[Clayart] bisque firing (story)

mel jacobson melpots at visi.com
Mon Jul 22 13:17:25 EDT 2019

the process of bisque firing is not simple, or easy.
it is complex....and ron and others have given us
a good education on how to do it the right way.

there are many considerations for the potter to make
as to bisque firing your own special work. 

when you consider the many clay bodies, glazes, types
of kilns plus years of total bs that has been stuck in the
brains of many clay making folks, it goes without saying
that people can get very confused.

so much when you glaze pots is the condition of the
bisque fired pieces.  for example, i layer glazes and tend
to put a lot of glaze on my pots.  i need for the bisque ware
to be a bit more open, or sponge like.  when ron is doing very
dense porcelain work...he does not want the spongy bisque.

so,it is simple to see two very different attitudes as to what
cone to bisque fire your pots.  when doing cone 12 gas fired
medium reduction i fire my bisque to cone 08.  ron may fire
to cone 04 or higher.  the entire theory is what kind of glaze
are you firing, what is your final cone, and what do you want
the bisque pot to do for you?.

there is no one size fits all. 

i always try to get all the non'clay material to burn out of
my bisque.  i have been experimenting with my new mel6 to
be fired a bit faster...i do however try to hold the firing at
about 1500F for an hour or so.  it seems to work just fine,
but i have no scientific proof....it works, and i don't have
pinholes.  that is good enough for me.

for folks that are a bit newer to clay than me, i suggest you
follow ron's instructions to the T.   as you gain experience
and really know what you want your pots to do, then you
can adjust to your own work...

as i age, i more and more come to the conclusion that
there are thousands of ways to do things with clay.
what works for one, does not work for others.
being dogmatic just gets us in trouble.  but as they
say...`we can a not change the laws of physics scotty`
but, i keep on trying...that is just me.

Mel's Website:  www.melpots.com

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