Cleaning the Beads

I love seeing the difference between a batch of beads straight out of the kiln to when they are cleaned and sorted.  Here is yesterday’s batch of beads; this is what they look like after the kiln has cooled.  The white substance is bead release.  It is used to keep the glass from adhering to the stainless steel mandrels.

Lampwork Beads on Mandrels

Lampwork Beads on Mandrels

After I remove the beads from the mandrels, I place them in a little container of water and clean them with my Dremel rotary hand tool and a diamond BeaDreamer.   I give them a soaking in a second container of fresh water.

Here is the pile of beads after they have been cleaned and rinsed:

Lampwork Beads Drying

Lampwork Beads Drying

They are starting to look better.  I dry them on a paper towel (that I let dry out every time if you can believe that) on top of a kid’s T-Shirt.  This T-Shirt was one of my favorite shirts belonging to my youngest daughter.  That daughter is now 11; I just knew that I would find a use for this shirt someday…

Here is where I let the beads dry completely – in a reused egg carton.  Of course, they dry faster when I don’t spill water into the carton (black and aqua beads in second row).

Lampwork Bead Drying in an Egg Carton

Lampwork Bead Drying in an Egg Carton


About rosemarie h.

engineer by day - artist by night View all posts by rosemarie h.

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