Hobby Came

by Toni
(Atlanta, Georgia)

Hello Sue,


I am making angel ornaments/suncatchers for the holiday. I am trying to use hobby came. Do I use it just like foil and came each piece separately. I have used came on both arms, head, dress, etc. separately. When I try to flex, and soder the pieces together it melts. Am I doing something wrong. Thank you so much for your advise. Toni

Answer

Yes, you came each piece separately, then solder them together.

Hobby came is very thin and melts quickly. Don't hold the iron on each joint as long as you are doing right now, and use a slightly lower temp on your iron. Just make sure the temp isn't so low that you get peaks on the solder. It need to flow on the joint, but not melt the came.

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Hobby came

Do you treat hobby came the same as "regular" lead came? How is it different? Is one easier to use?

Answer

No difference other than the fact that it is thinner and melts easier. It is usually used around the edges of suncatchers. It isn't something you'd use to construct a window.

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Lead Came Sizing Question

by Dee
(Minnesota)

My husband gave me a Stained Glass Window kit for Christmas but it didn't come with an Lead Cane which is what I'd like to use. How do I know what sizing of H came or Round -- to use for the glass that I have? I see it comes in 1/4 and 1/8 and 3/8 and others. How do I choose what I'll need? Thank you :)

Answer
Although lead is used to hold the glass together, it is also used as a design element. You can vary the sizes of lead in one window if you want to add a touch of whimsey or originality.

If you want to buy one size only and the pieces of glass are larger than 1 inch square I'd get 1/4", especially if this is your first experience working with lead and or stained glass. 3/8 is quite wide and 1/8 is very narrow. 7/32 would be my next choice. It's a bit narrower than 1/4", but not nearly as narrow as 1/8".

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Lead Came Tape

by Jeffrey Mueller
(GA)

Sue,

I'm trying to find a product I've only seen used on kitchen cabinet glass panels. It is a half round lead came tape that has adhesive on one side and is applied to both sides of a solid piece of glass to give the stained glass look with out having seperate pieces. Do you know where I could find this product? Thanks

Answer
Do a search for Decra-Led Self Adhesive Strip, or try Michaels, AC Moores, Hobby Lobby or Dick Blick for self adhesive lead strips.

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Choosing The Right Size Lead

by Jane
( PA)

Hi! I am very new to this art and want to learn the traditional method using lead came. However, my first real project is going to be a transom. I am having difficulty gathering the supplies I need based on not knowing what size of came to use. I will have a bevel cluster in the center and was thinking I should use a smaller size around these pieces and a larger elsewhere. How about whether it is a flat H or a rounded? Is there any greater degree of difficulty using one versus the other? Thanks, and I must say you and this site has been a godsend! I check it every day and read and reread everything over and over! God Bless You!

Answer

Hi Jane,

The size of your lead is based on the design. For me, I use my lead lines as part of my design. Lead is so much more than just something to hold the pieces of glass together.

Now for more specifics:
Most traditional/victorian designs will look more authentic with flat faced lead. However, round faced lead will look just as nice, and I'm quite sure the majority of people looking at your panel will not know if it looks authentic or not! So, use whatever you please.

Modern designs are usually done with a round face lead.

I tend to use more round than flat just because i like the look of it. One is no more difficult to use than the other.

As for the size of the lead (face width), you need to go with whatever you think looks best with your design. You can use several face sizes in one project.

If you have something you want accented, use a wider face, very small pieces need a narrower face. However, don't go any smaller than 5/32" for your first few projects. Your cutting needs to be extremely accurate to use such a narrow face.

If you really just want some basic sizes to use, 7/32" and 1/4" are the 2 most common sizes that people buy for internal construction. The border lead depends on what you are going to do with the panel. U came is fine for a panel that will hang on it's own. H came is better if you are going to frame the panel or install it in an existing opening.

You can go Here to see the face profiles. It helps when you can actually see what they look like.

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Hobby Came

by Rita
(Riverton WY)

How Do You Apply Hobby Came

Answer

Hi Rita,

To start, make sure the beaded solder doesn't go right at the edge of your foiled piece. Stop the bead about 1/8 inch from the edge. This will give room for the hobby came to slip over the edge of the suncatcher.

Slide the hobby came over the edge of the foiled piece, starting at a solder joint. Continue pushing it on, all the way around. When you get back to the start point, mark the came exactly where you want to cut it off. Pull the came off enough so you can cut it. Using an exacto knife, gently cut the came being careful so you don't crush it. It works best to have it laying on the table with the flat side down, leaving the channel facing up. If you run the exacto knife blade through some pariffin wax, the blade will slide through the came with ease. Once the came is cut, push it back on making sure the two ends join up with no space between them, or no overlapping.

Now you can solder the came to your suncatcher wherever it meets a solder joint. You want a slightly raised bead of solder at each joint. Put a small, thin layer of solder over the spot where the two ends meet, enough to fill in the joint, but not enough to make a raised bead. Be careful when soldering the came, it is thin and melts easily. It would be best to do a test piece first, to make sure your soldering iron isn't too hot.

If there is a gap along the edge of the came, after you have applied and soldered it, gently push it down with a lathekin all the way around the suncatcher. Also, if the came is a bit tight when you are putting it on, you can open it a little more by running your lathekin along the channel before you apply it.

