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Help please. What stoneware clay can my kiln manage to fire?


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Please help me. I can’t figure out what stoneware clay my kiln could handle. I recently purchased the Jen Ken AF3C 11/9 Ceramic Kiln. It’s Max temp (as stated) is 2100* or about cone 3.    The problem is I need a functional ceramic that’s not too porous so avoiding earthenware.  Does anyone know what type of clay I can fire at the temp? Or am I coming at this problem the wrong way?

Thank you so much for your help!

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I started in ceramics using Longhorn White clay from Armadillo Clay, Austin, TX. Firing to cone 3 in oxidation.  The ware is mature, does not leak. My cat’s water bowl, made with Longhorn Red,  has survived 15 years  outside.   The Longhorn Red clay fires to cone 3 also.  The clay is sold as low fire clay for earthen ware; our prof used it for cone 3 as a mid-range clay.   I now use it as a decorative slip at cone 10, and it does not run off the stoneware or porcelain at cone 10-11 in reduction.

https://www.armadilloclay.com/store/p7/Longhorn_White.html#/

I suspect there are other low fire clay bodies that will survive cone 3.  

Test a clay body to find it’s maximum firing temperature before assuming the clay cannot meet your requirements.  
LT

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1 hour ago, Magnolia Mud Research said:

I started in ceramics using Longhorn White clay from Armadillo Clay, Austin, TX. Firing to cone 3 in oxidation.  The ware is mature, does not leak. My cat’s water bowl, made with Longhorn Red,  has survived 15 years  outside.   The Longhorn Red clay fires to cone 3 also.  The clay is sold as low fire clay for earthen ware; our prof used it for cone 3 as a mid-range clay.   I now use it as a decorative slip at cone 10, and it does not run off the stoneware or porcelain at cone 10-11 in reduction.

https://www.armadilloclay.com/store/p7/Longhorn_White.html#/

I suspect there are other low fire clay bodies that will survive cone 3.  

Test a clay body to find it’s maximum firing temperature before assuming the clay cannot meet your requirements.  
LT

Thanks!

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"Plastic fritware bodies are most easily made by simply replacing the feldspar with a high sodium frit. Near zero porosity can be achieved around cone 04-03 ... if more frit that can be tolerated even lower maturing temperatures are possible (to an extreme where more more than 90% is frit and the body is vitreous at cone 020."

fritware

 

Edited by C.Banks
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I'd look into a terra cotta body. Most can fire to cone 2 or 3 with pretty good absorption rates. It's not an ideal situation, though, unless you plan to mix your own glazes. As far as I know, nobody makes commercial glazes for cone 3. And like Mark said, firing your kiln to it's max temp means your element life will not be great. As soon as the elements wear just a little bit, they'll need to be replaced or it won't reach temp. If you've got a kiln that can fire 2-4 cones above the temp you work at, they can wear a lot more before they need replacing, so you get a lot more firings out of them. Your kiln is really made for low fire work. It looks like there's a version of that kiln that pulls 17 amps instead of 15 amps, which gets it to cone 8. I'd call JenKen and see if it's as simple as just changing out the elements to get the higher temp. Chances are it is that simple.

Whether it's the 15 amp model you have or the 17 amp version, the kiln should be plugged into a 20 amp receptacle, not a standard 15 am household circuit..

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