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About susieblue

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    Advanced Member
  • Birthday February 26

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  • Location
    Deep River, CT
  • Interests
    Way too many interests to list them all...aside from pottery; silversmithing, painting, drawing, gardening, kayaking, hiking, camping, sewing, and home improvement (my "real job" is Commercial Interior Design).

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  1. My friend is downsizing. She stopped making large pieces and huge quantities a while ago and realizes she's not going back to it. She only works on small ornaments and makes jewelry now. She is planning to rent out her detached studio space to another artist (or someone else who can use it) so she's selling off items that are taking up space. Finally got some new pics from her today. She cleaned it it up a bit. She realizes she's got a limited market and is not like to get a lot for it so we're posting it all over the place including with a well-known equipment repair shop/studio, group studio buildings, arts centers, etc. Thanks for all the advice.
  2. Wow. Thanks for the heads up on the power connection. I'll have to talk to her about that.
  3. Hi folks, A potter friend of mine has an old L&L Kiln. She is "technically challenged" so I offered to put a flyer together for her. I know she paid 6k for it in 1989 but she used it a lot back then. It is in working condition and the elements have about a half life left in them. Since it's all about the market and who happens to be looking at the time we've discussed a multi-pronged approach and posting it at two local art centers that teach pottery (one is a Potter's Association) as well as listing it on Craig's List, Facebook Potter's Attic, PottersWeb.net, and maybe the classifieds here (which I just discovered). Anyhow, we're having trouble settling on a value for it, so I'm hoping you all may have some suggestions. Thank you in advance. (BTW: It's located in Connecticut) Here's the description: L&L Large Electric Top-loader Cone 10 rating 5 rings, 5 thermocouples. - may be operated with fewer rings. Interior Dimensions: 29” dia x 45”h with 2.5” brick Good working condition. Jupiter Econo model: J2945 LT-3 Kiln Sitter Amps:100 Watts: 20,800 Kw20.8 Voltage ac/1ph208. (Does not require 3-phase commercial circuit. May be operated using a residential panel with a correctly size breaker) 13 half shelves 3/4 inch thick Lots of kiln furniture Working pyrometer Extra sitter cones I suggested she might want to add the top ring and get pics of the interior as well as all of the kiln furniture. TIA
  4. Hello Howdy, A lot depends on what type of effects you want. One recommendation: It's easier to paint your underglazes on greenware or bisque ware, then fire and apply clear glaze after the underglaze has set. This helps to avoid bleeding and movement of the underglazes.If you are firing to cone 6 make sure the underglazes you use are rated for that. Some will lose color at higher temps. . Ceramic Arts Network (here) has lots of freebies on glazing techniques. I would start by looking up majolica techniques. Linda Arbuckle has some video clips and books out there. Check also online for books and videos on glazing techniques(YouTube is usually helpful). For books and DVDs read the reviews or previews of content to see if there is good info on underglaze use. UG is used a lot for low fire work so don't forget to check the info on low fire glazing as well. It's pretty straightforward stuff to use. It can be applied heavily for more opaque application or used thinly for a more watercolor-like result...and anything in between. Happy glazing.
  5. Thanks. The clay is Miller 45 Buff. I understand that the porosity of the bisque is the issue and I am wondering how to circumvent that without having to fully vitrify the clay first. I am going to test the wetting technique tonite but was hoping someone here might have run into this problem, or was aware of it, and had a workaround. Thanks..
  6. I would have majored in ceramics instead of graphics and interior design. I was being practical. I thought, but after having left clay behind for about 25 years I regret not having it in my life at that time. I work full time and spend just about every minute of my free time in my basement studio. I always wonder where I could have gone with the knowledge and experience I would have gained not to mention the passion I have for it. I think love clay more than people as I am more willing and motivated to spend time alone with my wheel. (Fortunately my friends understand.) Clay is my zen thing. Who know where our journeys may have taken us, though. I could have ended up a starving artist relying on the kindness of others to help me get by or I could have been the next [insert your favorite famous potter here].
  7. I have been experimenting with black iron oxide wash lately. The first time I tried it I used a cone 6 fired, unglazed clay (Miller 45 Buff) and got a nice clean wipe with the wash remaining in the crevices and achieved an even tone over the rest of the piece. When I tried it on bisque ware (05) it was another story. No matter how much I scrubbed I ended up with a blotchy wash on the flat surfaces. I am wondering if there is a trick to working with washes on bisque that I am missing. I thought about wetting the piece first and/or making the wash thinner perhaps. I don't want to have to take up precious space in a glaze firing to vitrify the pieces before I can apply the wash. Wondering if anyone has experienced this problem and how you resolved it. Thank you.
