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Messages - rbogle

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Events and Workshops / Mid-Atlantic Clay Conference - Oct 2019
« on: April 04, 2019, 08:55:14 AM »
Here's the link to the upcoming Mid-Atlantic Clay Conference in Front Royal, VA in Oct:

Nice relaxing time to learn and just hang out with a bunch of clay folks.

Pottery Pictures / Mel's Black Shino Teapots
« on: November 22, 2017, 10:14:03 AM »
A couple pics of Mel's Black Shino Pots

Pottery Pictures / Naked Raku Pictures
« on: November 22, 2017, 10:09:22 AM »
Here's pics of some recent Naked Raku pieces

Pottery Pictures / Re: Pottery in Ogami, Japan
« on: November 13, 2016, 05:38:50 PM »
Thanks for the pics Hank....looking forward to seeing more.   Is that a bit of pink I see in that chawan?

Pottery Pictures / Re: Hello from Earth Based Ceramics!
« on: November 13, 2016, 05:36:55 PM »
Hi Rex,

Welcome!  This forum site is basically an extension of the Clayart list server.  It's fairly lightly used but is a great place to post pics which can be referenced from the Clayart list traffic that may get more attention than this site.

Feel free to contact me if you have any questions


Pottery Pictures / Re: Pottery in Ogami, Japan
« on: November 12, 2016, 10:43:15 PM »
Great...Looking forward to hearing about the trip.  I dream of taking a similar adventure :)

Pottery Pictures / Re: Pottery in Ogami, Japan
« on: November 06, 2016, 02:43:25 PM »
Thanks for posting Hank!!

General Discussion / Injection mold pictures
« on: October 08, 2016, 03:18:33 PM »
Pics from on Clayart

injection mold that made the template (The Tech department made it--very cool.)

Dear Clayart:

These two images are related to the video "Big Pots"
that I posted on Clayart a week or so ago. Link to video:

The silvery metal one is a photo of the injection mold
making machine that creates the plastic trapezoidal
dies for cutting the clay pieces to make "Big Pots".

The white plastic trapezoid photo is a close up view of the

I just wanted to show you what went into making the
template--lots of work (and experience) by the EMU
Technology department.  Thanks!


Glazes / Glazing / Re: Triaxial/Quadraxial blend test results
« on: August 19, 2016, 01:08:42 PM »
Looks good....That's LOTS of pots!

Tools and Equipment / Cutoff Wire Picture
« on: July 10, 2016, 12:38:30 PM »
Posting this on behalf of Mel Jacobson.....

Glazes / Glazing / Re: Triaxial/Quadraxial blend test results
« on: May 19, 2016, 01:19:43 PM »
Nicely done!!  I suspect the clayart folks will enjoy these pics and info.


Glazes / Glazing / Re: Glaze Tests!
« on: April 27, 2016, 11:43:22 AM »
Thanks for posting Owen and I'm looking forward to seeing the results of the tests and maybe some recipes.

You may want to post a note of the clayart listserv to guide folks to this post as I'm not sure many folks receive automatic updates from this forum.  Here's the link to your post:

Pottery Pictures / Re: 1st experience with saggar. Advice requested
« on: March 27, 2016, 12:34:22 PM »
Hi Cyndy,

These are pretty typical of foil saggar pieces. You can vary the colors by firing lower/hotter.  Yellows for lower temp. 1100-1200 and maroons at 1400 ish. Much hotter than 1400 and the foil burns off.  If you wanted to get some of the black off (not that you need to) you can put the, back in the kiln and around 900 you'll see the black starting to disappear. By about 1200 all the black will be gone

Tools and Equipment / Re: Extruder Recommendation
« on: March 13, 2016, 03:26:52 PM »
Nice setup Andy.....It's nice that it is portable!

Pottery Pictures / Re: Some new mugs and glazes
« on: March 13, 2016, 03:24:52 PM »
Nice mugs Owen!! Thanks for sharing

Tools and Equipment / Re: Extruder Recommendation
« on: February 09, 2016, 01:26:19 PM »
Excellent....getting a used one is great especially for an extruder that is often not used often and they really have nothing to wear out.

Tools and Equipment / Re: Extruder Recommendation
« on: January 13, 2016, 10:06:27 PM »
Hi Cyndy,

I've had the Scott Creek 4" Aluminum Extruder for several years and have been pleased with it.  I'm not sure that it is better or worse than other, but I chose it as it was aluminum (less chance of corrosion) and 4" size.  I also purchased the die kit.  I've only used a few of the dies but it's nice having pretty much any shape I want.

Here's the link:

Pottery Pictures / Re: Deb & Jim's Kiln House
« on: December 20, 2015, 07:49:55 PM »
Cool kiln house Deb....Thanks for sharing the pics.  Looking forward to seeing some pics of the pots!


Glazes / Glazing / Re: THE Forbidden Glazes-Lead Glazes
« on: December 02, 2015, 06:43:13 PM »
Nothing I'm aware of Andy...Sorry.

Glazes / Glazing / Re: Shino Recipe - Gustin Crawl Shino
« on: November 24, 2015, 04:19:35 PM »
Thanks for posting Azor.....I'm going to be running some more Shino tests in Mid-December so hop to have some more pics/recipes to post here.

Pottery Pictures / Re: wood fire
« on: November 16, 2015, 12:33:05 PM »
Nice pics Randall!  Thanks for sharing.  One of these days I'll get involved with a wood firing.  I live near Baltimore and Baltimore Clayworks (classes and supplies) has a wood kiln that you can rent and they fire it with your help.


Pottery Pictures / Re: Layered glazes and wood firing
« on: November 13, 2015, 12:52:58 PM »
Nice Cyndy....I like the cups!!!  Thanks for posting


Pottery Pictures / Re: AAAUUUUGGGHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!
« on: November 08, 2015, 09:35:16 PM »
Bummer Deb.....I do very little handbuilding and have never handbuilt with porcelain....but that sure is a lot of cracking!!

I'm guessing it might be good to make the next set with a white stoneware or maybe a different porcelain?

As I was pondering this I did remember a time when I rolled out some small porcelain slabs and I didn't use clay fresh from the bag.  I used porcelain scraps that I had left over from some previously slabs.  I smushed them all together and then rolled out another slab.....everything looked great and all was well during bisque I saw a couple of very small cracks....after glaze there were several much larger cracks.  The moral of my story is that I should always used fresh or well wedged clay before rolling out a slab.

