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About Chilly

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    those who know, teach
  • Birthday March 24

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  • Gender
  • Location
    Langdon Hills, Essex, UK
  • Interests
    Pottery, gardening, cycling, Scouting, outdoors.

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  1. Home-made slab roller. Saves so much physical effort rolling slabs. Mitre cutter Stamp - made from an off-cut of a wooden curtain pole, and thick copper wire bent into my initial, hot-melt glued together. Dipped in WD40 works perfectly.
  2. I started to say two things are in daily use, then I worked my way round the house, and the number has gone up in each room. In the kitchen we use spoon rests, butter dishes, a tea-bag bowl and fish-pie dishes, the lounge has a kindling-holder pot and ornaments, the en-suite bathroom has a pot that holds combs, the bathroom has plant pots and decorative trays to hold them. I also have coasters in most rooms and the greenhouses, plus plant saucers everywhere. At the scout campsite, all the crew have a mug with their name on it. I have a pair of two-handle cups (one to use and one to ..........) to be wood-fired tomorrow for my mum who is struggling with holding a cup with one hand. And as she drinks her tea while it is still scalding she can't hold normal cups with both hands. So, a veritable haul of me-made pottery in-use, quite impressed.
  3. https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCjqCOLOIp8HKkBxBuiQFTdw
  4. Chilly


    Hi @Hester Can you post some pictures of the mould, showing the whole thing, and just one half?
  5. Hi @JeanWW I'm also in the UK. Every kiln is different, even those made on the same day will vary. You will only get to know your kiln by firing it, keeping a log and by using cones. The digital programmer will attempt to do what you ask, but the kiln itself may not be capable of achieving a particular heat rate, or it may lose heat too quickly, or you might have more ware in this week than you did last week. It's a bit like learning to drive a car, many lessons, but no real destination. I will say it again, use cones. They are the only way you will know what your kiln is up to, they tell you the amount of heat/work done. It's a bit like you can't put a fruit cake into a cold oven and expect it to be cooked by the time the oven reaches the required temperature. Your cake needs time and heat. Your pots are the same. Some people use cones every single firing, week in, week out, others only use them as a learning tool, others never do, but without experience it is like driving a car without a speedometer and hoping not to break the speed limit. There are potters on this forum in all the above camps, but most have many years experience. I'm waiting for my kiln to cool at this very moment, having fired it overnight. I did not use cones, as I was firing a small amount of porcelain that will be wood-kiln fired this weekend, so I'm not too fussed about actual final temperature, and I know my kiln. The programme that I used is: 20C per hour to 100C, hold 30 minutes. 150C per hour to 1,000C, hold 30 minutes. The reason for the very low. slow start is that the pots were not fully dry, but were quite thin. The first hold gives time for the temperature to stabilise in all parts of the kiln and for water to boil off. The same, but to a lesser degree with the second hold. I could probably have not bothered with the second hold, but it was there from a previous firing, so I thought "why not". Sounds like you are not attending classes now, or I'd advise you to talk to the techs who fired there. In the long term clay and firing costs are low compared to your time, so load up your kiln, set it going and see what happens. Good Luck
  6. What's on my workbench? Another trip down the rabbit hole. First tested these glazes in 2014 in an electric kiln. Gave up as they didn't mature at ^6, and no-one else fires that high and I can't produce enough "test tiles" to fill the kiln. Off to a wood-firing next weekend, so decided to make some more tests and re-hydrate those glazes. I'll say hello to the mad-hatter and the rabbit from you all while I'm down there. Middle photo are some tubes for testing, bottom is "posh" catcher trays to stand the tubes in. Then we'll only have to wad the bottom of the trays, not all the tubes.
  7. Chilly


    No release agent for plaster moulds, that I know of. Have you checked that the mould is clean? Try vinegar and a sponge to clean it up. Does your slip release easily from other moulds? Are you leaving it too long before un-moulding? Too little time? Casting too thick, too thin? Small curved moulds are the devil to deal with. I have had to enlarge the "funnel" on handle moulds as they never held enough "top-up" slip.
  8. Chilly

    Glaze on bonsai pot foot

    To get a fully glazed foot, (going back to the original question), you can stand the body of the pot on "things" that raise it above the shelf. Shelf posts, small pieces of broken kiln shelf. So long as the pot is well supported, not just in the middle, it might not slump, and then you can have fully glazed feet. I've done this several times, but beware that the pot can slump if not properly supported, and if the glaze runs it will drip straight onto the shelf, so catchers under the foot are useful. This is not one of my pots, but something I'd love to create some time.
  9. Chilly

    Kiln not reaching temperature

    Mine slows down after it gets to about 1100c. So probably yes. I have a smaller kiln than yours, also a Potterycrafts, with the same max temp. Even with brand new elements it struggles to reach 1260, but will put ^6 down with enough heat work. Have you opened the kiln yet? Was the firing OK? If it fired for 18 hours, your pots are probably overfired. Did you use cones?
  10. Chilly

    Kiln not reaching temperature

    That kiln's max temp is 1300c, so it should get there. However, unless the elements are in excellent (think new) condition, and you have a very short cable and are plugged into a socket that goes direct to the fuse board it is highly unlikely to reach that. Are you using cones to judge the firing? If it has been firing for longer than you expected, it could have fired "enough" to mature your glazes, but you will only know that from the end result or from cones..
  11. Chilly

    Sculpture stuck to base

    Goggles are great if you can wear them, I struggle with the fit, so I wear safety glasses over my seeing glasses and have a face shield as well. Feel like a space man when I'm dremelling.
  12. Chilly

    Will it break/crack when firing ?

    There are two problems: Uneven thickness can cause cracking while drying. Keep it covered with plastic so it can dry very (very) slowly. If it survives, the next problem is the firing. The solid parts will likely still be damp, even if the surface is dry. As moisture evaporates from the surface, the moisture left in the thick parts has further and further to travel to escape, and the outer surface is shrinking, making it harder and harder for the moisture to escape. It is moisture left inside the thick parts of the clay that causes explosions. When you fire it, take it very slow to 100C, hold it there for some time for the moisture to warm up and evporate, then take the temperature up slowly for another 100C, then fire as normal. Be warned that if it does explode it could destroy everything on the same shelf, and may even damage pots on other shelves. Good Luck
  13. Chilly

    Sculpture stuck to base

    Diamond disc, as @Mark C. says. I also have a diamond blade for my dremel for small jobs. Plus dust mask
  14. Chilly

    Help needed to identify a mark

    Therefore, it is highly likely it was slipcast, so could be the mark of the original designer or the factory or ...................

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