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Isculpt

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  1. I don't know how I've missed the forum FAQ and Help Topics all this time, but thanks Mark and Pres for directing me to it. A wealth of information about sooooo many things awaits me!!!! jayne
  2. Thanks, Mark, for explaining the logic of grooving the backs of the tiles. With high humidity, anything that encourages drying is helpful. Mark & Big Lou, do you score the tiles even if you're going to place them between sheet rock? Do you weight it with 25 lb bags of clay or will something less heavy do? I have gallon bags of sand that I use for weighting some things.... Pugaboo, that's a good idea about the curved dish.....
  3. Wow, what a ton of information. Thank you all. I'm starting to think I should buy an extruder book first and the extruder second. I do have an option to borrow an extruder from a former potter, so maybe that's the way to go before I buy so I can figure out what I really need versus what I want -- which as usual, is everything! Jayne
  4. The humidity here is a solid 98% unless it's a 100%, so I'm having trouble getting reprocessed clay to dry into useable form. I have two five-gallon buckets full of dry clay scraps and I want to turn it into paper clay. I don't mind the pulverizing, and then soaking the clay bits and adding wet shredded tissue paper, and then mixing it all with a mortar attachment on my drill -- but then trying to get it to dry is maddening. In the past, I've used 2x4 sheetrock slabs covered with cotton fabric (to keep the sheetrock paper from loosening and sticking to my clay). I lay those on sawhorses set up on my back porch with a ceiling fan running constantly. The clay is poured out and smoothed to about 3/8". But then I spend a couple weeks trying to manuever past all those clay-covered sheetrock slabs on my porch while insects get stuck in the damp clay! Is there a better way?? I read last week about pouring clay into an old pair of jeans, but I wasn't sure if that was serious or not! I've read that people are now allowing homemade paperclay to dry into sheets for easier storing and then rehydrating and wedging as needed. I don't see that EVER happening at this humidity level, but I'd be happy to be able to achieve workable clay in a reasonable amount of time. Bringing the sawhorses and clay into my studio is doable, but the humidity there isn't much better! Any ideas??? Jayne
  5. Okay, thanks, I'll try 3 coats of kiln wash and make some plates. My concern about the plates is getting them flat enough that they don't cause problems for the sculptures that will be sitting on top of them. But stilts on the plates will probably solve that issue? As for Big Lou's forked backside (well, that sounds weird) -- I've read that grooves in the backside make the tile less likely to warp, but I'm darned if I can understand how making the two sides unequal results in equal drying and thus less warping! Jayne
  6. Thanks for all your answers. I don't know if it's just me, but I have a hard time finding anything by typing a subject into the search box here. I typed in "extruder" and got nothing. After posting and reading your answers, I followed Pres' advice and tried again, and all it pulled up was my question and your answers. So, Pres, how do I "check the strand in the FAQ on extruders"? And what is a Clevis drive?
  7. I read here on the forum that when different glazes are layered, they can become runnier than they would be if used alone. I recently attended a little Amaco workshop where Potters Choice glazes were applied one atop another. I have no experience with these glazes, other than on flat test tiles where only a few spilled over. I've just gotten new shelves for my kiln and I wonder if simply applying the kiln wash that came with the kiln will protect the shelves, or should I make a flat clay "plate" to put my work on so that drips don't affect the shelves? Jayne
  8. I have never used an extruder, but I've read about them and admired images of things made from them. I really dislike making coils -- I don't have the touch (or perhaps the patience) to make uniform ones. So I'm thinking of buying an extruder for that purpose to start with, and eventually to actually make useful shapes - square tubes for small boxes or large tubes for the beginnings of human forms. Any suggestions as to extruder size, manufacturer, material, and a basic set of dies? thanks, Jayne
  9. UPDATE: I received a call from Bob Haugen, president of Olympic Kilns. The delay of 8 months was not of his doing - or not doing, a fact I was well aware of. He has promised to deliver and install the new kiln lid himself. You can't ask for better than that. Thanks again to all of you who advised me to have it replaced. Jayne
  10. Thanks for that link. It looks like I'd pay nearly $400 for a lid plus shipping on 120 lbs AND I'd have to install it. I agree; not a good deal. Jayne
  11. Thanks to all of you who weighed in. I really appreciate the advice. I want to make life easy for others, but it sounds like in this case it would be a foolish sacrifice on my part just to save the seller inconvenience. Jayne
