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  1. Hello everyone I've searched through the forum but didn't find the answer to my question: If I want to make handbuild plates (so they wouldn't have any foot) and then want to glaze them top and bottom, can I use any kind of stilt to prevent the plate from wrapping? The plates would be made with stoneware fired between cone 8 and 10. I red about plate setters but that means the plate can't be glazed underneath, right? Is there any way to support the plate even though it's glazed? I know for low fire we can use metallic stilts but I wonder if they would wrap at such high temperatures. A
  2. Hello! New to the ceramic world and I am very interested in delving into Porcelain (cone 6) clay. I'm interested in designing very contemporary and minimal jewelry, however I understand that porcelain shrinks significantly during the firing process. My question is: how would I go about firing Specifically rings? are there certain metal rods that I could use in the kiln, similar to a bead rack that can keep the ring smooth and even during the process and POSSIBLY true to the size once finished? I've seen many of these beautiful rings online and I'm very unsure how to fire them. Also, is
  3. About 10 years ago, I took several ceramic classes and fell in love with the way Strontium Crystal Magic worked with other glazes. I attached a picture of Strontium Crystal Magic Warm with a spray of Water Color Green that I made in a community college class. Fast forward 10 years and I cannot get anything close to those results. The second picture shows the same glazes with a kiln controller set to a standard medium speed firing schedule to cone 5 with a 12 minute hold time. There are tons of nasty little pin-holes, and although I don't mind the color, it is nothing like I was expec
  4. Hello, I'm firing a cone 4 vitrified slip cast body which looks lovely but seems to slump particularly with the larger pieces. I'm going to try firing at a lower temperature but thought I would ask on the forum to see if anyone had any other suggestions. I'm using a fairly large electric kiln which I recently purchased. I also will try taking out the lower plug on the kiln as I heard that helps keep the temperature more even. Any advice would be greatly appreciated! Thanks! Harriet
  5. Ugh, just UGH! I had a huge load to fire for a very important community project. Using a Cone 4-6 stoneware and Cone 4-6 glaze. Normally I fire to cone 5 and let it soak for 5 minutes. The kiln was almost to temp when I left for work this morning. (yes, I know, never leave a kiln, but I couldn't be late to work and the basement is all concrete and it was supposedly almost done) It should have been cool and ready to unload when I got home. instead, at the top of the stairs, I heard it. "cu-lick" "Rats. I thought to myself, I must have a rat in the basement, I would LOVE to have a
  6. Is it necessary to fire to sculpture to vitrification? If firing to cone4, will the sculpture be too fragile? I don't always glaze my items and detail with acrylic paints and don't want to take short cuts in firing to save money, if the pieces should be vitrified.
  7. HI all, I've referred to this forum many times in the last few months, so thank you all for sharing your knowledge with the world. I just touched clay for the first time in August. After a short class, I fell in love with slab building and geometric shapes. In my class, we only used cone 10 clay, SOOO, when I left class and started playing with clay at home, I got Cone 10 clay. Now that I have LOTS of pieces to fire, I'm calling around to studios and art centers to find they they all fire greenware to bisqueware at 04. Can my Laguna cone 10 clay greenware be used for potted plants, vases
  8. Hi all, I'm firing a batch of round, globe-like christmas ornaments. They are almost a closed form, but with a hole in the finial at the end. I've been eyeballing the firing options on some of the ceramic stores, but they don't give much info. I could fire them standing up, with a rod inserted into the finial, but there are metal rod options and porcelain rod options. Which would be better? Or should I use a small stilt? Each ornament is B-clay or porcelain, weighs at most 5 oz. , about 5 inches in length. Fired to cone 10. Advice please?
  9. I need to find the best All-In-One clay for cone 5, great for both hand building and wheel throwing I know. That's a tall order. But I can dream. I have a pug mill and don't want 2 bodies. Problem: I have too many problems with my gas kiln for cone 06 anymore. I'm DONE. I am moving to cone 5. Criteria / Factors: I'm in Southern California I teach 180 high school students grades 9-12, all levels of art skills, so it has to take punishment Not too sandy on the wheel, not too smooth or squishy for hand building Not too dense so it is so top-heavy wh
  10. Hi all, I'm looking for advice on how to achieve a darker charcoal/black carbon trap finish. I'm working with Malcolm Davis Shino on bee mix & coleman porcelain. I have been unable to fire the gas reduction downdraft kiln because of work so I haven't been able to play around with it. This image was taken a while back before I really cared how heavy the carbon trap was (record record record). This is what I'm trying to achieve. It's Malcolm Davis Shino on Coleman Porcelain with wax resist fired to cone 10 in gas reduction. Any thoughts?
