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Everything posted by Hulk

  1. With respect, Mark_H, I disagree. Swimming pools require constant, else near constant circulation and (seasonally) heat. With net metering, one may easily "bank" your 92 kwh within a reasonable time, e.g., our son's system is generating ~35kwh/day this time of year, of which they are using about half of that*. Worth it, that's key. We figure that we'd recover the outlay for our (small) system within eight years, however, as we run an electric car, more like 4.5 years, however II, as electric rates have gone up considerably, just over four years flat - a year ago. *Granted, they go through most of their "banked" power during the short days, which are quite short, as they are well North and in a canyon - "just sayin'"...
  2. I've had some improvement (with fizzing - very small bubbles) from extended holds at ~1500F in the bisque fire, both up and down, with powered kiln vent supplying a trickle of "fresh" air, adequate oxygen being important, so the authorities say (powered kiln vent also really helps reduce the fume load in the studio; I've set up a hood with a 400cfm to catch most of the rest as well as most of the waste heat as well...). Other adjustments for the fizzing red and black clays (I'm no longer buying black clay, but will continue with red!): i) drop and hold in glaze schedule - drop from peak temp to 100F below peak, hold there for an hour, then slow drop to 1850F before turning off the heat and powered vent ii) lower peak - I'd started out shooting for a cone 6 bent alla way over, now I'm shooting for cone 5 bent to "proper" position for red and buff clays. iii) bubble clearing glaze - some glazes clear the bubbles better than others; for clear, I've found Wollastonite Clear works fairly well. The few colours I'm using all behave fairly well. Here's a start on background/related info, which may be helpful, tmi, or somewhar in between... Drop-and-Soak Firing (digitalfire.com) Blisters (digitalfire.com) Surface Tension (digitalfire.com)
  3. If local power company does "net metering" - where your meter runs backward when solar is producing more than is being used - you can easily "bank" your kiln runs. We're still on 100% "net," however, many power companies are not doing straight deals. Eighty percent - get back 80 kwh for 100kwh - is common. Another issue, sizing, it's not always possible to get a big enough array to cover periodic events - like firing - without having the billing history. Our array, for example, is sufficient for running the house and charging the car, but not enough to cover periodic kiln runs. My take on battery storage, makes good sense at least two ways, i) where there are significant power outages, the storage can get you through; just use less than your solar array generates (minus loss) each day, and ii) where the power company doesn't do straight metering, the storage and loss costs can eventually be recovered. I'm saying at least two ways, for there are several other arguments for battery storage. There's an energy hit in stuffing into, then pulling out of the battery (loss), so there's that to consider as well. Net metering is more cost effective, and no additional outlay. As for calc, looks like I'd need five Powerwall 2 units to run my kiln, but it wouldn't run the kiln long enough for a glaze fire, let alone a bisque!
  4. Was just considering steel studs for upcoming project at our son's house - they compare to (fair quality) wood, pricewise. Likely will stick to wood (pressure treated), for same reasons galvanized steel isn't so popular - tooling, familiarity, simplicity. Building a studio, from the ground up, I'd consider all materials, but likely fall back to wood frame, else steel stud framed over block wall, rammed earth, straw bale, concrete bunker... Hope it comes together for you Pye! You might get lucky and find a deal on reclaimed/used lumber out there in Nowhere...
  5. Mixing Pugmills - Equipment Use and Repair - Ceramic Arts Daily Community There's more archived here... Elsewhere: Pugmills and Clay Mixers: Six Key Considerations to Make Before Buying (ceramicartsnetwork.org) https://bigceramicstore.com/pages/info-ceramics-tips-tip75_pug_mills_clay_mixers clayart - subject 'tools & equipment - pug mills' (potters.org) I've found ClayArt helpful for some topics (e.g. lithium in glazes).
  6. Good question! ...am seeing listings $200-400 for than'n - mostly dated listings... ...am curious how the pedal/rope control works!
