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Stephen

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Everything posted by Stephen

  1. ya know I read this post and I am surprised any glue would withstand 2000 degrees. I obviously could be wrong but I bet it didn't and the break was just sealed by glaze. If that's the case then all it did was hold it in place and its a weak flaw in pot. I would go with paper clay or AMACO product if I were you.
  2. Stephen

    Closing studio

    what part of Texas
  3. Stephen

    Power Slab Roller

    I have been able to find only one electric slab roller, the Bailey DB40 at $2700. Does anyone know of any others or have feed back on this one?
  4. Stephen

    Power Slab Roller

    Not particularly hung up on the 40, 30 would probably be fine. I could only find this brand of power slab roller. We have a regular shimpo slap roller now which is a 30". Focus for use is slabs for 2", 4" and 6" tiles @ 1/2 thick. The manual one we have has a dial and its really hard to nail the thickness precisely every time since what we want seldom falls easily on a marked notch, so we tend to keeps notes by the roller for different forms. It also takes forever and small art tile installations with these size tiles take a lot of field tiles. I will go find Marks write up on his. There are other methods and this might not be the best. Watching the video it seemed like a lot of effort to end up with a slab. I have an air release mold system that does crank them out. My biggest issue with that system is warpage. The mold is flipped over and air applied and the tile drops out but the tile does not drop out evenly every time but one or two corners drop then the rest. I think this is causing higher than normal warpage. The slab is showing less warpage but the process is much slower. It is kind of a wash but the mold causes a lot of clay to reclaim and if the warpage happens in glaze fire (often does) then its a loss. I have also looked at pug mills with barrel chutes that can be used to slice a square section into tiles.
  5. ya know I might be misunderstanding you but you would not put in cones like that. The 0 anything would just melt and have to be scraped off your shelf. Don't get the cone 10 melt though as 1300c is cone 10 if you have one speed that runs in the 270 per hour ramp range. The whole point though of the cones is to visually nail where the kiln fired to. We use a 3-cone pack (often on several shelves. We fire mid so for bisque the pack has an 05 04 03 and we are looking for a full bend on 05 and a half bend on 04, 03 unaffected. For glaze we have a 5, 6 and 7. We fire to cone 5 with another cone of heat work for 20 minute soak so we are looking for a full bend of 5, half bend of 6 and no effect on 7. Print out a cone chart to get a feel. If you are low firing (most bisque 04 and glaze 06- bisque is usually hotter on low fire) and mid fire is 5-7 with an 06-04 bisque. Most people seem to recommend firing your electric kiln 2 cones below its max rating. Firing at max will wear out the bricks and elements much faster. If you only have the cones and an one switch to hit temp then I would use a log and find that spot for each cone you want and record the time (hours to reach) then fashion a pack with one cone below, one cone exact and one cone above and put these packs on a top shelf, middle shelf and bottom shelf. Start a log and check your cones religiously after each firing and note the element wear and time adjustment needed for the next firing. At some point (with an old kiln that might be sooner than later) you will need a set of elements because the kiln will not hit temp no matter how long you run it. If you don't keep track of this stuff then you will start having bad glaze loads when the elements wear out. I see a 'full' on the knob so I think you have more control than you think by working through those clicks at different times in your firing to affect the ramp speed.
  6. Stephen

    Studio Design

    Maybe using a quick squeegee to drain afterward to minimize what the concrete is soaking up every night. if it seems to be building up dampness maybe wait a day or even two to allow it to dry completely between hosing. I guess I think trying to hose down nightly is going to do what you think and make it to moist and I would wonder if mold might even be an issue over time. I would consider still doing a light wet mop every day and do the hose routine once a week. Great studio plan!
  7. Yep $50 worth of cheap parts, if that. The problem with this stuff is that people don't know any better and buy one for a spouse or parent and just waste their money and the person gets a piece of crap wheel for a present and they are in an awkward situation or worst yet tries to learn to throw on this piece of crap. One of the reasons I am always recommending the Clay Boss to beginners is that at $600 its a real potters wheel that really will last a lifetime of hobby use.
  8. just checked the one model ($230) that had 10 reviews. Made me feel bad as I think most of them were gifts. At $230 retail that means this wheel had to leave the factory boxed and ready for shipping for about $50-$60 in cost so it defies logic that is is anything of value.
  9. sounds like your next business venture is taking shape.
  10. Just checked them out. Wonder if they work?
  11. Stephen

    Are these kilns worth repairing?

    Maybe sell one to offset the cost of setting up the other one.
  12. Stephen

    Are these kilns worth repairing?

    Why not install both of them? Great find, that is 6-7 thousand bucks worth of kilns new and still worth half that. Maybe they didn't replace the thermocouple at the same time. Skutt is a great company and 15 years is really just not that old in kiln years unless they really used it heavily. I think the controller may tell you how many firings.
  13. Stephen

    Electric quote seem fair?

