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Mark C.

Member Since 09 Jan 2012
Offline Last Active Today, 01:39 AM

Topics I've Started

Skutt 1227 Band Snaps Loose During Recent Bisque-Gerrrr

19 November 2014 - 08:43 PM

OK bashing brands is not what I'm known for but.
On my 1227 the band which is now a rusting mess as well as all the steel parts (handle-snap latches and bands) came apart on last bisque. This kiln has only been used for bisque and on a good year maybe 6 bisques total ( I use my gas kilns for most bisquing).Its from the mid 90's
This year I have a whopping 7 fires on it so far and the middle band came apart on the spot wields on the tensioning bands-exactly like my one of my smaller skutts did a decade ago. The only difference is my two older skutts have no rust on the stainless steel bands-it appears the new bands are really a very poor grade of stainless. Spot wields just are the wrong thing to do on kiln jackets..I should mention that the older skutts I own have spotless bands as the stainless is a much better quality 
I have only gone to cone 08 in this kiln and have little use on it over the two decades. I live 7 miles from the sea so its not that either.
I'm going to screw this together with quality stainless marine screws before next fire (holiday season is NOW)-just another nail in my reason to buy another brand of kiln for me.
If you are in the kiln market check for spot wields and ask about how stainless is the stainless.
Rant over-
I'm dreaming of an L&L
one last note -have you noticed it always all happens at once

Glaze Fires Are Waiting To Open

08 November 2014 - 01:28 AM

Well it,s smack dab in the middle of x-mas production season.I fired two glaze loads before flying to Santa Barbara for my niece,s wedding. They are slow cooling for 5 days until I get back in a few days.
I,m hoping for zero large earthquakes which can topple my 35cubic car kiln load as well as the small 12 cubic updraft kiln load.
I,m starting to wonder about how they will look.hoping for the best.

Calcining Epk Or Whatever You Need

18 October 2014 - 08:58 PM

I was doing my every 4-5 year wash job and I was loading up some bowls with epk for calcining for my wash formula.

Heres how I do it in some green bowls as well as one cracked bisqued one I use just for this purpose .

You can use whatever form you have as it all just comes out and after you blow or towel out the form its ready to glaze.


Small Stuff Sells-This One Sweet Dish Is From Oldlady

18 October 2014 - 08:41 PM

I still am not easy with calling her Oldlady but she insists it seems.

Here is a dish she sent me next to a dime as well as a ruler. its one sweet dragonfly dish she sells for 7$.Its a perfect stuffer size when loading.

These smaller items add up fast-my guess is she press molds a image into the clay form but she can explain.

Its an green Oribe glaze.


Very Strange Bisque Fire-Or How To Wash And Fire Advancers

18 October 2014 - 08:36 PM

Every 4-5 years I grind old wash on about 2/3 of my advancer shelves-I grind tops and bottoms these are 12x24 .At this time I do about 1/2 my posts as well on ends as they like to stick to advancers as does anything mullite made. I also do all mt 1/4 and 1/2 and 3/4 nerds for adding a bit during the stacking.This is a big job and I like to do it when its still warm and sunny before winter. So past few days between rains I got a chance to do it. Mask eye and ear protection a must. I grind the backs to smooth all post marks off.

I then flip them and grind off the wash -sweep the dust and get them hot in sun before paint rolling with roller two coats and let it dry between coats. Then scrap the edges with a scraper  so they are clean. I then stack all into a bisque fire and ver slowly fire this as advancers will blow up if you have them wet and go to fast. I like to do this over a few days-giving them a bit of heat then off and let them sit -then on etc. If I bisque them carefully after the wet wash is dry then I can glaze fire them without worry as to rate of climb so they do not blow up as they are all dry already.

All this is to keep my porcelain from plucking or ticking to the raw advancers .These shelves are the best I have ever had and as I have over 10,ooo into them I take care of them. By now they are actually are free as they have paid for themselves many times over in space savings. I have over 50 of them.

This bisque is almost full-just waiting for some pots to dry for the top. I have a bunch of bisque ware so the next load will be full.

I like a grinding cup on my Milwaukee verbal speed grinder as well as a smaller 4 inch Makita for the light duty edges etc.

This job is a killer and demands a shower afterwards.

I'll get this fired in a few days now.This work pays off for many years in the future and is part of my cycle as a potter. Over the years the shelves have changed materials many times but now these will last as long as me and be passed on to another potter. They are made in an electric arc furnace in a nitrogen enriched environment with no oxygen -just an amazing process.

My wash formula is 1/2 alumina Hydrate 1/4 calcined EPK 1/4 EPK mixed like thick cream.

This amount of shelves are for two kilns.