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technical experience with axner

updated thu 19 jun 03


Howard Axner on mon 16 jun 03

Dear Antoinette Badenhorst,

Re: technical experience with Axner

I am making a public apology to you for the unsatisfactory response you
received to your questions at Axner. And I am providing what I hope is
the appropriate response as follows:

Opulence Glazes are high quality commercial glaze blends that work well
with a broad variety of clay bodies. They are made for cone 6 firings.
As with most other glazes, Opulence will appear different from firing
to firing for a broad variety of reasons. Some of the variables are:
1. The color of the clay body upon which they are used.
2. One very important factor is the thickness of the glaze application.
This is controlled by several variables including the amount of water
added to the glaze when first mixing it, the porosity of the bisque
ware which is partially determined by the temperature to which it was
bisqued, and the length of time the pot is submersed into the glaze as
it is being applied. Other factors might apply to the applications
thickness such as suspension agents that may be added to the glaze.
The method of application (i.e. dipping, brushing or spraying) will
also contribute to the thickness of the application.
3. Another factor is the actual cone level that is achieved in the
kiln. While Opulence glazes are formulated for cone 6, they are
sometimes fired to a slightly higher or lower temperature, which will
often change the results.
4. The kiln atmosphere is another factor. While Opulence glazes are
formulated for use in an oxidation atmosphere, some people may use them
in reduction with interesting results. Even in an oxidation atmosphere
of an electric kiln, the atmosphere may vary from kiln to kiln due to
various types of venting that is used.
5. Another factor is glaze interaction. When one glaze overlaps
another, all kinds of interesting results might occur.

Axner includes instructions with every order of Opulence Glaze but
these instructions mainly address how to mix the dry powder with water
properly. Even the most experienced potters need to experiment with a
product, and particularly a glaze that is new to them. Usually, your
response to the tests will be subjective, that is to say that one
potter may like the glaze handled in one way, while another potter will
prefer it done differently. Once the experimentation is complete, you
get to decide what you like best and how to apply that knowledge as
consistently as you choose.

I am providing this information in a public forum since it was
addressed in the same forum, but my next order of business will be to
telephone you in order to address any more specific questions of which
I may be unaware.

Sincerely yours,

Howard Axner

Elizabeth Herod on tue 17 jun 03

I have to step in here and say that I have had a great experience with

I have spoken to their tech people, and ordered a lot of things from them.
I, too, would order more from them if it were not for the shipping costs.

I have also dealt with Roberto regarding my wheel. I have nothing but good
things to say about him. He was a great help to me, and I feel that I can
communicate with him when I have other questions.

Just my 2 cents


Ms Noel on wed 18 jun 03

Let me also add my 2 cents!!
I have to admit I was shocked to see such an open criticism of Axner's on
Clayart. Having dealt with Roberto and the rest of the crew down there, I
could only surmise that there must have been a personality difference
between Roberto and Antoinette. Roberto's enthusiasm for clay is infectious
and I have always found him willing to share technical advice.
Hey, I worked for Axner's local competition in the 70's and I still use
Axner's when ever I make a trip to Florida! (Atlanta has a couple of very
good clay dealers I normally use to avoid shipping.)

And to be fair, Antoinette, congratulations on your accomplishments and your
new venture, "Clay and Canvas".

in rainy Georgia

> I have to step in here and say that I have had a great experience with
> Axner.

> Just my 2 cents
> Beth
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