    Hope you find someone reasonable and ya know if at the end of the day you can't then you just pay the extra dough and move on, right? I think it comes down to matching the right person to the job. In my opinion electricians or electrical companies that view small residential or commercial work not worth the time should not do those types of jobs, period. I just take it badly to be told my job doesn't matter so its a crappy bid and take it or leave it situation with most companies I called. Both guys that do work by the hour came out just did the work and they had the basic parts they needed on the truck (this is real basic stuff for an electric truck). They were both also knocking down some other hourly jobs that same day. I got the impression that this was bread and butter work for them. It wan't inexperience that caused them to take small hourly repairs and mods but just part of there routine. Both also do large jobs but I guess this filled the downtime. The hourly rate should be derived from ALL the cost that goes into doing a job and the point of the first hour usually being $50-$100 higher is supposed to cover travel and down time specific to that job. The half angry, double bid response to small jobs they don't want to do seems unneeded and kind of crappy to me anyway. If it's not a job you do please just tell me you don't want the job so I can move on. As a customer deserve both a fair price and professional approach to the work that I am hiring out and that includes mundane work like adding a plug..
  14. you find something like this a little better and is pretty cheap: https://ceramic.school/diy-raku-kiln/
  15. Stephen

    Electric quote seem fair?

    Both times, I just contacted every electric company stating plainly that I was trying to find a company that would work by the hour. I jumped the gun and hired the $1200 company and the next day after I signed off on the bid and scheduled a local company emailed and said they would do work by the hour. Hired them for split AC and they were great. $90 and hour. Thing is by the hour is bid by the actual labor expended, They prefer bids because they can just charge what the market will bear. No way the guy coming out realistically thought he would spend 6 hours doing my job and he didn't. He spent 3. Good luck!
  16. Stephen

    Electric quote seem fair?

    I have gone out for bid twice for kiln plugs and have come to the conclusion that bids by most electricians just get absurd. I hired it out twice and ran my own once when I built a studio. First kiln was an oval and was sitting right in front of box. Just literally needed to have a breaker added and dedicated installed inches from box. Had bids ranging from $500 to $3500. Finally found an electrician that would do it by the hour. $120 first hour and $80 after. He spent about an hour and a half and charged me $200. When I moved into my house last year needed my two kilns hooked up and got in a hurry and went with a bid of $1200 which later the tech admitted he bid at 6 hours. I knew it would take 2 and a half three hours tops because he had to add a box and two plugs fished in wall but everything was on the wall right behind kiln. And it took the electrician they sent exactly 3 hours start to finish. Same company bid $1500 last summer to install power for a split AC 30 feet from the box. Found a local electrical outfit that would do electric by the hour at flat $90 an hour, it took 3 hours and cost me $270 for the work that the other company 'bid' at $1500. I will never, ever pay anyone by the bid to work on my house ever again. Did I say never.
  17. ya know it is a shame. I used to order from them all the time before they were bought out and they were just like everyone else and just fine. Pottery outfits tend to be on the very small business scale and I have had to pause and smile sometimes while dealing with them. Most I think are staffed by a bunch of potters that would rather be throwing pots but they do seem to more often than not give a crap and usually come through OK. I would guess that after it was sold, the shell is being bounced around now to just plain ecomm companies and they are trying to do everything mostly drop ship with little or no inventory beyond the basics. Too bad.
  18. are you going this route because you can't afford a kiln or because that's where your interest lies?
  19. Stephen

    Can I make a kiln out of this?

    whoops didn't mean to put down anybodies kiln :-) ... but if I understand him correctly he has 4 2x2 fiber boards. That's a long way from having a cone 6 kiln isn't it?
  20. Stephen

    Can I make a kiln out of this?

    Ya know I read a few books on the subject that were great. 'The Kiln Book' by Frederick Olsen was full of info. No I don't think you can easily build a cone 6 kiln with 4 fiber board sheets but you can probably make use of them. There is also a book I bought on amazon on alternative kilns and firing. I would do some research. I mean you can dig a hole in the ground and fire decorative pots but when you say cone six then you mean something beyond pit and trash can/fiber blanket kilns. I blew it off because I decided I wanted to spend my time making pots not building kilns.
  21. she has a website with a few pictures http://www.unisonpottery.com/gallery-pottery-art-gardiner/
  22. Not sure where to post but thought some here might be interested. Did not know him personally but have watched some of his videos. Seems to have made a serious impact in pottery and that is an accomplishment that few of us will achieve. https://www.minnpost.com/artscape/2019/01/warren-mackenzie-a-profoundly-influential-minnesota-potter/
  23. I think I might be confused and of course both ceramical and cottle boards would not be of any value for a slip casting mold.
  24. Stephen

    Waterslide decal paper

    Ya know I do get the outrage here if this lady really did just cop a widely used process for personal gain with no justification. I have to wonder though if she has a side to this story as well. I get that there are references to the process that pre-dates her filing but that does not mean that she didn't come up with the process and paper and then decided to protect her investment later when it was being used by others and eroding her sales. Again not trying to say what she is doing is right just that there may be more to the story. Sometimes business really is just business and she is not going after individual users so there is that. As an aside, my partner uses this process and it did annoy her that I offered some defense and also agreed with Chris that a $2 per sheet increase was not that big of a deal and could easily be absorbed with most pots. Pottery is a small world so its probably not brilliant to piss off a lot of potters if you want to sell them other stuff. Hell will likely be a little frosty before my partner buys some of those $3 sheets.
  25. I made a couple of sets of adjustable cottle boards and it was not a big deal and might be easier to work with than the bucket. Youtube prob has a few videos. You can also use ceramical which is strong and about $15 for 50lbs.
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