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About Polydeuces

  • Rank
    Advanced Member
  • Birthday 03/03/1988

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  • Location
    Asheville, NC
  • Interests
    Pottery, Tarot & parapsychology, applied ecology & permaculture

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  1. Great! I think that's everything I need to know. But there's one last thing I want to know: If you threw a form, and when it was leather hard quickly filled it and poured out the liquid into a separate container to be measured—would you be able to figure out the volume of the finished piece through the shrinkage? A part of me thinks it would work, as the volume would change at the same rate as the dimensions, right? Thanks for all the advice!
  2. Alright then, thank you! Final, million dollar question. So if I'm making a form, I finish it and it goes all the way through—I've taken notes and have the dimensions pretty much locked in, and I have the correct fluid ounces. When I go to make a mold of that form, is it best to throw a fresh one, and to mold from that? It all seems like dreadfully tricky business! How exciting! Thanks again!
  3. Thanks y'all. @neilestrick: When you say make a few, do you mean all the way to the finish (glaze fired)? Or do you test them while they're still green and take shrinkage into consideration? Doing my best to inform my process—thanks!
  4. How do y'all go about this process? Do you go about it via trial & error? Or do you calculate before making a run of new forms/shapes? I'm interested in making a couple prototypes to make molds from for slip-casting, and I'm shooting for a specific target volume. I found this calculator: https://photopottery.com/volume-calculator-cylinder.php which seems like it may be helpful, though I'm curious about others' experience and if anyone's got any tips for this kind of work. Thanks!
  5. Appreciate all the help! I managed to find a supplier for the kind of lid I was looking for—though I'm also going to have a go at making a few of my own, as well. I'll be posting the results for comparison when I get underway—a few other things to iron out in regards to this project.
  6. Hmm... It looks like for what I'm aiming to do, I might have to try having a go at making one or a few myself. Anyone here ever done it before?
  7. Hey y'all—Not sure where this post belongs. I'm planning out a run of forms that would incorporate a bale wire locking clasp, like the kind you'd see on air-tight storage jars. Only issue is, after running probably 25 different searches, I can't seem to find anywhere that actually supplies *just* the assembly for this kind of lid closure. All I can find is people selling the jar/bottle + the lid assembly. I just want the metal clasp mechanism, rubber grommets and am planning the pieces around those dimensions. So, out of curiosity, does anyone here know where to source hardware like this? Does anyone have any favorite hardware suppliers for adding additional function to their work? Thanks.
  8. Brief update. I contacted highwater and they said that it's not ideal for reduction because of the iron (but agreed it looked very nice) and recommended I smash a few pots to inspect for carbon coring. Based on pictures I've seen in relation to carbon coring, it appears to have none of that going on. Making some "educated" guesses, I would guess that it's #1: Bisque temperature & duration. Probably the easiest go-to at the moment. #2: Ventilation. #3 Tight bisque packs. Will update with any results in the coming weeks. There are only a couple days a week I can fire, and the pots are on their own schedule. Thanks for all the advice & support, y'all.
  9. @Rae Reich Okay, thanks for the clarification. I feel fairly certain that it's not the flame from the burners that is causing the issue, as pots on the center of the shelf are the ones getting toasted. The burners are underneath the kiln, pointing up and on either side of the shelf. To clarify, it's the side of the pots that are facing this "extreme hot zone" where all the gases in the kiln are collecting and making their way, under the floor shelf, across the kiln, and through/out the chimney. The arrangement lined up conveniently with the floor's peephole, and you can see the flames barreling down this horizontal channel toward the chimney—it's pretty exciting to watch! All that said, I worry that if I were to cover this port, or obstruct it in anyway, it would obstruct the gases from leaving the kiln and I'm not so certain if that would be helping the issue or not. Maybe it would! I don't know pyrodynamics enough to really know the best placement to safeguard pots that are close by, without obstructing the exit of the gases. @preeta I suppose in some ways, I am. I feel like a masochist more than anything else. I've been through a lot of tests and I feel like I'm getting closer to making this pottery thing work, yet all the while I can't help but feel as though I'm just kicking the waves of the ocean, if you know what I mean.
