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About ThisIsMelissa

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  1. I did end up taking a few weeks off from pottery (throwing anyway). My shoulder stopped aching. Last week, while working in the garden, I pulled something out of the ground wrong and that night, boom, shoulder pain. Today, after pottery class.... boom, shoulder pain. With pottery, I notice it mostly when I'm centering anything larger than 4 lbs. I'm quite aware of ergonomics at the PC. My monitor is sitting on a monitor riser at the right height and my keyboard and mouse are also at good positions. I've been in situations where they've not been good and have suffered. This is certainly not the same. So, yes, I'm using Dr. Google to diagnose, but I do also have a friend at an orthopedist's office. When I told her about it (before even mentioning being a potter), she said, "sounds like tendonitis to me. Do you do this a lot" and she put her hands in a position as if she were picking something up. ... basically, a potting position. "Yup, I throw pottery on the wheel." Bottom line, I'm 39 years old and my body is not what it used to be. I need to come to terms with the fact that I'm middle aged and need to start treating injuries properly!
  2. If glazes are 06, then that's as high as you can fire the glaze. It will not vitrify the clay, however.
  3. What if you used a stand made for firing beads? You could put a hole in the tip of the handle.... just a thought.
  4. One guy I watch on youtube throws a lot off the hump. He insists that the reason he gets no s-cracking is that he trims the bottoms very thin... like 3-4mm.
  5. Great news! I got a call today from the kiln repair guy and it's costing me less than $100 to get the old Paragon kiln running.... the one that was given to me by the people I bought my wheel from. I'm super excited, but now I'm a little bugged.... I don't have the faintest idea how to run the thing. Hubby is going to run the wiring for me. I've never even watched someone load a kiln. I don't know what additional equipment/supplies I need. Can any point me to a resource... like "Kiln Operation for Dummies"
  6. On Sunday night, I threw "tall" for the first time. I threw a carafe... about 11" tall. I used a cone 6 white clay from Continental Clay. It's their B-Clay. It was super smooth to throw with. But I will admit that it took 4 tries to get anywhere close to this height.
  7. I'm too young to have these kinds of issues! Since I got my wheel at home, I'm noticing that my right shoulder has an ache.... kinda right inside the joint and sometimes the dull pain goes down to my elbow. I'm 100% certain it's related to more time on the wheel. I asked my friend, an orthopedist's assistant, about it, she said it was probably tendonitis/bursitis of that shoulder tendon/bursa.... But there's not a lot that can be done, short of surgery, which I'm not anywhere close to needing.... that, and NSAID pain relievers (Advil does help). Surely, some of you all suffer from the same issues. Does anyone know any exercises that can help reduce stress on that joint? I'd rather not grow reliant on Advil. I don't like to take meds if I don't have to, and would prefer a more proactive route to helping with this. Suggestions?
  8. So, until this week, I didn't really understand the hubbub about having tools for different clay body colors. But now I'm starting to understand why. I can see how you could have a whole complete studio set up for different clay colors: canvases, bats, wheel, trimming tools, etc. But really, what is necessary? Sponges, buckets and wires come to mind. As do bats--at least the non-plastic ones. Anything else? I've also come to the conclusion that if I'm going to work with different clays, I should probably clean out my splash pan more often. Or, should I just keep slop buckets for the different colors? It seems like this could get to be kinda space prohibitive. Help?
  9. Yes! I took back the Artista and got a previously owned, but never used, Clay Boss. I love having my own wheel! Thanks for thinking of me. Try checking out my thread, ... I guess I'm setting up a studio... or somtething like that!

  10. Hi there! Followed your wheel dilemma for a bit, just stopping in to see if you were able to acquire a new one. :-) Karen

  11. Hi there! Followed your wheel dilemma for a bit, just stopping in to see if you were able to acquire a new one. :-) Karen

  12. I googled her. To me, her stuff looks like underglazes. Many of them can be fired to cone 6.
  13. So, I returned the Artista wheel yesterday and got a previously owned, but never used Clay Boss for a good price that I found on Craigslist. The guy says, "if you want that, you can have it".... pointing to a small kiln in the corner of the garage. Looked pretty old... not sure of the year. Hasn't been fired in at least 6 years as the family has lost interest in clay and glass. It's a Paragon A66B. I called a (different) local company and the technician was very nice. He said I could call him with the particulars and he'd let me know if it's still service-able and whether it was even worth my time. I asked, "so, what if I take it and it's not worth servicing to get it up to par? How do I responsibly dispose of it?" He said, "then I'll recycle what I can for you and what is still useable, I'll keep in my 'graveyard' for when someone might need to service a similar model". Nice! Win-win! I picked it up..... well, the seller loaded into my minivan for me. And I'm going to drop it off at the shop next week. I've still got it in my van, so I asked my instructor this morning, to give his opinion. He said it looks decent. The kiln sitter is missing a prong or 2 It has no stand, I'm not sure if it would need venting or not and hubby would have to run electricity for it..... I was sooooo not prepared to even THINK about a kiln. I've never even helped load a kiln, let alone, fire one!
  14. Success! Thanks to your encouragement! I called the owner today. <firmly, all business. "Hi, it's Melissa. I sent you an email on Sunday night" "Oh yeah, I've been meaning to respond to that. If you're not happy with it, then yes, I'll take the wheel back" .... conversation went on to make arrangements for its return. So, I'm glad I took your advice and didn't let it get me even more angry. I'm returning the wheel tomorrow. ... and yes, my gut told me not to buy it. I shouldn't have bought it. And it turns out a Speedball Big Boss came on Craigslist today. It was never used. Perfect.... except missing part of the splashpan.... I can order one of those myself! Price is reasonable if I can get them to take a little less to leave room for a splashpan. Hopefully, I'll be able to pick this one up tomorrow!
  15. Yes Mark, I appreciated your thoughts. And did take them under consideration. Thank you. My gut told me it was the wrong thing to do right after I'd done it. Perhaps that's why it took me 8 days to set it up. This supplier was unwilling to meet the price on the VL-Lite. He said "that's a good price and I can't match it". He was willing to do a deal on a demo Skutt, but not anywhere near the price I could get from Clay-King on the VL-Lite. And now, with my experience and his demo wheels, I'll not be going that route again. I would hate to burn this bridge, so I'm really hoping the owner and I can work things out. But there is another supplier in town that is nearer to me.
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