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BornonSunsetCeramics

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  1. Kiln lid not flush...

    I have a Skutt KM 1027 - 3 (only 9 firings so far) and it has a latch on the side that supports the lid at 3 levels for venting. They advise you to you this and to use the lowest level to close the kiln. However, I noticed that it isn't 100% flush when I latch the lid. I can't see fire through it, and I couldn't even measure the opening it's so small, but it's not flush. I thought perhaps this was intentional for oxygen flow, but now I'm thinking I just drop the lid and say to hell with this latch when glaze firing. thoughts? My pieces that were at the top were definitely under-fired... could this space be to blame? I now know to use a set of cones on each shelf to know for sure how hot my kiln is getting at each level. I only have a thermocouple in the middle. thanks for any and all advice!
  2. Bloaty Mc-Bloatface

    Also, Min, can I just say how appreciative I am that you went to the Aardvark site and had a look? Thank you for such kind, thorough support. Sending you all the virtual hugs. **they say this clay can go to cone 6 and an employee mentioned that there wasn't THAT big of a difference between cone 5 and 6, but I'm learning that isn't always the case. I love this forum!
  3. Bloaty Mc-Bloatface

    As the true nebwie I am, I used a self supporting cone for my test fire to 04 and it was spot on, and then proceeded to never use one again. I need to go buy some 5 and 6 cones bc I know (even as the zygote I am) that my kiln is firing cooler at the top. I was going to start a new thread for this question but if you're still reading... I have a Skutt KM 1027 - 3 (only 9 firings so far) and it has a latch on the side that supports the lid at 3 levels for venting. They advise you to you this and to use the lowest level to close the kiln. However, I noticed that it isn't 100% flush when I latch the lid. I can't see fire through it, and I couldn't even measure the opening it's so small, but it's not flush. I thought perhaps this was intentional for oxygen flow, but now I'm thinking I just drop the lid and say to hell with this latch when glaze firing. thoughts?
  4. Bloaty Mc-Bloatface

    Thank you! I just reread my post and I didn't add that I bisque fire to 04. I get the feeling that they don't want to admit this clay doesn't like cone 6 because I suggested that and the idea was always shot down. I love the idea of mixing my own glazes but oh boy is that intimidating! Can you recommend a good book or DVD to begin? Thanks so much!
  5. Cone 5 Clay Bodies Fired To Cone 6

    Hi Neil! I've tried just going to 6 with this clay and it bloated as well. The last firing was a batch that I ran custom bisque firing on before the glaze fire (as opposed to just running the Skutt "slow" program that comes on the kiln. I've fired it to cone 5 with no issue, I just wasn't thrilled with my glaze. Can you recommend a soak time at cone 5? Thanks!
  6. Cone 5 Clay Bodies Fired To Cone 6

    I'm having issues with an Aardvark cone 5 clay body right now! Particularly, SBF, a clay body I love to throw but when fired to cone 6... bloat!! I even used Steve's custom bisque firing problem to try to rid the issue (iron - gases) and alas, my glaze fire to cone 6 with a 10 minute soak came out bloated. At cone 5 it fired fine, and they assured me that with little difference between 5 and 6 it would be ok, and I trust them, so I'm over here scratching my head. At 5 I wasn't in love with my glaze maturation so I'm curious how long I can soak at 5 before bloating occurs...
  7. Bloaty Mc-Bloatface

    Hello lovely ceramics people! I've been having some bloat issues with one particular clay body. It's a buff cone 5/6. It's made by the ceramics store I use here in southern cal. Here's the scoop: When fired previously up to cone 5, there was zero bloat but I wasn't too pleased with my glaze results (Amaco's potter's choice - not in attached photo) so I fired up to cone 6, and first had the bloat. I called my clay shop and spoke to their clay-kiln guy (lovely and helpful) and he gave me his custom bisque program that he said would help with specifically with inorganic burnouts (he said something about iron?) that can happen with darker clays. Again, this is a buff, not something as dark as Black Mt. but he said this was the issue. Then I fired the next batch using the nifty bisque program to cone 6 and soaked for 10 minutes. The only modification I made was to do 8 hours in the candling phase instead of 12 as written, because I know my pieces are bone dry before I load my kiln. I was very hopeful for this next batch until... bloat again! We spoke today and he still believes the iron is the issue, but I'm unsure of what to do next. Do you think this clay isn't stable at cone 6? I know there isn't technically a huge difference in temp between cone 5 and 6 but I'm tempted to take some old bisque pieces that I have stored away and test them at cone 5. That brings us back to the issue of glaze maturation and so I'd like to let the pieces soak at cone 5 -- how long do you think is adequate? Could cone 5 and a long soak be the solution? I adore throwing this clay body, and I really feel like my throwing skills have improved due in part to the nature of this clay, so I'm hoping that I can figure this out and keep using it... plus I have at least 200 lbs of it sitting on a shelf in my garage that I'd hate to not use. I've attached one of my bloated pieces and the bisque program I used during this process. Please excuse my pencil scribble on the firing program... I was trying to figure out total firing time so I could drop the lid at the appropriate time. **my matte white glaze also made by my local store appears underfired? over fired? So many issues for this newbie. If you're still reading this... thank you! I truly appreciate the wisdom of this group! cheers, alli
  8. Bulk Corks For Jars

    Hey gang, I've been paying way too much at local ceramic shop for corks. There has to be somewhere online I can buy them in bulk, right? Anyone found a good seller of quality corks (in various sizes) that they wouldn't mind sharing? Thanks!
  9. Where Are The Good Stamps?!

    Which brand do you use?
  10. Where Are The Good Stamps?!

    Hey gang, The rubber stamps I bought from my local clay store are lame. They're too soft (rubber) and not deep enough so I keep getting the impression of the stamp handle around the letters on my pieces. I use a plastic signature stamp to finish my work that was printed using a 3d printer; it has sharp edges that works great, but it's way to expensive to buy a complete alphabet. What's the secret? There's got to be one! What do you all use if you want to write text on your work? Thanks in advance. Alli
  11. 2.5 Or 3In Fire Brick - Pros/cons?

    Would I be better off getting a ConeArt? Can that brand go to cone 9/10 more often than the Skutt?
  12. 2.5 Or 3In Fire Brick - Pros/cons?

    Thank you so much, Neil! You've been such a wonderful help. I really appreciated your thoughtful and detailed responses (this and from the last thread). 3" it is!
  13. 2.5 Or 3In Fire Brick - Pros/cons?

    Hi there, I'm going to be purchasing a new KM Skutt 1027 kiln for my home studio and I'm wondering about which size fire brick to purchase. Right now I have an old 1027 that needs work I'm unable to do myself and don't have the time to have done (also don't want to sink any more money into it) so I'm going to sell it on CL. I have the shelves for that size and if I go up to the 3in, I'll need all new shelves. Is the 3in worth having to to buy all new shelves? Is it really more cost effective energy-wise and does the extra insulation really make a noticeable difference for glaze cooling? I'll loose a little space on the inside, too which is a factor. I'm super new to all of this and I'll upgrade the shelves if it's really worth it since this is a kiln I plan to use for many years. All thoughts and suggestions are welcome! Thanks so much!
  14. How Long To Reach Cone 9? Is It My Kiln?

    Ok that makes sense. How long will it take to cool to the point of unloading without damaging the pots any further?
  15. How Long To Reach Cone 9? Is It My Kiln?

    Ok. Calling it quits. Can I finish firing the pieces at a later time or are they ruined now?
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