2/19/12 Salt Firing Unloaded

I unloaded a group firing from the salt kiln at the Craft Guild of Dallas today. I say group firing, but the load consisted predominantly of my pots. James Olney and I fired the kiln in varying states of reduction (heavy for body, light to ramp up, and medium to heavy at the high temp) until cone 9 was pretty well gone and 10 started softening. After cone 9 fell we salted in front of the burner ports, roughly 3-4 lbs total in various newspaper burritos. After the fumes cleared in the chimney exhaust, we shut the kiln down before cone 10 fell. (I wanted to go a bit more conservative with the temperature since my bright green glaze tends to run right off the pot when over-fired)

Here's an overview of the kiln load, minus 2-3 small pieces.

I had a high success rate, with a low occurrence of glaze flaws and warping. Yes, I did have 4 pieces that will need to be re-fired and/or scrapped. I also had some pieces with noticeable warping, and some periodic shmutz inside on the bottom. Salt firing will do that, and porcelain definitely has a bad reputation for going wonky. I think the bottom shelf in the back might have either been too cool or lost temperature too quickly during cooling, due to the peculiar glaze textures down there.

Nice pieces with a green hue characteristic of this glaze in a soda firing, which is a telltale sign that residual soda fumed in the kiln.

At any rate, I was delighted by the brightness of the colors on many of the pieces. The previous firing in this kiln received soda treatment, and occurred during a recent Jeff Oestreich workshop. The residual soda is likely the culprit for the brighter colors, which I am thrilled about. That same soda did opaque my liner glazes more than I’d prefer. The Shaner Clear becomes positively satin in soda, so it ended up somewhere in between with this firing. Oh well, se la vie.

Some Bright Green on the left, Chung Satin Blue on the right two, with a lot of atmospheric variation.

Ryan's Green-black glaze on a pitcher. An ideal glaze effect.

Now that my general inventory is topped off, it’s time to fill a trophy order and create a set of narrative lidded boxes for a gallery show. I also need to catch up on making some plates. I plan to get out to a craft sale or some such event soon to clear some of the new stock, also. Until next time!

1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. gundam
    Mar 10, 2012 @ 09:30:42

    thanks.very good blog and very good share.


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