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I think Lori's the reigning queen on the lollipop press. I have the
Saturn, and I don't know it the process would be the same for both, but
here goes. If I wind two little beads somewhere between 1/2" and 3/4"
apart and then keep filling the middle until the whole molten thing
looks like a large marble, I can then press and the bead turns out
I have it. Loooooove it! (If you hadn't noticed).
The main thing I do is wind a footprint that is the same width as the
mold to start with. I'm pretty good at it now but still hold it over
the mold sometimes to make sure it's the right length. After that, I
basically just add glass until I get the right amount on there. I'll
give you a hint on that in a minute.
As for the smooshing part...I'm finding that if you let it start to form
a slight skin (i.e., not soupy molten) then put it down into the bottom
of the mold and gently press down to fill it up, then bring your top
part straight down onto it, you get the best results. I also find that
sometimes one side is more round than the other. I therefore wiggle
mandrel back and forth (side to side) while still in the mold and the
glass can still move. It somehow helps.
Ok, how much glass? Get a piece of silly putty, polymer clay, play
dough, whatever and find the right amount that fits in there and makes a
perfect shape, no ridges. Then when you have it, roll it into a lemon
shape and keep it in front of you for reference when you're getting your
glass onto the mandrel. That is the shape I use before I
smoosh....plump lemon. Don't worry if your ends are pointy before
smooshing...it all works out. And don't worry if it's not a perfect,
plump lemon...just so the footprintis the right length.
I hope that helps. Let me know if you have any more questions.
Thank you Lori. I think I'm just having a bad lampworking night. You know
when nothing goes right? After the fifth bead in the water jar I give up.
And I wouldn't have dunked them if the bead release hadn't of gotten all
over the place.
I'll give it a go in the morning. :-)