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About Diz

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    Pottery is my way to relax and it has gone from a hobby to keeping me 'very relaxed' as it is taking up more of my time. I enjoy mid to high fire and raku. Always like to see and try new things and that Is why I value this forum so much. Everyone shares and helps out. Thanks to all!
  1. yes , Tyler's comment makes perfect sense and I will pass it on. Thanks for the input - safety first. I appreciate the comments and help.
  2. Yes - we want the cups to break. I have a request from our local theater group for cups that will break when a toast is made. Haven't had this request before so I would like help to do it the correct way the first time (as they need them within 2 weeks). My first thought is to throw them very thin with my cone 5 clay and have both firings just go to bisque and use cone 05 glazes. Your opinions on this method or better ways to do this would be appreciated. I also have cone 10 clay available to use. Thanks! Diz
  3. Might your underglaze not be applied evenly? If so, the streaking may be caused by uneven layers of underglaze. Remember to apply more than one layer of underglaze (painted on in various directions).
  4. Continental's mid-fire white (cone 4-7) and mid-range oxidation (cone 4-8) bodies are the main clays used at our local art center. One member also uses the High-fire white (6-10) and all work well with our oxidation firings at cone 5. We use a variety of Continental glazes and also some 'scratch' glazes that we mix ourselves. Really have not had any problems with crazing. Continental used to have the shrinkage info right in their catalogs along with the clay descriptions but not now - I miss the paper catalogs - they were so convenient and held a wealth of info. Continental is very helpful on the phone so I bet a call to them will yield answers to your questions. They do have a new mini-catalog devoted to just the clays they offer - can't find mine at the moment - but perhaps that info is included in the new printing. Personally am happy to have Continental close as it is staffed by very knowledgeable potters - you have a question or a problem - they will have someone on staff who will help you solve the problem. Personally I prefer the mid-range brown for wheel work, as I like its 'tooth'. I am not one for white clay or porcelain, as to me they are too slimy on the wheel. But if you are one who uses underglazes, I like its white background behind the underglazes, better that the brown background. But that is personal preference - for my kid's classes, I prefer white for handbuilding (due to underglaze use), and brown on the wheel. Another teacher prefers white for all. Go figure... Continental has a variety of clay - and a wealth of info. Have fun in your new studio!
  5. Motor Catches Fire

    OMG!! That wheel brings back memories! It looks just like the wheel I started on at our local art center (close to 40 years ago) . The wheel sits on a table with the rope almost hanging to the floor, and then to engage the motor to turn the wheel, you step on the hanging board at the end of the rope. It makes for a very primitive electric wheel. There were 6 of us in my first class with 2 'wheels' - we took turns (in more ways than 1). We did learn to make pots. Despite the basic primitive wheel, I fell in love with clay and throwing. Several years later I decided to take a 'real wheel class' at Edina Art Center in the Twin Cities, an hour drive each way. When I called to register, I asked the gal who was registering me for class "how many people will I have to share a wheel with?" and after a long pause she replied "each student has their own wheel to use". My response was '"SIGN ME UP" and I made that drive for classes for 10 years - great teachers there! Now i finally have my own wheel and love to share the knowledge that other potters have so generously shared. You do not mention where you are from, but you can replace the motor and belts easily (try a hardware store or farm supply) and do some of those safety measures that Neil measures. Once you begin having fun with it, you don't want to loose any work time because a finger or such got caught in the mechanics of the wheel. The wheel may be bare bones (in more ways than one) but it is a wheel....and a step towards a bigger and better wheel. Good luck and happy potting!!
  6. My test sample turned out as I hoped, a soft semi matt yellow/gold with speckled iron showing thru. The color I was hoping for but my small bowl is ugly so I am t proud to show it here - will also have to figure out how to post pictures. I have a larger batch mixed and hope to glaze and fire on the weekend and then will post a picture. That was my success in the kiln - and luckily partly because I got what I was hoping for. Dumbest thing I've done lately ....6 identical small bowls with new test glazes fired in the kiln. I marked each with a number on the bottom...with wax..then fired...wax burned off ..glazes matured...2 successes..4 failures. Now which of the 5 remaining glaze tests is the other glaze success? So I have 5 more tests to put into my next firing. I love clay!!
  7. I knew I could find help here! Thanks again. And Mark - I'm glad to wait for more info, - never enough in my book.
  8. HI All, Trying to find a couple new glazes and am interested in a turquoise yellow salt glaze that I found in an old clayart topic from 2000 by Dr Tom Roess. I understand all the ingredients but it is the quantities of colorants that do not make sense to me. I know there are participants here that will be able to explain it to me. (Thanks for your help). Here is the recipe: TURQUOISE YELLOW SALT CONE 10 REDUCTION Neph Sy 63.9 Dolomite 21.1 Ultrox 16 (use superpax) OM 4 clay 4.3 Bentonite 4 Also add 1/8 =25 Cobalt Carb 2 =25 Copper Carb To 10,000 grams add 1/2 C. Muriatic Acid My question pertains to the amounts of cobalt carb and also the copper carb. The amounts seem incredibly high -might the base recipe have been written for 105.3 plus 4 bentonite grams, and the colorant additions were listed for a 10,000 gram recipe? Is my guess anywhere close to explaining this. Would appreciate help with the correct colorant amounts - cobalt is too expensive to waste! I will be firing this in a gas kiln fired with LP, to cone 10 R - not a salt kiln Thanks for sharing your knowledge! Diz
  9. I'm Lost

