Disaster!!!

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Jeff Umsted
Posts: 37
Joined: Fri Apr 09, 2004 9:55 pm
Location: Lapeer Mi.

Disaster!!!

Post by Jeff Umsted » Sun Aug 01, 2004 6:41 pm

Disaster!!!!

With all things in life there are highs and lows. Today was a low for me. I had just finished, and i mean just finished, cleaning my first real sign (glass). It was gorgeous! I had set it in the window to see what it looked like with the light beaming through it and was getting ready to take a picture. My wife and I stared at it for a while and I went outside to see what it looked like. My wife went out threw the back door and as she shut the door I turned around just in time to see the glass fall out of the window. I ran in as did my wife only to see a huge mess of broken glass on the living room floor.!

The glass was 24 inch by 48 inch 1/4 inch thick. As I said before this was my first real one. I had a friends aunt cut out a vinyl stencil for the lay out ( United Cigar Stores) and had It glue chipped. I was gonna leave it as it was for now and finish it with gold and paint at a much later date. My goal was to have 4 or 5 different signs completed and use them as a test for the local market. Well I guess I will be one short for demo purposes. Rats!!

Stuff happens! I am bummed about it and bummed about the $100. bucks into it now gone. Live and learn I guess! Just a reminder about the strength and fragileness of glass and life also. Thanks for letting me vent and please use this as a reminder to be extra careful when dealing with glass!!

Jeff Umsted
Jeff Umsted
Lapeer, Michigan

Robare M. Novou
Posts: 415
Joined: Thu May 06, 2004 11:18 am
Location: Milwaukee
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Glass Disaster

Post by Robare M. Novou » Sun Aug 01, 2004 10:33 pm

I feel your pane!

I purchased a piece of curved (slumped) glass for $200 at the local glass dealer. It was about the same size as yours, It was the wrong size for the customer that was to buy it originally. So there it sat for 2 years, until I showed up, and purchased it.

Got it to my shop, laid it on the shop table, and thought to myself that I should put it somewhere else, someplace where it will not get broken. So I stood it up over by my desk just behind and to the side of my chair. Went to eat, came back and sat down in the chair, rolled my chair back to get a book from the shelve, rolled back to the desk....heard a whoosing sound behind me, followed by a keeee-rash of breaking glass. It was so surreal, like in slow motion. The glass, being under bent preasure exploded like a bomb. I'm still picking shards of glass out of the carpet.

I was so mad and sad at the same time. I just about cryed. Took me weeks to get over it.

A few months later a clock dealer I know gave me a piece of curved (slumped) glass from a grandfather clock....I keep that piece well stored away from anything and anyone.

You put a lot of work into yours...and thats gotta hurt more than just breaking a piece not worked on.


RMN

Jill Marie Welsh
Posts: 29
Joined: Sat Jun 19, 2004 9:40 am
Location: Butler, PA USA

Post by Jill Marie Welsh » Mon Aug 02, 2004 5:49 am

:(
That is just so terrible!
If I understand correctly, this was a "practice" piece for you and not for a customer, so there is no rush in replacing it, which I suppose is one positive thing.
And think of all you learned by making it.
Please don't let this deter you from future glass work.

I love glass pieces, but when God gave me artistic talent,
he also dumped in a healthy glob of clumsiness.
Many is the time when I have propped up a sign to take a photo,
only to have the wind knock it down, etc.
And it does seem to happen in slow motion!
Keep on learning and trying new things!
I feel for both of you.
Love...Jill

Billy Pickett
Posts: 115
Joined: Mon Aug 02, 2004 11:59 am

Post by Billy Pickett » Mon Aug 02, 2004 12:09 pm

...At least you did not have more time in it. I've had (a couple of) 'em break around the 3/4 completion point. As my glass pieces progress, I start to get more and more nervous when handleing them.

...I know the possibility of (total) failure is a given w. glass work, but it's the devil. ...Something that took SO LONG to make, and required SO MUCH concerted thought and intensely discliplined labor, and looks SO BEAUTIFUL when it's done... can just destruct SO QUICKLY!

Jeff Umsted
Posts: 37
Joined: Fri Apr 09, 2004 9:55 pm
Location: Lapeer Mi.

Post by Jeff Umsted » Mon Aug 02, 2004 5:21 pm

Thanks for the kind words and the stories too. I was so nervous the whole time making it and so careful .....six mins after I declared it done.....pieces...lots of little pieces! Ha HA I love this stuff!!

I have been trying to find the good out of the situation and me thinks that at least the first one is under my belt!!!! Done and smashed in the same day, is that a record?? Lol. Yes Bob, it did destruct quickly but in a slowish motion kinda way!:wink:

Thanks again guys! I have another chipping as i type. never deterred just patient, persistent, and meticulous.

Jeff Umsted
Jeff Umsted
Lapeer, Michigan

Mike Jackson
Site Admin
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Post by Mike Jackson » Mon Aug 02, 2004 6:44 pm

Jeff,
While these words don't help much, let me offer them...

When working with glass, there are two kinds of craftsmen: Those who have broken a precious piece, and those who will.

