VOTE: Additional Glass Torch

I’m planning a glass ornament class next month, and it’d be nice to have two torches so multiple people can work at the same time. Two torches would also make certification classes faster and more fulfilling, possibly letting people get more practice than just the single bead I have been doing.

This torch is just slightly bigger than the one we have now, but is much more efficient with oxygen use, and can be cranked up hot enough to work borosilicate glass if anyone wants to do that:

This would also require hoses and fittings to manifold both torches off the bottles and regulators already in the hive. I expect these to total ~$150

The vote is for $400 to cover the torch, hoses and fittings, and shipping.


Kevin M.

Secretary and CNC/Machining/Glasswork Warden

Is there going to be a charge for classes that could be used to defray the cost of these upgrades?

There could be. As of yet, I have been doing certifications for free. Since we plan to post the ornament class on Meetup, it wouldn’t be hard to add a cost to it.

Either way I vote yes, but with a suggestion to ask for a donation from class attendees to cover cost of expansion.

Yep, I'll have will set it up with a few for the Meetup and figure out what a reasonable thing going forward will be.

I vote NO! I can not see spending that kind of Hive funds just for a class. It’s bad enough that we have open flame equipment in the hive. Two of them just makes things more problematic.

Just my thoughts
Dave Lear

I vote hec yes!

Dave - it would not be just for a class, it would be useable all the time. It’s also worth noting that the torch in the hive now is not mine or the hive’s it is one I am borrowing from my glass instructor back in Virginia. Getting this one would ensure we retain the capabilities even if he asks me to return his torch. We also had significant discussion about the flame safety thing when I first brought the torch in, and it was agreed that we have sufficient safety controls in place that we are good to go.

Copper - I sent you an email, let’s schedule a time to get you certified on the torch :slight_smile:

This vote is today.

I vote yes on this as well

I vote yes

I’d vote no at this time. I understand that the torch we have ins on loan, but I feel it would make more sense to wait until that equipment is requested back to purchase our own. As far as running 2 torches, I’d want to expand that work area, because as is I don’t think we’d have enough room for 2 people to safely work next to each other. And there is currently not enough room to expand that area.

It might also be my impression, but it doesn’t seem like that area gets heavy enough traffic to warrant expansion at this time. If I’m incorrect about that, then I think it would be better to push for a more comprehensive look at safely expanding the area and capabilities as a whole.

Before I can vote, I have some questions.

  1. How much of the Glass equipment belongs to Hive13? How much belongs to Kevin M? How much belongs to another third party?

  2. What is the status of the glass equipment? Long term loan? Short term loan? Donation? What might trigger a request for return?

  3. What is the total cost that Hive13 would need to approve to Own the current glass equipment?

  4. What is missing from this current setup that a real glass workspace needs? Equipment, ventilation, physical space? Could / should this fit in with welding?

  5. Is $400 just the beginning? Or is this enough for a long time?


  1. As of now, none of the equipment is Hive13 owned, the only money Hive13 has spent on glass stuff is refilling the gas tanks once (lasted about a year). The Torch (~$170) and Annealer (~$800) belong to my former teacher, Ed Francis. The rest of the equipment, gas bottles, and glass is mine, and in total cost me somewhere in the neighborhood of $1600.

  2. The current status is that it is on long-term loan, with no plans for it to leave. Ed told me he had not used the torch and annealer for approaching 10 years before he let me borrow them, and the only thing likely to trigger him asking for them back is another student mentioning they are interested in torchwork and him asking me if I still am using them. My stuff isn’t going anywhere, I like having it at the hive and making it available for everyone. My intent, in the unlikely event I had to move away from the hive, would be to put it up for a vote at that time at a depreciated price incase people wanted it to stay. The current status can be compare to that of both the mills we have in the space, the surface grinder, the thickness planer, and several other items, where they are owned by a member, but that member has no plans of taking them back while they are being used by other members, even if infrequently.

  3. Since the equipment is all still pretty much in new condition, at this point I’d want something like 2/3rd the price I paid for it all for it to become Hive13 owned, so 2/3ish of $1600, plus $1k to replace the borrowed torch and annealer would be ~$2100.

  4. The setup we have is perfectly complete. The only things I have been eyeballing as improvements are A) a full stainless steel counter/table top that covers the whole work surface and B) a fume extractor/hood. Neither are necessary for what we have been doing to be safe, they would simply be improvements that make it cleaner (the table top) or increase the capabilities of what we can do (the fume extraction would make it acceptable to do metal fuming and to work silvered color rods, which both can be bad to breath in, but we don’t have the stuff to do either as of now, and I advise all new people to not get the stuff for use at the hive). The glass stuff does NOT belong near welding/grinding activity. Lampwork is a clean space activity, it needs to stay as far as we can keep it from grinding dust and other dirty work. The general area of the hive is large enough that forced ventilation is not required, the passive air movement is enough to keep it safe (think of a highschool chemistry lab having 20+ bunsen burners running for labs, it’s fine). When I first brough the glass stuff in, these questions were all asked and answered by the leadership at that time (I had a 2 page write-up at the time addressing each and every safety concern that was raised, it later was edited and incorporated into the safety section of the instruction packet that is over by the glass station).

  5. The $400 is just for another torch, the activity is more fun as a social thing where multiple people can sit and work simultaneously while talking about what they are working on, and we have a growing base of members interested in using the equipment (I’ve got 4 people waiting on me to do a certification class). If the Hive wanted me to return the torch and annealer to Ed, that would be ~$1k to replace that equipment. If the Hive wanted my stuff to belong to the Hive13, that would be ~$1100ish (or $1600 if my offer of my used stuff was no good and only new stuff would do). There are always additional capabilities that we could look at adding in the future that would cost more money, slumping and fusing equipment, stained glass equipment, enameling supplies, etc., but that’s not really relevant to this vote or our current torch setup.

I am going to vote no. I’m super excited that we have and continue to expand into artistic areas and the glass working station is a really cool resource. But aside from the inconvenience of having to take turns while instructing a class or even one other individual the setup seems pretty “feature complete” to me. Our entire income comes from membership fees and we have to stretch that pretty far to cover expenses and improvements. I would rather see the funds applied to improving our capabilities into areas where we are woefully lacking or have nothing to show at all.

Glass Torch

  • Online

  • Yes: 4

  • No: 3

  • In Person

  • Present: 18

  • Abstain: 9

  • No: 9

  • Yes: 9

  • Verdict: Passed

correction: zero no, 9 abstain, 9 yes

Sounds like funny secretary math to me.
I demand a recount!