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saltedfire

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Everything posted by saltedfire

  1. Most gas kilns will soda fire once you adjust the vents / flue. I have a wood train kiln that I'm able to salt fire. The down side is that the salt eats the bricks. Every kiln takes a different amount of salt to get a good coating. Once you get used to the kiln just about all the loads will take the same amount of salt.
  2. I will admit that I have 7 employees and the lowest paid is $12.00 an hour. Most of us are family members. The capital investment to build the building came from selling my grandfathers assets, but from year 2 we were making a profit. With COVID-19 we did not lay off anyone, but we cut hours of a bunch of our employees to 32 hours a week (still getting full benefits). We will make a profit this year, but were only buying consumables. Inventory storage is tricky in any business, but can be a necessary evil and a lot of the new thoughts on inventory control say other wise. Good luck to you.
  3. I find our local sale increase right after we do our first wood kiln firing. I just did my first wood kiln firing and it has increased our local interest a lot. Were doing a parking lot sale this weekend. My daughter with downs syndrome sells 95% of her stuff online. She post her stuff every other Friday at noon, she's sold out by Sunday at noon, and everything gets shipped Tuesday. She spends 25 hours a week working on pottery, 8 hours a week on her store listing, 8 hours a week on social media, and around 8 hours packing and shipping every other week. The first year we paid someone to work with her on the social media and the store listings. If we would not of paid someone to teach her how to deal with the internet stuff it would not of worked out. I would make as much as you have room to store. If you bisque your pottery I would do it as you go. That way you are able to change up the color paterns biased off whats selling at the time. I spend the beginning of the year in mass production, start firing the LPG kiln around July load after load, and early fall switch to the wood kiln. Our local sales increase the week after every wood firing. I sell to a few interior designers and they mostly buy in the fall and spring from what I have found, but with a stock of stuff raedy to fire I can get them what they want with a short lead time. Between my 3 kids they run a LPG kiln load every 2 to 3 weeks.
  4. About 15 years ago I had a gust potter for a winter and we did a few tumble stack firings in the kiln. I know it's going to take a few firings to get the flame path right. I was mostly wanting to crash read or watch to help bring back information. I'll play around with it one day.
  5. I ended up loading the front with a bunch of tall stuff like I normally do. I woke up this morning to an email from a designer from up north with a list of the type of stuff shes looking for. I would rather do what I'm 90% sure I have a sale for than something that might not work and I might be able to sell right away. I just stuck a weed burner in it on low. I'll toss some wood in it about 3am and bring it to life.
  6. Thank you for the link and YouTube link. There is not a lot of information out there that's easy to find. I'm going to tumble stack in the front part of my train kiln. I'll be stacking it in the morning. I stacked the back of the kiln today. I would not be doing this, but I have a guy that's bean after me to makes him a bunch of peaces.
  7. I have been looking for some information on Tumble Stacking. I must not be using the right search terms because I'm mostly finding info for stacking wood and bisque firing. I'm not finding much for wood kilns. Any one have any good links?
  8. It's one of the 3 things about my daughters Downs Syndrome that drives me nuts. EDIT I don't want this to be a thread killer, that's why I tried to pass on saying anything.
  9. I tried looking up the brand and could not find any information. I would say there not firebrick. They might hold up to some firings, but who knows how long they would last. They would make a great outer layer for a kiln. Where I'm at a pallet (510ish) of old clean brick go for about $350. People go down to the river banks after a flood to collect them. Some brands are worth more than others.
  10. ABD is right. As long as the glaze / clay fit is right your good to go. I like a flat bottom bowl so the beaters don't bash the sides as much, I think this also keeps the stuff inside the bowl.
  11. I think mine has to be kiln gods. My daughter has been making them for me for the last 12 years or so. She 100% flips out if the is not a new kiln god for every firing. I think we have 300+ of them in custom display cases in the store. Most of them have been glazed and fired. She has a display case in her room that is also full of gods. There is a gaylord about half full that's hidden way that she dose not know about. I think she learned about them on YouTube.
  12. My daughter has a companion animal (Border Collie) that has nibbled on clay trimmings for 4 years so far. She will only go after the trimmings if she has not been around clay for a few days. If shes been around the clay every day she will not go after the trimmings even if you toss some at her. We have talked to the vet about it and told it's going to happen if shes around clay. I have seen her drink the slop water a few times when her water bowl is 5 feet away. She hates the glaze room and tries to lay down, but ends up laying right out side the door.
