Alternative to Thinfire

This is the main board for discussing general techniques, tools, and processes for fusing, slumping, and related kiln-forming activities.

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Buttercup
Posts: 618
Joined: Mon Jan 28, 2008 5:22 pm
Location: S.E. Queensland Australia

Re: Alternative to Thinfire

Post by Buttercup »

By the way, so there's no confusion, I use the alumina hydrate as is, in dry powder form. Put a 1/4" (+/-) layer on the kiln shelf and flatten it with a folded newspaper. ( What's that, you ask, no don't use the Guardian site on your laptop.) I use a piece of float glass, sometimes a rolling pin.

Needless to say don't fire frit on powder. Turn it into a kiln wash for that.
theanimallover
Posts: 58
Joined: Tue Jan 22, 2008 9:19 am
Location: The Sticks, England, UK

Re: Alternative to Thinfire

Post by theanimallover »

Thank-you Buttercup. I actually have stacks of newspapers as I've got critters! What are the advantages of firing on powder rather than in a wash?

I don't have a new kiln yet. I'm waiting until I'm sure that I can safely put one in our living space. I will definitely ditch the thin fire, but it was very easy to use and didn't stick to the opal glass which is why I used it.

I'm still looking into Advancer kiln shelves, very expensive, and... there is more of a risk of electric shock!
Buttercup
Posts: 618
Joined: Mon Jan 28, 2008 5:22 pm
Location: S.E. Queensland Australia

Re: Alternative to Thinfire

Post by Buttercup »

@theanimallover, I use the 'powder' because it's easy, lasts multiple firings and I've not had it stick to the glass. That said, I mainly paint and fire. If it did happen to stick, I can't imagine under what scenario, it should brush or wash off (not into the house drains). I will definitely report here if there are any unexpected experiences that have a result that's contrary to what I've described here.

I originally started using it because a 50 lb. + bucket of it came with a used kiln and I'd read several references to its reliability in this forum. I had previously used plaster of Paris, also dry, as taught by Albin Elskus.

If you want to try it get the smallest amount you can buy. It certainly beats applying kiln wash and reapplying kiln wash and scraping it off to reapply it. It's also nice using silver stain as you can just toss it out and not have to re-kiln wash the shelf, just use a fresh layer. I keep a separate shelf for SS.

Fusers may have different experiences. Bert Weiss has contributed lots of posts with references to how he uses it.

Good luck! Lets us know how it goes if you do try it.
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