I purchased a football “Cowboy Collar” which I think will be a good way to mount and carry the glass sphere. Unfortunately, I got excited when it arrived, and put it inside the hole in my (previously cracked) sphere before I used epoxy putty to reinforce the rim. Digression: An egg is quite strong to pressure applied to the outside. To break it, you want to create a crack in the shell, and pull the crack apart. This is exactly what I did by sawing a hole in the bottom of my sphere, and then placing a (slightly compressed) cowboy collar inside of it. CREAK! The linear crack I had created when cleaning up the edge of the cut with the tile saw extended itself all the way to the other side of the sphere. At this point, I was considering switching my costume to that of Mysterio in Friendly Neighborhood Spider-Man #11-13, where his sphere gets cracked.
After searching the Internet for more glass spheres, I finally called the Pottery Barn main telephone number and was told the item (SKU number 702 1991) had been discontinued and it was not available for order over the Internet or phone. But she did mention that one of their stores still had some stock, and it turned out to be in Atlanta!
So off I drove to the “World’s Largest” Pottery Barn in the Lenox Mall. Thirty minutes later, I was impatiently waiting in an earth-toned wood-grained display of decorative junk behind a woman who was buying a 12″ candle that looked like it was a piece of an oak tree limb, with bark, and a pair of six foot tall skis that looked like they were carved by a ten year old and then left out in the snow all winter (they are meant to be decorative…). I felt better about spending $120 on three large glass silver spheres knowing that I was going to be grinding the bottom off of them and using them for something cooler them a squirrel fun-house mirror in my garden. But maybe she was actually going to use the skis….
After driving home with my replacement sphere, and the backup to my replacement sphere, and my backup to my backup sphere, I resolved to cut the hole larger so the cowboy collar would fit without compression. I am also not going to use the tile saw to clean up the edge after I make the hole, and I will reinforce the rim (and cover jagged edges) with epoxy putty before fitting anything that will apply expansion force into the sphere opening. But I’ve got a backup for my backup for my replacement sphere, so I feel much more confident about getting one of them to work without cracks! Spare no expense! I feel like a defense contractor!
Interesting note: Reading the shipping labels on the outside of the sphere boxes, they were part of a 250 package shipment. I wonder if that was the only shipment that PotteryBarn ordered…if so, I own approximately 1.6% of all Pottery Barn “Silver Sphere Object Large”.