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Hobby Came??

by Cassandra
(Bundaberg, Australia)

Hello Sue,
I know you don't work with lead-free came but I was wondering if you may know of (hobby came). I have not heard of this came and I have never seen it in any glass supply shop in Australia.
I've often seen pieces which have a nice shiny finish, such as on Etsy and I know there is electroplating but for the small time crafter could they be using this product?
I came across it on the glasscrafters site. It comes on a roll and they claim it does not oxidize and stays shiny silver. The brand name they have is Diamond Lead-Free Came.
On some smaller projects I do it would be great to have a fine lead that stays shiny silver.
Does it come by any other name than hobby came?
What are your views on this product?
Thank you Sue :)

Answer

Cassandra...you asked me a question that I can't answer. I've never put came around suncatchers. I've seen hobby came, but I've never really taken any notice of brands, just the fact that it's available.

Hopefully someone reading this has used it and can help. If so, they will leave an answer in the comments section below.

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Size of Lead Came

by Margaret
(Marble Falls, Tx)

What is the smallest size of lead came. I would like to use RH came, but I need it to be smaller that 1/4". Is there 1/8" RH came?

Answer

Here are 2 web site that will show you all of the available sizes of lead came:

Lead Profiles and Sizes

Download the PDF file for very detailed information.

Profiles and Sizes of Lead
Download the 18 page catalog for sizes and profiles.

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So many sizes and very hard to store.

by Antoinette
(Florida)

Hello! I am finally getting back into stained glass art and the one thing is I don't know the best way to store lead came. I have some very long pieces and they are twisting and turning. Should I cut them down? Is it bad to hang the long pieces and also I get agitated with sizes. Teaching myself and many times I don't know what size to use.

Need help in Florida.
Thank you :)

Answer

I store my lead two ways. I have a 6 foot length of PVC pipe with a cap for each end. I store the long pieces of lead in there. I have shorter PVC pipes to store the shorter pieces of lead. Empty lead boxes can be used for storage as well. Ask your local stained glass supplier if they have any empty lead boxes that you can have. The boxes must lay flat, but the PVC pipe can be stored standing up.

As for the size of lead to use. Lead should be used as part of the design not just something to hold the glass together. You can use 2, 3, 4 or more different sizes in a panel. You might want wider lead along a tree trunk, narrower lead around a leaf. perhaps you want to highlight a certain part of the design. Use a wider lead around that part. With wider lead you can cut the face to give a project an unique look. Cut the face so it looks like it's flowing, or perhaps in zig zags all along the face of the lead. Cutting the face usually works best with contemporary designs, but I've seen some beautiful lead design in scenes and floral patterns. The sky's the limit on how you can use your lead.

If you want to use only one size in a panel, 1/4", 3/16 or 7/32" will work well. If you are using a variety of glasses in your project, make sure you get lead with a deep enough channel to accommodate the thickest glass. Putty will fill any excess space around the thinner glass in that same project.

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Dont know what kind of lead came to use.

by Chelsea Spells
(Lake Park, GA, USA)


I am new to stained glass and I am really confused about lead came. I know I am going to need it to make my suncatchers and my panals but I have no idea on what type to get or what size. Please help! Just a general size that I need to have all the time would help. I want to get rolling in my stained glass making when all my other supplies arrive.

Chelsea


Answer


Flat H leads are generally used as border leads in windows, while round H leads are used for the inside seams of a panel. If you are going to border the edges of an unframed piece, use U channel. The most common leads used for building panels are 3/16" or 1/4" round H and 3/8" or 1/2" flat H. Those measurements refer to the size of the face of the lead. The size of the channel is usually a standard 3/16" which will accommodate most types of glass. The thickness of the glass and the design you're using should be considered in your choice of lead came.

There are generally two shapes of lead came. H lead has a double channel and is primarily used between two pieces of glass or as the perimeter lead especially if the piece is going to be installed as a window or if it's going to be framed. U lead has a single channel and is used for the outside border of mirrors, suncatchers, etc. The face of either type of lead came may be rounded or flat.

For copper foiled suncatchers you can either edge bead them with solder or use 5/64" hobby came. It is a very small U came made used for suncatcher borders.

You might get more help form my copper foil and lead came tutorials: Copper Foil Tutorial
Lead Came Tutorial

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What Size of Round H lead do most Artist use

by Rhonda
(Foley, Alabama USA)

I am getting back into glass after not doing it for a while.I have a nice size lead and a small size for intricate pieces. I cannot figure out what size it is.I have read all the ways to do this but still come up wrong.I am ready to place a order for lead and I don't want to get the wrong size.Can you tell me what size lead is used the most in windows.

Answer

Measure the lead across the face. If it's slightly rounded, trace along both edges, the measure inside your traced lines.

I suppose the most common lead sized are 1/4" and 7/32".

Here are two web sites that might help you figure out what size lead you have:
Profiles and Sizes of Lead

and Lead Profiles and Sizes This one is a PDF file, so you'll need Adobe reader or Sumatra PDF on your computer in order to download it.

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How to handle lead came on small glass pieces

Is there any way to make lead came easier to handle and put around small glass pieces.

Answer
Use a smaller size lead for smaller pieces. Cut a length that is just a bit longer than what you'll need to wrap the glass. It is easier to work with smaller pieces than a 6 foot long piece of lead.

Read my tutorial on leading up circles and diamonds. Although you might not be working with either shape, the techniques used in the tutorials don't necessarily need to be used for only circles and diamonds. They will come in handy for quite a few leading up problems. The tutorial are here Circles and Diamonds

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