Lampworking is the process of melting glass in a torch to form beads, sculpture, marbles, etc. Lampwork glass beads are made by melting glass rods in the flame and wrapping the hot glass on already prepared mandrels to form various shapes that have the hole in the middle. A mandrel is a stainless steel wire anywhere from 1/16th in size on up. The mandel is prepared by dipping it in mandrel release, which is basically a flux. If you did not use the release the hot glass would stick to the mandrel and you would not be able to get the beads off.