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Raw low fire slip ware type glaze

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I was a potter 40 years ago and changed course. Now in retirement I want to get back into it purely for fun. I did raw glazed earthenware using lead bisilicate  glazes. Are there comparable classic lead-like slip ware glaze materials and/or formulas out there today that I could use?  Thanks so much!

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Hi Art!

There may not be a direct replacement for lead; "Lead is one of the great fluxes...... except for this one little itty bitty issue"

There are a few discussions archived in this forum; here's one:


Found lots of reading on lithium in clayart archives; here' one on lead bisilicate:


Are you starting out "fresh" in terms of materials and tools/equipment? If so, you may consider the world o' mid fire, lots of choices, literature, action...

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Thanks for your reply and the links. Will check them out. I am starting totally from scratch except for a kick wheel that I have been dragging around with me all these years.  I plan on getting a cone 10 electric kiln so I am pretty wide open to new directions. My first and deep love is Eurpoean earthenware but I also loved throwing porcelain, although never in production.  I always formulated my own glazes, but open to options that are less risky and messy as well. 

thanks again!

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Please post back your progress, decisions, etc.

Three years ago, ticked (start to) learn to throw box at local JC Ceramic lab - Wheel I class, now have an ancient seven cubic foot electric cone ten kiln, a very modern electric wheel, some shelf and counter space, basic tools, glaze materials, and clay. Having tried several clays, have at least two "sure" keepers, and seven or eight glazes I really like - all mid fire stoneware.

If you've yet to find Tony Hansen's online treasure trove o' data, https://digitalfire.com/

Retirement ain' all bad, eh?

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That’s great and inspiring as well!  I have only gotten as far as leaning toward  a 7 cubic foot L&L kiln and researching sturdy work/wedging table and some shelves. Will be putting in a 14’x12’ shed that will also be used for gardening.  Just need to nail down clays and glazes, did out some of my ancient pottery tools and jump in.  Will surely report progress.   

thanks again. 

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art, welcome to the forum.

it would help if you put your location in your avatar.   most people do not seem to read the info there but it helps.  sometimes advice is given and the result not helpful because the question came from someone in another country or the original question was asked years ago.

if you look at my profile and find "albums", you might see how i set up a studio in a 10x16 shed.   no space for gardening but there might be some ideas for you.    there have been many changes in ways to work since you were active.   a kick wheel really takes up a lot of space and you are now 40 years older.  maybe kicking is no longer comfortable or it might be marvelous for your hobby.  you are just on the cusp of a delightful opportunity.

have fun, that is paramount.

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Thanks so much for your reply, your encouragement and for sharing your photos of your studio.   Good point on the wheel but part of what I live about throwing pots is the kick wheel feeling. Also, I have a fairly compact one. 

I will add to my profile that I am live in the Capital Region of upstate New York.  Good suggestion.   


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On 11/11/2020 at 6:34 PM, Art said:

that will also be used for gardening

Good luck there.  I have a 10' x 8' greenhouse.  12 years ago it was all plants.  Then I bought  a second-hand kiln, and moved the plants over a bit.  I referred to it as half and half for a long time.  Now I also use the space for yarn/wool preparation and dyeing .  The plant "half" is now a dozen strawberry plants and some large bonsai trees for winter shelter, plus compost and a few tools.

Stuff takes over !


Edited by Chilly
typo changed compact to compost !
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