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How They Do That?


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With no disrespect to whoever made those above, I think Bo's are better...

I'm not positive I have this picture right... But, I think these are Bo's Popeyes... If so, I don't think any are much over 1/8"...

How does he do it??? I sure as heck don't know!!

It certainly isn't because he's a petite little man!!! :rolleye-842:

Ooops.... Let's try adding the picture!!! :blush:

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The smallest ones are 2/8.

The biggest are 5/16.

I can hardly believe they're marbles but don't know what else they can be,can't imagine one can play with them.LOL

Has someone seen them before so little?

winnie

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Right You are Ann JR HOOPER

very nice marbles catseye.

David

dont seem much of a choking hazard, less ya swallowed the jar

Whew! Thanks. Was driving me crazy (jeez, seems like it was something with a J, what the heck was it, etc.).

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my wife got me these peewees? from pete's site. how the heck can someone make swirl marbles this small? thanks, jack

Jack,

I've heard people call these "wee-wees" and "micro-marbles".

Fundamentally, they are simple to make. However, the extra set-up work that Bo does is what makes his "Popeyes" really, really nice.

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For a simple swirl, heat a gob of base color glass (say white), then add a touch of a second color (say blue).

Now, take the small gob and then pull a "stringer".

See video on pulling a stringer:

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With the stringer pulled, you can use the following technique:

Set your torch flame to a very fine point.

Take the stringer and hold it straight up and down.

While holding the top tip, place the bottom tip of the stringer into the tip of the flame.

The glass will melt and ball up.

When the micro-ball becomes large enough, gravity will pull it away from the stringer.

As it drops away, the laws of physics continue.

The surface tension of the molten micro-ball will pull it into a sphere.

See video of a water droplet forming:

Because the micro-ball mass is so small it will cool rapidly.

Catch the ball in a stainless steel bowl.

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Another technique:

Take your stringer and cut into small lengths.

Place one small nip into a graphite cup (marble mold).

Turn your torch down into the cup and heat the nip to molten.

Swirl the micro-sphere.

Remove from the flame while continuing to swirl.

Once sufficiently cooled, dump the "marble" into a collection bowl.

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Just because they are small, doesn't mean they should be cheap.

A lot of work goes into making these babies.

Jane Walker was one of the people I remember making these little ones when I started (circa 2001)

Jane's website: http://jane.walkerillustration.com/index.htm

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I hope I was helpful to you.

Sincerely,

John McCormick

"Shamrock Marbles"

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Basically, Make a cane. Heat twist and pull until very small in diameter, break into tiny pieces. Heat pieces while moving around on a flame proof surface. Pieces almost become round on their own

Darn it!

It goes to show one that a long winded explanation can cause one not to cross the finish line first.

Galen's response is more timely, concise and correct.

Sincerely,

John McCormick

"Shamrock Marbles"

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Winnie, are those agates faceted? Some of the smaller vintage marbles were likely intended for crafts or jewelry. I can imagine how easily those tiny "marbles" would get lost if actually played with as marbles. cool though!

I think they're machine made

I can't see they're faceted.

Sorry that I hyjacked this thread,I was too enthusiastic.

winnie

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Basically, Make a cane. <--- this is one way.

Heat twist and pull until very small in diameter, break into tiny pieces.<--- very true but sometimes they melted the cane carefully

Heat pieces while moving around on a flame proof surface.<--- most of the time, they used wood. Today we use graphite or brass.

Pieces almost become round on their own <-- not true. It's the rotation process that makes them round. Glass will gravity flatten when molten if you don't move it - remember it is a liquid.

Here are 13 little marbles I make last night because of this very interesting thread.

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Rich, I have participated in the making of the micro mibs. What I described I have watched in person. The tiny pieces were placed on fireproof 1/4" x 12"x12" asbestos like board hit with the torch while shaking moving the board and the pieces basically rounded themselves. I was a bit general in my description. And here are some of the micro mibs. I believe they are a lot smaller than you were thinking.

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