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  2. yes , pressure washer , all kinds of chemicals and a scrubby on a broom stick... took for ever, gotta do what ya gotta do LOL
  3. Pine around here is a no no,LOL knowone will cut it - I did see some folks using it along with other woods and their pots were nice.. .
  4. Today
  5. As Neil said, different clay body = different look. Most of the pic's on Amaco's website, and the sample boards you'll see in a store, are done with a light buff clay (I think Amaco's # 46 Buff Stoneware). How many coats are you applying ? The number and thickness of coats can make a big difference in the results with any glaze, and the PC series is no different- especially when you're layering. It might be that you need to adjust the number and/or thickness of coats applied. (Two coats of base color & two coats of top color will give different results than two base & three top or three base & two top, etc.) Some of the examples on Amaco's website clearly state how many coats of each was applied - others do not. I've tried at-least a dozen different PC glazes, in various combinations, on Standard # 112 Speckled Brown. Some I really like, some are just "OK", and others I've said "won't do that again" - but very few have come out looking anywhere close to the sample pic's.
  6. Yesterday
  7. At the high temps of wood kilns soot/creosote is not an issue. It all burns away, no matter how much sap is in the wood. You will see differences in the color of the ash from wood to wood, but dark or light would be more from what type of kiln you have and how you fire it- how much air flow you have. When I was wood firing in grad school we only used softwoods, because that's what we had available to us out west. Lots of pine, and even willow (which is a bear to split, and very difficult to get much heat from).
  8. White Oak, Maple, Blue Beech aka Ironwood,Ash... if i were to fire a wood kiln those woods would be used.. all are tight grain, low sap, long burning and you will use less of those woods compared to any soft wood.. soft woods like pine will darken your pots due to the high sap content.. the soot produced by pine is the nastiest and hardest to clean off of a glass door.. i scrubbed my grand parents for hours trying to get it off, last time they ever burnt Pine.. so no matter what stage your in its going to stick to your pots,its in the air as it burns... i think i would want the air as clean as possible..
  9. Is it that you don't like the way the speckles look in the glaze, or that the glazes themselves aren't looking good on the speckled body- like the colors aren't as nice? Glazes will look different on different clay bodies, regardless of the speckles. The same glaze can even look totally different on two different white stoneware bodies.
  10. I use this method to fire pots upside down. Some of my planters are shaped like a trumpet bell. They would take up a lot of room if they were all fired rim to rim. By firing some upside down, they stack closely together. I use a soft brick biscuit cut to 1/4" or so thick, round and close to the size of the bottom on an appropriate kiln post. This is secure enough for a cone 10 firing. Get some interesting drips running up to the rim rather than down to the foot. In the case of the drum, I'd leave an unglazed ring at the inside of the neck and then size a biscuit to fit that space. Sometimes they stick a little, but can be knocked free with no damage.
  11. Hello everyone, I find your site tremendously insightful and factual, and this is my first post here. I'm a fairly proficient handbuilder and sculptor but have never worked in porcelain. I need to know whether these lentil-shaped hollow beads will fall flat in the highfire glaze firing, with or without glaze. They are slightly larger than a quarter in diameter, and thickness varies from 11 to 13 mm. A classmate at community college handbuilding class gave me the porcelain clay because I just wanted to see whether I prefer it for my hollow beads. They all have holes, not showing in pic. My concern stems from the fact that I had read that walls can collapse, in porcelain, if not exceeding 30 degrees angle. I did do a LOT of searching and reading, but could not find an answer. Photo shows the bisqued hollow porcelain beads in the foreground, and in background are beads from my same molds, in my usual stoneware clay. I do have Kanthal wire which I usually use in my own, small, low-fire kiln but I'm sure the kiln tech at the college (with a vast volume of stoneware and porcelain pieces to fire) will not be game to be bothered with my little experiment so my intent is to just have her fire them on the shelf, unglazed, to maturity ... and then I will decorate them by other means, if I choose, after seeing the result (hoping to get some translucency?) So, in summing up ... do you think these little lentils will collapse and go flat when fired to the porcelain clay's maturity? I believe it is Cone 6. Thank you for any input!
  12. Your recycle is the combination of two bodies, so I wouldn't expect it to behave like either of the individual bodes.