Maybe that helps??


Firing / Kilns / Re: Kiln Re-build
« on: October 28, 2015, 02:11:41 PM »
Hi Ann......How'd you kiln do?

Firing / Kilns / Re: Cone 6 wood kiln
« on: October 28, 2015, 02:11:00 PM »
Thanks for the update Kelly.....glad to hear that the mod worked out  Would love to build one of these someday!

Pottery Pictures / Re: Self Portrait
« on: October 24, 2015, 02:32:15 PM »
Ah ha....I use to do some work for military folks in. El Paso and several of them lived in las cruses.  The folks that lived there all seemed to like it there

Pottery Pictures / Re: More cone 6 soda/wood fire
« on: October 24, 2015, 12:46:45 PM »
Thanks for sharing Kelly!  Someday I'll get to try a wood fired/soda firing.  There is a wood/soda kiln in Baltimore that can be rented and there a group of local potters that are hoping to rent it in spring 2016

Materials / Re: Kyanite in clay bodies
« on: October 16, 2015, 08:51:30 PM »
Interesting info on the addition of Kyanite John...thanks for posting.

I do LOTS of raku, pit fire, saggar fire and use Soldate 60 for 99% of it and can't remember the last time I had a pot crack?


Pottery Pictures / Re: Self Portrait
« on: October 13, 2015, 02:46:58 PM »
Sounds like a nice plan for completion.  I saw on your clayart post that you live somewhere in the desert?  Do you live somewhere in AZ?  Just curious as I have family in Phoenix and friends near Tucson.


Pottery Pictures / Re: Self Portrait
« on: October 13, 2015, 09:49:31 AM »
Thanks for sharing Deb....look forward to seeing the finished piece. 

How will you be firing her....Cone 6?

Firing / Kilns / Re: Kiln Re-build
« on: September 22, 2015, 06:14:04 PM »
Awesome Ann!!  Glad you got it back together and am looking forward to seeing pics of finished pieces.


Thanks for posting Maria!  This is an awesome resource and couldn't possibly make it any easier for someone wanting to experiment with wood firing. The level of detail and information is awesome.  Very nice that this is offered to the pottery community for free!


General Discussion / Re: Cone Pack decal for cars
« on: September 15, 2015, 01:27:12 PM »
hehehe John....I bet that has had several people following you scratching their head wondering what the meaning of the stick is!

I'd really like it on a t-shirt!

General Discussion / Re: Cone Pack decal for cars
« on: September 15, 2015, 10:19:03 AM »
Thanks John......since you posted it thought that you might have had some relationship with the person.  I'll stop by the etsy site and send her a note about t-shirts


General Discussion / Re: Cone Pack decal for cars
« on: September 15, 2015, 09:39:14 AM »

I'd like one of these on a t-shirt. Do you think the creator would be open to making a iron on version?


General Discussion / Re: Weighing clay - curious about this image
« on: September 02, 2015, 11:26:51 AM »
I agree...looks like top row is 2 different wet pots and bottom row is the same pots either dry or bisque.

I'm guessing that the study shows that some clays have less water weight since the one on left lost more weight than the one on the right??

General Discussion / Re: slave to your clay - mel
« on: September 02, 2015, 10:46:04 AM »
Hi...Just wanted to let you know that this discussion is one that I copied from the clayart email list when I was testing the forum and to show Mel how things would look/operate so I'm not sure he is monitoring it?  You'll note that I posted all the items. 

I'm not sure what areas he monitors but you might want to post your question to the general discussion area or you can send him a private message via the forum. His username is melpots

Hopefully that makes sense?


Pottery Pictures / Re: Cone 6 soda
« on: September 02, 2015, 08:56:20 AM »
Robert....Kelly has posted more info on his kiln in the Kilns area.  Here's the link:,75.0.html

Firing / Kilns / Re: Cone 6 is down. The kiln works!
« on: August 31, 2015, 11:51:52 AM »
Great picture Kelly...Thanks!  This helps me visualize things.  It appears that I'm way more rural than you and if your neighbors didn't call the fire department then mine will probably never know what I'm doing unless I do it in the winter when the trees are bare.

Firing / Kilns / Re: Cone 6 is down. The kiln works!
« on: August 30, 2015, 08:09:23 PM »
Kelly...How much smoke did this put out?  I live in a rural area on a fairly private lot so nobody would notice a kiln, but if it puts out big plumes of smoke someone may call the fire department??

Education and Teaching / Re: Pit Firing Guide
« on: August 30, 2015, 08:05:10 PM »
Thanks.....I'm glad you found it clear and useful. I've taught pit firing for many years and never had a full handout so I'll be including this with my next pit firing class.  Hope to see some pics of pieces if you choose to do some pit firing!


General Discussion / Re: Making Home made Hot Sauce
« on: August 30, 2015, 07:36:43 AM »
Thank Maynard.......I bet you have some glaze recipes or pics of your work you could post too?

Pottery Pictures / Re: Work Samples - Ray Bogle
« on: August 29, 2015, 12:11:34 PM »
Hey Cyndy....I posted the pit fire guide to the education and training section in the forum.  It covers everything you will need to know to get started with pit/barrel firing.


Education and Teaching / Pit Firing Guide
« on: August 29, 2015, 12:06:35 PM »

The attached guide contains the basic information required to do barrel/pit firings. It's not intended to be a comprehensive guide, but should provide sufficient information to get started with this firing technique.  Other more comprehensive books are listed in the Other Resources of the guide.

Enjoy, have fun, be safe.  Please post pics of your pieces if you try this and please feel free to ask questions and I'll help if i can.


Pottery Pictures / Re: A sample of work
« on: August 27, 2015, 02:44:53 PM »
Thanks for the details. I thought it might have been "etched" in some way.  I've been working porcelain for about 6 months now....focused on throwing thinner that other clays and have enjoyed to look/feel of a nice celadon/porcelain cup

Pottery Pictures / Re: A sample of work
« on: August 26, 2015, 10:28:27 PM »
Thanks for sharing....I'm in opposite transition as you in that I've done electric and various raku, pit, saggar firing  for many years and am now learning the intricacies of gas firing.  I like your forms and their subtle details.

I'm curious how you got the texture/carved areas in the porcelain cup?   


