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Brian Stein

Glazing Flutes

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Anyone have any idea how I can glaze fire my ceramic flutes? I tried throwing a plate and putting 1/2" coils sticking upright thinking I could stand them on end, fail. They are too weak at the join. I only want to glaze the outside. They are about 18" x 1" with 3/4" inside diameter. I'd like to be able to glaze 12 or so at a time.

 

 

 

Any ideas would be greatly appreciated.

 

-Brian

 

 

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I am only glazing on the outside, firing to cone 6. I was thinking about making some stilts and firing them to hold the flute from the end hole and where the the fetish goes.  They might sag though. I wonder if there are any kiln furniture for this purpose.

 

-B

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At about $60 per 12 pack plus shipping, I would much rather make my own... You could actually customize a really nice rack with ni-chrome wire and clay supporting through the tones holes. The mention of a fetish I assume indicates these are reeded instruments, similar to Native American "flutes..." which are in the whistle/recorder family, and would not have an embouchure hole as flutes do... the issue I would foresee is the reed placement being too far away from the end to allow for good support of the overall body of the instrument. Well place unglazed areas might work best in this case.

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I appreciate all of the comments and suggestions, thank you. My flutes use a slow air chamber which I believe is known as Fipple. The design is popularly known as Native American Flute even though I believe they are a fairly modern European design also used in pipe organs.

 

flutopedia is an awesome resource on flutes, here is one of their entries on fipple: http://flutopedia.com/fipple.htm

 

I will not be glazing where the fetish (the piece that directs the air to the cutting edge) or the inside of the body of the flute. I will be brushing glaze on carefully keeping it out of the inside of the holes. They bisque fine fine laying on their side but I've never fired one to cone 6. They do survive a pit fire with minimum curving.

I just threw a giant ring holder a few minutes ago, maybe that will work. Need to make a bunch of them if it does. I found that form kind of hard to throw it is so small for my large hands. Do you think it would be better hollow? Eventually I would like to try an Raku these things so I need to be able to get some tongs on them while they are in the kiln without knocking over the others.

gallery_20894_645_33843.jpg

 

gallery_20894_645_53837.jpg

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In googling around recently, I thought I found some stilts made for higher temps.

http://www.theceramicshop.com/store/department/9/Stilts/

 

Have you considered terra sig rather than glaze? Newman's Red TS is beautiful at cone 6.

 

If those are the same stilts they've always  made, the clay handles the high temp just fine, but the wire doesn't. I've got a bunch and at cone 6 the wire bends. You can get a few uses from them, but they don't last.

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I appreciate all of the comments and suggestions, thank you. My flutes use a slow air chamber which I believe is known as Fipple. The design is popularly known as Native American Flute even though I believe they are a fairly modern European design also used in pipe organs.

 

flutopedia is an awesome resource on flutes, here is one of their entries on fipple: http://flutopedia.com/fipple.htm

 

I will not be glazing where the fetish (the piece that directs the air to the cutting edge) or the inside of the body of the flute. I will be brushing glaze on carefully keeping it out of the inside of the holes. They bisque fine fine laying on their side but I've never fired one to cone 6. They do survive a pit fire with minimum curving.

I just threw a giant ring holder a few minutes ago, maybe that will work. Need to make a bunch of them if it does. I found that form kind of hard to throw it is so small for my large hands. Do you think it would be better hollow? Eventually I would like to try an Raku these things so I need to be able to get some tongs on them while they are in the kiln without knocking over the others.

gallery_20894_645_33843.jpg

 

gallery_20894_645_53837.jpg

I have refractory clay. I will try to make ring holders with it as you have done. I have also thought about buying refractory metal rods (but I think they are very costly).

 

In the past when I used stilts, the flutes bent too much. I ended up glazing only the mouthpiece with low fire glaze. The flutes were fired horizontally on kiln shelves. I sealed the flutes with polyurethane. I'm still looking for a great way to glaze to cone 6.

 

Jed

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I was able to trim the giant ring holder after it set up a bit and remove the wedge at the bottom. I set a dry green flute on it before I took it off the wheel and it stood up perfectly with the end of the flute resting on the bottom plate part. I will still bisque them lying flat on the shelf but hopefully the bending will be reduced at ^6 with it standing on end. Now I need to throw a bunch of them.

 

-Brian

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At the risk of enraging someone by offering an idea that I have not personally tried, could you suspend the flutes in the kiln by appropriate wires?  We bake ceramic coating and other industrial coating on auto and machine parts this way.  The temp in the kiln is higher, but using appropriate material, it looks like you could put the wire down the middle where the glaze will not touch.

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At the risk of enraging someone by offering an idea that I have not personally tried, could you suspend the flutes in the kiln by appropriate wires?  We bake ceramic coating and other industrial coating on auto and machine parts this way.  The temp in the kiln is higher, but using appropriate material, it looks like you could put the wire down the middle where the glaze will not touch.

Do you know how much weight nickel cad wire can hold? The wire would need to hold the flutes vertically or the flutes would bend.

 

The idea has potential.

 

Jed

 

P.S. I will accept suggestions from anyone who has an idea...

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At the risk of enraging someone by offering an idea that I have not personally tried, could you suspend the flutes in the kiln by appropriate wires?  We bake ceramic coating and other industrial coating on auto and machine parts this way.  The temp in the kiln is higher, but using appropriate material, it looks like you could put the wire down the middle where the glaze will not touch.

Do you know how much weight nickel cad wire can hold? The wire would need to hold the flutes vertically or the flutes would bend.

 

The idea has potential.

 

Jed

 

P.S. I will accept suggestions from anyone who has an idea...

 

I don't know the specs on the wire, but presumably thicker wire is available.  As for bending, if the flutes are already bisque, not sure how they would bend, but the force/weight would be very similar if not identical to standing them on thier end on a peg etc.  My idea would be to run some sort of support across the top of the kiln and suspend the flutes vertically as you say.  By hanging them from several cross wires and at different levels you might be able to very efficiently fill the kiln. 

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