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Found 12 results

  1. I order from a clay company that shall remain nameless (cough cough.. columbus clay). Every few weeks or so we will find a rubber or plastic chunk in the clay we receive. A few times in the past few years we have even had potters "find" metal shavings in the clay while they are throwing. . Once or twice this has resulted in a minor cut. We took precautions to minimize the possibility that contaminates come from us. Moved all unrelated work out of the clay processing area, checked that the clay processing tools were not coming off in the clay, created clear signage for what does or doesn't belong in certain reclaim buckets. Some pieces have been found before we process in the pug mill(straight from the supplier), others after. It's hard to know whether it's us or the clay company. There's some urgency to this issue for me because it could have been much worse. As experienced potters, what is your experience with clay companies. Is this normal? Should I shop around for another supplier(despite a new clay body creating a potential nightmare)? What actions would you take to prevent this from happening again? What additional precautions might we take in our clay mixing area?
  2. I bought a used Paragon DTC 100C, but am not sure it works. Is there an easy and safe way to test it without buying a stand or other items I will not use if it does not work. We have 220 in my shop, cement floors, tons of space. I will upload photos when I am at my computer. They are too big to load from my phone. Thanks!
  3. Hi everyone, A question. Can anyone see a problem with not glazing over underglaze for non food works? I have looked but can't find an answer anywhere and it seems that everyone uses a glaze over the top for the underglazes. I'm using porcelain clay to make wearable works including rings (I should add). I love the results, and the undergalzes adhere very well to the porcelain. I can even wet sand after the final fire and the design stays put. The colours appear somewhat softer but that is good too. I belive that the newer underglazes have more frit in them making them a litle more like a glaze themselves and this is why they work differntly to older style glazes.? Any issues? I can do it but is it a bad idea as far as safely goes? cheers Lilly aka etched
  4. It is easy to procrastinate, for me anyway. About six months ago, a small glob of crystalline glaze missed the catcher and landed on the kiln floor. I always fire cone six, so it never became a problem. A week ago I decided to test a cone 11 porcelain body and fired up to 2345F. That little 1/2" glob melted through the bottom of the kiln, creating an exhaust port for 2345F heat to come out. (Think rocket booster at NASA.) So here is the photographic evidence and a cautionary tale about kiln safety and upkeep. Nerd
  5. Hi all, I'm in Montreal and am wondering if people have had success with air purifiers in the studio. We have an air vent connected to the window which we use for sanding and glaze mixing (and for the kiln of course), but I'm talking about general dust buildup and air quality. Our studio has about 20 members (kind of works like a gym but for ceramics) so it gets dusty really easily. Do plug-in air filters/purifiers work to help take harmful dust particles out of the air? If so, which models do you all recommend? Low wattage is best as our electrical wiring is pretty sketchy and the fuse tends to break fairly often. Thanks!
  6. When we moved, I lost access to a community studio. I just purchased a kiln of my own but I don't have the luxury of a room to myself for a studio. My question is in regards to safety. I've been reading the safety forums and now I'm so scared to do anything and am disheartened as I probably will never have a room solely for pottery. I want to know if I can use hardiboard and work with my wet clay at my kitchen table and then dry my pieces in my laundry room that I can mop? Of course when I leave my table, I would use a damp rag and mop there as well but will this pose a health risk to me and my family? I miss having a studio I could go to and now I'm afraid I'll never work with clay again? Any help is appreciated!
  7. I will soon be the new 3D studio technician at a university in charge of shop safety. The 3D studio is one LARGE work area that is a combination ceramics, wood, and metal working area. They do everything from turning ceramic bowls on a wheel to building wooden structures to mig welding. I am seriously questioning the safety of this setup. They mix the clay in the same area that welding and sandblasting is going on. There is lots of ceramic dust that can migrate into the wood area and vice versa (there's really no barrier between the two). Students use grinding wheels that are used by metal workers to sand the sharp edges from their ceramics, sending debris into the air. This all seems like a safety nightmare. Wood shavings, metal filings, ceramic dust, chips from glazes all in the same area. What can I do to address these glaring safety issues? Apparently there is a handful of adjunct faculty teaching ceramics that the sculpture professor has been butting heads with about these safety issues, but the adjuncts keep writing to the higher ups making a stink and ensuring that the same unsafe practices keep on occurring. Now this is all on me. How can I make the area safer (can you all point to books or websites addressing safety) and get the people at the top to take these safety concerns seriously? Anyone else with any sort of similar experiences?
