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Found 81 results

  1. So, ive created this account specifically for help! ive been given two very old electric kilns, seems to be from the 70s perhaps? anyways, one is an American Beauty electric kiln model number: AB18 this thing has four switches and a kiln sitter. seems to be in relatively good condition from what my ceramic instructor had said. Problem is ive never fired a kiln and there is almost zero information on the kilns manual or even the company that produced the kiln. I find that almost unbelievable seeing as I live 5 miles from the city the kiln company was located. If anyone has any further information of this specific model of kiln that would help immensely !! Next, I have a Cress electric kiln model number : B-23-HB ive found an online manual for the company kilns but they're all for up-to-date kilns.. This model has a upper and lower nobs for high and low firing. anyone have any ideas because im totally fresh to anything in regards to firing kilns. is it worth keeping or should I try to get a more updated kiln? Help! thank you in advance!
  2. Hi, I have this problem of cracking or clay splitting when throwing in the wheel, pls find the attached picture and also, after firing at cone 08, the clay has a lot of surface cracks and sometimes structural cracks pls find the attached pic, pls advise why this is happening and how to avoid this in future. Thanks.
  3. BornonSunsetCeramics

    Reglaze tips needed!

    Just a quick question about re-firing work. I wasn't happy with some details around a logo that I carved in to my pieces so I've fixed them with glaze (and also filled a few pinholes) - my question is whether or not I need to be as meticulous about dust and fingerprints on these like you do with glaze on bisque. I had to hold them firmly and work slowly to fix my glaze errors from the past firing. I'm feeling like that stuff (oil from my hands, dust) will burn off before the glaze melts again since its technically laying over top of a hardened/fired glaze and not absorbing into un-fired glaze... thoughts? Thanks so much, friends!
  4. Hi everyone, I recently fired a gas kiln but there was very poor reduction and my pieces (with a celadon glaze) came out oxidised. Would it work to refire these same pieces in a fully-functioning gas kiln? Is there any reason the might not reduce as they have already been high-fired? Thank you!
  5. Hey guys...help! So I have been doing low fire work (jewelry) for years and have just ventured into mid fire work. My question is likely somewhat dumb but here goes. I purchased my first bit of cone 5-6 stoneware clay and had a question about temps. With my work that I have been doing in low fire, I bisque fire to cone 04 then glaze fire to 06. What temp do I bisque fire the stoneware? Not knowing any better, I bisque fired it to cone 5 and then glaze fired it to cone 5 and none of the glazes turned out to look like they were supposed to. Thanks in advance for the help.
  6. Hello I have recently acquired a small kiln for use at home (Hobbytech 40). It works and I’m happy with it for the most part, but when I have bisque fired plates, they crack during firing, down the middle to about halfway across the plate. This must be a fault when I’m making the items. Can anyone tell me what could be causing this so that I don’t waste efforts making anymore to be disappointed when they’re fired? I’ve not had this happen with plates I’ve made in my ceramic lessons. Some are wheel thrown, some are made from slabs. Clay bodies used are lavafleck stoneware, or white special stoneware. Are these plates now only good for the bin? Photos attached.
  7. hello I have just purchased a second hand cromartie hobbytech 40 kiln with an lt3k kiln sitter, having never fired my own work (I have always had a technician do it) I was wondering about the ramping speed to fire stoneware. The kiln has a dial on the side from 1 to 4 and then full, I was wondering how long I should leave between each increase in power. as I understand it too quick an increase in temperature could cause the clay to break due to the steam. here is a picture of the kiln dial. also the Kiln has a peep hole in the side and a vent hole on top, should I leave both open during firing? regards Liam
  8. Hello, I have been making terracotta tiles & glazing them in the Majolica style. The tiles were bisque fired to 950 and the 3 coats of white glaze applied to tiles with decoration painted on the surface. The white glaze was a white glossy glaze not a Tin Glaze. Pin holing was apparent on surface of glaze before firing and remained after firing to 1080. Anybody got any advice please ?
  9. I'm self-taught and a relative newbie. I am so confused about glaze & bisque firing in terms of venting, peep holes, and/or cracking the lid. I have an electric kiln with digital controller and it's outside so I have no extra ventilating system. My Evenheat kiln has one small hole in the top that does not have a plug (always open) and one side peephole with a plug. 1)when bisque firing, does the lid need to be cracked and/or the peephole open for any part of the firing? 2)when glaze firing, same questions? Thank you for any insights.
