Dear Blog,

This is my first post of the New Year. It is now 8 months since I was awarded the A-N Professional Development Bursary where I have been using this blog to record the trials and tribulations with my research into using TLCs with architectural glass and it’s an opportunity to evaluate the past and to plan the time ahead.

2017 has been challenging in many ways but also an epiphany of revelations. So, what have been the bigger lessons learnt?

  • researching on the Internet alone is not enough;
  • sharing the work we are doing is vital;
  • understanding and acknowledging our own limitations and the right way to put a foot ahead;
  • opening the door of our small world – something could escape, but also something interesting could enter …

On a purely technical front, using the better quality of EVA has paid off and I am now getting far more consistency with the results. I have also started some tests using ITO coated PET film as an alternative way to heat the glass panels and to control the TLCs. The electrical aspect (e.g. terminations, calculation of voltage, resistance and size) is something that I still need to get to grips with, but I am getting there with some help. The main problem is with the the electrical connection and termination. I am not yet totally satisfied with using copper tape and conductive paint is proving to be impractical. Silver conductive paste would probably be ideal, but is far too expensive to buy in small quantities for testing. I am trying to use my charms with suppliers to scrounge some samples, but to no avail yet!!

Finally, I have now started to address developing an actual design using TLCs. I have started to acid etch the blue antique flashed glass panels for my “Wind Map” concept; winter is never the best time of the year to do acid etching because, due to the cold, the hydrofluoric acid is not particularly active and works very slowly. However, things are progressing:

I also have another idea for laminating pieces of glass onto metal mesh to create a kind of flexible glass “curtain” and I have been experimenting to find just the right size of EVA that will bond the glass to the mesh without leaving any residue escaping from under the glass.

As usual, it’s a case of trial and error (with the errors inevitably winning!!).