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bciskepottery

Member Since 28 Jun 2010
Offline Last Active Today, 06:05 AM
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#66888 I Got 84 Kiln Brick But A Reduction Ain't One.

Posted by bciskepottery on Yesterday, 08:08 PM

I built and fired a small salt kiln in grad school that was big enough for one 12x24 in shelf- 27 inches tall with 27" x 22.5" interior. It was a simple cross draft with a hole in the top corner for an exit flue, and one power burner. The top was kiln shelves covered with firebricks. It fired like a charm and gave great results. But even that little kiln, which I wouldn't go any smaller than, took 500 bricks.


I was reading Phil Rogers book, Salt Firing, and he tells a story of Walter Keeler, renowned for salt firing, building such a small kiln in about an hour. Seems Keeler had agreed to sending pots to the Victoria and Albert for an exhibition but had no salt kiln. The small kiln was large enough to fire six tall jugs. (see pages 163/164 for the story). Rogers also has the plans for a ~500 brick small salt kiln, about 12 cu.ft. in the book (pages 68 to 72), including materials list. [Cue the rush to Amazon to order copies of Phil's book).


#66307 Soda Ash Wash And Electric Firing

Posted by bciskepottery on 18 September 2014 - 07:41 AM

You can vary the effect by the ratio of soda ash to water (hot). I think Chris C. used 1/4c soda ash to a cup of water; I've been going with less -- more like 1/8c soda ash to a cup of water. Basically, you get a sheen on the bare clay surface. Works for me as I do a lot of oxide washes on bare clay for exteriors and the slight sheen gives it a bit of finished look, vs. just fired clay.

Application will make a difference. You need to be fairly consistent in applying the soda ash wash. Too much/too heavy will make a spot shinier than others. I usually just dip a small sponge in the solution, wring it out, then wipe. I'd rather do a couple of light solution passes than one heavy one.

I apply oxides/stains/underglazes to greenware at leatherhard so it gets bisqued; that reduces bleeding, etc. from the soda ash was applied for the glaze firing. But, you may get some bleeding. Just have to practice and experiment with application process).

I only do a small number of pieces per load; that is not enough soda to really impact elements. Just run a bisque between glaze loads and your burn off any residual stuff from the elements.


#66186 What Weight Of Clay Do You Use For Yunomis?

Posted by bciskepottery on 15 September 2014 - 09:48 AM

A few years ago, I was talking with a potter who made yunomi and asked what was the difference between a $500 one (from his slide show) and the $45 ones he was selling to the workshop. He showed me the picture again and pointed out the ash glaze flow on the cup, fired on its side, into a single drip/spot on the side that was the bottom. That is what we call "dragon's eye" and is very rare -- that is a $500 yunomi. Pointing to the yunomi on the table for sale, he said, no dragon's eye, $45 cup. I own a $45 yunomi from him -- but would love to have one with the "dragon's eye".


#66015 Co-Op

Posted by bciskepottery on 11 September 2014 - 04:48 PM

Questions I would ask myself:

1. Would becoming a full partner increase my sales? Do partners tend to sell better than those on consignment?
2. Does the cost of 40% commission to the store offset the time spent fulfilling full partner commitments, e.g., is regaining 40% greater than the cost of 2.5 days working, 1 evening meeting, and whatever time spent of responsible task, along with the new charges of monthly rent and "all other costs"?
3. What is turnover among partners and why do partners leave?

The "all other costs" being subtracted from sales means you will not keep 100% of sales. Any idea what those costs are? I'd rather have a higher "rent" each month, with no other charges, that is consistent than a variable charge.

I was invited to a similar enterprise and decided my time making wares, etc. was more valuable to me and said no.


#65720 Questions About Firing With Peep Out

Posted by bciskepottery on 06 September 2014 - 09:09 PM

I always fire with all the peeps out.  I've tried firing with them in, but they always seem to melt when I do, and I was tired of clean up the mess...
 
7476183-media_httpwwwenquirer_qrryv.jpg

Benzine, early am here.. what am I not getting, school back and humour is warped already? Do the peeps echo?


It's a peeps thing. No echo, just . . . art.

http://www.washingto...magazine/peeps/


#65530 Collaborative Work

Posted by bciskepottery on 02 September 2014 - 10:25 PM

[/quote]
Such complimentary stuff, must feel great.
[/quote]

Actually, a bit daunting. Taking the wares after she puts her artwork on them . . . all I can think of is, "How many ways can I screw up a clear glaze firing?" And just when you think you've thought of all the ways . . . (fill in the blank). Her work is so lovely, you just don't want to screw it up.




