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Posts posted by eoteceramics

  1. 18 hours ago, Min said:

    Hi Julia,

    Okay, so it's not too much deflocculant but not any at all that is the problem. There is just too much water in your slip. Casting slips contain far less water than a slip made with just clay and water and yet look just as fluid.

    There is an article about using your claybody and turning it into a casting slip here, and a short explanation of mixing casting slips here. For red earthenware I would suggest using Darvan 811. It's easy to add too much deflocc so you need to be able to accurately measure the deflocc and slip as you find the right amount to use. (Some pugged claybodies don't work well as casting slips as there can be too much bentonite in them which causes them to cast too slowly.)

    Min thanks so much for the information. Ill have a look at those links and hopefully get it sorted. Cant wait to get started!


  2. Hey Johnny,

    Im fairly sure the moulds were dry as they had been sitting in a shed for a few years, it seemed fairly waterproof. Ive looked up the mould thing and found that its overuse of sodium silicate seeped into the capillaries of the mold. This doesnt explain why the slip wasnt drying, it still isnt two days later!

    I might try cleaning with bleach then drying off in the oven.

    Cheers , Julia

  3. Hi All,

    First time slip casting .

    Ive mixed my own smooth earthenware slip to a creamy consistency and poured. I expected to leave for about an hour before removing the moulds, however after leaving overnight they are still too soft. Also there is a white mold growing on the plaster mould!. Could it be that they are too damp, I did have to clean with a damp sponge .

    thanks so much Julia



  4. On 5/15/2018 at 3:17 AM, LeeU said:

    Steven Branfman's Mastering Raku is a comprehensive wealth of information if you really want to get into it. He generally bisques at ^08 (explains in the book) and uses a commercial raku body...Sheffield has a nice one.

    thank you I have his book and am making my way through it, very informative


  5. On 5/11/2018 at 8:58 PM, Denice said:

    Why do you want to use a stoneware clay in a Raku firing?  Using a low fire clay will make your piece stronger,  stoneware will be extremely fragile at that temperature.   Denice

    Thanks Denice, first time doing this so learning fast. Im planning on adding silica sand to my earthenware clay , does that sound like the right thing to do?

  6. Hi all,

    Im very excited to be making a raku kiln, now I'm new to this method so will be firing some raku Q's at you all.

    Be prepared for some daft ones!

    • first up, Is there an ideal temperature to fire a stoneware clay to bisque if wanting to do a raku glaze firirng?
    • Has anyone a glaze recipe for a beautiful blue or green, or is there a good resource for raku recipes somewhere?

    Thats it for now, be warned I may be back!




  7. Wow 

    thanks dh Potter, Denice & Pres,


    some brilliant suggestions that I simply wouldn't have thought of. 

    Denice, I have an electric front loader and its always damp here in the west coast of Ireland, so much so my kiln is starting to rust in my current studio.

    Oiled tops, brilliant Ive always used canvas but yes so dusty!

    Thanks so much this has really helped, as always 


  8. I am fortunate to be getting a brand new studio, lucky me!

    its 32ft x 16ft and will be an empty shell.

    Im looking for peoples recomendations for setting up an ideal studio setup,  ie where to put things, dry /wet area.

    Ill be holding workshops in it during the summer as well as making my own work.

    Im looking also for the best way to incorporate a drying area.


    Thanks so much Julia

  9. Hi all

    If anyone can identify these funny brown specks I'd  appreciate it.

    They are on a white earthenware that I had fired up to 200C  over a few hours and then candled   I did this to eliminate the moisture as I had had big problems when firing before with explosions.

    I usually just bisque fire and haven't noticed these specks before. The slabs are resting on silica sand which I haven't used before either. 

    Thanks Julia 

  10. Hi all,


    I had a problem with slabs, not too thick , cracking and exploding. From posting in this forum on another thread i realized that my firing schedule was too fast. I need to drive off any moisture in the slabs.

    I have a Nabertherm B130 controller which has 4 ramps and two temp ramps.

    Im looking for recommendation for a firing schedule, that will drive off moisture. I can candle but then i cant bisque fire in same schedule as there isnt enough temp ramps.

    Any help very much welcome.

    thanks  Julia


  11. Hi again,

    Ive the kiln loaded, but due to all the good advice here I need to reschedule the firing schedule.

     I think it was heating too rapidly causing explosions and cracks.

    So I have a Nabatherm B130 controller with 4 ramps and a possible two temp points

    Can anyone suggest a firing schedule, Bisque or should I candle and cool  then bisque.?

    I cant do both in one firing given the number of ramps/ heat..... I think:wacko:

    Thanks for your time Julia

  12. Hi Charlotte,

    Thanks for all that information.

    Its good to know, Im nervous about firing the tiles in fact theyre still drying. I dont want to risk firing too soon and have the disaster I had last time.

    Just a quick question, do you use silica sand under the tiles to allow movement. I got some recently and havent used before. Not sure do I put an evn layer under the tile or little piles.

    Thanks Julia


  13. Thanks to everyone who has taken the trouble to help out with this.

    Im sort of self taught when it comes to the technical side of things which is why Im making mistakes.

    In response to your comments.


    I was always under the impression that air bubbles / trapped air causes explosions! thanks for the info that it doesnt.


    Yes your right I didnt score both sides, I'll take that on board, thank you.


    Yes Ive heard of using silica for underneath, Would I spread it evenly under the whole slab or as little even piles? 

    I thought it was preferable to allow the air /heat to circulate under the slab, which is why I was using broken kiln shelf pieces as support.

    Ill introduce pin holes through the slab where the thick pieces are, thank you.


    I dont believe the slab is that thick it about 4mm and then approx 8mm where the deco is attatched.

    Your drying method is interesting, do you have a photo of the sticks to give me an idea.

    I havent heard of the coils before but will try and see if my supplier has them. You havent heard of Scarva because they are my usual suppliers based in Northern Ireland. They make their own glazes etc, Im based in the South.

    Typically how long would everyone give a slab to dry 30 x30 cm, 8mm thick at its thickest but mostly 4mm thick. If I used Marcias method of drying on sticks and wrapped in plastic?


    I have a Nabetherm kiln, I usually keep to the programme as its always been fine before but Ill try and work out how to reprogramme to slow down the drying at the start.

    Thanks again Julia



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