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Wednesday, October 31, 2012

How I drill seaglass

I usually prefer to wire wrap my seaglass designs, but over the years, I sometimes hand drill holes in my seaglass, just for a different look.  It does take a lot of patience and, even courage, to drill a beautiful piece of seaglass.  I have lost a number of pieces due to drilling too close to the edge, too hard, etc.  Here's some of my techniques -- but remember that it takes patience!

I use a Dremel drill, and I hand hold it so I can better control the pressure on the glass.  I did buy one of those drill holders, but it simply didn't work for me.

I use a cookie sheet (shallow pan), sponge, and diamond bits that I bought on line. The diamond bits are expensive, but last quite a while.

I fill the pan with water, put the sponge in it and make sure it is saturated.

Then I put the piece of sea glass on top of the sponge.  Make sure the glass is wet, too.

I gently (!) put the drill on the glass, and hold down the glass with a plastic knife.  The key thing is to not let the glass move.  After about three or five seconds of drilling, lift up the drill.  Check to see if there is a circular indentation in the glass.  Then position the drill in the indentation, and drill a few seconds more.  Use light to medium pressure now.  But don't drill too long, or the glass will get hot and break!  The glass and drill bit should be wet.

It should take about a minute to drill through a piece of glass.  It happens faster than you think, so keep checking.  Some people say to mark the spot, and then drill on the opposite side so you meet in the middle.  I have trouble lining this up -- but it may work for you.   Good Luck!

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