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Using wild ocean clay (salt!)


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Hi!

I quite enjoy using wild clays: I use them as clay bodies or in glazes. I have found lots of black clay in the sea and I wonder if I can use it or if the salt content can damage the kiln? I could try and wash is, but I cannot think of any way to only wash out the salt and not all the clay, too.

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FromDigitalfire's page on efflorescence  https://digitalfire.com/glossary/efflorescence
Soluble salts can also be removed by slurrying a clay using excess water, allowing it to settle and pouring off the stained water (and repeating as necessary).

I'm dubious about the advice because of the potential loss of "fines". What do others think?

 

Edited by PeterH
finger trouble
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Alright thank you! Alas, I also think so. I read that the salt can react in a pretty undesirable way and even make the fume more toxic.

I was also a bit unsure what happens if I just water it out: would I just sit back with fine sand, basically? But I will try and I will fire it in my almost broke outdoor kiln and see:)

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1 hour ago, petrichor said:

Alright thank you! Alas, I also think so. I read that the salt can react in a pretty undesirable way and even make the fume more toxic.

I was also a bit unsure what happens if I just water it out: would I just sit back with fine sand, basically? But I will try and I will fire it in my almost broke outdoor kiln and see:)

 You can do a sedimentation test by shaking up your clay/soil with water and letting it settle, the different sizes of particle separate out into layers:
images?q=tbn:ANd9GcSiRE6dz_3dJXLiuJ5lIgB


This is a variation on the theme, separating the clay from any sand (and washing it the process).
Processing Clay the Easy Way: Water Extraction
http://www.practicalprimitive.com/skillofthemonth/processingclay.html

 

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