You must have been fascinated with the intricate and colorful bangles, but do you know how these bangles are made?? Here we shall discuss the interesting yet complex process of making glass bangles.
Raw glass for bangles is of the same material as prepared for other glasswares, which is taken out of the furnace through the pipes. Without removing the pipes, the molten glass is beaten to make its dimensions equal.
After this, the glass with the pipe is placed in an another furnace which has an automated roller. When this molten glass comes in contact with the roller, it starts stretching like a thread and rolls around it. In this process a spring of glass is formed. To make separate bangles, this spring is then cut with the help of a cutter of diamond. But, at this stage, these bangles have two ends, which need to be joined. Usually, this job is taken up by separate units.
The open ended bangles are given to the contractor, who takes the material to the workers for the joining process. Traditionally, this process of joining of bangles is termed as 'Judai'. Workers doing joining or Judai use simple chimney of kerosene connected with the air input, generated by simple air compressor, locally known as 'Pankha'. In one unit, as many as 15 to 20 chimneys are connected with one air compressor. Whole of the set-up is hand made.
The joined bangles pass through another process popularly know as 'Sadhai'. In this process, joints of bangles are made to look neat and straight. Here, the glass is made to melt. Application of little pressure joins both the ends. The job of sadhai is usually accomplished by women workers.
It may be noted that a large number of people are engaged with the work of Judai and Sadhai of bangles to earn their livelihood. These processes in itself forms another industry in the city of Ferozabad, the hub of glass bangles in India.
Next step is the decoration on the bangles. In this stage a bangle may pass through almost ten to fifteen hands before it is deemed fit to appear in the market. There are several ways of decorating a bangle depending upon the requirement of design etc.
To make a Kada or kanghan (a type of bangle) sometimes, several bangles are joined together through melting over a flame. Later, with the help of a thin glass stick, designs are drawn on it. Sometimes, engraving is also done on the bangles with the help of rotating grinders.
The process of decorating a bangle may be very different in case of making of multi-colored bangles. Like, for the coating of Zari, hardener and resin is mixed in equal quantity, making a paste, which is then applied on the bangle. After this, the bangles are collectively rolled over the Zari powder. To give a color to a white bangle, color is sprayed over the bangles through air compressor. Mostly young girls are employed for this process.