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Mark C.

Member Since 09 Jan 2012
Offline Last Active Today, 12:13 AM

#65954 Competition?

Posted by Mark C. on 10 September 2014 - 05:03 PM

Only one local potter who maybe is a competetitor and only at my two local shows as we share the the same pie of customers

It's direct

he is a friend and I have zero issues with it-our work is very different but both are funtional


At all other shows I never even look at others work much yet alone pricing-I do not care what they sell it for these days.I stopping looking at  others pricing about 20 years ago . 

I think its good to have a choice for the public.

My whole model is reasonable pricing for great snappy glazes on forms that function well.I want to sell in volumes as I go a LONG ways to market so I need to sell a lot. I want the customer to be able to buy the pots and return next year foir more. They remember me and always come back. I will add my prices are slowly edging up as my production and volume drops.So far I have not hit the (its to expensive for me price points)

I have always had a strong sense of the transaction of selling my work needs to work for both parties-if its to high price then its not working as I sell less and do not return-if its to cheap I run out.Its always a balance-good value works for me.





never felt any competetion mostly as I always come thru steady with product-others tend to flake.



#65708 What Is Your Favorite Source Of Information? You Tubes, Magazines, Internet,...

Posted by Mark C. on 06 September 2014 - 03:59 PM

School of hard knocks.

#65567 Is Is Possible To Calcine Your Own Kaolin?

Posted by Mark C. on 03 September 2014 - 05:32 PM

I have a great cake recipe that uses 30% calcined EPK

the rest is high fire clay and finished with sprinkeled bakers flour then painted with colorants

Bake at 2380 for 12 hours- cool 18 hours

serve warm


#65503 Is Is Possible To Calcine Your Own Kaolin?

Posted by Mark C. on 02 September 2014 - 05:20 PM

The bowl can be green or whatever form you fire it it can be greenware.


#65366 Trouble With Dried Out Glaze

Posted by Mark C. on 29 August 2014 - 10:49 PM

The cheap thrift store blenders are one of my favorite shop items.

They work great for zinc and other stubborn materials like your glaze.


#65232 Cost Of Replacing Elements

Posted by Mark C. on 27 August 2014 - 03:47 PM

I just plugged in my 1227 specs to Skutts web site and each element was $50

Labor cost is whatever I want to pay myself?Thats my own answer for my own kiln.

I pasted the element page for my model below.

looks like 300$ for the whole set of 6.

$135 seems steep?


Neil will answer this one for you as far as labor


Parts Listing for KM-1227 240V/1PH Elements 4 1370 1370_web.jpg 280,1227 CENTER ELEMENT/240 $50.00 2 1368 1368_web.jpg 280,1227 TOP & BTM ELEM/240V $50.00

#64952 Do You Donate Your Work For A Worthy Cause?

Posted by Mark C. on 23 August 2014 - 11:25 AM

Never in all my years has any pottery gift (donation) come back as a sale due to promotion.Yes its mentioned ether in print or while being sold but all I get is a advertising right off.

One needs to draw a line early as this will get out of hand fast

Like TRJ said he does not supports the womens golf assosication and draws a line at the tee off-I find after 10 or so requests I get teed off myself.

I used to do the bowls are all empty - but now I let others make the bowls as this is such a widespread cause now they get more than they can use as everyone makes them around here-especially our local art center.

I have my own personal favorites-and I support those as they what I care about.I also volunteer at a few events every year.


#64897 Do You Donate Your Work For A Worthy Cause?

Posted by Mark C. on 22 August 2014 - 10:08 AM

OK this is a hot topic for me-I just gave a pot yesterday

I get asked via letters and phone calls e-mails for about 15-20 causes per year

I used to give to way to many now its just the ones I care about (my regulars) and a few others.Totaling about 6 now.

Most send nice notes as follow up on the work.

I now say I have reached my limit for the year -1st call 1st served.

The Zoo keepers of America just mailed me a letter asking about pots for fund raising for our local zoo.I reycled it -I am not a lock up the animals fan.


I read a read a great piece on the reasons for not doing this and will look for it-some reasons I recall are it dilutes your works value and makes auctioning at low value change ones perception of work.


One thing is constant the requests keep rolling in.

