Friday, October 24, 2008

Last day of making pots

Wow, that went way too fast! Today was the last day to start new pots. Tomorrow Christy's family is coming to town. Sunday and Monday we are hoping we can make saggers. I know it's pushing it a little bit to finish making saggers Monday and start loading Tuesday, but we're hoping to stack them up in the second and/or third chamber empty for this firing. We'll start the firing off very slowly as this is the first firing and there is sure to be a lot of mositure that need to be driven out.
So for the last day of throwing I made vases:
After a couple of boards of vases I decieded to make several larger jars:
Not sure if there is time to glaze these for the firing. I might just place them unglazed near the firebox of the first chamber. They'll be like miniture David Stuempfle pots!
Joe

5 comments:

EF said...

What body will you use for your saggars? I do hope not everything will be put in a saggar!?!LOL! I do like your throwing body. What is it's name?

Joe and Christy said...

The saggers are made out of the same clay body that the stoking plugs are made out of. We're planning on using the saggers for Christy's slab built platters and my plates. Stacking them up instead of a bag wall in the second and third chambers to direct the flame path (an idea we got from Mark Skudlarek). Right now we are calling our clay body 'windy ridge 4', as it's the fourth mix in the series we've tried. I think we're getting close though, it does seem to need more silica, otherwise we'll just have to see how it comes out of the firing. It's a mix of different kaolins, and yellow banks ball clay.
Joe

EF said...

Thanks for the response.
Do you have a rule of thumb as to how you formulate a body. I need to because the prepared stuff that I get here in Germany is outrageous. As if the exchange rate wasn't enough already! We live in the biggest kaolin region in Germany and would love to use them. I have seen there chemical analysis and I am not sure what to look out for or what to consider. You had mentioned your new body needs more silica; for throwing structure or for the firing?

Joe and Christy said...

Ef-
I don't really have a rule of thumb, nor do I really feel qualified to be giving out too much advice on clay body formulation. Don't be discouraged though, I believe there is a wide margin in which a clay will work. Certainly our clay would be fine the way that it is. Our high silica glaze still crazes which is an indication that our clay needs more silica for a better clay/glaze fit. Not a big deal, but something that I would like to improve. Certainly if you have access to a good local kaolin get a load of it and start experimenting. Just try it on it's own and find out if it's plastic enough (if not maybe ball clay or, bentonite), does the glaze fit (if not it probably needs either more silica or more feldspar), does it seem to vitrify (if it seems to absorb water after the firing, it probably needs more feldspar). Don't sweat the chemical analysis's unless your into chemistry (which I'm not really). You can't learn unless you try. There is a lot of science behind it all and if you read it all you (I certainly do) might feel completely in over your head. Just start experimenting and if/when you run into problems then go back to the books for the answers.
Joe

ang said...

excellent info you guys are such a source and i appreciate it...and i love experimenting, my market buddy and i hatched an idea for stretching the wood fired raku bin/kiln into a mini soda fired kiln this wkd just got to try this out these holidays....