Pottery Pictures / Re: Cone 6 soda
« on: August 26, 2015, 03:22:32 AM »
Thanks for posting Kelly.....Very nice cups!  I'd like to see a pic of the kiln and I bet others would too!

Tools and Equipment / Re: rock crusher online
« on: August 19, 2015, 03:39:03 PM »
Cool!!  Thanks for posting this in the forum. It's demonstrates a perfect way that the forum can supplement the clayart list!


Pottery Pictures / Re: Bulbous vase
« on: August 17, 2015, 07:53:29 PM »
That looks to be a "large" vase??  Pretty big for porcelain!!

I've been working with porcelain lately but just doing cups.  I work with Soldate 60 clay when making large thin's great clay for throwing large and for surviving raku/saggar/pit firing

Pottery Pictures / Re: Work Samples - Ray Bogle
« on: August 14, 2015, 10:36:44 PM »
Thanks Cyndy......I've enjoyed the uncertainty and the organicness of pit fire and saggar. Both techniques are fairly simple to accomplish.  I'm almost done with a little intro guide for pit firing that I'm going to up load here.

Based upon your pitcher and platter I'd say you're doing well for 3 years of potting :)

would be great to see some more of your work


Pottery Pictures / Work Samples - Ray Bogle
« on: August 14, 2015, 09:38:40 AM » of the nice things about the forum is the ability to add pics.  I thought I'd post a few pics of some of my work so you could see the types of things I do.  Would be great to see a few pics of everyone's work!

For many years I've worked with various "Alternative Firing Techniques" such as raku, pit fire, and saggar.  About 1yr ago I built a gas kiln and now enjoy making stoneware cups/bowls.

Also included a short video showing the final step of Naked Raku firing where all the glaze jumps off the pot :) 
Note: To view the video click on the "IMG_1533-Medium.mp4" link below the last thumbnail

Glazes / Glazing / Re: Yellow glaze that stays yellow in reduction
« on: August 12, 2015, 05:49:37 PM »

I do some cone 10 reduction firing so can't help much with cone 6 reduction but remembered Bill Schran having some Cone 6 reduction glazes on his website.  Here's a link to the cone 6 reduction page and it happens to have a yellow glaze on it:

Guess it really doesn't answer your question about a "commercial" glaze but thought I'd share anyway.


Pottery Pictures / Re: Pitcher and platter
« on: August 12, 2015, 11:02:52 AM »
Glad you are able to see the pics!!  I agree Cyndy's pieces are very nice.


Pottery Pictures / Re: Antarctica Sculptures
« on: August 11, 2015, 09:05:02 AM »
Fun cups Deb.....What type of grant did you apply for??  Just curious....Ray

Pottery Pictures / Re: Pitcher and platter
« on: August 11, 2015, 09:02:51 AM »
Hi Emily...welcome to the Clayart Forum.

You should see a thumbnail of a pitcher and a platter in the 1st message of this thread.  Just click on that small image and a larger image should pop up.

If you are not seeing the thumbnail image please contact me directly at so we can figure out what is going on.


Tools and Equipment / Re: Potter's wheel table pics
« on: August 10, 2015, 06:24:40 PM »
Interesting idea John.  Thanks for sharing. Looking forward to seeing your new studio space


Glazes / Glazing / Re: Pinholes are everywhere!
« on: August 06, 2015, 11:24:28 AM »
I wanted to mention that I usually fire Potters Choice glazes to cone 5 without any hold.  Most of the colors are a tad less shiny and helps for a few of them that have tendency to run. 

Looking forward to hearing about/seeing your results.

Pottery Pictures / Re: Beer Growlers
« on: August 06, 2015, 11:21:22 AM »
Alice...These are AWESOME!!

Pottery Pictures / Re: Porcelain Copper Red Image
« on: August 05, 2015, 12:03:04 PM »

Pottery Pictures / Re: Woodfire Work
« on: August 05, 2015, 10:59:40 AM »
Azor....I posted a couple of Shino pics and recipes in the glazes section of the forum....I'm just getting started with Shinos but so far really like them and am looking forward to exploring their subtle characteristics.

Glad you liked my website.....Ray

Firing / Kilns / Pit Firing
« on: August 05, 2015, 10:56:35 AM »
Attached are a couple of pics from a recent pit firing. I enjoy this technique as it quite easy and can be done even in the strictest of neighborhoods....if you can have a small contained fire pit you can pit fire.  There's very little smoke and the amount of flame can be easily controlled.  In the coming weeks I'm going to post a "Pit Fire for Newbies" guide on this forum that will have all the information needed to give it a try.

Glazes / Glazing / Re: Pinholes are everywhere!
« on: August 04, 2015, 10:35:40 PM »
Hi....It sounds like you've done some good troubleshooting and there's nothing more I can offer.  I did want to share though that I have some experience with the potters choice glazes and they have been very reliable and I've experienced very little issues with them and can't hardly remember seeing pinholes.  I've never used it on 181/182, but have used it on a variety of other clays without issue. 

I've fired them fast and slow and with a short hold....again no pinholes.

Sounds like making a few cups with some other clays is in order?

General Discussion / Re: ok, here we go!
« on: August 04, 2015, 03:24:18 PM »
Hi Greg...thanks for joining. I'm looking forward to the adventure!

Pottery Pictures / Re: Woodfire Work
« on: August 04, 2015, 03:22:48 PM »
Cool azor....Thanks for sharing.  I've been playing with shinos lately and enjoying the results.

I've never participated in a woodfiring....maybe someday.

Firing / Kilns / Re: Low voltage during the summer
« on: August 04, 2015, 09:03:10 AM »
Thanks for this info Arnold....Interesting that just a small drop in voltage can affect the firing time so greatly.  I'll pass this info along to a person I know that has been dealing with some strange firing issues....sometimes it fires fast, sometimes slow?  Maybe they are dealing with some voltage issues?

Pottery Pictures / Re: Pitcher and platter
« on: August 03, 2015, 01:22:08 PM »
Cool!  Steven Hill is one of the presenters at the upcoming mid-atlantic clay conference in Front Royal, VA this October.....I'm going an looking forward to learning about Steven's work.


Firing / Kilns / Re: Cone 6 is down. The kiln works!
« on: August 03, 2015, 10:07:45 AM »
Awesome Kelly!!  I suspect we're all going to be interested in seeing pics of the pieces.

