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S. Dean

Member Since 18 Jun 2013
Offline Last Active Today, 05:42 PM

#120266 Broken Ceramic Element Holders

Posted by S. Dean on 09 January 2017 - 12:32 PM

Here's some info from the L&L site: https://hotkilns.com...element-holders


My gut reaction is that I would go with Method 2 unless there were only a few element holders to be replaced.  Maybe Neil can weigh in on this from his wealth of experience.


I believe that L&L updated the design of their element holders at some point. I'd suggest that you call L&L with your kiln model and serial number and find out what your options are.

#118937 Warping Of Platters

Posted by S. Dean on 22 December 2016 - 10:01 AM

Hi Andrea,


Lovely work.  Some more questions for you in addition to Roberta's:


What are you using for your mold (plaster, bisque, wood, plastic, other?)

How stiff are the platters when you are removing them from the mold? 

How are you forming/rolling your slabs?

How do you transfer the slabs into the mold?

How are you removing the clay from the mold?


 It could be a handling issue as clay has a memory. Minimizing handling and flexing the clay might help.  However, some porcelains are very finicky for hand building and warpage is the price to be paid for working with that clay body despite careful handling.


Please tell us more about your process and maybe we can try to offer some long distance advice.



#110341 Karen Karnes, 1925-2016

Posted by S. Dean on 19 July 2016 - 10:24 PM

We've lost another icon.  I didn't realize that Karen Karnes had passed away until I read the following tribute from Ann Bailey (of Bailey Ceramic Supply) earlier today.


Karen Karnes

1925 - 2016


Karen Karnes left this world last week after a long and prolific career as a clay artist. She was 91 years old. Known early on for her functional casseroles, cups, and jars, she was later admired for pushing the boundaries of function to explore the realm of clay as sculpture. Although referencing function in her later work, she was clearly stretching her expression in clay to speak metaphorically about the human form and human emotions. These intimate and very personal pieces reference the male and female form; they are works that lean in and caress each other like lovers, like old friends. 


Karen was a major influence in the studio pottery movement in America. A force to be reckoned with, Karen was a very influential person in my young life when I was an aspiring salt potter. Known for mentoring young potters struggling to make a living, she offered me her spot to show my work (12 place settings) at the Whitehouse in the 70s during the Carter administration. "I don't make dinnerware; why don't you do it!" she said. I was all of 23 years old. I'll never forget it. Needless to say, my life as a potter flourished from there. I participated with her and a small band of potters in The Old Church Cultural Center Shows for many years and made many friends. We'd always go to Mikhail Zakin's house for a pot-luck dinner. It was fun, and we all felt sheltered and encouraged by Karen's big spirit. Sadly, many of those friends are no longer with us.


Never afraid to speak her mind, Karen was very disappointed that I didn't continue making pots. She wrote to me often to try to get me back into the studio. Life can be complicated as she came to understand. We had many great conversations back in those years. Conversations I will never forget.



Karen helped so many young potters throughout her life. She presented a viable pathway for all of us to consider. Always a determined and very independent person, she pushed hard and worked hard to be recognized and respected as a clay artist. And she was. Many strong bonds were made around her commitment to inspire and educate the world about beautiful, well-made work.


Karen was an artist and a mentor and friend to many. She will be missed by everyone who knew her. I feel lucky to have had time with her during my life. Our deepest sympathies go out to her lifelong friend, Ann Stannard, and their many friends and family members around the globe. We have lost a great one.


-Anne Bailey


#105049 Need To Step Up Production

Posted by S. Dean on 11 April 2016 - 04:36 AM

You've probably already thought of this, but add in some additional contact info for the customer such as phone number and email.  That way all the information you need is in one place.

#101081 What Happened To The Guy Who Wanted................

Posted by S. Dean on 31 January 2016 - 05:50 PM

I am so glad that we have CAD.  I used to subscribe to Clayart.  Just couldn't take it anymore, between the sacred cows, holier than thous and all the drivel sprinkled between a few nuggets of useful information.  Never felt comfortable posting anything there - the slightest thing could erupt in flame wars.  


I hope we can maintain our culture of being welcoming and helpful.  



#98579 Labeling Glaze Containers Large And Small

Posted by S. Dean on 02 January 2016 - 08:56 AM

<snip>  I know that in about a year I'll likely be upgrading the volume and type of glaze storage containers, though these will still work for glazes I use in lower quantities. Right now I'll be mixing them by 1/2 to 3/4 gallon and saving space is very important since my studio is only half-finished and my glaze shelving section isn't in yet. I plan to do all actual mixing in a thick two gallon plastic bucket and only use these for storage once they're mixed/sieved since they are brittle compared to heavy-duty paint buckets. <snip>




I've found a couple of good sources for free studio buckets.  Smaller size containers can be obtained from the deli/bakery departments at the grocery store.  Containers for icing work well and are heavy duty (although after  you wash one out you will never want to eat icing on a store bought cake).  I get bigger 4-5 gallon sized buckets from my dry cleaner that their powdered laundry soap comes in.  These are the best because they are constantly the same size and ready to use with just a quick rinse.  Buy a lid opener for 5 gallon buckets - these are available in the paint section of the home improvement stores.  