  13. Thanks for the input. I don't add anything at all to the recycle, except the 2 clays that I work with. I don't use any of the additives Liam was suggesting. Min's advice pretty much sums up my conclusions. I like the recycle for large pots that I'm going to wire off anyway. There must not be any ball clay in the Soldate 60. The reason I think this is that paper slip made from that clay never goes funky. Paper slip from Amador or the recycle will get black and stinky. Got to be the organics in the ball clay, yeah? Maybe the recycle doesn't have enough of the ball clay from the Amador and enough of whatever magic the Soldate has either.
  14. Thank you Liam, glad to hear I can mimic the speckled clay with manganese. Of course, test, test, test. I have about a dozen pieces bisqued to 06. Wondering if I can brush on white underglazes & then brush on Amaco glazes to get the same or similar look of glazes on B Mix. Is this something that some of you know won’t work, or should I do some tests? And if I try that, should I layer glazes on right after underglazes dry & fire, or should I add underglaze, bisque again then add glaze & fire? Maybe I should have stayed quiet as I’ve done for 4 years.
  15. You can add granular manganese or granular ilmenite to a white slip or white underglaze to mimic a speckled look. I'm sorry but I don't use potters choice glazes so I don't have any combinations I can suggest, I think @JohnnyK was saying he uses them though
  16. Liam & Johnny, thank you both for the suggestions. I think I’ll try both & decide what I like best. They both sound like good options. I bought a speckled underglaze a few years ago that I think would have worked great, but think it has been discontinued. Does anyone know of a speckled underglaze or how one might add something to an underglaze to make it look like speckled clay? Liam, if you are willing to share PC layering on B Mix, that would be great, thank you. Betty
  17. Welcome to the forums, Betty. Take Liam's suggestion of using a white slip, which may work, or you can use B-Mix, and on the foot and bottom of the pot, take a black or brown underglaze on a toothbrush or other stiff brush and finger stroke to get the spatter that you want. It will take a little practice to get the spatter pattern you like, but then you can use the PC glazes on the B-Mix to come up with some good outcomes. Look at my album to get an idea of some of what I've done. I've been throwing B-Mix ^5 and using PC layered glazes for a number of years and coming up with some really nice combos which I would be happy to share if you'd like. Good Luck... JohnnyK
  18. Have you tried using a white slip over areas you don't want to be speckled? That might be an option, it may be just enough to stop the bleed through, or maybe enough to even make the glaze act more like it's on bmix. An alternative would be to use bmix and paint the areas you want speckled with a speckled slip
  19. I've gotta ask, but do you ever get any soluble salts in your reclaim? Like for instance a flocculated or deflocculated decorating slip, sodium silicate from doing crackle surface, Epsom salts in your throwing water, water softener in your throwing water, magic water from joining pieces, etc. Because it kind of sounds like you have some sort of flocculant changing the chemistry to me.
  20. I can't throw, too late to learn, too many injuries, too much pain, too little desire. BUT, I did learn to centre, and the best thing I ever did was to close my eyes, and just relax. Don't fight, just feel.
  21. It sounds like the properties of your recycled clay are contradictory. The rough edges of rolled out clay indicate a short body however taking longer to release from the plaster seems like there is an excess of ball clay (or other small particle fines) in the recycled clay than the original two bodies it's made from which wouldn't happen unless you add more than what was originally in the two bodies. What happens if you wire off the pots made from the recycled clay? I know this isn't necessary with hydrocal batts but might be a simple solution. I brought up my issue simply to illustrate that not all bodies pug the same.
  22. And, don't forget, not all "hardwoods" are born equal. Some give out more heat than others. I won't burn English Oak in my wood burner, even if it's free. I can get warmer by running up and down the stairs than by sitting in front of an Oak fire!
  23. If it still has some moisture in it, carve it out of the pot with a loop tool. One made with a flat blade, not a wire one. Let it dry thoroughly, then re-wet as @liambesawsays.
  24. Mark, your work sounds a lot like mine. I have texture sprig attachments, added feet, joinery and lots of (paper) slip work. Some pieces as big as 25lbs wet. What I have found most effective is a substantial time under plastic to equalize the moisture before drying. Then it dries under bath towels. The final step is a couple of days in the sun. Using that, this is my bisque schedule. 40 degrees per hour to 120 hold 1 hour 80 degrees per hour to 200 hold 1 hour 250 degrees per hour to 1000 no hold 300 degree per hour to 1823 (cone 06) It's 5 hours from start to closing the lid (propped open about 3" for burn out) Very close to 10 hours complete. I don't have breakage with this routine unless I miss guess how long a piece is in any phase. It seems to me this is the best compromise between too slow and too fast.
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