How to Clean Stained Glass After Soldering

by Joost | Updated on:  June 20, 2021
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The world is now going through an age of creative innovations and designing which add a whole new dimension to the manufacturing and architectural world. Staining of glass has been an age-old art that has been used in significant structures and presently, this crafting method has gone to a whole new level with the addition of three-dimensional structures and modern crafting methods.
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Can You Polish Solder?

You surely noticed that a cloth picks up blackish waste from the soldered part of the object. Yes, you can polish the glass which is soldered. There is a presence of abrasive elements in polishing material. Polishing before the wax is the best option in this case. It will help you in getting rid of the very last of the dirt off your solder stripes.
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How to Solder Stained Glass?

After staining the glass pieces, they need to get soldered as per requirements. Following are the steps you need to follow to solder the stained glass properly.
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Locating the Glass You will first need to stick your tracing paper design on to the beam and all your foiled pieces should be placed carefully in position. In case of shortage of batons, bind them together in a few crucial areas so that they cannot move. Stapling of Soldering Soldering iron or a soldering gun that is at least 80 Watts should be used. Staple the panel along with soldering so that it remains held in place. For this to be done, a little liquid flux is needed to be brushed on the vital joints and a certain quantity of flux has to be melted down on each of these joints. Soldering of the Junctions Good soldering is the product of heat and time. If you notice that your iron is hotter, movement should then be faster. On the other hand, if your preference is to work at a slow pace, then heat must be turned down. For keeping the spike of the iron silver clean, wiping with a wet sponge should be done now and then.

How to Clean Stained Glass After Soldering

For the finished product or object to last long with good quality, you have to maintain the cleanliness. Cleaning the stained glass after soldering is done, is a crucial thing. The steps are-
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Initial Cleaning of the Soldered Part Firstly, you need to clean the soldered part twice with a lot of Windex and paper towels. This will help to neutralize the flux. Application of the Alcoholic Solution Then 91% isopropyl alcohol should be applied with cotton balls. This will clean the soldered part of the product properly. Cleaning the Area You Are Working On The workbench you are working on should be covered with sufficient newspaper so that the wax does not drip through to the workbench. Awareness for Your Clothing Patina can cause damage to your clothing. So, use old clothes or have sufficient protection for your clothes.

Measures to Be Taken for Working With Patina

Liver damage can be caused by copper patina if it enters your bloodstream. Moreover, selenium in blackish patina is very poisonous if it comes in contact with your skin. Therefore, putting on disposable rubber gloves is a must. Besides, the Ventilation of the room should be maintained properly.
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Be Aware of the Material The application of the patina to the solder should be done with cotton balls. You should avoid double-dipping of the filthy cotton ball into the wax bottle because contamination of the bottle will make it impractical. Cleaning the Residual Patina Wiping off of excess patina with paper towels should be done after the application of the patina to the solder. Chemical to Be Used Cleaning and shining of the entire project should be done with Clarity Stained Glass Finishing Compound. Noticing the Improper Polishing See your project under the natural light to notice if there is an area that still has a polishing compound left on it. If such an area is noticed, wiping with a dry cloth should be done. Avoid Using the Used Material Twice Disposal of filthy cotton balls, paper towels, newspaper, and rubber gloves should be done and abstain from reusing the used ones.

How Do You Remove Oxidation From Stained Glass?

A quarter cup of white vinegar and a teaspoon of table salt needs to be mixed until the salt gets dissolved. Then the pieces of foiled glass should be mixed into the mixture and swirling should be done for about half a minute. Then you need to wash out the pieces with water and set them for drying. This is how you can remove oxidation from stained glasses.
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How to Remove the Patina From Stained Glass?

Patina is sometimes a part of the design element on the stained glasses. A mixture consisting of a teaspoon of white salt, a cup of white vinegar, and a sufficient amount of flour should be turned into a paste-like form. Then the paste should be mixed with olive oil and applied on the surface. Thus, a patina will be removed from the stained glass.
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How Do You Keep Stained Glass Solder Shiny?

The people looking at your product will always admire the cleanliness and the outer shine of it. Keeping your stained glass clean and shiny is a vital thing to be maintained. Following are the steps to be followed for keeping your stained glass shiny:
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Wash and Let Dry Once the soldering is done, clean your stained glass with patina and flux remover.  Then wash it well with water. Make sure you dry the solder lines with a paper towel so there remains no water on the glass piece. Apply the Cleaning Solution After the stained glass is dried, a mixture containing 4 parts of distilled water and 1 part of ammonia should be applied. Again, it needs to be dried properly. Avoid Tap Water Do not use tap water because the additives in the water can come and react with the patina. The Final Touch Now, you need to dip a paper towel into the patina and scrub it all around the piece to cover the solder stripes.  Then, the patina will come out shiny as you desire.

FAQ

Q: Can you solder after patina? Ans: Soldering after application of patina should not be done. Because, patination is the last touch in this fabrication process and if soldering is done after patination then, the applied heat from the torch will cause damage to the patina and the overall quality of the product will fall. Q: Can you clean stained glass with Windex? Ans: Stained glass should never be cleaned with ammonia containing chemicals. Windex has good traces of ammonia and it is not wise to use Windex for cleaning stained glass as it can cause heavy damage to the glass. Q: Why the ventilation of the room is a must for the cleaning process of the stained glass? Ans: Ventilation of the room used for this process needs to be maintained properly because patina fumes can cause copper poisoning which can be detrimental to health.

Conclusion

As a seller, buyer, or a user, outlook, and cleanliness of a product is very important. And speaking about stained glasses, cleanliness and the maintenance of its shine are two benchmarks to be achieved for making into the market and catching the attraction of the customers. Stained glasses, since its advent have been used in various structures and antique pieces, and as an enthusiast on this vast designing process, the knowledge of how to keep the final products clean after being soldered is a must.
Joost Nusselder, the founder of Tools Doctor is a content marketer, dad and loves trying out new equipment, and together with his team he's been creating in-depth blog articles since 2016 to help loyal readers with tools & crafting tips.