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About liambesaw

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    Advanced Member
  • Birthday April 1

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    Bothell, WA

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  1. Jam those miscreants back into shape. My kiln has some droopers courtesy of the previous owner, they don't affect the firings so much, but they sure are ugly. I've tried torching and pinning them but they're just so noncompliant that I have given up. Luckily I have a set of brand new elements, I'm just waiting to install them. I have fired my kiln 41 times since I got it and the dang elements are still more than capable of reaching cone 6 in record time. Come on kiln, let's get along! I think Ill be replacing the thermocouple before the elements, seeing as how I had a shelf collapse last night and it bent the TC at a 90 degree angle. But it still is registering the temperature correctly too, so who knows. Kiln maintenance, the untold harrows of being a self sufficient Potter.
  2. Holy cow mark, you never stop do you? I spent this weekend building a work table / fume hood for my work with soluble salts and lustres. Sulphur, and mercaptans (thiols) are part of synthesizing a lustre overglaze and these are some of the smelliest compounds on earth. I did an open air run of some palladium mercaptan a few weeks ago and you could smell it from blocks away. I decided instead of subjecting my neighborhood to a somewhat regular barrage of rotting smells that I'd go ahead and do it proper. A 350 cu ft per minute fan pulled through an activated carbon filter rated to match. It won't get rid of the smell entirely but will trap a lot of it. At least that's the hope. This combined with an acid gas face mask will hopefully keep me better protected from hydrogen sulfide and other byproducts that are unhealthy to breathe as well. I know it's pretty janky as far as lab equipment is concerned but it actually works so I consider it a win!
  3. Yes wash it, the concern isn't about bacteria or something that can't survive 2000 degrees, it's about metal oxides, dust, etc. A lot of nasty stuff volatizes in a kiln and settles as it cools.
  4. I figure Etsy is a good place to drive sales to, not a place to get sales from. Like if you don't have a web store for your stuff and people are interested in buying what you have, you can refer them to your Etsy. But if you just put stuff on Etsy and wait, the chances of you making sales is slim. So just another tool, don't expect Etsy to promote your items
  5. Yeah. I don't know if we can exert that level of control over the firing and cooling process at home in our gas and electric kilns, it's apples and oranges from what I can tell. Their clay bodies are designed by scientists to fire exact in their system, I'm guessing without free silica in the end product in order to minimize the chances of quartz and cristabolite inversion issues, etc. I'd love a chance to tour a facility like that, I might try to arrange that on my next trip to Japan.
  6. Yeah as soon as they are stiff enough to support being flipped over they get flipped over. I did speed dry them outdoors with a fan so I could wire them off and reuse the bats (I only have 36 bats). Worked out pretty good and I only killed 3 of them while trimming heh.
  7. Might be able to drop a cone 5 with an extended soak on a cone 4 kiln with one caveat: only if the kiln has new elements. Once you get a number of firings onto the elements they'll struggle to even reach cone 4.
  8. Spent the last few nights editing and rendering the video but it's finally done!
  9. Dinnerware manufacturers that I've seen do the super short firing cycle also don't use a normal kiln, it's a conveyor system that pulls the items through a long kiln where different zones along the conveyor blast them with different heats. So the kiln itself isn't crash cooling, the plates just move out of it to cool in a controlled manner. You can look on YouTube for examples, I've seen quite a few factory setups like that.
  10. Don't forget to check this chart to make sure you're meeting all of the requirements for your stain: http://www.masoncolor.com/reference-guide
  11. Could be that the glaze melt is too fluid to stay on the rim. Might try to find a glaze with a more viscous melt.
  12. When I put a foot ring in, I leave a button in the middle that is level with the foot so the middle can't sag as it dries. I compress the crap out of my plate bottoms! Unlike @Hulk I do believe clay can be compressed because it contains water and the water can be forced out. Wire them off the bats after throwing while it's easy, with all the downward pressure of compressing, the bottoms will be really stiff and difficult to wire through later.
  13. You can tell if it's copper hydroxide by neutralizing it, it should precipitate and fall out of solution. It dissolves only slightly in alkaline solutions. This means it would be cloudy regardless of the pH. If carefully dropping some acid (5% vinegar dropwise) into it doesn't bring out a blue cloud of milky copper, we need to keep looking!
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