  13. As far as your issue. You might want to try 2 gauges. Set one on the X and one on the Y about 1/4 to 1/2" from the target. I don't think I have ever thrown a plate using a gauge, but I would think the gauge would be set at the point you want the wall before you fold it down. If the wall height is right, You fold it down at the right spot, then I would think you would have no issues. As far as the "purchased a throwing gauge". A wooden dowel, all thread, a stick, or a window blind adjuster rod works great. Attach a 2x2 to the pan of the wheel and clamp your "stick" to the 2x2. It's very adjustable. Every one is somewhat different with gauges. I do a lot of multi peace bigger stuff and will put my hands from 3 to 7 so I like the gauge at 2 so It's in my eyesight at all times. Having the gauge so close to where your hands are dose not give the clay to settle back down before it gets to the gauge, but with time With smaller stuff 1 to 9 works fine. My son puts his gauge at 7 to 9. He says it's the best point due to the clay has time to settle back down before it goes back into his hands. My daughter keeps her gauge at 11 to 12. She only dose soup bowls and coffee mugs.
  14. I'm in VA. Mid west. It's called Shenandoah Valley.
  15. I will not do any events until there is a safe vaccine that the masses have taken. My family has a history of vagal reactions to vaccines and I was useless for about 24 hours after my flu shot. I'm not looking forward to the COVID shot. With schools and collages opening back up the numbers are going back up fast. There are a lot of stores with in 80 miles of me that are having staff test positive and are shutting back down. We moved to mostly selling on line, 2 local stores, by appointment for some people, and we have done a few popup parking lot sales. I had to file 2 credit card disputes to get back my booth fees. I will only pay booth fess by credit card for this reason. The more charge backs a company gets the harder it is for the company to negotiate terms with the credit card companies. I'm one of the few stores that have not opened back up to the public yet and do not plan to any time soon.
  16. I know one of Simon Leach's video's were posted above, but you would learn a lot from him after watching a bunch of his video's. https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCe9BhFmxdS1TWAhyU5xF0rw
  17. I know. I just over looked the amount of reduction in the first few post and that's why I kept pushing the VFD. Once it hit me That's why I calculated out what a 800 rpm motor would would do to my kick wheel and I'm hoping the OP would do the math on there kick wheel. I have at least 2 VFD's in my pottery. There is a good chance there are more in my HVAC and my lift. The first one is to control the rpm in my mud pump. The other one is to run a 3 phase motor off split phase power. I know rotary phase converter is normally used for this. There are a few manufacturers that make split phase motors that are made for low speed VFD applications. As most potters are not going to need a ton of torque so cooling would be a huge issue if the right motor and VFD was chosen. Yes low RPM and high torque would cause a ton of heat that would not get the needed air flow to cool. I would have this issue as I like I do a lot of very large items. I would think for people to have this issue they would also have barring issues with there kick wheels like I do. I did do some looking a few posts ago and some of the motors split phase motors made for low speed VFD will work down to 25 rpm as long as they are low torque applications.
  18. I over looked the gear ratio of putting a motor with a tinny puck on the end of the kick wheel. Depending on the size of the kick wheel and the size of the puck with using an 800 rpm motor there would be no need for a VDF. The calculations I did biased off one of my kick wheels would max out at 160 rpm. It looks like pottery wheels max out around 240 to 250 rpm depending on the brand. I never reverse my wheel and do not know any potters that do. I have watched 2 on YouTube that will, but I can not think of who they are right now.
  19. A VDF with the right motor will get what you want. I have no clue as to what direction to point you in. If you know any plant maintenance workers or plant electrician would be good people to talk to.
  20. I have a 85 year old filter press and 35 year old filter plates. The last time I checked into modernization was 10 years ago to get the plates that have a chamber in the plates you can pressurize. With out that the moisture consistently is not even with in each flake. I have also found that the bottoms of each flake behave differently than the top half of the flake in the cone 10 to 11 range; I might be able to get fixed adding another mixer to the tank, but would still have the moisture issue. We have 2 self feeding pug mills that the clay goes through. The first on will pug 800+ pounds an hour. The second is a de airing pug that will do 500 pounds an hour. I don't like to do anything under 7 pounds hand built or thrown. I like the challenge of the larger the better and the "clay guy" keeps me a few tubs full of 5 and 7 pound logs at all times.
  21. I did not know they were that easy to get. I have been google searching the wrong terms and only getting the dry ingredients. I now see the company 100% of my clay stuff from has 2 different cone 6 stoneware mixes. Thanks Min for getting my brain to think out side of it's normal box.
  22. Google "motor drive kick wheel". It's a motor with a wheel on the end that runs along the outside of the kick wheel. I'm sure it has a VFD of some type. The gear reduction would be huge. A lot more work, but would last a long time. A motor 2 gears, chain, chain guard, and a VFD (variable frequency drive). You might need to cut the shaft to get a gear mounted to the shaft and should replace the bearings when your in there. You would need to do a bit of reading and math to get the right gear reduction on the gears so you don't kill the motor. You would need to get a motor that can handle a VFD.
  23. I ran the cone 6 slip through the filter press today, pugmilled the 3 cakes, and bagged it up. My daughter talked me into taking a few pounds to play with. It was usable, but much different from what I'm used to. I'll re pugmill and see how she likes it next week. I will say something leached out of the mix driving up the GH of the water I used. Is there any good dry premixed dry cone 6 stoneware clay?
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