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Everything posted by neilestrick

  1. I've got a very busy week ahead of me. I currently have 101 pots under plastic that I will have to start trimming and decorating tomorrow, including 2/3 of a dinnerware set, a bunch of mugs, cups, tumblers, oil bottles, and soap pump bottles. I've got a show on Saturday, so my goal is to have it all done by lunchtime Friday so I'm ready to fire for the next show, when I'll need all of this work. Wish me luck!
  2. neilestrick

    Overglazes, lustres and onglazing

    True lustres are applied over the fired glaze, and fired at a very low temp, like cone 021. They are pure metal suspended in a fairly toxic liquid compound, and are quite expensive by volume. When using them, I highly recommend wearing a respirator that will remove fumes, in a well ventilated room. Also wear safety goggles and rubber gloves. As an alternative, like LeeU said, there are low fire and mid-fire glazes that have lustre qualities, but will not be as shiny and metallic as a true overglaze lustre.
  3. neilestrick

    Black and white ink spot/oil spot copycat?

    @potter.y Commercial glazes with the crystals in them are basically just glazes with little pieces of fired glaze in them that melt out a bit. You can brush on the glaze, and then scoop up some of the larger 'crystals' from the jar and place them on the pot where you want them. It would be a difficult thing to make on your own, since it appears the 'crystals' are pre-fired pieces of the same or very similar base glaze, not just glass or colored frit which would run a lot more.
  4. Whether or not you need to dilute the underglaze depends on how strong you want the color. I don't know about the Duncan product you're using, but underglazes are typically matte after firing, and must be covered with a clear glaze to make them food safe. As for the glaze over it, if you like the matte surface you can leave it unglazed as long as it's not meant for food. If you prefer it glossy, or it's meant for use with food, then use a glaze over it. You can use a clear glaze, or any transparent color that will let the underglaze show through. Some satin and matte glazes will even let some underglaze colors bleed through. If you apply glaze first, then underglaze over it, you won't be able to see the glaze. Underglazes are matte and opaque. Underglaze first, then glaze. That's why they call them underglazes.
  5. neilestrick

    What's Your Work Music?

    I listen to a wide variety of music while working at the wheel. Lately it's been a lot of First Aid Kit. But when I just need to crank out a bunch of pots for an hour, nothing beats Paul Simon's Graceland. It's old school, and it's the prefect energy level for throwing.
  6. I've always hated that name 'clotted cream'. I don't want to eat anything that's clotted. Sour cream, however, sounds delicious! Go figure.
  7. neilestrick

    glazes or underglaze ?

    I think it's glaze, probably a chrome-tin pink. All of the pink plates could be the same glaze, applied in different thicknesses.
  8. neilestrick

    Engobe for decorative use on bisque

    This would be a great place to use commercial underglazes. They're cheap, work very well, and are easy to use. Just paint them on and cover with a clear glaze. If you plan to make your own engobes, then I would definitely add some CMC Gum to the mix, to help with brushing and as a hardener that will keep them from smearing when applying the clear glaze over them.
  9. neilestrick

    How much propane will I use

    Where I buy propane it's by the pound. I thought that was how they did it for portable size tanks.
  10. neilestrick

    DIY Refractory on Pyrometer Thermocouple?

    I assume this is the type that has the exposed tip, and the ceramic sleeve pieces that slide over it? If so, the ceramic parts don't really matter much, as long as the two metal parts aren't touching anywhere except the end where they're welded together. That said, if there's any question about the condition and accuracy of the thermocouple, replace it. They're pretty cheap in the big picture. If you want to extend its life, put it in a ceramic protection tube.
  11. What exactly are we looking at here? Are those fired samples of pure titanium, raw, in glazes, etc?
  12. neilestrick

    Humidity and Raku Results?

    I don't see how humidity would have any effect on raku results. I think that's just a convenient place to put the blame for variations in the results.
  13. neilestrick

    Cone 6 Porcelain Elaine's crystal

    When it comes to porcelain, it doesn't really matter how slowly you dry them. If it's going to pop, it's going to pop. The issue is that porcelain shrinks a lot and has very poor plasticity and dry strength. So if the pot is leather hard and you're attaching a wet handle, then you're going to have issues regardless of how you're attaching them, because the handle has a lot of shrinking to do in comparison to the pot, and the attachment will be weak and pull apart because of the poor plasticity and dry strength. The best thing you can do is get the handle as close to the dryness of the pot as possible before attaching it. I prefer the look of a handle pulled directly on the mug, but with porcelain that's often not possible. So what I do is pull my handles on a bisqued mug, let it dry until it pops off easily, then let it dry on a bat until it's firm enough to handle without messing it up- still a little bit flexible. Then I attach the top to the mug, get the shape just right, and wait until it's almost firm before attaching the bottom. At that point I can put them in the kiln and speed dry them if necessary, because the pot and handle are already equalized. You don't necessarily have to go to this much trouble- it all depends on what type of handle you make. But you do need to let it dry a bunch before attaching it.
  14. neilestrick

    Most used sieve size?

