Friday, April 13, 2012

Fuming in Electric Kiln Creates 'Directional Pots'

Most of my focus this past year has been on wood firing, but I continue to fire pots in my electric kiln. Pots in the wood kiln tend to have two sides to them. The side toward the flame and the side away from the flame - directional pots sort of. Ash tends to fall on the side toward the flame, and this ash will melt and form its own glaze, or it will melt into an existing glaze on the pot and change its look.

I unloaded my electric kiln yesterday and had a couple of pots that had this "directional" look. Kind of cool. What happens sometimes in an electric kiln is some glazes will fume a lot and the fuming will affect pots located right next to them. I've seen this a lot with a turquoise glaze I use.

But the pots that were affected yesterday were ones set beside a glaze that I mistakenly put manganese instead of cobalt. Apparently, manganese has a tendency to fume, at least in this particular glaze (50 percent gerstley borate/50 percent plastic vitrox clay).

Here's the two pots:

This is the side away from the fuming

And this is the side toward the fuming

Here's the placement in the kiln

Here's a wood-fired pot, flame side
And back side (away from flame)

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