  10. As a newcomer to firing my own work can anyone explain cone tempretures? I have an electric kiln with a digital temperature control so i don't use cones. So much advice refers to firing to cone 06 or 04... I've tried researching this but can't find a definitive answer. If kilns have advanced to accurate digital control why do i need cones and why can't firing advice refer to given tempretures? Any advice will be greatly received.
  11. Hi!! I have just finished a sculpture of a baby using smooth red clay. This is my third clay sculpture, but first without a teacher to guide me. With my previous sculptures, it was easier to remove the armatures.. there were less detailed areas which made it less traumatic to cut open/join back together. I was also far less particular about my sculptures then as can be seen by the fact I removed the armatures far too early. Is it okay for me to leave the paper inside when I fire it? Also, how slowly should I dry it to make sure fingers, toes and ears don't crack? Any other advice? Thanks in advance
  12. I have just finished a sculpture out of what the package describes as "natural clay". The brand name is "craft smart" out of Texas. The piece has dried in air for over a week, and is what I would call "green" (if I remember correctly from high school art). I want to create a silicone mold of the original to create a series of reproductions, but I'm worried about the original surviving the process,as there are some thin sections. Would low temp firing, say in my oven, strengthen the clay, or am I at risk of blowing this up?
  13. Disclaimers : 1) This is more of a theoretical question. 2) I am not a potter/ceramic person of any sort. 3) all my knowledge of pottery, tile making come from youtube videos and internet. 4) actually my question has more to do with making TerraCotta (or any other low fire, easily available clay - not the high quality, high temp porcelain etc.) articles like tiles, pipes etc. Short Version: If for some reason you have to shut off the kiln halfway during firing (when the pieces are at around 1080F/600C), let them all cool down and restart firing again and go all the way till bisque/glaze temperatures. Will this work or is it just not acceptable and ruin the pieces completely because you broke the process halfway? The real reason for asking however is this: I am wondering whether I can design a solar kiln to do pottery & tile making (at least partially replace fuel/electricity needs) but it can only function the following way... So, will this work? All heating cycles can only be 7-8 hours long, i.e., when the sun shines; - Day 1 (or more than one day): drying using warm air at <212F/100C, assume this is waste heat coming from somewhere else - think of warm dry air from Air Conditioners' condenser coils. Slow self cool down once sun goes away every day. Can be more than one day if need be. - Day 2: heating from room temperature to 1080F/600C, once again during 7 hours long period. But can't go above this temperature. Heat source is in the form of hot air at a temperature a bit higher than this. Slow self cooling once the sun goes away - may not go all the way down to room temp but definitely losing a lot of heat. - Day 3: heating from room temperature (again, worst case scenario) to 1800F/1000C or whatever bisque temperatures are, in just 7 hours (yes!). Source of heat: electric heating elements. Slow self cooling once the sun goes away. Will this work? Or the interruption in the heating midway is unacceptable? Also, can the pieces be moved around a little bit between Day 2 & Day 3? I am differentiating these two days in case you're wondering, apart form what energy pattern is possible, by chemistry: End of Day 2 to me means calcining the clay - losing all chemically bound water and converting to metakaolin; hoping Day 3 energy input will be lower but only demanding high temperatures. I can give you the expected energy breakdown if anyone is interested in correcting me if I am wrong. I have TONs more questions; I just don't know whether I am and my questions belong here. Please let me know if I am. I really will/do appreciate your inputs. I am sitting and dreaming about moving mirrors covering at least 100 sqft if not more.
