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My First Bisque Firing ... Success!


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#1 Pugaboo

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Posted 11 July 2013 - 04:56 PM

I'm sorry to go on about this but I just opened my kiln for the first time with a set of bisque ware inside. It ALL fired beautifully! OMG you are all so right it felt like Christmas morning when I was a kid! I had to wait alllllll day for it to drop to 150 degrees so I could open it and it felt like it took a week not just 12 hours to cool off.

Nothing exploded YAY nothing cracked YAY nothing fell over YAY the cones all bent the same YAY. So basically YAY!!!

That little kiln held a lot too, see the attached photo. All of that fit in the 18x23 inch kiln. My shelves are 15 inch hexagons and I used 3 levels of shelves.

Now I need to get busy and finish up a few last pieces and I'll have another load ready to bisque, maybe by Saturday. After that it'll be on to the first dreaded Glaze Firing. Glazes and I are not on the best of terms so kind of dreading the glaze firing. Any pointers for a successful glaze firing? Should I use the slow or fast glaze setting on my controller?

Terry

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#2 Pres

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Posted 11 July 2013 - 05:05 PM

Nice job, lots of pieces to glaze. As far as your glaze fire setting, unless you have glazes with textural effects, or do a lot of layering, I would go with the fast fire. 

 

One thing to make certain of is that your pieces have dried before running up that fast firing. Some time you get some really goofy crawling, and shivering if your pieces are not dry. Remember that the clay has absorbed quite a bit of water and when that turns to steam in a fast firing it can flake of some of the glaze.


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#3 Pugaboo

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Posted 11 July 2013 - 05:19 PM

Thanks Pres. I will have a lot of underglaze painted pieces glazed with a clear glaze. Some pieces like the boxes that will have glaze inside and outside. A few small bowls with the same. A large coil vase with RIO under a Coyote Crawl glaze. A bit of a hodge Podge I guess since I haven't settled on doing anyone one type of pottery yet and am experimenting with different forms and methods. I also have a Crazed Copper glaze I am thinking of using.

I am leaning towards a Slow Glaze with the variety of stuff I am firing. I'm also keeping in mind that when I did the first test firing to 06 using the Fast Glaze the cones were all vastly different in their bends. Will doing a Slow Glaze equalize the temperature in the kiln better than the Fast Glaze at a hotter cone like 6? Is there any reason NOT to use Slow Glaze?

Terry
The world is but a canvas to the imagination - Henry David Thoreau

#4 Chris Campbell

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Posted 11 July 2013 - 05:42 PM

Silly question ... Doesn't your computer have a medium setting? That is the one I use the most when I can't decide.

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#5 Nancy S.

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Posted 11 July 2013 - 09:55 PM

Woohoo! Congrats! Everything looks great. :D



#6 Pugaboo

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Posted 11 July 2013 - 10:02 PM

Chris, I have a Bartlett V6-CF controller and my choices are Slow Bisque, Fast Bisque, Slow Glaze, Fast Glaze plus something called Vary Control settings which I have to program myself and considering I can't figure out which preprogrammed setting to use dont think I'm ready for that. Lol

The book says to consider the different settings like this; slow bisque as SLOW, fast bisque as SLOW MEDIUM, slow glaze as MEDIUM, and fast glaze as FAST... hey I think I just answered my own question! I'll try the SLOW GLAZE (medium) setting and see how it goes. It was kind of confusing in the book since it also said a fast glaze could be used to fire bisque. Like huh? Why not just name them Slow, Medium, Slow - Medium and Fast? I think they just make it confusing to newbies on purpose.

Slightly less confused than before,
Terry
But don't worry I'm sure I'll have more dumb newbie questions to ask tomorrow LOL.
The world is but a canvas to the imagination - Henry David Thoreau

#7 Benzine

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Posted 12 July 2013 - 08:35 AM

I use the "Fast Glaze" setting pretty frequently on my classroom L&L, and have never had a bad batch yet.

 

I do recall, that someone mentioned, doing a slower glaze firing, when you reported the cone results of your first firing.  But I believe someone else mentioned, that actually having wares in the kiln would help, with those variations. 

 

I really don't see what a slow firing schedule will hurt, with the type of glazing you are doing.  I honestly think, you'd be fine with a fast firing as well, but better safe than sorry, especially when the difference between a fast and slow glaze firing on my school's L&L is only an hour or two.


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#8 Pres

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Posted 12 July 2013 - 12:26 PM

I have an L&L fully programmable on my Christmas list for about 2020. I figure by then I will be fed up with the late nights nursing a kiln to temp like last night-2:15 am. Full glaze load now cooling. Without even a kiln setter it does take watching. Yes, I have fallen asleep. :angry:


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#9 Min

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Posted 12 July 2013 - 09:27 PM

Slightly less confused than before,
Terry
But don't worry I'm sure I'll have more dumb newbie questions to ask tomorrow LOL.

 

I think it is terrific you are asking so many questions! There are a lot of people on this site who are very generous with their knowledge and experience. No such thing as a "dumb newbie question". I envy your ability to make Christmas ornaments in the summer, wish I was that organized!   Min



#10 Pugaboo

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Posted 12 July 2013 - 09:55 PM

Min - thank you and yes I ask LOTS of silly questions because sometimes its the only way to find out anything. I'm a baby potter only 7 months old and as oldlady can tell you I read LOADS of books and sometimes they contradict each other, heck most of the time they do. Asking the experienced potters here is so immensely helpful and yes you are right they are extremely generous in sharing their knowledge. This forum has helped me improve by leaps and bounds compared to trying to figure it all out on my own. Thank you all!!!

As for the ornaments I have 3 shows lined up for the fall so I really need to practice the stuff I want to make for them now so I am ready for then. No big shows or Official art festivals 1 is a group show with all the potters from the group studio, another is a 1 day festival again with several of the potters going in together in a booth. These 2 will be great for me to kind of stick my toe in the water with pottery so to speak. I did real art festivals for years, not with pottery, but don't really want to get into that formal of a cycle again since its a ton of work and too much time away from home. The 3rd event is actually over 2 weekends and focuses on holiday themed items so it will be my biggest event of the year. Hence the ornaments, I am also making other types of non pottery ornaments as well. One thing all of these have in common is they are local so I can spend the night in my own bed.

So I'm off to read the book on Extruding I just got... Stay tuned for questions on THAT!

Terry
The world is but a canvas to the imagination - Henry David Thoreau

#11 Claypple

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Posted 13 July 2013 - 08:48 AM

 Doesn't your computer have a medium setting? That is the one I use the most when I can't decide.

Chris, what kiln do you use?

Also: I thought the choice of "slow" "fast" depends on what glaze you are applying.






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