  11. Hello All, I have a kiln full of goods and I want to fire it. I am a potter and have been teaching myself how to fire my kiln. So far I have been using the pre-programmed firing schedules. I now want to try a slow cooling schedule. My kiln is a Cone Art and my controller is a Bartlett. I have the firing schedule that I want to apply and I have a simple example of how to program a firing schedule with the Bartlett - but I am confused as to how to use their "9999" cooling rate code. Their example shows using "9999" at the end of a sequence but I want to use it in the middle of a sequen
  12. Hello Community! :-) I am pretty new to ceramics and I am learning new things about this fantastic material on a daily basis. For my latest project I am trying to crack/break up old clay bottles with the principle of the heat shock. Does anyone have an idea what would happen, when I rapidly heat up a bottle (like the one in the picture) to 1800 degrees Fahrenheit ? My wish would be to let the bottle explode and to create many fragments. Is the wall of the bottle maybe too thick (approx. 4mm) to really burst into pieces? Will nothing happen or maybe just one big crack? Or do
  13. Hello, Does anyone have any tips or suggestions for the best way to remove a sculpture that has become stuck to a clay bodied base. The base was sacrificial and intended to stop any surplus glaze from getting onto the kiln shelf. It worked but I'm now faced with the predicament of removing it from something else without damaging the sculpture. Images attached in case I'm being unclear. Thanks in advance for any advice! Carl
  14. Min asked recently in the QotW pool: Kiln stuffers, what does everybody make to fill those little empty spaces in the kiln? Hmm, Min I should have open spaces in my kiln? Naw, just joshing! For over 35 years of loading my HS classroom kiln I had to use every spot of space in the kiln whether loading bisque or glaze. Most of the time we had a pile of sculptural handbuilt projects, and one would set on the shelf, one would be on a brick right next to the first with the overlaps saving space. Thrown bowls were put in right side up, upside down, with things underneath or inside. Mugs were c
  15. Hello folks! I am a porcelain painter in Brazil! I work with china paint for 25 years... This week I lost seven plates in my kiln. Six at a time (Second firing) and another one in another time (fist firing) ... have lost some, rarely, very uncomon one piece or 2 but at this time I am very anxious because is the There have been losses of dishes a few times but so this is the first time ...I'm scared because it's a big order, the biggest one I've ever taken and this has never happened to me ...What could have been?Exaggerated load of the oven? I've done other burns like this and there's neve
  16. My friend and I recently bought a used kiln and wheel. Our first test with the kiln we messed up and fired our stuff to cone 6 (instead of 06). We hadn't had a lot in the kiln, just a few really small cut-out pieces. It took about 6.5 hours to get close to cone 6, but the large 6 cone didn't fully drop, and the cone 7 didn't really move much, so we weren't totally sure if it was fully done. Moving on to our second fire. We had new things to fire, so we bisque fired our stuff (half full with things stacked) to cone 06 this time. Our cone sitter fell out when we closed it (not sure exa
  17. So, ive created this account specifically for help! ive been given two very old electric kilns, seems to be from the 70s perhaps? anyways, one is an American Beauty electric kiln model number: AB18 this thing has four switches and a kiln sitter. seems to be in relatively good condition from what my ceramic instructor had said. Problem is ive never fired a kiln and there is almost zero information on the kilns manual or even the company that produced the kiln. I find that almost unbelievable seeing as I live 5 miles from the city the kiln company was located. If anyone has any further informati
  18. Hi, I have this problem of cracking or clay splitting when throwing in the wheel, pls find the attached picture and also, after firing at cone 08, the clay has a lot of surface cracks and sometimes structural cracks pls find the attached pic, pls advise why this is happening and how to avoid this in future. Thanks.
  19. Just a quick question about re-firing work. I wasn't happy with some details around a logo that I carved in to my pieces so I've fixed them with glaze (and also filled a few pinholes) - my question is whether or not I need to be as meticulous about dust and fingerprints on these like you do with glaze on bisque. I had to hold them firmly and work slowly to fix my glaze errors from the past firing. I'm feeling like that stuff (oil from my hands, dust) will burn off before the glaze melts again since its technically laying over top of a hardened/fired glaze and not absorbing into un-fired
  20. Hi everyone, I recently fired a gas kiln but there was very poor reduction and my pieces (with a celadon glaze) came out oxidised. Would it work to refire these same pieces in a fully-functioning gas kiln? Is there any reason the might not reduce as they have already been high-fired? Thank you!
  21. Hey guys...help! So I have been doing low fire work (jewelry) for years and have just ventured into mid fire work. My question is likely somewhat dumb but here goes. I purchased my first bit of cone 5-6 stoneware clay and had a question about temps. With my work that I have been doing in low fire, I bisque fire to cone 04 then glaze fire to 06. What temp do I bisque fire the stoneware? Not knowing any better, I bisque fired it to cone 5 and then glaze fired it to cone 5 and none of the glazes turned out to look like they were supposed to. Thanks in advance for the help.
  22. Hello I have recently acquired a small kiln for use at home (Hobbytech 40). It works and I’m happy with it for the most part, but when I have bisque fired plates, they crack during firing, down the middle to about halfway across the plate. This must be a fault when I’m making the items. Can anyone tell me what could be causing this so that I don’t waste efforts making anymore to be disappointed when they’re fired? I’ve not had this happen with plates I’ve made in my ceramic lessons. Some are wheel thrown, some are made from slabs. Clay bodies used are lavafleck stoneware,
  23. hello I have just purchased a second hand cromartie hobbytech 40 kiln with an lt3k kiln sitter, having never fired my own work (I have always had a technician do it) I was wondering about the ramping speed to fire stoneware. The kiln has a dial on the side from 1 to 4 and then full, I was wondering how long I should leave between each increase in power. as I understand it too quick an increase in temperature could cause the clay to break due to the steam. here is a picture of the kiln dial. also the Kiln has a peep hole in the side and a vent hole on top, should I leave
  24. Hello, I have been making terracotta tiles & glazing them in the Majolica style. The tiles were bisque fired to 950 and the 3 coats of white glaze applied to tiles with decoration painted on the surface. The white glaze was a white glossy glaze not a Tin Glaze. Pin holing was apparent on surface of glaze before firing and remained after firing to 1080. Anybody got any advice please ?
  25. I'm self-taught and a relative newbie. I am so confused about glaze & bisque firing in terms of venting, peep holes, and/or cracking the lid. I have an electric kiln with digital controller and it's outside so I have no extra ventilating system. My Evenheat kiln has one small hole in the top that does not have a plug (always open) and one side peephole with a plug. 1)when bisque firing, does the lid need to be cracked and/or the peephole open for any part of the firing? 2)when glaze firing, same questions? Thank you for any insights.
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