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  1. Today
  2. Lovely work! Thank you!!
  3. Yes, thank you!! ,!
  4. Table Top Slab Roller

    I would recommend going with a table mounted one if you can add a couple hundred more to your budget, less hassle. Baileys has one for around $750 with frame, counter-tops and canvas. I have both, bought the small one to save money and space but it's a pain to clear space and put away and pull out. Because of handles, rollers and such you have to be careful where you put it and not stack anything on it. I missed just rolling out the slab and moving on with no fuss. New studio next month will be with the larger table mounted and I am excited to retire the tabletop.
  5. I can't imagine doing it on a regular basis unless I strictly sprayed and even then probably wouldn't bother. I see bisque as the step to get the pots ready to work with. Moving 50-60 pots around to get ready for and do a glaze run (often late at night pushing a load through) would just be too fussy if I was working with greenware and it would piss me off when I lost pieces and I am heavy handed enough that I would lose pieces all the time. I just like working with sturdy bisque ware.
  6. Yesterday
  7. Ways To Make Square Forms\Urns

    I make canisters using a half gallon melk carton as a form. After crushing the sharp corners on the carton to reduce the likelihood of cracks at the corners, the carton is wrapped with two separate layers of newsprint (one to layer to stick to the clay and one to stick to the carton). A long continuous slab is the wrapped around the carton to form the vertical walls of the canister. I overlap the ends of the slab to create an obvious vertical line at the join (my aesthetic). I work with wet floppy slabs so the joins are lightly dampened with vinegar and compressed thoroughly. The photo is of a small cup made using this technique. It takes longer to prepare the form and roll the slabs than it takes to assemble the item. The photos are of a cup made with the technique.
  8. Don't make the base and the lid separately, make one box the total height of the finished box then cut the top off and inch or whatever down from the top. That way the lid and base will flow together smoothly. I would add the base and top to the square "tube", round the corners then make a registration (key) mark then cut it. Make sense?
  9. If you know a woodworker with a router it would be an easy thing to make
  10. Thank you! One question: if I’m making it from 4 slabs, what do you mean when you say make the entire box as one piece? Thanks!
  11. I like the article. I like to read things like this. It makes me spend a moment on self reflection and that's a good thing. ya know one thing I would toss into the discussion is that the nature of selling functional ware pottery for a living will, or at least can, certainly change the level of the work, often profoundly. Time is at such a premium for a full timer and more time consuming work may not sell in any real numbers and hours spent on something elaborate may not really be worth enough to a customer to offset the time. I don't know if its really fair to compare part timers and full timers for functional pottery because its such a different head. They may both have an eye to production and to artistic expression but its going to be a somewhat flipped, different mix and that's going to change the body of work. It is what it is.
  12. What are cone temperatures

    I'm sure you're right. The behaviour of heat-work can be modelled like anything else, and that knowledge used to control systems, rather like a 'virtual' cone set. But I have a feeling nagging away at me that distance is being placed between the potter and her work, another layer of abstraction which removes some of the immediacy and intuition of the craft. The first electric kiln I fired was controlled by simmerstats across three zones. Pretty much 'low', 'medium' and 'high'. You had little choice but to use cones, and spend time and thought in observation. You got to see glazes melt and heal over, you got to hold a rod through the spy-hole and see its reflection in the molten glaze. You had a connection, and you learned a huge amount by doing this. I simply don't believe that a singing, dancing digital controller can replace that. There's a pottery not so very far away from me, the Poterie du Don. It's very well known, and rightly so, for its salt-glazed ware. Lovely stuff. But I remember some years ago reading about their new kiln - a computerised gas kiln, controllable to the nth degree - including the introduction of the salt! I was both in awe of the technology, and a little saddened by the 'progress'. My experience of salt firing is throwing packets of salt through the ports, drawing rings, observing and judging. I'm not convinced that pressing buttons in the right order can replace that intimacy, or the elation that comes when it all works as it should. Just some musings, not to be taken too seriously. People have different needs, and different interests.
  13. I would make them with the 90 degree corners to start with, bevel the joining edges so there is more surface area to make a strong joint then add a very thick coil on the inside of the corners, when leather hard rasp down the 90 degrees to round them off the way you like. I would make the entire box as one piece so the lid will fit well then cut off the top section and add a flange to the lid or the base. I would also make some sort of decorative mark as a key on the outside so you know which way round the lid fits.
  14. I also would keep your price at even numbers . You can add tax to that price during the sale. I have done this for over 40 years. People these days really distain change.I actually round up or down often to the nearest quarter most of the time when giving change. The exception to this is grocery store pricing where they always end the price in 9.
  15. What are cone temperatures

