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Preventing Uneven Bowl Slumping


This is part four of a multi-part tip on preventing uneven bowl slumping. Click here to go to part one.


Sometimes, despite all your efforts, you peek in the kiln and the bowl has slumped unevenly.  There's a way to do something about this, but it's not for the meek.


You'll need a pair of gloves that can withstand slumping temperatures, a good pair of safety glasses to protect your eyes from infrared radiation, and the courage to reach inside a hot kiln.


If your kiln door has a kill switch (the switch automatically cuts power to the elements when the door opens), you can reach into the kiln without fear of touching the elements and getting shocked (or worse).  If your kiln doesn't have a kill switch (or if you're not sure), then the safest thing to do is to cut off the kiln.


Then, with the gloves on, and wearing the safety glasses, reach into the kiln and pick up the loaded mold.  Now shake it around to center the blank.  This will work easily with a ball-shaped mold like a wok, but it can also work with more complicated shapes.  Remember to move quickly, then place the mold back in the kiln and continue firing.


Sometimes it not necessary to totally remove the loaded mold, and you can gently nudge the glass into place.  But whatever method you use, be sure to move quickly and with all the appropriate safety equipment.


Click here for the final section of this tip -- what to do if all else fails and you end up with a piece that slumps crooked.


Copyright 2006 Brad Walker.  All rights reserved.

Thanks to Brock Craig for this tip, sometimes known as the "Craig shuffle."

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Four Corners International, Inc.

4140 Clemmons Road, #320

Clemmons, NC  27012   USA

Copyright 2005-2006 by M. Bradley Walker.  All rights reserved.

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