As part of the extensive loin-girding before the firing spree,I decided that it was high time to scrape down and resurface my kiln shelves. The apprentice,whose job this should rightfully be,was either not present or otherwise occupied [cleaning studio windows! Glory be!],so I did it myself;it didn't take too long,and was most satisfying. I used a grinding stone on the shelf surface under running water,took off the many lumpy layers of batwash,attacked glaze spills with the angle-grinder [wearing safety specs],and applied a couple of coats of thin,new batwash [alumina 70,china clay 40 is my current blend] to the still-damp shelves. I paint one corner of each shelf with iron oxide,and revolve shelves 180 degrees each firing,in an attempt to even out warping-as you can see from the second picture,the shelves are still reasonably straight after 4-5 years. The post-ultimate bisc is as full as it's going to be,apart from a few final pieces Yahel is supposed to throw tomorrow morning,ready for a Friday firing,and the first,tentative crystal kiln is loaded and ready to go.
By the way- after the last post,I went through all previous posts and labelled anything remotely useful or informative in a ceramic sense as "tips",so you can see them all in one fell swoop.There's even a video of me throwing a bowl in there somewhere.
Having just checked,I see that clicking 'tips' doesn't get you the whole bunch;the video,should you be interested,is from July 2006-click on the appropriate archive on the left.