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Everything posted by plumcreative

  1. Hi all I fire an electric kiln at cone 6 for glaze and have a few questions. We are trying Standard 266 dark brown clay and are experiencing bloating in about half the work. Standard says to fire at cone 5 for the 266 but, in order to not fire almost empty kiln, I would need to combine with projects made with other clays. Also, we use a lot of different glazes and have tasted them at cone 6. So my questions are: 1- Would changing to cone 5 or 5.5 change the results of my glazes? 2- How different is the strength of pottery fired at cone 6 vs. cone 5 ? ( Is there a chart somewhere that shows the difference in strengths for different cones?). I also read somewhere that the bloating can be fixed with change to the bisque firing schedule-- ie: staying longer at highest temp to give the clay time to release the gasses that cause the bloating. Has anyone had experience with this? And, if we decide to try firing to cone 5 or 5.5 can you recommend some firing schedules that would work best for our cone 6 glazes? Cheers, Amy
  2. Thanks Babs. I found it. Super helpful. For anyone else interested you can read some really detailed info here:
  3. plumcreative

    Will Re-Bisqueing Stop Bloating?

    Hi Curt, I've only been running my own kiln for about 2 years so I have not experimented much with varying kiln schedules. We use a cone 6 schedule for glaze based on schedule I found in Mastering Cone 6 Glazes. I don't know much about changing the schedule to be 5.5. I asked Julie Hregdovic, technical director at Standard about changes to schedule in reference to the 266 and she said "The only thing I do differently with my glaze firing is I slow down the kiln at 1900 degrees to 175 degrees an hour to 2198 and hold for 5 min then shut off." Do you think that would be sufficient? I use an L&L kiln with a Genesis Kiln Controller so it is programmed with cool down stages. I also have a downdraft vent which runs through entire process. Can you recommend changes to our glaze schedule to bring it down to 5.5 cone that I can test with the 266? My goal is to try to make as minimal change as possible so glazes will hopefully not change a lot. Thanks for any additional advice you can give. Cheers, Amy Our cone 6 Rate °F/hr To °F Hold 1 99 230 60min 2 360 1976 0 3 153 2192 15min 4 495 1832 0 5 126 1400 0 6 9999 86 0
  4. plumcreative

    Will Re-Bisqueing Stop Bloating?

    Wow! Thanks all for the awesome details everyone. I really like to learn this stuff. Everything to do with ceramic making is overwhelming sometimes but little by little I think I may know about 5% of it all by the time I leave this earth ;>)
  5. PotterPutter, we normally fire bisque to 05. If we go to 04 will we see much change in glaze absorption? And do you think we would see much difference in glaze going from cone 6 to cone 5.5? Timbo Heff (in another thread) seems to have similar thinking as Min— he said it helps to hold bisque at 1525 (below point of sintering) for a couple hours to give gas more time to escape. (He indicated that this can be done at any bisque firing from 08 to 02.) I really appreciate everyone’s great input. I am starting to formulate a test plan. Cheers, Amy
  6. Thanks for the input everyone. Oregon Brown sounds like something we would like to try but we're all the way on the other side of the country in DC area.
  7. plumcreative

    Will Re-Bisqueing Stop Bloating?

