Ode to silicone

Yesterday, I wrote about making fused glass mushrooms. I thought I was done with the behind-the-scenes story. All of the components were made. I just needed to add a little clear silicone to attach the cap to the stem. Easy.

Except not easy. I created so much work for myself in the clean-up process.

Love it / hate it

I am of two minds when it comes to using silicone as a glass glue. I will outline the pros and cons.

Pros

  • Low toxicity – very important for me. I also work with gloves and good ventilation.
  • It is clear in the tube and dries clear. Extra important for glass.
  • It is strong. It also has some give, which is better than a non-flexible glue for the expected bumps.
  • it is readily available and low cost.
  • Easy to use (in theory!).

Cons

  • Messy – big con for me. I am hoping to improve my application skills.
  • Adheres well to glass (this is also a pro). The ‘con’ here is post-application clean-up. It took me forever to get the silicone off of the glass, and, as you can imagine, the sandblasted surfaces really held on extra tight.
Tiny silicone fruits of my labor

On a positive note

Yeahhh… this is all part of the experimentation and learning process. Next time will be better. Right? 😬(Hey DIYers who love using silicone -feel free to email me your tips!)

As if this wasn’t enough, I dropped a mushroom on the tile floor while cleaning it. The mushroom took most of the impact on the bottle stem, and it broke. But! Look! The silicone held it together post-impact. Wow. Not salvageable, but still cool.

And, I should add, the mushroom cap stayed tightly adhered!

This bottle is held together by silicone that I used on the inside for the glass ‘shelf’ for the light.
Bummer! I think I can refire it and repair the big chip, though.

I will say that the silicone is tough. I really had to pull to remove the chipped cap off of the bottle stem. I need to completely clean off this chipped blue cap before I can refire it, and it took forever!

The end?

Hopefully, this is the end to this little story. Enough of this silicone stuff. I am eager to get back to cutting and fusing glass!

Continued