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AndreaHeilotes

How To Pit Fire

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I have no idea how to do this, but I've had a few failed experiments.

 

Is there a step-by-step any one knows about, or even a general faq on how to pit fire.

 

I definitely like the results I see from other artists that pit fire their work.

 

Things I need to know,

 

1)Roughly how long doesthe fire need to go to fully bisque a single piece.

 

2)What is the general structure of wood that I need to make? My guess is a cone or teepee shape of wood around the piece in the center, possibly some wood under the piece.

 

3)Roughly how hot do I need to get the fire and how do I achieve this heat? Will the wood alone be enough?

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Andrea, based on your questions you are wanting to fire from greenware.   We bisque fire ours first, but if that is not an option for you i'll tell you what I know from reading about traditional pit firing.

 

 With greenware you will need to pre warm the pieces this can be completed by building a small fire and placing the greenware around the fire to finish drying it out.  This will take 1-5 hours, during which time you need to rotate the pieces and continue to feed the fire to keep a small fire going.  Once this is done you can more the pieces closer to the fire, I'd recommend a iron grate to set them on so you can build the fire around / over the piece.  you can use dried manure, seaweed for colorants and put them in with the teepee you build around the piece. Let it burn until the piece is exposed and cool enough to handle.

 

The final piece will not reach "bisque" fire temp, and should be handled with care.

 

Best of luck.

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I have no idea how to do this, but I've had a few failed experiments.

 

Is there a step-by-step any one knows about, or even a general faq on how to pit fire.

 

I definitely like the results I see from other artists that pit fire their work.

 

Things I need to know,

 

1)Roughly how long doesthe fire need to go to fully bisque a single piece.

 

2)What is the general structure of wood that I need to make? My guess is a cone or teepee shape of wood around the piece in the center, possibly some wood under the piece.

 

3)Roughly how hot do I need to get the fire and how do I achieve this heat? Will the wood alone be enough?

Hey,

     We all start out with failed experiments...  Thats why they are called experiments. ;)

 

1. 20 minutes, but it first has to be pre-heated 1hr 10 minutes for the first one, then 20 minutes for each one afterwards.  Thats why the first one is often called

the sacrifice.

 

2.  correct

 

3. The teepee of sticks will reach b/n 1100 and 1300 degrees which is twice of which is needed.

 

books: Traditional Pottery of Paupau New Guinea

           Pottery Technology

           Ceramics Monthly article on Traditional Potters of the Ivory Coast

            Sun Circles and Human Hands (contains early ethnographers accounts)

            You may want to talk to a local archaeologist in your area.

            Ceramics for the Archaeologist - Anna Shepard

            Pottery Analysis (I think)  Prudence Rice

          

            Anything written about US Southwestern pottery is useless for your means.

 

I haven't seen this video for years, but if it is the one I think it is, its mostly correct.   www.youtube.com  "primitive pottery" by Michael Pewtherer

See you later,

Alabama

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