My second kiln load

I’m still learning how to use my old Cress Electric Kiln FE-2-A. It is so exciting to learn about clay and ceramics and pottery. It has always been my dream to be a full time artist. Join me on my journey!

Kiln Diary Notes:

9/12/20 My 2nd Bisque Fire. My goal was to get to Cone 04 in 12hrs. But the kiln fired much hotter than I expected and it was done in 7.5hrs! The clay I have been using is Laguna Dave’s Porcelain, a mystery white sculpture clay and a mystery dark brow clay with high grog content. I got both of these from my aunt and are unmarked, so I don’t really know what they are.

Cress Kiln settings: Firemate: 1 (slow), Timer: 12hrs, Temperature dial: 1915 F, Thumbwheel: 1. I kept lid cracked open and left both peep holes open for the first 3hrs then I closed the lid. I closed the bottom peep after 5hrs.

By 4.5hrs the Thumbwheel was at 9 and the kiln was red hot inside. By 6.5hrs Cone 05 started to bend. I didn’t check soon enough after that because 1hr later all three cones were completely bent! 05, 04 and 03. So I turned everything off.

Some of the glazed projects had pinholes. I will reglaze them and fire them again.

9/17/20 My 2nd Glaze Fire. My goal was to get to Cone 05 in 9hrs. I used all Mayco glazes: Stroke & Coat, Fundamentals, Foundations and Clear One dipping.

Cress Kiln settings: Firemate: 1 (slow), Timer: 9hrs, Temperature dial: 1870 F, Thumbwheel: 0. I closed the lid and bottom peep to start.

By 6hrs Cone 07 melted (I didn’t have a Cone 06!!). By 7hrs Cone 05 started to melt. I tried doing a “hold/soak” by turning the Firemate to Stop/Manual. This did not appear to work because in 8 minutes Cone 04 started to melt. So I turned it off. So total fire time to get Cone 05 was 7hrs 15min.

I opened the kiln 24hrs later. I found that some of the glaze “crazed”. The pinholes that were on the prior fire had all been corrected. Thankfully on all the drink ware none of the glaze crazed. Please watch my video to see how everything turned out!

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