  7. I would like them back, particularly the configurable one - mine read "Tom" - which be my actual real given name. The positive reaction count, meh, I don't care as much 'bout that, still, bring that back too.
  8. Hi Dianna, Hope someone has suggestions for that particular clay! My guess would be that glaze for dark brown should clear bubbles well. I've had good results with "Wollastonite Clear" over red and buff clays. Guess #2, wouldn't expect the cone 05 glaze to behave well at mid-fire temperatures; if you try it out, perhaps limit the test and put a cookie under it?
  9. I still have the little round sponge that came with my (first) tool kit - it's a bit worn now; since, have taken Bill Van Gilder's advice and cut large sponges to handy sizes/shapes.
  10. Glazing has been much more fun for me since learning to: screen out lumps; to stir thoroughly and as frequently as required; consider specific gravity and thixotropy; take notes and leverage same. From there, building some skill, that is, glazing a few hundred pots -> a lot less mess, more nice even coatings, much less dripping and sheeting. Perhaps, given many thousand more pots, one could become proficient? I'm sticking with specific gravity and thixotropy being companion topics, like, uhm, perhaps yeast and sugar in baking; the yeast creates the bubbles, however, no bubbles without sugar. How to measure thixotropy, per prior, I have my method, which echoes Mr. Hansen's observation in his video on the subject. Try stirring your glazes, then observe the mass of revolving glaze as it slows to a stop; compare to Mr. Hansen's - after the adjustment - in his video. This thread (or similar thread) was mentioned, above Flocculation and specific gravity - Clay and Glaze Chemistry - Ceramic Arts Daily Community I use a kitchen whisk - modified to chuck up to my (new lightweight DeWalt!) cordless - to thoroughly stir glazes, and a long square cornered scraper to get the sides and bottom corner. From there, a large hand whisk, periodically, for that bit of watery at the top o' th' bucket. If I happen to run across a powered mixing stand - a lab mixer - or something like it, cheap, I'd snap it up, on account o' with enough power and time, screening could be eliminated, as several others have pointed out (in other threads). Glaze on!
  11. We can measure specific gravity fairly accurately, and it is also fairly easy to control. I'm noting SG in my glaze notebook - one less variable! An inexpensive plastic 100 ml graduated cylinder and a decent scale does it. The seven (or eight?) glazes I use most range from 1.36 to 1.48 SG. Would thixotropy and specific gravity be considered together? Per Mr. Hansen, "The secret to all of this is not intuitive. It involves adding more water and then gelling the slurry using a flocculant (vinegar, epsom salts, calcium chloride) to reach a point at which the slurry is both creamy but also thixotropic. Being able to measure the specific gravity of the glaze slurry accurately is very important in accomplishing this." * More water, aye that. Does a wetter glaze require a bit longer dip to get the desired thickness? ...a bit more time, a bit less rush? Does one gain back the time (and more) by dialing in the "gel?". Measuring thixotropy, perhaps not as straightforward as SG; I stir clockwise (easier on my wrist) to the meter of Positive Vibration, looking for the mass of glaze to turn about three times before coming to a stop, and "bouncing back" altogether. At the other extreme, the glaze will continue turning, where there are significant shears - different currents of speed. Some glazes require more adjustment than others... The difference is striking. Adjusting/controlling thixotropy and specific gravity - companion topics, in my opinion! Glaze on. *from this article: Thixotropy (digitalfire.com) see also Thixotropy and How to Gel a Ceramic Glaze (digitalfire.com) "This will change your life" Agreed.
  12. Aha! Neil's link (to Thetis home revolving cake stand, Amaz*n listed) includes an icing spatula! I have one - picked it up at "the bins" (Goodwill) a few years ago; it's one of five most used tools (needle, metal rib, wood knife, bit o' chamois, uhm, aah, oh yeah, sponge, ok, so six, pfft) in my studio, for levering off bats, and smoothing just below the rim onna outside. On cups and mugs, smooths the edge of slip left by the chamois, and imparts the hint of recurve, the lip parking zone. For bowls, much lighter touch, not looking to change the profile, just smooth the transition between chamois mark and ribbed outside... It's an icing spatula! ...have been curious about the intended purpose for quite some time. As for the QOW, no new equipment on the horizon, although a modern kiln may be out over the rim o' the world, somewhar...
