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About Pres

  • Rank
    Retired Art Teacher
  • Birthday 08/20/1949

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  • Location
    Central, PA
  • Interests
    Camping, kayaking, family, travel, Art in general. I have a small studio in my garage. Two electric kilns, two wheels, wedging table etc. I am primarily interested in cone 6 Ox. but like to see what is going on at all ranges. Read about ceramics voraciously and love the feel of the clay and throwing. Have to admit that my greatest joy is in the making, not the glazing. That said I do mix my own glazes, some of my own formulas, some borrowed. Retired from teaching art, in 2009 after 36 years, taught ceramics 34 of those years.

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  1. Most pugmills will use the pressure of what comes behind to push through the last few inches. If your clay is too wet, or too dry, run again with appropriate additions of either stiff or wet clay. It may take a few runs to get the right consistency. When I was mixing clay for students, I always kept two barrels of clay, one with slaked down slop, and one with clay recently used and thus stiffer. Time and experience with pugging is probably the best solution, but there is little you can do to harm the pug mill as long as you only put clay into it. . . .Unlike a student who wondered if it would
  2. Add a bit of water, and let it set over night. best, Pres
  3. Nice subtle surface with layers of depth. Really love the natural feel to these. .. . if on a beach it would be a keeper, but to see it like this how could anyone pass it up! Kudos, best, PRes
  4. @Sorcery, As much as I would like to agree with you that finding a new clay body is not the answer, I will agree that maybe not in this particular instance. That said, over the years of research and experience with wide range, and narrower range bodies, I have found that I do better with the narrower range clays. Absorption rates for clay bodies should be posted, along with shrinkage rates at different cone temps. These criteria allow one to compare various clays before purchase. Standard Ceramic has always been good about posting these criteria. When in doubt about choosing a new clay,
  5. I also agree with @Min that the clay body is to wide of a range to use for a mix of ware. It would be more preferable to find a body that is of a narrower firing range. Maybe one of these if wanting to stay with Continental Clay: Mid-Fire White Stoneware - Wet Cone 4-7. Versatile, economical cream colored clay Mid-Range Oxidation Body - Wet Cone 4-8. Specifically formulated for workability on the wheel.
  6. Syvanis, Welcome to the forum.. . . .you may find much of what you need here. When searching for answers, try searches on the home page. This will search all forums for you in answering a question. Yes, your ^6 cone was too much. . . . what was the condition of the cone after firing? Did you use a full size cone, mini cone or a bar? When ordering next get bars for ^6 and ^06, easier to assure accuracy. Get yourself some books and read every night. One I would suggest, and I kept at hand every day was The Potters Dictionary of Materials and Techniques. This is a standard for understanding
  7. Hate to say it @Min, but often the demonstration is meaningful, especially to HS students. Weird is also endearing at times and the lesson learned is specific to the clay itself. best, pres
  8. Before you do anything, a few questions: When held in one hand, by the base, when rapping lightly with a screw driver handle or like object, does the piece ring, or thunk? On the underside of the piece or other unobservable area, can you scratch a groove into the clay with a hard metal point like an etching awl? Does the piece absorb much water when dipped part way into a bucket of water? If these answers to these tests are: ring, no, and no, then I believe your kiln reached more than temp, and the piece may be glazed without another firing. When glazing I would make cert
  9. Hi folks, there has not been a new question occuring in the QotW pool so I will bring forth a new one. I have been getting back into the shop of late as I have started bowling again and time is limited. However, I was assembling chalices, both pouring and regular, for communion sets, and found them going together very well, with the use of the a slight change in plumbing chuck on the GG. My original chuck had a taller rise of @10". I decided I did not need that height for the stem to fit into when trimming them, so I cut off 4" to make the pipe section 6" tall. Much more stable, and easier t
  10. On the other side of the discussion is the fact that things can be learned from using "failures". I have often used a mug, bowl or teapot that I did not like to see how it worked. Often you learn that a quirk in a handle even though visibly does not look good actually feels good. So, if it does not leak, if it holds up, if it is not going to endanger your health. . . try it for a while, learn about it, and then discard it. best, Pres
  11. Christina, alas, I think you have to make a judgement call on this. Even though these menders will work part of the time, it is not assured. Most of us that have worked over the years have found it best just to redo the original work. Hard for those starting out, but most times the best answer. This question has been brought up many times, and a query on the main page will search all forum strands. Here is one strand that covers the topic similar to yours. best, Pres
  12. I have been using bowls fired at ^6 with different ^6 bodies, and all of them are holding up very well. Some of these bowls are over 20 years old, and my wife uses a mixer in them for whipping cream, mixing and baking buffalo chicken dip, and many other things that need to be mixed such as cookie dough. best, Pres
  13. To all of you out there in the west coast zones, STAY SAFE! best, Pres
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