Cutting glass accurately is an intricate skill. Can you do it of your own? Make sure that you are not breaking the glass apart. You need to do the job smoothly, at the same time accurately. Edges should be even and perfect. Are you anxious?
There is nothing to worry about, as glass cutting tools are there to do the job for you. Be patient and go through these instructions.
What is the technique? Cutting glass is based on the perfection of scoring. Perfect scoring depends on the even pressure you are giving perpendicular to the glass surface and of course the cutter should be a good one. Therefore, you have to depend on glass cutting tools a lot. Just follow the tips below.
- Make a shallow score on the surface of the piece of glass. The place of the glass should be the one where you need to cut the glass apart.
- The scoring now has made a split in the surface (tensions in the glass are released now). You need to bend the pane of the glass carefully. You can use your hand or a tool. If your tool is a good one, you are guaranteed that the glass is cut (made pieces apart) perfectly or precisely.
You can cut regular glasses in this way; but you need to be careful on tempered glass, as it often shatters. You may not break it cleanly or perfectly into pieces you want.
There is a second method to follow-
- Place a finger below the edge of that glass
- Give it a gentle push horizontally
These two methods are useful when you need to break glasses on a glass cutting table which often lifts it (the glass) with the force (air up) through the table. The third method, you can use requires placing of scoring along the edge of tables and it is useful for smaller sheets of glass.
- Snap the overhanging part of that glass with downward motion. Therefore, the break will follow scoring.
You need to be careful here, as breaking the glass with one finger is dangerous and it can pinch your finger while is rolling away. If you can have a look along the edge of the glass cut, you can easily tell which way the cutter had run or which way the glass had been snapped.
Inside of glass cutting tools-
Glass cutting tools may use-
- A diamond for creating the split, or
- A cutting (small) wheel made up of hardened steel or sometimes tungsten carbide which is of 4 to 6 mm of diameter.
- In some cases, glass cutters may hold little amount of oil (cutting) for lubricating the wheel and preventing the glass to be split from closings.
Wheels made up of tungsten carbide last long than wheels of steels and it’s more efficient in cutting glasses. Earlier, in middle ages, the tool was of a sharply pointed rod which was heated to a pretty high temperature. Then the heated (red) rod point was taken to draw along the surface of the glass. Thus glasses were broken apart; but the job wasn’t accurate enough. It needed to further to chip to its actual shape with the aid of a hooked tool.
Now we need glass cutting tools to get adapted to change penetration action of its wheel for various type of structural composition of glasses. The wheel is capable of changing its degree of bevel for sharp or dull cut on glasses. A soft glass requires dull cut while a hard glass requires a sharper cut. Difference in cutter wheel diameters carries significance. The ratio between the pressure of the wheel while it rolls over the glass plane and its arc is very important. On average, this ratio of 7/32” results the best. Wheel with small arc is optimal to follow lines (curved) without dragging.
You’ll need a glass cutting table of computer aided CNC (Computer Numerical Control) and you can score large sheet of glasses with it.
Glasses used for general purposes (float glasses) are made up of 1.5 mm – 25 mm. Thin float glasses can be cut easily with the cutter though it requires support under its panel while being scored. Thick glasses (10 mm) are difficult to be cut and it requires skills to break through scoring with uses of glass cutting tools.
Cutting of bottles
You can cut glass bottles or re-craft them using glass cutting tools and it’s an art, you can say. It’s more critical than cutting of any other glasses (flat plane). Here, the cutter has to cut a round surface.
Thus the cutter is designed differently. It needs to find the center of the curvature and swing the arm along with steel made head around the bottle. The intention is to score a line clearly. It can be difficult, as the glass may shatter. Three methods can be utilized here.
- Rope method- in this method a rope or piece of string is tied up tightly to the bottle on the line to score.
- You have to paint the string with flammable oil which is later on set on fire. The heat of burning string will soften in the score line.
- While the score is warm still, set the bottle under the flow of cold water. It will tighten heated molecules very quickly.
Now the stress of the bottle will be released and the result of a break in the glass. You may notice a problem here. The stress is so great that the bottle can fail to cause break instantly on the scoring line. It may cause jagged pieces which will take a long time to be grinded down.
- Torch method- you’ll find it similar to the rope method; but here you’ll have to practice more.
- Use a torch and afterwards heat the bottle on the score line.
- When the bottle reaches required temperature, place it under cold water.
Problems of the previous method may still arrive; but it’s more accurate than the previous one.
- Water method- this method uses entirely water and you can cut the bottle perfectly with cheap rate.
- Pour boiling water on the score line. Raise the temperature slowly than that of fire method.
- If the bottle is warm, set it under cold water for breaking.
You may still notice jagged edges or stress lines here; but it has the best success rate so far using of glass cutting tools.