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Dick White

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Everything posted by Dick White

  1. For better or worse, the test was partly successful. The decal fired properly, but the glaze did not like the refiring. I will need to develop a glaze that doesn't mind two times through the sauna. dw
  2. Somebody's jackboots may be breaking my door down in a day or two and this wonderful Ceramics Arts website might be taken down for what I am about to do, my apologies in advance, it has been nice knowing y'all. I recently purchased a package of a "standard" waterslide decal paper from a big river south of the equator, the paper is made by a company in S. Korea, so beyond the reach of US patent lawyers. The brief instructions make no mention of ceramic firing, but there are pictures on the package label of graphic images on mugs and plates. I have a test piece in the kiln right now of an image
  3. Another thing to consider is that the notion of Olympic being the only one to offer "dual media" is false. Any programmable kiln that can do higher temperature ceramics can also do lower temperature glass fusing/slumping. All that is needed is a different custom program to fire the glass properly. The new touchscreen controllers (Bartlett Genesis or the Skutt branded version of it) already have glass programs built in. Since you want this kiln to last you a long time, get one that will be easy to maintain (the L&L hard ceramic element holders are worth it for this alone) and multi-zone con
  4. The 120V 20A circuit is going to limit you to either very small things or lower temperatures. There isn't much out there other than a few doll/test kilns.
  5. You raise an interesting question about the Clay-King 129, but let's look at all of them so you can see the differences. Starting with the smallest of them, the Doll kiln, the inside of the kiln is rectangular 11 1/4"L x 7"W x 9"H, or 0.3 cu. feet. Since you need to leave some space around your work in the kiln, the largest you can fit in there will be smaller than a piece of regular letter paper and no taller than the span of your hand. It produces 1800 watts of heat and needs to be on a 20 amp circuit (heavier than a regular 15 amp household circuit). But because of its very small size,
  6. No, the shine and luster start disappearing at around cone 010, until finally gone around cone 1. It is still smooth, as you have seen, but not shiny anymore.
  7. And worse, in my book, there is no written documentation of the complete operation of the KMT. There is what amounts to a quick start, and then all further information is supposedly available only through the on-screen help button, which is rather useless if one does not actually have one at hand. The Genesis has a reasonably full user manual available - a printed copy included with the purchase or online if you haven't yet purchased it.
  8. @Katie Piro yes, programming is easy once one understands the logic of the controller and the technical requirements of clay and glaze. I have several very complicated custom programs for my crystalline glazes. But for many hobby potters, the simplicity of the cone fire method means they don't have to know all the details, it just works. And the quick link to a slow cool in the old controller gave them easy access to one more very useful option, no matter what cone. Now, one must program the whole thing, and know how to change it (or establish another program number) if you want to go to a dif
  9. I had a subscription. The latest one I can find the label indicates my subscription was through 2017, but I don't see anything in my checkbook to indicate a renewal. Polly was a notable in the local clay community here, and it was nice to have this great magazine with local roots. Polly had some hard times happen in her personal life, and then she moved to Florida and the magazine sorta fell off the horizon. Interesting to see this new website suggests she is doing something with it, but alas, none of the links resolve to a functional page to buy anything.
  10. Yes, that was our experience, and why once we set the primary disks we never crawled under there again. But at the same time, I have seen uBoob videos of peeps firing their gas kilns with more easily accessible rear mounted burners go about tweaking the primaries during reduction as if that's what they think (or were taught somewhere) is the thing to do. And then they jam the damper in until great clouds of black smoke come belching out the stack. Another thing that is unnecessary. cheers, dw
  11. Put diagonals just on the sides, the rocking from wedging is front to back, not so much side to side. Then you can still get into your prime storage through the front "door."
  12. Get some diagonal bracing in there. From my high school geometry class, a square or rectangle can be squished sideways into a parallelogram. The sides are all still the same length, but the angles of the corners are no longer 90 degrees. A triangle, on the other hand, cannot be distorted to different angles at the corners without also changing the length(s) of the sides. So, putting a diagonal brace on each side creates triangles from the rectangles and they stop wobbling.
