[Clayart] Bisque Shards in Glaze

Vince Pitelka vpitelka at dtccom.net
Wed Oct 10 14:34:11 EDT 2018

It's certainly a good idea to screen your glazes periodically to eliminate bisque shards that come out of the interior of pots during glazing, as several people have mentioned.  I discovered a trick for removing bisque-shards from pots that has worked very well.  Those little shards are often slightly stuck in place and will not come out with shaking or a blast of compressed air, but then come loose when hit by glaze.  I encouraged my students to examine the inside of each pot carefully for bisque shards (trimmings and other little bits left in the bottom).  If there are any shards and bits that do not come loose from shaking, we grab a small handful of gravel from the service road behind the studio, drop it in the pot, gently shake it back and forth, and dump it out.  That will knock loose any shards that would have come loose during glazing.  If you don't have a convenient gravel road out back, find some pea gravel and keep a small supply in the studio.  It can be used again and again.  This can leave some dust behind, so it's a good idea to rinse the inside and let it dry, or give it a quick blast with compressed air.  
- Vince

Vince Pitelka
Retired Faculty, Appalachian Center for Craft
School of Art, Craft & Design, Tennessee Tech University
Now residing Chapel Hill, NC 27516
vpitelka at dtccom.net

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