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Clay Poll--people's favorite cone 6 and 10 bodies

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I would be interested to know, if people are willing to share, what their favorite cone 6 and 10 clay bodies are and why they favor them. The number of clay bodies available are simply mind boggling for me to sort through. Any recommendations would be most appreciated!

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Favorite cone 6 stonewares are the Vashon series from SPS, specifically the white and reds.   They throw really well, vitrify at cone 6 with low absorption, not groggy so easy on the hands and can go bigger without becoming unmanageable.

So far my favorite cone 6 porcelain is Crystal white from SPS.  It's not translucent per se, but it is very white and it handles a lot better than the other porcelains I've tried.  It's still very much a porcelain to throw, but I can throw taller forms without having to worry about it collapsing or sucking too much clay down to the bottom.

I've tried bmix and about 10 other clays and bmix is hard to beat other than the price.  Some people say it handles like cream cheese but I don't think so, porcelain is much more cream cheesy.

 

I'm on the west coast in the Seattle area so I don't know much about Amaco or standard clays.

Edited by liambesaw

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Liam,

Thanks for the input. Who is SPS? That's one I have not heard  of. I am in Coeur d'Alene, ID. So close to the same providers as you.  Interestingly enough, I got some Amaco #38 through  the school supply site, not realizing that it was expensive compared to other clays. Ironically, so far, it has performed the best as far as throwing and trimming are concerned. Haven't fired it yet. I really loved Clay Art Center's New Zealand porcelain until I went to trim it----it shows every little mark....and if you try to throw something like a knob, etc on a lid, it literally starts melting and everything sticks to it.....so that's out of the running which is sad because it is a real pleasure to throw.  The "stoneware with grog" I initially bought is horrific for anything except handles...so it's out. I am testing a cone 6 porcelain from CAC and a cone 10 porcelain called White Rose---so far sort of average and supposedly toothy...so a possibility.  Finding a decent stoneware has been the challenge ironically. 

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47 minutes ago, MFP said:

Liam,

Thanks for the input. Who is SPS? That's one I have not heard  of. I am in Coeur d'Alene, ID. So close to the same providers as you.  Interestingly enough, I got some Amaco #38 through  the school supply site, not realizing that it was expensive compared to other clays. Ironically, so far, it has performed the best as far as throwing and trimming are concerned. Haven't fired it yet. I really loved Clay Art Center's New Zealand porcelain until I went to trim it----it shows every little mark....and if you try to throw something like a knob, etc on a lid, it literally starts melting and everything sticks to it.....so that's out of the running which is sad because it is a real pleasure to throw.  The "stoneware with grog" I initially bought is horrific for anything except handles...so it's out. I am testing a cone 6 porcelain from CAC and a cone 10 porcelain called White Rose---so far sort of average and supposedly toothy...so a possibility.  Finding a decent stoneware has been the challenge ironically. 

Seattle Pottery Supply, they're in South downtown Seattle.  You either love them or hate them, most people hate them from what I've heard.  I don't find them to be very off-putting but I am sociable.  If you go in knowing what you want ahead of time it makes it much smoother.  I call my orders in ahead of time now to avoid a long wait at the warehouse.

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I think most stoneware bodies throw basically the same unless the mix is short by error somehow particle/grog can make them feel different but if the clay is well aged that’s the key difference I notice old seasoned clay is extremely plastic and throws great. I’ll buy a ton of clay and wrap the whole batch up for a couple years  different kinds from different makers and after Time growing all the good stuff it’s so plastic you ‘d be amazed what it will do, even old bags gone bone dry rehydrated in a 5 gallon bucket come back as beautiful stuff it’s well worth the effort. 

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3 hours ago, liambesaw said:

Seattle Pottery Supply, they're in South downtown Seattle.  You either love them or hate them, most people hate them from what I've heard.  I don't find them to be very off-putting but I am sociable.  If you go in knowing what you want ahead of time it makes it much smoother.  I call my orders in ahead of time now to avoid a long wait at the warehouse.

I think the Spokane Pottery Guild gets their clay from them. I will check their website. Thanks Liam....they can't be any more disorganized or off putting than Clay Art Center.  Maybe they should have a contest. 

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Thanks Neil. Well....that is a good question...in the sense that I requested what I thought I wanted and wound up with one of the most horrific clays on the planet.  I want a clay that throws well, trims well, and accepts glazes well....I am beginning to think I am asking too much.  I currently have tried  2 stoneware bodies and three porcelain bodies.  I find it very interesting that the porcelain bodies are easier to decide whether I want them or not. As I stated to Liam, I was loving the New Zealand bodies ( 6 and 10) until I went to trim them...and throw a handle/knob on a lid. So, they're out. I supposedly have an Oregon White cone 6 porcelain  from Clay Art Center that so far has not given me cause for complaint....but since they have the wrong description on it on the website...I don't know its properties., I am trying a  cone 10 White Rose porcelain from Clay Art Center which is supposedly popular.  I don't know if the Oregon White is glassy or toothy.  The White Rose is toothy. The raku/stoneware with grog is awful in just about any way you can imagine. Ironically, the Amaco #38  stoneware throws well, trims well....now will see how it fires. 

