Monday, August 29, 2011

More Bisque fresh out of the kiln today

whole bunch of pieces, pendants,  bezels - weird shapes I'll be adding some PMC to and part two of the bracelets - were at the fired stage so now to paint and see how they wear. Cant wait to paint and fire this week
 I'm excited about the bezels so once painted I'll make some samples with pics in
I made some japensese kimono's
Bracelets
Cut outs from bezels
Odd Shapes

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Test Ceramic Pendants out of Kiln

After spending some time yesterday ensuring that the bead holder was supported properly in the kiln (so that the rods would not sag -  I put my first test pieces I had painted back in to fire.  I was so excited - but I knew I had to wait till this morning to see what would come out - I loved the bisque and was pleased with how they fired now it was time to see the if the two tone colouring I had painted worked.  Its all about practice and testing -  Now that I see my bezels and pendants I can go gung ho on making

First images :
I was extremely happy with results of my first test firing on items I made myself by cutting the clay

Ceramic Bezels:

Ceramic Pendants:
Hearts and Stars Pendants:
Ceramic bracelet pieces (connectors):
Ceramic Letters:

Ceramic bracelet pieces - form on arm
and lastly the wine bottle glass holder :

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Ceramics Pieces, resin keys, etched plaster, ceramic bracelets

Pulled some bisque from the kiln tonight and painted - these show just the paint and not the glaze
I have fish and faces in the kiln tonight so I will fire in the morning and see how they turn out
I hope they come out two tone as I painted them but I'll have to wait and see. They are now glazed and ready to be put on the bead rack for firing.
The bracelets have yet to turn out - they keep spreading out. So I will have to keep trying. and come up with something that will hold them together as they dry without leaving marks. ]
Metal mandrel with glass globes holding in place
they still spread out - but if I get something stronger I think they will hold shape next time 

The keys are ok would prefer the small carbon frit to the large sparkly - more realistic

\I saw this cool method of making pendants
using plaster of paris.  you etch your drawing into the plaster - apply black slip let dry then ad your colors and then finish with pouring some slip over top as the backing , then peal off and you have colored pendants without painting .
Blank Plaster
ETCHED PLASTER 
will make up my coloured slips on the weekend and give it a try - if it works then I can make a big plaster bat and create some better etchings 
Beautiful sunset last night 




Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Ringinator set up

Revised:  08/26/11

If you dont know what this is go to ringinator.com   http://www.ringinator.com

I will say for all  the effort I have to do to cut rings this is the best tool on the market

Ease of use and once you work with it a few times it gets easier. Practice, Practice, Practice

I used to go through blades like crazy using the smaller units and cutting by hand is slow

For the price - it probably paid for itself in one year of blades lost at least and not counting my time and frustration levels.

I'll spend the time coiling one day and then run them through the ringinator resulting in thousands of rings in a short time.

I'll embelish this post as I go along rather than adding posts - that way you only have to come to the Ringinator set up post each time .

Start up
Assemble your unit - yup had to figure out where all the bolts go
I have on wood to make it higher off table so I can get collection pans underneath
I have used a velcro strap to lock down the drill 
There is little play in the shaft portion of the blade mount

Insert the blade - this way you can adjust the shaft at the end into the drill easier
mount with bolts
the ends of the bolts are flush with the face of the base so they dont go further you adjust those nuts on the bolts. as you can see the blade sort of to the left but its through the hole

Shaft end - attach and tighten your drill -  ensure drill is locked down

Next plug drill into switch box and  switch box into outlet.
You will see some speed marks but depending on the metal you will "feel" the speed you need
keep your cables clear of your work area
Most inexpensive drills have a reverse and lock button- FIRST MAKE SURE THE SWITCH IS OFF -ITS A DIMMER SWITCH AND REQUIRED YOU TO PUSH DOWN TO TURN ON OR OFF
put unit in reverse and hold trigger and lock the button-  give it a test and run for a few seconds - turn on switch and slowly move dial up -   good turn off

