Have you ever wondered how glass items can be shaped, structured, and textured to look like almost anything? Have you ever looked at a complicated glass vase, a beautiful spiraling glass staircase, or a shapely backsplash and pondered the effort that went into it?
Most of those items were probably produced by a concept known as glass casting. At CBD Glass in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, we rely on this technique often. We’ll now share the wonders of glass casting.
What Is Glass Casting?
Glass casting is a simple but effective means of shaping glass items. First, you heat up the temperature of the glass to the point where it gets soft and malleable. Then, you transfer the liquid glass into a mold. This mold may be made of metal, graphite, or even sand.
The glass fills the mold and hardens. After the glass has totally cooled, remove the glass from the mold. You can then enjoy your glass item. It’s as simple as that.
Where Did It Come From?
The process of glass casting has a long, fascinating history. This technique goes back to the Roman and Egyptian times. In its earliest iteration, the Romans would make glass dishes through glass casting. The technique caught on, moving next to Italy and later, the rest of the world.
How Does It Work?
Depending on the type of mold you’re using, glass casting techniques differ somewhat. We’ll explain each technique:
- Graphite casting: Graphite molds can be various shapes. Glass must be heated at very high temperatures until it’s a molten liquid. It’s then added to the molds. Before the glass solidifies, it must be moved to an annealing kin.
- Pate de verre: This French term refers to using glass paste to make shaped glass. Enamels, colorants, water, and gum arabic are combined with miniscule glass pieces. This creates a sticky texture that can be fitted inside a mold. This mold is malleable due to the texture of the pate de verre.
- Kiln casting: Silica or plaster molds are most commonly used with kiln casting. Glass isn’t the only material that can go into a kiln mold; metal, wood, and sometimes wax are favored, too.
- Sand casting: Sand casting is similar to the process described above. The mold already comes prepared. The glass is heated until it’s a liquid. It sticks to the sand mold due to the clay bentonite, which prevents absorption of liquids. Once the glass hardens, it can be removed from the mold.
At CBD Glass, we use graphite casting, kiln casting, and sand casting to design your customized glass items. These include glass bricks, lighting fixtures, furniture, railings, shower enclosures and doors, sinks and vanities, backsplashes, and countertops.
Now that you know how we make your glass items, why not order from us today? We only require the room measurements and desired glass thickness to send you a quote. If you have blueprints or drawings, those help, too.
No matter what type of glass item you want, whether for residential or commercial use, call on us at CBD Glass. We can make it happen.