It is as easy to spot glass as to spot a human. The vast use of glass has resulted in increased production of glasswork tools. The art of glassmaking is three thousand years old. The tools used in making glass have evolved. These tools remain basic with each having their important role. The following are the tools used frequently in the glass blowing process.
’Block’ As Important Glass Work Tools
Block is a very important tool used in the initial process of glass blowing. It is used to make the surface smooth while shaping the molten form of glass in the desired shape. These blocks are made damp using water before it is used to inflate glass. This makes a layer of steam while using the block.
A spring-like handle is used to adjoining two strips of metal. This is how jacks are made. Jacks play an important role in the glasswork tools category. A glassworker uses both the handles following the shape of the glass required. This is done while the semi-solid glass is rotating. A glassworker shapes the glass using different angles of the jack handle. The angle is a deciding factor whether the product will be an open vessel or an inflated piece.
It is important to flatten the base of the glass vessel. The paddle is the perfect tool used in this process. A paddle generally consists of two wooden handles made from cherry wood. Constant exposure to hit glass makes the surface a little charred. Glassworker uses the help of their assistant here. The assistant uses the paddle as a shield to protect the glassworker from getting exposed to direct heat.
Glass Work Tools – Diamond Shear
Even glasses need minute cuts to shape them well. A diamond shear is used in cutting glass edges and shaping them the desired way. There are two types of glasswork tools available. A four-sided blade is preferred more than a two-sided blade diamond shear. It helps cut the more compact edge of the glass. This helps in leaving less cut marks made during the cutting of hit glass. The thick material of diamond shear proves to be one of the best glass work tools.
Growing demand for glass requires more innovation in its designs. A crimp is an effective tool for this purpose. A crimp consists of two flat pieces of iron joined using a metal piece. The insides of this end have different types of patterns made. This works as a decorative tool when used on a molten sheet of glass. A glassworker uses different patterns for different glass projects. When the hot molten glass is placed between these crimps, the outcome is a pure form of art.
Some other glasswork tools that are important in the glass blowing process are tweezers, puffer, taglia, pallet, and the like. The art of glassmaking has gone through years of transformation but the tools remain the same.