I feel like telling them ask a bank  for a donation they have the money-why bother an artist


TJR I'll send the greater ball mill association of North America your way for donations now that I know your the man for the spinning jar thing.



One last note-you only get the value of the material for a tax right off unless you give them a card and call it advertising as they print a list of stuff-then you get full value


#64882 Loafers Glory

Posted by Mark C. on 22 August 2014 - 12:40 AM

I'm confuzed why glorify loafers? I thought loafers do not deserve the glory?

Things are different back east.


#64825 New Hampshire Institute Of Art Anagama Build - Images

Posted by Mark C. on 20 August 2014 - 11:27 PM

The progress is super-the kiln shed to the foundation the stainless flashing and the kiln itself. I have no idea what these kids pay for this class but its a steal no matter the cost.This baby is really looking clean

How often will this kiln get used?

Great job.Thanks for keeping us in the loop.


#64824 Undersides Of Shelves Glossing, Blistering And Flaking.

Posted by Mark C. on 20 August 2014 - 11:22 PM

This is some type of coating as best as I can tell-

looks like a thick layer of washes.


(I thought kiln shelves were a solid thing, not an outer and inner layer but I also thought there was only one type of shelf till a few months ago. )

Shelves come in many different types and most here on this forum ask about their electric ones as one type-a 1/2 inch mullite with several sides that fit electric kilns

But wait theres more than one type-really


Mullites are cheap and thats what most use in electrics I have found

But their are many types and many thicknesses
They come in hollow core coralites (lighter stronger) which are like honeycomb insides that are hollow.
These also come in standard 12x24 or larger sizes and thickness for higher temps
There are the old standard silicon carbides which where the best when I came into ceramics 3/4 inch was the thing back in the day
Then came the dry pressed high alumina English shelves that I replaced all my older warped siclicon carbides with mine where all 1 inch and warped way less at cone 11 they weigh 30#s each.
Then came the recyristalized silicon advancers that NEVER warp or change and are just over 1/4 inch thick and a 12x24 wieghs 9#s
then the cheaper knock offs from China-I have one on kiln floor thats warped and cracked right now.These are not the same as advancers really.
So when you talk about shelves everyone its best to say what kind you are talking about?
Now as for Babs she is in Australia and I have no idea about that material over there (I have visited Aus but saw zero shelves but did do the Sidney Bridge climb 10 years ago) but have a strong sense its Mullite and there are mullite all the way through except for that coating someone applied and is now peeling off.

#64785 Wet Vs Dry Measurement

Posted by Mark C. on 20 August 2014 - 02:49 PM

(Mark; I can't believe you don't have a formula for "8 inches left in a five gallon bucket=.)


I do have a formula its called I need to make another bucket of glaze as I only have 8 inches worth.


#64743 Wet Vs Dry Measurement

Posted by Mark C. on 19 August 2014 - 07:46 PM

I have a cone 6 glaze that I've been using for a few years. I would like to see what it is like with some oxides added for different colors. Is there a way to convert ; say 4% R.I. dry to be added to part of the few gallons of base I have wet?

If its a new batch and you know whats in there dry (wieght wise) yes you can do it . If its a bucket that you have no idea about what you have used say already then its a guess at best.


#64541 How Do I Glaze Fire Spoons And Ladles?

Posted by Mark C. on 16 August 2014 - 12:19 AM

Back when I made a ladel with every soup tureen I would wax a small spot on bottom (touch spot( on spoon end and one on handle end.

Then place that spot on a small piece of soft brick. after firing grind off any rough edges.These where cone 10 and about a foot long.


#64465 Very Powerful Sales Tool

Posted by Mark C. on 14 August 2014 - 07:42 PM

I was at a show the 1st weekend of August which is near Canada but in US.

One of my customers from over the border had picked out a small pot but was short the cash and had forgot here check book.Her friend had her visa card and was to shed her later that night. I wrapped up the pot and wrote her a I owe you an back of card.

Check came yesterday and she wrote it for the difference of currencies so I did not loose any money. She wrote me a very nice note about trusting her which no one seems to do anymore.

When I do this I have a customer for life. You need to feel the situation out as its not for every forgotten purse.But when its right its very solid.