Jump to content

Salvage Glaze with Too Much Water

Recommended Posts

So I’m new to getting glazing figured out. And I got really thrown off by the “whole milk consistency” rule I kept hearing about mixing glaze. And subsequently, I have seen correctly mixed glazed and I don’t think those people know what whole milk looks like.. so long story short, I got WAY too much water in my glazed and I’m trying to salvage them. 

I spoke with a person at the closest pottery store and they suggested I add APT-II or brushing medium to thicken them up. I added the APT and it did thicken them up some. They were at varying degrees of watery. I gave up and dumped the worst ones. I’m only working in pints right now so it wasn’t that big of a loss. But I’m still working on the rest which still aren’t quite there. 

I have 2 questions:

1. My brushing medium says mix 1 tsp to 1lb of dry glaze. My glaze is already mixed and not dry. I read that I should add 1-2 tsp to a gallon of warm water and let set for 24 hrs. My questions is why does it need to be a gallon? I don’t know if they are saying to make a whole gallon and just use that water when you are first mixing your glaze or add it to your mixed glaze. Can I just disolve a 1/2tsp of the medium in a little water and add it to my mixed watery glaze? 

2.  Do you have a better idea? Is there another way to thicken these up or should I scrap it all and start over? I have about 8 different messed up glazed. 

I apologive for my naïveté. The pottery store in my area is closed for another 3 days and I’d like to get this show on the road so I’m turning to you guys. You have been very helpful in the past. Thank you!

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Well the " to a gallon" is just a ratio! 

So if you have a pint...divide by 8

Have you fired your watery glaze to see if it is infact too thin?

If not containing soluble ingredients  it is possible with some glazes to allow it to settle for a time and then decant some of the water from the top of container. Not too many ingredients are soluble..give that a go.

Try the settling first would be my advice right now.

In future  mix glaze with minimum water and add more gradually.  Glaze thickness is a bit experiential  and differs with temp. Of bisqueware and actual effect desired.

Test tiles help.

The old dipping hand in and seeing the wrinkles through the glaze is prob. frowned on nowadays but works for me with nontoxic glazes.

Thickening a glaze with a product may "space" the glaze ingredients so the actual glaze layer ends up too thin imo

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

All too complicated!  And no don’t throw them out!  Wouldn’t bother with additives unless you specifically need them.

1.  (Deleted - not a good idea).

2.  Let your glaze bucket sit for a while and water will evaporate off.

3. Let your glaze bucket sit for a while and you will probably be able to scoop or sponge water off the top.

4.  Forget the dairy products!  Find out what specific gravity your glaze should be a figure out how to measure that, either from these forums (search) or from somewhere on the web.

5.  Flocculate your glazes.  Again, see many discussions on these forums and in pottery books on this topic.  But note that this can only partially address excess water (specific gravity) problems.  Bottom line is that your glazes should be the right specific gravity in the first place.

Edited by curt
More thoughts and a deletion.

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

I agree with Curt on point #2...since you're dealing with pints, just pour them into bowls or buckets of an appropriate size and let the water evaporate to a point where you can get the specific gravity right for application. 


Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Are you going to be brushing the glazes or dipping?  Do you have more of the dry powdered glazes or did you mix them all with water? Do you have an accurate set of scales?

Edited by Min
added a thought

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

I describe the proper thickness in my studio as really good chocolate milk. The kind that leaves a layer on the inside of your mouth.

I would not add the gum solution to your glaze unless you plan on brushing them on, in which case that should have been done in the first place. If you plan on dipping, you'll just end up with a thin layer of glaze because there's too much water in the mix. Let it evaporate for a few days.

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now


Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use.