  13. It looks to me like the reduction flame from the peep?
  14. Late to the party as usual... I fired a big 6-burner natural gas Geil for a number of years at the college (before they built us a new art building with 2 Bailey power burner kilns). We set the primaries at the thickness of 2 popsicle sticks and never touched them again. You need some primary air coming through the venturi to mix with the pressurized gas coming out the orifice for good combustion as it exits the burner. With closed primaries, you are just shooting a stream of gas into the kiln hoping it finds enough air from somewhere else before exploding. From here, reduction is achieved sol
  15. A much belated update to my earlier comment about the comparison between the Bartlett Genesis and Skutt adaptation of the Bartlett controller in their KMT (KilnMaster Touchscreen) controller as to cool down programming. The regular old-school Skutt KM, L&L Dynatrol, and Bartlett V6-CF controllers all had a means to append a cool-down segment to a basic cone-fire selection. The Dynatrol and native Bartlett controllers allow linking a full custom User 6 program to the end of a cone fire, while the Skutt KM offers only an optional user-defined single segment of cooling accessed by a few addit
  16. The Aspire wheelhead is 7 inches in diameter. The smallest diameter the Giffin Grip can be adjusted is about 9 inches with the feet in the factory designed position. However, looking at my Grip, you might be able to reverse the feet and they might fit around the 7 inch Aspire wheelhead. Note also that the special Shimpo bats for the Aspire are 9.75 inches in diameter, so it is probable that you can set the Grip on a bat rather than directly on the wheelhead. (You probably already know that standard bats designed for 10 inch wide pins will not work on the Aspire, so if you like to throw on ba
  17. David, what you have is an older Paragon external TnF2 controller that originally had a DTC600 control board in it, hence the labeling printed on the box. For whatever reasons, the original DTC600 control board has been replace/upgraded to a newer Sentry 2.0 board, for which the internal wiring and box are still the same. Because of that change, ignore the DTC600 manual posted by Neil. We still do not know how old the board is. The Paragon website contains several iterations of the Sentry 2.0 instruction manual, dated 2001, 2009, and 2010. All indicate the maximum safety temperature was set at
  18. @Min Sorry for the delay, just got back to the studio to take a pic of a test tile for it. Now if I can just get it off my phone to here...
  19. No need to buy another pyrometer. The digital controller IS a pyrometer with computer programming to do something based on the temperature presented by the thermocouple to the internal pyrometer. All you would get by buying a pyrometer is a confusing slightly different but similar temperature reading. And the notion that it will climb a few more degrees with a hold is incorrect. The controller will maintain the same temperature for as long as it is programmed. What will happen is the heat will penetrate deeper into the ceramic body and a higher cone can be achieved. What we are looking at in t
  20. The apparent digital temperature may or may not be the actual temperature inside the kiln. K-type thermocouples are slightly inaccurate above 2000F and drift as they age, and your kiln controller has adjustments to compensate for that. The witness cones are the only thing that will give you a true measure of heatwork in the center of the shelf and in different places in the kiln. Use the witness cones regularly, and you can learn over a few firings whether cone 5 on your controller actually produces the 6 you want, or something else and you can tweak the controller thermocouple offset or add a
  21. Ok, late to the party as usual. Let's take this one from the top - a base recipe of 41 silica, 35 kaolin, and 24 whiting yields a UMF Si:Al of ~7.1, and molar levels of 3.99 and .57 respectively for Si and Al, and 0 for Boron. Looking at conventional limits, durable glossy glazes usually have an Si:Al ratio near 7 no matter the cone. But the molar levels are a good indicator of the likely cone for proper maturation. A cone 10 glaze generally has Si between 2.5 and 5.5 and Al between .35 and .75, with B at or near zero. Cone 6 glazes generally tend to have Si between 2.0 and 4.5, Al between
  22. Let's go through this one piece at a time. 1) Regarding the uneven firing, sometimes a kiln just has cooler areas and hotter areas. You can work around that by loading the cool areas with more space/less ware and it will heat up faster than the more tightly loaded area. Other times the cooler section may have elements that are more worn out and just can't generate as much heat. You must measure the resistance of the elements in the several sections and compare that to the manufacturer's design specification. Generally, an element that is 10% or more over the design spec is considered wor
  23. Mark, my work is at cone 6. One idea that I neglect to mention above, is copper reds fired in oxidation are very pretty turquoise.
  24. The operation of a thermocouple is the galvanic effect when two dissimilar metals in contact with each other create a very small, but measurable, electric current. The amount of the current is proportional to the temperature at the point of contact. A pyrometer (or the programming in a kiln controller) measures the current and mathematically converts the millivolts to temperature. Going to your specific question, the thermocouple wire is made of the same two metals as the thermocouple, so that there is a continuous circuit back to the pyrometer of the proper metals. For a K-type, the specific
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