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Chris Campbell

What Is The Most Incorrect "rule" You Ever Heard For Pottery?

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6 years ago I was given a small programmable kiln. I was reassured that since it was computer controlled it didn't need to be watched.....you guessed it. One fried mother board, one garage fire later; and $139,000 poorer, I learned that that was not a good rule

 

 

Sorry to hear about that! My kiln shed caught on fire once, but I saved it and even if I hadn't it would have only cost about $1,000 to replace it. The problem was that the plug on the small kiln had worked lose and caused and arc. I've never heard of a kiln actually causing a fire because the kiln would just burn out before doing something to cause a fire (unless the potter did something really stupid like placing the kiln too close to something flamable). Was your fire caused by the wiring?

 

Jim

Mother board burned out, drew too much power so the wiring arced. The bad thing was that the wiring was behind a cabinet filled with reloading supplies....Yup, gun powder. I now have a dedicated kiln shed with seperate sub panel. The walls are cinder block and thewiring comes up through the cement floor.

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A funny story about the fire. I had some kicking bags hung in garage for Tae Kwon Do practice. They of course thebags partially burned and that is where the fun story starts. The center of the bags were full of a white substance wrapped into brick shapes wrapped in plastic tape. The fire inspector came back about one hour after the fire to start the investigation. He found these "bricks" with white stuff in them in a pile below what used to be the kicking bag. Yup, the drug unit from the local police was called to identify this white stuff. It ended up being white sand wrapped it plastic bags all taped up. I still remember watching one of the officers cutting open one of the 8 bags and tasting a tiny amount of the white stuff. It ended up being white sand...the filler of the kicking bag. I'm not making any of this up.....REALLY!

 

Jed

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Holy cow! You kept the gun powder closer to the kiln?! Actually, don't you think it was a good thing that you were not watching your kiln?    :D

The cabinet was about 6 feet from the kiln, but the wiring coursed past behind the cabinet and that is where the wiring failed.

 

As I read this post, I still have a hard time wrapping my brain around it all.

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I fire closed balls and garden rocks without air holes poked in them and haven't lost any. I think that rule depends totally on your clay body and firing temp.

I use a Giffen Grip whenever I feel like it and lightning has not struck me .....yet.

I do use a splash pan as I would look like a clay sculpture myself if I did not ... I am one messy thrower! I can get clay splashes on the back of my head.

I don't dare allow my students, or even myself to fire sealed forms.  I don't believe the results would be anything other than horrific, especially due to the sometimes abbreviated drying/ firing schedule.

 

You will be safe using Giffin Grips until Jim acquires his God-Like powers.

"How did I get clay there" is one of those magical mysteries right up there with, "How can a speck of glitter teleport across the room, from a sealed container?"  The latter is one of the reasons I don't allow gliter in my classroom. 

 

Holy cow! You kept the gun powder closer to the kiln?! Actually, don't you think it was a good thing that you were not watching your kiln?    :D

I'm paranoid about any small scraps of paper/ power towel sitting within feet of the kiln.

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Pugaboo ... My goodness, you are working hard! You make my case for the fact that reclaimed clay is the most expensive clay you will ever use. Your attention to detail might make you a good candidate to join us colored clay crazies though! : - )

 

Air bubbles have never been a big issue for me ... I have had sculpture explode but it was no mystery since they were incredibly uneven in thickness and the explosion was almost expected.

I fire closed balls and garden rocks without air holes poked in them and haven't lost any. I think that rule depends totally on your clay body and firing temp.

I use a Giffen Grip whenever I feel like it and lightning has not struck me .....yet.

I do use a splash pan as I would look like a clay sculpture myself if I did not ... I am one messy thrower! I can get clay splashes on the back of my head.

 

 

If you like the Griffen Grip you'll probably love the Brent Quick Centering Tool

. The video is funny. I love the way the guy talks and the fact that the clay he throws is not centered (which is a good thing but not what they're trying to do). At least the comments are good.