What I am looking for is a nice dependable cone 6 stoneware and porcelain and same for cone 10.  What is available to me is Laguna, Aardvark, Clay Art Center, Imco, and Seattle Pottery supply.  White stoneware.

Edited by MFP

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Well, I am in Coeur d'Alene....so you aren't that far from me. Wonder what the border control would say about a load of clay LOL? I would probably jhave to take a cutoff wire so they could cut through the chunks!   I am looking for a white stoneware body....sorry....I wasn't specific enough. Thank you for responding! 

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That has not been my experience.....these new clays are nothing like the ones we were using when I was a production potter.   They are far more plastic and much more forgiving than the clay in those days. The different ones I have tried now are as different as night and day.  Yes of course if you age a clay it gets better, but since I am pushing 70, I don't have time to wait around for that.  Thanks for your response!

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Border control will have surprisingly little to say about it. My friend Ciro works for Plainsman, and he's been taking $2000 loads of clay into Vermont duty free. That's probably a bit more than you need at a go. 

If Plainsman IS an option, m370 is a warm white/cream burning midfire body that is plastic, trims nicely and is often used by those who want a clean background for decorating. H570 is its cone 10 counterpart, and I personally really enjoyed using it. I have heard rumours that the Archie Bray gets some in, but I'd give Plainsman in Medicine Hat a call to confirm that. They may have other places you can get it south of the border.

Plainsman clays in general prefer to go wide rather than tall, and both 570 bodies prefer slipping and scoring for attachments, as opposed to just water. As a plus, the recipes on Digitalfire are all formulated on Plainsman, because Tony Hanson is their chemist.

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I've been using Laguna B-Mix ^5 for a few years now and have been very happy with it. It is a smooth white clay that throws well, fires to a white white, trims easily and takes glaze well. I've been glazing with Amaco potters Choice glazes with some pretty spectacular results...

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Thank you very much!  Sounds like what I am looking for in mid range!  I have been looking at the Amaco Celadons...they look pretty hard to beat and can be blended for different hues. I will look at the B-Mix ! I am a little confused....how are you using cone 6 glazes if this is a cone 5 body?

Edited by MFP

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Really?  Well, I guess I shouldn't be surprised...9 and 10 are also somewhat except for fussy glazes. It was the clay body melting I was worried about.  Clay Art Center has the B mix.....with and without grog.  It was actually kind of funny,,,,,there's so much grog in this "raku" stoneware that when I went to go get finger printed for TSA pre-check...they had trouble getting my prints because they had been worn off!  Thanks, Neil.....you are always such a great help. 

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I always figured it was from dry skin, I use gypsum, plaster and silica at work and my hands are always too dry.  Coming home and banging out pots doesn't help I'm sure. 

Good news is, go ahead and start your life of crime, you're absolutely untraceable :lol:

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Unfortunately,  the FBI likes me too much for that. I had a Federal Prison after me for months to work there because the FBI gave me the highest security clearance of anyone who had ever applied.....then working for my agency, we were all finger printed and they were sent to the FBI database.  My TSA  precheck approval  was supposed to take a month.....I got my approval in three days.  Also...way too many criminal attorneys and judges know who I am.  The perils of forensic psychology. Glad not to be doing it any more.  So crime is not an option....I used to spend so much time at the jail, I told them the least they could do was give me a cell where I could take a nap! 

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9 minutes ago, MFP said:

Unfortunately,  the FBI likes me too much for that. I had a Federal Prison after me for months to work there because the FBI gave me the highest security clearance of anyone who had ever applied.....then working for my agency, we were all finger printed and they were sent to the FBI database.  My TSA  precheck approval  was supposed to take a month.....I got my approval in three days.  Also...way too many criminal attorneys and judges know who I am.  The perils of forensic psychology. Glad not to be doing it any more.  So crime is not an option....I used to spend so much time at the jail, I told them the least they could do was give me a cell where I could take a nap! 

It's the perfect cover :p

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I know very little of cone 6 bodies

Cone 10-for me is all laguna clay  odies

Daves porcelain

Babu porcealain

50/50 porcelain

for stone ware its salt kiln stuff for me as I do not do reduction stoneware.

just about any iron bearing clay  is great-even woodfire B-mix works in salt

considere yourself covered in mud as adeep uncover op.

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Thank you Mark for your input.  It's a bug help!  ( If I never see another criminal, it will be too soon. It took me two years after I retired to stop thinking everyone was lying to me.  I completely understand where the jail staff were coming from.....I don't know how they did it all day....besides in addition having  med cell area that was essentially a psych unit without staff---and I knew everyone of them. )

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I went through this clay hunt a few months ago myself.  I am not fond of B-Mix,  it is like throwing cream cheese.  I like a clay that has a little more body,   I tried several different clay bodies and finally decided on Laguna's  WC 52 Plain.   I use to throw a Laguna clay that had enough body to it you could even do light hand building  with it but they stopped making it.  I think it is a cheaper clay but the freight adds so much to the price by the time it is shipped to  Kansas.  Good luck with your hunt.    Denice

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