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oldlady

Exactly What Is Going Wrong Here?

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Mark: Nep Sy is now the flux of choice in most ( if not all) clay

 

Marcia: you will never look at clay the same again. After you use nerd,s glaze suspend, you will realize how crappy sodium bentonite is as well.

 

Nerd

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nerd, mea and i tried the porcelain you sent me to test.  you are right, it is wonderful to throw.  it arrived very wet, the box had split from moisture and been resealed by the PO.  wedged it on plaster and used two chunks.  have included photos of 2 bowls, mea did one which i agreed to fire and i did the second, it was a great shape, then i flattened it and put 3 twists in it.  AFTER ALL THAT, the one i made was wired off and picked up by its wide rim, swung around and it hardly sagged.  that was tossed into the bag with the rest of the clay and i intend to use it again.  

 

i did make one slab pot but did not like the way the clay reacted.  it seemed rubbery and flaccid.  maybe it was just too wet even after wedging. the pot is drying but i am not expecting much from it.  thank you for the opportunity to test this clay.  what temp should i fire to?

 

added trimmed pot photos. 7/11

 

trimming was easy but i noticed that the tiny bits that sometimes stick to the trimmed pot would not flick away easily.  the clay was so soft that each touch left a fingerprint.  see last photo, closeup of bottom.

 

 

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Hi Lady,

I have been mixing it with a very small loaner pugmill. Does a whopping 12lbs a load. It is mixed with a very specific moisture content. So if the package was wet enough to break open: sounds like it got wet along the way? Was the plastic bag intact? Several got test samples out of that batch: did not receive any other notes about moisture. It is softer than what most are use to, but that does not effect it's strength. I will test some upcoming test batches for moisture, just to triple check content.

You can throw and wedge as many times as you like. You do not have to wire cut it off the batt, it will release itself when leather hard. In fact, really do not need to wedge it other than to remove moisture from prior throwing. Post your final results when they become available.

Nerd

*** use as little water as possible when throwing: just keeping your hands coated with cream will get the job done. It is a true cone 6 body, so fire accordingly. I checked my test blocks tonight when I get in from work: think I know what happened. I am missing an experimental block from a few months back. I have been using old bags from other materials: that will be fixed as well. Bought poly tubing on a roll, than I can seal on both ends with a pulse sealer. Have to work out the bugs.  So all the information helps.. TY

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nerd,  i just finished the flat slab piece.  when i made it, it was the same thickness as my regular clay but it felt very strange.  i know your intent was to make a clay that would dry slowly but be very strong.  it was a little like trying to form a wet slipsoaked dishcloth into a shape but i did it and allowed it to dry.  i was surprised that when i saw it the next day, it had not flopped totally down on the drywall but the walls were standing relatively straight up and down.  still felt damp.  left it until this morning and wiped the little bits off with a damp sponge, cleaned up the back and wrote on it.  AND THEN THE SURPRISE!!!

 

this material allows for writing, drawing and impressions made by a sharpish tool without leaving crumbs or resisting the tool!  if you have ever tried to do that kind of work, this clay is perfect for it.  after signing it and writing your name so i can identify it as your clay and not my own, i wiped the small bits off into the water bowl with a dry sponge.  came off totally.  no rough edges visible to my naked eye. (i am sure your microscope can find some flaw in it.)  so i began to draw small shapes that are usually not as easy to do.  stylus glided over the surface making any turn i wanted.  

 

my next test will be to color some of it and make a slab that i will paint the colored slip onto.  then i will draw something very complicated through the color and see what happens.  i am not sure how long i should wait but the stuff it did today told me that it can be totally dry and still allow drawing so that is what i plan to do.  

 

for now, pictures.  you will see in the second one that this clay acts just like any true porcelain, the fingerprint wipe marks show clearly.

 

the carpenter is on his way so i can send the trimmed bowl pics later.

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nerd, comments on your comments.  i throw with so little water that you might notice that there is no water on the bat i used to throw the flattish bowl.  mea was concerned that i do not use a splash pan but you can see that she did not need one, either.

 

i think the package broke open along one side because the clay inside was so soft that some other heavy package may have been tossed on top and the resulting splat opened the cardboard seam.  did not see any leaks that affected the cardboard box in any way.

 

when i finally stop crying about my imperfect (perfect) clay, i will ask some questions about my little loafers.  

 

added photo showing thinness of mea's bowl before trimming.

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thank you mea and min.  i will add 2% more EPK to my recipe and see what happens.  

 

neil, your suggestions are probably correct but i have to say that it sounds as though you think i am spraying something that looks like water with sand in it and that is the copper falling to the bottom of the jar.  if that is what is happening, why can i not see it?  the thickness of the glaze is TRULY like a mcdonalds milkshake.  how can anything drop to the bottom of that?   yes, i admit that spraying glaze lends itself to some thin spots and some thick.  why is there a sufficient amount of glaze on the thin spots but they have no color?   i am spraying the same way with each piece and the other colors do not slide.  the explanation of copper being a flux makes sense so how do i fix the glaze?  i am adding the EPK as a first try.

