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Glaze Materials Storage Containers

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I am almost ready to start purchasing glaze materials to make my own glazes. First I would like to decide on the storage containers that I will transfer the dry ingredient bags to. Could you share with me what size containers to purchase for 50#, 10#, 5#, 1# of the dry materials. All of the container sizes seem to be in gallons. I will be purchasing a very good dust mask to do this job.

 

I want to wind up with a neat and orderly looking glaze area so I am thinking of squared containers. Do you have any favorite brands or dimensions? Thank you.

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In our studio, we tend to buy primarily 50 lb bags of materials, and use corresponding Tupperware containers, about the size of a laundry basket. For smaller material amounts like that of oxides and lesser used fluxes, we just downscale the size of the Tupperware container...

 

I'll have to take measurements tomorrow to get a better idea of the sizes, but you can ballpark it pretty well while in the store too...

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You need to remember that volume and weight are not identical for materials. You need a bigger container for 50 lbs of grolleg than you need for 50 lbs of frit. And better to have some extra room, so that when you replenish an item, you'll have room for what is left over plus the new amount.

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Yep. Plastic totes work great for 50# bags. I don't know the gallon size, but most of mine have a lid size of about 12" x 16", with a depth of about 12". Probably around 9-10 gallon cause my 18 gallon totes that I haul pots around in look to be about twice as big. I also keep shoebox size tubs of all my materials for mixing glaze tests, so I don't have to haul out the big tubs, or materials that I only buy in 5-10 pound batches like superpax and bone ash. I have small tupperware containers for things like cobalt that I only buy a couple pounds at a time. I also keep a large tote full surplus bags of small quantities that won't fit in the small containers.

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I have plastic bins/drawers on shelves for convenience. 50 pound bags are stored on pallets on the back porch with smaller quantities inside.Larger quantities are stored in 5 gallon buckets on homemade dollies and stored under work tables. Color ants are stored in metal cans from a few large cookie c tins to five lb plastic coffee cans or Illy cans.

Mason stains are stored in double zip loc bags.

Marcia

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There are no chemicals in the containers in that studio, the larger containers are near the ceiling and would be hard to get down when full.  Most of my containers I have gotten free or very little cost from fast food restaurants, gallon plastic pickle jars, one half gal containers and 5 gal buckets for the 50 lb bags. The only problem I have with them is my lids are starting to fall apart after 30 years of use, I guess I half to visit fast food and see what they have. Individually owned restaurants are more helpful that chains. You can buy containers made for commercial use but the cost start adding up fast, maybe they would last longer than 30 years.   Denice

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I'm old school and have a similar set up like Marcia and Denice 

If I had to decant every 50# bag into onother container I'd be wasting to much time for that.

So I use those materials straight from the bags-I go thru them fairly fast

Lesser materials are stored in 4 gallon metal tins-lesser materails are in a few large metal coffe tins and most colorants are in square 1 gallon plastic containers. I store many odds and ends in the bags they come in with an outer plastic bag.

For example I have cobalt carb in a gallon container as well as two other 10# bags of it put away.

Since I buy in bulk some of the lesser items are stashed and I only have a gallon or so in glaze area.

My suggestion is create your system what works best for you-for me 40 years ago I never thight about buying containers for raw materials

Now when I could why would I ?my system works for me.

If I had it to do over I would have bought actual galze bins as used in schools if I would have known I'd be mixing glazes every week or two-who knew.

Mark

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When I first set up my glaze storage I purchased plastic paint buckets in various sizes, with matching with lids, for materials as I was not purchasing in large amounts.  When I started going larger scale, I first got the promotional, thus lesser cost, 5-gallon buckets from home improvements stores, but found that the lids were difficult on and off, and would frequently break. I have since heard that the plastic has a lot of filler and will break down.

 

I now go to a restaurant supply store and purchase bain marie containers.  They come in a multitude of sizes, are relatively inexpensive, are made of higher quality plastic, are much sturdier, and the lids go on and off very well.  You can also see the material level through the side on many of them. 

 

A bonus in the restaurant supply store is tools you may repurpose for pottery are all over the place.

 

John

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For the 50 lb bags I use stackable fliptop storage containers from Ikea. For smaller amounts I use large and small coffee cans.

 

Are these the ones you use from Ikea that will hold a full bag? http://www.ikea.com/ca/en/catalog/products/10255897/

 

I'm short on floor space so these would be great if they are sturdy enough to not sag when full and stacked. 

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For the 50 lb bags I use stackable fliptop storage containers from Ikea. For smaller amounts I use large and small coffee cans.

 

Are these the ones you use from Ikea that will hold a full bag? http://www.ikea.com/ca/en/catalog/products/10255897/

 

I'm short on floor space so these would be great if they are sturdy enough to not sag when full and stacked. 

 

Hi Min, The size "37" is 10 gal and it says to not stack higher than 3. The larger size "60" is 16 gal and says not to stack higher than 2.

I think these look great for the large quantity materials. No need to see through because it is all white powder.

 

TinaS, So you say that the 10 gal size will fit the 50#bag or is it the taller 16 gal?