  14. I have a Skutt KM822 I have been firing since I bought it new in March 2013. I fire to cone 6 in it. Lately I have noticed a change in when the relays "click." Let me preface by saying the firing I did last week I got error code 1. Kiln stalled out at 2177. I fire to 2210 with a 10 min hold. It was a very hot day when I did this firing, was mid afternoon when the error code 1 came on. I have multiple fans going to move air around in my kiln shed. I did diagnostic test and for amp, voltage. All OK. I also did a test fire of the kiln to 1100 with a 30 min hold and checked every peephole to see if elements all on. They were and I heard relays clicking the entire firing. OK..here is the issue. I just completed another cone 6 firing. I do ramp/hold program. Modified from one I saw online here in this forum. All are degrees Fahrenheit 150 to 250 degrees no hold 400 to 1900 no hold 130 to 2210 Hold 10-13 min. This firing I heard the relays clicking at the beginning. When I checked at 1700 degress no clicking but the temp rising. Checked again at 1923 and I hear clicking relays. Checked again at 2127 no relays sounds but the temp rising. I didn't hear the relays click again until I was in the hold at the end. The temp during the hold rose to 2217 and then the relays began clicking and the temp dropped to 2210. I have fired a manual Skutt for decades, so digital is foreign to me still. I will probably call Skutt this week, but curious if this sounds normal or not to those of you who have more digital firing experience than I do. Appreciate any insight!
  15. Being a less-than-tall person, I bought an L&L 18" deep kiln - I couldn't reach the bottom of the 27â€ers. Kiln works great, tho I have to add degrees to the cone offset for 04 bisquing, and remove some from cone 6, ( according to my witness cones). Actually right now I’m using the cone 5 setting and that seems to get my 6 cone to the right spot. My e28s has 4 elements and 2 thermocouples, and this creates some challenges. I get even responses from my witness cones only if I fire with only 2 shelves. With 3 shelves in, the witness cones vary widely. I’ve tried every variation on shelf placement I can think of, including staggering and using 2 1/2 half shelves. The manufacturer says that you need 2 elements and 1 thermocouple per shelf, and I’m pretty sure I also read that the shelves should clear the elements. With my kiln , that means you can only have 2 shelves in, and when I follow these guidelines the kiln gods do favor me with matching witness cones. This has all turned out not to be a big problem for me anyway, because I haven’t had as much time as I’d hoped I would to be making stuff. Also running the kiln seems to cost me only about $10 a month for 3-4 firings. I expected the cost to be much higher. I'm making less at one time, but also getting more instant gratification, (instant being a relative term when applied to a slowly cooling kiln). Should I be less concerned about matching cones? I assume it's a matter of degree. It can be more than 1 cone. Also, I have been "lidding" the load with the 2 unused half shelves because I feel I should have them in there to increase the thermal mass, which is already 1/3 less than what the kiln could hold. Any thoughts on that? Thank you in advance for your advice and experience Irene in NJ
  16. I'm working with B3Brown (Laguna) and I really like the color and surface texture when it is fired (C5). BUT stoneware glazes I use are bubbly/pin holed and dull - not matte but dull in color and surface. Lower fire glazes are fine if I refire at 05. I'm planning to bisque, fire to maturity, and then glaze fire at lowfire range. My question is, can I skip the bisque firing and fire greenware to cone 5, glaze, and fire to cone 05? Would that be too much shock for the greenware? I will test as needed but thought someone might know. Thanks!
  17. Hi everyone, What will happen to bisque work that has fired too hot for too long? I fired a bisque on Thursday night, and realized on Tuesday morning when I checked it that it was still at 1234 degrees and not cooling. It said "Complete". I hit stop, and it didn't begin cooling (although said Idle), so I turned off the circuit breaker. I have a kiln electrician coming out to check on the kiln, but my biggest concern is the work inside (not my work, but student work). I assume it's ruined?
  18. Hey y'all, I've been lurking for awhile but haven't done much posting yet. I was curious about flashing slips. I have a converted gas kiln (which works very well and I got a lot of really good info from another thread in this forum -- thanks!) and am still relatively new at mixing glazes. (Slowly) Developing practical understanding! I really love the look of flashing slips and would love to incorporate them into my work. Though, being that this kiln was converted from electric and is made up of soft insulating brick, I'm a little concerned that atmospheric firings will flux down the bricks, so I haven't messed with it. The kiln's brick wasn't in the best shape to begin with, but I put some love into it and would rather not be wasteful. So I'm curious if y'all have any ideas about circumventing the notion of atmospheric firings to achieve a flashing effect? Might one spray ash on the surface of the slip? Mix more soda ash into the slip? Make a solution and simply brush it on top? Are any of these methods viable? I anticipate being advised to use saggars, which I'm not crazy about as the kiln just barely breaks through a "medium class" for top-loaders -- not a whole lot of space. Hopefully can circumvent the use of them, too. Holding my breath over here for a guru's advice! Thanks! Kevin
  19. starsbythedoor

