Plowden and Thompson

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Plowden and Thompson are specialist glass manufacturers and coloured glass suppliers for studio and beadmaking, they also manufacture for industrial, medical, commercial and recreational uses. Based in Stourbridge in the West Midlands they have been producing glass since 1922.

For the studio artist and lampworker they produce two different ranges of soft glass either with a CoE of 93 or 100 in a variety of colours both opaque and transparent.

Rods sizes are available in diameters 5-7mm 6-8mm,7-9mm,8-10mm and 10-12mm They also supply powders and chips of the same glass.

Plowden and Thompson were also very influential in the introduction of glass bead making into the UK.

They also stock Glass Alchemy borosilicate and Reichenbach 96 CoE glass.

Contents

CoE 100 Colours

The information below is a combination of Plowden & Thompson's working notes in their 2009 catalogue, and testing done by members of Frit-Happens! Generally speaking, these colours are noticeably stiffer than 104 CoE, particularly the transparent blues and greens.

Manufacturer's notes: For best results these rods should be heated in a gentle oxygen rich flame - about 3 inches away from the torch. All the colours work very well with each other even if the consistency is different.

Transparent

Stock Number Colour Properties Comments
401 Clear x7 Very soft
403 Golden Yellow Light-med amber
404 Citrus Yellow
405 Amber Use a very gentle flame - does not like being overheated
406 Light Orange
407 Clear Red Available as powder/chip only
408 Flame Red Available as powder/chip only
409 Ruby Ambery red, 'difficult' Use a low Oxy flame. Can lose all the colour if overheated. Can bubble and burn. OK in a very gentle flame. Can turn an amber colour.
410 Nile Green Rich emerald green Use a very gentle flame - does not like being overheated
411 Mid Green Rich green
412 Emerald Green Rich green, 'difficult' Slightly stiff and bubbles - mid green is MUCH better
413 Antique Green Dark green Very dark as a self-coloured spacer. Boils, but less than the blues.
414 Holly Green
415 Daylight Blue Transparent turquoise Boils easily.
416 Pacific Blue
417 Sky Blue Available as powder/chip only
418 Light Blue Rich blue, not too light Use a very gentle flame - does not like being overheated
419 Electric Blue Rich turquoise blue, stiff Likes a cool flame. Boils very easily.
420 Royal Blue Cobalt blue
421 Midnight Blue Available as powder/chip only
422 Mauve Amethyst Use a very gentle flame - does not like being overheated
423 Violet
424 Purple
425 Smoke Very pale grey
427 Gold Pink Very pale pink Can go clear if worked too long. Very pretty over a white core
429 Rose Pink Very pale pink Almost clear
430 Pink
431 Cherry
432 Garnet
434 British Green
435 Dark Amber Very dark on its own, looks good over white
436 Florida Blue
Cider Very light amber
Gold Ruby Rich deep pink Can go clear, allow to cool and then strike in the flame to bring back the rich colour.
Light Amber Eyeshell Light amber
Mandarin
Satsuma
Water Green Watery green
600 Soft Clear Soft casing cane
601 Soft Ruby Soft casing cane

Opaque (and Misty)

Stock Number Colour Properties Comments
501 Pearl White Transparent & Opaque! Looks transparent with a very slight purple tint. Turns pearl white when left to cool and then 'kissed' with a oxy reduced flame, otherwise it remains transparent. Got a slight fizz to it.
502 Diopal White Slightly translucent, soft. Does not yellow with fine silver.
503 Canary Yellow Acid yellow Stays semi-translucent, streaky. Ringed rod.
504 Egg Yellow
505 Daffodil Yellow Bubbles and pits - use in a very very cool flame and it is OK.
506 Bright Orange 'Difficult' Bubbles and pits, burnt brown specks easily. May not be visible until cooled. Ringed rod.
507 Post Office Red Rich red
508 Pastel Green Available as powder/chip only
511 Birch Green Sage/teal green Streaky.
512 Turquoise Light baby blue This looks almost encased in the rod form but when heated has a slight pearly look to it. Needs an Oxy rich flame.
513 Monsoon Blue Turquoise
514 Cobalt Opal Blue Rich bright blue, med-soft.
515 Navy Blue Available as powder/chip only
517 Grey
518 Black Black/silver Likes a cool oxy reduced flame. If the flame is too hot can bubble and pit. Turns silver with little effort. Can be burned off and brought to surface again for darker result with hints of bronze. Black outline when other colours used on top. Returns to black under encasement.
519 Mint Green Medium minty green Rough, flaky 'cellophane' surface after cooling. (May be user error!) Reaction line with reds, oranges, yellows.
520 Tangerine
521 Primrose
522 Plum Deep red Very well behaved red
523 Lavender
524 Dark Post Office Red Dark crimson
Burnt Orange Yellow-orange satsuma Streaky. Ringed rod.
Misty Orange Translucent streaky orange Easy to use, very nice colour. Rod very obviously ringed.
NT Green Light green
Pearl Violet
Post Office Orange Reddish orange May have slight streakiness. Ringed rod.
Vanilla Light browny cream, soft An ivory, darker and warmer in tone than Effetre dark ivory. Less reactive. Haven't seen a 104 colour like it!

