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Topics: Cleaning, Bead Holes

Q.
How do you clean the release agent out of glass beads?
- Kaaren
A.
A bead reamer and water can clean out the release inside glass beads. Fill a shallow bowl with water and put on safety glasses. While holding the bead under the water, insert the reamer into the hole of the bead then carefully move the reamer with a quick up and down motion. Flip the bead over as you make progress so you are cleaning the hole equally from both sides.

There are also reaming bits you can use with the rotary tools. The cleaning process is the same as doing it with a bead reamer but will go much faster, just use caution. If the bit catches the bead while you're holding it, let go of the bead and turn off the drill. Remove the bead from the bit and continue.

This process will also work when enlarging the hole of a bead or pearl. Use the appropriately sized bits for the chosen bead.

- Tammy Honaman, Author, Jewelry-Making Expert and Educator

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