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updated mon 11 apr 05


Joyce Lee, Jim Lee on thu 18 sep 97

I followed directions, as suggested on Clayart, and found Charlie Riggs
on the North Carolina pages, but only found his work in raku
(beautiful!) but not in pit-firing. Am I doing something wrong?

Back to masks and teapots/tea bowls (joyfully) in the Mojave

Carol Donner on fri 5 mar 99

What is the best way to apply the sulfates and carbonates to a piece before
sawdust firing so that I can get great colors? If I soak them, they seem
to break, no matter how long I dry them. thanks

Claudia MacPhee on sun 10 apr 05

Hello All, I was surprised to see pics of pit-fired pots getting a bath from
the hose. It is funny, I have read posts saying that the best colours are
develpoed by long slow cooling, others that the faster the cooling the
better the colours. I have tried both ways (didn't try the hose thought, too
chicken!). My experience seems to be that it really makes little diffrence.
We have 6 diffrent woodstoves (heat in house, cookstove in house, one in
each greenhouse, one in shop and another in sauna) and I have tried them
all, some don't get hot enough and the colours are blah. The best are the
larger stove in greenhouse #1 and the sauna. The sauna stove cools rapidly
but gets red hot, pots put in the front of the stove are mostly white with
tons of colour, while ones to the back get colours and carbon markings. This
fall I dried bags full of Alaskan seaweed, rehydrated quickly and worked
great! Am also using the aluminum saggars. I save all the bark and chips
from wood chopping and put a 5 gal pail in the bottom of the stove. This
burns really hot and makes a good base.
A few times I put green pots in the fire using Plainsman Raku clay. None
of them broke but I was disappointed in the colour develpment. They did
bisque nicely though. Just started the fire normally.
Pit-firing is lots of fun. After a bit you get to know what is going to
happen, but there is still room for lots of surprises. Like everything you
have to remember what you did to get the result and then you can repeat it.
You just have to try everything and see what happens
Have fun!! Claudia MacPhee, saw 350 swans last trip to Whitehorse, it is
really spring now! Goodbye snow.
One advantage of using stoves is that the bad fumes go up the chiminey
instead of in your face.