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  2. Etsy's suitability is largely related to scale, and the level of professional involvement you want to engage in. I fully agree that Etsy isn't a good choice to stay with if you're wanting to build a business that pays you an actual wage or salary. It's a poor choice to build a brand on. It is however an inexpensive place to start out on, learn with and eventually transition off of, or to have a part time presence on. Keep in mind the OP is a retiree. I'd be giving different advice to a 20 or 30 something just starting their business. Etsy is a tool, like a hammer. It's great if you need to pound some nails, but not the best for driving screws.
  3. Hey Mark, I did contact Bailey and the main take away was keeping in mind that the barrel has to be reloaded frequently for tile so there's that. I also wonder how fast it is. I haven't found a video yet and some air powered things such as jacks move pretty slowly if there's resistance and clay extruding is going to offer a lot of resistance. If you were buying this for health reasons that wouldn't matter but if speed is an issue then it makes it a lot slower than the hand lever one or the one called big blue from North Star that has a wheel. I'm coming to the conclusion that this isn't the answer for me.
  4. Ya know you have two problems, process and business. I would look for slip casting classes. While pottery classes for folks working in ceramics is a good thing it sounds like this is a slip cast business so a pottery class may have very negligible value if you are planning to keep this business going as is and may well just get you all confused about it all. You are not trying to decide on the direction to go with pottery, you want to know how to use the stuff you have. A generic pottery class would be fun and certainly dial you in on working with clay forms but slip casting is not the same thing and the class may not even cover it at all or just clip past it quickly and running electric kilns may also not be covered in any kind of depth. If I were you I would go on an information blitz, watching every you tube video I could find on slip casting and order any books you can find on amazon. You already have all the equipment so using the that information you should be able to get going. Sometimes it is good to just go at it. If she has not fired those kilns in a very long time it might make sense to have a kiln person or at least an electrician check them out for safety before you start using them. Has the business been running right up until now? I mean are clients expecting delivery of products or is just just a case where she had run this business in the past so all of the equipment is still there? You mentioned a Christmas tree mold but it's mid October so unless you are planning to man a booth at some Xmas shows Xmas buying by businesses I think is long over unless she has some orders already. Good luck!
  5. Today
  6. I have seen that bailey extruder at a studio near SF but have no info on its use.I would call Bailey and talk story.
  7. (Would there be any difference between using this and a slip made from the white stoneware clay?) slip made from the same clay you are using fits the body perfectly and will always be the best and cuase the least issues.
  8. Thanks guys! Yeah the presses are great but not so much for field tile. We are adding a small arbor one this week to get away from the mallet pressing. For field tile I use a flip over air release mold for 4" and get about 20 an hour when everything is said and done and they are ready to bisque. To do 6" inch one that way I would have to buy another frame and just find I am not really interested in continuing using molds (even air release) for field tiles. There are a number of pretty expensive solutions (Baily's, RAM and Peter Pugger all sell several) but not going there either. Just a small shop and buying one of these expensive options will sap so much profit out of things for so long into the future that just not interested. They also kind of diminish the hand made aspect of selling an expensive are tile installation. It is part of the backstory so getting too mechanized I think does matter. This week I am going back to the slab roller for all sizes and really eval that again. I have some plunger type clay cutters for 4" & 6" tiles and I am going to see what my finished hourly output is. If I could get it closer to 50 tiles an hour working at a normal steady pace I would be really happy.
  9. Ya know that might be right on but then you are driving your customers to a large platform with lots and lots of cheap imported machine alternatives to what you sell. I can't really wrap my head around that being a good thing to do. I did set up a store last year one rainy Sunday with bank accounts and such and a few products loaded and a link from my site to it but having trouble getting motivated to load more. Everyone seems to talk about a perceived value of having a store there but no one these days seems to ever talk about making any money from it. Lee if you're wondering it really is just a few hours or less process to get it all setup. Since you sell on your regular site you can just use the same pictures and blurps. They do charge though per product so to have 40-50 items up is like paying for another website. edit: when I say no one and everybody I am talking about potters. I get that a bunch of people make money on etsy.
