it.

In reality, making a really solid structural glass is a difficult proposal. Everyone want this low melting stuff and wants it to be durable, high luster, noncorrosive and cheap all at the same time. We've seen how the reaction to the presence of Borax in glass causes almost universal reaction when it comes to American refractories. Fluorine will rack up a wire or Moly furnace in a heartbeat. There are only so many tricks in the glassmasters book if one is trying to make (ahem) cheap glass.
The formula I made that I like so much would be dissed by any of the stem makers because it has a higher viscosity than SP87. That said, it polishes far better and doesn't devitrify, a common complaint with people trying to cast with SP87, something Nick did not design it for. Color makers inn Germany are notorious for changes in the expansions. I continue to push for people to make their own glass bodies and I get dismissed as being a zealot. Then this sort of stuff comes along and one has to wonder where all the cullet mines were located in the 19th century.
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Old 04-10-2018, 12:14 PM
Josh Bernbaum Josh Bernbaum is offline
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I think now's as good a time as any for a class specifically on batching clear formulas. What ingredients do what and why, concentration parameters, sourcing materials, process, and a bit of safety too. I heard that in Peiser's class at Penland last summer, they started with the most basic glass, silica and sodium, then kept adding constituents to see the real world effects that each contributed to the resulting glass. Too bad everyone seems to be afraid of dust these days.
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Old 04-10-2018, 01:59 PM
Eben Horton Eben Horton is offline
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The pieces that I have left that are made from Corning batch are now 100% opaque. They were crystal clear sealed hollow spheres. Then over time they weeped and weeped what ever... soda?
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Old 04-10-2018, 02:00 PM
Eben Horton Eben Horton is offline
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There definitely was fluorine in that batch. It etched all of my windows opaque grey in the hotshop and even in my gallery.
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Last edited by Pete VanderLaan; 04-10-2018 at 02:34 PM. Reason: spelling changed the meaning
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Old 04-10-2018, 02:15 PM
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Glass can dissolve. It's the basis of the durability testing. I have an entire text by Volf on technical glasses and how they are designed to resist alkaline attack. You certainly can't put HF in a glass bottle. I'd be interested in what Rich made that failed.
Your closed spheres are not terribly different that what you might expect to see in a lot of glass bodies. I do think having more that .5 percent fluorine in a glass with a high alkaline content is dancing with the devil. Guess what? Most opaque color rod glasses have a good deal more than that, up to 6 percent. Some are higher.
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Old 04-10-2018, 02:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Eben Horton View Post
There defiantly was fluorine in that batch. It etched all of my windows opaque grey in the hotshop and even in my gallery.
*****
You might add that the ventilation was really poor.
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Old 04-10-2018, 04:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Josh Bernbaum View Post
I think now's as good a time as any for a class specifically on batching clear formulas. What ingredients do what and why, concentration parameters, sourcing materials, process, and a bit of safety too. I heard that in Peiser's class at Penland last summer, they started with the most basic glass, silica and sodium, then kept adding constituents to see the real world effects that each contributed to the resulting glass. Too bad everyone seems to be afraid of dust these days.
*****
I talked to Mark and here's what he said:

We did! We started with a water soluble glass- just silica and soda. Actually, I didn’t/can’t find, the records of what we melted, someone in the class was supposed to keep records. In terms of quantifying results, 50 yrs ago I built a “ cloud chamber”an acrylic cube about 13”, wherein samples were put, and then alternately heated water to mist the samples and then a heat/dry cycle began, and repeat. This thing ran continuously through the class and beginning with the “soluble” stuff,which began decomposing in an hour, the next glasses began etching pretty much as you’d predict. There were no numbers. We started by adding Ca, then Sr, then Ba and somehow got to B2O3 and Al2O3 and whatever. The class was into it just by checking the erosion of samples, but mostly by gathering bits and such of the melts and feeling differences. I do believe they got that. The feedback from the students was good. It was a one week class- God knows what I would have done if it was longer.
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Old 04-10-2018, 06:14 PM
Josh Bernbaum Josh Bernbaum is offline
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I hope he teaches one more time, I'm sorry I missed that last class.
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Old 04-10-2018, 07:21 PM
Cecil McKenzie Cecil McKenzie is offline
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Rich.... Do you think that this effect is "crizzling" which can be caused by too much alkali in the glass formula? I found a wiki article about" crizzling" that explains some things about its cause and mentions some ways to diminish the effects. Although diminishing the effect is probably the last thing on your mind
and is probably meant for museums that want to conserve their old pieces that have this problem,
,http://www.conservation-wiki.com/wiki/Crizzling
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Old 04-14-2018, 06:16 AM
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This is similar to problems we had with Spectrum 96, mainly in ornaments. Last year we went through our inventory from the previous season and tossed about half of them due to partial or complete opacities or crystal stuff forming inside. With Gaffer moving to the USA, will they be bringing their cullet production here I wonder?
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Old 04-14-2018, 06:39 AM
Eben Horton Eben Horton is offline
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For what it’s worth, spruce pine 87 with erbium will occasionally but very rarely yield a little soda bloom on the inside of a sealed bubble. It’s very rare though.
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Old 04-14-2018, 11:22 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pringle Teetor View Post
This is similar to problems we had with Spectrum 96, mainly in ornaments. Last year we went through our inventory from the previous season and tossed about half of them due to partial or complete opacities or crystal stuff forming inside. With Gaffer moving to the USA, will they be bringing their cullet production here I wonder?
******
Gaffer doesn't make cullet.
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Old 04-14-2018, 09:10 PM
Charles Friedman Charles Friedman is offline
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Rich I have a question, about how long did it take to see the fogging effect on your glass?
I have had problems in the past, with bad material that was made for production use. Clay and glass can have problems when not mixed correctly or with bad raw materials to start with. When ever I had a problem with my suppliers and made a complaint, there stock answer was "test before going on line, that is standard production procedure." With that said upfront first, there was no court that would listen. You are just out of luck, the lawyers would say. Sorry for your loss.
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Old 04-15-2018, 07:16 AM
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To add to that, Expecting any product to be able to do lots of different things is really unrealistic. Spruce Pine is a reasonable and well liked blowing glass but it is a very poor choice for casting due to devitrification. It isn't a great polishing glass but seems OK until you use a really great one.That great polishing glass sucks for stemware and it's baked into the cake. Rich still hasn't indicated what the glass pieces were but anytime glass is sealed shut you should expect troubles.
Glassblowers just want so many attributes. Low Melt, easy working no cords, no bubbles, high clarity. Yet they use generic inexpensive products off the shelf and expect perfection.
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Old 04-16-2018, 08:08 AM
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Senility has set in. Does Gaffer make a batch? Maybe that’s what I was thinking.
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Old 04-16-2018, 08:11 AM
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Gaffer indeed does have a batch. It is mixed at Spruce Pine and can be ordered from them. I don't know the cost but it's not out of line.
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Old 04-16-2018, 08:26 AM
Rich Arentzen Rich Arentzen is offline
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It took a couple of weeks for the glass to reveal itself to be faulty. It was a greasy alkaline fog on both sides of open vessels that would seemingly wipe off but then reappear very quickly. I accept that mistakes can be made by vendors, but in my experience, most people take responsibility for them. I do not think that my expectations for a stable glass or vendor accountability are unrealistic. I certainly get that from most vendors in the glass world.

