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single-fired paperclay

updated tue 30 apr 96


Francoise Melville on tue 9 apr 96

(I am sending this again because the Daemon returned it to me)
A few days ago someone wondered whether single-fired paperclay,
fired in an electric kiln, would show signs of local reduction in the glaze.
As far as I can see, the answer is no. Judging by the somewhat awful stink
caused by the burning cellulose fibres, all this seems to have disappeared
before reaching low red heat. I glazed one test bowl with what might have
turned out to be a copper red ^6
and just got a pale-green typical oxidation effect. Two pieces of unglazed
paperclay using ^6 red-brown stoneware, also came out with the typical red
oxidation colour. So.....unless you fire at ^o23 or less (Russel?), there
seems to be no hope of obtaining reduction effects using paperclay in an
oxidation/neutral atmosphere. Nor do I advise single-firing paperclay,
especially if it is very thin as was my sample. The fibre soaks up the
glaze and causes collapse of the pot and if you glaze it when it is still
in the soft leatherhard state, it collapses from the weight of the glaze
applied. I think I'll stick to normal single-fired stoneware.
Sorry, I can't remember who asked the original question, but I hope
to have been of some help, whoever you are.
Rose, thanks for your help with instructions for making the
paperclay in the first place.

Port Edward, B.C.
N.W. Canada