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Starting to load a glaze firing,  suppose to have a decent day Tuesday.  I like to open the window in the kiln room when I am firing.   I have a exhaust fan in the ceiling and the Skutt vent system on the kiln but when I am firing my big Skutt I need a little more air.    Denice

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1 hour ago, Hulk said:

Aaah, memories! Our first home had a low crawlspace - get between joists to roll from front to back.

The word "swell" reminds me - suggest long shirtsleeves and pants, both secured with rubber bands (plural), and pants tucked in socks, collar fully buttoned up, and look look look before entering. I find both black widows an' fiddlers (brown recluse) in the oddest places, e.g. in the garage/studio, right where I'd put my hand; tucked up in the garbage can hand hold; outside the front door, between knee and forehead level. 

Full body tyvek coveralls with a hood, respirator and goggles.  We don't really have dangerous spiders where I live, more likely to find a coyote or bear under there than a black widow ;)

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30 minutes ago, Rae Reich said:

If you haven't pulled yourself along by your elbows lately, be prepared to awaken some muscle groups! 

Yes, I'm very sore... Mostly shoulders and knees.  The knees are all bruised up from crawling, didnt think to get some knee pads til I was far too gone for it to matter.  My wife is already tired of hearing my groaning haha

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2 hours ago, Bill Kielb said:

Alright we have waited long enough, time to brag about your first firing.

Haha, I'm bisquing a full load of mugs as we speak.  It's 18x23 and I think I've got around 60 mugs in there.  I need to get a couple new shelves for it, the ones that came with it were well beaten with lowfire glaze and cracked/broken, and the shelves from my old kiln are too small.  No big deal, the shelves for this one are 40 bucks a piece.  

Other than that, the elements seem to be fine so far.  The bottom element is out of it's channel, and seems too small, I pinned it as best I could but it won.  New elements are on my list but will have to wait a bit, 200 bucks for a complete replace.

The good news is, it's getting hot and anything else that comes up will be a whole lot easier to handle than crawling in my crawlspace and running wire.

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3 minutes ago, Bill Kielb said:

Nice work! Congratulations. 

Haha, 80% of the work goes to you and the other helpful people around here.  I'm just so grateful for all of the wonderful folks that make this website into a community.  

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25 minutes ago, liambesaw said:

Haha, 80% of the work goes to you and the other helpful people around here.  I'm just so grateful for all of the wonderful folks that make this website into a community.  

Appreciate the kind words but the community helped with a variety of well meaning opinions and you crawled in and did the work, so hats off to you. Sometimes ya just gotta take the credit.

go first successful bisque firing!

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Nothing on my work table at the moment,  I straighten out my studio and stuck the new self adhesive labels on my chemical containers back on with some Gorilla tape.  I decided to try out my new pottery wheel stool and do a little throwing.  It seems to be alright,  I need to do some more throwing before I am positive.    It is so cold here I can't work in my studio until after noon,  it takes that long for my heater to warm it up.  It is suppose to start warming up tomorrow, it is still suppose to be  around 15 tonight.  BRR   Denice

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10 hours ago, liambesaw said:

Haha, 80% of the work goes to you and the other helpful people around here.  I'm just so grateful for all of the wonderful folks that make this website into a community.  

So how do you feel about the $780 electrician’s quote now, after seeing how much work and expertise was involved?

Edited by GEP

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3 hours ago, GEP said:

So how do you feel about the $780 electrician’s quote now, after seeing how much work and expertise was involved?

That I should have gone to electrician school.  I actually did the $1250+tax quoted work, saved myself 800 dollars.  Crawling in my crawlspace was a pain in the butt but definitely not worth 800.  

If I had done the short run I originally planned on, it would have been CAKE!   

I'm just glad to see glowing red coils, can't wait to open the kiln and see whats inside!

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Making some multi-purpose holders for an April anagama fire.  Need another shelf and a half worth of pieces for a bisque fire. I only need a full shelf for the wood fire, so the rest of the load will be various mid-fire bodies.

