Ken Horstman Studios

Update to Reconstituting Clay

In my most recent batch of pots I’ve had some problems with “Scumming”,  water soluble salts coming to the surface  sometimes in drying and other times when gazed firing.  It will leave a bumpy rough surface which is not very attractive.  One of the mysteries is that it seems to happen , not to all pieces but to a series of pieces.  

In doing some research I came across this article by Jeff Zamek     one suggestion was a clay body with a lot of bentonite may have this issue ( I use a porcelain body) Another possible cause the article suggested was too much deflocculant such as Darvan 7 could add a soluble salt to the clay.  I’ve always added a teaspoon of Darvan 7 to my water and then added my dried clay scraps and mixed it up.  Never really noticed a problem.  But recently what I have done is when my throwing water is getting thick I add a teaspoon of Darvan 7 and then addition scraps of clay.  Use an immersion blender and making almost a casting slip pour it in my drying slab and recycle it. I feel that may cause of too much soluble salts in a small batch of recycle clay.  The article also recommended adding up to 2% Barium Carbonate to possibly reduce the effects of the soluble salts.

I will just add my throwing water slop to another bucket and add water and barium carbonate  to this mixture when I recycle a bigger batch of clay.  I will follow up in a future   See you in the next post

link below to drying slab  

An Organizing Idea

Here’s another way to organize your studio/business the we may not often give enough thought too, and that’s creating a database for websites you visit and want to remember.  I like to divide them into categories that I find useful.  Such as ceramic supplies sites, artists sites, galleries, ceramic tools and manufacturers, you can get creative as you want. Remember to create them as links so clicking on them will take to right to the site. (I test my links to ensure they work)  

After you have lived with your system for a while check to see if the categories still work and add another group for frequently used sites.  

Also if you like what you see and are still looking for a website host, I recommend   I am an affiliate with Format I would appreciate you using the link below to explore Format and what they have to offer. 

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Happy New Year

Happy New Year
As a very different type of year comes to a close, Ken Horstman Studios would like to extend our deepest gratitude to all  who supported us throughout the year.  We wish you all the best and make it a better year in 2021.  If you haven’t all ready follow us by joining the mailing list by using the link on the contact page or just come to the web site to see updates.

See you in the next blog.

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