The Dale C. Maley Family Web Site

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Geometric blues stained glass

Someone asked me to design and build a geometric blues type stained glass panel.  They gave me this photo of what they were thinking.  Fortunately, they did not want the massive size stained glass shown in the photo, they only wanted the center section of the big panel.

I used Google's image search, using this image, to see who did the stained glass.  I only found this Pinterest link, with no attribution to who the stained glass artist was.

On the bathtub photo, I am not sure if there are supposed to be two birds in the bottom corners, with their beaks being the solder joint?

I put the bathtub photo in Sketchup, and extracted just the center section of the panel. The first option has a square top. The 2nd option has a rounded top.

August 2018 Update

The person that wanted this panel, has not had time to get back to me with the measurements of the window the panel will hang in, so I can't finish the design of the stained glass panel and start building it.  I might go ahead and build a panel and donate it to a charity auction.


My stained glass instructor said that any panel over about 1 foot by 1 foot in size should be framed in wood.  For this panel, I plan on using 1-3/8" wide red oak to frame it. The groove in the frame is deep enough to hide the 3/8" wide the wood frame adds about 1" to each direction of the panel.

The Falling Leaves panel I built for last year's auction was 8x16 inches, which seemed about the right size of panel for this auction.  I need to use Sketchup to scale the panel to about 8x16 is currently much bigger.

September 2018 Update

I decided to keep, and not donate, my Fairbury old City Hall stained glass panel.  So, I will build the 2-blue color geometric panel to donate to the upcoming auction.  I went to Hobby Lobby and found the 3 types of glass needed for this project.

Pattern Error

When I design a pattern, I try to avoid any pieces that are smaller than a 1/4" in width.  If you get smaller than this, the copper foil will cover up all the glass.  I forgot to check this pattern before I starting cutting glass.  Once I got started cutting glass on the bottom, I noticed the 2 triangles that were too small. I revised the design, making one side of the triangle just under a 1/4" in length.  Shown below is the revised and larger triangle that I used.

Revised Pattern

Starting to Build

Panel finished and in the Sun

Defect Finder

I have a cardboard box LED light box, left over from previous experiments with LED lighting.  Just for yucks, I put this panel in it.  Then took a photo.  When I reviewed the photo, I was surprised at how well the little defects in the solder showed up!!!!!!!!

On previous projects, I never really did this quality check.........unless I saw a major problem when handling the panel......then I fixed it.  I should probably use this light box as an error checking tool on future projects.  Most of the solder swirls were removed with an exacto knife.  In a couple of cases, I had to hit the solder again with the hot iron to fix......then patina those spots again.

I do gently rub my hand over both sides of a panel, then remove any sharp edges, usually with a 1/2" drum sander on the Dremel.

Here is the panel after I fixed the light box errors.

Red Oak frame

I made the 1-3/8" inch wide red oak frame, the same as the last 2 projects I have done.

-plane from 3/4" to 11/16" thick

-route one side using special bit

-route other 2 rounded edges

-4 passes with 5//16" straight bit to get 3/8" deep

-round over outside edges with 1/8" inch roundover bit

I used the brass hanging pieces from, 2 mounted on the top sides of the oak frame.  I really like these type hangers.

Framed and in the sunlight - hanging from a tree

Closing Thoughts on this Project

This was a fun project, and it will make a great auction donation item.

I did mark my name and date on the zinc frame, on the bottom, using the Dremel and a diamond the extension cable. The extension cable makes a lighter piece to better control your writing, versus the heavier Dremel.