Masking Niobium

My next step with the Niobium is to  work with some masking /masking shapes
I purchased some mighty mask from  RMS (Reative Metal Studios)  and I got to use my heart cutter today as well -

I also got 50 discs of niobium pre cut from RMS as well

so today was try out the masking niobium

a bit of thought but pretty easy

I put a heart mask onto the bare metal
I then did it to  a higher  voltage about 71  gave me a nice purple
I cleaned then took the little heart mask off -  then put it back in and colored it to the blue  about 31 volts
very cool   - now to find time to do more 

Time to start bulking up stock for the spring

First things first -  buy the slumping mold I have wanted and it comes  now with the metal mold to create the shape for slumping which makes smoother edges  and hopefully less wet work to clean up after

Bonny Doon Fused Glass Products :  some really lovely molds and tools

this is my first buy  - with more to follow from them

IMG_6028.jpgthis shows the metal form

Screen Shot 2016-01-27 at 7.06.41 AM.pngthis is the slumping mold

As you can see a really beautiful mold  shape

I plan on each pay to order a couple of molds from them and possibly the bar formers as well

so excited to use my big kiln


Yes I  check Kijiji every once in a while (something like craigs list in the u.s.)  and came across a contents sale -  I checked the kiln out - worth 3700 cdn  - and the kiln I want ! -
 I had very little in the bank this weekend - If  only I hadnt spent  so much money last week .....anyway
pick it up tomorrow between noon and 4 - so happy  could dance

came home put plywood in back of car for support  - and cleaned an area in the studio so \i can plunk it in there till spring - hoping my daughter and I can lug this to the car up a set of stairs - the lid comes off which is good - and the base has handles and I'll take out the shelves that add a lot of weight

Cone Art Glass Kiln  42 x 31 x 9

comes with shelves 

extremely happy now I have the kiln I've always wanted !!!!!   A big one so I can do big things  yeah !!!!

More Niobium

Today was playing with  Niobium and Titanium again

I cleaned up some items from last batch and made some new discs to play with and some ear wires

First you need to know that niobium is a bit more expensive than silver  eg.  30g  of niobium  is 1.65 per sq inch and  Sterling Silver is 1.19 per sq inch - based on Rio grande who conveniently prices it out so you can compare

Rio and Reactive metals are same price  for niobium  - I am going to purchase the pre cut discs from Reactive - 3/4" this will save me time and waste

I also bought a heart disc cutter

 from JewelleryTool on Etsy
So yesterday I cut  some hearts (which led me to buying the heart cutter )
Sizes include ½”, 5/8”, 3/8”, 1” 

The sizes I cut were 3/4" (max of my disc cutter )  then cut the hearts - also some dangles form 14g wire
Today I did some more discs - including some titanium krystal - which had some cool effects when annodized 

I cut the discs and domed them - 
so that you get even color I made hooks that go with the clip 
you should only use like metals such as titanium or niobium to conduct the electricity - never submerge the clip - it will draw the current away - as well as if you tried to assemble your piece with copper /silver or other metals - will draw away from the current for your niobium or titanium 

so my hooks are titanium - you can see the colors created on the hooks
I put the cleaned titanium krystal on the hooks - not touching 

I submerged - just the discs and some wire - but not the metal clamp 

the blue is at 30v

 I ran it up to 100 volts just to see  this does not show you the nice teal/green effect
front and back are done at same time 

then I did a rainbow sort of effect - loved it 


once you go  to the 100v +  then it stays 
that color so if you want to do shapes you need to put on resists that you can stick on or paint on - that is next
Color works that  you retain the highest voltage color - you can go backwards - so you would do the highest color you want with the resist on then you can go to a lower voltage to color the area you put the resist on 

NEXT ! - on my new adventures

Bottle cutting

Lets see - I have had this one sitting on  my shelf for years and years (when I say years and years that is over 10  and possibly just a little less than 16 ) - I've tried without great success with it - but never a real want to do it - so I may give it another try

While  doing the slumped wine bottles I wanted to do some other things as well - glasses/wine glasses or such with recycling bottles

I figure if I break the bottles I can make a dish - which is also on the new discovery road

I checked out bottle cutters and went with the

Kinkajou Bottle Cutter - Deluxe Kit

I brought a bottle down on the weekend to try but was too busy playing with the Niobium 
but will get a go at it possibly tonight with a step by step 

More Niobium

Fun - we picked the colors we wanted - and my grand daughter dipped - we used  double hooks so we could dip both at the same time to get the same levels and colors
did some square and circles 