  12. Neil, thanks for weighing in. You won't be able to see the crack that was the original issue because it was repaired with mortar which totally masked it. The original large crack actually radiated from the screw. The hairline crack now running front to back on the lid has nothing to do with the original crack. It seems unanimous that I need to replace the lid. I'll share this consensus with the seller in an email right away. I don't expect any trouble, but we will see. Jayne
  13. Schmism, Emails about the lid were exchanged between Jinny, the owner of the ceramics supply business and myself, but the final resolution was communicated verbally. I know, I know to get this stuff in writing but she's been in business a long time and I trust her. She spoke with the owner of Olympic and was promised a replacement, but told that it would be delivered in several months at their convenience. She was emphatic that she didn't want her kiln installer to replace the kiln lid, but rather someone from Olympic, which makes things even more complicated for Olympic. This lid came with the metal parts already attached but I'm guessing a replacement would not.(?) To add more information, when I contacted her recently about the lid, she offered me $100 credit in lieu (no doubt to save some hassle with Olympic). But my concern is that the crack could reappear and get much worse. Mark, I've attached photos of the hinge and the location of the original crack which was at the front of the lid where the two left-hand screws are holding on the metal plate. The crack was on top, didn't go all the way through and was clearly caused by the screw being driven into the brick. (As a woodworker, I've seen that same thing happen when a hole isn't pre-drilled in hardwood before a screw is driven in.) The seller repaired it with kiln mortar before delivering it because it was understood that I'd be using it until the replacement came, so there is no trace of the original crack. In one photo you can see a crack on the inside of the lid, but it doesn't originate at that screw, so I guess it's not related.... What I'm wondering is the likelihood of the crack reappearing after all these months, and how serious (costly) it could be. I am assuming that a crack that went all the way through the brick, top to bottom would necessitate replacing the lid for someone like me who is light years away from being able to repair a kiln? Thanks for any advice.....Jayne
  14. When I purchased a large top-loading Olympic kiln last summer, it arrived with a crack in the lid where the handle's screw had been run in, apparently without pre-drilling. The crack didn't go all the way through, and I was promised a new kiln lid if I would accept delivery of the kiln. The lid has one of those hinges that goes all the way down the back of the kiln, which I am told is not easy to replace. Before delivering the kiln, the merchant from whom I bought it repaired the crack with kiln mortar. It has been 8 months and the crack has not re-appeared. I know the seller is hoping I'll forget about it, and truthfully, I'd like to. I fear that things may go from (not-too) bad to worse if the lid is replaced. Given that the crack hasn't reappeared, should I feel relatively confident that it won't? Or am I being foolish not to replace it? UPDATE: I received a call from Bob Haugen, president of Olympic Kilns. The delay of 8 months was not of his doing - or not doing, a fact I was well aware of. He has promised to deliver and install the new kiln lid himself. You can't ask for better than that. Thanks again to all of you who advised me to have it replaced.
  15. Wow, Pres, those wedding jars are fabulous. I hope neither couple ever gets divorced because there's gonna be a nasty custody battle! Seriously, a wedding gift that wonderful is well worth the wait, as I'm sure your friends would agree. And thanks, Rebel, yeah it's really a teapot. The head and chest of the farthest girl lifts off so water can be poured in.. I love your your carved piece and the one with flames too. It made me want to create something with flames! When I was a wood carver, I made a wall piece with an angel hanging upside down over flames. The first time I took it to a show, a woman stood just outside my booth and yelled "blasphemy". I pointed out that just above the flames was a spigot and holy font in case the flames got too high. She was not amused.
  16. Thanks for the suggestions, Babs and Oldlady. So far so good on the tile. It's drying on a mesh rack with sandbag weights on the corners, which tend to want to turn up. But if it cracks again I'll use the "no score Slip" found on the web, since I can't find that post here. (Maybe it's just me, but I have a devil of a time finding posts on CAD using the search box or even the advanced search.) And Babs, after watching a video about making a damp box, I'm going to do that very soon. The recipe I found is on "Clayfolk" and it is : SCORE NO MORE Pat Horsley's "Score No More" slip and repair paste is nothing short of miraculous 1000 grams of your clay body in dry form 20 grams Custer Feldspar 20 grams Bentonite Jayne 20 grams Gum Arabic 1 teaspoon liquid Darvan It is IMPORTANT to disperse the Gum Arabic. Pour boiling water over and add water up to a slip consistency. A blender really helps, then add Darvan (LIQUID) when it is well mixed. Add a tiny bit of bleach if you will store it to keep odors down.
