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Glaze Too Thick...and Too Thin

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I've mixed glazes too thick before, and I've mixed them too thin. But this time I seem to have done both, with the same glaze.

That is, I mixed up a new batch of a recipe that I've used with good results before, got distracted by other projects for a couple of weeks, and came back to find it had thickened considerably, way too thick for dipping. So I added a bit of water until the consistency seemed fine, stirred well, then had a good session with the glaze.

Coming back just two days later to finish the batch of pots, I found a lot of water on the top. Stirring it back in produced a glaze way too thin, about like skimmed milk. I waited a day, let the water collect on top again, scooped it off, then mixed again, and found the glaze is STILL too thin, way too thin. I have mixed it quite thoroughly and felt around in there, but nothing has settled out... Seems that no matter how much water I remove, it's too thin

This has to be a newbie mistake. What should I do?

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First off, always avoid mixing a glaze too thin. Always mix thicker. We (as potters) tend to use a lot of soluble salts in glazes, and "scooping water off the top" may alter the glaze in unintended ways. Also, be sure to mix constantly when doing a long glazing session. Some materials will settle out quickly, and the composition of materials left in the bucket will change a bit. That's all I have to say without knowing the glaze you're using...

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DOn't like to  throw out the liquid at the top of the glaze bucket.... Maybe but usually isn't just water..IMHO

Sounds like one of those .. should I defloc or floc situations. 

In that scenario, going back to find glaze has thickened, poss. I'd try Magnesium Sulphate.. unles it has been left to evaporate.

Early morning here, day light saving just ended so maybe I am in reversus totalis but think its ok. the above that is.

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If you like the glaze and it's working well why not make another batch that is thick and mix it in your thin mix, or just use the new batch and wait for the other one to evaporate and thicken.  Denice

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What probably happened was that the glaze thickened over the first few days as the particles absorbed the water. In the days following that, the soluble salts in the glaze started to come out, which deflocculated the glaze and made it too thin. Add some Epsom salts to thicken it up. Dissolve in hot water first.

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Thanks for the caution about not scooping.

I do make a habit of mixing on the thick side, as advised.

However, my real question was why a thick glaze to which I then added just enough water to produce the desired consistency would go watery after sitting for a couple of days. These was no settling at all--I mixed it thoroughly with an immersion blender, then double checked with a bare hand.

It would make sense to me that a settled glaze would seem thin on top, but I don't quite get how a thoroughly mixed glaze would be fine one day, too thin the next.

Very little experience with flocculants or deflocculants. One or the other called for here?

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