Two Sided Enameling

Using copper, torch, no kiln, trivits. Was successful using blue
enamel both sides, one fireing. Trying with red. Trying firing each
side seperate, and/or trying one firing for both sides. (enamel
applied to both sides first, then fired) bottom side loses color.
How do I get color on both sides?

G. Pasekoff


What kind of torch are you using? My main torch is acetalyne and it
works well for some colors, but red is tricky. I haven’t tried to
torch fire an opaque red yet. I do get some cloudy colors on the
bottom with the acetalyne. Try using Mapp gas with a hot head torch,
the kind lampworkers use. I have used that successfully on many
ocasions. As I said though I have not tried opaque red. Maybe I’ll
try a sample today and let you know how it went.


My experience is that red/orange/and yellow enamals are the most
difficult to use. Fire the piece with just a little too high a
temperature or for too long a time and they go black. Too little
heat or time and the coating is “orange peal” rather than smooth.

My experience is that torch-firing directly onto a copper surface is
difficult, except for beads. The enamel powder is blown away for
one. Also, in my case, torch firing directly onto a previously fired
piece seems to alter the colour of the enamel.

My solution has been to fire on only one side. To prevent warping
due to the different expansion coefficients of the enamel and copper
I try to find some way of building in strength to the sheet, usually
by fold forming.


Not knowing more about your problem I can only hazard a guess. Red
enamels tend to burn more easily than blues. Blues are the sturdy
enamel of the spectrum.

Last time I torch fired, about 15 years ago, I built a little open
front oven out of firebrick to help hold in heat and make it more

Anyone else have a better idea?