So I have spent the morning cleaning off bisqued ware with a sponge and water. *hate* it, hate glazing too but that is beside the point. My question is, does anyone use a compressor and air to clean off pots before glazing and if yes, have you had successful results?
Sponge Cleaning Before Glazing
Posted 01 June 2014 - 12:04 PM
You can blow them off with compressed air -brush them with a soft brush or as you do wet sponge.
Posted 01 June 2014 - 12:24 PM
what are you trying to take off, just dust or loose bits of clay? if so, just dipping each piece in a bucket of clean water will work fine. you might be surprised by the tiny bits of this stuff you will find in the bottom of your bucket.
Posted 01 June 2014 - 12:25 PM
I wax all my bottoms-of my pots that is.
I wet sponge them. Don't like spraying dust around my studio. It is possible to glaze stuff upside down without waxing. I do this on wider bottoms [of pots], such as pie dishes. Waxing is not my favourite task.
Ain't ceramis grand?
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Posted 01 June 2014 - 12:51 PM
Going to try the hot wax this week, bought a BIG elec skillet, $34, at Wally World. I hope it is a quick learning curve, I need more efficiency, not less. I will let you know how it goes for me.
Posted 01 June 2014 - 02:03 PM
I use compressed air from my big compressor. Has worked well for 10 years, although it might depend on the clay you are throwing with. I set the compressor for about 90# of pressure and use a small hand-held blow gun. My shop has a garage door so I do all of this outside.
Posted 01 June 2014 - 05:05 PM
I wash all pieces with a damp sponge. This usually happens 4-5 pieces at a time as I glaze them pretty soon afterward. Over the years, I have found that my best glaze thickness occurs doing it this way. I fire to ^06 and the clay porosity absorbs more evenly with a bit of water in the piece. That said, I have at times dipped the entire piece, and let it dry longer, or even sprayed a ligh mist of water onto the piece before glazing. I have been predominantly dip/pour glazing for 30 years with atomized glaze and underglaze over top. However, this last load I used a sprayer with a compressor to put some of my glazes on while pouring others.
Posted 01 June 2014 - 06:09 PM
Posted 01 June 2014 - 06:26 PM
I have rarely ever washed or dusted pots-I try to process them in sort order but if they sit few weeks no big deal. I have no idea why you would wash all of them. Isnt it easier to cover them in 1st place from dust?
Posted 01 June 2014 - 06:38 PM
I damp sponge them because of glaze application thickness and I bisque to C 06 Now I even add vinegar to water for a certain glaze which seems to allow a white scumming to occur after firing. Anyone with a cure for that would be my friend for life. Even witrh the Vinegar wipe it'll appear inthe texture crevices on occasion.
Just done an intensive Iyengar yoga week on what memory brings to "the table" and it usually brings prejudice and bias!
So Dharsi, look at every time you dust/wipe yout ware with unbiased eyes and you may enjoy the process of having another intimate time with yoour fantastic pots before they face the harsh kiln process!
Happiness is having a short memory.......
Posted 01 June 2014 - 06:42 PM
I'm with Mark.
Heresy coming here........ I almost NEVER wash off bisque. If I am, it is because something got splashed on there or something like that.
If you ae doing this to adjust the absorbtion of the glaze........ either bisque higher (your clay will likely be better -less glaze defects- for it) or change the specific gravity and viscosity of your glazes.
If you studio is so dusty that you have to do this to prevent glaze issues....... you have some OTHER issues to address.
Professor of Ceramics; New Hampshire Insitute of Art
Guest Professor, Wuxi Institute of Arts and Science, Yixing, China
Former President and Past President; Potters Council
Posted 01 June 2014 - 06:53 PM
True, I could adjust the glaze to a thinner viscosity, or fire to a higher temperature, but I have done both to try working in an easier manner. Neither seemed to work quite as well as what I am presently doing. As to dust in the studio, I usually do not cover ware, and sometimes a pot will sit for 3 months without being fired, heck sometimes 6 months. All of this depends on what fits in the kiln and how often I am firing. If I were running loads once or twice a week as I did in the 90's then I would probably do less washing using the glaze thinner.
When I did mess up a bisque load firing it to cone probably ^3-4 my glazes went on thin, and the pieces came out looking more like a wood/ash fired direction. Not really what I was looking for but interesting.
Posted 01 June 2014 - 07:00 PM
Old dogs new tricks/
I also put a lot of texture on my pots, stain and rub back in dry state, with mask on, so there's a lot of fien clay/oxide to get rid off to allow the glaze to adhere to all of the surface.
Have been pondering going higher in bisque but weighing up the economics of this. 'last lot of clay problematic may drive me this way.
Posted 01 June 2014 - 07:02 PM
Posted 01 June 2014 - 07:06 PM
Posted 01 June 2014 - 08:51 PM
For me as a studio potter on a well in a drought -water is used when it really is needed
Beside washing a 35 cubic foot kiln load every week or two makes no sense. I have covered bats full of bisque to keep dust off with paper many times as thats faster than other methods.
Being efficient is key to making a living with pots. I know of no other studio potters washing pots-its just not done
I think its easier to get your glazes right and to learn that than the guess work of wet bisque?
This is sounding like an urban mith starting
my 2 cents
Posted 01 June 2014 - 10:12 PM
I wash my pieces off before glazing because I hate having a lovely piece with a pinhole or small unglazed dot because there was a piece of dirt/dust/clay/whathaveyou on the surface when I glazed the pot. I don't know if this is an issue with wood fired work or even in a soda firing, but it sure is in an electric kiln even when I bisque to ^04. I get that pin holing can be caused by improper bisque firing but these little holidays occur from dust/dirt specks.
This doesn't mean that my stuff is covered with dust, that isn't what I am referring to. It is interesting that wiping with a slightly damp sponge is also recommended by Hesselberth and Roy as well in MC6G, to remove dust and specks which can leave bits of missing glaze and occasionally crawling. I admit that sometimes I get lazy and skip this step. Sometimes I get away with it, but it seems that on the pieces I like the best, I will find a speck of missing glaze.
Posted 01 June 2014 - 10:18 PM
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Posted 01 June 2014 - 10:32 PM
thanks, stellaria, for seconding the bucket of water idea. it is certainly less wasteful than running water since a single bucket of water will handle several kiln loads if you put the top on between. and saves so much time over sponging! I use the leftover water on the garden just outside the door.
- Stellaria likes this
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