Silver Lining - WarmGlass.com

Silver Lining

This is the main board for discussing general techniques, tools, and processes for fusing, slumping, and related kiln-forming activities.

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Sandpiper
Posts: 42
Joined: Tue Apr 29, 2003 8:19 am
Location: Madison, Ohio
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Silver Lining

Postby Sandpiper » Fri Feb 13, 2004 11:10 am

I need sage advice, please. Toward the end of last year, the good Lord saw fit to drop a very large tree on the barn that housed my "studio". :shock: The damage was amazing. When you walked through the door, you ran into a tree. Even more amazing, not a single piece of glass was broken, and neither kiln was touched. We did lose a lot of our "toys", camping gear, bikes, etc. Anyhow, this was when I was trying to fire two large orders from two galleries. I'm still in shock that I have orders, just learning to do production, then this happens. I finished firing under tarps in miserable weather. It rained and snowed for weeks and the wind blew at thirty miles an hour, I kept firing under tarps. Everything worked out, and I delivered on time :lol: (I guess I'm meant to do this)

Here is where the advice comes in. My husband asked me the other day...what I wanted in a studio. We are rebuilding and I get to design my studio!!! But I'm still a newbie. I know what I need for kiln space, cutting and designing space, etc. But I don't know what I'm not thinking about. So....If you had to do it over again, what would you put in your studio that you don't have? What do you have that you couldn't live without. This is my chance and I don't want to screw up. By the way, how do you store all those cut pieces of glass that are too big to make frit, but too small to store with the big sheets of glass. Also,I won't have running water, so don't suggest a sink :cry: , but I can't have everything.

Please help this newbie design.

Thanks
Sandpiper, alias Robin

Kim Bellis
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Postby Kim Bellis » Fri Feb 13, 2004 11:37 am

Robin:
How wonderful! We are also in the stages of desiging a new studio and my husband and son get a 2 car garage to play in.

Must haves for me are
#1. running water.
#2. I plan on electrical outlets everywhere - I was thinking every 4 feet (we will see what hubby says about that)
#3. large windows for natural light but also so I don't feel so "caged" in.
#4. I haven't decided what type of lighting to put in - must be bright
#5.An area to do all the cutting, grinding, etc away from the actual design area
#6. The front area where you walk in will be a "gallery" area - a place to sit and talk with clients, show off work, a place for me to sit and look out over the pool and doodle.
#7. More shelving/storage for glass, molds, chemicals etc. I will have a seperate area for spectrum and one for BE
#8. Seperate area for lampworking
I am sure there are things I haven't thought of yet.

For storing smaller pieces of glass - I have plastic storage units from Target on wheels. I mark the outside of the container with the COE and then arrange by color and by type (transp or opaque etc)

There was a thread on this a while back - with lots of great advice - search the archives you'll get more ideas
Kim

Alecia Helton
Posts: 108
Joined: Mon Aug 25, 2003 12:35 am
Location: outside of Dallas TX

Postby Alecia Helton » Fri Feb 13, 2004 11:42 am

There is a tremendous amount of information on this in the archives. I redesigned my studio for remolding and a garage enclosure last fall. I received a lot of information from the Board and there was a lot in the archives then. Since then, I've contributed what I've learned at least twice.

Bascially, you'll need more electrical outlets than you think. Don't forget the GFIs. Lot's of natural light and artifical light. Since I put flourescents in my studio, someone else wrote that a combination fo flouresecents and halyogens offer the best light.

Make sure you have enough electrical power. When I purchased my third and largest kiln, I had to completely rewire my house. It cost as much as the kiln.

You'll need plenty of work surfaces and plenty of storage. You'll want some kind of floor mats in the areas where you will be standing a lot. I found excellent ones at Sam's for under $20.

That's all that comes to mind now. But there is much more in the archives.

