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Stephen

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Everything posted by Stephen

  1. Maybe consider buying the Skutt stand that goes with the 1027. That thing I think could hold a tank. The nearly $400 price tag seemed a bit high at the time but don't regret it at all. It fits the kiln perfectly and the wheels are great. If you do get it don't get confused about the wheels. You really can't just roll it around because of the venting BUT you can roll it out of the way or change location really easily without disassembly and reassembly and that is really nice. I get it. After shelling out almost three grand it seems like something broke. We have a big stand underneath but I
  2. have also had success with re-firing for small defects. Bill and your friend may well be right if trying to do something big. The most common for us is when the glaze missed a spot. The glaze will run though so if say a mug ran just right in first firing then it may be too close to the bottom of mug to refire. Saving a couple bucks in material and ten bucks labor is not worth dealing with a glaze drip on kiln shelf. In addition to making sure no dust on bisque you might also consider firing to cone 5 and adding a 20-30 minute hold and use heat work to get to cone 6. That seemed to clear up a l
  3. Maybe evaluate just what you throw and try to figure out if you think you will really have much of a limitation. Below is a link to a chart from the Lakewood Pottery FAQs I used as a gauge when I first started throwing. We use a couple of Shimpo Whisperers which some say have low torque for really big pots but since we rarely throw large pots we haven't noticed. Nothing on this list even reaches 6lbs. I love the Shimpo Whisperer because I'm hard of hearing and they are really quiet and I assume folks love the Lite because it can be moved around easier at only 50lbs. I guess what I am sayi
  4. wow, I didn't know that. Will have to check it out here in Texas (unlikely) and everyone should consider doing that if they ever go full time. Its not a huge sum of money (I've paid it as part of my payroll) and if you go under but manage to put in enough quarters it will help keep the wolf away from the door while you figure out a plan B.
  5. Well when you retire you get the self employment tax back because it's the employee and employer portion of payroll for social security and medicare. I have never understood why they don't collect unemployment insurance with that tax that for people who close their businesses though.
  6. Ur right, hadn't really thought that part through. With 2 of us we prob put in close to 80 hours of work, 70 at least on the shows that run 9-10 hours with early in time. But I don't spend all that much of the time really working past load in and load out. Most of the rest is fairly enjoyable as long as the weather is nice. So there's that :-)
  7. Seems right to me. A couple grand in a weekend show (good/great show for us) would be a 75-80 shipping events not to mention all the cost of running the ads to get people to the site to buy and the zillion emails involved. Pottery is just so involved to make that if all your sales came from online then you functional limit of what you can make and sell seems like it would go way down. Dunno though maybe you just get so good at packing boxes and answering emails that it levels out? It does seem like the folks here that have done it all quit though citing to little return for too much work.
  8. ya know I don't really get why you feel it has to be geared toward the hobby market. Commercial markets may already have options but yours may be able to compete and over time rise to the top and if its cheaper it may also have some appeal with some studio potters as well. While disrupting markets is powerful and the holy grail of bringing products to market its not essential. Taking a seat at the table and then starting the sell, redesign, sell, redesign cycle is very doable and will lead to opportunities that come from becoming a part of the market you sell in. You also gain name recognition
  9. well that sucks. Have you been candling wet or damp bisque loads?
  10. hey for the first time in ages I went and filed my taxes before the week of the deadline. I don't know why I procrastinate till the last minute every year. After hearing about it so much this week and last I just grabbed my folder at 5 and logged into Turbo Tax and was done by 8. After using them for the past 7 years they are a breeze since everything is there and all I have to do is update it. I do the small business self employed edition to handle both the day job and the pottery business and a years worth of receipts and a square revenue report took me less than two hours on the business an
  11. ha ha, get that. Hey just tape a piece of paper on the wall by kiln (not too close :-) and just date at line when you fire and jot down bisque or glaze and firing time. Only need more if you do something different such as long hold or fast fire. Setting up cone packs can be a bit of a bother and I admit we only do it about half the time these days but it really does help to know exactly what each shelf fired to if you are trying to figure out certain glaze issues. Packed or loose will effect the temp on a shelf and some just fire differently from top shelf to bottom shelf. Once you know the k
  12. Thanks Mark, they are press molds for tiles. They need to all stay the same size. I have ditched air release molds so need a lot more press molds so I can still make large batches. Just adding as I go.