 

Jim

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Jim - I didn't watch the whole thing.  Maybe it's my headache, but it was alternately hysterical and painful. I wonder if they actually sell those things?  And my problem isn't a 2 pound plug, it's those +25# pieces!

 

Alice.

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Pugaboo ... My goodness, you are working hard! You make my case for the fact that reclaimed clay is the most expensive clay you will ever use. Your attention to detail might make you a good candidate to join us colored clay crazies though! : - )

 

Air bubbles have never been a big issue for me ... I have had sculpture explode but it was no mystery since they were incredibly uneven in thickness and the explosion was almost expected.

I fire closed balls and garden rocks without air holes poked in them and haven't lost any. I think that rule depends totally on your clay body and firing temp.

I use a Giffen Grip whenever I feel like it and lightning has not struck me .....yet.

I do use a splash pan as I would look like a clay sculpture myself if I did not ... I am one messy thrower! I can get clay splashes on the back of my head.

 

 

If you like the Griffen Grip you'll probably love the Brent Quick Centering Tool

. The video is funny. I love the way the guy talks and the fact that the clay he throws is not centered (which is a good thing but not what they're trying to do). At least the comments are good.

 

Jim

 

I didn't finish the video, but it was fairly amusing.  I think the clay wasn't centered, because the adapter that fit on the wheel, didn't look centered. 

I need to go back and read the comments.

I won't go so far as to bash this, and call it worthless, but outside an elementary classroom, it's unnecessary.

 

Jim - I didn't watch the whole thing.  Maybe it's my headache, but it was alternately hysterical and painful. I wonder if they actually sell those things?  And my problem isn't a 2 pound plug, it's those +25# pieces!

 

Alice.

Yeah, but on the plus side, you can count those twenty five pound centering sessions as both cardio and resistance training.

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THat video wore me out. Beside $200, beside not being centered, Amaco has such contempt for pottery as to put that on the market.

 

BTW there are some great tools I use, an electric wheel. I tried a treadle wheel and almost killed myself. Some old time Georgia potters got a kick out of seeing me beat myself up with a treadle wheel once.

 

A deairing pugmill, unlike Robin Hopper, I don't like being a wedging apprentice for a summer.

 

A centering arm, being near on to 67 and having to make a living at this game, I'll use anything that keeps the arthritus away.

 

Don't have one but saw a ball opener once and an 87 year old potter open and pull 10-25lb water cooler bases in a half hour.

(Marshall Pottery in Texas 1990)

 

His words were, "If you're going to make a living as a potter, get the best tools and learn how to use them"

 

Comment of the day, customer comments,"It nice to have a hobby like this, how do you make a living", while standing in my gallery with 300 pots around her.

 

 Biggest myth,"Make pots and people will find you", you better do more to let them know where to find you. :)

 

You can;t make some of this stuff up.

:) Wyndham:)

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I don't need that tool as I only buy pre-centered clay.

I've got you beat Chris.  The clay I buy is pre-centered, pre-thrown, pre-trimmed, pre-bisqued and pre-glazed.  It really does take quite a bit of the work, out of the process.

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hey, guys, i am the person who introduced the bailey quick trim at the nceca conference in tampa!!!  that was me showing the tool for the first time to the world.  it was such fun that i did not even get to see anything else at the conference.   i spent years in marketing and had a marvelous time bringing all that out at nceca.

 

mr giffin had a fit!  

 

i think i will have to see that video, bailey filmed me with a cell phone.  by now, it ought to be professionally done.

 

OMG!!  I DID NOT READ YOUR POST CORRECTLY, JIM !   HOW AWFUL!  COULD NOT WATCH MORE THAN THE BEGINNING!

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The most ridiculous one I heard from another potter is that using metal wisks for mixing glazes ruins it by leaving microscopic pieces of metal behind'  she always used wood spoons.     Denice

This woman would die of shock if she saw what we use for breaking up settled glazes! An emersion blender!