Alecia
Alecia Helton
Wear Original Wonders!
Carrollton TX

Sandpiper
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Postby Sandpiper » Fri Feb 13, 2004 11:48 am

Thank you so much for your thoughts. I'm very lucky to have a husband who is a union carpenter. Everytime he does a demolition, he brings stuff home!!!! So far I have tile for the floor, carpet for the non studio part. I have huge windows so I can look out on the lake. I'm getting free cabinets and counter tops, and more shelves than I know what to do with.

I know I should have looked in the archives. :oops: Sorry, I have a two year old hanging on my leg at the moment. Archive searching is going to have to wait until 2:00 in the morning, I'm afraid. :lol:

Thanks again,
Sandpiper, alias Robin

charlie
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Joined: Mon Mar 10, 2003 3:08 pm

Postby charlie » Fri Feb 13, 2004 12:46 pm

carpet in the cutting area. not only will it protect somewhat if you drop items, it's easier to stand on, and i use it in breaking large pieces, like interior circles or rims as my workbenches are mdf covered. i dumpster dove and found an enormous piece of heavy duty office carpet that i put down without any padding or glue/tack sticks. when it's dirty i just vacuum, roll it up, take it outside, and hose it off.

when you wire, run multiple circuits. connect every other one to the same circuit, or wire one socket of each box to a different circuit. this will allow you to group tools and they won't be on the same circuit. same for lights, you want to be able to turn multiples of them off/on, not all at once. use 4 gang socket boxes rather than 2 gang. for a few pennies more, you get 4 sockets, not two.

wire for more than one kiln. overwire for what you currently require, as you won't want to pull more wire if you upgrade. don't forget heavy wiring for compressor station, again, more than you currently require.

run copper pipe for compressed air. multiple taps at places will allow you to run air tools at your workbench, for example, and move the compressor to someplace else to lessen noise.

figure out some way to run water, even if you don't have a drain. if you drain into a garbage can, most of the solids will settle out for disposal.

Kathie Karancz
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Postby Kathie Karancz » Fri Feb 13, 2004 1:17 pm

Hi Robin: I am just about finished my new studio and I already have some suggestions. I thought I had it all figured out but.... :roll: :roll: Here they are:
- I had a centre rolling table made which is the exact height of my counters, so if I need more length, then I can just roll my table over to the counter and carry on. The problem I ran into was height. Really make sure you figure out the right height for you. I ended up too high (people say I'm short :doubt: ), so I have the problem of what do I stand on to work - kind of sucks....
- I also wish I could just roll my table outside onto the patio instead of having a lip from the patio door to contend with
- I don't know what to do with all my large tools example: drill press, tile saw, mitre saw, ring saw... etc. So, I wish I had a table or something where I could just leave everything out and not put away.
- make sure you plan ventilation above your kiln (my husband just installed a stove hood fan above mine which vents to the outside)

Have fun and good luck!!!
Kathie Karancz
Tribal Turtle
Victoria, British Columbia
http://www.tribalturtle.com

Dani
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Postby Dani » Fri Feb 13, 2004 1:18 pm

Anything but concrete floors.... you'll know why as you get older. I vote for hardwood. And anti-fatigue mats help, too. I don't care for carpet as Charlie does, but find that you can buy those fake orientals when they're on sale and use them upside-down.... yup, they still look decorative, but you can sweep the glass off that way and they provide cushion underfoot. Beyond that I agree with everyone else.... more amps and outlets than you think you can ever use and lots of window for natural light. And insulate like crazy so your kiln will heat the place. What else? A few cats? No trees?? :wink:

Sandpiper
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Joined: Tue Apr 29, 2003 8:19 am
Location: Madison, Ohio
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Postby Sandpiper » Fri Feb 13, 2004 3:59 pm

Thanks again everyone. I figured out the table height problem when I was doing stained glass. One height for cutting, the other for soldering. I too am thinking of a rolling island, just to get it out of the way. I am considering a "pull up table, think murphy bed, with a lazy susan on it. Again, out of the way when I don't need it, there when I do. And I keep imagining a lazy susan would be a treat instead of leaning over and having my sleeve catch all those pieces I just placed.

