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Everything posted by jojess

  1. I'm still learning how to navigate my kiln.... 10 months of using a new electric kiln, only to have to replace it with different model due to faulty bricks, hence i have to fire a different kiln. I have one spy hole and one vent hole in the lid. I don't have a vent system. I use cone 6 commercial glazes on stoneware and midfire porcelain. What are your suggestions as to plugging either of these two holes for a glaze firing. I have read many different opinions and the manufacturer of the kiln is different again. What happens to the glazes when the holes are plugged or not plugged? Do you plug at the beginning of a firing or part way through?? And if they are used at what temp can you pull them out?? I hope someone can help a newbie. JO
  2. Hi anyone out there in cyber space.. a newbie here still learning a lot, this forum is great, so lucky to have all of you experienced potters happy to share and help with advice and techniques especially with us beginners. I have a question about applying a coloured glaze over the mishima technique. How do you do this without the colour covering the inlayed lines that you have made. I draw into my leather hard clay then apply underglaze into the lines then scrape this back to revel the pattern , i then want to put a block colour over the pattern, how do i do this without losing the underglazes lines???? many thanks JO
  3. Hi Jojess, I am going to say grog, (because that is what I use), in place of sand, (what you use). When I have grog stuck to the back of my plates, I rub the backs together and it comes off. Or I can use any fired flat bottom to rub off anything that sticks, like grog or kiln wash. The grog should be thin to avoid unevenness. I do leave the grog on my kiln shelves, however, I do rub the sides and bottom with a clean dry green scrubby before placing in the kiln to avoid any stray grains. I don't know if you saw it, but I described how to apply the grog to the shelf above. Hi Karen, thank you for your hints and tips..i used grog on my shelves for the first time and no cracks in my hearts yay!! I am now trying paperclay, rather than the porcelain that i have been using as someone suggested that it maybe more suited to my flat pieces. I have some more hearts drying so yet to see what they will do in the first firing.
  4. Hi Again I have unloaded the glaze firing and i put sand on my shelf... thankfully no cracks this time, but the sand has stuck to the back of the 3 pieces and also to some of the shelf, is this normal & should I try to clean it off the shelf or just put more sand on it for the next firing??? How thick should the layer of sand be? Should you be able to see some the shelf through the sand or should it be totally covered. What kind of sand should i have used? I have made some small coil rods to try next time, so will bisque these next time. Once these are bisqued, Should these be placed under the hearts for the bisque firing as well as the glaze firing? also you talk about a cookies... are these the same size as the piece to be fired or do you place a few smaller cookies under each item. Sorry for all the questions but am pretty new and flying solo here with my new kiln. I have lost many pieces to this cracking business and am very keen to rectify it Can anyone post a picture of the cookies they use?
  5. I have just unloaded a bisque firing with only 2 large hearts and 1 flat tile. One of the hearts has a fine crack in the same place as my other heart cracks, but with these two i was super careful of handling them, used a round cutter to make the V of the heart and compressed very gently They had 3 weeks drying as i went away so were untouched while drying. Why would one crack and not the other??? I had them flat on the kiln shelf with nothing under them. Should i use sand in a bisque firing as well. I am not going to glaze and fire this one again now as i have learnt that the crack only gets larger. feeling frustrated !!!
  6. Hi, the hearts vary in size with the largest being 22cm in length 18cm wide and approx 1-11/2 cm thick. i will try sand next time. thanks for all the suggestions.
  7. Hi Babs, i had softened the curve, my kiln is set to skip a cool cycle. I open the kiln 30-50degs C
  8. Use a round cutter (drinking straw/metal tube etc) to make the v of the heart, then use a knife to cut from the hole already created. This should help to stop the cracks from propagating from the sharp corner. thanks Benzine, i will try that with a cutter I did make the centre point a very soft curve, still cut with a knife tho and it still cracked.
  9. Hi Min the crack has no glaze going down into it it just looks like a clean break. I use commercial underglazes and commercial clear glaze over the top am too new to start mixing my own yet!!! A lot of good advise given to you already but I'm wondering about cooling dunts starting at the weak spot of the pieces. How fast does your kiln cool down and how big are these pieces? Plus, what temp do you crack open the lid? Hi Min, i have the electronic controller set to skip for the cooling. I open the kiln at approx 30-50 degs C
  10. hi to your cat I have made the 'v' of the heart less sharp and more rounded to avoid sharp angles but still had cracking, i will try compressing the edges more. Is it special sand that you put on the kiln shelf??
  11. Hi Benzine, wow there are helpful people on this site , this is the first time that i have asked a question and am so thankful that people are happy to offer advise. I did change the shape of the heart so there is a softer angle at the top and not a sharp 'V' but some of them still crack. I am handcutting them so is this the problem?? should i lift them off the shelf with stilts, i am just worried about sagging tho.
  12. Hi Min the crack has no glaze going down into it it just looks like a clean break. I use commercial underglazes and commercial clear glaze over the top am too new to start mixing my own yet!!!
  13. I am a newbie to pottery about 6 months into this exciting media. My knowledge is limited so am still learning...... I am using stoneware and mid fire porcelain clays firing to cone 6. My Big problem is i have many pieces crack after the glaze firing. I make lots of flat heart shaped wall hangings and so many of these are cracking in the same place every time like in the dip of the heart or like the centre of a 'm'. I am very careful with my slabs and slow drying etc, to keep everything flat. they come out of the bisque fire ok, i then underglaze and clear glaze before the final firing. I can have three or four hearts on the same shelf and two will crack and two won't !!!!! i do not put anything under the hearts is this my problem? I have stilted porcelain before and had some sagging. so have not used anything since. I have tried them lower in the kiln, in the middle or up the top and it doesn't seem to matter where in the kiln they are i can still get cracking on all levels. I have a electric kiln with a electronic controller. Some crack some don't, my hearts are about 1 1/2cm thick. Can anyone help me here or have any suggestions as to how to stop this happening? I can't seem to upload a pic of one sorry.
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