 

JLowes, thanks for the idea for the restaurant supply. I can think of a few things that would be much more cost efficient than from a pottery supply.

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I use everything from the bag.  Although I only purchase my Silca, Calcium Cab, and Feldpsars in 50# bags.  All others are 10lbs or less so they are already in easy to handle bags.  They are double thick paper bags.  It seems to work good for me so far.  I do not like to think about moving those materials around from container to container, seems like unneeded work.,

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For the 50 lb bags I use stackable fliptop storage containers from Ikea. For smaller amounts I use large and small coffee cans.

 

Are these the ones you use from Ikea that will hold a full bag? http://www.ikea.com/ca/en/catalog/products/10255897/

 

I'm short on floor space so these would be great if they are sturdy enough to not sag when full and stacked. 

 

Hi Min, The size "37" is 10 gal and it says to not stack higher than 3. The larger size "60" is 16 gal and says not to stack higher than 2.

I think these look great for the large quantity materials. No need to see through because it is all white powder.

 

TinaS, So you say that the 10 gal size will fit the 50#bag or is it the taller 16 gal?

 

JLowes, thanks for the idea for the restaurant supply. I can think of a few things that would be much more cost efficient than from a pottery supply.

 

I used the largest size and a full bag fit. I love it because I don't have to move stacks of buckets anymore. 

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My main concerns with material storage are space constraints, ease of access and moving things around. I just got a different IKEA container that seems to work well. Two fit on a furniture dolly from Harbor Freight, topped with a piece of plywood. In the pic there are three other wheeled containers that I found on Amazon. They're ok, but I think the IKEA ones have a smaller foot print and fit in closer together. The dolly goes under the table on its short side; I can get 2 in the space of one of the others.  I don't transfer bags to the container, either, because of time and dust concerns. Instead, a large garbage bag goes in the bin first, then the bag of material, which I cut open after it is the bin. I used to use the stackable containers and found that they do sag and it's difficult to get full bags in. Everything has to be unstacked to load a new bag. Smaller amounts are in stackable containers on another wheeled shelving unit. 

 

The bin labels are placed in those plastic sleeves for packing lists. I don't fully attached the sleeve; one end is left open so I can change the label if needed. Same labeling system on my glaze buckets. I also put a card in the bins. Too many labels have fallen off, gotten wet, rubbed off, etc. over the years. 

 

I made the wheeled glaze table that the bins are under.  There is a 6" deep shelf level with the table to hold frequently used items. Keeps them off the general work surface and I can move the table easily for cleaning and glazing. 

 

It only took 20+ years to figure out. But then I'm a fast learner....

 

Ruth

 

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post-13960-0-80572800-1394723427_thumb.jpg

AnnaM likes this

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Thanks for the ideas, Ruth. I did a check of the Amazon IRIS pet food holders and there seemed to be a lot of comments about breaking casters. In your picture the IRIS wheels are much smaller than the Harbor Freight option. That looks a lot sturdier. Will check out those IKEA bins.

 

The shelf above the glaze table is a terrific idea. I think I will do something like that. I am glad to learn the trick of putting a card in the bin also. That could save a serious headache.

 

Darthe

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So far the storage containers that I have used before varied from large plastic ones to those stainless steel ones. It really depends on what you really need in terms of size and volume. The main feature that you have to take into consideration is the durability of the containers and whether or not they are waterproof. Without those characteristics then the contents might just be ruined way before their shelf life.

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writing directly on the bucket with a permanent marker, sharpie, saves losing a paper label.  to change the name on the bucket, spray cheap hairspray on the letters and wipe with a cotton ball, or two for long names.  

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If you take material out of the maked bag they came in by all means use a sharpie or waterproof marker to write on the container.

I have seen tons of folks tubs with no idea whats inside as the label fell off long ago-taped or not.

I have found the orginal bag in most cases is the best container as it says whats inside.

Mark

 

one last tip if you insist on containers with labels-put a label on the inside so its always in there after the outer one is long gone-I have often put a paper lablel inside an unmarked bag while i was marking the outside of bag-then no matter what I know what the bag has in it.

CarlCravens, Babs and Chilly like this

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If you take material out of the maked bag they cam in by all means use a sharpie or waterproof marker to write on the container.

I have seen tons of folks tubs with no idea whats inside as the label fell off long ago-taped or not.

I have found the orginal bag in most cases is the best container as it says whats inside.

Mark

 

one last tip if you insist on containers with labels-put a label on the inside so its always in there after the outer one is long gone-I have often put a paper lablel inside an unmarked bag while i was marking the outside of bag-then no matter what I know what the bag has in it.

I thought you just wrote the name on the door of each barn. ;)

Annabelle likes this

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I'm the age that I have had to go thru more than one potters stuff and labeling is the weak point always for most (I'm not imune either).

I acually do not own a barn but I just put my big boat in one if that counts?

I do have a commpressor building (for dive tanks) and a few out buildings not associated wih pottery things-camping diving ocean stuff

you get it.One for garndening -riding mover-tools etc.

The clay industrial area is all together except for salt kiln in side yard.

If you ever stop by you can help move some heavy stuff.

Mark

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