    Question for Timbo regarding his info on getting rid of bloat. My studio mate is trying Standard 266 and it bloats about half the time at cone 6 schedule we use (based on Mastering Cone 6 Glazes book). She wants me to change to a cone 5 firing schedule (which is what Standard says will eliminate the acknowledged bloating problem with this clay). Since we use a lot of different cone 6 clays and many different glazes (which I have extensively tested at cone 6), I am reluctant to change everything over because it may change the glaze results and I would prefer to not do all of the testing over again. (I could fire the 266 stuff on its own but that would mean firing almost empty kiln and more kiln sitting for me.) So, question is: If we do the extended bisque you indicated will the bloat-causing gases be gone so we can stay with cone 6 firing for glazes? (Note: I am going to test but wanted to get clarification on the bisque fix since you also said "This will not prevent bloats from overfiring : only not overfiring prevents those".)
  8. I have contacted Standard and they say bloating is definitely an issue with this clay-- so not just a bad batch. My studio-mate fires at another location sometimes and does not have problem with the clay bloating there. They fire at about 5.5. Standard also indicates to fire at cone 5 but I am trying to ascertain the repercussions of doing so. We use a lot of cone 6 glazes which I have tested at cone 6 and would prefer not to redo all that testing. We use different clays in the studio and I fire all together to get full kilns. I don't want to fire the 266 alone in almost empty kiln-- and also, since I am the one doing the kiln watching, I don't want to do more firings than necessary. I really want to know about other peoples experiences with this particular clay and their experiences with differences of glazes when firing cone 5 vs. cone 6. And also if there is any kind of chart or information giving info on strengths of final work fired at the different cones.
  9. I am researching medium to large electric ceramic kilns for a small studio-- cone 8-10-- and would like to be able to eliminate some choices to help me narrow things down when I get ready to purchase one. The kiln will go into a new studio/garage building which is going up now and I can set up for whatever electrical load I want. My preference is get a front loading kiln but I will consider others if it looks like they would be better overall. The main question is: what manufacturers do you think are best? Are there any manufacturers that are best to avoid? Do any of the manufacturers put any special features in their kilns that make them more desirable, reliable, easier to operate, protect elements more, are safer, etc. Which have the longest lasting elements? Which are the best value? What are the most important options to consider getting? If cost is not a factor is it a good idea to get APM elements or not worth it? If cost is not a factor is it a good idea to get S-thermocouple or not worth it? Are there any other add-ons that would be a really good idea (if cost not a factor)? Is there anything I should look for in particular for digital controllers? If kiln comes with a digital controller is there any other equipment I need? (Some offer pyrometers as an additional option-- but is one needed?) The manufacturers, of course all claim they have the best kilns and that their features are the best but it is hard to know how much is marketing and how much is real. I would like to know what potters use the most and like the most. Any insights you can give me would be appreciated. Cheers, Amy PS-- cost is a factor in reality of course but I want to get an idea of what options are essential and which are just more than is really needed.
  10. plumcreative

    What Kind Of Kiln Shelves To Use?

    I have now own two L&L Kilns and the investment is worth it. They now have a smaller front loader than the Paragons-- perfect size for my small studio. And, I added on the Genesis Kiln controller-- it is super. You can easily program it without having to remember a bunch of codes. We have high alumina shelves and have been using them regularly for more than a year. They have not warped and work great. To fit the new kiln better I got 16x16 inch shelves and had some cut in half. Our cuts were kind of ragged-- due to haste-- but they work just fine.
  11. plumcreative

    Stainless Steel In Kiln?

    Thanks for the input everyone. You have pretty much confirmed what I already knew but was unwilling to accept ;>) I have some kathal rod and will probably just have to get more of those. I still may see if I can get some high tech thin ceramic rods to test too. If I get any interesting findings I will post. Cheers, Amy
  12. Hi all I make glass beads and also make pottery. For the glass bead making we use stainless steel rods coated with bead release when forming the beads with a torch. What I am wondering is-- if I coat the steel rods with bead release can I use them for firing beads in a cone 6 electric kiln? I see that people talk about using Kathal wire but I am wanting something that will be thicker and bend less. Any advice you can give regarding glazing beads in cone 6 environment would be welcome. Cheers, Amy
  13. plumcreative

    Stainless Steel In Kiln?

    I have questions along the same lines as those posed in this discussion. If I were to use a bead release on stainless steel rod would that make the rod usable in cone 6 electric kiln or would the stainless steel still just disintegrate? Also, would stainless steel be detrimental to the kiln elements in cone 6 electric? I am trying to find stable rods, around 1/8th inch in size, to use and reuse in kiln for glazing ceramic beads. Also, a related question, are there any ceramic type rods that might work for this purpose? Thanks
  14. plumcreative