Talk about using whatever you have to make a kiln!  That is definitely a kiln that probably brought a small tear to Mel's eye :)


General Discussion / Re: Congratilations and thanks
« on: August 02, 2015, 07:40:19 PM »
Thanks Floyd and am glad to hear that you like this resource! 

Mel and Arnold have been great to work with and I am in the process or transforming all available clayart archive discussions into a format that can be imported to this type of forum site.  This has been quite a challenge to link the many discussions together, but much of the work is done and I'm working on the automated import routine to import the more than 250,000 items!


Pottery Pictures / Re: Crystalline pottery
« on: August 02, 2015, 07:03:12 AM »
Thanks for posting Jacquie.......nice pics of your pieces!   I've never tried crystalline glazes......maybe someday???

Pottery Pictures / Re: Naked Raku - Ray Bogle
« on: August 01, 2015, 10:30:10 PM »
Thanks Johnny.....NR is one of my favorite firing techniques although it is quite a bit of work with the prep, slip layer application, glaze, firing, post firing cleanup, and waxing.

Pottery Pictures / Re: What I learned about celadon
« on: August 01, 2015, 10:12:01 PM »
Nice pieces Deb...Thanks for sharing!

Pottery Pictures / Re: Yunomis
« on: August 01, 2015, 03:16:28 PM »
Hi Cyndy,

Thanks for posting a pic of this Yunomi....I like the layers/depth the multiple glazes gives it!


Events and Workshops / Mid-Atlantic Clay Conference 1-4 Oct, 2015
« on: August 01, 2015, 09:02:47 AM »
If you live anywhere near Front Royal, VA you might want to consider coming to the Mid-Atlantic Clay conference on 1-4 Oct.  It's an awesome location offering lots of time to relax and hang out with a bunch of clay folks.

Here's the link:

General Discussion / Re: Pizza Stone
« on: July 31, 2015, 07:47:21 PM »
I used a kiln shelf for years as a pizza stone.  They worked perfectly.  Then I found a method of making pizza using a cast iron frying pan and now the kiln shelf is back to being a kiln shelf.


General Discussion / Re: Pizza Stone
« on: July 31, 2015, 07:46:54 PM »
take one of your older electric kiln that will fit into your
oven.  place it on the shelf.  use it.   when it gets sorta grubby and
oil/stained, burned...just us it in your kiln for one firing.
looks new again.
it will last for years.
and, i would never make one for me, or a friend...liability is
not worth it.  and, don't use one covered in kiln wash...geez.

General Discussion / Pizza Stone
« on: July 31, 2015, 07:46:09 PM »
I glazed the pizza stone I made. I wanted to be able to completely clean the stone after using. As for unglazed….. King Arthur Flour Baker’s Store offers pizza stones and advice. KAF says to put a piece of parchment paper on the stone, then put the pizza on top of the parchment paper. It’s kind of a drag when you have to chip your pizza off of a pizza stone. The point of the stone is to supply even heat to the bottom of the pizza.

While we’re on the subject. Alton Brown (Food Network) says to have unglazed tiles in your oven to help hold the heat. The idea being, if you preheat the oven - which you need to do if you are baking something - as soon as you open the oven door to put the raw baked good into the oven, all the heat comes out and the temperature in the oven drops dramatically. The tiles don’t lose heat (or very little heat is lost) when the oven door is opened. And so I went and made myself a nice slab of ^10, used my stamps to make moderate texture, and glazed it. Works great. I glazed it because I wanted to be able to wash the slab when food went exploring in the oven. Food does that sometimes.

Deb Thuman

General Discussion / Re: Beach Sand
« on: July 31, 2015, 07:45:05 PM »
oundry supply has silica sand more than likely, I used it when I worked in the sand foundry section of an art bronze foundry. Use with a lot of ventilation and or face mask. Mike Gordon

General Discussion / Re: Beach Sand
« on: July 31, 2015, 07:44:23 PM »
I'm getting a nice sand from Edgar Minerals in Florida - the same people
who mine and market EPK (Edgar Plastic Kaolin). It's a clean sand, somewhat
river-washed, so it has slightly rounded edges: gives strength and opens up
the clay without being too abrasive. Lots of meshes and combinations

Arthur Lee
Englewood, Florida

General Discussion / Beach Sand
« on: July 31, 2015, 07:43:51 PM »
no, most beach sands are not silica, they are sea shells, calcium.  (ocean)

the best sand for pottery is commercial silica sand.
it has sharp edges and works as aggregate.  and it is clean.
home depot etc will have several kinds.
i never use play sand...dirty as can be.
and, you have no idea what it is??

the sand from the mid-east deserts are round.  perfect spheres.
they never use it for building.
like the snow of Antarctica...perfect marbles.
years of blowing in wind...rolling along the floor of the land.

i shipped 200 lbs of minnesota silica sand to dubai when i taught
there.  it was a god send.  i mixed it with local clay to make a very
nice local body we fired to cone 1.

General Discussion / Re: slave to your clay - mel
« on: July 31, 2015, 07:42:51 PM »
Hi Daryl,

If adding vinegar to sand produces effervescence then you have calcium present - that makes that sand useless for pottery.

I agree that crushed silica would be the better material. Just be aware that fine crushed (means sharp edges) silica - is the stuff that causes silicosis. Best to keep that out of your lungs and studio.


General Discussion / Re: slave to your clay - mel
« on: July 31, 2015, 07:42:16 PM »
YOU CAN TEST THE CONCRETE SAND & COMPARE WITH BEACH SAND in your clay but be sure & wash the beach sand, it's got salt with it! TEST TEST! MIKE GORDON

General Discussion / Re: slave to your clay - mel
« on: July 31, 2015, 07:41:41 PM »
When you add sand to clay can you use beach sand that has been screened ? Or do you glacé to wash it first and dry it? I am making my own clay in Mexico and cannot find grog. The sand I can find is basically for concrete. Suggestions?

General Discussion / Re: slave to your clay - mel
« on: July 31, 2015, 07:41:09 PM »
Mel’s clay thoughts and my opinions: 

 Yes, each clay is different and each clay has advantages and disadvantages. NM Clay has a wonderful clay for making large sculptures. It’s great. Try to throw with it and you will need a skin graft.  Clay not being a one-size-fits-all kind of thing is why I don’t stick to just one type of clay or even one cone. Why fight the clay trying to make it do what it’s not capable of doing?

