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pit firing with salt washes (question)

updated sat 25 aug 01


Dannon Rhudy on thu 23 aug 01

....>i have a question for any.....uses salt saturated washes:
>have any of you ever had any problems with the salt
>.......... leaching out later on?

When you brush or soak a pot with a salt saturated
solution, and then pitfire, the pot will still contain salt
AFTER the firing. The pot will absorb moisture from
the atmosphere, and salt and moisture will migrate
to the outside of the pot (and inside, too, but you're
less likely to notice it there.) If you have waxed the
pot, the wax will be pushed off ahead of the migrating
salts & moisture - tends to look a bit furry. Most unattractive.
You would have much less problem with this if you
did not use a saturated salt solution for soaking/brushing
your pots. Instead, put a LITTLE salt around the pot
before firing. Most of the fumes will not penetrate
the pot, but leave flashing on the burnished surface.
You can still get quite good color, and you should have
no further problems with migrating salts.


Dannon Rhudy

mudslingers@ATT.NET on thu 23 aug 01

hi pit fire lovers,

i have a question for anyone who has tried this
method and uses salt saturated washes:
have any of you ever had any problems with the salt
(from a wash that was sprayed on, or the pot dunked
into) leaching out later on?

i had gotten this copper carb wash recipe from:
(great pit fire info if you've never been there!)

Copper Wash

3 gallons of saturated saltwater solution - Water with
the maximum amount of salt dissolved into the solution.
2 cups of copper carbonate

after using it, bringing the pots home (about 80 of
them!), washing them, letting them dry well and using a
floor wax on them, the salt started to leach through
after a week in my humid basement! i had to use a floor
wax stripper to remove the wax, soak them for awhile,
let them dry again and then started using polyurethane
(3 coats. which i actually like better! more work but
it looks really good -- almost a 3-D effect!)

i'd like to use the washes with salt method again, but
am VERY hesitant. it seems that many use salt (and salt
washes) for nice coloring. i know that just sprinkling
the stuff is an option, but i'm still curious about
the washes.

you can see some of my pit fire process and pots at: