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Everything posted by JohnnyK

  1. What brand of controller did you buy, Dom? I've got an Orton unit that I've found very easy to program and use, with the capability to write and save a number of "User-defined" programs that have been very successful in my firings. JohnnyK
  2. JohnnyK

    new saggar and obvara pieces

    Beautiful work, as usual, Marcia...you are an inspiration! JohnnyK
  3. JohnnyK

    Glaze test question

    I agree with Mark with regard to the testing. Do you have an extruder that you can use to squirt out the form for the test tiles? If so, make the slightly angled form as tall as you can with some ridges for other impressions so you can see how the glazes break and pool. If no extruder, can you throw a circular form with an outward shape and an outward extended foot or an inward shape that you can ultimately slice into pieces for your tests? Third option would be to roll a slab, slice it into strips and bend them into an angled L shape. I've seen and used all three methods. JohnnyK
  4. JohnnyK

    Choosing clay types

    Your supplier should have some test pieces for you to look at before you make your choices. If not, maybe you can ask them to fire some pieces for you or get them from the manufacturer. My local suppliers have test samples displayed for all the clay bodies they sell... JohnnyK
  5. JohnnyK

    Re-firing low fire glaze

    I've used the hairspray trick for a couple of ^6 reglazes and found it to be helpful when brushing the Amaco Potters Choice glazes without additional CMC. As with everything glazes, run some tests, even if it means using scrap pieces rather than your good sculptures to see if you can duplicate results. I have a very small collection of bisque "failures" that I keep around for just this purpose. Give it a shot, Gregory...the only thing you have to lose is time. JohnnyK
  6. In the process of designing and building a portable Raku kiln. Will be doing a bisque firing of the blanket buttons as well as some pots to fire when the kiln is done...

    1. Denice


      Sounds like fun I have often thought about turning a small old electric kiln into a raku kiln on wheels.  I have another old electric kiln bite the dust.  I will hang on to it for awhile in case I get ambitious.   Denice

  7. Hi ISY, I've been where you are now with the firing "inconsistencies" on an old kiln. The witness cones are a big help in getting things straight. What you'll have to do is compensate in the case of the bisque firing by either setting a higher finish temp on the controller or setting a longer soak time at the end of your current program. As for the ^8 firing, a lower finish temp and/or a shorter soak time at the end, will be the order of the day. Neil just beat me to what I just said. :-) JohnnyK
  8. JohnnyK

    Underglaze cell separation

    Welcome to the Forum, James! The best way to find out if the silicone will work is to try the technique on a test piece. JohnnyK
  9. Hi Evagellos and welcome to the Forum! You might check out Sumi von Dassow's book "In the Potter's Kitchen" where you can find pretty much anything you need to know about what you want to do. Welcome to the fascinating world of clay and GOOD LUCK! JohnnyK
  10. JohnnyK

    Kiln fired too hot

    You may have inadvertently used a^6 bar in the kiln sitter. The cups were probably a low-fire clay, hence the melted mess. It doesn't look like you used witness cones which would have given an indication of what had happened. The shelves are probably a total loss. You can try to chisel the melts off and if successful, grind the remaining debris off the shelves. You can probably CAREFULLY grind the melts off the kiln wall, but if that doesn't work, rebuilding the kiln might be necessary. JohnnyK
  11. JohnnyK

    Help with drying

    Does the studio have a drying cabinet? If so, You can use Mea's suggestion with the fabric and if the piece is not dry enough, pop it into the drying cabinet until it is dry enough to trim. JohnnyK
  12. JohnnyK

    Grinding tool

    You might take a look at these tools from Harbor Freight. I've used something similar for grinding glaze off shelves, but it has to be done with a light touch or you'll wind up grinding grooves into the shelves. The price is right for what you want to do. My grinder is a Makita that I used to use in my remodeling business. Good luck... JohnnyK https://www.harborfreight.com/4-12-in-43-amp-angle-grinder-69645.html https://www.harborfreight.com/4-inch-grinding-wheel-for-masonry-39676.html
  13. JohnnyK

    Crazy requests

    Bondo might have worked...
  14. Probably not because the fresh clay, as it dries prior to firing, will shrink, while the fired clay will not shrink during the drying process. Then when you fire it, the fresh clay will shrink even faster and if it did not pull away from the fired clay while drying, it will surely do so in the kiln. JohnnyK
  15. JohnnyK