 We all come at clay from different perspectives and each perspective has value. I don’t throw. I love to hand build. There are a good number of folks on this list who don’t hand build but love to throw. Some mix their own clay. Some buy ready made clay. Both are good choices. Which is the better choice depends on what one wants to do with the clay.

As for porcelain….. Personally, I don’t find it hard to work with. Then again, I don’t try to get porcelain to do something it’s not going to do without a lot of alteration. There are other clay bodies that will do what porcelain won’t.

If there are 700 toys in the toy box, why play with only one toy?

Deb Thuman

Glazes / Glazing / Shino Recipe - Gustin Crawl Shino
« on: July 31, 2015, 07:39:20 PM »
Gustin Crawl Shino cone 10

45.0 Nepheline Syenite
10.8 F-4 Feldspar
15.2 Spodumene
10.0 EPK
15.0 Ball Clay
4.0 Soda ash

Usage Policies / Usage Policy
« on: July 31, 2015, 07:25:46 PM »
To help you gain the most from Clayart, please read and follow the rules and guidelines below.

1. No explicit, racist, obscene or vulgar language or images.

2. No posts that attack others. Please respect other members' opinions.

3. It is okay to announce classes, events, and openings. Feel free to announce equipment for sale. Please include the city and state in the subject line.

4. Links to personal blogs/homepages are allowed in member profiles and signatures. Sharing of links to helpful and relevant web sites and resources is encouraged.

5. No posts of copyrighted material that you do not own, or posts about politics or religion.

6. Ignore bothersome members. If someone on the forum bothers you just ignore their posts.

7. Report posts that violate the rules by selecting the "Report to Moderator" at the top right corner of the post.

8. Please welcome new members. the same questions are asked repeatedly from year to year. Please do not discourage people from asking questions that are in the archives, because new answers to old questions often contain information not found in the archives.

9. Use descriptive titles for new posts. Avoid "generic" post subjects like "Help" or "Question".

10. Members that do not abide by the rules may be banned from further access to this Clayart Forum

User Guide / User Guide
« on: July 31, 2015, 08:18:45 AM »
The attached User Guide provides new users with information / instructions about most of the common forum functions.

General Discussion / sensible solutions
« on: July 30, 2015, 08:50:53 AM »
it has been fun going over my notes and looking at the
plans from jim mckinnell.  early 60's.  (see my facebook page.)

he made things so simple...non-complex.

he stressed that you make the kiln to fit your needs.
it can be a top loader, front loader, arch, lid beams
or brick beams.  he talked about using a big set of kiln shelves
for the roof.  then insulating the shelves with earth etc.

i know for sure, that he jogged something in my brain about
simplicity.  it is just a box, fill it with heat and let it cool.

there were so many rules at the time..bag walls, arch roof only,
a certain size and shape that would let the heat move.(total bs)..and the
worst rule of all...huge flu...that was in the 80 sq inch mode.

so many of those kiln plans were worthless.  huge stacks, huge
outlet of heat and don't even think of the waste of was
crazy.  long firing schedules that again are worthless.  long pre
heat that is jt abernathy, jim had a feel for kilns.
sort of understood what the problem was, and how to solve it.
it amazes me today how i was by accident,  put in the wave length
of both of stuck with me.

it was sheer accident that i found the mckinnell plans...and, i to this
day, do not know from were they came.  nils was a huge fan of
jt.  so, jt ideas flowed to me from nils.  it sort of came together for
me.  my first garage gas kiln worked like a charm.  it was a perfect
8 hour kiln.  about 30 squares...and it had a 40 sq inch flu.
by accident.  and, i still think that accident had a big affect on
nils...he just could not understand how my kiln worked with such
a small flu.  then he experimented and it worked for him as well.
(industry used a much smaller flu than potters and that seemed
to make it all come together for nils in his writing.)

anyway, my brain is in high gear.  lots of things and people make us
who we are.  i was a very lucky boy.
( i did call nan mckinnell after jim died.  i told her how much
he meant to me, even though we had not met in person.  she
was very thankful that i called....she too felt that jim never got
the credit for early softbrick kilns...and, she was correct. )
there were a lot of big mouths that took credit for almost everything.
but, the way of the world.

General Discussion / slave to your clay - mel
« on: July 29, 2015, 10:26:08 AM »
if you pick a certain commercial clay body as your basic every day
body...well, you become a slave to that body.  it will only
do so much, it will have limits, it will not do all, all the time.

it is one of the problems of `ready made` clay.
in fact there is another problem, in most cases you
do not even know what is in the body...secret of the

it is why i always encourage serious potters/artists to buy
a pug mill.  (it is not a frill, and as you age it will pay for
itself a thousand you never throw away clay...ever.
(and time saving, work saving tools are never frills.)

listening to the problems of warping porcelain sort of is the reason
i am writing this post.

if i had that body to work with, and was going to make
big platters...well, the first thing i would do is open the body
a bit.  a clean small particle sized silica sand would be added.
it would still be porcelain, but much easier to work with.  and
there are some very nice porcelain grogs can be used that
would enhance the workability of the clay.

it sure could be wedged in, or slam and cut layers with
added sand, but a pug mill would make fast work of it.

i had a lot of scrap around the studio, plus a trailer full
from the farm and hay, made a lot of throwing
clay the last two days.

it was a mixture of cone 10 clays.  even some industrial clay
that tim brought in his truck.  it is all basic stoneware.
mixed in will be an ideal stoneware.
i add silica sand, fine grog, ochre, and lake superior sand.
after a few hours it is my standard speckled body.  no one
could even guess that it is not my standard...that is my standard.
mixed multi stoneware clays.  and, as i say a thousand
is `my` clay body...not some clay companies body.

porcelain clay is just hard to work with.  it takes practice, patients
and knowledge of timing.  it is slow to work with.

sushi plates are often a slab system pot.  i sure would not throw a
sushi platter...i would roll out the clay, cut it into a rectangle and
make a slight roll to it, and add four feet, or a cross slab lift system.
let the bottom of the slab rest on the table and leave it unglazed.
it would take 15 minutes to make a nice platter...and it would fire
like a dream.
why fight the system.  let the clay do what it wants.
it makes the fight much easier.

