A glass muller is a grinding tool that has a round top attached to a curved handle and a wide base. It is generally used to crush and grind pigments into fine particles and to properly mix the ground pigment particles in the oil, water, or other liquid bases. Generally, a glass muller is approximately 8-10 cm in length. The base of a glass muller is about 10 cm in diameter. The base of some of the glass mullers contains tooth on base that enables effortless and even crushing of pigment particles. The handle of the glass muller is curved to provide the user with a comfortable grip. Tempered glass, soda-lime glass, borosilicate laboratory glass, etc. are mainly used for constructing a glass muller.
Working of a Glass Muller
To grind the pigments with the help of a glass muller, firstly one must ensure that the tool, slab, and sample are clean and dry. Place the sample on the grinding slab and start hitting the solid pigment sample repeatedly. This breaks the pigment into smaller pieces. When the pigment is crushed properly and a fine powder is obtained, add a few drops of the base solution and move the glass muller in a circular direction to make a paste.
Uses of a Glass Muller
1. One of the most common uses of a glass muller is to make oil paints.
2. Violin and other musical instrument makers make use of glass mullers to mix water and oil stains into varnish and shellacs.
Safety Measures while using a Glass Muller
1. User must make sure the glass muller and the base slab are clean and dry before use. A dirty glass muller would contaminate the sample.
2. Store the glass muller in a safe and clean environment after use.
3. While crushing and grinding pigments with the help of a glass muller, always make use of wearable protection laboratory equipment such as goggles to avoid injuries and ensure safety.
4. Timely and periodic retexturing of the glass muller and the grinding slab should be done.