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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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Kiln Firing Curve Recorder - Coming Soon

Kiln Firing Curve Recorder - Coming Soon

This is a Raspberry Pi computer with camera. It costs about $100 (with the Lego case and gooseneck mount). It has Wifi, Bluetooth and HDMI. The software we have written turns it into a web server with the ability to read the temperature on the controller of an electric kiln (doing so once per minute ... more

Friday 16th November 2018

Using commercial glazes? You still need to know about specific gravity.

Using commercial glazes? You still need to know about specific gravity.

The glaze in this jar was 'goop', impossible to paint on. I did not know whether I needed to add water or try to deflocculate it (although the former is more likely and in keeping with what Laguna says on its website). I measured the specific gravity, it was 1.7, so clearly it needed water. It took ... more

Friday 16th November 2018

A must-have: Laboratory variable speed propeller mixer

A must-have: Laboratory variable speed propeller mixer

If you are at all serious about testing glazes and clay bodies, you need one of these. There are other methods, but nothing else comes close to this. It is the most valuable and frequently used tool in any ceramic bodies and glazes testing lab. These are expensive new, this Lightnin 1/20 hp variable ... more

Saturday 3rd November 2018

What is that glossy square around the decal?

What is that glossy square around the decal?

An example of a digital decal that has been fired at 1500F onto a matte cone 6 glaze. Notice the glossy, square around the graphic. This is where the decal paper was cut prior to transfer. This glossy layer appears by design, the decal paper has a thin layer of glaze and your inkjet design is ... more

Tuesday 30th October 2018

6% rutile is too much in this cone 6 oxidation glaze

6% rutile is too much in this cone 6 oxidation glaze

Rutile variegates glaze surfaces. But it also opacifies at higher percentages. The blue effect is a product of crystallization that occurs during cooling, it is thus dependent on a slower cooling cycle, especially above 1400F. This is GA6-C Alberta Slip glaze with 4, 5 and 6% rutile. At 6% the ... more

Monday 29th October 2018

Comparing the melt fluidity of two shipments of Custer Feldspar

Comparing the melt fluidity of two shipments of Custer Feldspar

A GLFL test for melt-flow to compare Custer Feldspar from Feb/2012 (right) with Mar/2011 (fired at cone 6). Custer Feldspar does not melt like this by itself at cone 10. It was mixed 80:20 Feldspar:Ferro Frit 3134. This test demonstrates that the material has been very consistent between these two shipments.

Monday 22nd October 2018

If the functional ware you make crazes you absolutely must fix it

If the functional ware you make crazes you absolutely must fix it

These are commercial bottled glazes, a transparent and a decorative. On a porcelain at cone 6. They are not compatible with the body (its thermal expansion is too low or they are too high). This not only creates a germ zoo but severely weakens the piece. I tapped this lightly with a spoon about 1-2 ... more

Wednesday 17th October 2018

Two reasons why porcelain recipes need silica

Two reasons why porcelain recipes need silica

This is 70% kaolin and 30% feldspar. The fired body looks very porcelaneous but right out of the kiln the crazing is like this. The thermal expansion of the kaolin:feldspar mix is too low, no ordinary glaze will fit it. The other issue is with the flat particle shape of kaolin. The throwing process ... more

Wednesday 10th October 2018

Another reason that Insight-live.com exists

Another reason that Insight-live.com exists

First, I need to record this as a recipe in my account at insight-live.com so it can be printed at any total, documented with pictures of it on different clays, firing schedules and how they affect it, general notes. And be accessible from anywhere with any device. Then I need to start working on ... more

Friday 21st September 2018

Two G2571A Bamboo color versions at cone 10R

Two G2571A Bamboo color versions at cone 10R

These mugs are Plainsman H450. Both have a black engobe (L3954J) applied to the insides and half way down the outside during leather hard stage (the insides are glazed with Ravenscrag silky matte and G1947U over the black engobe). The bamboo glazes can thus be seen over the black (upper half) and ... more

Friday 21st September 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

• I have not been pottery long and I have decided to try to make my own glazes. Your web site is great. I like your cone 6 base glaze.

• I must say that your article on geting pink colors from Chrome and Tin had an appealing writing style and was very informative.

• I have been in this ceramic line with 15 years experience covering the idustires right from porcelain insulators,vitrified tiles etc., With the help of chemistry graduation I started my career in the cermaic industry. This website is very much helpful in fine tuning and upgrading my experience with enhanced knowledge of ceramics.

• Thanks - your help has always been prompt and useful.

• Also, as a side note, this website is an excellent resource and I appreciate the fact that all this info is available on the web! Not only that, but I have found the information to be accurate, dependable and thorough, which is difficult to find anywhere.

• I have read just about all your articles on Digitalfire and use your software, really appreciate the wealth of knowledge and testing you bring to ceramics.

• omg i just discovered your page this is like breaking bad for ceramics, learning how to cook. this is a great page thanks !


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What people have said about Insight-Live

• I have used the digital fire database for years and am beyond grateful for your work.

• I spent most of yesterday playing with the “new” (to me) version of insight on line. I love it, it is faster and eventually easier to use. And by the way, thank you for creating and maintaining the enormous data base of ceramic materials and making it available for anyone to use. What a wonderful gift to all of us interested in ceramics.

• Anyway I thank you for your efforts in putting together this wealth of ceramic science in this accessible manner.

• I keep telling people that I just found the best ceramic website on the internet. Paid for an account on insight live.

• I teach glaze technology at ... the information that you display on your this website is absolutely fundamental for my teaching.

• I wanted you to know that, you have a fantastic program. Every serious potter should use it. And it would be a good starting curriculum for high school and college to learn from. Thanks for, I would imagine, many hours in developing time. Kudos sir. I hope, by God's good will that I will be able to enjoy it for any years to come.

• Awesome site...you do great work!


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