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Mark C.

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Everything posted by Mark C.

  1. He had a dream deal in Palau as we have talked about-I'm in Singapore for the night after a 24 hours of flying from my small airport to here-only one flight left in early am.
  2. What brand and model did you get?
  3. Well for the 1st time in 45 years of X-mas seasons, I'm taking two weeks off and flying to Bali for some diving. I got all my ducks in a row pottery wise. Two friends are supplying the markets which really move product this time of year-I make my last deliverys today to gally outlets as well. I fly later today on 8 flights round trip and will be back at midnight on the 29th-alsways takes a few days to recover.I have enough mpots to start working on more glaze fires when I return. I just finished 6 glaze kiln loads to make this trip happen. I'm going on this educational trip to learn some new unsderwater lighting tecqniques from a professional underwater photographer who invited me to join him last year then I broke my are two weeks before that trip. He is back in Bali and reinvited me 3 weeks ago. I really had to think that over but said yes and bought a ticket and started ramping even my ramp schedule of production. I'll be away from the discussion for a few weeks. My regular xmas booth pottery sale will start on the 7th as usual. Time to get underwater in some 81 degree water.
  4. thats why I have a small commercial user gas account the past 47 years.And have 3 gas kilns..
  5. Min I do a 8-9 hour bisque and the cost is around $30 or so ,thats not to far off. I pay around a 1$ a therm for natural gas and can bisque 35 cubic feet (lots of electric loads for sure) at around 35-40$ One can see why electric makes no sense for me as a business move. 8-9 tons a year thru and electric and I'd be broke. I rarely use the electric kiln-this year more than most with 12 fires (all bisque) and 21 Car kiln (35 cubic foot) bisques so far
  6. That calculator seems flawed -I know my bisque is higher cost than 15$ for my near 10 cubic footer skutt
  7. (My biggest point is that the ceramic world is much bigger than you realize. There are corners with much higher and much lower standards. Both are valid, if such is required. We aren't all making bowls and mugs. ) I like many points of few myself and can relate to yours.This board is small place for sure and I'm glad you can take other points of view and still be fine with yours. Thats what makes us all better here. I to have some funky planters that work just fine-most I made some other did and they work fine.Your in such a specialty market many thgings just do not apply. I think since your buyers are aware of all things its not an issue. I knew a guy who slip cast bonsai pots out of a stone ware body-I think I may still have one. That market was all down south from our area. He has since passed but it made me aware of that market more than I thought before.
  8. I live where a kilowatt is more like 34 Cents and electric rates are to the moon. Electric kilns make little sense for production work.I fire in electrics for a needed bisques when I have to have more than my gas kiln will fit.Those in the east and midwest get electric for near free I feel.The whole deal is where you live and what fuel costs.For me its natural gas as it cheapest.
  9. Well Bill started this company back in the early 80s and it all started with lotion pump tops made in China. for him He called his company Aftosa. Back then he had a snappy catalog and business started hopping. For us fiunctional potters he had a few items that helped us sell pots. He has great customer service.That business was sold over the decades about 4 times and every time the service went down and the prices went up.At one time I could call in an order and have it next day for very low cost.The prices slowly went up and many items where discontinued. I sourced items from other sources for less as did others. Quainity discounts where dropped. The once thriving Business was absorbed into what was once called Richmond Ceramics as they expanded they bought out Leslie ceramics in Berkley as well recently and a few other long standing ceramic businesses like Brant street ceramics in SF. The renamed (rebranded) them all to Leslie ceramics less than two years ago. Yesterday I got a email that they (the owners) are retiring and closing the doors (I assume they got an offer on the property that was to good to turn down(specualtion on my part )As California property in some areas is many millions and this area is one of them. I have many newly minted friends who are millionaire friends who parents property sold for millions when they passed away in Bay Area and sold out. So if you want anytrhing from Leslies you better hurry as its all 25% off and going as fast as they can ship it out the door. I placed my last order with them on some specialty products (600$) and thought about the 40 years of doing business with a place that will be gone this month.I'm a little sad about it Well I'm downsizing myself to a degree so I can also relate- last call for Aftosa
  10. One note on JB weld epoxy -I recently found out it let go of some stainless metal I had glued when it got hot in summer sun-so be careful is hot gets near it as it can let go .Cactus Pots your photos do not open for me.
  11. I give a box of seconds away at xmas every few years -on a take one basis depending on the issue -usually its to customers but also anyone who sees the sign-nothing thats hurtful or going to not work well. Just pots that are a bit off. I usually do not want anything for them I used to never do this but at my xmas booth if I have a pile of true seconds I have done this before.Its ben a good feeling for those who cannot afford the work as well, during the holidays. This year I do not have any. Seconds are best left to the hammer most of the time.Repairs on functional ware will not stand the test time so why bother.
  12. Yes with the belt off the wheelhead should spin freely-and you can turn on motor and see if the pulley is turning true-same with the larger wheel pulley check for trueness when spinning it.
  13. First check the outlet its plugged into for power-lats the starting point With Brents if the outlet is live there is a fuse on the front or back of control box depending on box. Check this next for continuity (see if its good) let us know if this does not work.
  14. Yes a flat spot in the belt from lack of use-seen that before.You could also get that sound track called whole lotta shaking going on while you are throwing to round out the experience.
  15. Mins qoute(Murphy's #1 Law of Ceramics; if something can screw up it will happen with a custom order.) Is oh so true
  16. Yes it all will be gone no issues as well.
  17. yes make the bottom the pouring part(hole) and flip the mold upside down -the bottom can have the hole in it and will hidden and easy to clean up with both ends clearner as you are not cutting one off on poring end.
  18. I did custom work for decades-no more. I would not consider it nowadays . I had another potter friend say to me that he quit doing that and I thought about that freedom and stoppoed taking custome work about 5 years ago- he was right. I wish I had drawen the line earlier in life. Custom orders are problematic in many ways. I think when you are staring out they seem great but thats never the case really.
  19. Babs I never add anything to my hot wax only melted paraffin .You can use candles if needed
  20. Its a blend of form and function that appeals to the user . Say in a mug the handle feels right and the form feels right as well as the color is good for that user.Everyone has a different value for this but you know when it all lines up for you. The bowl looks like it should weight as much as it does and the way it feels and works makes it just right.The foot looks and feels right and the balance is great between these aspects .
  21. Doing craft show in the beginning is always a gamble. Like riding a bicycle for the 1st time-sometimes it works for a distance other fall off right away. It takes time to figure out shows and markets. It took me 20 years to get that dialed-most do not want to try that long. some shows where dead some meduim a few where good.Live and learn. The setupo looks fine it the customers that where absent.I did a show at a ladies club in a small town for 5 years back in the 70s we thought we where doing great with 300-500$ in slaees for a day . Now that for me would never do today so this also is different for everybody . Speaking of small sales I am part of a small local vender list that a local middle school lets the parents buy out of a catalog that the parents put together for 1 month of sales. They buy wholesale and make the same amout of money as us makers do and the $ goes to the kids activities . I have 1 month to fill the order-it came in yesterday totaling (my share $597 and the kids share is $597)I will fill this order on Monday as I premade all I needed last few weeks (spoonrests and mugs)This is my second year doing this . I keep my prices low so the sales are high in volume.They approached me for this as one parent is a customer.
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