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Metal Rods To Withstand Cone 6 Firing

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Can anyone suggest a source for metal dowels or rods that will withstand cone 6 firing? I've never tried applying clay to metal rods that were intended to stay in the sculpture -- I assume that I'd need to wrap the rod in something that would "give" as the clay began to shrink. When fired, will the metal cause cracking in the clay around it? Thanks, Jayne

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Hi Jayne

 

Are the rods going to show after firing or they armature? What diameter are these rods? Are they going to be straight, bent, coiled,.....? anything special? More info please.

 

Tom

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Hi Jayne

 

Are the rods going to show after firing or they armature? What diameter are these rods? Are they going to be straight, bent, coiled,.....? anything special? More info please.

 

Tom

 

 

 

I was thinking in general terms, but yes, they are to be armatures or hidden connecting rods, probably 1/8" to 1/2". They'll be straight, since I have no way of bending them. But while we're on the subject, smaller diameter wires that could withstand cone 6 might be useful, although I can't at the moment think how I'd use them!

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I used nichrome wire to attach ceramic fibre lining to my raku kiln. As I only fire raku to cone 06, no clue if it would work at cone 6. There have been times when some kind of armature is needed in my sculpture, too, that's when I started using paper clay. It makes decent armatures and you can shape it to your needs.

 

Using any metal rod of 1/2" and leaving it in the piece is pretty scarey to me. You are talking about something the size of rebar used in concrete forming. Is there anyway you can buttress the work with clay inserts to get the heighth or extension you want?

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Pp

Can anyone suggest a source for metal dowels or rods that will withstand cone 6 firing? I've never tried applying clay to metal rods that were intended to stay in the sculpture -- I assume that I'd need to wrap the rod in something that would "give" as the clay began to shrink. When fired, will the metal cause cracking in the clay around it? Thanks, Jayne

 

 

I have made beaded mugs using nichrome wire bent into little u-shaped pieces which are stuck into the clay when it was leather hard. Then they are fired to cone 6 and they work fine. A friend uses nichrome at cone 10.

 

Sylvia

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Pp

Can anyone suggest a source for metal dowels or rods that will withstand cone 6 firing? I've never tried applying clay to metal rods that were intended to stay in the sculpture -- I assume that I'd need to wrap the rod in something that would "give" as the clay began to shrink. When fired, will the metal cause cracking in the clay around it? Thanks, Jayne

 

 

I have made beaded mugs using nichrome wire bent into little u-shaped pieces which are stuck into the clay when it was leather hard. Then they are fired to cone 6 and they work fine. A friend uses nichrome at cone 10.

 

Sylvia

 

 

Thanks, Sylvia. Where do you find nichrome wire? And hello again, Idaho. I know that some folks use paperclay as an armature, but a paperclay "rod" that's 1/4" to 1/2" in diameter is not strong enough in my experience.

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I would think that stainless steel would work fine, especially the lower carbon "alloys." I have put steel nails in my kiln to ^6, and they come out a little crusty and black, but still have integrity.Some nails have a coating which burns up causing the crustiness.

 

You could try :

 

http://www.onlinemetals.com/index.cfm

 

or

http://www.smallpart...6414131&x=0&y=0

 

Put some in your next kiln load and see how it works!

 

If you put them into the clay and then fire it, there is always some cracking, unfortunately. I wish there weren't, I have many ideas that would work if the cracking wasn't a problem. I guess the other alternative is to just make holes for the rods and add them after the firing, and use epoxy to hold 'em in place if possible. I don't know if that would work for you.

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I would think that stainless steel would work fine, especially the lower carbon "alloys." I have put steel nails in my kiln to ^6, and they come out a little crusty and black, but still have integrity.Some nails have a coating which burns up causing the crustiness.

 

You could try :

 

http://www.onlinemetals.com/index.cfm

 

or

http://www.smallpart...6414131&x=0&y=0

 

Put some in your next kiln load and see how it works!

 

If you put them into the clay and then fire it, there is always some cracking, unfortunately. I wish there weren't, I have many ideas that would work if the cracking wasn't a problem. I guess the other alternative is to just make holes for the rods and add them after the firing, and use epoxy to hold 'em in place if possible. I don't know if that would work for you.

 

 

Thanks Madison for the sources and ideas ("put them in the kilnand see how they do" BEFORE putting them in a labor intensive sculpture -- uh, why didn't I think of that!!). Those two websites are treasure troves -- I may as well plan to take tomorrow off so I can look at EVERYTHING they offer! Jayne

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Pp

Can anyone suggest a source for metal dowels or rods that will withstand cone 6 firing? I've never tried applying clay to metal rods that were intended to stay in the sculpture -- I assume that I'd need to wrap the rod in something that would "give" as the clay began to shrink. When fired, will the metal cause cracking in the clay around it? Thanks, Jayne

 

 

I have made beaded mugs using nichrome wire bent into little u-shaped pieces which are stuck into the clay when it was leather hard. Then they are fired to cone 6 and they work fine. A friend uses nichrome at cone 10.

