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Red Rocks

Producing Dinner Ware

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2) Prices:

5" rice bowl $18

6.75" rice bowl $24

12.5" round platter $58

18.5" oval platter, depends on complexity ~$84

 

3) Demand up or down:

Up for table serving ware. I don't produce place settings, so hard to tell for dinner sets.

 

4) Pull through for other pieces:

Yes, usually if the purchaser is buying for themselves.

 

5) For themselves or gifts:

Almost a third have told me the items were to be gifts.

 

6) Marketing:

Serving platters do well in wedding registries.

 

 

I would love to hear more about how you work with wedding registries? It seems to me that this is a great outlet of ceramics, especially dinnerware and assoicated pieces.

Thanks

 

 

Etsy has wedding registries available on their online site, any visitor can create a registry and add items from any shop. Their wedding category is directed which I take to mean juried/curated, but any item from any category can still be added to a registry.

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2) Prices:

5" rice bowl $18

6.75" rice bowl $24

12.5" round platter $58

18.5" oval platter, depends on complexity ~$84

 

3) Demand up or down:

Up for table serving ware. I don't produce place settings, so hard to tell for dinner sets.

 

4) Pull through for other pieces:

Yes, usually if the purchaser is buying for themselves.

 

5) For themselves or gifts:

Almost a third have told me the items were to be gifts.

 

6) Marketing:

Serving platters do well in wedding registries.

 

 

I would love to hear more about how you work with wedding registries? It seems to me that this is a great outlet of ceramics, especially dinnerware and assoicated pieces.

Thanks

 

 

Etsy has wedding registries available on their online site, any visitor can create a registry and add items from any shop. Their wedding category is directed which I take to mean juried/curated, but any item from any category can still be added to a registry.

 

 

 

Thanks

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Here (below) are the old CLAYART postings I wrote that Red Rocks is mentioning above. They are from June 2001. I have copied only the written material that I wrote and hence own... since I do not "own" the rights to the other poster's comments in that thread nor which I quoted in my posting. I was responding to comments on the list that someone else made in the first one about the tendency of plates to always warp on plate setters. In the second posting I was clarifying my comments in the first posting and elaborating on them. If you need the full context, please hit the link above to the CLAYART Archives (that link will soon go bad when the CLAYART archives get moved to a new server).

 

First posting about "plate setters":

 

Anne,

 

Hi. I've been using plate setters for about 23 years and have NO problems

with excessive warping. I woodfire stoneware to cone 10-ish and utilize

numerous claybodies. Without plate setters I'd be firing too many

refractories and not enough plates in a load. Plate setters allow nice

loading densities with flat forms.

 

Nothing inherent in good plate setters that will cause warping......

otherwise industry wouldn't have developed them . If the setter is

warped...... that is another story.....just like a warped kiln shelf.

 

Every now and then I chuck a worn out setter. BTW.... a "plate setter" can

simply be a smaller kiln shelf with three short posts set ont top of a

larger kiln shelf in a stack. I use a bunch of 12 inch x 12 inch x 3/8

inch shelves and 2 inch posts to set my rectangular sushi plates on in tall

bungs.

 

Plate warping, in my experience, seems to stem from throwing or

handbuilding techniques, HANDLING of the pieces in process, drying

unevenness, or warped kiln shelves. Pyroplasticity (getting soft in the

kiln) CAN cause problems ........ but plate setters should support the foot

area enough so that this is not an issue.

 

Design of a piece CAN affect warping, and design concepts should always

extend to designing for the firing of the pieces. A very pyroplastic body

used to make a plate that is suspended on isolated projecting feet can

easily sag between the feet. This will warp on either a shelf OR a plate

setter.

 

This is also why things like "bone china" (exceptionally pyroplastic) are

high fired to develop the fluxed body in setters that are more like slump

molds without glaze, and then glaze fired at a lower temp.

 

Lee Love's and Ron Roy's comments on this were excellent.

 

Best,

 

..............john

 

Second posting:

 

Hi All.

