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Reinforcement is necessary on larger windows. As a rule of thumb, a window more than three square feet should be reinforced. Either reinforcing bar or rod may be used for support. Be sure to consider this when designing the window so that the reinforcement does not intrude or compromise the design of the finished work. In either case the reinforcement is soldered to the back of the panel in one of two ways. The bar should be pre-tinned before use. You will solder the bar in several places at intersecting lines on the window. Rough the areas to be soldered on the bar with steel wool. Apply flux and coat the areas with solder. Doing this will make soldering the bar to the window much easier. Place the bar on edge and solder to the window in the predetermined areas.
When using rod, a length of pre-tinned wire is first soldered at several intersecting lines on the window where the rod will sit. The rod rests on the wire which is twisted around it. Apply a bit of solder to the twisted wire. Solder either end of the rod (or bar) to the edge came. In some cases the rod or bar extends on either side of the panel and is “buried” in the wood casing of the window to provide optimum security. The casing is notched where the bar will fit and filled over to disguise it.
Karina FosterFriday, February 8, 2019
@eugeneosentoski There isn't a one-size-fits-all answer to this question unfortunately. For large projects, a rigid (zinc, brass or copper) came border will add considerable support and strength to your art to help ensure it doesn't bow over time. For smaller projects, the came becomes less necessary, but still never a bad choice to include. The wood frame and installation strips will help support the project, and may be all that's needed for some smaller projects. I would encourage you to err on the side of longevity by installing a came border if there's any question.
Karina FosterFriday, February 8, 2019
@ for a 25-1/2" x 31-1/2" panel, reinforcement is usually recommended. This can be in the form of copper reinforcing strip or steel reinforcing strip run through the panel, or zinc rebar applied to the "back side" of the panel. When installing against and existing window, it is suggested that you leave a small space between the panels, and to complete the installation in a manner that won't trap any moisture. Because of this, many artists will use rebar to reinforce the panel, then position the panel so that the rebar is facing the existing window.
@eugeneosentoski You don't how large is the piece? Round? Square? Commercial frame or self-made? GENERALLY, you won't need extra reinforcing but it will depend on the size/shape of the piece and quality of the frame
I am making a copper foiled glass piece that will go into a wooden frame. I will mount the copper foiled glass with 1/4 inch strips of wood that will be tacked to the frame. Will it be necessary to add came around the edges for support or will the wooden sandwich of the frame and the 1/4 in strips be enough support? Thanks.
Karina FosterMonday, October 1, 2018
@dmz2241 There are several approaches you could take for adding a border to the mirror. Probably the most common approach would be to add a came or foil border to the mirror, then solder the border to it directly. This approach will work with most single or double strength mirror, but may not be as sturdy and effective if you're using a thicker mirror. To hang your mirror, you can solder jump rings, custom wire loops or Handy Hangers to the project at the top corners, or near the top on the back (where the mirror joins the border). While you could directly solder a length of wire to support the mirror, many people find using rings that can be directly placed on a hook, or used to attach a hanging wire give them more flexibility to ensure they're able to hang the project at the intended height.
I am making a 3 inch stained glass border around a 20 x 24 mirror. The border will have about 80 pieces of glass. Do I need support for the mirror? Also, what can I add to hang the mirror? Would copper wire soldered between mirror and frame hold it?
Karina FosterThursday, March 1, 2018
@ For a large panel, such as the 5' x 6' size you are working on, the project should be reinforced with rebar. Rebar should be installed horizontally from border to border and soldered to the artwork at each point it contacts a solder line and to the came border. Most artists find that installing the rebar so that it divides the panel into thirds approximately is the least visually distracting and provides adequate support. Zinc rebar
Karina FosterWednesday, October 18, 2017
@LeonJBeha a window of this size is in the gray-area of what sort of reinforcement may be necessary or appropriate. The 1/2" zinc border and fixed wood sash mount will do a considerable amount to help protect your art and keep it strong for years to come. If you want the peace of mind of knowing it's reinforced, you can absolutely add reinforcement. Your options are to use reinforcing strip, started at one edge of the panel, worked across to the other border by inserting it into the lead channel as you build up and out. It will meander, but by keeping a continuous strip it helps to disperse the weight. Another option is to use zinc rebar run across the 20" span attached at the borders and tacked at each point it crosses a lead line. If opting to use zinc rebar, most artists find it less visually distracting to install 2 pieces that visually break the artwork into thirds approximately.
I am making a 28 inch wide x 20 inch high leaded glass window. It will be exposed on the inside but will have a thermopane panel on the outside to protect it from the elements. It will have a 1/2 inch zinc channel around the perimeter and will be mounted in a fixed wood window sash. Do I need edge to edge reinforcing? If I do, since there are no straight lines all the way through the design, what do you recommend I use?
Karina FosterFriday, September 1, 2017
@Romykay Often the method of reinforcement is dictated by the design of your artwork. If the project is designed as a sun catcher with an irregular outside shape, then the most effective method of reinforcement may be to run a continuous strip of copper wire, braided wire or ball chain around the perimeter and solder it in to create a lovely thick solder bead on the outer edge.