NIOBIUM ! Yes Yes Yes

This morning I cut a couple of pieces of niobium and went to the studio and  microfolded for effect

set up took all of 3 minutes  from my bin that holds all the equipment for anodizing
 I can reuse 
the stainless steel anode 
The nice thing is I am not working with any dangerous chemicals - the TSP is a household cleaner/soap mixed in water 
The most dangerous is the electrical part - long as you follow instructions its easy -

first I did some titanium just to check it was working

then I did the first Niobium sample - and hen my grand daughter who is 6 wanted to try - so we gloved her up and she did a niobium

OMG !  the one on the left  is mine - the one on the right is my grand daughters

I think the color is brighter on the niobium for sure - but I may not have the titanium clean enough - I'll have to reserve that till I get the multi etch and so some samples brushing with steel wool as well

so easy so simple

Next is making some paint brushes that will conduct and I can brush in the areas I want to brush  and also get a piece of sea sponge and do a sponge effect

of course I may now cut pieces that I could turn into earrings or pendants so I dont waste it

but fun - wow and fast -  immediate gratification - this is definitely going to be more fun

Annodizing Titanium - First set up and test

I am so excited that I am finally doing this - today is Titanium - the less expensive of the two reactive metals - Its like using copper rather than silver to make tests

so the first steps

Prepare your container

I chose for this first test a small container - basically as long as your piece fits it will work

With all the plastic containers I have around the house I chose  a small glass mason jar that I will keep just for this.
then I got the plastic mesh out - I bought it I think possibly at the dollar store  or maybe michaels in the embroidery/cross stitch section - not that expensive for a piece that looks to be 12 x 10 or so
Easy to cut with scissors - and you will have left over for a larger set up if you want

I cut to fit so that the ends matched inside the jar

Next  I cut a piece of the stainless steel anode - with scissors as it very thin -  got this from Reactive metals -  the width  was taller than the jar but I cut out a piece so that only a tail was left to fold over the edge of the jar

I then filled the jar with water
Place the anode inside and folded the tail over the edge
then put the plastic mesh over the anode (this is so you dont touch the negative to the positive lead )

now before putting in the TSP into the water - I prepared some pieces

I bought this sheet from online metals - 12 x 12

I was going to cut with hand shears as it is thin enough to handle that way - but I took a walk up and sheered a couple of strips - way faster

I also punched holes as I was not sure how I was going to use the pieces - these are definitely wonky - not measured as they are for testing only -  I like to check out how to do this - get some control and have some samples to check out when I do want to make items

Now you have to clean the metal -  there is something call multi etch - which is on its way to  me from the Ring Lord here in Canada - clean the metal perfectly but a little of that TSP works wonders as well -  wash the pieces and dry - try to keep you hands off as the oils transfer from your fingers (same rule as in etching)

I had already plugged in my annodizer and turned it on to test it - then turned it off \

so now I am ready -

I put on my rubber gloves - and added the tsp to the water -  I think I may have put too much for the size as a lot came to the top but it eventually settled -  You will note I have a wooden spoon for mixing - love the dollar store -  and I write on what I use it for and it will stay with my anodizing kit in the box -  I mixed the TSP thoroughly (or as best I could) I was way too anxious at this stage

(note I was doing this on my glass top stove - non conductive and easy clean up - be careful if your work surface is a stainless steel table - be best to have ceramic or wood under your work - something non conductive just in case )

with the Anodizer OFF  I plugged in the black (negative) lead and attached to the tail of the stainless steel anode

then with the Anodizer OFF  I plugged in the red (positive ) lead and attached to the titanium piece

I dipped it in the container to wet it - you can see the excess tsp -  but I just swirled it a bit

I took out and then turned on the anodizer - I was so excited !!!!!  I found that I got this set up in 2005 - 11 years ago and its taken me this long to turn it on for the first time !!!

I set the anodizer to 20 turning the larger grey knob to the right the top number is the voltage
then I dipped 

there is a reaction !- sort of brown color at this voltage 
 then to 30

gives a blue/purple hue 

then to 40

 a light blue hue - and as I work my way up the  the blue /purple is getting deeper

then to 50

more of a yellow hue

then to 70

Rosy Pink hue

then to 90

it bubbled in the water and sort of smoked 

sort of a greeny yellow hue 

then to 100

sort of browny again - but I didnt leave myself much metal at the end 


Take piece off red lead  and wash off with clear water  and dry 
was hard to get the really nice colors to show 

so this is titanium -  I will do niobium soon but I am now off to play a little more without having to take a pic at each step 

I did a few more - then I had other things to do today so Titanium is done - I hope to do niobium tomorrow to see the differences etc..

in this session I used something called a grabber - I like this going to get a few more of these 

I am going to pick a couple of the colors and do them either fully for the piece or a combo as I see some nice mixes between certain voltages 
I think  5 minutes to set up and that included cutting the plastic and anode 
and 5 min of the process because I was taking pictures 

WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW - SO FREAKING EASY !!!!I had to post right away just how easy this is!!!!