As for water, does anyone out there use an old fashioned rain barrel as a substitute for running water. Does is work? are there problem?

Dumpster diving rules, Charlie. Love it.

How do you guys store your thinfire, etc. I'm thinking space saving. Also, how big are your studios. The more I design, the smaller mine looks. I am kind of a space hog!!!!!

And Dani, what exactly do you do with cats. Is that like a bench brush? I'm kidding, Cat lovers don't hate me. I had a cat once. I bought her as a pet for my collie. She hated me. She loved the collie.

Again, thanks.
Sandpiper, alias Robin

charlie
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Joined: Mon Mar 10, 2003 3:08 pm

Postby charlie » Fri Feb 13, 2004 4:04 pm

Sandpiper wrote:Also, how big are your studios. The more I design, the smaller mine looks. I am kind of a space hog!!!!!


it doesn't matter how big it is. it's always 50% too small.

size does matter in some cases.

Kelly Burke Makuch
Posts: 37
Joined: Tue Mar 11, 2003 10:42 pm
Location: Connecticut

Postby Kelly Burke Makuch » Fri Feb 13, 2004 4:42 pm

my studio is close to 800sqft. and I believe it is too small for the long term as I am a total tool hound and wish to fill my space with many fun toys. ( a merker for one) a dream...

I have 2rooms just as you enter my home that is a "gallery" space to chat with a client or make a sale. I prefer not to have clients in my studio unless they beg to see it. It saves me from being anal about how clean my studio is at any given moment. I'm anal enough about the rest of my home being clean--Plus I don't feel I have to worry as much about potential injury.

I'm embarrassed to say I ginny-rigged a sink for seasonal use and it works well. huge container, submersible pump elevated from bottom of container-drain hose led outside when I need to empty, water hose from outdoor faucet coming into studio with a shut-off connecter valve about a $140.00 investment. For three seasons it's works fine. I'm not concerned about sediment or excess contamination because heavy particles settle to the bottom of the container. If any water is left and becomes stagnent(sp?) I add a couple of drops of bleach. I did price out a professional plumbing hook-up and for right now I'd rather spend the $1200.00 on other things. I think its a good alternative to a studio with no water. Might not be right for all though!

I store all scrap by color/trans. etc.larger draw bins and small well labeled
containers stacked for easy access.

Enjoy the process of redesigning your studio. I would agree that you should consider GFI outlets and more electric than you need on many circuits as possible.--But keep in mind that building codes change from year to year..How much ahead planning are people comfortable with? Just a thought.... :D

Sandpiper
Posts: 42
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Location: Madison, Ohio
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Postby Sandpiper » Fri Feb 13, 2004 4:51 pm

Kelly,
your studio is almost as big as my house :twisted: My studio is going to be tiny compared to yours. Oh no, will I survive??!!!! Compared to firing under a blue tarp while rain runs down the back of my neck, my little space will be sheer luxury.
Thanks for the sink idea. Good thoughts.

Robin

Alecia Helton
Posts: 108
Joined: Mon Aug 25, 2003 12:35 am
Location: outside of Dallas TX

Postby Alecia Helton » Fri Feb 13, 2004 5:58 pm

My garage/studio is about 320 sq. ft. And, yes it is full. Too full. The shelves go all the way to the ceiling.

While I don't use thin fire, I do use a lot of fiber paper and buy it by the roll. I store it on a contraption that looks like a gaint toilet paper hanger that holds three rolls and hangs from the ceiling.

Alecia
Alecia Helton

Wear Original Wonders!

Carrollton TX

jj jacobs
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studio remodel

Postby jj jacobs » Fri Feb 13, 2004 6:23 pm

I converted my detached 1-1/2 car garage into a glass studio last year. I installed a set of French doors on the side that faces my backyard, and added two skylights to the ceiling--then insulated and finished the walls. I put in a small window heat-pump unit that is both a heater and an air-conditioner plus a ceiling fan with lights. I also had an attic fan installed that helps with the venting of fumes as well as getting the heat out in the afternoons when I'm not inside the studio.