 

Got a private email offlist that indicated that I was a little less than

clear with my last post on plate setters. So here is a copy of what I HOPE

is a clarification I have sent to that person....... bet I confused others here too. Sorry about that .

 

<Editing out the quotes I included in the original here>

Typically, a handcraft potter just utilizes a "normal" kiln shelf to set

plates on. This might be a 12 x 24 x 3/4 silicon carbide shelf with maybe

three 2" x 2" x 2" posts to support it. This shelf might only hold two 10"

dinner plates plus a couple of small low "fillers". The thermal mass of

this shelf / post combination is about 20 pounds of what will take totally

wasted heat energy to fire up. The same two plates can be placed on

individual plate setters that weigh only about 5 pounds (or less) each.

 

That is about a HUGE 50 percent savings in the heat energy utilized to fire

the SHELVES and POSTS ....not the ware. If you can "cram" three plates on

the normal shelf using a lot of overhang.... watch warping .........

this STILL represents at least a 25 percent savings in heat energy.

 

That is the main reason why someone would use plate setters.

 

This is also why modern (expensive) shelves like the Crystar and Advancer

are so nice. They are thinner and hence weigh much less than "traditional"

shelves for the same "span", yet are actually stronger than a "traditional"

shelf. Yes... they save a little space to stack more stuff in........

maybe 1/2" of height per shelf used......... but that is incidental to the

heat energy savings.

 

The big reason to use these if you can is the save your BACK.......... they

are SO thin and light!!!!! A true JOY!

 

Plate setters ALSO minimize your handling of so many larger kiln

shelves.... and therefore help your back too.

 

Next......... all of the thermal mass of large "normal" kiln shelves

stacked close together with layer after layer of plates causes a "lag" in

the penetration of the heat energy to the interior of all those shelves.

 

Cordierite and high alumina shelves are worse in this regard than silicon

carbide due to differences in thermal conductivity figures..... but all

shelves exhibit this tendency. If this isn't taken into account in the

firing schedule, it is possible to have defects and seconds caused by the

fact that the center of the stacking is not at what the witness cones SAY

the reat of the general kiln chamber is at. So not only do you have to

heat all those heavy refractories, you often have to lengthen the

firing...... which utilizes even MORE heat energy.

 

You can "open up" the height of the stacking on the "normal" shelves to

improve heat transfer by giving the plates a lot more clearance ...... but

that defeats the efficiency purpose even more.

 

A plate setter exposes the plate all along it's outer periphery to the

radiant heat energy bouncing around the kiln, so it fosters excellent

transfer to the center of each individual plate..... even though the

vertical clearance from one setter to the next is pretty darn

tight.....which saves space in the kiln. Plus...the setter each plate's

foot is sitting on is very thin and lightweight and doesn't take much heat

energy to "heat up". So there is less "thermal lag" in the stack of plates

on setters.

 

A plate setter can "get away" with being thin because it spans only a very

short horizontal distance and carries very little weight on that span.

 

They don't sag much because of this and remain flat for a LONG time. The

vertical "legs" line up directly one over the other and in compression can

support a lot of weight.... so they can easily be stacked in tall columns,

usually called "bungs" (after "bungs" of saggers.....haven't got a clue as

to the exact historical derrivation of THAT term ). Sometimes I will

fire "bungs" of plates on setters that are 3 feet tall. These tall stacks

go on the top of the general stacking, along with the other tallest pieces.

 

Hope this clarifies my last post.

 

BEst,

 

.......................john

 

 

Hi John

 

I went back and read thru your psot again..there is alot of really good data here and I have forwarded it on to several potters here in Sedona who are interested in plate setters. One question - you talked about corderite and high alumina shelves being more difficult from a firing standpoint - do you have any experience with "Corelite" shelves and do they exhibit the same tendencies?

 

Thanks

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One question - you talked about corderite and high alumina shelves being more difficult from a firing standpoint - do you have any experience with "Corelite" shelves and do they exhibit the same tendencies?

