After reading a thread in the LampworkEtc. Forum about using regular propane for a HotHead torch, I decided to give it a try since I'm still developing my skills and it's less than half the cost of buying Mapp gas in bulk. I found that they were right about the glass not getting mucked up as long as you don't work too low in the flame. I think I did okay with the exception of the first couple of beads.
I wanted to get back to work exploring the glass and how it responds to the flame. I played around with some of the frits that I have and a few samples that I just bought.
I love the iris orange/raku reduction frit, but the iris green-amber reduction frit is divine! Particularly on ivory glass which is fast becoming one of my favourites to work with. I really like how you get these unpredictable reactions with other colours that contain copper etc. in them.
I haven't gotten any silver wire yet that's pure enough to work properly on a bead. I'm looking forward to playing with that.
I love how the two long beads (11) turned out with the bright candy colours. I used some twisties and stringers to make the swirls and dots. The blue aventurine frit over sky blue (6) came out pretty nice. I was playing with layers using the frit and transparent clear glass. As a result of these experiments, I plan to buy some fine aventurine frits in several colours. I can't resist the sparkle! The striking cherry red (12) was unexpected. It was part of the "gambler's pack" that AiG is all sold out of. I was so disappointed when I found out, and wished I had bought TWO lbs. instead of just the one. Oh well.
Once I get enough beads accumulated, I'll send them off to be batch annealed.