    Patience...once you find a good magazine it is hard to wait for that first issue. Another good one out there is Clay Times - that and PMI are my favorites. Both give me the 'you can do this too' feeling when I read them. A sure way to get your first issue is to go out and buy the current issue - then it will soon arrive in your mailbox. Subscriptions usually seem to take about 6 weeks before you get your first issue - hope yours arrive before then. Enjoy all the info they give.
  10. Ace may not know what 'bat pins' are - but if you ask for 1/4" 'cap screws' they will have a box with many lengths to choose from. I did find the stainless pins at Lowe's. Depending on the store you can buy individual pins or you may have to buy a package containing several. Not expensive and they last forever.
  11. Thanks for the comments - and pretty much what I expected answers to be - it's lousy as one of the gals started in the studio recently and really loves to work in clay. Hopefully her Dr will give his blessing to work in clay at home as she progresses thru her treatment. Otherwise it can be a reward (and celebration) when she finally reaches the end of her chemo.
  12. I have a couple friends who have recently been diagnosed with cancer. Both will be starting the chemo regimen. Neither will work while going thru chemo, and they are focused on keeping positive thoughts and staying as active as their health will allow. Both have a bit of clay experience and have wondered about working in the clay studio at our local art center. I feel that the studio would be a calming and relaxing place for them but whether they work in the studio or at home with clay, I have concerns about possible negative health effects since the chemo will cause changes in their immune system. Because of the dust concerns as well as mold (in clay) etc., should I suggest they perhaps explore a different art medium for now?
  13. This time of year has me studying 'other people's gardens' to see who has the nicest leaves. People look at me as if I am demented when I say I' covet their sunflower leaves and could I please just have several leaves?...I really am not interested in the seed heads'. Today I made a leaf run and now am out to the garage to roll clay and make the impressions. Careful work to see how many slabs I can get before the leaves rip. Leaf bowls add a certain class to a serving table too.
  14. I also used to have terribly cracked fingers. At the greenhouse I worked in they had a lotion for gardeners that I tried and it worked! Like Doc's it goes on oily but in minutes is totally absorbed...and no longer any cracked fingertips or dry hands. The product which I purchase online from www.CamilleBeckman.com is 'Restore' hand therapy and it works so well I have not used anything else. Once a day, a squirt about 1.5" , work it in, and my hands stay nice. There used to have another product called 'Shield' for use before your clay/gardening work but that is discontinued. It is more expensive than Curel but for me it works.
  15. Olympic Torchbearer Gas Kiln

    I have an Olympic 2831 that I fire on LP to cone 10. I have struggled with it for years but am finally getting to where my blood pressure stays even while only the kiln temp rises. This kiln has given me fits for years but within the last year I have finally discovered that my major problem was not giving it enough gas. I could get it to temp but, as stated the temps vary from top to bottom.. Also body reduction is very hard to get throughout the kiln - bottom shelf almost never. Now that I have the temperature rising at a good rate my firings are taking about 6 hours to cone 10, top to bottom cones are within one cone, am getting good glaze melt but I am not getting reduction. So now I will work fine-tuning so I can get my reductions. I really cannot say that I would recommend this kiln to someone looking for a kiln - and sad to say the Olympic kiln company has not offered much help other than " keep trying, you're getting there...". Thank goodness for this forum and Continental Clay. Being mostly a hobby potter I don't see the wisdom in my buying a new kiln.