  10. Oh dear, if I should be so lucky~ No air lines or any means of injecting air. I use a loose brick in the chimney stack to damper the chimney, usually as it is getting close to peak temperature. I've experimented with reducing earlier for body effect (if that's what you mean), but have found that it can be tricky to get it to climb once the brick is in place. I wish I had a separate bisque kiln. It'd make life a lot easier. I'd totally get a used electric kiln for this express purpose, but I have no where to put it. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
  11. Whoa! That's awesome—thanks for that! I'm going to need to study this a few times, but this will be a great jump-off for additional testing. Thanks!
  12. Hey Rae, thanks for those tips! I'm curious about the bagwall thing. I have a "floor shelf" and on the actual floor of the kiln are two rows of bricks (running parallel) from the chimney flue to the opposite side of the kiln. Basically there's a "port" raised on top of those bricks—so the gases enter the port, run horizontal underneath the shelf, and outside the chimney. The pots sitting on the floor shelf, next to that "port" are the ones that get extra toasty. My curiosity is the placement of said bagwall, and if it would disrupt the movement of the gas? I'm not entirely sure how to adjust air/gas balance with my current setup. I'm running two weed burners. There is a needle valve at the Y splitter on the propane line, and each burner has a flow control valve. Other than that, it's just an adjustable regulator. It's something I've been curious about for awhile. Firing this way, I usually start with low pressure, open the flow valves on each of the burners in the early stages, and then increase pressure, which usually happens around 1800-2000F. Is there a different method that's recommended? Generally I treat the pressure as the primary means of controlling the gas level, but I can't necessarily "inject" air, at least not to my knowledge, without a blower fan. I originally ran with a squirrel cage fan & iron pipe setup, but found it very "cannon-like—" it made me nervous as hell, and I dare say it was very challenging to get a low flame at the early stages of a bisque fire.
  13. @Callie Beller Diesel, thanks for the clarification! I'm always learning something. To answer the more operative question—I have been stacking my bisque pretty tightly. I'm pretty sure the kiln hasn't gone into reduction during bisques, but I guess there's no way to be certain, as I don't have an oxygen probe. There's no flame emerging from chimney nor peepholes, so I suppose that's a plus. So far, my first plan of attack goes with the following procedure: Drill some extra peepholes for visibility into different levels of the kiln, and leave them open during bisque firings. Add some cone packs into different areas of the kiln. Pack a looser bisque. Any parameters around this? Like, how many bowls can I nest safely? Shoot for a higher cone, (I'm thinking I'm going to place an 05 & 04 in there, and wait til the 04 just starts to bend). Soak for half an hour? Keep the gas pressure as low as possible. I've got some leftover bisque from the last firing. Some of the pieces have been glazed, but I'm thinking I'll just rinse them off and have another go with them. (Bad idea?)
  14. Interesting—I hadn't really thought about that aspect. I'll send them an email to check in as to any technical info I can acquire (and will post here). I'm fairly certain that, in the warehouse I had seen a reduction tile—but perhaps I'm mistaken. Either way, it would be a damn shame if I'm simply using the wrong body for this. It just looks...so...nice. The burners are underneath the kiln, pointing up. It's just two weed burners. I'm not really certain what direction I'm going into in the future. My aims, thus far, have been to get my process worked out with what I currently have. My current space doesn't really allow for an electric kiln, and I have mixed feelings about putting one outside (though I do have rain coverage). If I could find a bigger old junky kiln for very inexpensive (prefer free!) I might try and run that. A digital kiln would be excellent, though. Running small firings on gas is kind of exhausting. I'm not really certain—I've never fired with natural gas, but I would imagine hotter. My understanding is that the pressure on propane can be pretty high—I think natural gas is very low pressure, though that's some vague recall. This past glaze run, it was all over. Previously I've ran a glaze fire with this clay body, and aside from some negligible pinholes, it came out pretty clean. It did not happen with a lighter (grogless) body I had been using (which was even glazed thickly with a rutile glaze). 4-6 cu ft is I think technically in a "medium" size. It's not quite a test kiln. On a glaze fire, after having cut the shelves to allow for airflow, I can probably fit about 20-30 pots in there (depending on size).
  15. OH! That's awesome! What was it like for you?
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