    Bisque Firing Cone 6 Stoneware

    I would also like to thank everyone for giving this advice. I was going to ask the exact a similar question and found just the right advice here. Super!
  15. Hi everyone I am wondering if anyone has experience using these trimming devices or owns them and gave give me opinions and advice. Griffin Grip A while ago I was able to try the Griffin Grip and thought it was very handy-- especially because I was having difficulty trimming a new clay I am working with. And, it seems like a good way to speed things up with centering pieces for trimming. I liked how all the grips move together. Bailey Quick Trim The Bailey grips seem to move independently-- and I can see pluses and minuses to this. It would be advantageous when you want to trim something that is not circular at the top-- however, having to adjust all 4 grips seems like it would be more time consuming. Of course the cost difference it certainly a factor too. So, my questions are: Have you tried either or both of these and what are your opinions of them? Do you own one of them? If so, how did you choose? Are there any other helpful tools for trimming that you would recommend that will make things easier? Thanks for any advice you can give. Cheers, Amy
  16. plumcreative

    Printing Decals?

    I have read that the toner you need is MICR toner. This is check printing toner which requires iron in it so check readers can read the info. Toner cartridges 85A and 12A work. You can find good resources here: http://rothshank.com/justins-work/decal-resources/ My questions: I currently do not have my own kiln and work at school near my home. They only fire to cone 6. They never do any lower temperature firings. So I am wondering if anyone has done any work with the laser printed decals at cone 6. If you have fired them at cone 6, did you apply the decal on bisque and apply glaze over it? Or did you apply decal over glaze? What brand/type of decal paper did you use? Have you tried the decals on cone 6 porcelain? (Like Laguna Frost). I am going to try experimenting with applying to leather hard cone 6 porcelain. Has anyone tried this? Thanks
  17. It is definitely interesting. I just like learning new stuff.
  18. I did a little searching and found: http://mypottery.blog.com/2013/01/09/hybrid-electric-gas-kiln/ I am not going to plan on getting anything like this in the near future-- just thought it was interesting.
  19. I am planning to just fire to cone 6 at this point since that is what they do at community college I go to. They have both electric and gas kilns there but I have not done much reduction work. Someday I may want to try my own gas kiln-- as I very much like to try everything. I was thinking that, if there were some kind of hybrid kiln, it would be a way to try it on my own without having to buy a second kiln.
  20. Thanks. It does seem that L&L keeps coming up as a good way to go for a front loader. The fact that you don't see a lot of them used does seem to say they are held on to or get bought fast if they ever are on the market. And the element holders are one of the things that made me look at the L&Ls in the first place. Thanks for the info.
  21. Both things you say make sense. I hadn't thought to price out the consumables with a kiln. And I read the "pricey kiln" comment to A friend they took it the same way I did but I see what you mean. No hard feelings to anyone it's just that I often see people making completely non-germane comments on posts and think it is better to stay on topic. Adding something unrelated to a useful reply is OK but a totally unhelpful post is, well, unhelpful. (But sorryOldLady if I took it wrong). I've asked questions on Amazon about a product and gotten answers like "I don't know but I think..." When I really just wanted someone who bought the product to tell me some facts about about the thing. In general I have found this site to be extremely helpful and maybe someday I will know enough to add some useful info too. Cheers everyone.
  22. Thanks Mark C. This is exactly the kind of info that helps me figure things out. Cheers, Amy
  23. The ones I was looking at were significantly less than that. Definitely under $10K. But-- even though this is really none of your business-- I've worked hard for more than 35 years and have saved enough to get a few things I want in life. At this point I am just researching and learning about kilns. Bottom line: I didn't post on this list to get judged-- I posted on it to get info. Please don't waste my time. "putting you down does not raise me up." Interesting.
  24. Hi again everyone, I was looking as Ceramics Monthly and saw an ad for Geil Kilns. (www.kilns.com) Has anyone had any experience with them? Before now I've not heard of them. It looks like they have a very nice easy element changing system. I am looking at the EHW8 and EHW12 electric kilns.These have elements on the floor and roof and two sides-- instead of on the door and back like L&L. Is there any advantage or disadvantage to having them on the top and bottom? The smaller kiln also has fiber instead of brick on the door. Would this make any difference? Another kiln they have is called a "medium duty" kiln and it does oxidation and reduction and can use propane tanks for gas. I've never seen this type of kiln before. Has anyone ever used a dual purpose kiln like this-- one that works with propane like this one does? Thanks, Amy
  25. Can you point me to the "make your own" versions of these? Not sure how to word a search.

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