  13. We were using straightedge and utility knife to make a significant cut on the logo side, then enough of a score on t'other side to prevent raggedies. From there, align the score with the edge of a board or somewhat, then step on't - rather as you describe, except, perhaps, we were scoring more deeply, and also scoring both sides, and not particularly stomping, just weight to snap. I'm just setting a piece of board on the workbench to wedge on - the edge up against a bumper at the wall - have one for each clay colour. It wipes off fine, then tucks out the way when not in use...
  14. Hi Carmelo! I'm interested to see if you get any useful feedback on your question! My background scada began in pixel by pixel screen painting and keystroke by keystoke processing of user input - scada in c, indeed, running on plc. Integrated scada packages came much later - by that time, I'd specialized in communication protocols, low level troubleshooting, an' the like. Enough about me! Xamarin: Xamarin is an open-source platform for building modern and performant applications for iOS, Android, and Windows with . NET. Xamarin is an abstraction layer that manages communication of shared code with underlying platform code. Here's an article on images in Xamarin, and an Xamarin forum Images in Xamarin.Forms - Xamarin | Microsoft Docs https://forums.xamarin.com/ ".jpg" search not specific enough here - over 130 pages! See also stackoverflow.com, medium.com? Try ".jpg support in Xamarin" via your favourite search engine. There are several regular contributors to this forum that share their extensive knowledge and experience in ceramics; the digital tech discussion I recall seeing here over the last several years had to do with fire control, both the ready-made boxes, and the "home made" as well. There's a bit (pun anyone?) of application discussion here and there as well, user level.
  15. Seattle Pottery Supply, Walker Ceramics ...and Shimpo have teal banding wheels linked to their sites. See catalog page ("Literature" tab) linked here BW-25L - NIDEC-SHIMPO CERAMICS for five models in teal, hrm, that's with Europe selected; toggle the flag to "US" - the colour morphs to blue.
  16. Hi FTC! Most of what I got out of two semesters in the Ceramic lab at the local Junior Collage (Wheel I and Wheel II classes) was social, direct observation of others (varying skill levels - one can learn from both ends o' the mastery spectrum...), and direct inspection of all the work, both in progress and freshly finished. The other bit, very important at first, was access to materials and tools! By the end of the first semester, however, I was set up to work at home. All that for two points: a) one can pick up a lot just by being around others also immersed in the process, and b) one can absolutely progress on their own as well. I don't have any online courses to recommend (perhaps others will), however, this forum, books, magazines, YouTube vids (!!!) can provide a lot! Also try to get out and see/feel others' pots when you can. There's a few threads here with links to favourite videos ...ah, here's one! Free Video Recommendations for Potters - Ceramic Events of Interest - Ceramic Arts Daily Community Am liking Florain Gadsby's vids ...and many others as well. Another thought! I'm planning an meet and greet at our house/studio, where I'll invite the potters from our little bayside town (that I know of), and potters in the county I've met, which may turn out to be crickets - it's an idea.
  17. Looks to me that NEC guidelines for continuous load applies to the OCPD as well. ...am seeing discussion regarding 100% rated continuous load CB vs. "standard" 80% rating, meh. ...there have been changes to the language over the years, hence I'm not listing code section numbers... OCPD vendors publish selection tables; the ones I'm seeing reference 80% continuous load reqs. e.g. UL489_US-Breaker_Wire_Size_Chart.pdf (usbreaker.com) Heading up for air now. ocpd over current protection device cb circuit breaker 80 and 125 are inverse
  18. Drop and hold might help - depends on what the problem(s) is/are, eh? Yep, I'm holding at 1500F on the way up and down in my bisque fire, to burn out more stuff, and in the glaze fire, I'm turning to "low" when target temp is reached, then toggling the switches to hold for ...uhm, not remembering if it's half an hour or a full hour (will have to check my notes), then switches to low until temp falls to 1850F. yrmv - others drop more, perhaps 200F, and hold less. Mr. Hansen's article is worth reading, imo. Your bubbles could be coming from the clay - glazes that clear the bubbles better won't show them as much. ...and your bubbles may be coming from the glaze (or both). Deduction can be a friend; firing schedules, clays, glazes. Got pics?