    Question on mixing colorant batches

    I am guessing that you are mixing the first batch dry, adding water to bring the SG to dipping level, dipping the tile and then adding another 5% cobalt to the wet mix to bring it up to 10%. If so, I think that dipping the tile will reduce the original volume and adding the additional 5% would bring the concentration to slightly more than 10%. Not so much a problem with cobalt, but when you get into adding fractions of a %, it could be detrimental to the outcome ... I think that using the wet method, but making a smaller volume, like maybe a gallon instead of 5 gallons would make it easier to mix and keep the glaze components in suspension for mixing the smaller batches of colored glaze...
  16. What cone are you firing to? if I'm doing low fire glazing, many times I will glaze the entire piece and set it in the kiln on a small 3 pin stand which you can get at any ceramic supplier. (I've even got to making my own...) The pins leave tiny marks on the bottom of the piece which are pretty insignificant. With High-fire, the plinths work well, but I think the undercut would be better. Here's an example of a ^6 firing where Amaco's "Paladium" was used under Amaco's Blue Rutile. The drips are the palladium which ran like a track star. At first I was going to try to grind them off, but then I thought they actually looked pretty cool and would also act as a reminder of what NOT to do. Good luck with your future pieces! JohnnyK
  17. just opened the glaze firing and am blown away by the pieces. Some will be refired to enhance the look!

    1. Joseph Fireborn

      Joseph Fireborn

      gotta post some gallery images when you say things like this!...

    2. LeeU


      yep-what he said


    3. glazenerd
  18. Waiting for my bisque firing of 30+ bowls, jars, cups, sponge holders and jewelry to cool so I can start the glazing processes. Biggest run since Christmas!

  19. JohnnyK

    Oxide Pastels - Safety Issues

    Hi Preeta, I just finished a Raku class at Sierra College last semester and, as you know, safety is paramount when mixing glazes. Copper and cobalt are both toxic and you should continue with your precautions. If you can't mix your compounds off-site and have to do it in the classroom, I would try to isolate yourself and go work in a corner away from the other students. I'm guessing that you're working with small quantities and the process is not that critical but it's better to err on the side of safety... JohnnyK
  20. JohnnyK

    "art" of making mud balls

    And it goes on and on and on and on...No translation necessary!
  21. Crystals... A potter friend of mine had thrown away a vase with a beautiful crystalline glaze...I was fortunately able to salvage all the pieces (it was just one side of the neck that was broken). I glued that puppy together and it now sits on a shelf with the cracks in the back toward the wall and is a constant inspiration for a journey down a side road of that highway of life. That trip is going to be in the not too distant future... Thanks, Glazenerd, for all your inspiration over the past six years! JohnnyK
  22. Kraythe, Here's a youtube link that shows a bunch of videos on throwing off the hump. You might find something here that could help you...just copy and paste it into your search engine. https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=throwing+saki+cups+off+the+hump JohnnyK
  23. Hi Kraythe, Have you, by any chance, tried throwing your little cups off the hump? You might find it a little easier to work the clay to the shape you want, trim the top straight; measure the depth of the cup on the inside and cut the piece off about 1/2" below the measurement; then trim the foot later... JohnnyK
  24. My ceramic roots grew from the movie "Ghost" where, in a very short segment, Demi Moore was throwing a vase. I thought to myself and said to my wife, "Someday I'm going to do that...". As time went on, each time I saw film clips or photos of potters plying their art or trade, I'd say to myself, "Someday I'm going to do that...". That someday came around 12 years ago when I was remodeling a bathroom for an 87 year old working ceramist. She was teaching classes to 4H groups in slip-casting. In conversations with her, she would suggest that I take a Learning Exchange class at Alpha Fired Arts a local ceramic supplier and teaching facility. She also gave me an old spare kiln that she was replacing with something newer. I took the LE class and the instructor said that he only expected us to produce 4 functional pieces during the 6 week class. I made 22 cups, mugs, and bowls! Since then, I've taken Ceramics I, II, and Raku at Sierra College; set up my own studio; and have been happily making functional ware for gifts and sale; and am currently expanding my knowledge of glazes with a future goal of producing a book on Glaze Effects. While just about all the books that are out on glazes now give recipes and show usually unrelated photos, I have yet to find a book that says "If you do this with this glaze, this is what you will probably get." My roots are growing into a flourishing tree! JohnnyK
  25. JohnnyK

    Kiln Over firing

    Thanks for your input, Neil. I was hoping you would jump in on this... JohnnyK

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