 

Sylvia

 

 

Thanks, Sylvia. Where do you find nichrome wire? And hello again, Idaho. I know that some folks use paperclay as an armature, but a paperclay "rod" that's 1/4" to 1/2" in diameter is not strong enough in my experience.

 

 

I got mine at Bracker's but any good supplier should have it.

 

Sylvia

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I have some pretty thick rods I got for making tall stilts like for lids and such. I however do not remember where I got them but it might aid in googling by looking for stilt pins or rods.

 

The biggest I have is about 6" long and pretty thick. Would be very hard to bend though as that would not be a good trait for stilt.

 

However I have only used on low fire (03 was hotest)

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Pp

Can anyone suggest a source for metal dowels or rods that will withstand cone 6 firing? I've never tried applying clay to metal rods that were intended to stay in the sculpture -- I assume that I'd need to wrap the rod in something that would "give" as the clay began to shrink. When fired, will the metal cause cracking in the clay around it? Thanks, Jayne

 

 

I have made beaded mugs using nichrome wire bent into little u-shaped pieces which are stuck into the clay when it was leather hard. Then they are fired to cone 6 and they work fine. A friend uses nichrome at cone 10.

 

Sylvia

 

 

Thanks, Sylvia. Where do you find nichrome wire? And hello again, Idaho. I know that some folks use paperclay as an armature, but a paperclay "rod" that's 1/4" to 1/2" in diameter is not strong enough in my experience.

 

 

Thanks for all the help...

 

 

I got mine at Bracker's but any good supplier should have it.

 

Sylvia

 

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Can anyone suggest a source for metal dowels or rods that will withstand cone 6 firing? I've never tried applying clay to metal rods that were intended to stay in the sculpture -- I assume that I'd need to wrap the rod in something that would "give" as the clay began to shrink. When fired, will the metal cause cracking in the clay around it? Thanks, Jayne

 

 

You might try making your support rods out of clay, fire them, then use them as the armature. They will be brittle, but strong, and you can shape them any way you want. Of course, shrinkage will still have to be dealt with. . .

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Can anyone suggest a source for metal dowels or rods that will withstand cone 6 firing? I've never tried applying clay to metal rods that were intended to stay in the sculpture -- I assume that I'd need to wrap the rod in something that would "give" as the clay began to shrink. When fired, will the metal cause cracking in the clay around it? Thanks, Jayne

 

 

You might try making your support rods out of clay, fire them, then use them as the armature. They will be brittle, but strong, and you can shape them any way you want. Of course, shrinkage will still have to be dealt with. . .

 

 

 

Interesting idea. Thanks to everyone who contributed sources and ideas.... Jayne

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Can anyone suggest a source for metal dowels or rods that will withstand cone 6 firing? I've never tried applying clay to metal rods that were intended to stay in the sculpture -- I assume that I'd need to wrap the rod in something that would "give" as the clay began to shrink. When fired, will the metal cause cracking in the clay around it? Thanks, Jayne

 

 

You might try making your support rods out of clay, fire them, then use them as the armature. They will be brittle, but strong, and you can shape them any way you want. Of course, shrinkage will still have to be dealt with. . .

 

 

 

Interesting idea. Thanks to everyone who contributed sources and ideas.... Jayne

 

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If you use stainless steel rods - which you can find at hardware stores and websites - and wrap them with newspaper while building, the newspaper burns out and allows for clay shrinkage. If you really want to do the math, I'm sure there's a way to determine the thickness of the paper. But I just roll some around them, add tape and build. You can also find baling wire, which is stainless steel. I got a roll of s.s. wire from Ace Hardware which is just under 1/8 inch in diameter.

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Interesting concept..... I feel This.... from (Ceramics Arts Daily) may be of use.

March 23,2009

Linda Mau : Paper,Clay,and Steel: Combining Three Disparate Materials to Create Strong Yet Lightweight Ceramic Sculpture

Looks like fun to me...

Jeff

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Guest Herb Norris

That Linda Mau article from Ceramic arts daily describes a process that has been put to good use by Anthony Foo :

http://antjhfoo.blogspot.com/

 

As far as wrapping paper around the rods, that seems like a good idea, you would just have to know :

1. The total shrinkage of your clay from wet to glaze fired.

2. The thickness of your paper.

 

If I know that my clay shrinks 15% from wet to glaze firing, I would have to wrap enough paper around any rods to INCREASE their diameter by 15%, so that when the clay shrinks, it will fit JUST around the rod. This is certainly not a precise process, it would take some futzing.

If I am using 1/8" (0.125") rods, I would need to increase the diameter 15%, or 0.01875" of an inch (0.125 x 0.15 = 0.01875). 0.125" + 0.01875" = 0.14375. If my paper is about .005" thick , it will take 3-4 layers of paper to increase the diameter sufficiently.

My only concern is that if the clay has shrunk and is gripping the paper tightly, the paper is going to burn out long before the clay has a chance to shrink to the rod, and "grab hold' of it. Any clay supported by the paper might fall off/fall, but this could only be determined by experimenting.

What the heck, it seems like a good idea to try!

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