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Need Help Finding Cone 6 Porcelain And White Stoneware

porcelain stoneware cone 6 glaze handbuilding

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#1 sorris



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Posted 22 October 2013 - 12:50 AM

I am just getting back into clay after a long hiatus due to lack of studio space and other responsibilities. In the past I have usually known other potters where I could get some leads on good clays and glazes and check out some samples. I don't know any potters where I live and have had to rely on manufacturers write ups and test tiles at a supplier. At the clay store everyone says "you'll have to test it". Well, that's for sure but without a glaze studio I have accumulated some clays and glazes that are not working the way I hoped. I am hoping I can shorten the learning curve with some advice from those who have used Western clays.


I do smaller scale hand-building: a good cone 5/6 porcelain and a white stoneware with a bit more strength (really fine sand or grog only) would both be desirable (no wheel work). So far I have had a lot of glaze fitting issues with the bodies I have tried (some success with clear glaze on porcelain, but success with a celadon type glaze is on my wish list)  My location is Arizona so I would probably be looking at California manufacturers. I am considering a couple of Aardvark clays for my next clay trials (Nara 5 and BeeMix with sand), any comments on those?  I do both slab construction and pinching and like a smooth body. I prefer white bodies so that I lessen the chances of contaminating porcelain with another color and I also plan to use body stains in porcelain. Firing is electric oxidation.


Just to eliminate a few questions: I have already tried to fine tune bisque firing and I don't think it is the problem. I have called the clay manufacturer and spoke to a tech guy there, and I also talked to a guy in the back at the clay store. In the end I got honest comments about both clays I have been using that lead me to think they are less than ideal for my purposes and one is particularly difficult to get a good glaze fit under any circumstances. So I am back to looking at trying other clay bodies and hope that I can stick with one manufacturer to help with shipping. With any luck I might even find that some of the glazes I have already purchased might fit better on another clay. It isn't practical for me to start up a glaze studio right now so I would probably do best to find commercial glazes but would use glazemixer.com for a proven winner.


I would be grateful for any suggestions since my time is limited and I want to reduce stress in my life by having more fun with clay and enjoying the end result. As you might imagine, this is my first post. :)

#2 spadefootclay



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Posted 22 October 2013 - 07:26 AM

You might look at New Mexico Clay: http://www.nmclay.com/


I used both their Columbine (porcelain) and White Stoneware clays;  Brant (owner) has always been helpful.



#3 Marcia Selsor

Marcia Selsor

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Posted 22 October 2013 - 07:29 AM

First question I have is where are you located? NW, CA, NV, AZ, WA, OR?
There are a lot of distributors along the coast. I used Seattle pottery for some clays. I am not familiar with many commercial clays as I mixed my own for decades. I have used commercial porcelain.
There are several in Sea-tac area. Seattle Pottery , The Clay Center and Georgies are big suppliers in that area.
As suggested above. Call the supplier close to you and talk to them.

Marcia Selsor, Professor Emerita,
Montana State University-Billings

Marcia Selsor Studio in Brownsville, Texas.


#4 sorris



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Posted 22 October 2013 - 12:52 PM

Thanks for your reply. I am in Arizona.

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