Ever wonder how glass is made, or how it is shaped? The process, though potentially dangerous if the craftsperson isn’t careful, is not as complex as you might think.
“Glass was made by fire,” said Dr. Nikolay Gerasimchuck, professor of chemistry at Missouri State University. “So, it can be treated and cut by fire.”
Glass blowing requires several special pieces of equipment, including a tabletop blow torch, a Tungsten carbide knife for cutting treated glass and safety goggles. Gerasimchuck teaches his chemistry students this technique because a chemist who can make his own vials will save his company thousands of dollars. It’s a very valuable skill, he explains.
“The trick is to make even rotations when heating the glass,” said Gerasimchuck. “It takes some practice, but it’s what provides even heating to the glass.”
While hot and cold glass look the same, do not touch it until it has cooled for approximately 15 minutes.