60/40 solder, flux, soldering iron and stand, wet sponge for cleaning tip, Q-tips or cheap brush to apply the flux and heat resistant gloves.
Optional: bricks or similar to hold your glass vertical.
1. Tinning the front and back edges"Tinning" means covering the copper foil with solder.
Apply flux and tin the top face with a thin layer of solder
- Paint the liquid flux over the edge with the Q-tip. Be generous with it, too little flux will stop the solder sticking
- Tin the top face of your edge.
- To do this simply add a few blobs of solder to the foil and melt it along the top edge with the soldering iron.
- Turn your piece over and do the same to the back face.
- Don't worry about the solder spilling over the sides, you'll use that in a minute.
Tin second side and start soldering the edge
2. Beading the edge
Beading means creating a rounded edge with the solder.
The secret with edges is to keep moving your stained glass so that the area you're working on stays as horizontal as possible. This stops the solder running off or flattening out.
- Put your heat resistant glove on, or prop your stained glass up between two bricks
- Join the blobs that are already on the edge by heating them with the iron
- Move slowly along, holding and lifting, making sure that the solder is rounded as you go
- Turn the panel as you go so that the piece you're working on stays horizontal
A soldered beaded edge
You can always practice on small scrap pieces of foiled stained glass before you start 'for real'. By the end you will have a neat rounded edge and sides.
Glass with rounded soldered edge
Wipe the flux off with a damp towel, but don't worry too much about making it perfectly clean now. There's the hooks to attach before you get to the polishing stage.
This guy is a genius. The whole how to do stained glass video is 13 minutes and I'd highly recommend watching it all. If you haven't got time, go straight to 7mins 25 secs and the soldering edges sequence lasts one minute.
Great idea to bend the solder up like that and take a little bit from the top. Inspirational.
Now you've soldered your edge, you're ready for the next step, Attaching Hooks.
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