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Cone advice


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#1 pkbrier

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Posted 22 February 2012 - 07:19 PM

I am back to throwing again after taking a break of over 30yrs. I've set up a basement studio and getting back into it. I remember most things (least about the throwing/trimming process). Call me stupid but I remember little about glazes. Tell me the pros and cons of firing in cone 6 vs cone 10. I am looking at kilns and need to know. Also, any advice on a kiln? Looking at the Skutt 1018.

#2 Mark C.

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Posted 22 February 2012 - 07:57 PM

You will hear a lot about cone 6 as many here fire to that.
So I'll stick to my experience at cone 10
I'm an old school cone 10/11 reduction porcelain guy who tries to make the most durable/tough/non breakable functional pottery I can.
For me thats cone 10 all the way-call me stupid but I feel porcelain is just plain stronger at cone 10
The cone 6 pots we did a breakage test on where not as tough as the cone 10 ones we destroyed side by side (this was non technical test)
The glaze palette I know and use for almost 4 decades is in cone 10-the difference in firing cost in a large gas kiln cone 6-to 10 for me is a few mugs or 3 sponge holders or 4 spoonrests-The footprint on the earth -well potters are not light on the planet lets get used to that. I'm realistic.

As you are looking at electrics the cost is worth considering as Electricity will be costly-also the small size of most electrics keep you from putting much ware in them so cone 6 makes more sense as you cannot just add more wares to cover the higher costs of cone 10-If you like cone 10 pots/glazes go for it if its all cost related cone 6 is cheaper. Get a 3 inch wall for better performance and insulation either way.
Mark
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#3 KellyRainey

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Posted 22 February 2012 - 09:17 PM

I am back to throwing again after taking a break of over 30yrs. I've set up a basement studio and getting back into it. I remember most things (least about the throwing/trimming process). Call me stupid but I remember little about glazes. Tell me the pros and cons of firing in cone 6 vs cone 10. I am looking at kilns and need to know. Also, any advice on a kiln? Looking at the Skutt 1018.


I use mainly cone 6 and under. However, I bought a kiln that would accommodate me if I chose to use cone 10 later on down the road. As for Kilns I have a Skutt KM1027-3 (3 being 3 inch brick). I love it. I am not a potter, I am a hand builder, that is all my work is either slabs, pinch, coil, etc. It also holds a lot but is not too large that it takes forever to have enough ware to fill it to fire... I also love the The Lid Lifter - came standard on mine but can be added to other 10 & 12 sided Skutt kilns. I swear I can lift the lid with my pinky and given the fact that weigh just over 103 lbs I needed it....

No matter what your choice, all I can say is probably something you will remember from you when you working before - think about your future needs - the last thing one wants to do is buy too small or too low of a cone and find out later on down the road that they produce more than the kiln can handle or that they want to start firing at cone 10...

Good Luck.

Kelly

#4 TJR

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Posted 23 February 2012 - 10:41 AM

I am a stoneware/porcelain man myself, so I fire to Cone 10. I bisque in my studio, and fire with a buddy who has one of the last gas kilns in the city.
I personally don't like Cone 6 because of the chalky /porous clay body.
What you have to think about is wear and tear on your electric kiln. I probably wouldn't fire Cone 10 in an electric because of constantly replacing element.
There is also low fire to consider. You could do Majolica and have one glaze with stains, and fire to cone 04/03.
That's my 2 cents.
TJR

#5 Chris Campbell

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Posted 23 February 2012 - 11:07 AM

Cone 10 is hard on electric kilns ... yes, they are designed to go that high but it takes a long time and wears on the elements.
That said, I fire to Cone 10 because I love porcelain. If I could get the same results at 6 or 5 or whatever I would switch.
My recommendations for a kiln is to buy bigger than you think you need and one that can fire to 10 if you need to ... because you never know!:D

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