Fan Light Foil Unstable Question
Copper foiled fan light
I have not long started and this is my third project. I have finished this piece ( not perfect i know) but the tab at the bottom is wobbly is there any help you can give me to solve this problem. Ann
I can see why the bottom bit is wobbling. It’s what we call a ‘Hinge Point’.
Hinge points are straight or straight-ish lines that go from one side of a panel to the other without any supporting shapes to strengthen them. They’re to be avoided in small sun catchers as they will bend and eventually fall off.
I’ve added a pink line on the second photo to show you where the hinge point is in this design. Can you see how its’ straightness makes it structurally weak?
Any sun catcher that is divided by a straight line is vulnerable. It will wobble back and forth.
Sometimes you can add another couple of shapes to secure it, but this isn’t an option here, as it would spoil the shape and be such a small slither it wouldn’t help much.
What you can do is add ReStrip along the hinge point. You’d have to remove the bottom section, re-foil and solder with the added ReStrip running across the whole width.
You could then strengthen it around the perimeter with some wire. I’ve indicated the minimum area with the green line, but if this were mine I’d go all the way around so that it looks even.
Solder the wire to the edge with solder and bead over as normal. Brass wire is stronger than copper.
Tack solder the wire all around the edge, working around your sun catcher, adding small blobs of solder to stick the wire to the edge. I’d start somewhere on the top dome, not around the tab that you want to strengthen.
When it’s all tack soldered, bead the edge to neaten it up.
I’d also practise first on a piece of foiled glass that isn’t precious. Be patient, it does take a bit of practise.