Recycling Glass | Facts & Tips

Glass. It’s something we really couldn’t live without, from the bottles & jars in a grocery store, to the windshield in your car or even the back painted glass in your home. We’ve all been taught to recycle it but you probably don’t know much about it or some of the benefits from it.

Glass Cullet

Let’s start off with a Useful Glass Recycling Term:
Cullet – Glass that’s been crushed & is ready to be remelted & recycled.

Using cullet is extremely environmentally friendly in creating new glass. It requires less energy, is less damaging to blasting furnaces, creates no by-products & saves raw materials. In fact the Glass Packaging Institute estimates that for every ton of cullet used to create new glass, “ 1,300 pounds of sand, 410lbs of soda ash, 380lbs of limestone, and 160lbs of feldspar” are saved.  Since glass products can be made of up to 70% cullet it can have quite the positive impact on a manufacturing plant.

Here’s a round up of some interesting & useful facts about that you might not have known about glass recycling .

  • Glass is 100% recyclable and can be recycled indefinitely without sacrificing any quality.
  • 90% of recycled glass is used to create new bottles & jars. Which can then find themselves back on store shelves within a month.
  • The remaining 10% of glass recycled finds itself in a host of consumer materials including housing materials, furniture, & consumer electronics.
  • California has the highest % of recycled bottles in the US at 80%

How the glass is collected plays a large role in the quality & type of recycling the glass must go through. To find some of the best practices for glass collection head on over to the Glass Packaging Institute which has thoroughly explains how to help ensure glass recycling efficiency.

Sources: Glass Packaging Institute, US EPA

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Sodaglass will be at The Kitchen and Bath Industry Show

We’ll be at he Kitchen and Bath Industry Show in Las Vegas from April 26th – 28th 2011.

The Kitchen & Bath Industry Show (KBIS) is the world’s largest international trade event focused exclusively on all aspects of kitchens and baths specifically serving kitchen and bath dealers, designers, architects, remodelers, wholesalers and custom builders. It is the ultimate destination to discover the latest products, designs, trends and education that the industry has to offer. Owned by the National Kitchen and Bath Association (NKBA), KBIS is sponsored by Kitchen and Bath Business (K+BB) and produced by Nielsen Expositions.

Year after year KBIS continues to showcase more products than ever, bring you star-studded celebrity guests, provide the most informative educational sessions and deliver the best networking opportunities. Be a part of the industry, be there!

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Glass Making Techniques Part 3 | Modern Manufacturing

While back painted glass is definitely one of the most modern uses & incarnations of glass, the creation & manipulation of glass has been around for thousands of years. Over then next few weeks we’ll be going over some of the techniques used by through out history to create this beautiful material we know as glass.

Welcome to the third & final part of our series on glass making techniques. In our previous posts we covered the gradual evolution of creating glass objects from the simple coating of clay molds, to glass blown by artists whose skills are gained throughout their life time, to the unskilled labors using mechanical presses. All these process have lead up to what we consider to be the modern manufacturing of glass and many are still used but in a much larger & faster way.

To start things off a near continuous stream of molten glass is feed into the forming machines from the aptly named melting tank. Now how each particular forming machine then creates the glass object is where all the former glass making techniques come back into play. As you’d expect there are methods best suited for particular objects. For example, the technique of blowing glass when combined with the molds perfected by casting, allow for the mass production of bottles, beakers, etc.

The introduction of mechanical aid & machines first seen with the mechanical press in the mid 1800s have since been fully automated. Continuously feed with molten glass computerized hydraulics presses have allowed for the creation of cups, bowls, and plates at a rate and level of quality completely unobtainable in years past.

While rolling presses have allowed for high quality sheets, panes, & windows to be mass produced. Windows in particular saw great leaps in quality & uniformity from these modernization techniques, as glass blown windows had some obvious draw backs.

Glass making has, still is a fascinating process, the refinement & automation of these processes have allowed the wide spread use of glass in our every day lives. From iPhones & TVs to cars & homes it’d be quite hard to imagine a world without glass.

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Glass Making Techniques Part 2 | Engraving & The Mechanical Press

While back painted glass is definitely one of the most modern uses & incarnations of glass, the creation & manipulation of glass has been around for thousands of years. Over then next few weeks we’ll be going over some of the techniques used by through out history to create this beautiful material we know as glass.
Welcome to the second part of our glass making technique series. In our last part we covered the main methods used to create glass for thousands of years. During these years engraving techniques were developed that allowed for the elaborate decoration of artisan made glass. Through the use of hand held metal or stone wheel tools often tipped with diamond or copper textures & designs would be made by grinding & cutting into the glass. An artistic technique called stippling, which through the use of dots could add shading & patterns was also used.  In order to create the patterns a diamond tipped tool would need to be tapped on the glass hundreds if not thousands of times, making it quite a labor intensive process.

