Friday, July 20, 2012

How It's Stacked Up

Time to get ready for the show!
I mean craft fair thingy.
Art fair.
So I was thinking maybe some you, the readers, might not know exactly what the hell I'm talking about when I well, talk about loading a kiln.
I mean you gotta sort of know what you're doing, you don't just pile things in and hope for the best.
Well okay, you sort of do but stacking a kiln take some practice.
So this is the kiln:

It's a called a top loader for obvious reasons and it has a capacity of about ten cubic feet.
You don't use all that space for there's some furniture that goes in it.
Top shelf, where I put stuff that wouldn't get damaged by falling dust:

Those things the pots are sitting on are called kiln shelves.
They are made out of some refractory material, I think in this case mullite, but there are some nicer shelves made out of silica carbide.
The kiln is about 27 inches deep, so there's more under there:

You take all the stuff out of the top and start pulling shelves.
The shelves sit on those square looking thingys called posts.
There's one more layer under that one.
Those are the refired bowls I did, and none of them came out okay:

Pinholes in the glaze.
There are a lot of reasons why that happens, and the potter has to sort of investigate by trial and error what's causing them.  They aren't good for sometimes the bubbles have sharp edges, think glass, and food can get stuck in them which is not very sanitary.
All of this low fire stuff is glazed all over, even the bottoms, so I have to set them on stilts, which are three footed wire thingys, so that the bottoms don't actually touch the shelf.
One bowl actually got tipped over and stuck to the shelf on top:

Add that one to the reject pile!
Which grows and grows.
The reject pile I mean.
I expect about a ten to twenty percent loss for each firing which is not that bad.  I used to toss out about a third just because they didn't pass my Intensive Inspection Process(IIP).
My Wonderbread bowls came out okay:

Now it's time to pack it all up as I leave on morn to hit the Haleiwa Arts Festival.
Two days of shmarming with potential victi-uh I mean patrons and hawking my stuff.
Well, nobody said the bicycle bling was free.
If you know what I mean.


rlove2bike said...

You do great work. I think they are awesome!!

Thanks for the post!!

limom said...


Chandra said...

I liked your coffee mugs. But, I can't find 'em in Etsy.
Are you sold out?

The bowls look great. I like the polka dotted ones.

Have fun at the fair!

Peace :)

limom said...

Chandra, right now I am all sold out of them mugs.
I plan to make more, probably around xmas time.
Actually I have a couple of them sitting around here, I just have to find them and glaze them.
If you really need one now, email me.