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Aluminum Foil Sagger Firing


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#1 Gary Taylor

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Posted 07 June 2013 - 04:07 PM

Hello Fellow pot(ting) addicts.

This is my first posting and I hope I'm doing this correctly.


I am a reasonably new potter and would like to experiment with alternate firing techniques.
I belong to a local pottery co-op and therefore at the mercy of the glaze firing committee and the glazes approved by the committee. I do use some commercial glazes and I am currently exploring different cone 6 glazes and firing techniques and as such hoping to get some information and advice.

Our kilns are both electric. We bisque fire to cone 06 and glaze fire to cone 6. I've been hearing about aluminum foil firing and I've read about sagger firing. I understand sagger firing reduces oxidation and can effect the glaze in interesting ways. Is it possible to sagger in an electric kiln to cone 6? And also how does one fire with aluminum foil and will it work in an electric cone 6 firing?

Thank you all very much for your help. It is greatly appreciated.

Gary Taylor

#2 OffCenter

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Posted 07 June 2013 - 08:13 PM

Hello Fellow pot(ting) addicts.

This is my first posting and I hope I'm doing this correctly.


I am a reasonably new potter and would like to experiment with alternate firing techniques.
I belong to a local pottery co-op and therefore at the mercy of the glaze firing committee and the glazes approved by the committee. I do use some commercial glazes and I am currently exploring different cone 6 glazes and firing techniques and as such hoping to get some information and advice.

Our kilns are both electric. We bisque fire to cone 06 and glaze fire to cone 6. I've been hearing about aluminum foil firing and I've read about sagger firing. I understand sagger firing reduces oxidation and can effect the glaze in interesting ways. Is it possible to sagger in an electric kiln to cone 6? And also how does one fire with aluminum foil and will it work in an electric cone 6 firing?

Thank you all very much for your help. It is greatly appreciated.

Gary Taylor


Gary there are other threads about saggar firing in elec kilns that you can find by doing a search but here is one of the more recent ones: http://ceramicartsda...__fromsearch__1

You will probably have problems doing sagger firings in an elec kiln in your co-op situation.

Jim
E pur si muove.

"But it does move," said Galileo under his breath.

#3 Iforgot

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Posted 07 June 2013 - 09:58 PM

You can fire in saggars in an electric kiln, however aluminium foil will vaporize by cone 6, and the fumes are quite toxic. The only saggar firing i do in my electric kiln is to wrap my pots in 1 sheet of newspaper and two sheets of aluminium foil and fire to cone 021, this gives me a very uniform black that I cant get from sawdust firing.


Good luck!
Darrel
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#4 Marcia Selsor

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Posted 08 June 2013 - 01:56 AM

When using aluminum saggaars in an electric kiln, try not to get hotter than 500 C or 960 F. To prevent the foil from melting.
clay saggaars can be made. Metal cans like cookie tins go a bit hotter than the aluminum.

Marcia

#5 OffCenter

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Posted 08 June 2013 - 08:00 AM

If you sagger fire in an elect kiln, use saggers, not aluminum foil. You can get wonderful results at cone 6 sagger firing in elect kilns. I use coffee grounds.

Jim
E pur si muove.

"But it does move," said Galileo under his breath.

#6 RakuMan

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Posted 08 June 2013 - 10:27 AM

Yes, Aluminum dose melt just below 1,000 degrease. But I get much better effects at 1160. You are going to get different effects with different clays. Try & use the whitest clay you can. Laguna B mix is a good choice.
** It is Not only the temperature you fire to, it is your climbing rate, how long you hold, & how fast you cool.
There are many different chemicals to get many different colors & effects. Ferric Chloride is a good base, just be careful of the fumes when firing & opening the foil.
Attached File  051.jpg   31.07KB   38 downloads

#7 Gary Taylor

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Posted 08 June 2013 - 06:36 PM

Thank you everyone for your responses.

It would appear aluminum foil is out of the question for me unless I reserve the entire kiln to fire under 1000 degrees which I don't think the co-op would allow. But perhaps I can sagger fire one or two of my pieces to see what I get. The response from OffCentre (Jim) suggests using coffee ground in his sagger. This has opened up a number of questions. Do you generally add something to the inside of the sagger and do I glaze the piece first?

As you can see I'm a neophite when it comes to anything other than traditional firing. I'll do a search of topic on this forum to see what I can find.

In the meantime can anyone suggest a book that I can purchase that will explain sagger firing?

Thanks again everyone.

Gary Taylor

#8 Gary Taylor

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Posted 08 June 2013 - 06:39 PM

Thank you Raku Man. The post you attached is wonderful. The glaze has so much life to it which I hope to achieve on my functional pieces.

Gary Taylor

.

Yes, Aluminum dose melt just below 1,000 degrease. But I get much better effects at 1160. You are going to get different effects with different clays. Try & use the whitest clay you can. Laguna B mix is a good choice.
** It is Not only the temperature you fire to, it is your climbing rate, how long you hold, & how fast you cool.
There are many different chemicals to get many different colors & effects. Ferric Chloride is a good base, just be careful of the fumes when firing & opening the foil.
Attached File  051.jpg   31.07KB   38 downloads



#9 OffCenter

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Posted 08 June 2013 - 08:47 PM

Thank you everyone for your responses.

It would appear aluminum foil is out of the question for me unless I reserve the entire kiln to fire under 1000 degrees which I don't think the co-op would allow. But perhaps I can sagger fire one or two of my pieces to see what I get. The response from OffCentre (Jim) suggests using coffee ground in his sagger. This has opened up a number of questions. Do you generally add something to the inside of the sagger and do I glaze the piece first?

As you can see I'm a neophite when it comes to anything other than traditional firing. I'll do a search of topic on this forum to see what I can find.

In the meantime can anyone suggest a book that I can purchase that will explain sagger firing?

Thanks again everyone.

Gary Taylor


Gary, I explain how I do saggar firings in the thread I linked to above. Check that out and let me know if you have questions. Two things to consider: (1) sagger firing at cone 6 is more like traditional sagger firing and is not like any low-fire or raku firing. (2) doing sagger firings in a community kiln is probably not a good idea. If you do hang in there and do it, good luck and let us know how it comes out.

Jim
E pur si muove.

"But it does move," said Galileo under his breath.

#10 OffCenter

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Posted 09 June 2013 - 08:16 AM

Teabowl from recent cone 6 elect sagger firing: http://ceramicartsda...wimage&img=2660
E pur si muove.

"But it does move," said Galileo under his breath.

#11 Gary Taylor

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Posted 11 June 2013 - 01:31 AM

Jim

Thank you very much for the information. I appreciate it very much. Your links to other threads is very helpful.
I intend to continue doing research until to get a better understanding of the challenges and opportunities with saggar firing before I approach the glaze firing committee at the co-op. Your tea bowl is beautiful. I would do cartwheels if I was able to do that and being 61 and over weight would be quite a feat.

Gary Taylor




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