Monday, April 23, 2007

Wax Resist Tea Bowl

I don't know why I haven't tried wax resist with my raku pieces earlier.
I was expecting a turquoise crackle glaze but ended up with a burgandy maroon. The glaze I used was "Ferguson's Turquoise." If you look close, you can see one speck of turquoise on the lower left of the bowl.
Anyway, to acheive this result I glazed the interior of the bowl and then painted hot wax on the interior. Then I dipped the rim in the hot wax to create a nice even glaze line around the rim of the bowl.
Holding the bowl upside down by the footring I dripped hot wax over the pot (to drip the wax I used a two-inch paint brush) . Once that was dry I dunked the bowl in the glaze bucket two times. The glaze ran off the pot where there were traces of wax. Once the footring was sponged off I fired-up the kiln.
It was a really windy day to be firing and I think the reason why I got red instead of turquoise was I had a hard time controlling the environment in my kiln. I had kiln shelves set up as wind breaks but even they kept blowing down. I was just too anxious to fire. In the end it worked out quite well and I am very happy with the end result.

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Rusty Raku

Rusty Raku turned a year old just over a month ago. Unfortunately I didn't keep a kiln log so I'm not sure how many times I've fired 'Ol Rusty, but I'm guessing about 60 to 75 times.

A recent addition to my burner set-up is the 100-pound propane tank that my friend John gave me.

I still have the small 20-pounders but am using the "Big Mamma" on the "Big Bertha" unless I'm taking Rusty on a Road Trip.

I'm keeping a firing record on the tank, writing with a permanent marker the dates and times of firing. I'm wondering how many firings I can get out of Big Mamma?

I kept this kiln outside for the past year covering the top hole with a piece of kiln shelf and laying a brick against the burner port to keep the critters out. It has been rained on and snowed on pretty hard and has held-up just fine, except for the rust on the outside.

I still have all the materials to make another kiln so perhaps I should tackle that project this spring and give Rusty a little brother.