Glass - cutting, quality, supplier.

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Helen
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Glass - cutting, quality, supplier.

Post by Helen » Tue 05 Jan, 2021 10:19 pm

I'm framing on a modest scale in my cabin workshop at home. When I began I had good results cutting glass with a hand cutter and straight edge and felt entirely confident doing so. I buy 2mm float glass from Wessex pictures and use a, fairly new, Toyo TC-17 cutter (with a drop of oil in the handle).
However, recent results have been variable, the failures are becoming expensive and I'm rapidly losing confidence.

Is it possible that some glass can have invisible flaws which may adversely affect cutting? Is there any specific brand of glass that is of superior quality and can anyone advise on purchase of glass from general suppliers rather than framing suppliers?

I'm not doing anything different from when I started but would be grateful for any useful cutting tips and /or advice.

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Re: Glass - cutting, quality, supplier.

Post by Rainbow » Wed 06 Jan, 2021 12:17 am

Hi Helen

Funnily enough I've had exactly the same crisis of confidence, and I've posted on here a couple of times about glass cutting - see these threads for some helpful suggestions:

https://www.theframersforum.com/viewtop ... ss#p138076

https://www.theframersforum.com/viewtop ... ss#p128208

Is it always the same problem that happens?

I did get my confidence (and skill!) back, and fingers crossed it will be the same for you too :)

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Re: Glass - cutting, quality, supplier.

Post by Not your average framer » Wed 06 Jan, 2021 9:02 am

How cold is your glass before you try to cut it? I can't give you any figures that are confirmed by anyone else, but I have a thermometer in my shop and glass does cut cut properly below about +10 begrees centigrade and it is damaging to the glass cutting wheel. During most winters, I've needed to replace the glass cutting wheel on my Keencut System 4000. I've now got a Fletcher Terry 3100, but it will probably not be very different with that as I think that the problem is caused by the temperature of the glass.

My building is very hard to heat and maintain the temperature and is far from economical to heat around the clock. The building is at least 400 years old and is bitterly cold in the mornings this time of year and takes most of the day to heat the glass enough to cut well. My glass rack has enough capacity for about 35 sheets of glass and the temperature of that quantity of glass takes a very long time to warm up. I have an electric heater as near the glass rack as I can get it.
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Re: Glass - cutting, quality, supplier.

Post by vintage frames » Wed 06 Jan, 2021 10:07 am

I agree with Mark. It could be that the temperature is making the glass too brittle to cut successfully.
A simple remedy would be to pass a hair-dryer or hot air gun over the area you're going to cut beforehand. Also make sure the glass is clean and dry before you cut. In cold temperatures you can get a fine film of condensation that might not be so easy to spot.
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Re: Glass - cutting, quality, supplier.

Post by JonathanB » Wed 06 Jan, 2021 10:16 am

Sounds like a temperature issue - I have a well insulated workshop where I cut glass but have to store it in a separate unheated area. I always bring it in for a good 30 minutes before I need to cut it and this makes a big difference. I cut on an Excalibur which has two benefits - glass cutting is easier and you save a lot of space in a small workshop. This was the biggest single investment I made and I've never regretted it. You quite often see good used Excaliburs and Fletcher Terry cutters advertised here and it might be a good thing to try and work towards. Good luck!
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Re: Glass - cutting, quality, supplier.

Post by Justintime » Wed 06 Jan, 2021 12:25 pm

We have just had an experiment with this. A friend brought in a piece of 6mm glass for me to cut for him, straight from his cold shed. First cut was hopeless, a few minutes with a hairdryer and it cut perfectly.

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Re: Glass - cutting, quality, supplier.

Post by Steve N » Wed 06 Jan, 2021 1:25 pm

Could be a case of low temperature and how the glass is stored, so unless the glass is supported over the whole area, even if on a slant, if not the glass will bow and bend, setting up stresses in the glass, which will effect the scoring and cutting of glass, I have a glass rack which is the same size as the sheets, it slopes back towards the wall for support, but the whole sheet is supported
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Re: Glass - cutting, quality, supplier.

Post by Not your average framer » Wed 06 Jan, 2021 2:16 pm

I have the same and it is set at an ideal height for tansfering each sheet of glass straight down on to the wall mouted glass cutter, which has it horizontal channel for the glass running partly directly in front of the glass rack. After dropping the sheet of glass down by about 25mm this glass slide straight in to the glass cutter. Easy peasy!
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Re: Glass - cutting, quality, supplier.

Post by Helen » Wed 06 Jan, 2021 3:24 pm

Wow, many thanks for a lot of useful info. I had no idea that temperature could affect cutting and my uncut sheets of glass stand upright against the cold, timber wall in the cabin. I'll get the white spirit from the garage, will get a Wessex T square and scrutinise the wheel on my cutter which, I fear, may be damaged from abuse. Cleaning prior to cutting is another new concept & will remember to do so in future.

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