search  current discussion  categories  kilns & firing - pit firing 

better results in the pit!!

updated sat 4 may 02


Kim Marie on fri 3 may 02

Some lessons learned...When the cracking first began, I think I was taking
them out too soon to peek. Picked up one long neck and it popped right in
my glove. Thermal shock...Lesson, be patient and let the sweeties cool

Form does seem to have some influence on end product success...The large
long necked bottle form is still a touchy one and I've found that I have to
use a more open clay body for that sort of form. I'm using a raku clay that
has finer grog than one I previously tried and it takes a nice shine when
terra sigillata is applied. This clay is a Laguna Eastern Body raku #250. I
use this for all forms using 3 # of clay or more.

I'm also using Laguna Eastern Body 10T for the pit. It's a white body
that throws like silk and takes a gorgeous shine. This body matures at cone
04. So....when I was bisquing the pots to 04 thinking I'd eliminate
cracking by having a tougher pot go to the pit, I think what I did was
vitrify the clay and had a pot far less able to take the thermal shock. I
could probably go up to 3# with this body with good results but find that I
do like using a low fire glaze on the inside so the pots will hold water.
With the small pots I do coat with Future floor acrylic, inside and out..
Yesterday I had 100% success with 6 firings. Feels good!

In Spafford, NY where the pit fires!!

Outgoing mail is certified Virus Free.
Checked by AVG anti-virus system (
Version: 6.0.351 / Virus Database: 197 - Release Date: 4/19/02