Firing / Kilns / Re: relay replacement question
« on: March 24, 2015, 03:47:20 PM »

Firing / Kilns / Re: relay replacement question
« on: March 24, 2015, 03:47:20 PM »
?I've been having a similar problem with a single-relay kiln, and found that the connectors were not making good contact (years of heat softening the metal), causing shorting out of the unit. One of my repair consultants mentioned that Paragon has gotten around the heat problem by upping the wiring to the relays to 12-gauge, instead of the 14-gauge originally used. Makes sense, as smaller wire creates more resistance, translate that to more heat. I've gotten ours to behave by making sure that the connectors are "crimped" onto the lugs, but do plan to re-wire that circuit the next time i'm in the box (replacing all the connectors at the same time).

Firing / Kilns / Re: relay replacement question
« on: March 24, 2015, 03:46:38 PM »
I've only had to do it twice. There are 3 relays on my ConeArt. I replaced
one, then about 2 months later the second failed (after about 300 firings).
The third however seems to be fine (18 months (and 30 or 40+ firings)

Other than the pain of having a relay going out mid-firing I'm not sure
that doing them all at once brings a huge benefit. Thermocouples on the
other hand I would definitely replace at once.


Firing / Kilns / Re: relay replacement question
« on: March 24, 2015, 03:46:16 PM »
My experience has been that any relay can go bad at any time, even if it was just replaced the previous week. This is doubly sure to happen during an important firing.
I just keep extra relays on hand for the inevitable.


Firing / Kilns / Re: relay replacement question
« on: March 24, 2015, 03:45:51 PM »
mine seem to go when the connectors oxidize and get hot, melting the
plastic case.


Firing / Kilns / relay replacement question
« on: March 24, 2015, 03:45:21 PM »

Pottery Pictures / Tea bowls #3 from Mel Jacobson
« on: March 19, 2015, 06:14:46 PM »
Excellent examples of Chawan

Pottery Pictures / More tea bowls - Mel Jacobson
« on: March 19, 2015, 06:13:43 PM »
More tea bowl pics from Mel Jabocson

Pottery Pictures / Tea Bowl Pics - Mel Jacobson
« on: March 19, 2015, 06:12:11 PM »
Here's some tea bowl pics sent from Mel Jacobson

General Discussion / Cute Story
« on: March 19, 2015, 05:06:15 PM »

we took in my mother in law because she was so ill, only
had a month to live.
she lived with us for `15` years.
don't predict.

anyway...while with us:
she said.
`my first radio was a crystal set and the antenna wire went to
my metal springs of my bed, we had one of the first
phones, we had a zenith radio during ww2, tv was new,   i saw a b17 then i rode on
a boing 747 to japan`.
she saw the first cell phones and in her life time...did
 emails and wrote on a computer.  she would have
loved the ipad.  she died at 93.  she saw the entire modern
electronic age evolve in front of her eyes.
she saw the social changes and lived it.

she had cataract surgery at 90 and wound up with
20/20 vision for her last three years.  amazing.

she donated her body to the UofM med school.
and i told her...`hell mom, you always wanted to go
to med school...` she laughed out loud.
no fear.  one wonders if anyone will have seen more
change in life than she did.  she was alive when
the wright brothers flew the first plane, she saw the
first ford car...the first refrigerator... she had ice delivered
three days a week.she saw it all.

she felt blessed to have been a part of it.

from: minnetonka, mn
new book:

General Discussion / Re: Mel's love of science
« on: March 19, 2015, 05:03:49 PM »
es, and don't forget all the social changes that followed (and are following) the technological advances.


General Discussion / Re: Mel's love of science
« on: March 19, 2015, 05:03:31 PM »
If it were not for technology advances, I would not have been able to jump start my car in the 40C below temp of last night.  My battery pack did not fail me. 

Off to watch my six year old Grandson play hockey.

Sent from my iPad

General Discussion / Re: Mel's love of science
« on: March 19, 2015, 05:03:07 PM »
My husband had a heart attack in 1993 in class at Penland and after a week in intensive care at Spruce Pine  after beung advised he needed 3 ,had 5 bypasses , He under 3 weeks later ( in his 51 st birthday) reaching home. He,just under 3 weeks later, walked our daughter down the isle and gingerly danced the first dance with her.
He, had lived an active life celebration our 51st anniversary last fall and still works and directs deconstructing the home.
Happy Valentine's Day, Sweetheart.
Hoping you have the same outcome.Best wishes.

Sent from my Verizon Wireless 4G LTE DROID

General Discussion / Re: Mel's love of science
« on: March 19, 2015, 05:02:30 PM »
I also never cease to be amazed by the advances that surround us and impact on our lives.

My Grandmother, like so many of her generation did not survive the birth of my mother,  and were it not for the advances in medical science and practice I would not still have our Daughter and the two glorious Granddaughters she, with some attendant difficulties, produced.

Like you I've had bits mended, knees replaced, and I'm about to have bypass surgery, which means I should have the continued opportunity to annoy everyone around me for a bit longer.

We are very darned lucky.

Steve M

Steve Mills, Bath, UK 

General Discussion / Re: Mel's love of science
« on: March 19, 2015, 05:02:10 PM »
Nice post, thanks Mel.

I also think we need to distinguish between science (and engineering and
technology) and scientists.

The former goes ever marching onward. The latter can be just as full as
crap and blather and crackpot ideas as the next person.

(If you want to see a scientist who has - at least in the eyes of his peers
- gone a little nuts, look at Brian Josephson, who won the Nobel Prize in
Physics for quantum tunnelling. He now is a firm believer in, and
researches, telepathy, telekinesis and parapsychology).

