By Julius D. Heldman

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Healing cracks. The healing of cracks in small tubing is fairly simple. On small 774 tubing not involving triple (or ring) seals or lumpy glass, the glass is heated, carefully at first (a Bunsen or Meker burner makes a good starting point), and finally with a hot flame. Many cracks will heal spontaneously. It is then necessary only to blow lightly to give the shrunken hot spot its initial shape, or, if it is near an open end, to ream it out with a carbon rod. If the edges pull away, leaving a small orifice, welding rod is added until the opening is sealed, and the spot is blown as smooth as possible.

If properly done, the suck seal now requires only annealing; however, it may be necessary to work the joint (in which case no advantage has been gained over the ordinary T seal). Little chips of glass from the bubble should be shaken out before the joint is worked. If the spot has not been heated enough or if the suck is too weak, the bubble cannot be broken and the joint is spoiled. It is then necessary to heat the weld, pull off the side-arm, and start again, preferably using the ordinary procedure.

If the lump is not too large, the best way to handle the situation is to heat this lump in a small flame and blow it out into an auxiliary bulb. Blowing. In blowing glass, one uses his cheeks and gives a succession of gentle puffs rather than one continuous blow from the lungs, since control rather than excessive pressure is desired. With large pieces of Pyrex. that will remain workable for some time, and with all soft glass, it is necessary to rotate while blowing to counteract the effects of gravity and uneven cooling of the hot glass.

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