  8. Here are a couple of examples. The leaves are among the few that survived the attempt to fire with bead racks. They were on 6" wires which sagged and clumped together. (there were about 40 of these to start. It was a sad kiln opening. I'll admit I didn't know to put ones outside ot the posts to balance the wires so that may have been why it happened. The lentil beads are definitely heavier than that and I am planning to make some larger ones as Holiday ornaments.
  9. Looking for suggestions for glaze firing heavy beads and ornaments. I have a lot of them and using the standard bead trees/racks they will sag for sure. I have seen one option on YouTube from "Janice the Potter" who uses an extrusion with high fire 17g kanthal wire loops to fire her pendants. I am considering something like this (would have to slab build multiples of them since I don't have an extruder). I have also considered using stilt posts in firebrick/clay base made from heavy gauge nichrome/kanthal but am concerned it will sag and tip over at Cone 5/6. Has anyone had experience with this and what do you use? Thanks.
  10. Thanks for all the great responses. Looks like my first instinct was right on. L&L it is. Thank you.
  11. I am looking into buying a new kiln and have narrowed it down to two models that can work for my purposes, The Easy-Fire 23s by L&L or the Skutt KM1018. Both are the same price with the accompanying furniture kits. Both would be supplied with their standard model controllers. Dyna-trol vs Kilnmaster. I have a 60amp breaker and my electrician brother is wiring a new outlet for me (the old kiln was hardwired). At first I thought the L&L was a shoe-in because of the element holders but now I see that Skutt has their own rebuttal to this claiming that the heat distribution in their kilns is better because it isn't limited by the kiln element holders https://skutt.com/features/pdf/L%20_L%20response.pdf. I really am not sure what to think. I realize that some of it is simply subjective but not being able to actually experience these models first-hand I am at the mercy of the oh-so-fickle internet. Are there more linear feet of coils in a Skutt? Are the element holders of an L&L a help or a hinderance? are there other glaring differences I should know about? I would appreciate any insights potters here may have regarding these two models, especially those who have experienced both manufacturers' (pref recent) products. Thank you.
  12. Thanks everyone. I tested the elements and they seem to be ok. I did, however find out the the wiring was brittle and I think that may have been the issue. One of the terminals just snapped right off when I removed the panel. I got some high temp wire and terminals and replaced the connections from the elements to the control box as well as replacing the bus bars with wires. Hoping that does the trick. I still have to test fire to be sure but the elements are heating up. I did call Paragon to ask a number of questions and found out that the infinite switches they have now can be used on the old Duncan kilns; they just have to be installed upside down. I didn't bother to order any additional parts. I figure I'll try to see if this works first.
  13. Hi Everyone, Looks like my old kiln-sitter Duncan DK1020-2 is in need of new elements (about 90% sure of this) and I am eager to replace them since, of course, I am on a deadline. I placed a call to Paragon already with a couple questions but it's the end of the day and i doubt I'll hear back til tomorrow...or later. I admit it's my first foray into kiln repair, but I am pretty handy and my boyfriend is bringing his multimeter over so i have faith between the two of us we can handle this; especially given all the videos and the manual information at hand. Here's my question: As I am going to be replacing all of the elements at this point are there other parts it is advisable to test and/or replace as well since I'm doing this? All the parts appear to be the original ones (from the 1970s/early 80s, yikes). Wondering if i should also plan to replace the power relays, infinite switch or anything else. Many thanks.
  14. Thanks. I found the "Paragon Switch Operated Ceramic Kiln Instruction and Service Manual" online. It said the circuit was the problem. I lucked out that Bro finished with a client early so I had him replace it today He upgraded it to a 60 amp. We found out the amperage info we had followed in the original manual was incorrectly listed. On the the kiln it said min 45 amps but the book said 40. Bro says that local electric company can drop power supply to neighborhoods by 10% without notifying anyone. He suspects it fired successfully at peak when the local voltage was a little higher but when dropped became too much strain on the circuit for a suspended period. It's been firing for hours now and I'm praying that it hits temp. I transitioned to cone 5/6 about a year ago and have only run it this high about 4 or 5 times before. Still seems slow; possibly because I typically fire overnight I just haven't figured out the timing yet. Thinking I may end up having to replace the elements as well.
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