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About neilestrick

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    Neil Estrick

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    Grayslake, IL

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  1. I'd also be using that clay at cone 6. An absorption rate of 3.4 is too high.
  2. Yes, there is a bubbly stage. Here's my concern- if it's still bubbly at cone 4, fine but overfired at cone 6, you've got a very narrow firing range, which is bound to be a problem in the future.
  3. neilestrick

    Local clay scumming

    Add 0.5% barium carb to your clay to eliminate scumming. Disperse the barium well in water first or you'll get white specks.
  4. Two things: 1. Refiring won't necessarily fix the glaze problem. Sometimes it gets worse, sometimes it gets better, sometimes it's the same. Don't use refires as an indicator of whether or not the changes to the firing schedule are helping. Only fresh glaze will tell you that. 2. All the firing changes haven't fixed the problem, so maybe it's time to try the glaze formula. Try adding 2% each of silica and EPK, in increments up to 10% and see what happens. Wait until you get a solid cone 5 schedule worked out, though.
  5. neilestrick

    Kiln didn’t reach temperature

    Any company that makes coils should be able to get you a coil that works properly based on the size of the kiln. Assuming all the elements are getting power to them (no problems with the switches or wiring) I would make sure that you wired it correctly- parallel vs series- and if that's correct I would talk to the folks who made the elements.
  6. It's a Skutt 818 right? The Skutt web site show it at 26.7 amps. I'm not seeing the image you're showing on the Skutt site. At 21.7 amps you need a 30 amp breaker, at 26.7 amps you need a 40 amp breaker.
  7. Are you sure that's the right info for the kiln? The amperage seems low. Wait until you get the kiln and see what the actual serial plate says.
  8. Chances are, the recommend amount of water is a general guideline for all of their glazes, not that specific glaze. Every glaze needs a different amount of water depending on what's in the glaze. The thickening could also be due to some suspender or binder that they put in the glaze. Sometimes those can take longer to wet than the rest of the materials, hence the thickening even after a couple of days. Stir the glaze well, and if it's still too thick, add water.
  9. neilestrick

    Glaze Cracking around Handles when Drying

    I would thin out the glaze a bit. It will give you more leeway in the application, and prevent it from puddling too thick at the handle joint. If you want it really thick, then dip it twice, letting it dry some between dips. Don't let it dry completely between dips or that will cause other problems. I need a thick application on my pots, too, and this is how I do it. A thinner application will never cover well, no matter how well it melts. You'e gotta have enough glaze on there to do the job.
  10. neilestrick

    Glaze Cracking around Handles when Drying

    It it's cracking when drying on the pot, that's usually a case of applying it too thick. If a 3 count is too thick, add more water to thin it out. In my studio we apply at a 6 count. I don't see anything in the formula that worries me- I've got several glazes that have 20% clay in them. What is in the clear glaze that you're adding to it? That could be contributing to the problem.
  11. It's more likely to happen if you're using a very thin wire. We have problems in my studio with some of the Dirty Girl wires doing things like that. An easy fix is to simply recut it after it has set for a few hours.
  12. neilestrick

    glass-effect glaze?

    I would think that any glossy glaze would give the effect. Maybe a very light blue or gray?
  13. @SunsetBay First make sure your thermocouples are touching the ends of the protection tubes. Just loosen the screws that hold the TC in the porcelain block, push the TC in until it touches the end of the tube, and retighten the screws. If all seems well there, go ahead and adjust the TC offset. Instructions here: http://hotkilns.com/thermocouple-cone-offset
  14. neilestrick

    Advice on Kiln I Found

    The blank ring just lifts off.
  15. neilestrick

    Test firing electric kiln

    Just one peep open, the upper peep in the wall.

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