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Member Since 08 Sep 2012
Offline Last Active Jul 22 2016 04:33 PM

Topics I've Started

How To Build A Hand Warmer Mug

12 March 2016 - 12:02 PM

Does anyone have any experience or tips, for how to create a "hand warmer" style of mug?


For those unfamiliar with the term, here is what they look like:




I've never made one, but had a student ask me how to do so.  So, I said I'd look into it, and try to figure something out.


My first instinct, is to just throw the body, then cut out a portion of the wall, for the hand slot.  Then form a thin slab on the inside to fill in the space, score/ slip it in place, and smooth together.


Is that about the gist of it, or is there a better/ easier way?


Edit:  I noticed, that there is a part of the wall that bows out too.  So it's not so much cutting a part of the wall out, as it is making a slice, pushing part out, part in, and then using a slab to make the interior slot?

Underglazes Thinning On Their Own?

02 February 2016 - 11:04 AM

In my classroom, I've occasionally come across some of our commercial underglazes (Amaco), that seem very watery.


They seem fine, when the bottles are opened, but over time thin out.  I am not watering them down, and I've never seen a student do so either.  Most the time, if a glaze or underglaze is too thick, they bring it to my attention.  That's why I don't think they have had water added to them.


Is it possible that underglazes can thin out, due to a change in their chemistry?  They are not settling/ hard panning.  


Is there a solution/ fix to this?


On a somewhat related note, some turn darker in the bottle, regardless of color, and create a lovely smell.  The darkness burns out.  I'm guess this is due to a bacteria or mold eating some of the materials in the underglaze.  

Raising The Dead

23 July 2015 - 05:32 PM

Years ago, when I was still relatively new to the forum, I asked about getting my kiln up and running.  I got some good responses/ advice, but never too it much further than that.


Sooooo, here I am, a couple years older, and ready to go.  Some of it has to do, with me finally getting the "OK" from my insurance provider.  


This time, I'm including some pictures of what I'm working with.  I have the tag, a general exterior shot, the control panel, the plug and the interior.


So basically, I'd like to know, what I need to do, in order to get this up and running.  I do still need to run a line, to the location.  The breaker box, for my house is about twenty to thirty feet away.  I do have a small sub panel in the studio space, as the previous owner had a wood shop set up in there.  He has some "Small 220" outlets, that he had for his larger equipment.  I would have no issue possibly using a couple of those.  I have nothing I'd ever use them for otherwise.  Because that sub panel is a whole four feet away from the kiln.  Though, to properly run the line, it would be longer, to run the wire along the wall and such.  But still, better than twenty to thirty feet.


The plug end, is just ridiculous, and I'd like to replace it.  Though I could also hard wire it into the panel, which I know is many times recommended, to avoid plug corrosion and potential fire.


I noted in the picture of the control panel, that the top and middle ring connections, do not fit together all the way.  How can I remedy that?


The elements look in fairly good shape.  No breaks or sagging, as far as I can tell.  


The brick is in OK shape.  Some chunks missing, either from rough loading/ unloading, or possibly element replacement.  As I noted in the interior shot, the big chunks of brick sitting on the bottom, are not from the wall bricks.  They just came with the kiln.


The kiln bottom looks good.  It has some small cracks, but no different than most other, used, kilns I've seen.


I do believe this kiln, at one time, had an Envirovent connected.  Sadly that didn't come with it, but I received a folder with a lot of the kiln info, and it had vent info with it.  There are also some holes drilled in the kiln floor and lid.  And if that wasn't enough evidence, it has a sticker on the metal of the lid, that says "Envirovent"...


I think that's about it.  I should note, that I plan to fire to cone 6 in this.


Any help, suggestion will be appreciated.