Lead came pyramid

by Julie Lee
(Wakefield)

I'd like to build a 3d pyramid to put in my garden so it needs to be weatherproof. I've done 3d projects with copper foil but not lead came. Is it possible?


Answer

Yes, it is possible, but it depends on how you will attach the panels to each other. If you edge each panel in U came and solder the panels together at the top and bottom, you will have a gap along each panel where moisture can get in.

If you use the technique where the three panels are joined together with H came between each panel, you will be able to putty the gap between the glass and the came to get a waterproof seal.

This technique involves laying out the three panels with H came between panel 1 and 2 and h came between panel 2 and 3, the H came along the outside edge of panel 3. You the lift the 3 panels and slowly bend them into shape until panel 1 fits into the came along the edge of panel 3. It's not as easy as it sounds. You do need to use a soft lead came (the type that needs to be stretched), not one of the newer cames that contain antimony to stiffen it. Also use a wide enough came so the glass doesn't slip out of the came as you bend it.

You will put lead around the top and bottom of the pyramid as well, so the long strips between each piece of glass will need to be cut short enough to allow the top and bottom leads to slip on snuggly. Once all of the leads are in place, solder each long strip to the top and bottom lead. After that, putty the lead and leave it to dry for several days before you patina (if you use patina) and do the finishing touches.



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