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Everything posted by Patat

  1. If you're worried about element life, you can put these pots inside a saggar. you can also then place small cups of solid soda ash around in the saggar for a fuming effect.
  2. For glaze making I use a combination of paper and photography. All my testing recipes are on paper in my book. I then photograph the fired tiles and also photograph the page in the book so I can easily look at them side by side. Also, you can't break the tiles once they are digital. That's why I started doing it this way, I dropped a couple hundred tiles on the floor and spent a pointless week gluing them together again.... I haven't started doing it yet, but it's also a good idea to photograph the kiln log for the relevant firing as that can have a big effect on the glaze. here's an example of what I'm doing currently https://www.flickr.com/photos/expatat/albums/72157653239150013/page8
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  5. I think what Benzine may have meant was that if you do the original casting with plaster, you can then use the plaster cast to make the ceramic piece. This allows for making multiples (for grandparents etc) and you can use any type of clay you like with the plaster. It's an age old pottery technique. You'll get a much higher quality cast than you ever could in one go.
  6. This is just a guess, but might be worth trying. Sodium silicate is a deflocculant ie stops particles from sticking together. Traditionally when you make terra sig, you use this feature to force large heavy particles settle out and remove them. If I remember OM4 is so fine, you don't need to do the separation step (correct me if I'm wrong there), so don't add Sodium silicate to start with. ie just use an OM4 slip with colourants. If you still do the separation stage add acid to neutralise the sodium silicate. Vinegar works good. I've only used the vinegar trick to process hand dug clay, so not too sure how well it will work with sig. The other thing you could try is decreasing the water content of your final sig. This increases the effective density of your sig so that it can suspend larger particles. Let us know how you made out. I'm curious.
  7. I'm not well versed on what else is out there, but the software for Silhouette cutters is free to download and has a reasonable set of simple tools including tracing. I haven't used it alot as I still work in illustrator, but the interface is fairly simple and straightforward.
  8. This is my son Mason "helping" me prep clay we dug from our yard when we lived in New Zealand. Wow, just realised its been over a decade since then....now I feel old
  9. It's not the proper way, but I've had good luck with filling in the line the traditional way and then letting it go bone dry. I then use steel wool to clean back the excess slip. Usual health and safety warning apply.... Also not great if you then want add more lines of other colors etc. Hard to get decent line quality on bone dry ware. Cheers, Pat
  10. Hi Dick, I'll definitely try that, it looks promising. Hi TJR, Sure do, It's Gerstley Borate 55% EPK 30% Silica 15% I have photo's of test tiles for it here https://www.flickr.com/photos/expatat/albums/72157655310503700/page1 You're right, BaCO3 does fix it, I noticed I did a line blend (test 39 in the album) and about 4% seemed to fix it. Just not sure if the Ba will mess with the colors of Mason stains. I'm really trying to formulate an 04 china painting base. I had some great relatives bring me over a bunch of different Mason stains when they visited from Canada (we can't get Mason stains here either...), I had heard the tech of stains had much improved, so I though I would see if they now worked at ^10 reduction.....Not really....Undaunted, I now want to try making up China Paint-like 04 colours to apply over my ^10 stuff and re-fire in my bisque.
  11. Hi, I'm wondering if there are any lowfire gurus out there that can help me. I usually do cone 10 redn, and don't have many lowfire recipes that don't include some sort of frit. In Malaysia there are no suppliers for frits (or even wollastonite)...I can get Laguna Borate though, so I need to work with that. I was thinking of trying an old Birdsall-Worthington recipe based on Gerstley, I had trouble when I tested it years ago as it had some scumming problems (but that might have been Gerstley related). Anyway, any suggestions would be appreciated. Thanks!
  12. Oh, also meant to mention with your setup having the bricks on top. Be careful when you shut the kiln off. These updrafts suck cold air though the kiln like mad. Any gap in the top will allow cold air to be sucked in from the bottom. I lost half a kiln load of bisque a few months ago because my pilot light went out/and shut all my burners off. I didn't have any damper at the time (it was bisque) and the crash cooling caused alot of pieces to crack. (of course I should have been checking the kiln a little more often, but "Game of thrones" was on....). Even without that extreme though, it's generally good to cool slowly from final temp, to give the glazes as much time in liquid phase as possible. I use an old piece of kiln shelf to help seal it up as the supplied "damper brick" doesn't completely cover the flue (at least on mine)...
  13. Cool trick Rex. Thanks. No idea how you did it, which is of course what makes a good trick I suppose. It's ^10 reduction on LPG. I got the 2831 with an extra ring, so a 2834.5 I guess. Nothing succeeds like excess, or so I've heard. Makes it a bit tricky to load though . I don't normally use the square shelves, but had a lot of flatware and thought what the heck...Glad I did, firing was one of the better ones so far. I used 6in posts on the bottom layer and 3" /4.5" the rest of the way up.
  14. I suspect it's the evenness of the reduction people have trouble with. Mine reduces very well on the top 2/3's, but is a bit oxidised on the bottom. I think that's fixable if you wanted. I agree, oxidation is the harder one, even wide open there is still a lot of excess flame at the flue so...Other than bisque, I don't fire oxidation,so it doesn't really worry me. I like that you're posting pics, thanks. Can never have too much info. I had a bit of a breakthrough myself in the last firing, I used a couple old oversized shelves on the top layers. Though it was going to stall out, didn't need to damper at all. Took a bit longer to get to temp, but it was reduced on the top 5/6th of the kiln. I had heard that before, about putting an empty shelf below the flue... There are pics of the loading here; https://www.flickr.com/photos/expatat/albums/72157655647221301 Sorry, haven't figured out how to paste photos here out of Flickr/Pinterest... Oh, also sorry, just looked at the photos and I forgot to upload the shot of my monitor tiles (I put a shino and a copper red test tile on every shelf to gauge the reduction). I'll try to find them and upload.
