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fergusonjeff

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  1. Not sure the reconditioned list on the peter pugger website is worthwhile. For example one listed there today had already sold long before I checked on it about 5 years ago. Finding a used Peter Pugger is next to impossible.
  2. The "spins" is well described in the above two posts. sometimes even adding it slowly on the left as Mark suggests is not enough. It can help to get the chamber really full and then close the lid but don't lock it. The clay will slowly push the lid open and then you can restart the mixing. the pug-mill is a vastly underrated tool. It was a real pain when I would have to try to add water to clay bags and then let them sit for a month or so to even out the moisture, You are then stuck working with whatever stiffness you have for whatever you want to throw. Then you either throw out your scrap or spend a lot of time and space reclaiming. It can improve your work in other ways too. It is nice to know that is something does not turn out the way you want, you can just throw the clay back into the next batch.
  3. I have the 20ss model and it has been the best pottery purchase I have made. I mix different commercial clays and switch out between cone 10 (wood fired) and cone 6 every few months. I can adjust the mixture for the day's throwing according to how soft I want it and the consistent 3" pug allows me to cut regular sizes easily for repeated throwing. I add in whatever scrap (does not matter if wet, dry, or anywhere in between) and usually let that sit in the mixer overnight just to even things out. I have mixed some clays from scratch, but it is very finicky and i generally avoid it. There are better ways to mix from scratch. There is a slight learning curve, especially when adding water to avoid the spins.
  4. Bill, That is helpful. I'll be doing my last wood firing of the spring in a couple weeks and will limp by with my fiberboards, but that gives me all summer to find some shelves before the fall firings. I am pretty sure they were not referring to core-lite or the nitrile bonded stuff, just newer (according to them, non-mullite) shelves. The thought was no one made "mullite" shelves any more and the newer shelves cannot handle the temperature differential of a damper in a wood kiln.
  5. I was told "new" shelves don't work like the old ones and will crack as dampers. That is why I was trying all kinds of other options. Would something like this work? https://www.sheffield-pottery.com/KILN-SHELF-p/spha08.htm
  6. Mark, I tried to find mullite shelves for dampers but was not able to . Not sure they are made any more. Do you know anywhere I could get them? The fiber boards mostly hold up, but warp a lot. I am on my 6th firing with the first set. They hold up better than my previous attempt which was 1/2 thick steel plates.
  7. Thiamant, A cheap grinder is fine. I have about 5 and most were under $20. The wheel you show is for cutting bricks, not grinding surfaces. Look for one more like this: https://www.ediamondtools.com/products/premium-turbo-diamond-cup-wheels?variant=11941428932&gclid=CjwKCAjw9MuCBhBUEiwAbDZ-7qLxkyvo0l-3rMlytTa0pH5Vy9oOgZCtsJfOoLImBx47F3tZP_-VlhoC4SMQAvD_BwE
  8. I second the diamond cup wheel. They are much more expensive than a masonry disk, but will remove glaze that masonry disks just seem to heat up. I found a diamond cup wheel at harbor freight for under $30 and eventually replaced it with another cheap one from menards.
  9. The push from underneath just goes through the lid into the knob, but not all the way through.
  10. I used to have this problem on small knobs of clay I would add to lids (at leather hard) and carefully throw. The lid and knob are at too different stages of drying. Another potter showed me a simple trick once that has worked every time. I take the blunt end of a needle tool (1/4" round) and push up through the lid into the newly added handle. I don't mind the small hole on the inside of the lid and have not had a single handle/knob detach since.
  11. This is the same clay I use for most of my cone 6 work. I usually mix it about 50/50 with other cone 6 porcelain or stoneware. Laguna makes another speckled clay you might try, but it is sometimes harder to get. I thin the number is 608. I think it trows much better than 403 but if anything it has even more speckle. I think 608 is more brown compared to 403 being more yellow.
  12. I agree with Neil. My standard cone 6 mix is 1/3 each of speckled stoneware, red stoneware, and porcelain. My cone 10 wood fire mix is 1/2 course stoneware (Rods Bod) and 1/2 various porcelains (some commercial, some home-made). The mixes all throw and fire better than any of the individual clays. I did have a light colored cone 5 stoneware once that bloated a lot at cone 6, even when mixed with other clays. I am still thinking the mixture was bad. Took a while to get all that bad cone 5 clay through my mixes.
  13. I am currently using fiber boards as dampers on my wood kiln. I got them along with some kind of liquid (I think a silica) that I painted on the boards heavily. After drying they are pretty strong. I have used the first set about 4 times and they do warp a little but have remained intact after 12-hour cone 11-12 firings. I would prefer to use kiln shelves but not sure any can handle the temperature differential across the shelf. I have used 1/2" thick steel plates, but these warp and degrade quickly.
  14. I use that same clay for Cone 10 wood firing. You are basically just talking about bisque temps. It is definitely not waterproof at those low temps. I doubt the low-fire glazes would fit well enough to provide any good protective layer. The speckles in Rods Bod are mainly from iron, and they take the high temperatures (like cone 10) to develop. My bisque fired rods-bod (what you are planning) is just an off-white color and very absorbent.
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