  17. Oh, and back on point, I'm working on a teapot that sold 3 years ago at a teapot show. A customer of the gallery that sold it requested I reproduce it, more or less. As I work on it, I wonder how the heck I made it the first time! It was 3 years ago and I had just started in clay and I knew even less than I know now. It's a pain in the a** and I'll be glad to finish it....if I ever do. Also, I'm working on a tile that keeps breaking...and it's not even dry yet. I've put it back together with paperclay twice. It looks like this one is going to hold....I hope. It's for a young friend who is nearly finished with chemo for ovarian cancer. It HAS to be ready and in one piece so that I can hand it to her when they remove the IV for the last time on the 5th of August! IT SIMPLY HAS TO !!!! Jayne
  18. Stellaria, I'm still so freaked out about the echidna with the four-headed um, boy parts, that I'll have to work my way up to the octopus and the sea pig..... Jayne
  19. This has gotten way off point, but out of curiosity I just Googled 'echidna' and found a bizarre you tube video entitled True Facts About baby Echidnas" that starts "The echidna was created 54 seconds after God created marijuana..." Oh my, the things I have learned reading the ceramic Arts Daily Forum!!!!
  20. Thanks, SD, I'll check into the Riverside Grit from Highwater. And John, since you say it's fun to wedge grit into clay with one's feet, I may try teaching these old dogs a new trick. And Shirley, you reminded me that there is a stoneware clay that when underfired produces a beautiful Caucasian skin color. Maybe I'll try wedging some grit into that clay -- using my feet, of course! Thanks, all ! Jayne I just remembered that I have a bag of volcanic ash on hand. How does that compare to grog as an additive to clay to enable it to withstand thermal shock?
  21. John, I wish that I could wedge clay, let alone wedge in a lot of grog! After nearly 20 years as a professional woodcarver, followed by 10 years in residential cabinetry work, my wrists are very nearly useless. After falling two years ago and breaking all the bones in the left wrist along with the bones in the forearm, just hefting 25-lb bags of clay takes a toll. In order to be able to work in clay, I have to use it straight out of the bag and when I want to reuse still-wet scraps, they go in the clay bag and I use my feet to smush it all together. I don't think I can train my feet to wedge in grog....although I'll bet someone somewhere has figured out how! Jayne
  22. Lots of information to process! John, I use raku clay because I occasionally choose to pit fire the work. I like to have that option, and I don't always plan ahead on the finishing technique. Too, I prefer not to have lots of different clays in the studio -- too easy for me to forget and fire a cone 2 clay to cone 6. (Not happy results on that one!) Further, I've found that I like working with raku clay more than any other. It dries faster and it has more body than the earthenwares and stonewares I've used, so sculpting can proceed without lots of waiting around for parts to dry enough to support the next part. The downside is that my Highwater raku fires white and sometimes it seems kind of sterile unless I do a lot of finishing. I thought that a nice tan or light brown raku might give me the best of all possible worlds, jayne
  23. lidded boxes frames tiles simple animals & birds as decorative ornaments jewelry pendants business card holders, desk accessories nonfunctional decorative teapots small reliquaries to hold written prayers/thoughts lamp bases wall-hung decorative platters Visit Pinterest for a zillion ideas. I have created a board of functional and non-functional pieces that I've found online that appeal to me at http://www.pinterest.com/jayne1055/a-ceramics-functional-decorative/. There are many other boards on Pinterest with many other ideas. Jayne
  24. I haven't been able to find brown raku clay anywhere locally in the Carolinas or even online, but a friend in South Dakota tells me that she bought some from a school which had placed a large order. Does anyone know of a source for moist brown raku clay? Or could I used a brown stoneware with lots of coarse grog and have the same benefits of raku clay? Jayne
  25. Well, Babs, THAT cracked me up. You certainly know how to put things in perspective! Jayne
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