  10. Hi, thanks everyone. In answer to your questions: 1. Firing to 1240 2. Oxidation in electric kiln 3. G72150 multi-purpose stoneware transparent glaze, firing range 1200 - 1290 4a. I first used Mason Peacock 6266 at 8% (with the china clay/ ball clay slip - oh, also with a little feldspar potash, recommended by the supplier) This resulted in a very dark blue - could I rectify this by just diluting it with more of the ball/china/little bit of potash clay slip? 4b. Then I used Mason Deep Turquoise 6315 at 8% (with the more complicated slip) I was advised to add the feldspar potash and the silica by the supplier that I bought the stains from, but it resulted in a very washed out anaemic blue instead of the deep turquoise. I imagine I should just forget about the complicated slip? Am I still ok using the ball clay/china clay/little bit of potash slip with the stoneware (I have mixed up quite a bit)? Would there be any difference between using this and a slip made from the white stoneware clay? I'm after a pure colour, as shown on the Mason stains chart. Thanks again!
  11. Sorry, Just saw this post but I believe negatives are 90, so 9010. A copy of an old Bartlett manual below. You can get a fresh one from the Bartlett control site if necessary.
  12. I.m a motivated high funtioning individual I have been told.. It helps with a production pottery business as well I have found out.
  13. This happened to me once. I had overstretched an element a little, and it came drooping out on the first firing just like yours. It was still flexible enough to nudge it back into place. It looked a little wonky just like yours, but from then on it had a normal life span.
  14. thanks for the good words. I did put the elements back in the channels. Is the one I have a close up of going to be a problem since it's wonky? I did the paper test and all elements were firing. Whew! I really appreciate your help. Roberta
  15. Thanks all. Going to go out to the shop after dinner and try to maneuver them back into place. Seriously, what was I thinking?? I have changed those elements 7 times! grrrr.
  16. Just checking....the proper setting to shut the temp down 10 degrees lower is 9910, correct?
  17. If can't get into groove, pin the in a few places where they droop ..wire, right stuff of course, staples into brick work..lessens the droop into the future. Nice to read that your task won't be so onerous.
  18. Thanks Neil for the validation. I will occasionally run a Cone 5, but otherwise, simply 6. I just checked my records and on June 30th I ran cone 5. The program states 2165 F temp, and the actual was 2177 F. I didn't leave any comments on the witness cones, so I assume nothing dramatic showed, but isn't there a 30 degree window between cone differences? So I should at least measure again, but maybe offset cones for Cone 5 as well. Thanks for the input. T
  19. Yes! thanks Tyler! A chemist friend of a friend of family bounced back that it's more likely from iron. Fascinating stuff. Nevertheless, I haven't been able to recreate it under other lower temperature circumstances. Seems the 1500-1600F range is important. Also, I checked it a day after passing through the coffee filter and it's dropped out on it's own. Still at 12+pH, it's now a very clear slight yellow w/ what could be rust or Cu on the bottom. Photos below of the same jar 24 hours apart.
  20. Yesterday
  21. Jam those miscreants back into shape. My kiln has some droopers courtesy of the previous owner, they don't affect the firings so much, but they sure are ugly. I've tried torching and pinning them but they're just so noncompliant that I have given up. Luckily I have a set of brand new elements, I'm just waiting to install them. I have fired my kiln 41 times since I got it and the dang elements are still more than capable of reaching cone 6 in record time. Come on kiln, let's get along! I think Ill be replacing the thermocouple before the elements, seeing as how I had a shelf collapse last night and it bent the TC at a 90 degree angle. But it still is registering the temperature correctly too, so who knows. Kiln maintenance, the untold harrows of being a self sufficient Potter.
