At present, the vases in the market can be divided into glass vases, ceramic vases, cloisonne vases, metal vases, plastic vases, etc. They have their own production methods and characteristics. Take the glass vase as an example, it is widely loved by buyers due to its fashion and transparency. There are two main methods of making glass vases: hand blowing and mechanism. But the difference between the two is not well known by people.
Materials of a glass vase
The main raw materials of glass vases are natural ore, quartz stone, caustic soda, limestone, etc. Glass vases are highly transparent and corrosion-resistant, and will not change material properties in contact with most chemicals. Its manufacturing process is simple, free, changeable in shape, high in hardness, heat-resistant, clean, easy to clean, and can be used repeatedly.
What is hand blowing?
Hand blowing is an ancient craft. During hand blowing, workers use a hollow iron blowing pipe about 1.5m long, one end is dipped in glass liquid (picking material), and the other end is a blowing nozzle. After picking the material, roll it evenly on the rolling plate (bowl) and blow air to form a glass frit, which is blown into the product in the mold; it can also be freely blown without a mold, and finally knocked off from the blowpipe. When large-scale products are formed, it is necessary to repeatedly pick and roll evenly to collect enough material.
In China, the excellent manufacturers of hand-blown glass are mainly located in Shanxi, and most of the manufacturers there have rich experience.
Features of hand-blown glass
As the airflow flows inside the molten glass, it will drive the glass to produce a streamlined texture, and a small number of air bubbles are clamped in the glass(which is inevitable), which becomes the only difference between artificial blown glass and machine-made glass in appearance, making artificial blown glass more ornamental.
Hand blowing is not limited by machines and molds, so it has a high degree of freedom in shape and color, and the finished product often has a high artistic appreciation value.
Hand-blown glass is only suitable for small batch production, in contrast, machine-blown glass is only suitable for large batch production.
Since hand-blown vases are not mass-produced, but carefully crafted one by one by workers, they are relatively more artistic and collectible. At the same time, it requires at least two people to work together, so the labor cost is high.
Tips for hand-blown glass making
(1) The homogeneous material should be uniform. The uniform distribution of the shot glass in each part mainly depends on whether the rotation speed of the blown iron pipe is appropriate. If the rotation speed is too fast or too slow, the local thickness of the product will be uneven;
(2) The blowing time and blowing volume should be just right. Excessive blowing will make the product too thin and the size will be too large; otherwise, the end will be too thick and the size will be too small. Therefore, the right blowing speed and the right blowing force are the keys to ensuring the size of the product.
(3) The weight of packing material should be basically the same every time because this molding method mainly depends on hand feel and experience. The viscosity of the glass liquid at the top of the crucible is different from the viscosity of the glass liquid near the bottom of the crucible, so pay special attention when picking materials.
Hand blow molding is labor-intensive and difficult, but it can last for thousands of years because of the flexibility and artistry of producing such products. So far, it is still an important molding method in the glass industry.
Maintenance of glass vase
Whether it’s a hand-blown vase or a machine-made vase, it needs maintenance. The maintenance of the glass vase is to maintain its normal use time or even prolong its use time. The transparency and brightness of the glass are very good. In the process of daily use, when cleaning the glass vase, the first step is to soak the glass vase with water, then put an appropriate amount of salt on your fingers, and use your fingers to gently wipe the vase in one direction. As the salt is slowly melted by the water, the dirt on the glass vase will gradually disappear. Finally, clean the glass vase with clean water, and it will return to the same transparent and bright as before. Usually, if you see the bottle body dirty, just wipe off the dirt with a damp cloth. At the same time, it should be noted that the flowers and water in the glass vase should be replaced frequently, and the glass vase can be cleaned by the way when changing. In this way, the glass vase can be used for a long time.
Packaging of glass vases
In order to ensure that the goods can safely reach the customer, the supplier of the glass vase will carry out a good packaging of the vase, which is mainly divided into the following categories:
1. Molded foam(also named Polyfoam). This is the safest way of packaging, but at the same time, it will greatly increase the volume of the goods and increase the international shipping cost. Because polyfoam usually makes each side of the vase package larger than the original size of the vase by about 5cm.
2. Bubble bag/ bubble wrap. This is also a good buffer material, which can greatly reduce the damage rate of goods on the way.
3. Wooden frame. If the supplier is not confident about the packaging of a single product, they often add a wooden frame outside the carton so that the goods have a cushioning force during handling.
4. Pallet. The material of the pallet is mainly wood or plastic, and the wooden pallet is more commonly used, while the plastic pallet is generally used when the customer has specified requirements due to the import policy. Multiple boxes of vases can be placed on one pallet and fixed with wrapping film. Due to the large size, it must be handled by a forklift, so it is more stable and safer than workers.