Robert Harris

General Discussion / Mel's love of science
« on: March 19, 2015, 05:01:36 PM »
i would not be alive today if it was not for
modern medical science.  my heart procedure
was beyond hi tech.  i went home the next day.
i could have walked to my room after six hours of
surgery.  no pain.  easy.

i have two new shoulders, 100% repaired.
i am throwing 20 lb bowls like i was 25 years old with
no pain.

my prostate cancer was `cured` with a technique
of freezing the tumor.  it was a few hours in the hospital.
the same cancer killed my brother.

my ipad mini three is one of the most amazing tools i have
ever held in my hands.  the picture quality is stunning.
and, how does it know what page i am on in my kindle????
i open my kindle page on my mini and it is on the same page
as my kindle that i just read one hundred pages on..

the camera is world class.
my iphone is a miracle.  i can travel the world and
call home every day. clear as a bell.  instant.

and, just for new 20 volt drill/hammer drives a four inch
screw into a board in seconds.  the battery will last for
many hours.  just think of the science of batteries..amazing.
and, you can all add to the list.  500 times.

my new paragon small kiln just fired a perfect bisque with my scheduled timing
and shuts down by itself.   perfect.

my point today was very metaphorical.  it is odd how
the world forgets what is was like 40 years ago.
or what we were told as fact.  it changes every day.
'robot horses that are almost real.  and few realize how
much is made with robots..

but, we have to keep our minds open, look for new ideas
in your own work.  try things and observe.  join the modern world,
don't reject it.

as steve jobs says so well.  `don't think of yourself as stupid, and
important people have all the might be surprised
how dumb important people can be`  (sorta what he said.)
but, i always encourage people to find their own intelligence.  become
competent...with yourself.

from: minnetonka, mn

Firing / Kilns / Re: Kiln elements making black dust
« on: March 19, 2015, 05:00:40 PM »
Hi, A number of years ago the representative of the element mfg. company
located in my town, (now closed) asked me to test one of their new elements.
I did so and noticed the black dust. It finally disappeared but my report to
the company was that it was not a good element to introduce into an electric
kiln.  I don't recall what they said was the cause of this dust as it was
back in the early 70s.  They manufactured elements for all kinds of
equipment needing heat. They were quite an asset to our town and were sorry
to see it go.

Hope this answers your question.


Firing / Kilns / Kiln elements making black dust
« on: March 19, 2015, 05:00:11 PM »
Fred Paget wrote:    "I measured the grooves' length with a piece of rope
and stretched the closed coil to the correct length and installed it in the
test kiln. It fired fine and I had used it  a few times, when I noticed a
black dust was being made  from the element, It is a very fine black dust
and it is coming from the element. It stained some small kiln posts a blue
black color and is building up on the small Advancer sample I have on the
bottom of the kiln. I have not noticed it on the ware."

Firing / Kilns / Re: Bag Walls
« on: March 19, 2015, 04:59:00 PM »
Had to fire in a tall narrow catenary for a while. Two venturi burners
in one side, chimney flue on the other. Bag wall got left out after a
rebuild, and heat either went straight across if the damper was wide
(cold on top) or settled at the top (cold on the bottom, never hit temp)
if it was tight. The difference was tiny!  I rebuilt the bagwall with a lot
of spaces between bricks, sending some flame across and some up,
and it made the damper a whole lot less fussy.  The whole kiln could
have been better designed, but it wasn't mine to pull apart. The bag
wall was a scattering device, and in a kiln without much room for heat 
to spread, the fine-tuning of the bagwall made the difference between
a usable, responsive (though cramped) kiln and a whole lot of cussing.

I've never fired an Alpine updraft in its original form, but I've heard they
had/have some sort of diffuser grating (mythical beasts, those grates,
like unicorns...) I got to where I could fire those suckers dead even, top
to bottom, but setting a low deflector brick about 2/3 of the way back in
the flame trough did wonders for the front-to-back evenness. Wouldn't
call it a bag wall, exactly, but it was an easy fix for an obvious problem.

I think folks may use the term 'bag wall' for a whole range of flame-
guiding structures of varying configurations and utility.

Firing / Kilns / Re: Bag Walls
« on: March 19, 2015, 04:58:35 PM »
Well Mel;

I have often used bagwalls on downdraft kilns having burners that entered from the side to defect the flame upwards and they work pretty well in that case.

Cheers, Hank

Firing / Kilns / Re: Bag Walls
« on: March 19, 2015, 04:58:15 PM »
> i have never had a bag wall in any kiln
> i have ever used...ever.  no bag walls at the farm.
> i think they are an old theory that was
> used when wood was used in the kiln...sort
> of protect the ware from flying junk.
> in a fine gas kiln...what are you protecting the
> pots from?????heat????


Firing / Kilns / Bag Walls
« on: March 19, 2015, 04:57:26 PM »
LL the old ALPINE gas kilns we had at California College of Arts & Crafts, now called Cal, College of The Arts, in Oakland and now in San Francisco too, had bag walls. Two forced air burners on each side of the door with target bricks half way in, and kiln shelves that slid into slots in the back wall acted as shields for the ware at the bottom. Of course that was when Alpine's had a double arch. The old days for sure.

Mike Gordon

General Discussion / Re: Left - Right
« on: March 19, 2015, 04:55:48 PM »
If the handle is on the wrong side just drink out of the other side of your mouth!


General Discussion / Re: Left - Right
« on: March 19, 2015, 04:55:28 PM »
As a joke for a friend  who had a polish friend I made a mug with the handle on the inside & a dribble hole under the lip!

 Mike Gordon

General Discussion / Re: Left - Right
« on: March 19, 2015, 04:54:52 PM »
Hi Jim -
I am left-handed, and I put my handles right in the middle so that my mugs will work equally well for left-handed or right handed people.  It's so frustrating when I pick up a mug with the handle on the right side and I have to turn it all the way around, which expends extra effort, and then I am forced to drink out of the wrong side of the mug.  The indignity of it!
- Vince

Vince Pitelka
Appalachian Center for Craft
Tennessee Tech University 

General Discussion / Left - Right
« on: March 19, 2015, 04:54:27 PM »
Do the lefties here put their handles on the left or right side of mugs? 

*                       JIM BROWN*

*          Brown's Pottery Hiddenite*

*  "Making handmade pottery . . . *

*                                                . . . since the 1700's"  *
                   *   386 479-4515*
*   <>*

Glazes / Glazing / Re: Glaze SG Question
« on: March 19, 2015, 04:53:21 PM »

Glazes / Glazing / Re: Glaze SG Question
« on: March 19, 2015, 04:52:48 PM »
Be sure not to add too much soda ash solution.
Make the solution by adding soda ash to hot water until not more soda ash will go into solution.
For a 5000 gram batch I have used this saturated solution adding only a tablespoon or two.


