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Rockhopper

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Everything posted by Rockhopper

  1. Most of my throwing thus far has been with Standard # 112. I'm thinking about trying something a little darker, and like looks of Laguna's WC611 #70 . Would like to hear pro's & con's from someone that's used the WC611. (Would be even better if you've used both and can give a comparison between the two )
  2. Maybe you could combine ideas from Mark and Neil: Drill a hole through knob and lid, and follow Mark's suggestion to glue it on and glaze over. Then, assuming it stays in place through the firing, take Neil's advice and use a stainless steel bolt, nut, and washer(s) to reinforce it so you're not relying solely on the glaze to hold it together.
  3. I was thinking the same as Min - place it on a pallet (could be just a piece of plywood) so the weight is evenly distributed, and you're not applying pressure to just a couple of hand-sized areas when you lift. Might be helpful if you give us an idea of what "heavy" means... For some, that might be 25 pounds - for others, 40 or 50.
  4. Whether you use a sub-panel, or just a fused disconnect/switch, with an 85' run from panel to kiln, it would be a good idea (maybe even required by code) to have a shut-off near the kiln anyway.
  5. Might be a good idea to do this before you make things, so you can be sure you use materials that are acceptable to the kiln owner. It would be a shame to make a potentially beautiful piece, then find that because of the clay or glaze used, or the firing temperature required, there's nobody near you willing to fire it.
  6. As Bill said - that 'pop' was likely significant. There are a number of things it could have been - but I'm thinking if you look inside the wiring box, you may find a wire that's come loose or got pinched during the re-assembly after replacing elements, etc. I don't see mention of what temp you're firing to, but if the manual I pulled the picture from matches your kiln, it's rated at 1000*C max - and says in the manual that even if you set the control higher than that, "... it still will heating up maximum only to 1000 C. "
  7. If you haven't already checked the door switch that Bill mentioned, I would start there. It's possible that when you replaced the elements, you un-knowingly moved the switch just enough for it to close when the door closed - but then after the firing, it moved again, back to the point where it's not fully closing. It's probably the least expensive component, and one of the easiest to diagnose... First, check that it is securely fastened in place. Does the switch body move at all when you push/pull on it ? Depending on the construction of the switch, if it's moving even a millimeter, it could be enough to keep the switch from closing, causing your controller to read it as the door being open. If the switch is securely fastened, then you'll want to check continuity through the switch to see that it opens and closes... If it seems to be functioning, then look for a way to adjust it so that it's a little closer to the door. (Might also check the hinges, to be sure the door is closing properly.) If your kiln is like the one in the picture below, it looks like the switch is triggered by a lever that extends below the bottom corner of the door... could be that lever has gotten bent down a little, to where the door doesn't move it far enough to close the switch.
  8. Thanks Min. Will keep your design in mind, next time I make an 'essential' trip to the hardware store... but, in keeping with the 'use what I have on-hand' plan, I used Callie's idea from the same thread, and made one from an empty glaze jar. Wouldn't want to do large amounts with it, but since I'm sieving less than a pint at a time, it does the job. (It sits nicely on a pint canning jar.) Fortunately nothing hard enough to require that much force... mostly just 'boogers', as my painter father-in-law called the lumps that sometimes show up on a paint roller. Was able to work most of them through my 'jar-lid sieve' with just a stiff paintbrush.
  9. I have some commercial glazes that have gotten lumpy in storage, and need to sieve them before using. I'm thinking a standard kitchen 'strainer' is probably not fine enough, but rather than ordering a sieve on-line, and waiting a week or more, I'm hoping to make one from materials I have on-hand. I have a piece of stainless steel screen, that's labeled "80 Mesh .0055". I see sieves advertised by various pottery suppliers, listed anywhere from 40 mesh to 150 mesh. So I have two questions: 1) What does the 80 mean when referring to an 80 mesh sieve ? (I think I'm safe in assuming the '80' is not holes per square inch, as that would make an opening of around 0.1 inches, depending on wire size) 2) Would this screen that I have be suitable for sieving glazes - or is it too fine ?
  10. Welcome to the forum, Joanne. My guess is it's a 'luster', applied after glazing, to add metallic gold accents (like the gold or silver band, frequently seen around the rim of a fine china plate) . I've never used one myself, but there are many here who have. A couple of suggestions that will help you get better answers: 1) Change the Title of your post to something that reflects your question (maybe "What is Med-Mar Liquid Bright?") 2) If you can, post pictures of the container and/or label. 3) Let folks know where you are. You don't have to give your address, or even the name of the town, but forum members are literally all around the world, and it's helpful to know whether you're in USA, UK, AUS, etc., when you're asking about specific products.
  11. Coating it with a clear epoxy *might* make it safer - but only if it's a food-safe epoxy. If you really want to put fruit in it, and don't want to (or don't have the means to) have it tested, I would suggest finding a clear glass or plastic bowl that fits in it as a liner. That will keep the oranges from touching the glaze... and it will protect the bowl from any acids that might seep out of the oranges.
  12. To get an accurate test of the clay itself, your test will need to be done on a piece of fired, un-glazed clay. The un-glazed bottom is a relatively small portion of the overall surface area of the mug (probably around 10%, or less, depending on dimensions). Even though the glaze is 'leaking', the glaze will still slow the absorption enough to give you an artificially low result - and lead you to believe it's tighter than it really is.
  13. My thoughts were mostly concerning your pic of the flex-duct, with the note that says 'A lot of rust' - thinking that if you have 'rust' inside an aluminum duct, it's traveling there from somewhere else, because aluminum doesn't produce the red/brown rust that we see in your pics of the (presumably) steel fan housing and end connector.
