|Monthly Tech-Tip |
This cone 10R glaze, a tenmoku with about 12% iron oxide, demonstrates how iron turns to a flux in reduction firing and produces a glaze melt that is much more fluid. In oxidation, iron is refractory and does not melt well (this glaze would be completely stable on the ware in an oxidation firing at the same temperature, and much lighter in color).
Ravenscrag Slip, by itself, produces a silky transparent glaze at cone 10R. It is an excellent base to which to add colorants and modifiers. This is a simple addition of 10% iron oxide (Ravenscrag Slip already contains 2% iron, making about 12% total Fe2O3). This GR10-L recipe produces a stunning crystalline fired surface on these two porcelains. This "beyond-tenmoku" effect happens because of the extra iron and a slow cooling rate. The 12% iron dissolves in the glaze melt during heatup in the firing, but during cooling, the extra 2% precipitates out to produce these surfaces. The iron also acts as a flux in reduction firing, greatly increasing melt fluidity. Take that last statement seriously: The iron is a flux and the glaze will melt much more (it can wreck your kiln shelves if it runs). That being said, Ravenscrag Slip is more melt stable than other bases, making it a more stable host for the iron addition.
Iron Oxide Red
Red iron oxide is the most common colorant used in ceramic bodies and glazes. As a powder, it is available in red, yellow, black and other colors.
|Oxides||FeO - Ferrous Oxide|
Ceramic glazes melt and flow according to their chemistry, particle size and mineralogy. Observing and measuring the nature and amount of flow is important in understanding them.
A method of firing stoneware where the kiln air intakes and burners are set to restrict or eliminate oxygen in the kiln such that metallic oxides convert to their reduced metallic state.
Tenmoku is a kind of high temperature reduction firing ceramic glaze. Glossy, very dark brown or maroon, fluxed by iron oxide to have high melt fluidity.