    Cones measure time and temperature (also called heatwork) Since they are in kiln along with your pots they are the most accurate . Controllers recreate this electronically . These work really well but the downside is they can break but the risk is low as Neil says he has 2500 firings without cones. They use thermocouples to get the info and these can wear out and can give false readings. Type S thermocouple are the most accurate and cost the most and last longer . Most kilns use type K thermocouples. I consider thermocouples to be the weak link. In my temperature range and atmosphere (above cone 10 in gas reduction) these thermocouples are less accurate. I use platinum thermocouples. I suggest using some cones spread around your kiln and learn whats going on in all those locations before giving them up. Just as Mea says in above post.
  16. I would suggest staying away from putting cents in your handmade pottery pricing. I think the folks that buy your pottery are not responding to marketing jargon in the same way as manufactured items you might sell. I do add tax so the final price usually has some cents in it though.
  17. I make a lot of urns, but I swear, one day I can center, then I cant center for a week. So I want to make square forms. Every template I see gives me 90 degree corners where slabs meet. I want a square form with somewhat rounded corners. Does that have to be thrown on the wheel and altered? I really like handbuilding and want to start making my urns like square ones with rounded corners. Thanks in advance, nancy
  18. fixed it-they are now keeping those animals out of store
  19. I used cone packs in every firing when my kilns were new. Three per kiln load, bottom, middle, and top. Once I got to know how the kiln fires, and how to load it correctly, I found the digital controller alone to be very reliable. These days I only use cone packs right after I've changed the elements and thermocouples, just to make sure the new parts are working and I didn't screw anything up. If the cone packs in that first firing turn out as expected, I go back to relying on the controller.
  20. In addition to knowing the hot and cold spots in your kiln (mostly if you have a single controller) I find cones are really beneficial when using a new kiln, changing firing program, after changing thermocouples or changing controllers. Once everything is calibrated then I find they are useful to use to verify firings, I don't put them in every load. I also use them when doing a lot of glaze tests in a firing, I want to know fairly accurately what cone the glaze tests got to.
  21. What are cone temperatures

    General purpose digital heating controllers used for industrial heating processes only look at temperature. But the digital kiln controllers built by Orton and Bartlett (and others), which are made to be used on kilns and have cone firing settings, do figure in heatwork. That's why we use them instead of inexpensive general purpose controllers. Are they as accurate as cones? No, but they are pretty darn close and with proper calibration they can be quite accurate, and are more than accurate enough for 99% of what potters do. Digital electric kilns have a lot of fail safes, and are safer than the old manual kilns. Gas kilns are an entirely different beast, and should never be fired unattended IMO. Ultimately, you must be the one to make sure any type of kiln has shut off when it was supposed to. Manufacturers have told me that the electrical system in the kiln will fry out before the kiln bricks can melt down, but that doesn't mean you won't do considerable damage to your kiln before it gets to that point. Do you need to use cones in every firing? That's up to you. I haven't used cones in my last 2500 firings. I don't see the point in having a digital controller if I still need to mess with cones. If the kiln under-fires, the cones will tell me by how much, but they won't prevent it. Same for over-firing (under-firing is much, much more common). I know my glazes well enough that I can tell if they're under-fired, and I keep up on kiln maintenance, so I don't usually have any problems.
  22. What are cone temperatures

    The key thing is heat work. It is completely different than temperature. The kiln controller tries to estimate it by using temperature and time. But the only way to truly know is to confirm it using cones. That being said you don't need cones every firing. Once you know the kiln is firing to where you want it to be there isn't a real need to use cones again unless you want to check again, or your making changes to you firing schedule, or you suspect a problem is arising by noticing glaze differences/clay. If your firing to cone 6. I recommend replacing the cone 5 with cone 5.5, Orton sells them. I emailed them asking some serious questions about the cone 5 cone. It made no sense to me how far away in temperature it was from cone 6. They agreed and informed me that is why they make a 5.5 cone. So if your going to order some get: 5.5, 6 and 7. This way you can accurately see where your at.
  23. That exact description doesn't ring a bell. Here are some posts about pricing from the FAQ thread. Maybe it's in one of these? The current issue of Pottery Making Illustrated (Nov/Dec 2017) contains an article on pricing, written by yours truly. If you don't subscribe to the magazine, you can find the complete article on my blog: http://www.goodelephant.com/blog/pricing-work-in-pottery-making-illustrated
  24. It's wet and cold, so sitting here preparing notes for running a "Slip-Casting and Mould-Making" session at next year's Potters' Camp.

  25. Feral bowls? Must be a hoot in there at night.
  26. Dipping Pots into glaze

    Can't be a real potter yet then
  27. What are cone temperatures

    denise, thank you for the question. i had not seen the post above by Isculpt so i did not know i was, ( have been, am) considered "mean" oldlady. my education has been by experience and learning from books. i do not mean the single subject thin things that are so common today. i mean textbooks with glossaries, cone charts and other useful information. textbook seems to be a word nobody understands anymore in this world of phones glued to ears and videos of everything from how to hit a nail with a hammer to surgery. if you watch one, you are an expert. without looking at a cone chart, the reader of every word above this would not know that the cone numbers have a meaning that is not clear out of context. the numbers that begin with zero, 022, 08, 06, 04 etc, read UPWARD IN TEMPERATURE. cone 08 being cooler than cone 04. once the chart reaches zero the numbers progress in temperature from cone 1 to a cone so hot that the spacecraft tiles are about the only thing made that hot. now, someone with more knowledge will have something to criticize about this post. go ahead, that is what a discussion is. Oh, yes, there is a book proclaiming to be the "bible" which has a cone chart that is mis-labeled.
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