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I'm trying to create these blobs that look like they're made of glass. They might actually be made of glass.
I have tried clear adhesives, but I would love more input on good ways to craft clear and light reflective pieces.

Here is the inspiration:

glass sculpture picture

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  • I'm not sure if a transparent material is available for 3D pens, but that could be interesting.
    – Joachim
    Jul 15, 2022 at 13:33
  • There are some clear plastics for 3D printers but I don't know if they work in the temperature range of 3D pens. The nozzles are very small, so the results would be miniature versions of what's in the picture.
    – fixer1234
    Jul 15, 2022 at 17:24

1 Answer 1

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The piece in the image might be made from glass rod and a blow torch, but here are a few ideas for other materials that could work.

  • Lucite rod. Warm it carefully with a low-temperature heat gun (it will scorch if you get it too hot), and it will soften enough to bend and stretch, and will stick to itself.

  • Clear hot melt glue. You can get clear hot melt glue sticks (they aren't as clear as glass, but probably clear enough to this purpose). It will slump and flatten, so to retain the circular cross section, you need to cool it before it rests on a flat surface. People dispense the glue bead into a cold water bath to make things similar to the image.

    Another method that would probably work (haven't tested it): use a glue bead as viscous as possible by working at the minimum temperature at which the glue flows. Most common hot glue guns have, at most, a high/low setting, but if the glue stick is multi-temperature and you extrude it on the low setting, it will be a little more viscous. Hold the nozzle a distance from the surface so the bead doesn't immediately flatten, and dispense onto a cold surface. The bottom of the bead will flatten, but the bead will retain much of its cross section on the visible part. With a cold glass (pyrex or other type tolerant of rapid temperature change), or metal surface, you can release the cooled glue by letting a little alcohol wick under the edge.

  • Clear silicone caulk. The resulting bead will be very flexible, but it will retain its shape. GE silicone caulk type I (the kind that smells like vinegar when it cures), cures in the presence of moisture. If you squirt the bead into a water bath, the surface quickly skins over, so it tends to retain its circular cross section if you don't disturb it too much. It will still stick to itself. It will also want to stick to the water container. If you use a polyethylene or polypropylene container, it will peel off once it has hardened (it will likely distort if you try to move it before it's hardened).

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