I was back working in the studio today...at long last. All the tidying is finished, shelves are up, kiln working and floor mopped umpteen times.
I wasn't out for long, but I managed to complete a batch of terra sigillata and used it to do a test on a small pot I had laying around. You can find a video showing the process on my YouTube page.
Terra sigillata is a thin slip suspension which is used to give the surface of the pot a shine without glazing. The theory is that the particles in the slip are so fine that they seal the clay body. I used about five parts water to one part clay (just slops I had in a tub, I wasn't particularly scientific! Around five litres in total) and mixed in three or so teaspoons of calgon (until the mix felt slippery). Then I mixed the whole lot, like mad, with a plasterers mixer attached to my drill and left it to settle for a couple of days. The mix divides into three layers: A top watery layer, the middle layer which is the terra sig. and a bottom layer of large heavy particles. I just took a tube and siphoned off the middle layer. It seems to work well and is definitely something I will be using this year. I think it should work well on bowls and similar open shapes and is another notch on my list of single firing techniques.
I also have been working again on my extruder idea. Hopefully I'll be able to post a video soon (If everything goes according to plan). It all seems to be going well, but I have some important parts to make tomorrow from clay. I will keep you updated. Sorry to be so cryptic but I don't want to spoil the surprise.
I'm going to be doing some exciting glaze experiments over this next week so am throwing test pieces tomorrow. I've had one of my crazy ideas and will find out if it's viable or stupid only by testing and finding out....keep an eye out for updates!
Thanks for visiting.