  22. Holy cow mark, you never stop do you? I spent this weekend building a work table / fume hood for my work with soluble salts and lustres. Sulphur, and mercaptans (thiols) are part of synthesizing a lustre overglaze and these are some of the smelliest compounds on earth. I did an open air run of some palladium mercaptan a few weeks ago and you could smell it from blocks away. I decided instead of subjecting my neighborhood to a somewhat regular barrage of rotting smells that I'd go ahead and do it proper. A 350 cu ft per minute fan pulled through an activated carbon filter rated to match. It won't get rid of the smell entirely but will trap a lot of it. At least that's the hope. This combined with an acid gas face mask will hopefully keep me better protected from hydrogen sulfide and other byproducts that are unhealthy to breathe as well. I know it's pretty janky as far as lab equipment is concerned but it actually works so I consider it a win!
  23. With L&L elements, they must be seated into the corners when you install them. They ship the elements slightly short, so that means either putting them into the corners so they're springy and under tension, or stretching them further so they lay into the corners without any tension. Personally, I prefer the latter. With new kilns they tend to hold under tension just fine, but with older kilns where everything has shifted a bit it's easier to have them lay into the corners without tension. As for your predicament, they should still be quite flexible and stretchy after only one firing, so you should be able to get them into the corners without breaking them. If you have to torch them, do so, but I don't think you'll need to. A little bending here and there with needle nose pliers, and possibly crimping the coils back together where it's drooped a lot and you should be fine.
  24. You may have to take up some slack elsewhere so judiciously anywhere you heat it red hot it will bend like butter. Some of those areas look to be out so much that if you collapsed them right at that point all the coils would then be touching. Try and find locations that are stretched a little excessively and you should be able to gain som room in these other other areas to help you put these back in without coils touching the adjacent coil. Your elements are very likely flexible enough that you can gingerly remove a foot or two to work on. Ultimately you will need enough room to shrink the sections back in with the torch. You can try heating areas of the elements that are stretched a bit more while in the channel and often these areas will shrink when you do this providing room for you to then heat the crawled areas and place them in more easily. Patience and good luck! I once put a kiln back together where nearly all the elements had crawled out nearly everywhere. It took time, but it ended up pretty perfect and is still firing today.
  25. I have a colleague who puts his scrap and trimmings in a five gallon bucket with a tad of water. When the bucket is full he pours the slurry into a canvas water bags (purchased from a supply house on the internet) to dry his recycle. Each bag holds about 60 pounds of wet clay and sits on an open slat bench. Dries in a few days to throwing stiffness (unless it rains for a few days). He slam wedges his clay just before using. Wash the bag with bleach after each batch to prevent the canvas from deterioration. The simplest system I have encountered. LT
  26. back in 1971 I was a caretaker on a religious estate.I had a pottery set up in a cabin and I mixed clay every morning in the basement of the mansion. There was an abandoned greenhouse with lots of earthenware flowerpots. I lined the pots with a little piece of newspaper over the drain hole and cheese cloth inside the whole pot. I had shelves of ware boards facing the boiler lined with these flower pots. The would dry to workable consistency in 3 days.I just kept a steady pipeline of clay coming from these flower pot. My slop was in a 50 gallon garbage can. This method makes the most plastic clay. - Slop too workable. I bought a used Peter Pugger around 1980. It was badly rusted with big chips of rust coming out in the clay. They went to stainless. Today I have an old Soldner mixer formerly belonging to Tom Coleman, then his apprentice. I got a nice de-airing Bailey pug mill at NCECA reduced as a floor model. (when I drove it back to Montana from Portland , I had it wrapped in newspaper and started the heater in my van several time at night to keep it from freezing on the way home. It was full of demo clay) you can get good deals at NCECA (National Council on Education of Ceramic Arts) the trade show. Coming to Richmond, Va march 25th to 28th of March in Richmond, Va. Great trade show is part of it. Tool vendors from all over. Marcia
  27. Thanks @Bill Kielb Yes, they are the right ones. I truly do have the best phone support. A service guy in Portland but I always have to stretch them a bit, maybe 3 inches in order to get them seated in the channels. And I am very cautious about stretching them too much. I think I erred in the other direction. Should I put the torch right on the element, then poke it in the channel??
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