Monday, September 15, 2008

Re-Striking Pandora in the Kiln

I tried my experiment of re-striking the pale Pandora beads in the kiln (see my previous post). It kind of worked! 'Kind of' because only two out of the three beads got more color.

The beads told me that they would have preferred to be struck properly during the first go-round in the kiln to get the best color, yet they patiently endured a second hot night in the kiln and did their best to make the colors I wanted.

Here are the three pale beads from yesterday:Pale Pandora Test Beadsand here they are today:Re-struck Pandora Test BeadsI could have put them in the same order to make it easier to see, but the bead on the left in the first picture is the same bead as the one on the right in the second picture. That's the one that didn't get color. The other two got more blues and purples and very closely match the colorful five beads that struck properly the first night.

Also, when I re-struck the three beads in the second kiln run, I raised the temperature from a 940(F.) garage to a 950 garage and anneal. I let them sit in the kiln for 8 hours at 950. I thought all of them would re-strike, but two out of three ain't bad.

My verdict is that it's better to get the beads to strike right the first time, and if one attempts a re-strike, don't bank on the results. Maybe it's just because these beads are encased. Exposed Pandora probably re-strikes easier. I must say I'm happy with my two out of three though, because it's like taking what would have been an orphan bead and making it into a good bead!

Everyone has a different kiln and kiln environment, so my advice might not be worth a thing to you! Your best bet is to try Pandora and see what works best for you. And, if you end up hating Pandora and you can't get it to do a thing, don't throw it at the wall - sell it to me!!!

Good luck everyone!


rosebud101 said...

I've got to try pandora. You make it look so easy! Thanks for your visual experimentations.

Karolen said...

I hope you do give Pandora a try. In the past I've had a very hard time learning to strike the silver glasses like Luna, Terra, etc. It seems to take weeks or months of practice. I went through over a quarter pound of Terra before I got a single color besides brown.

When Pandora came out I was hesitant to buy YET ANOTHER striking silver glass because they have such a steep learning curve. I was very surprised at how easily I could work with Pandora. On the first day the beads came out nice. How unusual is that?!