At the bakery/deli, I just usually ask each time I'm in there if they have any buckets that they are throwing out that day.  Sometimes they may agree to hold them for you, but most places will not.  If they agree to hold them, pick them up when you say you will and don't be surprised/upset if all the employees don't get the message and your saved buckets got thrown out.   If they help you, put in a nice word (letter is better) with the grocery store manager.


So, although these items are "free" they require effort & time to obtain/get ready for studio use.


For labeling, right now I use a sharpie on colored duct tape on both the lid and side of the bucket.  It's quick and works well enough even though it may not be the most elegant solution.



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#98086 Proper Hand Position For Wheel Throwing?

Posted by S. Dean on 27 December 2015 - 09:13 AM



This video might be helpful to him - there are some cut away shots with hand positions.



#97212 Can You Identify Me?

Posted by S. Dean on 12 December 2015 - 06:23 AM

Since you mention that the wheel is old and broken, you should know that Creative Industries was bought by Speedball. However, they only bought and support certain wheel lines and parts/help on the really old CI wheels is "unobtanium".  

#94069 I'll Be Away For A Bit...................

Posted by S. Dean on 11 October 2015 - 09:03 PM

When I was vacationing in China in 2013, I couldn't access CAD at the beginning of my trip.  I think I was able to get in by the end of our stay.  It might now be on the "approved" list if you know what I mean.



#93371 Potters And Pets

Posted by S. Dean on 28 September 2015 - 05:45 PM

Currently we have 1 dog and 1 cat, and both are rescues.  I consider them my "4 legged children"

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#90496 Bisque Blowouts

Posted by S. Dean on 09 August 2015 - 06:31 AM

Seems like the firing is too fast.   


Did your work blow up in a bisque firing or were you trying to raw fire your work in the glaze firing of her bisque ware?  If the latter, that firing schedule is too fast - your pots need to go through a slow bisque firing.   If you continue to fire with her, she will need to adjust her firing schedule to accommodate your clay's requirements.  If she is unwilling to change her schedule, maybe its possible for you to rent the kiln from her and do a full load with only your work.  



#89949 Newbie High-Fire Glaze Question

Posted by S. Dean on 01 August 2015 - 06:37 AM



Assuming that your work is functional, the general rule is that your glaze firing needs to be done to the cone range/heat work at which your clay body matures.  This is done to avoid problems with 1) under firing the clay body (not vitrified, remains porous) as mentioned in other responses, and 2) over firing the clay body (bloating, slumping, melting). As glazes suffer from their own sets of defects when under and over fired, you need to use a glaze that correspondingly works in the firing range at which your clay body matures. 



#89175 " What Makes A Teabowl A Chawan" << John Baymore's N C E...

Posted by S. Dean on 19 July 2015 - 06:04 PM

I like the concept that there is room for creativity within the boundaries of structure.   Very much enjoyed the power point and how actual tea bowls morphed into drawings of the different shapes.  Well done and a well spent half hour.



#89162 Square's Capital Lending Program

Posted by S. Dean on 19 July 2015 - 12:08 PM



Good points/analysis. I was not trying to advocate one way or another, just provide some additional information so people can make a more informed decision/do their own due diligence.  


Like you I can remember when interest rates/cost of capital was not at the record lows we've had the last few years.  I worked for a publicly traded start up company that was in a high growth mode acquiring real estate assets with long term revenue streams.   Back in 2000 our cost of capital was 12~13% and these notes were secured by assets required to be held in bankruptcy remote special purpose entities.  Another company that I worked for from 2010-2012 had venture capital investors that were seeking double digit returns on investment for money loaned in 2008.  


I too suspect that Square's program is at a lower rate than a credit card cash advance on a credit card.  Ultimately, it is another lending option.  If a borrower can qualify for a better deal, then take it.  



#89138 Square's Capital Lending Program

Posted by S. Dean on 19 July 2015 - 05:40 AM

^ It looks absolutely horrible.   If you get an advance of $4500, you pay 13% of card sales, paying back $5152.    Apparently they just automatically deduct 13% of your card sales until you have paid it back.  So I read it wrong.   $652 in interest.    So ... eeeek 14.5% interest.  I'm surprised they are doing this.



Dirt Roads,


The cost for this loan is a fixed fee not an annual interest rate, with the fee being the same whether you pay off the loan on day 1 or in 2 years.  The fee is typically between 10-14% of what you borrow.  Square then deducts a percentage (also 10-14%) from each subsequent credit card transaction until the loan and fee are paid in full. 


While in theory, it could take you 2 or more years to pay this back, per this article the pay back period is typically 10 months. 

http://www.techrepub...square-capital/  In that case, the effective cost of borrowing is at an annualized interest rate that is even higher than what you calculated. 


Square only makes this program available to certain customers - i.e., they run the analytics and know your credit card transaction history/how fast you will likely pay back the $.


Advantages seem to be ease/speed of getting a loan for businesses that cannot otherwise qualify for typical financing.  Capital funding, if you can get it, is always very expensive for higher risk borrowers.  


In my mind, some additional things to ponder for small businesses are:

1. Is your card set up through a business entity with limited liability (LLC, S-corp, C-corp, etc) or is the account in your individual name?

2. Does Square require a personal guarantee for the loan even if the answer to question 1 is that the borrower is a business with limited liability?

3. As the article says, you better know your sales margin.

4. What's in the fine print of the loan agreement?