IMPORTANT; BE SURE THE BLADE IS ON TIGHT WITH THE TEETH FACING AWAY FROM YOU - This took me a call to ensure I had this right

OIL SET UP - RUNS INDEPENDENTLY FROM THE DRILL

The plastic tubes are long but you can cut - I am holding off till I figure out till I finish my set up (although its easy enough stuff to find)
I could not figure out why I had three bins so I used one to angle my oil
I ended up putting the whole thing inside a large container so it would contain the drips for now 
so now you have your hose to suck up the oil


push just enough through the hole - and reassemble the cover over the blade - the deep well will fill with oil so that the blade will always have oil while cutting - no oil and your blade will heat up and become dull very fast.
Run a test - plug your pump in - you want to be sure your oil mix is working - I add a bit more water to mine as I found the mix a bit thick - I also had some fatty material settle to top - but after while it went away.
above its filled the blade holder  and is draining into drip pan and into fill tray ( as I said I am going to figure out some sort of way to drain fill tray back into a gallon jug so it just keeps refilling itself (plus a sifter for the grindings so it does not go back into the oil.  See winding long coils in my videos

The big test
I found I loosened the plexy and fitted my coil first - gave an extra turn at bottom for a bit tighter fit
The pump is on , everything plugged in , the trigger locked , the drill locked down, my unit c-clamped to the table.
I turn on the switch and bring it up to speed (again up to you ) too slow and it will bind - WHERE EYE PROTECTION
Yes I have had it bind, yes I have had it do choppy action and spit some rings - pull back the coil -turn off the drill - clean area of rings and debris and do it again.
This set up is still a work in progress
Turn off pump and drill - take your collector bin and pour back into your oil pan
Most of my rings actually collected on the plastic lid - but some were in the collector (where I used to collect them before.  note the grindings - try not to pour too much back into the holding oil tank
lid with oil and rings
Clean up is great - its all water based oil

Now take your unit apart - resivoir- blade cover, blade shaft, bolts from shaft and resivoir, plexy springs, washers, wing nuts etc.. and wash down with soap and water , clean off all areas of the cutter to take off any oil splatters (mostly from my fingers on the drill)  the pump just take and put clean water through it and dry it off  - reassemble so its ready for next time.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Ceramic Bracelets

Thought I would give some ceramic bracelets a try - and see  how they turn out - gotta wait till dry and fire


Carbon in Resin

Used some carbon in my resin today - different sizes  - more Keys and a button- you can see the grits in the resin - they reflect light - cant wait to see what they look like - it's heavy so it goes towards the pattern side and sinks in .


New ceramic Jewellery Pieces

Actually used my slab roller today for first time since I bought it 5 years ago - finally pulled it into an area where I can use it.  Had some fun with clay making bezels for resin, some pendants and pieces - I'll have to wait till they dry and fire  but had fun making them.
The odd looking thing in the upper left corner is a wine glass holder - sits on the wine bottle and holds a wine glass on each side - when done I'll post 


More Ceramic Fish, Horses, Faces

Made some more fish, faces and horses for firing.
Making ceramic jewellery pieces is easy and not as difficult as you may think
I am using molds that I use liquid clay (slip) purchased at Tuckers Pottery - its a low fire slip and comes in a plastic bag that I pour into my left over cat litter containers (they are great for additional usages in the craft studio)  I use a pump I got with the syrup for a snow cone machine we rented for a birthday party in the summer.

I constantly mix the slip between pours - I pump it into my flat molds and then I let them sit.  when nearly dry I turn over the mold and they pop out - to speed up drying I put them on my teflon coated  plug in flat grill - set at 100 F.


They will still need to sit and dry for the week but at least  I can handle without fear of messing them up or sticking together.  I also poured the top of a dip container (bottom is like a jar you put ice in and the top sits on top with the dip and it keeps it cold - great for the summer.


I'll be working on low fire clay pieces next - actual clay that I'll put impressions in - cut - for toggles, connectors etc......

I'll do a step by step on making simple ceramic pieces for jewellery from using slip and malleable clay to firing shortly (using the paragon home hobby kiln)