CoE 93 Colours

The information below is taken from Plowden & Thompson's working notes in their 2009 catalogue.

Manufacturer's notes: For best results these rods should be heated in a gentle oxygen rich flame - about 3 inches away from the torch. All the colours work very well with each other even if the consistency is different. The pale transparent such as Salmon and Parisian Blue encased over opal pink and heather produces rich amethyst shades. Fire Engine Red and the Yellows should be thoroughly tested before using with other colours to avoid disappointment. The clear rods are very easy to use and encase all the colours very well and work well with the range of Dichroic sheet glass also available.

Transparent

Stock Number Colour Properties Comments
800 Clear Crystal clear A great crystal clear glass - great for encasing with a creamy texture. Very easy to control. The rod must be spotlessly clean before using. Can produce a slight fizz if overheated. Suitable for encasing over the P & T range of Dichroic Glass
801 Neon Blue Dark cobalt blue, stiff Not suitable for encasing - too dark. Makes great stringers for use on pale glass
802 Neon Green Dark bottle green, stiff Not suitable for encasing - too dark. Makes great stringers for use on pale glass.
803 Parisian Blue Pale baby blue, soft Looks great if encased over white, opal pink or heather. Will turn an attractive pale grey in an oxygen reduce flame.
804 Atlantic Blue Very pale grey/blue, very soft Can produce attractive tiny fizzy bubbles in an oxygen rich flame. If you don't want the bubbles use a very gentle flame. Very pretty subtle colour.
805 Dusky Pink
806 Pink
810 Ice Pink
812 Suffolk Green Soft Colour is not affected by an oxygen reduced flame.
813 Neon Ruby
817 Rose Pink Very pale pink A very subtle pink - could be useful for encasing
Elephant
Miami Blue
Neon Yellow
Salmon Pale pink Looks great if encased over white, opal pink or heather.
Soft Ruby Dark transparent red, difficult Can turn clear.

Opaque (and Misty)

Stock Number Colour Properties Comments
902 Banana Semi-transparent yellow, med stiff. Difficult. Bubbles and pits if not used in a very gentle frame. Work at tip of an oxygen rich flame. Can go clear if too hot and overworked
903 Sherbet
904 Pillar Box Red Crimson Use in a cool flame - bubbles if too hot. Can turn to transparent red or to almost clear.
905 Fire Engine Red Dark red, stiff, difficult Use an Oxygen Rich flame - keep at the end of the flame a nice colour once you get use to it. Don't over work.
906 Candy Pink Pale baby pink, soft Goes almost clear when heated - colour returns when cool.
907 Gold Opal Pink Deep pink Can go patchy if overheated. Stringers can appear transparent when pulled, but turns back to opaque when used.
908 Heather Deep lavender blue A lovely glass to work with.
909 Bluebell Deep bluebell blue Lovely and easy to work with - slightly streaky - can look like Lapis Lazuli. Very good with white but the colour can be patchy if use close to other colours.
910 Apple Green Crisp med green, soft Stringers can go transparent - very attractive colour.
911 Jade Green Pale jade Very easy to use and a lovely colour. Can go murky in an oxygen reduced flame.
912 Forest Green Darkish green Very easy to use and a lovely colour.
913 Typhoon Rich turquoise blue Use an oxygen rich flame - will turn orange and streaky in a reduced oxygen flame. Great colour.
914 Jet Black Black A wonderful jet black glass - very well behaved!
915 Arctic White Snow white, soft Goes clear when heated, soon cools back down to a pure white - very useful - works well with ALL other colours in the range.
916 Mango Rich vivid orange, med stiff Can bubble if too hot - great colour.
Caramel
Cream
Pistachio
Powder Blue
Tangerine Vibrant orange Work in a cool flame. Can boil if too hot but does not pit. Stringers can go transparent but returns to normal when used. Nice colour not too vivid.
Toffee
Yellow Total Sunshine yellow, med/difficult Bubbles and pits if not used in a very gentle frame. Work at tip of an oxygen rich flame. Use in small quantities - not suitable for large areas of colour. Looks good encased in clear or with Bluebell.

Further information

For further information see The Manufacturers Website

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