  15. Not sure as we're using different software, but I've found that if you increase your contrast (or even convert to a bitmap) in your image editor first, the tracing works much better. You're right, various shades of gray confuse the tracing programs, there is more control if you define what is black and white yourself. Not sure if that was the trouble, hope it helps.
  16. wow, I see what you mean about the price... I wonder if it's Deneba's code under the hood. Seems to happen a bit, I noticed that they were selling ACDsee as well, which used to be a good free app....A friend was showing me Corel Painter the other day, it's almost exactly identical to the old Fractal design Painter, just rebranded... In the day, Canvas was an affordable competitor to AI, with the same level of performance. Times, they are a changin.... I agree with your opinion about adobes price point too. I have about as much respect for them as I for heroine dealers. Given that it takes months/years to learn these programs properly, once you're hooked, they know they have you. Sorry, off on a rant.... Spent quite a while on the bleeding edge with digital art.....just gets me going. Sorry
  17. I wouldn't recommend lab testing as it would cost in the order of $20-30 per sample....
  18. Ah, I think that might be the answer. I don't have the fabric blade and more importantly I can't find the thin craft foam here. The only craft foam I've found in these parts is fairly thick, ie barely fits under the rollers on the Silhouette..... I should probably shelve the foam idea for the time being. I tend to have that problem, I focus on what I can't do, rather than working with what I can do. Still lots of cool stuff to do with paper and vinyl anyway. As to the Illustrator vs Draw, I only use AI because it's what I'm used to, having started with it back in the 90's. Either will still get the job done. Personally I preferred Deneba's Canvas, but you can't get it anymore...
  19. Pres, I'm jealous. I didn't think about thicker materials when I bought my Silhouette. I now have a burning desire to cut craft foam as I think it would make great stencil material (not to mention other non clay sculpture projects...), but have not yet managed to cut anything thicker than heavy cardstock. If anyone knows how to make it work, I would love to hear about it. As to the software, I use illustrator. It has a steep learning curve (ie not very intuitive until you get used to it), but quite powerful for this type of thing. It's tracing functions are very good (ie converting a jpeg/photo etc to "vector" art), not sure I would recommend it to start with though as (like all adobe stuff) it is pretty overpriced..imo...
  20. I've just started using a Silhouette for pots. Its pretty sweet. So far I've just been stencilling slip at the leatherhard stage, tried a bunch of different media, right know I happiest with plain paper or non-adhesive vinyl. An invaluable trick I learned from a graphic design tutorial is to first stencil with your base media, then stencil the colour. It fills all those annoying gaps first, so there is all most no cleanup. There are a bunch of example pots in the below link, under June 2015 first and 2nd firings; https://www.flickr.com/photos/expatat/albums
  21. We're metric here so apologies, I fire off of a 50kg (I assume that's the 15gal size, we used to call them 100pounders in Canada) and a 14kg (bbq size) using a 2 line manifold to switch back and forth. I mainly try to use the smaller bottles as they are cheaper per kg here, but need to keep it in a water bath to prevent freezing (and the temperature here is always 30C (90F)), so it may be tricky in a cooler climate. If you go with the smaller tanks, at a minimum you would want a manifold so you don't need to relight every time you switch out tanks.
  22. Ha haha Love it, might want to clarify that a little Potters are already a bit suspect... Giselle: It's just a personal taste thing because I've never had an extruder. I pull all my handles, so I tend to look at extruded handles the same way people who throw look at slip-cast. Honestly, I think extrusion is fine though. I was just trying to make the point that it's all just lines in the sand and knew a lot of people extrude handles. Thought I might touch a nerve. I often start thinking extrusion is great around my 15th mug Especially here, where you're lucky to sell a mug for $10....
  23. Lots of good advice above. I would add, watch your ankles (the first inch or two from the bottom). These are often where the extra clay ends up. Is it pc to say cankles? Anyway, you'll see it (if it's happening) when you slice your cylinders as Grype suggests.
  24. No, I don't use the Ba mattes much either (I tend to fire redn where they aren't quite as nice.). They are a horrible texture for food surfaces anyway. I wouldn't slide a fork across it twice I agree about the form. But that really complicates the question. As an example, even if Ba leaches into soln., sulphate is a very common salt and present in most food.In the presence of sulphate, Ba will precipitate out as BaSO4 immediately, and as established is not problematic...So is it safe? The difficulty now is the "negative proof". Positive proof is easy, if you shoot an arrow at a person and they die, it's dangerous. If you shot an arrow at a person and they aren't hurt, does that mean shooting arrows at people is safe? How many arrows would you need to fire without hitting before you decide it's safe. Combine that with the fact that we can now measure chemicals down to amazingly small amounts and it's almost impossible to declare anything absolutely "safe". How much arsenic is it safe to have in drinking water? we would all answer none. 30 years ago the least we could measure was 1 ppm (part per million) and now we can easily go to 1 ppt (part per trillion) or less. Water that we would have said had no (measurable) As. Now that same water could have as much as a million ppt As... Sorry, just realised I was heading off on a rant from my previous life, I'm a retired analytical chemist.. It's a debate we as a society need to work through, hopefully we use data to do it. But I have a feeling I'm preaching to the choir. So would I drink coffee from a Ba (or lead for that matter) glazed mug myself? (assuming I knew the recipe/firing conditions etc). Yes. Would I ever state that it was safe to do? No. Do I want to be the one in court trying to prove the safety of leachable Ba in glazes? No. So much easier to stick with liner glazes. As a side note, strontium is used as a toothpaste additive for sensitive teeth. No, there isn't much low level toxicity data on strontium.?!?
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