Firing Crystalline Glazes
Firing Crystalline Glazes in a Bailey Gas Kiln
Using a Bailey Gas Kiln with one of our control systems allows you to create beautiful effects when firing crystalline glazes. You can experiment with firing crystalline glazes in reduction or oxidation on the way up to temperature, and with a controlled cool with soak on the down fire.
Steve Sitrin loves throwing porcelain vessels and applies heavy slip when the forms are wet. The slip decoration that he creates is incorporated into his forms to catch the flow and pooling of his micro crystal glazes. His unique style of firing micro crystalline glazes achieves striking and dramatic effects.
He fires his Bailey Shuttle Deluxe 38/24 in a slight reduction on the way up, and then uses a Bailey Programmable Controller to precisely control the cooling and soak cycles on the way down. His firings are very efficient and the results constantly reliable.
Crystalline Glazes at the Higher Fire Studios
Dan Dermer, owner of Higher Fire Studios in San Jose California, fires a special oxidation load once a month to Cone 10 in his Bailey PRO 40 AutoFire gas kiln. His students and resident potters get to experiment with crystalline glazes, as well as oilspot, and other glazes that respond best in oxidation firing.
The crystalline pieces shown below are from a recipe from Fara Shimbo. Dan uses the same recipe base, and adds variations and combinations of copper carbonate and cobalt.
Because crystalline glazes are runny, his students use a standard glaze on the underside of the the bowl and platters, with the crystalline glaze only on the inside.
After reaching cone 10, the kiln starts the cooling cycle until 2090 F, where the program holds the temperature for 1 hour. After that, the load cools naturally.
The results are wonderful!