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Member Since 29 Jul 2010
Offline Last Active Today, 09:31 AM

Topics I've Started

Black Spots Falling From Lid Into Glaze

11 September 2015 - 02:23 PM

bad experience the firing before last.  found the items on the top shelf had various bits of black fired inside the glaze.  most awful was the long tray covered with bluegreen slip with the leaves done in clear.  great big black spot right in the center of the pot!  naturally, it was on one of the clear ginko leaves.  several smaller black blobs on other things as well.
last firing..............very carefully let the lid down after packing the kiln.  noticed black spots raining down onto the work and shelf.  removed each piece, blew the bits of black off and tried again.  took three tries before i finally was satisfied that no black spots were going to surprise me on opening the fired kiln.
after that firing, i looked carefully at my kiln lid.  yes, there is a crack, no wider than one of these letters   l    running sort of in a semi-circle below the center of the lid.  had just gotten an ad from L&L about their kilns and read that one of their special features is a "proprietary reflective brick coating that protects brick and minimizes dusting."  So i called to ask about it.  poor customer service person had no idea what i was talking about even after i read it from the catalog.  he was so bored with life in general that i practically had to beat him to take my order.  no, he did not know how much it was going to cost to send it.  no, they only use one shipper.  no, he had no info on how to use the stuff.  i was very sorry that i called.
the stuff came in a box about 4x4 inches, closed with 4 heavy copper staples.  had a hard time getting into the box.  inside was a plain white jar without a label.  nothing in the box but my invoice showing the name Facing Cement.  could not get the jar open, was it cemented closed???
called L&L.  long time waiting for someone who knew what this stuff is and how to use it.  told that i could not talk to anyone without my kiln model number.  lots of agony for nothing at all.
loaded the kiln today and just before closing the lid, i put a heavy plastic tablecloth on the top of the kiln and weighted it down so i could use the outdoor grass blower to clean and dust the lid bottom.  blew that thing so clean i could not believe it.  the black stuff was all over the plastic cloth when i finished and i carefully gathered it up and looked to see if i could identify it.  
the metal band holding the lid has been heated repeatedly over the years and it has dark fumed discoloration.  is it corroded? eroded? failed?  whatever the cause, the metal is flaking off and falling into the kiln as the lid flexes when i close it.  
anybody got a cure?   i am not about to call the L&L number again.  i HATE being treated like i am an idiot who just doesn't know anything.  "obviously there is something falling through the crack" was the suggestion.

Has Anyone Heard Of A Kiln Brand Called Norman?

17 August 2015 - 12:21 PM

there is a small kiln advertised with no technical info and it might serve as a test kiln if i can get any info about it.  anybody know anything?????

Painting Underglazes On Bisque With Brushes

07 August 2015 - 08:02 PM

maybe none of you have had the same problem i have with painting on bisque with a brush.  if it is easy for you, ignore this.  


marcia selsor posted a video today showing linda arbuckle painting her marvelous colors and shapes on majolica glazed bisqueware.  it hit me as a bolt from the blue that the reason her work looks so easy is that the creamy, luscious medium she uses flows onto the pots.  but when i try using a brush on plain, white bisque it sticks, starts, stops and is awful.  


after seeing this video, i opened the tiny jars of the same thing linda uses.  but mine were all dried out and could not be used at all until i added water.  so i added water to the colors and still did not have the same fluid brushwork as linda.  then it hit me.   WET THE BISQUE!   we do that when glazing, why not when working with a brush?   it worked, even with the dried out underglaze thinned to a wash after scraping the top of the colors to get some pigment loose.


i still cannot paint but the stuff i put on those two things today went on easily, flowed down the brush and moved in any direction i wanted it to go.  i have always wanted to paint but have no skill at all.  at least now, i think i might try again.


(i decided a long time ago that linda arbuckle is who i want to be if i ever grow up.)

Who Knows How To Use Potterbarter? Need Help Posting Free Items

03 August 2015 - 09:40 PM

ok, you know i hate to type so there it was, a nice ad for the two old paragon kilns i have ready to be made into something by someone else.  gas, wood, whatever.  at least i thought i had typed an ad.  i hit post and it disappeared with all the measurements i just took. :angry:


what is the secret?  surely someone here has used it to post an ad.  how is it done?

Using Fresh Leaves For Making Molds

10 July 2015 - 08:51 AM

many of my pots are made using bisqued slabs that have fresh leaves rolled deeply into them.  once bisqued, they allow a new slab rolled over them to have great relief designs that i make into dishes, trays, and the flowerpot shown in the community challenge.  when i am in florida, i have access to a number of interesting leaf shapes that do not grow in west va where i work now.  so, finding substitutes here is a little like a treasure hunt.


the ones i like most are from delphiniums.  they are just heavy enough and have a shape that fits nicely with my needs.  unfortunately, i have used up all the ones i have.  do any of you grow them or their relatives?  i would love to find a source and happy to pay for shipping.


heavily veined, sturdy leaves like those of hydrangeas work the best to roll into clay.   i use those all the time for spoon rests but i am looking for any other kinds you might suggest for making relief molds.   who among you is a gardener?