Obtaining Glass

I’ve always wondered what the process is for making glass. I assume it’s nothing like in the video game Craft a Mine, where you take a bucket of sand to the tallest volcano in the land, sacrifice thirty-two goats and fight a dragon-bull. Once the dragon-bull is defeated, you may present your bucket of sand to the Volcano Goddess, who rubs it with her magical hands, drinks the sand and turns the bucket into glass in thanks. I know, it’s really weird.

I think the process in the video game Terra Area makes a lot more sense. If you want to obtain commercial glazing for your town, you have to venture out to the dungeon and slay the giant skeleton boss who has four arms and shoots lasers from his eyes. Once he’s dealt with, you have to travel deep underground and obtain an item known as the strange keystone, which holds the spirit of an ancient spectre. You bring that back to town and trade it for a glazier summoner. Once you use that, the local glazier will move into your town and you can buy glass from them.

I said that it made more sense, not that it was logical.

All these video games with glass have made me wonder what the process is like in the real world. If I wanted to make some glass balustrades for the Melbourne area, what would I do? Is it as simple as talking to a tradesman and having them install one? That seems a bit too easy. And where do they get the glass from? Do they get trucks to pick it up at the beach, then drive to a factory with all these furnaces where they turn it into glass? How do they purify it so the glass isn’t all grainy like the sand? And then how do they shape it? There isn’t much about it that makes sense to me, but then again, it’s not like I’ve done any research. Maybe one day I’ll go to a glass factory and find out what they do.

– Janet