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Isculpt

Materials to press into clay for random texture

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probably only worry if the percentage of additive outweighs the original clay body throughout the whole load being fired.  can't picture that happening.

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So, should I worry or not?

 

No. Saggers in elect kilns do almost nothing to prevent the heavy carbon smoke from getting on the elements, so sagger firing would be more damaging to the elements than any material added to clay because, most likely, you're burning a lot more material in a sagger or saggers than the stuff you stick into clay. But, with that said, I don't think even firing two or three saggers with a couple of pounds of sawdust or coffee grounds in them is very harmful to the elements. I've been doing it for years.

 

Jim

Claypple likes this

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Jim,

I didn't mean fire a saggar firing in the electric kiln, I meant put the clay with ingredients into a saggar if she was worried about the burnoff. Sealed saggars even aluminum saggars DO contain carbon and protect the elements according to my friend Russel who has been doing it for 20 years and not changed his elements yet.However I wouldn't put ferric chloride in an electric kiln no matter what king of saggar it was in.

Marcia

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Jim,

I didn't mean fire a saggar firing in the electric kiln, I meant put the clay with ingredients into a saggar if she was worried about the burnoff. Sealed saggars even aluminum saggars DO contain carbon and protect the elements according to my friend Russel who has been doing it for 20 years and not changed his elements yet.However I wouldn't put ferric chloride in an electric kiln no matter what king of saggar it was in.

Marcia

 

I guess I missed your post and was just replying to Claypple. What you say above is interesting and, obviously, Russel should know what he's talking about, but I just can't imagine anything holding in all the gasses from organics without leaking or exploding. All that stuff as to go somewhere. I blew up a thick-walled sagger filled with dry coffee grounds and sawdust once when I made a tight-fitting lid to a sagger and sealed it with clay.

 

I don't think using a sagger for something with organics in it is worth the effort, even if you can make one that holds all the carbon in--which I still doubt. You probably get a lot more off-gassing from firing a bisque load of a clay like Lizella (lots of organics in it) than a clean clay with walnut shells stuck in it. And, as I said several times before, I've fired saggers that billow smoke (my kilns are outside) for years and they're still going strong. (Oh crap! I'll probably go check the kiln I'm firing today and find that two elements just burned out!)

 

Jim

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