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RAKU FIRING

How to create a piece of ceramics and fire it using the unique techniques of Raku.
by

Allie Rumler

on 20 April 2010

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Transcript of RAKU FIRING

RAKU FIRING getting started


specific rules process finished product Raku pottery is created by using an ancient firing technique which uses the combination of fire and smoke to create unique patterns and designs on ceramic pieces. In order for this unique firing process to work you must follow a few minor rules when building your ceramics piece.
Size- your ceramics piece must be small enough to fit inside the kiln
Glaze- you must use specific Raku glazes. Which are unlike the typical ceramics glazes. Use clay to create any sort of ceramic piece that you wish. Typically the best effects show up on pots or vases. Then let the clay dry out to the "bone dry" stage. (This will mean the clay is completely dry and ready to go into the kiln.) NOTE:
the Raku firing technique does not produce pieces that are safe to drink or eat from due to chemicals in the glazes. So these pieces are purely for decorative use. You can tell if a piece is bone dry by touching the piece to see if it is cold. If the piece is cold then that means the clay is still wet and needs to be dried out longer. After your piece is dry you may glaze it with any type of Raku glaze
Then you put it into a kiln until temperatures reach around 1,700 degrees.
Once the kiln has reached temperature turn off the kiln and open the front revealing the pieces that are a glowing hot orange!
Safety In order to extract your pieces from the kiln you must be protected.
Saftey Gloves
Long Sleeve Shirt
Closed Toe Shoes
Long Tongs Then grab the pieces from the kiln and throw them into a tin or metal trash can that is filled with newspaper/magazine papers.
Once the newspaper starts to flame, cap the can and let sit for about 15 minutes or until the can stops smoking.
Then again use the tongs to grab the piece from the barrel and slowly lower it into a bucket filled with water. Once you can not hear the sizzling of the piece going into the water anymore, take your ceramic piece and place it somewhere safe on the groud away from anything flamable.
Then spray it down with a hose before you touch it. Now you are finished! Your end result is guarenteed to be unique and the experience that you get with Raku firing is irreplaceable!
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