As glass making made it’s way into the 1800s an era known for the revolution of industry, a new technique & tool came about that require very little skill from those making glass object. This tool was the mechanical press & it improved upon the idea set forth by casting. By creating a template pattern made out of iron or bronze hot or molten glass could simply be placed in this mold the press would be closed & as the glass cooled it would take the form of the template pattern. This technique made it possible for unskilled laborers to create beautiful glass items. Unfortunately this method wasn’t perfect as deformates could often be seen in the finished product. To combat this, initial mechanical presses required very intricate patterns which hid this imperfections in the glass. Fortunately by the mid 1800s this became less of a problem & simpler patterns could be used. The mechanical press helped pave the way for modern manufacturing glass techniques.

Be sure to check back next week for more information & if you’d like to learn more about glass be sure to check out the resources available at the Corning Musem of Glass & The British Museum.

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Glass Making Techniques Part 1 | Core Forming & Casting

While back painted glass is definitely one of the most modern uses & incarnations of glass, the creation & manipulation of glass has been around for thousands of years. Over then next few weeks we’ll be going over some of the techniques used by through out history to create this beautiful material we know as glass.

Core forming was one of the earliest methods used by glass makers to make glass objects & items. The underlining concept behind technique was that a shaped “core,” dipped in molten glass, could be used to give a basic form to the cooling glass & thus create a void for storage purposes. These cores were most likely made of a material like clay or animal manure that could be baked & chipped away from the cooled glass leaving a useful vessel.

Another interesting technique used by early glass makers was Casting, in which powdered glass particles were poured into a mold, as with core forming this mold was most likely 2 pieces of clay. As the powder melted more would be continuously added until the mold was full. Upon cooling the cast would be opened revealing a solid, formed glass object.  If this object were to become a usable vessel it would then need to be drilled out.

Be sure to check back next week for more information & if you’d like to learn more about glass be sure to check out the resources available at the Corning Musem of Glass & The British Museum.

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“A Day Made of Glass” – A Great Looking Future

A Day Made of Glass, created by Corning Incorporated, takes a shot at how we may interact with glass during our daily activities in a not so distant future. From interactive surfaces through the home to flexible screens & even 3D projections “A Day Made of Glass” would be any techie’s dream come true. One can only hope that most of what’s seen in the video will actually come to fruition one day & not be a glass repeat of “The House of Tomorrow

But, luckily for you a bit of that future is already be here. Enter back painted glass, the perfect way to add a brilliant splash of color & style to virtually anywhere in your house, house, or store! Kitchen backsplashes, accent walls, bathroom counter tops, shower doors, office & lobby decor or even refrigerator doors are all possible places back painted glass can bring the style of tomorrow into your life today.

So while a day filled by technology powered amazing properties of glass may still be science fiction it’s at least great to now that it’s design is making it into our homes & offices today.

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Arts & Glass! – Etsy Preview

Copper & Woodland Green Earrings by waterwaif

Now back painted glass, is a wonderful way to add brilliant spark of color & beauty to your home to brighten your day & breath new life into your home. Now wouldn’t it be nice to able to take that experience with you or place it in new ways around your home? Well you can! As the artistic possibilities of glass, in the hands of a skilled craftsman, is limited only by one’s imagination.

We’ve just so happened to find some great pieces of art over on the craft store Etsy and are two of our favorite examples of glass jewelry & art.

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Back Painted Glass Guide | Back Painted Glass

By: David Andrews

The practice of utilizing back painted glass in home decor has become more and more common in recent years. One of the main reasons for this is the popularization of premium self-priming glass paint. These paints take the guesswork out of back painting glass. They form a permanent bond with the glass by causing a molecular change in the surface of the glass itself. No primers or special treatments are necessary. The ease at which glass can now be painted has led many homeowners to undertake the task themselves. In this article we’ll cover some tips and tricks for dealing with some challenges associated with back painting glass. Continue reading

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Cool off your tabletop – Easy Project | Back Painted Glass

All content via Jeff Phillips

A back painted glass top is a quick, simple, high-impact way to add a splash of color to any room. Have a piece of glass cut to size; then use a large foam brush to paint the underside in a sky blue latex. We used 1/4-inch plate glass with a flat polished edge. Continue reading

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Fun with Glass Deco Art Pt. 2 | Back Painted Glass

Who can use glass deco paints?

Children over 3 years old and adults can make paintings using glass deco paints. The paints used in glass deco art is sticky, it is easy to attach to surfaces and get harden on hands or clothing. When the paint get in the eyes or other open body part, immediately wash it with water. Using workshop apron while painting is highly recommended.

To produce a beautiful glass deco painting, you can follow these few tips:
– Do not apply the paint too thin, put a little bit thick paint over the patterns. You must do so, because when the drying process happens, the paint will thin out by itself.

– Use black paint to make outlines of the image so that the resulting picture will look more attractive. First of all, make the outlines and let them dry in open air. After the outlines are dry, put the apply other colors.

– Remember that thicker paint takes longer drying process, but the result is better than thinner paint. Thin paint will make the picture difficult to remove from the glass / plastic and it is easily torn before being applied to another surface.

– If there is any color mistake, use paper napkin to remove it. Do so gently, then override the surface with other color that you want.

Please look at my kid and creations and my kids make art deco glass. We use AMOS Glass Deco Paints which have brilliant colors plus an attractive decorative confetti.

Did you get any ideas to add back painted glass to your home decor?

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