Glazes / Glazing / Glaze SG Question
« on: March 19, 2015, 04:52:21 PM »
> I have a small amount of soda ash solution resolves the gelling of the
> gertsley borate.
> Bill
> ---- David Lyons via Clayart <> wrote:
> =============
> My observation is that I too get "pudding" with GB in my glaze recipes
> especially the longer they sit in the bucket.  If I add water, that
> addition affects the final glaze results compared to a fresh batch.  I just
> purchased a 50 lb bag (that I have not weighed yet) and wonder how I can
> counteract the thickening over time?  I like the recipes and would like to
> have consistent results from glaze load to glaze load.
> Dave Lyons

Tools and Equipment / Re: Tools and such...
« on: March 19, 2015, 04:51:20 PM »
It's not about whether the writing is on the upward face of the pencil, but
whether the orientation of the lettering is right-side-up or upside-down
relative to the user. If it's right-side-up and facing inward in one hand,
then it can only be right-side-up in the other hand when facing outward.


Tools and Equipment / Tools and such...
« on: March 19, 2015, 04:46:01 PM »
Mel said: i was left handed so the written part of any pencil was upside down
Huh????? Handedness doesn't matter, the pencil can be turned written side up or written side down no matter the handedness of the pencil holder. Did I miss the joke?

Tools... what is needed? Me? I have a box full of tools. I still grab the nearest handy thing to measure the height of the pot. Mugs are the height of the textured part of the needle tool. The tape measure is in the box. Jim cut up a sheet of dry wall and made me nice square pieces with duct tape around the edge so I have something to put my pots on while they dry. I have the formulas for plates, platters, bowls written on one of the squares. Plates: 9" circle, two coils up, two coils out. When I made a pizza stone from mica clay, I used one of the squares as a template for the stone. Perfect pizza size. Yes, I do use the dry wall squares for drying clay. Jim made sure to make them the perfect size for tiles. Square, tiles, square, tiles - repeat as necessary and end with a square.

I've trained myself to put ideas in a sketchbook rather than on the backs of envelopes. What with e-mail and all there aren't as many envelopes as there used to be.

I stopped at the Starbucks drive through yesterday after court. Got a large hot chai. When I removed the cardboard insulator thingy from the cup..... the ideas started. I can use that for a template. I can make the template as tall or as short as I want. Oh, look..... I can take the cup apart for a template. I think the lid would make a good size circle for the bottom of a bowl. Or maybe it would work for the bottom of a soup mug. Maybe.... I'm working with ^6 and there's more shrinkage than when I work with ^04.   But the cup.... I might like a mug that size and shape. With a template, I can roll on the texture while the slab is flat then try really hard not to smoosh the texture when I join the edges. That reminds me... I wanted to make texture rolls. I like the rolls in the store, but I want something that puts MY designs on the slab. Hmmmm.... how deep to make the texture so that the funky glazes I have will pool in the texture and do cool things. If I take a piece of clay and write my initials in it - I use Hebrew letters for my initials - I can use that piece to make a piece with raised initials going in the proper direction. Then I can use that piece to press my initials into the bottoms of my pieces.

I need something to put on top of the empty crust in the pie plate so the crust doesn't warp when I blind bake it. If I measure the bottom of the pie plate (reminds me, I want to make some pie plates), I can make a slab that will fit inside the plate and on top of the crust and keep the crust where it's supposed to be when I blind bake the crust. What about quiche? Do I want a deeper or shallower pie plate for quiche? Let's see.... 9" circle Jim made which allows for 10% shrinkage. Coil up to the height of the wooden rib Jim made me. Put handles on the sides? Put a rim on top? Handles. I cut them as long as the handle on the fetling knife. My swirly handles suck. I make C-shaped handles. Reminds me... I need to make a texture roll the width of a handle I like. Handles... wide as the texture roll, length of the handle of the fetling knife, applied to mugs the height of the textured part of the handle of the needle tool.

Hey Mel... you ever use a left handed hammer?

Deb Thuman
I can honestly say that I was never affected by the question of the success of an undertaking. If I felt it was the right thing to do, I was for it regardless of the possible outcome.   Golda Meir

Clayart mailing list


Materials / Re: Materials
« on: March 19, 2015, 04:42:28 PM »
I've always wanted to try cobalt sulfate in pit firing or saggar firing.

Materials / Re: Materials
« on: March 19, 2015, 04:41:50 PM »
Sumi Wrote:

I use Crocus Martis in one of my favorite Iron Red Glazes.  It is an impure form of Red Iron Oxide.  I use it in combination with Spanish Red Iron Oxide.  I have used fluorospar, it is a feldspar with fluorine in it.  Some people use sulphates in Raku, from what I remember.  Antimony is poisonous, from what I remember.  I also have granular manganese and Illmenite.  Not sure about Barium Sulfate.  I have never used any barium compounds.  I seem to remember that frits starting with "4" instead of "3" are lead based, I hope this helps.
Judy WilsonJudy's Kiln Repairformerly of Del Val Potter's Supply Co.

Materials / Materials
« on: March 19, 2015, 04:40:31 PM »
Here it is:

I have some questions about materials we have in inventory
at school that have been on the shelf for more than 20 years.
I wonder if anyone uses these things anymore, and how and why?

Here is the list:

Barium Sulfate
Iron Sulfate
Crocus Martis (Iron sulfate?)
Cobalt Sulfate
Granular Manganese
Granular Ilmenite

Frit 417D  What is it??

Frit TV48P (P might mean Plumbic--"lead")?
This one is so old it was shipped in a fiber bag.

I know the granular things used to be added to bodies for speckles.

If anyone wants any of these materials, please let me know.



Education and Teaching / Video - Tour of Mel Jacobson's Studio
« on: March 18, 2015, 10:07:17 PM »
Here's a link to a youtube video of Mel Jacobson's studio:

Glazes / Glazing / Shino Recipe - Shaner Shino
« on: March 18, 2015, 03:25:49 PM »
Here's a shino glaze recipe:

Shaner's Shino
Cone 10 redux

Nepheline Syenite 38.61
Spodumene 29.70
Kaolin 4.95
Ball Clay 16.83
Bentonite 1.98
Soda Ash 7.92

Firing / Kilns / Re: Neebie Question - Firing a kiln??
« on: March 18, 2015, 02:07:24 PM »
Fire it carefully  :)

Firing / Kilns / Neebie Question - Firing a kiln??
« on: March 18, 2015, 02:06:50 PM »
This is a test question about kilns.....I just got a new electric kiln and want to know how to fire it?

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