Follow-up on Turn Tickets

by Frank Fenton
Issue No. 269 - September 1995

The letter below is relevant to the recent articles on turn tickets. This additional information was very interesting and was therefore added.

Dear Mark:

Berry Wiggins has given me photocopies of pages 8, 9, and 10 of a recent publication of the Cambridge Collectors titled "Turn Tickets: Insights into the Business of Glass Making, Part One, by Tarzan Deel.

I've read his comments with interest. In his remarks about the turn ticket, he says some things which don't seem to fit what we do, so I thought it might be useful for you to know how we interpret these in our factory. It may be that he's absolutely correct about the interpretation of the numbers at Cambridge, but in the event that he's guessing at some of them, the following information might be helpful.

He makes a notation: "Shop No.: This is the area of the factory floor performing the work." In our factory, the shop number is the number that is assigned to a specific shop (a group of men working together). It would not be a specific location on the factory floor.

Next he describes the turn number. In our factory, turn #8 is the eighth turn of the week. It would be in the afternoon of Thursday. If it's a night shift operation, we would put an "A" after it and call the turn #8A. That would be the second turn Thursday night. He interprets the turn 8 notation to be the eighth time that particular item has been run. That doesn't make sense to me, but perhaps it makes sense to the Cambridge people. In other words, the number after the word "turn" identifies a specific time of the week rather than the number of times that particular piece has been made.

At Fenton, we have unfinished shops and finished shops. It's obvious to me that the particular item being made that day was a blown 12 ounce footed tumbler. A foot caster and foot straightener worked on the shop. The shop didn't need a finisher because the shape remained the same. The piece would go through the lehrs and then be cracked off and finished in the Cold Metal Department.

When you have a finisher on the shop, he's usually there to change the shape of the piece after it has been formed by the blower or presser. I notice he remarks that the handler is "unknown". In earlier years, a good many blown stemware pieces also had handles applied for decorative purposes. In that case you had to have a handler and handle gatherers working with him. On the back side of the turn ticket there is a space for handle gatherers. They would gather the glass and take it to the handler who would then apply the handle to the piece. Maybe I'm telling you things you already know, but I thought it would be worth making comments about the article before he stops writing about these things.


Frank M. Fenton