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Roberta:
In about two months there will be a Nerd Clay page inside the Krueger Pottery Supply website. It will have this porcelain body, two stoneware bodies, and colored porcelain for cone 6 and cone 04. The Redstone body will be available at some point thereafter.


Nerd

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You have to adjust your thinking and your work habits to work with this porcelain.

1. When it releases from the batt, it is perfect for trimming. Make your initial trim with your favorite tool, then finish with a soft metal rib. The rib will take off the thinnest slivers of clay you have probably seen: and you do not need to burnish afterward.

2. Once you figure out how long it takes to release from the batt (in your studio): then 8-10 hours prior to that is the prime time to carve and detail.

3. Wedge if you want, but not necessary. There is zero memory, and any air bubbles pop as you run across them.

4. You do not need to wire cut off the batt, it will release itself when it hits 15% moisture range. It will not deform, s crack, or crack otherwise due to uneven drying.

5. In normal conditions, it takes 50-100% longer to dry than regular porcelain. You can speed dry it if you wish.

6. It is a true cone 6, so fire until that cone is bent correctly. It is not cone 4-8 ....it is six. The flux molarity is proportioned to that exact cone.

7. When you attach handles, or other decorations: simply swab the areas where the attachment is made: or moisten your finger and tap until you feel It tacking against your finger. It has a plasticitizer that hydrates almost instantly when hit with water, creating a tacky feeling. Caution: be quick in attaching: once it grabs it, it does not like to let go.

8. You can throw, collapse, remove excessive moisture and throw again, as many times as you like. It will not alter the properties.

9. Get cream on your hands when you center, then simply keep the cream  moist. After the initial wetting when coning, only wet your hands, do not put anymore water directly on the clay.

10. You only need to cone one time.

 

Nerd

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all of this post is only my opinion and experience.  i am not saying anything derogatory about your extensive and painstaking research and  the development of your extraordinary porcelain.  it is a possible clay-world bombshell.  i wish you well with its development and distribution.  and i hope to be included in any future testing you think i could manage.

 

1.  my clay releases from my Duron (masonite) bats and has been doing that for many years.  people just do not seem to realize that duron works that way.

2.  i usually apply slip immediately upon throwing because the clay is not soppy wet and takes slip perfectly then.  since i work in series, slipping several at a time allows me to carve the first one immediately after slipping the last.

3.   i do not wedge my clay, just cone it a little.  while throwing your new clay,  i noticed that there were tiny bubbles in your clay but they broke immediately and caused no problems.

4.   i do not wire off the bat.  i am interested in rapid drying.  form it, decorate it, dry it, glaze it, fire it, sell it.

5.   noticed and did not like this feature because i do not put additions onto my pottery, no handles, spouts, stuff in general.

6.   i trust my L&L and go to cone 6.  no hold time at all.  just hit the controller cone 6 slow glaze pre-set temp and it goes off and then cools down to under 150 degrees.  period.

7.   this is why i had a hard time cleaning off the little bits that clung to the trimmed base.

8.   this may be the best feature of your new clay.

9.   funny, i have been doing this exact thing for many years.

10. that sounds great.

 

your clay is wonderful in many ways.  the science is impressive, the uses an average potter may put it to can also be impressive. the future uses of this ceramic material is unlimited.

 

 for daily use it just might be a $5,000 solution to several 50 cent problems that we do not all have.

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Lady, the post was made for several out there playing with it, that have not chimed in yet. The field trials were less about clay, as they were proving that my theorems on clay formulation that I have filled pages with on this forum, are correct.

 

Nerd

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> It will not deform, s crack, or crack otherwise due to uneven drying.

 

I don't think you can make this claim just yet. Many thousands of pounds need to be thrown and fired, by potters with a wide range of experience, before you can assess this. With the limited testing that has been done, most commercial clays would pass this test so far. In general, the ceramics world has too many variables to make an absolute statement like "will not."

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Mea:

I like bold statements. The forum is only aware of the testing done in the last month: it is not aware of the year prior with local potters. I understand you are tempering/balancing what I said. Actually, I have been breathing, eating and living clay for the past two plus years: I am ready for a break.

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>I understand you are tempering/balancing what I said

 

That's all I'm trying to do. I want your project to be successful, which will require credible marketing. I just want you to see how this claim looks to another potter. You are making clay in 12 lb batches, so even after a year you should not make an absolute claim.

 

"Formulated to dry slowly and evenly, which greatly reduces common issues such as warping and cracking" is a promise you can stand behind.

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Sorta like it myself Joseph. Yet, I have also absolutely tortured this clay just to see how it will respond. Mea is a master at marketing, I would be foolish not to listen.

 

Min: Krueger Pottery will have to set their prices, so I cannot answer that question. However, I did tell them if it went over $1 a lb, I would not be interested.

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Min: Krueger Pottery will have to set their prices, so I cannot answer that question. However, I did tell them if it went over $1 a lb, I would not be interested.

 

Just a friendly reminder:  any inquiries about cost, locations, etc. should be done privately with Tom and not via the forum.  Terms of use preclude conducting business on the forums.

 

(And now, back to our regularly scheduled programming).

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