  14. You may need to pass it through multiple screens of decreasing mesh size. First screening will depend on how much & how big the "grit" is. If there are large pebbles and/or twigs, you may want to start with some 'hardware cloth' (usually around1/2" square mesh). As Callie said, ordinary window-screen works well for the next stage. If that doesn't get enough out, try a paint strainer. There are several threads here in the forums, with a lot of good information on the topic. Try searching for "local clay". Good luck, and enjoy the journey !
  15. Just kind-of shooting from the hip here - but are you sure it's "rust" (oxidation of the duct & fittings themselves) ? Your first two pic's definitely look like it could be rust working its way through whatever coating was (or wasn't) on the interior of the fittings - but that flex-duct looks like it's aluminum. If that's the case, and you've got the same red/brown inside the flex duct, you may be looking at material that's actually condensed out of the kiln vapors, rather than rusting of the duct itself. (Aluminum does oxidize - but it wouldn't be 'rust red'.)
  16. A complete guess here, as I've done very little slip-casting: Is it possible that the dark area is occurring in the spot where the slip first hits the bottom of the mold as you pour it in ? (Don't know why it would cause that mark, but it's the first thing that came to mind that might explain why you're getting similar marks, with different molds, but all on the bottom.) It's possible that a higher bisque fire would clear it. According to my Orton chart, your top temp of 1020 C would put you around ^05-1/2. Many potters bisque at ^04 (around 1070 C)
  17. OK... so you're referring to the areas I circled below ? Sorry - my first thought was that you didn't realize you had speckled clay, so weren't expecting the tiny dark spots. May have to wait for response from someone more experienced with troubleshooting clay bodies to get a good answer ... Some more details that might be helpful to the experts: Have you used the same process, with the same clay, previously and not had the muddiness ? What cone/temperature was your bisque fire ? How tightly packed was your kiln during bisque firing ? (Did you stack your pots during the bisque - or was there air space around all of them ? )
  18. Not certain about the muddy appearance, but the spots are definitely the normal appearance for that clay. You might be able to sieve them out if you have a mesh that's finer than the size of the particles that produce the specks - but that would be a lot of work, and may not get all of them. If you don't want the specks, your best option will be to get a clay that doesn't have them. If you like everything about the clay except the specks, check with your supplier - they may have the same clay available without the specks.
  19. What clay/slip are you using ? Any chance you unintentionally picked up a speckled clay ?
  20. Are you certain you didn't get your glazes swapped ? I know you said the pot is more blue than the photo shows - but comparing the photo with the color swatches below, it looks like a pretty close match to the Pearl on my screen. And, just comparing the two squares, I would say the Pearl is somewhat blue-ish, and the Sage is a tad purple-ish - especially compared to the pearl. Also - have you tested on a different color clay ? Looks to me like part of the color variance may be coming from the underlying clay (which looks like a yellow-ish buff in the photo). To my eye, it looks a little greenish toward the top, where it also looks like the glaze is a little thinner, allowing more of the clay color to show through.
  21. Hmm.. Been a Loooong time since I did that - but that's a pretty good description of what I was hearing. Threw for a bit this evening, and so-far the ticking is gone... Don't know if it was sanding the brushes, blowing out the holes they go in, or both - but I think I'm gonna call it 'fixed'.
  22. Seems unlikely to be a wear issue. Have only had it 1-1/2 yrs, with light use - and no use for most of the past year. (Tornado blew a tree onto my garage last Memorial day. Spent the summer building a new garage & just got my new kiln a couple of weeks ago. Just now getting time to start throwing again.) The noise actually returned after I removed & reinserted the brushes - while still tipped up. It's much quieter now, after sanding the brushes. Haven't thrown on it since putting it back on its feet (may get to do that later this evening), but it's still way quieter than it was. I went ahead and ordered a stone - but may just leave it on the shelf for a bit & see what happens.
  23. Thank you all. Definitely seems to be in the brushes and/or commutator. Tipped it up on end, took the belt cover off, and turned it on... and the noise was gone - like the car that makes a weird noise, but won't do it when you're at the shop. Didn't see any signs of rubbing, and the belt alignment is good, so decided to pull the brushes while I was at it. Both looked clean & smooth - just a few hair-thin lines going across one them... But, when I put them back in - the noise was back. Pulled them back out, sanded lightly with some 600 sandpaper, blew some more air into the holes while turning the motor via the belt, and put them back in. Much quieter now - but still a faint ticking sound at low speeds. When I came back to post this follow-up, I remembered there's a pinned post from Mark at the top of the forum, titled "Brent Wheels and equipment fix it-videos ". Guess I should have gone there first... I followed the link in that post, and found "Brent Wheel Noise Diagnostics" ... Apparently I need to get a "brush seater & commutator cleaner" and, as the videos says, "Stone the commutator".
  24. Lightly used Brent model B, approx 3-1/2 yrs old, is making a ticking/clicking sound the speed of which directly corresponds to the wheel speed. It stops when wheel is at full speed, but is heard again as soon as the wheel slows. It's been doing it for a good while, but haven't thrown anything in several months, so forgot about it 'til I started it up this evening. I thought it was a belt related noise, but when I got on the floor to listen closer, it sounds like it's coming from the bottom of the motor housing, rather than the top where the belt is. I made a couple of short recordings, one at constant, relatively low speed, and one starting at low and increasing to full speed. Was hoping someone would recognize the sound and tell me where to start looking, to fix it. Can't post .mp3 directly to forum, so hopefully this link will work: https://www.dropbox.com/sh/80hscw13o90q6zx/AABH7hn2bjhdczR8Z4GmcGT3a?dl=0
  25. Are you getting blisters over the entire pot - or only where the decals are ? I've never worked with decals on ceramics, so can't offer specific help, but feel like clarifying that detail might be useful to those that can help.
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