 

Red Rocks,

 

It would depend on what exactly the corelite shelves structure is made of. If it is simply a high alumina product, thjen the thermal conductivity of the physical material would be the same as a solid shelf of the same material.

 

The difference is that the corelite shelf is hollow. So there is less thermal mass there to heat up than with a solid shelf of the same thickness.

 

However, relative to questions of heat penertation, there is also the question of how the heat transfer works across the hollow space in the shelf. If heat energy needs to move through that shelf in order to get to the location of the ware (not saying it will always have to do that by any means) then when the one side of the shelf structure is hotter than the other side, the energy has to move from the physical mass of one side to the other. How effective this would be across that air space is based upon the effectiveness of the surfaces bounding the air cells at emitting and absorbuing heat energy. I have no idea.

 

I have no actual experience with those shelves yet at all.

 

I have to remember to take a picture of my very well used plate setters and get it on here. Soon.... I promise... soon ;) .

 

 

best,

 

.......................john

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One question - you talked about corderite and high alumina shelves being more difficult from a firing standpoint - do you have any experience with "Corelite" shelves and do they exhibit the same tendencies?

 

Red Rocks,

 

It would depend on what exactly the corelite shelves structure is made of. If it is simply a high alumina product, thjen the thermal conductivity of the physical material would be the same as a solid shelf of the same material.

 

The difference is that the corelite shelf is hollow. So there is less thermal mass there to heat up than with a solid shelf of the same thickness.

 

However, relative to questions of heat penertation, there is also the question of how the heat transfer works across the hollow space in the shelf. If heat energy needs to move through that shelf in order to get to the location of the ware (not saying it will always have to do that by any means) then when the one side of the shelf structure is hotter than the other side, the energy has to move from the physical mass of one side to the other. How effective this would be across that air space is based upon the effectiveness of the surfaces bounding the air cells at emitting and absorbuing heat energy. I have no idea.

 

I have no actual experience with those shelves yet at all.

 

I have to remember to take a picture of my very well used plate setters and get it on here. Soon.... I promise... soon wink.gif .

 

 

best,

 

.......................john

 

 

Great idea on the pictures would love to see them. I have heard good things about the corelite shelves from a number of people. Thanks for your update on how you believe they will heat.

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I lifted a 12x25 5/8 thick hollow coralite shelve last week at ceramic supply house. It weighed close to what my advancers weigh (9#s for 12x24) It felt just a tad heavier . I have heard these do not warp much. My biggest issue with them is they take up space and will sponge up glaze runs as does all mullite material. These must be washed well always. Once one goes to advancers all other shelves are done. Mark

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Once one goes to advancers all other shelves are done.

 

Oh so very true... however one does have to deal with the initial "sticker shock".

 

Everyone should own at least one Advancer....... so that they know what they are missing with the rest of their shelves :lol: .

 

No matter how you slice it... they are not inexpensive. I still do not have enough of them to totally fill the noborigama with them yet. So the lower tier shelves in all chambers are mainly thin nitride bonded 5/8" silicon carbide. And the floor shelves are ANCIENT 3/4" and 1" traditional silicon carbide that I've had in use for about 35 years now (great payback on the investment there!).

 

best,

 

..........................john

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I looked at the Bailey ones. I think I will go with the c 10 ones then I should be able to use them at both mid and hi range firings. thanks

 

 

 

Hello Willow Tree - did you ever get the plate setters? Can you pls share the results when you have them?

 

Many thanks

 

 

 

Willow Tree - how did the plate setters go?

 

I visited a potter down in Phoenix over the week end who has been using the Bailey plate setters for 5 years or so and swears by them. I was able to be there as they opened the kiln and see the plates come out of the kiln from the setters. Great concept which I definitely plan on implementing in my new studio.

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Dinnerware is a small part of my overall production.Dinner Plate 11" $40, Salad Plate 8-9" $25-$30 and cereal bowl $20, Pasta Bowl $30

 

I think dinnerware is hard for small potters with rather limited space. I get bottlenecked when I have a big dinnerware order as I have a small studio. They also create a TON of trimmings and recycle time that some other work doesn't entail.

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