Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Catastrophic Failure

Just a quick post to show you what I found in the kiln this past Sunday.

I ran a bisque load last week and, after a long Thanksgiving weekend, unloaded right away Sunday morning.  This is what I found on the bottom shelf.  What that used to be was a 16 inch platter that I spent quite a while decorating.  Disappointing.  Not entirely sure what caused this platter to explode.  I have a few more to decorate still, so we will see what happens with those.

I am getting ready for a big-ish craft fair this weekend at SIU.  If anyone is in the area come check it out.  There is usually some pretty good stuff there.  Next week: how to butcher your own meat.


  1. So sorry about your mishap. Did you have cones in the bottom of your kiln to see if it is firing too hot, or hotter, on the lower shelves? Have you used sand under flat pieces to facilitate movement while shrinking during the firing process, both bisque and glaze loads? Both of these have helped me in firings.

  2. Our rule here is no platters or plates on the bottom...ever. The bottom doesn't heat up with the rest of the kiln early on(heat rises) which can cause problems with shock when it catches up. It also cools faster, anything with wide flat bases crack in the bottom of our electric have a tendency to crack. I always fill the bottom shelf with cups. They're small, relatively thin and can take whatever you can throw at them.

  3. FUCH! man, I know that exploding feeling....gotta bisque going now with some, well, questionable pieces, hope I don't see that too :) best wishes on the fair amigo, make some moola!

  4. Thanks for the tips and such. I will have to try firing the next ones on the top shelf. I think I have fired plates in the top of the kiln before, but never thought that putting them elsewhere would make much difference.

    And I really should use witness cones. I always used to, but when I got a kiln with programmable firing that kind of fell by the way side.

    Thanks again all.