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So, getting back to the topic "What Is The Most Incorrect "rule" You Ever Heard For Pottery?" I recall someone telling me: "You have to stuff the kiln as tight as you can when glaze firing"

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In fairness to the 'wire wisk denyer', I used to have a bunch of wisks that rusted so badly that if you ever used them in a white glaze, it wouldn't really be white anymore.....  So depending on the actual equipment and glazes, there could be a valid point there, buried deeply.....  I think my imersion blender has a stainless blade.

 

Alice

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Off topic but since Pugaboo is having problems wedging I thought she might get a kick out of a neat way to clean the inside side of her computer screen: http://songdrops.com/pug-licking-screen-clean/

 

Jim

This video is hilarious! If we had the "like" button showing you the number of times somebody liked it (like we had before), you would get 20+.

 

Talking of which; Moderator, we also need the buttons like: "I didn't like it at all", "What are you talking about?!" , "Wow, that is really crazy", and "I cannot believe I am reading it!".

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A centering arm, being near on to 67 and having to make a living at this game, I'll use anything that keeps the arthritus away.

 

Don't have one but saw a ball opener once and an 87 year old potter open and pull 10-25lb water cooler bases in a half hour.

(Marshall Pottery in Texas 1990)

 

 

i understand that all that stuff you see in gift shops made by campbell is made with a jigger and jolley and the fingermarks are applied to the finished piece.

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Off topic but since Pugaboo is having problems wedging I thought she might get a kick out of a neat way to clean the inside side of her computer screen: http://songdrops.com/pug-licking-screen-clean/

 

Jim

This video is hilarious! If we had the "like" button showing you the number of times somebody liked it (like we had before), you would get 20+.

 

Talking of which; Moderator, we also need the buttons like: "I didn't like it at all", "What are you talking about?!" , "Wow, that is really crazy", and "I cannot believe I am reading it!".

 

I don't know about that.  When we used to have the negative buttons, people would use them, seemingly out of spite.  I'm still not sure how Jim has recovered, from the reputation assault he received a couple months ago.  To be fair, it was his fault.  He should have known better than to give an honest opinion.

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Off topic but since Pugaboo is having problems wedging I thought she might get a kick out of a neat way to clean the inside side of her computer screen: http://songdrops.com/pug-licking-screen-clean/

 

Jim

Too funny. Mine actually are very helpful and try to clean my iPad from the outside of course. I am so used to it I don't even notice the smudges any more but there's been a few times I've taken it out to show someone my portfolio and realized OMP ( oh my pug) my screen is a mess. I just smile and say my Pug models are very paws on or maybe I should say tongues on. Lol thanks Jim for the smile!

 

Terry

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 When we used to have the negative buttons, people would use them, seemingly out of spite.  I'm still not sure how Jim has recovered, from the reputation assault he received a couple months ago.  To be fair, it was his fault.  He should have known better than to give an honest opinion.

 

 

 

I got bombarded once, got lots of (-), so I responded by posting this photo: post-19169-0-32124100-1374193604_thumb.jpg

 

What I got in response just killed me and I gave up. 

I was asked: "What is he holding?"  and "What does it mean?"

post-19169-0-32124100-1374193604_thumb.jpg

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It will fire out!    Yea if it is ^03 clay in ^10 firing!         If they where air bubbles, one would see 1/2 the pocket on inside of piece.

Its not real "Raku" unless it breaks.

Warped pots can be re-fired upside down to fix.

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All those clay beauty secrets and face masks. I have been working with clay for a few years and yet to see any improvements in my looks. My hands are also very dry.

 

I also got told about the air bubbles, I have fired many air bubbles into my work with no problems.

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If it comes to down to bad advice, You Tube has it's share.

I some times think you should have to pre-qualify to make an instructional video.

 

I try to keep an open mind, occasionaly you can find a good unique suggestion from the unenlightened.

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If it comes to down to bad advice, You Tube has it's share.

I some times think you should have to pre-qualify to make an instructional video.

 

I try to keep an open mind, occasionaly you can find a good unique suggestion from the unenlightened.

 

The net is filled with dubious content in just about every venue.  The important art is vetting your sources.

 

best,

 

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

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