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Enameling: 3M's new mini-glass brush

3M has a new (disposable) product out called a “spot sanding pen”
(part # 03181ES, UPC # 000-51131-03181-4). It is a ‘glass brush’
contained in plastic cartridge about 3’-4" long packed with glass
fibers protruding from the tip. When the glass fibers wear down;
twist the cartridge barrel and fresh fibers are extended. It is the
grit equivalent of ‘fine’. I found it in an auto parts store next
to the wet-dry sand paper display; may also be at WalMart too.


In the same vein, 3M had a pen with hook-and-loop discs of their
wonderful “Flex Diamond” polishing papers. The kit comes with the
pen, and 5 each of 4 or 5 grits – they are about 1/2" across,
allowing you to stone enamels inside concave surfaces, on complex 3D
forms, and do very careful touch-ups. I have also used them to do
precise stoning when I wanted to get back to an earlier layer of
color or to bare metal in only a few small areas.

The 3M folks will be at Rio’s Catalog in Motion in Tucson again this
year. Stop by and tell them that you are an enamelist and ask to see
the Tri-zac polishing papers for ceramics, glass, and stone – wow!
these are so fabulous for getting finishes other than the usual
fire-polish. You can make your pieces look like stone inlay, for
instance, or have a soft glowing sheen instead of that hard glassy

On a slightly different, but related note: I’ll be down the hall at
the Rio show doing my three-days-to-cover-the-universe Bonny Doon
survey class. I believe there are still two openings! This is a
fantastic opportunity and value. Tuition includes a wonderful
materials and tools packet, all of which you get to keep; lunch
every day; and 3 days of 9 to 5 boot camp [well, okay, I do give you
40 minutes to eat somewhere in the middle]. I so enjoy teaching this
subject in this venue. I get a wide range of skill levels and areas
of interest, and I love the synergy when the famous saddle maker
[there to learn more about working silver for decoration] connects
with the goldsmith from North Carolina, and they’re joined by the
blacksmith from Kansas, and pretty soon the art student gets brave
enough to pipe up with a terrific idea…and everyone goes home
with new friends, a wealth of ideas, and more inspiration than they
can carry in a bucket. I get complaints by the third day that folks
aren’t sleeping well because they keep waking up in thinking “What
if I did…” and “hey! I’ll bet I could…” and so on. They are
always floored by the sheer versatility of the press.

Lee Marshall of Bonny Doon will be at Catalog in Motion to answer
questions and brainstorm with the tool hounds. He’ll also be joining
us at the Orchid dinner, AND he has donated a 20-ton tall press to
the Orchid raffle!!! This is your chance to get the newest press
design for the price of a raffle ticket [Sam Patania’s doing the
honors]. What a fantastic opportunity! This is truly a hammer that
you need in your tool rack. This goes for enamelists, too!

I look forward to seeing everybody next week,
Anne Hollerbach