Crochet Bowls

Today I got my crochet bowls back from the kiln.  I am very happy with the glazes and certain elements of them.  I like how they have transformed from CAD into something organic and handmade.

I have made one big mistake in the making of these and that is that I used porcelain with a much lower firing temperature glaze.  The result of this is that over time the glazes will crack.  Next time I will be buying in some earthen wear slip to try and this should stop them breaking.

  

Ceramic Update

I finally got my shot glasses back from their third and final firing.  Again they are a little smaller than I had hoped .  Some are more useable than others but I have enough for a collection.  I am really happy with the finish on the glaze with the final green added.  It gives the pieces individuality and makes then feel more organic. 

 
I am also really happy with the way the detailing from the rough print has came out in contrast to the smoother mold printed. 

 

Over the last few weeks I have been having problems with the goblets bending at the stem and touching other items in the kiln.  Although I gave a few of them a knock and they came apart they are imperfect and I plan to redesign the whole thing. 

   
  
The pint tumblers are working out great.  I have a perfect set of four now and a few more in the process of making.

  
 

Ceramic Ware- Update

Today I got back my shot glasses from their first glaze firing.  I have painted them all  with the green glaze I bought and tested a few months ago.  I decided to paint them all different  to each other so that when they are being used people know which one is their glass.

I am still not having a lot of luck with the wine goblets.  The one that I tested last I left to dry before cleaning up to see if it holds together better.  When I came to clean it up I noticed it had a slight lean and a small crack at the bottom of the stem.  It is still in tact and I have put it in to bisque fire however I am not very hopeful and I plan to redesign the whole goblet and start again to make it stronger.

 

On the plus side I got back two more pint glasses which I glazed today.  I am very please with how these are working out and I will soon have a set.

 

Happy Ceramic Day…. So Far!

The plan that I came up with yesterday to leave the goblet alone to dry is so far working.  It was still standing after four hours so I am keeping my fingers crossed that this approach will work. 

 I also managed to cast another pint tumbler today.  I am starting to become really quick at these.  They cast like a dream, are easy to take out of the mold and are also very quick to clean up as they only have two seams.  The following image also shows the goblet I made on Monday which is also cracked at the stem. 

 This afternoon I got all my shot glasses from the bisque firing as well as one of the pint glasses.  I glazed these with clear porcelain glaze.  I plan to fire for a third time with the green glass I used for my test pieces.  I dipped all the vessels into the glaze and then touched up where my finger prints were with a paint brush.  Afterwards I removed the glaze from the underneath by rubbing them on a wet carpet. 

 Shot glasses after bisque firing.

  Vessels after glazing and painting over finger prints.

First Goblet Sample

Today I was able to take my first goblet finished sample finished with a tin glaze Out the kiln.  I was very happy to see it standing, despite cracking at the base of the stem several times.  I was fairly happy with the finish however parts of the glaze hadn’t stuck because I should have stirred it a little longer.  I will sample more before choosing my final finish.

 I also managed to get my 3rd goblet out of the mold today.  I cut this to the edges at the top  to the edge of the glass as apposed to round in my first sample.

 So that the stem didn’t break I cleaned up most of the vessel whilst it was in partial parts of the mold to support it.  This approach worked very effectively.  The stem only wobbled slightly when I was putting the finishing touches to the piece.

 I finished of cleaning up this piece with a wet sponge which made this piece far neater than my previous two samples.  I feel that I am now heading towards the quality I am aiming for in my final pieces.

Shot glass samples

I got back my shot glass samples from the second firing and glazing.  The red glaze was fired slightly too high and the colour burnt out.      I was however very pleased with the green.  It has a nice turquoise sheen to the surface.

    

Within the samples I experimented with different ways of glazing them.  Some of the samples had two coats anfd others had three.  I found that the ones that had three coats was too much and the glaze ran onto the kiln shelf.  Some of these broke when removing from the kiln and looked unsightly.  I shall therefore be glazing my final glasses with two coats.

  
This is my favourite design that I feel I will be using for the final run I will be making.  I have glazed the inside with white as it is non-toxic.

 Over the last few weeks I have also been re-printing the press molds at a greater size to take into account shrinkage.  I sampled this the other night.  I tried to make the walls a little thinner than in the samples so they will feel a little more delicate.  I had problems with one part of the top of the mold which has a deep overhang.  I cant remove the clay without this part ripping.  I have decided I will redesign this half of the mold and re-print it before making the full set.

Tumbler

This afternoon I have been building a 3D model of a design for a drinking tumbler.  Because of the height of the piece I will find this hard to press from a mould so I am going to try and slip cast this along side the wine goblets.  The CAD model is just over 16cm which I am hoping will give a good size after taking into account shrinkage during the firing process.

tumbler2

I am going for a similar design to my whisky glasses as I wish for the same theme to run through out the collection that will be used in my kitchen.  These pieces will be smooth all over as apposed to the whisky vessels which have texture down one side.

 

Whisky glass pressing

Today I have been trying out the press mold for my whisky glasses.  The first few I did were a little floored but the more I made the better they became.  My 3D printed chizel was perfect for cutting off the excess clay from the top of the mold.  I was keen to see the effect of using molds printed on different machines.  The mold from the ultimaker gave a much smoother finish to the pieces.  I like the effect of the two contrasting textures.

 Close up showing both textures in the clay.
 Selection I have made so far.
Some of the vessels came out with areas that were not smooth.  I found placing the clay back into the molds and pressing them again sorted out this problem.

Mold before use.


Clay pressed into the mold.


Clay cut with 3D printed chisel.

To speed up the drying process I used my hair dryer.  This worked well for the clay but warped the outside of the orange mold slightly with the heat.  The inside seems to not have been effected which is good.


Clay smoothed down and drying  also showing warped mold.

Porcelain bowl glazing

This afternoon I glazed my porcelain olive bowls ready for their final firing. I used a white mat crack glaze on the outside of the pieces and varied colours on the interior.  I initially wanted some kind of metallic glaze for the inside of the bowls but realise this would mean I wouldn’t be able to use them for food.  I opted instead for orange, red, purple and turquoise interiors.


  
 The porcelain will be fired at 1260 degrees.  I’m looking forwards to seeing the final pieces.

Porcelain bowls

I have got my bowls back from the bisque firing. Some of them are looking good.  Two are a little wonky due to both using the clay too thinly as well as the mold being made from plastic not plaster.  I am going to Glaze them on Monday so I hope they work out in the next firing.