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Tony Hansen's Thousand-Post TimeLine

I am the creator of Digitalfire Insight, the Digitalfire Reference Database and Insight-live.com. ... more

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Program your firings manually, calibrate the final temperature

Program your firings manually, calibrate the final temperature

Here is an example of our lab firing schedule for cone 10 oxidation (which the cone-fire mode does not do correctly). We need it to actually go to cone 10, the only way to do that is verify with a cone (self supporting cones are the only accurate way). Then make a note in the record for that schedule in your account at insight-live.com.

Thursday 30th August 2018

Measuring glaze slurry specific gravity

Measuring glaze slurry specific gravity

This is the easiest way to measure the specific gravity of a glaze if it is not in a container deep enough to float a hydrometer (or if it is too thick to float it properly). Just counterbalance the empty graduated cylinder to zero, fill it to the 100cc mark and the scale reads the specific gravity ... more

Wednesday 29th August 2018

Measure glaze specific gravity with these? Forget it!

Measure glaze specific gravity with these? Forget it!

Glazes need to be gelled, have thixotropy. That means these things won't bob up and down to find the right place. The one on the right is completely useless, the scale is too wide. Most glazes need to be between 1.4 and 1.5 specific gravity (40-50 on this scale). That is like reading seconds on the ... more

Wednesday 29th August 2018

Pour Glazing a Large Terra Cotta Vase

Much better than trying to paint to glaze on from little jars!

Monday 27th August 2018

Video of mug breaking

A highly vitreous, thin walled mug is glazed inside-only. The glaze has a thermal expansion that is too low and it is under compression, pressing outward. A tap with a spoon is enough to trigger a sudden crack. It opens under the pressure. Had it been glazed on the outside also it would likely survive, but this test still indicates that it would be better to raise the expansion a little.

Monday 27th August 2018

Texas talc (left) and Montana talc (right)

Texas talc (left) and Montana talc (right)

Texas talc contains some amorphous carbon. The carbon is not stand-alone, but as CO2 in the dolomitic part of the ore. It produces 7% LOI between 750-850C.

Tuesday 14th August 2018

Stunning black silky matte glaze at cone 6

Stunning black silky matte glaze at cone 6

This contains 6% Mason 6666 gunmetal black stain. The base recipe, G2934, is an excellent balanced-chemistry host for a wide range of stains to produce equally stunning reds, yellows, oranges, etc. The fritted version of the recipe, G2934Y, provides an even better host. This glaze is affected by the ... more

Monday 13th August 2018

Tuning the degree of gloss on a matte black glaze

Tuning the degree of gloss on a matte black glaze

These 10 gram balls were fired and melted down onto a tile. The one the left is the original G2934 Plainsman Cone 6 MgO matte with 6% Mason 6666 black stain. On the right the adjustment has a 20% glossy glaze addition to make it a little less matte. Notice the increased flow (the ball has flattened ... more

Sunday 12th August 2018

DO NOT leave outsides of functional ware unglazed

DO NOT leave outsides of functional ware unglazed

This mug is made from the strongest porcelain I have, it is so vitreous that the bare fired surface does not even coffee-stain. So I glazed it only on the inside. That created a time-bomb waiting for hot coffee! Three others did exactly the same. Four other mugs glazed on the outside were fine. Why? ... more

Monday 6th August 2018

One gram of processed hectorite has a surface area of 750 square meters!

One gram of processed hectorite has a surface area of 750 square meters!

A combination of surface area, surface topography, surface chemistry and surface electrolytics determines how plastic a clay is. This material is super plastic.

Monday 6th August 2018

Contact Us:

Use the contact pages within or outside your account at Insight-Live.com


Test, Document, Learn, Repeat in your account at insight-live.com

Login to your online account

Chemistry plus physics. The on-line successor to desktop Insight. Get an account for as little as $15. It does so much more.

Conquer the Glaze Dragon With Digitalfire Reference info and software

Still available for Mac, PC, Linux

Interactive glaze chemistry calculations (legacy, no longer supported)


What people have said about digitalfire

• Just wanted to tell you I just found your site and find it extremely useful. Got it bookmarked and will be referring to it frequently. Great job! Thank you!

• Your site is excellent and informative, you should conduct online conferences on various subjects, please let me know if you have one.

• Your attention to the people has been allways great, as its your software, thanks for the support.

• I find the educational section of your website informative and it is very generous of you to share your expertise with the the rest of us. Thank you so much for your kind assistance.

• Thanks for your website! I found it greatly informative and useful in my research work on high temperature ceramic materials.

• Ceramicmaterials.info is a fantastic resource!

• I am impressed with your site - it is very comprehensive.


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What people have said about Insight-Live

• My glazes activities are seasonal anyway. In the summer i make pots in winter I think about chemistry and sit at a PC. I looked at your pricing again and it is indeed reasonable.

• I should mention beforehand that you, as well as Insight, have become the “go to” reference for all technical aspects of my work and those of other potters I know. It has become an invaluable resource. Congratulations on your academic approach to everything ceramic.

• Looking at your website, I have no doubts that there is no other person that would be so dedicated to the subject as you. It is a fact that you have a truly unique knowledge of how things are done, the materials and chemistry being used in such processes. Frankly, I do not complement people and their work easily but you are one of a kind person with some divine dedication to the technology. There are very few people like you and that is a fact. I just spoke with several so-called ceramics, frits and glazes experts and I have to say that they had somewhat limited knowledge while you cover incredibly wide spectrum of all affairs involved in to working with all those great materials.

• I'm accepting the challenge. First: find/develop a good base recipe. One for clear and one for celadon. Then add the colors. And play with "surface." Experiment. Keep impeccable notes. Change one variable at a time. Yada, yada.

• The knowledge and information you share on digital fire is a rare gem on the internet. I greatly appreciate your writing style. To the point and full of facts. I am wanting to be more active in my glaze creation and begin to make my own glazes. This, to me seems like a huge step away from the safe and what I know of the glazes I have been working with.

• How amazing it is to have personal contact on such an amazing technical site and I can’t express my gratitude for your generous spirit.

• Thank you again for the amazing website and wealth of information!!! InsightLive is proving to be an incredible asset as well!!!


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