    80 is all I ever use. I keep a 150 mesh also, but it's only needed with a rare handful of materials, like if you have a stain that tends to speckle rather than evenly disperse. When I worked for A.R.T. Clay, out of the 50 or more color stains that we used in our glaze lines, there was only one that required the 150 mesh.
  15. I've got a 3 inch slab that has lasted for years in a studio that's used by many people.
  16. neilestrick

    How much propane will I use

    I think she meant 100 pound. That's a tank size that's about 5 feet tall. Grill tanks are 20 pound.
  17. neilestrick

    Amaco treadle wheel

    I'd call Amaco on Monday, and check their web site for a parts diagram.
  18. Glazes are cheap when you break it down to the cost per pot. Take a look at the actual cost of glazing each of your pieces and see if it's really worth altering the recipe.
  19. neilestrick

    How much propane will I use

    Depends on the BTU's of the burners, and how you handle them. Hopefully someone here with a similar setup can chime in on their propane usage. Keep the tank as far from the kiln as possible. I would shoot for at least 6 feet. Check it as the firing progresses to make sure the tank isn't warming up from the radiant heat from the kiln. You could always put a piece of plywood or something in front of it to shield it.
  20. neilestrick

    Glaze Defect

    I'm thinking this is related to the application to raw clay, like there's something going on with the clay being wetted during the glazing process. Have you tested the glaze on bisque? Commercial glaze, or did you mix it? Post the recipe if you mixed it.
  21. neilestrick

    Beach sand instead of grog?

    I should clarify that when I say sand, I mean silica sand, typically purchased from my clay/glaze material supplier. It's super cheap, and already proven to work. For me personally, the time spent collecting, cleaning, and testing a local sand is not worth the time. From an educational perspective, I think it's a great thing to explore. If you're trying to save money, then not so much.
  22. neilestrick

    1 ramp vs. 2 ramps in a segment

    I can't see the value of having 2 ramps per segment. 9 segments is usually more than enough for most situations.
  23. neilestrick

    Canopy for art shows

    I was at a chow two summers ago where someone had large rocks, like maybe softball size, sitting on their booth feet to hold it down. A storm came through during Friday setup, flipped her tent and sent a rock flying. It hit the woman setting up behind her in the head. She wasn't hurt badly, but head wounds bleed a lot and there was blood on her tent, on the pavement, etc. People were freaking out. An ambulance came and took her away. She came back later and had a good show. I have many horror stories about tents, and this was the only one where there was injury to a person, not just property, but it reinforces the need for a good setup. So many people aren't willing to invest in a a truly safe setup because they 'only do a couple of shows a year' and it's not worth the money. But even if you only do one show, you have to do it right. Before I started using stabilizer bars on my old lightweight popup, I once had a gust hit hard enough that it flexed the top of my tent about a foot, and it hit the pots on my top shelf. that was crazy. With the stabilizer bars that can't happen. I've seen heavy duty tents- Trimline and Light Dome- get destroyed by wind because they weren't using the lower stabilizer bars. I used to use tube weights- PVC pipe filled with concrete, but they took up a huge amount of space in the truck. And 3"x30" pipe filled with concrete only weigh about 24 pounds. I found that that was not enough weight to keep my tent solid. I think 35 pounds is the minimum, especially for a lightweight popup. My current popup weighs double what a typical popup does, and my walls are very heavy 600D coated canvas just like the top- they weigh 6 pounds each. So I feel pretty good with 35 pounds on each corner. I do find, though, that the feet will slide if the pavement is smooth, so I have to watch that. I'm considering trying to put a mat of some sort under the feet to keep them from sliding. Pieces of yoga mat, maybe? Any ideas?
  24. neilestrick

    Pricing for An Old Bailey Wheel

    I'd never pay $800 for a 20 year old wheel. Offer $400 and go from there.
  25. neilestrick

    New Skutt wheel issues

    These are different motors than Brent uses. The TS motors are much larger, continuous duty rated motors. The 1/3 hp is as big as a 1hp Brent. They take longer for everything in the motor to get settled in. The stone makes quick work of it.

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