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  1. My 6 week online course on Alternative firing techniques begins on Nov. 2-Dec 11 https://www.teachinart.com/alternative-firing.html. see more courses available online at https://www.teachinart.com. Marcia
  2. Hi everyone! I just recently bought a used Cress FX27P electric kiln so I can start firing work at home. So I just recently started my first bisque firing yesterday at 4pm. It was more of a test fire, so I didn't put a lot of work in there, about 15 wheel thrown pieces. There were a couple pieces in there that were not fully bone dry so I set the firing speed at E, the slowest speed. I also put a pyrometric cone (04) in the sitter, 1 peep hole open, and set the thumb wheel to 1, and I set the timer to 16 hours so it can shut off at that time in case anything goes wrong. Throughout the day
  3. Hi, I am using Flax Paper Clay Porcelain ES6000 to make some small flowers and the finished pieces are around 1cm thick at the fattest point. The issue I have is that I have no idea how to go about firing and glazing porcelain. Do I bisque fire porcelain? If yes what temperature should I fire to? Can I fire porcelain in the same firing as other clays (B17C Stoneware) ? Looking on the Scarva website it says the firing temperature is 1220ºC - 1280ºC but I am unsure as to what temperature the clay stops being able to absorb glaze? Thank you so much in advance!!
  4. Hi everyone. I am in need of somewhere I can fire a kiln in Orange County, California. I live in an apartment and don't have the electrical or space necessary to do so. I've been given an old Duncan kiln, in rough shape, from a friend who didn't know how to use it. Looking for someone with a garage or private space to fire this or their kiln, some sort of kiln-sharing or kiln-coop situation. I have studios I take my work to fire to, but it is not ideal since pricing is more than it would be on my own, and since I can only reserve so many kiln loads. I need to be able to fire more frequently. A
  5. Hello, I recently graduated, but while I was in school, (and learning how to fire a kiln) I came across two common issues. The first was that everyone said to use a kiln log. (Although no one had a log handy when asked) And that the act of making a log was cumbersome. (To the point that when a log was found, the most critical data at the end was usually incomplete) So I taught myself how to code, and created an app to solve (my highly specific) problem! https://apps.apple.com/us/app/blaze-kiln-log/id1510609232 (Or search “Blaze Kiln Log” in the App Store) The app is c
  6. Hi!! I have just finished a sculpture of a baby using smooth red clay. This is my third clay sculpture, but first without a teacher to guide me. With my previous sculptures, it was easier to remove the armatures.. there were less detailed areas which made it less traumatic to cut open/join back together. I was also far less particular about my sculptures then as can be seen by the fact I removed the armatures far too early. Is it okay for me to leave the paper inside when I fire it? Also, how slowly should I dry it to make sure fingers, toes and ears don't crack? Any other
  7. Hi, Hope this hasn't been asked anywhere else and I'm repeating a question but I've scoured the internet and can't find much of help... Even though I have studied ceramics at 2 levels, during neither course were we taught about firing schedules... Over the past few years I've been using and tweaking schedules given to me by an amateur potter friend but they aren't cutting it anymore. I've recently been approached by 2 shops/galleries who want to sell my work but glaze faults are making it difficult for me to be happy with results as I can't seem to avoid miniature pinholing and am wo
  8. Hello! Does anybody have experience firing Standard Clay 112 or 182 to cone 06/6? These are the clays that I work with and typically my studio fires to cone 05/5. However, I have recently started working out of home and found a studio nearby that will fire my work, but to cone 06/6. I want to be sure that I like the result before committing to the change.
  9. Hi All! I'm so excited to be joining this forum! After MANY years I am finally working in my own studio with an old, left-behind kiln. My lovely, supportive, engineer husband has kindly built me a space and helped me to refurbish an old Cress electric kiln that was left at our house over 20 years ago. I have two questions: 1. We replaced the kiln setter assembly tube and just tried to test the kiln to Cone 04, but the sitter engaged early, way before the junior cone bent to 90 degrees. Can anyone advise me on how to identify the correct position for the plate that holds up the sitter claw to t
  10. Hi, newbie potter here, I'm having some issue with a brand new Rohde ecotop 60s kiln and I'm not sure if it's something normal or I had bad luck and received a bad kiln. I hope all the experienced people in this forum can help me out. I've just bough a new Rohde ecotop kiln (my first ever kiln) and after ONLY THREE FIRINGS the rope insulation on the outside of the barrel looks burned and the steel ring holding the lid is all stained from the heat. The lid doesn't sit fully on the brick walls letting heat escape, which caused the damage I think. As said I only fired 3 times at:
  11. Hey guys, so tomorrow I'll make a kiln with oil can (yes it's already washed) and pit firing, I'm trying to post a pic of it but the forum sucks at uploading it, so I'll try to explain: The idea is to dig a hole on the ground where I'm going to put the fire (wood and sawdust, and yes, there's room for the oxygen to get in), then I'll put a grill over it where pieces are going to be placed, I'll also put sawdust on them with some wood, then the oil can will be put over them to isolate the heat. That's my idea, what do you guys think? Will it work? Also, there's a hole on the top of the ca
  12. Since March, I haven't been able to fire any of my work because my school is closed, and that's where the kiln I use is. I was lucky enough to be able to bring a wheel home with me and I've been using it every day. So the consequence is that I have an abundance of unfired pottery. I've searched everywhere for an open studio or someone who might let me use their home kiln, but nothing came up. I've considered buying a kiln of my own but I have nowhere near enough money and no source of income right now. Does anyone have ANY suggestions? Please help haha I'm losing my mind!