I left the garage door intact and open it occasionally for fresh air. The garage door opener is still up and works great as an extra light source--it's right above my work table. My brother painted all of the walls including the open ceiling and rafters a bright white semi-gloss which makes the place seem larger than it really is.

With the skylights and French doors I don't even need to turn on the lights during the day. The only two things I wish I had are running water and a lot more room--I've outgrown my space already!

JJ

bernie
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Joined: Tue Feb 10, 2004 12:11 am
Location: snohomish, wa.

silver lining

Postby bernie » Sun Feb 15, 2004 2:13 am

How about a bathroom. I hate when I'm busy and have to run into the
house because I didn't install a toilet. I have commercial 3x3 squares of carpet on my concrete floors - very nice. If it gets trashed - pull up a
square and put another down. A sink is a must - even if you drain it into
a barrel outside - let the heavy stuff settle to the bottom and dump the
water.

Kim Bellis
Posts: 133
Joined: Sat Jun 14, 2003 9:48 pm
Location: Tampa, Florida
Contact:

Postby Kim Bellis » Sun Feb 15, 2004 11:16 am

Alecia:
where did you get your "roll hanger"? I will be needing one.

I have seen some cutting tables covered with small nap carpet. How many of you use this type of system? how well does it work?

Thanks
Kim

Alecia Helton
Posts: 108
Joined: Mon Aug 25, 2003 12:35 am
Location: outside of Dallas TX

Postby Alecia Helton » Sun Feb 15, 2004 1:04 pm

Kim,

It was custom built for me by my contractor out of pvc pipe and cross fittings. I'll post a picture of it if someone will point me to the instructions for uploading photos.

Alecia
Alecia Helton

Wear Original Wonders!

Carrollton TX

jerry flanary
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Location: norfolk, va

Postby jerry flanary » Sun Feb 15, 2004 8:06 pm

As someone else mentioned, insulation. It only takes a day to insulate and it will improve your work environment for years! And it is something that if you don't do at the start it's pretty much never going to happen because when again are you going to have access to all the walls?
Bathroom. Last thought of during design, first thing noticed missing!
Ventilation is very important. Light is very important. Also plan to have something across the workspace that is interesting to look at, or out the window if the studio is real small, so that you can look at it every fifteen minutes or so to train your eyes on something further away than your hands. This should cut down on eyestrain/ damage.
j.

A lack of doubt doesn't lend certainty.

Lynne Chappell
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Postby Lynne Chappell » Mon Feb 16, 2004 12:35 am

Re: cutting table surface. A little cushion is nicer to cut on, but I don't like carpet because small bits of glass get in it and scratch your glass and you can't really wipe up liquid spills. I use upholstery vinyl, which is just enough cushion and easy to sweep up. The cutting table is really THE table, cause my home studio is pretty small, only 10 x 14. That doesn't include the kiln which is in the garage next door with a couple of shelves and small table surface. I'm only allowed that little corner of the garage itself, not because of any cars in the garage but because of all the power tools my husband has filled it with. I'm actually really happy to have the other room for assembly, cause the wood dust used to get all over my glass.

I need more storage though. So put in as many shelves as you can, and plan for storage under and over any surface you can. The molds seem to take up an inordinate amount of room and I'm always wanting the one on the bottom of the pile. I've got the small pieces of glass in trays that are just cardboard boxes cut down to 2" high, on shelves spaced only a few inches apart under one end of the table, vertical glass racks under the other end, leaving the center with lots of foot kicking room. Add floor to ceiling shelves, a lampworking table, a light table, and the end of the room that will eventually be a sink, but is now a hose. I have to turn it on and off at the floor, but at least I don't have to go into the house for water.

Need more electricity, but I can't get that without upgrading the service to the entire house.

Dani
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Postby Dani » Mon Feb 16, 2004 1:23 am

And if memoray serves, wasn't Judith at Vitrum Glass asking for input a while back..... either for a class or article about the ideal studio space? I know we got lots of responses that are probably in the archives. Really good ideas. :idea:


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