    Glaze Melding

    Hi everyone! I am am new to ceramics after moving to it from metal clay. Things are going well but there is one constant error. I have a small jewellery kiln and it fires to the correct temp and the ceramic and glaze is working fine APART from where the object touches the kiln shelf on a glaze fire. I make pendants and rings mostly and it is so upsetting to have the items ruined or stuck to the shelf!! I use low fire stoneware clay and low fire glazes. So my question is what do I fire my pieces on. I have seen metal kiln furniture, is that the way forward? I am hoping you can help me, if you need any more info from me let me know! Thank you! Emma xxx
  20. dazzlepottery

    Propping Kiln Lid

    When I am firing my electric kiln, I start with the lid propped open about 2 inches and the top peephole out. Then at around 1000 degrees F I shut the lid. The top peephole is open the whole time. I understand that the lid needs to be propped to allow moisture and gasses to escape in the early stages of firing. My questions are: 1) is 1000F an appropriate temp to close the lid? 2) Is it necessary to prop the lid on a ^6 glaze firing as well as the bisque, or only during the bisque (^06) I have been firing this way for a couple years and the pots always come out well. However the lid has badly cracked on both the inside and outside, necessitating repair with kiln cement. I have a large electric Skutt Kiln (I think it's the 1227). Even with my repair, it is all fractured and occasionally falls onto the pots below. The metal handle is also badly rusted and corroded, an issue I didn't notice when I bought this kiln used a couple years ago. I notice when I close the lid on an 1000F kiln it makes a soft settling crackling noise. I am curious if the cracking lid is from thermal shock when it goes from hot room temp to 1000F. Because of this, i wonder if it's better not to close it so late (and hot) in the firing. Perhaps it's just time for an envirovent. Is it normal for a lid to start to deteriorate like this? The newer versions of my kiln are made with the hydraulic lid lifter, which I assume lifts it more evenly, without the torque from supporting it on just one part. Please let me know if anyone else has had this cracking lid issue. -Dana
  21. JamesP

    Firing

    From the album: Gas Kiln

    Turning on the gas
  22. As I search for my perfect clay, I see quite a few that have a very wide firing range. Is a pot that's fired to the low or middle range of that firing range less structurally sound than one fired to its highest end? Does it make a difference other than with the glaze fit? Does it matter in some other way? Or not? Are these ranges realistic? I've been using one with a 4-10 range and also another with a 6-9 range and firing to about cone 5 3/4. Glazes fit fine. But what's actually best for the structure and health and happiness of the pots? My pots are all quite young, but will they age well? Thanks in advance! Irene
  23. Hi, I'm wondering is anyone can offer any advise!! I loaded my kiln about 9pm last night, and after I switched it from low to medium to high, I went to bed like normal. Today around noon I went in to going unload my stuff from the night before and to my surprise my kiln was still running!!! I turned it off right away. After letting it cool a few hours I was able to peak in the top and my trees looked like this!! They are glazed exactly the same as the other tree in the other picture though. I am wondering if maybe my kiln didn't reach temp. it should have which is why it didn't shut off and these did not fire all the way? Or if they fired to much and they are burnt?? Can anyone help me??
  24. davesnyder

    Raku To 05

    Hi, and best holiday wishes and a Merry Christmas to all~ I have a 55Gallon barrel drum Raku kiln, but even with two 300000btu brush torches I cant get past 1600F, and my Amaco Glaze matures at cone five, 1895-1900. Is there a burner that can get me to cone 05, or do I search for lower fie glazes? I've really been trying what I can dream up, but just cant hit that temp. Any Insights would be very helpful. Thanks! I have a 4" port, and a 6" exhaust. I have one layer of kiln blanket, and the 3" barrel bung open for exhaust.
  25. Hey all! First time posting here. I'm new to firing, and i've been having some difficulties getting my kiln to fire to cone 6 properly. Here's my problem: When I check the cones at peak temperature (2180 in my case), the cones are not bent properly yet. Last night I just let it cycle down anyway. However, when I opened my kiln at the end of firing, the cones were overfired (at least at the top of my kiln). I've been slow cooling, so is it possible that the heatwork as the kiln fires down is actually causing the cones to bend further even at lower temps? Firing Schedule: 220/60 - 100 degrees/hr 2000/0 - 350 degrees/hr 2180/15 - 108 degrees/hr (still not getting my kiln up to 2192, but that might just be a problem with the PID or thermocouple) 1400/0 - 125 degrees/hr OFF I have no idea how to tell if my pieces are over/underfired because of this. Do I base it on what the cones were doing at peak temp, or what they looked like at the end of firing??
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