totems questions

ravencajun Zone 8b TX(8b)April 24, 2012

Hi!! this is my first post here, I am usually found over on Computer Help trying to help folks with pc problems. But I recently discovered this forum and have fallen in love with some of the projects here.

So I am trying my hand at some garden totems. I have some questions for those seasoned pros here.

I got the GEsilicone 2 clear like it has been mentioned here, I got some glass items, I have my plan outlined for 2 totems. I am not accustomed to using a caulk gun, how the heck do you make the stuff stop coming out of the tip??? I am losing a lot of my silicone.

2. do you silicone one piece at a time let it dry then add the next piece or can you do say 3 or so pieces together let that dry then continue or do you do the whole thing at once.

3 How long does it take that silicone to dry between the glass?

4 When are they safe to take outside in the elements and know they are "cured"?

5. I have some of the plates or bowls right side up which means they will catch water will that mess anything up, will it cause the caulk to fail? I like the idea of the water so birds could drink and I was also thinking of putting bird seed in one of them, is that ok or will the seed get icky in there when it rains and not a real good way to clean it out since it is glued on?

Ok I know I have more but I don't want to overwhelm on my first post.

Thanks so much for any assistance, and thanks for such an inspirational crafty forum. I already bought my Fleamarket gardens magazine and love it.

I live in the Woodlands area North of Houston so all of my stuff will be in very hot and dry summer temps, pretty mild winter temps.

And if you need any help with your computers or tech items feel free to come holler at me over on Computer Help.

I will post pics of my totems when done.

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Marlene Kindred

Hi Raven! Welcome...glad you've dropped in and are going to try some totems. Be forewarned....they are terribly addicting! I took mine out to put in the garden the other day and I have about 20 or so and more to make.

I tend to decide what I want first by stacking the pieces up (very carefully or they will fall...my cat tends to love to "help" me with that part!) Then, I glue about 3 pieces together and let them dry at least 24 hours before I stack those pieces together for the final gluing. I've found that helps them not to slide around as much. I let mine cure at least a week before I put them out.

I do have some that have the plates right side up and they do catch the water. You will have to clean them as mine tend to get green with algae after a while, but since you're in a hotter, drier climate, you may not have as much of an issue with that. As for birdseed, you can use that, but you will have to replace it after a long rain. If it's just a shower, often it will dry out. Or you can drill some holes in the plates....regular pottery plates are easier to drill, but they are not necessary. Just remember to put something heavy and/or wider at the base for stability so they won't topple in the wind or when the birds land on them.

As for the caulking gun, you will learn to cut a smaller hole to help control the flow. At the end of caulking, I release the pressure on the gun and either put the cap on it or stick a nail in the end or you can even just put tape on the end, but the key is releasing the pressure by pulling the back handle back a little.

Good luck and I look forward to seeing your creations!

    Bookmark   April 24, 2012 at 5:50PM
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ravencajun Zone 8b TX(8b)

Thanks so much that was very helpful. I did cut a small hole, but I was not releasing the pressure!
I found several of the really heavy microwave platters which should make good heavy bases.
Appreciate your feedback.
I will definitely post pictures.

    Bookmark   April 25, 2012 at 1:50AM
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