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Old 04-16-2018, 09:04 AM
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Having supplied a description of the stuff, I would indeed agree with you that it's a glass experiencing serious soda bloom at the least. In that light, if that is factual, I would agree that you are entitled to have that material replaced. It does help if the problem is really explained and not left to be speculated on.

It remains the case that closed and sealed pieces will usually exhibit the same sort of dissolution. I am surprised that Lewis was not receptive to complaints if he did know the circumstances.

When Mark Peiser did his class at Penland, he amply demonstrated how glass dissolves if poorly engineered in only five days.

I continue to view SP87, East bay batch, GLASMA and Gaffer as reliable formulations for studio work depending on what you want to make. Even then, each glass will have it's issues.
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Old 04-16-2018, 11:24 AM
Josh Bernbaum Josh Bernbaum is offline
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When I was doing some fluorine melts a while back, I made some murrini with it. While later using that murrini in some pieces, I had noticed that the inside of the clear (Spruce Pine) "plunger" with which the murrini was picked up looked "foggy" after a couple reheats. It was to be waste-glass, so I didn't really care, and figured that was the off-gassing fluorine in a confined space that was responsible. Just mentioning this to wonder if what little bit of fluorine they put in that Corning stuff is the only culprit, and maybe not due a lack of enough stabilizers in the mix? From everything I'm hearing, fluorine or borax in a batch (or cullet) just seem like bad ideas unless they're absolutely necessary.
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Old 04-16-2018, 12:30 PM
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borax was at one time the go-to way to lower melt temps without affecting expansion much, the sodium and the boron offsetting each other to some degree.
Keep in mind that low melt clear is a relatively new product. Earlier cullets from Gabbert, Keystone, Louis, were genuine factory waste and not a boutique thing. I think the first boutiques kicked in around 2002.
The first boutique cullet I recall was the sys96, a child of Uroboros and Spectrum claiming low melt characteristics and offering idiot proof compatibility. While Uroboros was pretty much interested in a fusing glass that match colors well, so they could compete with Bullseye in the "Clock in Santa's Belly" set. The glass did gain usage in studios and pretty soon was heavily used and things began to dissolve. Spectrum really pushed that product since the net being cast got so much bigger as studios dumbed down in search of easy melts. . Some of us (lots actually) began to complain about the solvency. It just ate everything.

Fluorine on the other hand is another way to lower melt temps. I use it in my clear actually but the percent is tiny. I have a half pound calcium fluoride in 80 lbs of batch. No borax at all. I rely on nitrates which are kind of pricey. . SP uses a touch of fluorspar as well. It strikes me that it should take a good deal more fluorine than that to get dissolution going. I would agree that if the stabilizers are low, that would exacerbate that problem . In the fluxes, most of these glasses push the alkaline content right to 18 percent. There are ways you can go way beyond that 18% number but it involves a lot of alumina. It's really more applicable in Enamels where the silica content is below 50%.
I have never thought boutique cullet to be a good idea. SP87 is simply a decent clear formula melted, cooled and sold, an interesting carbon footprint. SP 87 batch makes the most sense to me unless you have specific needs in your clear. GLASMA is certainly more brilliant, but testy.
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Old 04-16-2018, 01:24 PM
Dan Vanantwerp Dan Vanantwerp is offline
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No borax?

Hi Pete. Surprised your clear batch has no borax.

The "Pete's unoxided" formula has about ...adding antimony and Potassium nitrate to make the clear. I thought this was your clear when you refer to it.

I realize you have several formulas from which you use and likely continue to tweak those. Just wondering if the calcium fluoride is a recent modification and what led you there.
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Old 04-16-2018, 03:14 PM
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I run two formulas. The oxidized clear has no borax,. The unoxidized does. Since I can't run nitrates in the unoxidized color base, and I already have a small amount of fluorine in it, I have no choice if I want to keep the viscosities in line with the expansions unless I was to use Lithium which is expensive and corrosive. The two are quite different but the capacity of the unoxidized delivering rich color given the high potassium content is unparralleled.
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