I have a first draft of my de airing conversion operational. I threaded a half inch nipple into the barrel immediately after the blades. It extends about 3/8 of an inch in the barrel. On the leeward side to the clay travel path it is carved back about a quarter of an inch. On top of the nipple is bolted the lid to a peanut butter jar. A second hole and fittings pass a quarter-inch plastic tube from my $50 harbor freight vacuum pump to the bottom of the jar. For a vacuum chamber, the peanut butter jar is screwed into the lid upside down. On initial tests, this all seems to work pretty well. I'm sure Rube would approve. Pictures are attached.
This thing has caught my interest. Attached is a pdf of the seminal research on International Art English, IAE. I think it is something that artists, not just art critics, need to speak... If you want to talk to win the favor of the gatekeepers of the art world.
Like many folks in pottery, my hands were chapped and cracked while my fingernails were constantly tearing.
I talked to my dermatologist about this. He made two very effective recommendations that I want to pass on.
1. Curel hand cream.. This stuff is unlike anything else I have tried. When you put it on it has the same oily feel of most hand creams. After a few minutes it is absorbed into your skin with no sense of oiliness left. I put a small dab on before I go into studio then again when I wash up. It has made a huge difference in my skin. You can get the stuff for about $12.00 for 16 oz at Walmart or Walgreens
2. Daily dose of Biotin. I take 1000mg. It takes about 4 month to see the difference,... for your fingernails to grow out. At that point, the difference is dramatic. No more torn or broken fingernails. You can get this stuff cheap on Amazon or eBay.
Attached are some more pictures of the slab roller. They're pretty self-explanatory.
The strap metal is 1 1/2" by 1/8" and 1 by 1/8"
Turning a wing bolts adjusts the thickness of the slab.
The cord is nylon clothes line.
In the stirrup picture you will see 2 stirrups. I usually only use the bottom one but if I'm pulling a very long slab I will have to also step step on the higher one.
One thing that may not be clear from the pictures is that the top of the bungee hooks into a loop in the top of the rope so that it pulls down and thus pulls the back sheet of canvass up when you remove your foot.
The 17" wide rollers are from a junked package moving conveyor that the local post office scrapped and it ended up in at my scrap metal recycling source. They have PVC tube slipped over them and glued to make them a little larger.
The scrap metal and rollers were purchased at $0.35 a pound and weigh about 10 pounds total
The canvas was about $10 and there were assorted bolts and nuts for about $4.
Judy asked if different canvasses could be swapped out. If you put hooks vs just tieing the canvas to the rope, it would work well..
The basic idea of this roller could be adapted in many ways and sizes.
I tried Peters drop lid making technique. I could never get the clay centered enough on the hump mold.. So I extended the idea a bit. I put three small countersink bolts from the bottom of a plastic bat,. 1 on center and 2 of them about 1.5 inches out from center. Then I made a series of hump molds on top of that bat (so I was sure the pin holes were lined up), similar to Peter's, for different size lids.
You can put a slab of clay over it or just a lump on top to center and shape.
This gadget makes very thin, even lids quickly. The thing I like best is that you can add knobs, and decoration in the same operation.
attached is a picture of a technique that I use that seems very secure.
I use heavy music wire with an 80° bend on each hand which slips into small holes in the plate. These holes can be very small and less than an eighth of an inch deep works fine. Just make sure you bend the ends of the wire so that the weight is resting on the point at the end of the wire. When I plan ahead, I put these holes in the greenware..Sometimes I forget. Then I to use a small diamond drill To make them.
Thank you for some very helpful and creative strategies.. I'm going to give them a try.
I wrote Sarah and this is what she said
"I leave the exterior of the pieces in their natural colour and just spray the colour onto the interior of the bisq pieces very carefully. Any overspray I clean off by hand. I don't use glaze but hand mixed terra sig colours; definition is much harder to achieve with glaze."
Attached is a picture of a cheap in "envirovent" that I built for my km 1227 Skutt. It slides underneath the kiln and the little spring pushes it up against the bottom of the kiln to form a seal. Enough cool air leaks around this interface to keep the exhaust gases cool. I use the rheostat to control how much suction it produces. The whole thing cost about $40 With all new parts from the hardware store.,
I'm not sure how much suction I really need but I tested by holding a butane barbecue lighter flame above a quarter inch diameter hole in the lid.(Courtesy of the prior owner of the kiln). If the flame is strongly pulled into the whole I assume that's enough suction, but I'm not sure. Advice on this point would be appreciated.
for throwing, I use a five wheeled secretary chair that has a small springy back. I have a stiff wire coming forward from the frame that has a loop on it. I made a stiff wire hook on the front of my wheel frame.
When I'm centering and need to have my rear planted solidly, I hook the wire on my chair to the hook on the front of my wheel. At all other times, I unhook my chair from the wheel.
This allows me to to roll around short distances to grab tools etc. The flexible back of the secretary chair gives me support in a number of positions without restricting my movement.