 

20190121_230940.jpg

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This week I'll be throwing 3lb bowls, 1 lb bowls and candle holders. Did my 3lb bowls last night, tonight will be 1lb bowls.  I also have a full kiln full of freshly bisqued mugs, will glaze, decorate and fire those this weekend!  I have enough stuff to bisque, so much actually, I should really start doing daily firings til I'm caught up, would save from having to dance around all this greenware.

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Over th'wheel, that's a great idea!

I'm looking at repurposing a small workbench to a wheeled cart (a set of 2" casters on Amaz-ing is ~sixteen bucks) - will it fit over my wheel? hmmm

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We have a tile floor in that room and I decided against casters, instead I cut sections from a scrap piece of that interlocking dense foam flooring and attached to the bottom of the legs, slides easy, takes a little more effort with 300 lbs on the table, but no risk of damaging the grout and/or tile.

Edited by shawnhar

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Got a glaze firing in, was able to fit 40 mugs.  This is a representative sample!  So happy to finally have an electric kiln working!

This week I have a bunch of candles I'm working on, gonna be great!  Right now I have a bunch of lidded containers bisquing, big stuff I have to fire alone, can't really pack it too tight.  Y'all that grew up on electric have no idea how easy youve got it!!!

 

IMG_20190127_141033-1612x1209.jpg

Edited by liambesaw

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Hmm a skilled potter and talented electrician. Nice glaze!

Just  finished our Rays Cream to get rid of pinholes and dial in the perfect amount of movement with trapped titanium crystals.

Funny,  just pulled this out of the ELECTRIC test kiln today. (Sorry, I know  I have it made, but couldn’t resist)

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@liambesaw

The Rays cream is actually the first layer glaze. It’s only colorant is rutile (titanium) so it has always been an overfired matte where if you were lucky you would get a runny matte in which the crystals collected  in the runs and at the bottom where it would turn shades of blue.

Old recipe, pinholes most of the time, bad chemistry and also started out as a Bristol glaze back in the day to get this to melt around cone 4 ish. 

To answer your question Rays cream was the base and I  have a blue fur over the top (rim dipped to 2”) in a very half hazard manner for this test piece.

The rework was to lower the temp with boron, reduce the zinc to only as needed and eliminate the pin holes while bringing the flux ratio to a durable one. 

They like this glaze because as a runny matte anything over it or it over a smooth glaze has movement. It usually looks pretty good with minimal effort which is what everyone wants Updating this to a more boron controlled melt allows easy dial in of how much run. From there we just need to dial in  the thickness for one dip, two dip, three dip. So SPG for the interns after testing is important for consistent results. Right now this works fine at 140% water to dry glaze at mix time. I think the final dipping thickness will be 135 - 138 ish so a bit thin.

three second dips are the norm in our studio.

I will message you the write up to the resident artists if you want the test recipe to try, just drop me a note.

some generic pics of what this can do depending upon application thickness. All the pinholes, crazing and imperfections have been designed out of it at this point and it works on low expansion porcelain. Now time for the studio artists to figure out what they don’t like about it.

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Edited by Bill Kielb

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Very nice, almost bone-like.  Was the pinholing from high loi?  When I put my glazes into insight I know that the loi figures are a rough guess, but I try to keep mine low by subbing out whiting and fiddling.

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I was trained on a large gas kiln and never used electric until a few years ago. Having occasional opportunities to get into community wood firings and raku firing, I'm a happy camper. I finally got  OK with the fact that as much as I loved making my own clay bodies and glazes, and was pretty good at it, my situation just doesn't accommodate that today.  So I am using commercial bodies and glazes and find I like them just fine. I did a head-adjustment on myself to get out from under the old tendency to think gas/wood was superior to electric and that not mixing your own stuff is sort of a petty crime. Now I'm working to get Ok with limited throwing facility and getting into an appreciation of the conceptual and process aspects of hand-building.

My workbench today has a thrown and altered bowl form, then hand-worked with stamped, paddled, & incised techniques. I like how much work actually goes into making something look "other-than" a properly, nicely, thrown bowl.  

 

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