  19. Hi Caitlin! I started out aiming for well heeled over cone six - where the seven cone shows a bit of movement - the red clay came out almost purple, and lots of bubbling. Now I aim for cone five, no hold at peak, but a long 100F less than peak hold, then controlled/slow cool to 1850F afore shutting off all heat. The bubbles/fizzing clears up very well. I'm still bisque firing to cone 04, however, I'm holding at 1500F for a full hour, with ample oxygen/air flow (via powered kiln vent). Also, one clear in particular seems to clear bubbles much better than the others I've tried, Wollastonite Clear (search "wollastonite clear" for pics, recipe, an' more!). More on drop and hold: Drop-and-Soak Firing (digitalfire.com) Commission, hrm, several folk recommend some $ up front, and clear agreements, good recommendations, both. As for how many to charge for, it takes x+n attempts to make x count, whether commission or not, eh? The n includes reclaim, dustbin, repurposed to planter, "second" shelf, and prime but doesn't match - all of which are on the maker, imo. On t'other hand, if commission is for somewhat I/you/we don't make - not of the regular product line (or close to it) - then the requestor, they gonna have't' pay, PAY at at least some of the development, trial, proofing, testing, etc. COSTs. ...my opinion...
  20. My fav blue, Lakeside Pottery Clear Blue, calls for 1.6% cobalt carbonate; next fav, Bill Van Gilder's "Variegated" calls for 1.5%, also some Copper Carbonate and Rutile; his "Teal Blue" - looks Teal to me - calls for 1% and also a smidge o' Chromium Oxide. All three seem very durable, sound glazes. I have made a commitment to clear or zirconium white-ish liner glaze (inside part of cups, mugs, bowls, etc.) for all food ware, which can be a bit more trouble; I'm stickin' with it.
  21. Strainer for paint an' other stuff; air cleaner pre filter, e.g. chainsaw, mini-bike; drag suit after shaving to make a time cut for a big swim meet - takes two pairs. Yep, me done alla them things...
  22. The unit GEP linked comes in sizes; note the letter "S" on the nose portion. For your daily check, palms over the replaceable filters, try to breathe in - the face portion should suck down tight w/o leakin'
  23. Hi MKelly! The matching likely to come down to "glaze fit" - where the glaze doesn't craze (crackles), nor shiver (flake off) due to mismatched expansion*. There could/may be other issues**, however, glaze fit is big. In my (limited) experience, glaze and clay by same vendor does not guarantee a fit! With a bit of luck, you might find someone who uses the clay you selected, that can recommend commercial glazes (or recipes). If you liked the clay and glazes at the community ceramic lab, you could start with those products. I did not like the clay where I got my start, so started a new road there; as for glazes, the instructor copied recipes for me - I use one of them, the red! I've had some good luck with glaze recipes, however, well-behaved clear glaze has been an odyssey... You will find out by testing! Glaze your test wares, then subject them to some stress to see if the glaze holds up. May I suggest you take notes - hard to remember details down the road, e.g. thickness, times, temperatures, how close the crazing (hopefully, none),etc. - to refer to later on... It might take a while to find clay and glaze combinations that work! From there, you might continue to explore and experiment, forever; on t'other hand, you might stick with a few proven combos... *more reading on coe (coefficient of expansion) Co-efficient of Thermal Expansion (digitalfire.com) **Other issues could include how well the glaze sticks, and other application features, bubbling/fizzing, interaction with other glazes, how fluid it is (at peak temp), durability, stability, and more! What makes a good glaze? Ah, indeed.
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