  8. Hello guys, My name is Talha and I am new to this forum. I like arts and crafts of all sort and am taking little bit of knowledge + practice from high school art 1 and 2 class to work on random projects. Recently I have been wanting to make a waterfall for my cat. My cat likes to drink water out of my mom's vase (made of clay) which has a money plant in it. He has a plastic waterer, but he does not use it at all. So I thought id make him a waterer with a plant in it. What clay should I use? I saw one clay at michaels and it was an air drying one. Should I go with the classic clay that needs firing? If so, how do I fire it at home? Also, It will need a glossy finish inside and out, so it can hold water (right?). Is the final piece going to be safe for the cat? are there any paints that I should use that are safer for pets or after firing it does not matter? Any input will be appreciated!! Thank you all
  9. Evelyne could not post the Qotw. . . so I am helping her out. After all of our discussions on so many of the forums, many have talked about safety in the studio. These discussions will include keeping a clean studio, washing up instead of sweeping or brushing, using respirators when working with dust, using goggles to view the cone packs in the kiln, how to lift and move materials safely, and so many other things. So what in the anonymity of the forum. . . what don't you do for your self safety wise that you should do? Reason I am bringing it up right now is that I have been trying to get some orders finished up, along with some wedding presents and a wedding jar. However, I am kicking around in a studio that has not been cleaned after the Winter with dust everywhere, trimming craps still on the floor, and overall chaos as I have to step over things to get to the wheel. Pretty bad right now, but hope to get the time to clean as these pieces start to dry. best, Pres
  10. Hi So I just got John Britts mid fire glaze book. Boy is it beautiful! So of course I am not empowered yet, some intimidated , which I should be. My question to you is: how do you deal with the toxic chemicals ? I did a search and I got a hit on magnesium oxide , I believe, and the consensus was that no one bothered with it. If you do bother with it , what precautions do you take. I am assuming on the very toxic, full ventilator, gloves,safety glasses, clothing washed separately. But the fumes! Does everyone have an out door kiln , everyone vented? My kiln is tiny, should I be saving up to vent?My kiln is in a shed , with double doors that open up . I figure I can open up the doors , blow a fan towards the kiln. Mr Britt talks of fumes being in several loads afterwards. He also talks of not not actually knowing how toxic combining , or firing or combining and firing can be because of no tests having been done. Then there is the dust that should be mopped not swept. Should nothing else be in my shed? What do you keep the toxic stuff in ? And where do you get it? Is there a book that is better on this stuff? A Google gave me a gaggle of books! Or is one just as good as another? I am paranoid, I am very leery of chemicals. I just have to know what to do. I probsbly won't dive into a bunch of toxic stuff unless I see a real need, but the dry chemicals are all a hazard by virtue of being dry and inhalable ,eye irritant etc. It would reassure me to know what you do. Jolie
  11. I got lucky with this one and I wanted to post this as a reminder to folks to always check and make sure the kiln is FULLY in order before firing. My blog is about success AND failure so you get to learn from my mistakes. If I can help prevent one accident it is well worth the embarrassment. http://dreamsofearth.wordpress.com/2014/11/11/dont-let-this-happen-to-you/
  12. Setting up an Evenheat programmable 25x23" electric kiln in a basement room that is 15x20'. Questions: 1. Is it safe to vent to the garage, avoiding drilling through the foundation, and propping open a door to the outside? 2. Are fire retardant boards on the walls in the corner good enough or do we have to put plasterboard on the reat of the walls? 3. Will a fire alarm go off is we fire to Cone 6 and, if so, how far from the kiln should it go? Thanks
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