You are in with good company.
Mike Jackson / co-administrator
Golden Era Studios
Vintage Ornamental Clip art
Jackson Hole, WY

Photography site:
Teton Images
Jackson Hole photography blog:
Best of the Tetons

Jeff Umsted
Posts: 37
Joined: Fri Apr 09, 2004 9:55 pm
Location: Lapeer Mi.

Post by Jeff Umsted » Mon Aug 02, 2004 9:24 pm

LOL!!! Thanks Mike!
Jeff Umsted
Lapeer, Michigan

oatis
Posts: 62
Joined: Sun Jun 27, 2004 12:33 am

Post by oatis » Thu Aug 05, 2004 10:49 pm

Join the club, Jeff!

You are now a member of the true fraternity. It seems like the ones you break are in direct proportion to how much heart and soul you've got tied up in 'em.

Rose and I were two weeks deep into our large Tivoli beer piece in 1985...A Six by Eight-foot lunker--and 3/8" thick, too. We blasted deep (complicated design, natch) then laid 'er down on the floor to do the chipping. The glass was inside its carrier frame, though much too big to easily put on a table. Anyhow, It just kept on NOT CHIPPING, and I was getting impatient, and the deadline was coming on hard, and I decided that maybe some kind of movement might help--like if the glass expanded and contracted. It was ninety degrees in the shop, so I went and bought some DRY ICE (I can't believe I'm admitting this) and applied it real scientifically to select stubborn areas...

So O.K. I DESERVED my break. Yours was a much less bone- headed accident.

Good luck in turning out some beautiful work. You definitely will! Attach some photos.

Yours, Mark Oatis

Mike Jackson
Site Admin
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Post by Mike Jackson » Thu Aug 05, 2004 11:51 pm

Hi Mark,
Funny thing...I was thinking of your Tivoli piece when I posted my words of "wisdom". The one that finally got installed was a wonderful piece.
Mike Jackson / co-administrator
Golden Era Studios
Vintage Ornamental Clip art
Jackson Hole, WY

Photography site:
Teton Images
Jackson Hole photography blog:
Best of the Tetons

Danny Baronian
Site Admin
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Post by Danny Baronian » Fri Aug 06, 2004 1:34 am

It's still hard to grasp the scale since the glass is another 6 feet behind the railing.

Image

Image

Beautiful work! Those at Tiveoli that day spent a lot of time studying the many details that went into it's production, and more than a few rolls of film to record the 'field trip'.

Can you imagine having this forum with it's resources and combined talent available back then?
Danny Baronian
Baronian Mfg.
CNC Routing & Fabrication
http://www.baronian.com

Dan Seese
Posts: 311
Joined: Tue Apr 13, 2004 11:29 pm
Location: Fort Collins, CO
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Post by Dan Seese » Fri Aug 06, 2004 8:45 am

Jeff,
Your experience refreshes my repressed memories.
In '98 I was working on a window sign for Cache LaPoudre Rifleworks. It was a project where I screen printed the black line art on the windows and then applied the gold leaf, pearl, pictorial etc. Decided since I had the screen I'd buy a nice big piece of glass and do it at the same time to keep as a show piece.
I dadoed some 2 x 4's and built a nice snug frame for it. Fairly deep into the project we had some moist weather here. (Colorado is usually pretty dry) Well, the boards decided to warp, the glass decided not to warp and you can guess who won the argument.
Unfortunately, Mike's maxim about 2 kinds of glass artists is true. The positive side of it is that, early on, you are have crossed into the category of those who have already broken a precious piece. It can only get better!

Larry White
Posts: 1140
Joined: Thu Apr 08, 2004 4:18 am

WOW...

Post by Larry White » Fri Aug 06, 2004 10:50 am

Hey thanks for posting the pictures of the Trivoli piece! I have often admired it in the gold leaf techniques book, but never fully realized the size of it! It is impressive!

.... True, the dry ice method is a bad idea, but so is putting one section of the glass under a hot light. ...doink, time to start over.

...oh the gut wrenching pain...I remember it. I dumped an elaborate sign onto the floor as I was just finished painting the background. It was carved, etched, chipped, gilded, painted, abalone inlay. One second lookin' sweet...the next...shock...

I hope I don't have to relive that ever again... I did learn something though. ...if you jig up your glass, best make sure it's good and secure.
Larry White
That's enough for now... it's gettin' late
Town Of Machine
http://www.walljewelry.com

Doug Bernhardt
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Joined: Fri Apr 09, 2004 9:29 am
Location: Ottawa Canada
Contact:

Post by Doug Bernhardt » Sat Aug 07, 2004 8:13 pm

I have a horror story too...was on the last leg of a big job...carved pieces....painted pieces and 2 glass pieces. One was a little over 5'x5' and was the first to get started. Was in '01 as I remember and was getting ready for a week off to LA and a little meet at Dave McDonalds just up the coast. There were some stubborn pieces of glue that just would not chip....it didn't help that it was a humid summer, so I decided to bring in some heat lamps. They were good with the exception of one tiny little area...so I moved the lamps a little closer. This was late on a Saturday and was working some distance away when I heard a strange creaking sound....naturally I walked into the gilding room just in time to watch a crack slowly (it took a minute or 3) to go from one side of the glass to the other. Once it started there was no stopping it and I still have an angel gilded corner in the shop to remind me of the lessons that, and and a few other days, taught me about glass!

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