  13. so you think in direct sunlight or just back patio with air flow is good? Do have fans but they are an hour away in storage :-) On the warping, not sure which post but the one that mentioned drying in sunlight put on narrow edge to avoid warping in parens,
  14. I have normally been able to just let newly poured molds sit around for a week or two before using so this has not been an issue but I have a few new ones from yesterday that I am anxious to use. I did read several comments and in one from 7 years ago someone said it was fine to just put them out in the sum, standing on end so they don't warp. I only saw one person say that. Is that an OK way to do it. Today is supposed to get into low 90's but 70% humidity. Tomorrow is mid 90's clear sky with low humidity. Appreciate input.
  15. Forgive me if I'm talking down. You mentioned you just got the kiln and I am assuming this is all new to you. If it tripped an 06 cone (1800+) then the meters wrong and it got to 1800-1825 depending on ramp, not 1200. I would just run a light test load with cone packs and see whats your kilns firing to without a doubt and toss the old meter. Maybe run some glaze experiments on some quickly thrown pots so you have something useful if the kiln does hit temp. Normally you would put a pack of one cone lower, one dead on and one higher ( 5, 6 & 7 for cone 6 for example) but you might
  16. I readily concede that old kilns last a long time if they are kept in top condition. Of course the flip side of that is that if you invest in a new kiln now and keep it in top condition it may well last you for the rest of your life so unlike something like a new car there is value in that. Shortly after I started this thread I came to the decision that it was worth it to me to just buy a new one. That was a few years ago and I got a new Skutt 1027 for just under $2500 with vent and tax and I picked it up and drove it 2 thousand miles to Texas. The used ones I found that had electronic c
  17. wha ya know if you have made up your mind I would try and get it done today. I think a lot more things will grind to a halt this week.
  18. ha ha, I have never been a late filer. I only worry about taxes one day a year, april 14th. This year its July 14th but my taxes are always filed on time.
  19. I would suggest calling library or going to their website to see if the have digital books available, many do and if so I bet they also have a kindle tutorial on checking out their books. don't know about tutorials but I use the fire's as my tablet. We use Amazon delivery enough to justify the price of Amazon prime so I also get access to the prime video's. For $10 a month you can subscribe to unlimited library. Lots of Indie pubs here but there are over a million book available and no extra charges. I signed up for a three month 99 cent intro in Jan and I think I will renew. Lot of junk
  20. ha ha, when ur my age u are one of the young guys :-)
  21. Any chance ur mortgage id freddie or Fannie? The did a year forebearance today. Most insurance has a waiting period but if you hit the exchange u should be able to get cheap or free gap. Ya know I think the best way to get picked up is to zero in on something with big data, hardcore php or really master one of the hot platforms. Thirty years ago it was the all round but these days a specialty will open doors with someone. At least when someone is looking for a hardcore php programmer the stack of apps is smaller.
  22. so sorry to hear that Liam, hope u bounce back quickly! Did u see the Amazon work from home post today, don't know if there's anything there for u but u might surf on it. Good luck!
  23. yeah thats the thing this is hitting people in a very uneven way. I've got 7,8 years and that means I prob will loose a big chunk but there is time to make some back. You have 30 years so long runway. The guy planning his life around retiring next year, he has no time to bounce back with so hopefully he had already re=balanced away from pure stocks, although its all been a trainwreck. Then of course there's the folks scrambling for food and rent after being laid off and stocks arent their problem right now. This whole thing comes down to where you are in life and how prepared you are for a hit
  24. now do you mean my 'shorts' as in around my waist or stock picks Yeah it's been a bloodbath in our accounts, I keep trying to encourage my wife to stop looking at it. I do remember that most of the damage in 08 was a fading memory in a few years. Within that last 5 years ya really need to start moving out of stocks. The recovery window is just too short.
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