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Ian Currie Test Tiles Forums?

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The calculations page looks right, just did it myself to be sure.  However, you did it the long way if you mixed 35 different glazes one at a time.   Curries method is one massive shortcut for turning 4 glazes into 35.

 

His innovation was to only have to actually mix four (largish) batches of glazes (the corners A B C and D), and from that get 35 different glazes by blending them by volume, transferring the right amount from each corner into each one the 35 cups. (!)  The key to this once you get the dry materials put together for each corner, you add water until each of the four corners has the same VOLUME (in millilitres).  Put another way, you shift from weight in grams for the dry ingredients, to millilitres of liquid when you add enough water to each corner glaze to make them all equal.  So what you eventually put in each of the 35 cups is slightly differing amounts of liquid drawn from these four corners of now liquid glaze slop (more on this further down). Have a look at the page below which is out of his book for the executive summary on mixing the four corner glazes (I suggest you stick with his 300 grams for the four corners, at least to start).  Then look further below to see what to do next.

 

Page100.jpg

 

NOW, print a copy of this next page below and put it on the table very close to where you have arranged the 35 cups exactly as they are shown here.   You will be referring to it constantly. This is the master map of what goes in each cup.  Each of the 35 circles is divided up into four quarters, showing you how much glaze to draw from each of the four corner batches to put in each of the 35 cups.  You will need a 50 ml syringe (no needle!) from your medical cabinet and you will use it to systematically draw out the right amount from each corner and put it in the 35 cups one at a time.  This may sound a bit complicated, but dry mixing up the four corner batches and getting them to equal liquid volume is the messing around part.  Once you get going with the syringe the whole process really flies. 

 

 

blending_chart.gif

 

If you do it this way you will have enough glaze to fill each cell adequately, plus add the extra little upside down y shape in a second pass.  This will give a much better idea of melting behaviour.

 

Good luck!

 

If I understand things correctly, there's a slightly easier way of combining the four corner glazes. Make line blends with A and B, and then C and D to get the glazes for cells 1 to 5, and 31 to 35, using more glaze than you normally would. Then make line blends along each of the columns to fill the remaining cells. This means you use the syringe 62 times, instead of 92.

 

By the way, it looks like Ian Currie's website has disappeared.

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This is a fascinating thread for me, but also frustrating because I was on Ian's site last week and this week it is gone. (All the domains associated with him are now down. Does anyone know any contact details for whomever used to maintain the sites?)

 

Doubly frustrating is the fact that I have only just signed up here, and just begun to get back into pottery after a long hiatus. In the meantime I will find his books and begin to experiment, as I am trying to find options for a difficult-to-glaze black stoneware body.

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This is a fascinating thread for me, but also frustrating because I was on Ian's site last week and this week it is gone. (All the domains associated with him are now down. Does anyone know any contact details for whomever used to maintain the sites?)

 

Doubly frustrating is the fact that I have only just signed up here, and just begun to get back into pottery after a long hiatus. In the meantime I will find his books and begin to experiment, as I am trying to find options for a difficult-to-glaze black stoneware body.

 

 

I made a spreadsheet on Google that works out each glaze. What it doesn't do is input the right silica and kaolin values as I wanted to use it to create grids outside those constraints. Right now I think it does have the right values in to do a true currie test and you can mess around with the flux ratio between themselves. Will double check when I have my glaze book.

 

Fill in the blue boxes and the rest is worked out.  It has a table of grams of glaze per test and a table of how many ml of each glaze you add. Then another of each 35 glaze.

 

Save your own copy as backup because it is free to edit by anybody with the link. Also a few other things saved on my laptop that I can post later.

 

 

https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/129uoksduhYn0jIztu15FkSrmF2A_Z90sm82EGJOk5y4/edit?usp=sharing

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Luckily there is an archive of Ian's sites, thanks to Wayback. You can see ian.currie.to here: https://web.archive.org/web/20150518132734/http://ian.currie.to/

and glazes.org here: https://web.archive.org/web/20101013140626/http://www.glazes.org/index.html

For those of you with a more tecchie web bent, the source code for ian.currie.to is also on Github here: https://github.com/hamish/ianscurrieand can be freely downloaded. I believe Hamish is Ian's son.

Tim

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Hello All

 

I came across Ian Currie's website last year. I was thrilled to find Stoneware Glazes: A Systematic Approach (online book) as that is exactly what I was looking for to start understanding glazes. I was overwhelmed to see how generously this book was hosted free for all to use.

 

Its great to find this forum and I will soon be posting my experience with Currie's Grids.

 

For now - just wanted to say a quick Hello to all.

 

I just checked the website. It has been partially revived ! ian.currie.to is back.

 

More later,

 

Shikha

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Luckily there is an archive of Ian's sites, thanks to Wayback. You can see ian.currie.to here: https://web.archive.org/web/20150518132734/http://ian.currie.to/

and glazes.org here: https://web.archive.org/web/20101013140626/http://www.glazes.org/index.html

For those of you with a more tecchie web bent, the source code for ian.currie.to is also on Github here: https://github.com/hamish/ianscurrieand can be freely downloaded. I believe Hamish is Ian's son.