  13. Dear Community As everyone is self-isolating here in the UK, I'm encouraging my students and others to handbuild at home and I want to enable them to fire without a kiln in as simple a way as possible. It gets very frustrating for beginners to be unable to fire work and I want to maintain their enthusiasm. We are using the kurinuki method so that there will be no joints to break open. I know that there are some Japanese firing methods for low temp work using small containers but I can't find the videos again on You Tube. I've been trawling the internet but not come up with what I am
  14. Hi! I was running a cone 5 glaze with my skutt electric kiln and forgot to turn on my enviro vent. When I realized it was already finished and at 500F. I have the KMT so was able to see a graph of the firing which looked fine, but it did fire in 4 hrs instead of the regular 13hrs. What problems could this cause ??? Could this hurt my kiln for future firings? Vent is on now and another fan in the studio cause it definitely smells. Thanks!
  15. Hello everyone, I am completely new in this field, my work so far has focused on plaster modeling. But soon I would like to start a new project, which requires a lot of knowledge in clay processing. I would like to make two fireplace surrounds (designed in the style of the attached plan), one for a decorative fireplace and one for a real fireplace which already has a cast iron insert whit a brick mantle. I would like to know for the first one, for the decorative one, I need to burn the tiles or not. It's about some large parts, for example 2 corbels 80x20 cm. Also I would lik
  16. When I am firing my electric kiln, I start with the lid propped open about 2 inches and the top peephole out. Then at around 1000 degrees F I shut the lid. The top peephole is open the whole time. I understand that the lid needs to be propped to allow moisture and gasses to escape in the early stages of firing. My questions are: 1) is 1000F an appropriate temp to close the lid? 2) Is it necessary to prop the lid on a ^6 glaze firing as well as the bisque, or only during the bisque (^06) I have been firing this way for a couple years and the pots always come out well. However the lid has
  17. Hello! I’ve heard that you can fire greenware with glaze up to cone 6 in one go- ive never done it myself though. Is this something that actually safe for the pottery? Do I need to do it in a specific way? Fire in a specific way? Any input would be much appreciated!
  18. Hi all! I just finished converting an old electric kiln to gas. The firing will be totally manual, no kiln sitter involved. Having never fired a gas kiln, I know my learning curve will be steep! But I need a few pointers to get started. I want to start out with a glaze firing, ^5, mainly because I don’t have any greenware to bisque right now. I have a few “sacrificial pieces” that I am willing to use to start the learning process. I have a pyrometer and witness cones ready to go. So, my main question has to do with ramping at this point. How fast do I want the kiln to increase in
  19. Hello, The question is how often do you fire your kiln a week? Let’s say I want to bisque fire Monday and want to get a glaze firing going Wednesday after unloading the bisque ware. Is this too much strain on my kiln too fast? Sorry if this seems dumb lol, this is my first year firing my own kiln rather than at school.
  20. Hello everyone, I find your site tremendously insightful and factual, and this is my first post here. I'm a fairly proficient handbuilder and sculptor but have never worked in porcelain. I need to know whether these lentil-shaped hollow beads will fall flat in the highfire glaze firing, with or without glaze. They are slightly larger than a quarter in diameter, and thickness varies from 11 to 13 mm. A classmate at community college handbuilding class gave me the porcelain clay because I just wanted to see whether I prefer it for my hollow beads. They all have holes, not showing in pic. My con
  21. Among collectors of fine yixing teapots the "ring" test is cherished by some to identify "true" zuni yixing clay. It is unclear to me to what extent the zuni technology is about the composition of the clay, and to what extent it is about craftsmanship and firing. Many people say this clay is "extinct" and there will never be teapots like those of previous eras. Could this really be the case? I have tried banging on many pots and having the pot on a soft surface is a must. Isn't this a just a test of thickness and how high fired a pot is? I also make these kinds of teapots-- and I alway
  22. Will be firing a bisque fire of porcelain ware Mugs without handles What is the best way to fire ( thinking of warpage ) Should the rims be facing up or down Wondering if it makes a difference Thank you Nicky
  23. Hello everyone, I am writing this post due to hope of meeting with someone who may help me to build a downdraft gas fired kiln. I have the book of Frederick Olsen's Kiln Book and in my opinion it has enough information to design a kiln but it may take a lot of time when I start doing that. I only start making ceramics and will be very appreciated ıf I can find someone to give me a hand.. That's why I just want to ask people on here and maybe somebody would like to share a kiln plan (preferentially 1m3) which had been tested before. Thank you in advance!
  24. Hi everyone, I have recently got an Uhlig U 500T kiln. I have never fired anything before and it gives me a really hard time to understand how to operate this one particularly, because there seems to be no resource or manual on the internet (the only thing that came with it is in German and kind of explaining how to use the controller tho). As far as I understood the slowest possible heating is to 500C in 5 hours. My pieces are quite thin and dry so I am hoping this is fine. Still, I am wondering is it really possible that this is the slowest option? My plan is for bisque
  25. Hi, After only ever doing low-firings, I attempted my first high firing yesterday but my kiln simply refused to go higher than 1165 celsius. It was very frustrating as I had spent quite a lot on stoneware clay and glazes. What are the reasons why my kiln wouldn't reach the temperature that I'd set? I noticed that the temperature rise slowed down significantly after it reached 1140 celsius and for the last half hour it didn't move from 1165. Now, I'm guessing, I'm left with bowls that aren't food safe. Any advice would be appreciated. Thank you.
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