Re: To Clarify for Anyone Interested Re Flameworked/Wound Glass Beads VS Lampwound Glass Beads ETC -- AnneLFG Post Reply Edit Forum Where am I?
Posted by: floorkasp Post Reply
08/21/2019, 04:18:07

It does get tricky indeed, when it comes to defining what distinguishes one type of wound glass bead from the next.
At the moment, I am working on a book about lampworked beads, and will look at the early methods of wound beads, and the newer method of lampworking.

The method of making wound glass beads with the 'Hot Vulcano' is one example of a method of making wound glass beads that has some similarities to lampwork beads. However, there are also still differences.

Even though the definitions of lampworking vary, there are a few characteristics to lampworking. The most important one is, like Jamey also said, the use of a single pointed flame as a heat source. Others are the use of pre-fabricated glass, either as chunks or rods, that are heated in the flame. This method allows the maker to be up close to the actual making of the bead.
The original method for lampworking was the use of an oil lamp with a blow tube through which the maker would blow to create a hotter and more pointed flame. Later versions include the use of bellows, double bellows, and much later: oxygen. The fuel source has also changed from a variety of oils/fats to different types of gas.
From what I have mostly seen, flameworking is a term for the same method as lampworking. However, the term flameworking was (and is) more commonly used for work related to the making of scientific glass instruments, working with hollow glass tubing and specifically working with borosilicate glass. I do not see it used much as an alternative for wound glass predating lampwork.

The main difference with the 'Hot Vulcano' and lampwork is how pointed the flame is. There have been quite a few interesting experiments in getting a more pointed flame in a variety of different shaped furnaces, and even in an open flame. Also, there are a few examples dating back to Roman times where glass objects show signs of the use of a very small pointed flame, which can only be achieved by lampworking. So there is some 'crossover' between one technique and the other. However, the general rule is if a bead predates 1600 CE (or thereabouts) it is not a lampworked bead.

And to make it more complicated: not all lampwork beads are wound beads. For example small hollow blown beads, made from a tube of glass, are often lampwork beads, but are not wound.

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