Tim

 

 

Thanks Tim. These links are very helpful.

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Good to know it is there Tim :D Thanks for the info.

 

Hello All

 

I came across Ian Currie's website last year. I was thrilled to find Stoneware Glazes: A Systematic Approach (online book) as that is exactly what I was looking for to start understanding glazes. I was overwhelmed to see how generously this book was hosted free for all to use.

 

Its great to find this forum and I will soon be posting my experience with Currie's Grids.

 

For now - just wanted to say a quick Hello to all.

 

I just checked the website. It has been partially revived ! ian.currie.to is back.

 

More later,

 

Shikha

 

Welcome to the forum, please do post your currie tests :D I like a good test tile. Do you have a link to this free book?

 

Need to make myself some more so I can test again, just keep getting distracted.

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My Ceramics monthly for October seems to have arrived early. In the back they have an article on Ian Currie and his grids so maybe more people will be finding this topic. I like to think this topic had something to do with it but that might be dreaming too hard :D lol

 

They talk about using the syringe to squirt the glaze into squares, why don't they just use a spoon. Makes life a lot easier, I switched to a tea spoon after a few goes and very messy times.

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Hi Joel,

I use a small (2.5cc) syringe to put the glaze into the squares as I find it easier to control how much goes on - as long as the syringe isn't old and no longer runs smoothly from the glaze particles wearing it away (a friend is a vet so I have a good supply of free syringes).

I started with a brush and found it hard to control the amount of glaze in each square, with it often over running into adjacent ones.

Tim

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My Ceramics monthly for October seems to have arrived early. In the back they have an article on Ian Currie and his grids so maybe more people will be finding this topic.

 

Not as long as we continue to see the proliferation of commercially prepared glazes that imitate the look of shinos, celadons, etc. without the work of this type of learning/experimentation. 

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Hi Joel,

I use a small (2.5cc) syringe to put the glaze into the squares as I find it easier to control how much goes on - as long as the syringe isn't old and no longer runs smoothly from the glaze particles wearing it away (a friend is a vet so I have a good supply of free syringes).

I started with a brush and found it hard to control the amount of glaze in each square, with it often over running into adjacent ones.

Tim

 

 I find it much easier to use a tea spoon (5ml volume I think) and spoon some out the cup. Makes it easy to keep the volumes added about the same and is probably more efficient. Just my thoughts.

 

 

 

My Ceramics monthly for October seems to have arrived early. In the back they have an article on Ian Currie and his grids so maybe more people will be finding this topic.

 

Not as long as we continue to see the proliferation of commercially prepared glazes that imitate the look of shinos, celadons, etc. without the work of this type of learning/experimentation. 

 

Yes, I guess people are happy to pay the premium to not learn anything about chemistry. Up to them I suppose but I like my glazes cheap :D

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In Currie's book "Revealing Glazes" he suggests either a syringe or a spoon for applying glazes to squares.  However, when you see his tiles in process and after firing it is clear he is using a syringe. 

 

The raised parts of each square (what he calls the striding man) contain critical information about how runny each glaze is, how well it is melting, etc...  He also uses the striding man to compare thick and thin inside each cell.  I guess if you were really careful you might be able to replicate some of this with a spoon, but a small syringe is much easier to point and direct the flow.  I think it would be pretty hard (in fact quite maddening) to try and produce the striding man with a spoon, although I have to admit I have never tried.

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Excelllent news. Did you get "Revealing Glazes" or the earlier one?

Revealing Glazes, since it was the one that was made for the grid method. The other one seemed more about pottery in general. I could be wrong though, also the other one wasn't available from the publisher. So.. kinda forced to get this one, but its amazing. Going to get started as soon as I finish testing this new porcelain with my glazes. If it ends up being brighter than my stoneware then I don't want to conduct all my test on stoneware and not the porcelain, so lots of beautiful test coming up. I can't wait. 

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Take some care making the master mold.  You will probably only do it once and then have to live with its imperfections for every tile you fire. Suggest the book is a good guide and make sure you put the features he has in each cell (particularly the little raised bits in the corner.

 

I carved mine carefully with a ruler so that each cell was very square looked the same as every other cell.  I think this matters subtlely for comparability across cells.  If I do it again I will make the cells larger as I think mine were a bit small.  

 

I would also stick to his suggested weights for corners and overall batches as having too little glaze in each cell can easily compromise their comparability if you get it to thin in one or more cells.

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also don't make the test tiles too thin (a false economy) or they will split and break leaking glaze tests all over the shelves and as a consequence again compromising the comparability across cells.

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How do you use the master mould, roll a slab over it? I tried making one but it didn't work as intended and I went to cutting 5mm slabs from the bagged clay and stamping in the squares, cut to shape. Used to be about 10mm but I found I can get away with 5mm and stack 3 high without too much bending.

 

I disagree about his weights and measures, they can easily be halved. Hard to do more than that because then you need to take under 1ml of glaze for some squares. Per square I only use 1tsp (5ml~) glaze so having 43ml left over is a little too much for me. I would go lower than 24ml if I had a smaller more accurate syringe.

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