#65513 Collaborative Work

Posted by bciskepottery on 02 September 2014 - 07:05 PM

HB047_a.jpg HB028_a.jpg HB032.jpg

I've been working with Hsi-Mei Yates, a Chinese brush artist (and also my painting teacher). I make the pottery, she decorates, and I fire. These are mostly pieces we sell through galleries where she also has her other paintings. Having painted with her, I had a sense of how she painted and made pottery forms that would allow her to use the same expressions and techniques on clay as she does on paper. These are pieces she featured in her show at the Liberty Town Arts Workshop in Fredericksburg, VA.


#65441 Letter To A Young Potter

Posted by bciskepottery on 01 September 2014 - 06:32 AM

http://cartergillies...a-young-potter/

Wonderful advice and a worthwhile read -- even for us "old" potters.


#65042 Kaolin Substitutions

Posted by bciskepottery on 24 August 2014 - 08:04 PM

But you need to have a Dark Side kiln (ripped off from Facebook):

 

 

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#64929 New Kiln Questions

Posted by bciskepottery on 22 August 2014 - 08:41 PM

Your L&L will come with a very comprehensive and informative user manual; don't be shy about becoming friends with it. For your first test firing, shelves (with kiln wash if you chose to use kiln wash) and posts -- no pottery. Just follow the instructions in the user manual. The first/test firing is to burn off the protective coating on the elements.

For your test tiles, bisque them in stacks of how every many you want to -- 5, 10, 15, etc.; the middle ones will not become discolored or be underfired because of the height of the stack.


#64473 Slip Trailing - Silly Post

Posted by bciskepottery on 14 August 2014 - 10:06 PM

Sure hope the colorants in the icing were encapsulated. Makes them "food safe" and stuff.


#63785 What Are You Working On?

Posted by bciskepottery on 03 August 2014 - 07:50 PM

What do you mean, "What do you do about the frogs'?   I glue them in with E6000.

That's what I wondered so you buy them, I was mulling over ways to make them of ceramic but I didn't think it realistic.  Now I'm not thinking it realistic some more... They seem an expensive addition to a product but the people seem to desperately want ikibanas.


If you go to Michaels or the other "big box" stores, a kenzan/frog is expensive. I buy mine in bulk I two sizes, 23mm and 32mm; they add about $1.80 to the cost of the vase -- $2.00 rounded up added to selling price. If I did not buy bulk, I could not make these at an affordable price. I have bought from a seller on E-bay and from www.ezpots.com.


#63774 What Are You Working On?

Posted by bciskepottery on 03 August 2014 - 07:13 PM

Last week was making ikebana vases for an upcoming salt firing.  Hand-building.  At the beach.

Way cool, everybody is talking ikebana at the craft shows and farmer's markets lately!  I wonder, what do you do about the frogs???


For these type of ikebana, I use a dab of E6000 silicone adhesive to fix the kenzan/frog in the vase. These are "closed" forms with a hole in the top to put flowers, so you don't want the kenzan/frog moving around. I make several varieties/variations of ikebana vases; they are my top seller. I display them with live flowers, so customers can readily see how to use them.


#62905 Shelf Grinding

Posted by bciskepottery on 20 July 2014 - 08:46 PM

Would you like eggs and toast with your links?

Would not recommend the diamond pads . . . you'll eat through a ton of them. We just cleaned 21 shelves from a salt firing . . . used carbide grinding stones, stiff putty knives, chisel with hand protector; so serious glaze runs so the angle grinder stayed at the workbench. For small glaze drops, a flat-headed screwdriver and hammer work. You just need to learn how to angle the knife/screwdriver/chisel so that you catch under the lip of the glaze bead. For bad glaze runs, grinder.

And, in all situations . . . wear your respirator, eye protection, and work gloves (no cheap cloth gloves); slivers of glaze can cause serious cuts. And never run your bare hand over the kiln shelf to see if there are any glaze spots that need removal.


#62879 What Makes A Good Mizusashi Good?

Posted by bciskepottery on 20 July 2014 - 05:07 PM

http://www.shozo-mic...ashi/index.html

Sigh. Maybe in another lifetime.