Sunday, April 27

Fixing a crack I hope

Here is an idea about how to fix a small crack in a bisque-fired pot. I usually don't fix a cracked pot, they get tossed into the trash or junk pot pile. I don't recommend it unless there is a very good reason to do so. My general idea is that if you have a bad pot, then you need to let go of it. It is said by experienced potters that you waste more time trying to fix a pot then by just making a new one and I believe this to be true. I also simply believe that it is good to emotionally be able to let go of something that didn't work instead of clinging to it like it is more important than it really is. HOWEVER, there is occasionally a good reason to try to fix something and this is one of those times. My lid for my large teapot I threw recently (see previous post of four pound teapot) developed a tiny hairline crack underneath. I really would like to have this pot for my jury if it comes out well and the crack is very, very tiny so I feel it is worth the try, given the amount of time invested in making the teapot. A note here though. I WOULD NEVER, NEVER try to fix something like a broken handle or other weight-bearing part and I don't recommend it and believe it is a little unethical to do so. So . . . after all that here is what I am trying.

Since the piece has already been bisque fired to fill the crack with just clay would probably result in the fix shrinking too much on drying and the crack remaining visible. So what I did was sand the area with fine paper which gave me some super-fine bisque dust. To this dust I added a little bit of my clay body which has vinegar in it. (Vinegar does something to open the pores or something of clay allowing you to fix or attach things when the clay is to dry to be able to do so. It actually works really well. I havn't tried this with bisque yet so we'll see). So now I have a paste made with bisque dust, clay and vinegar. After wiping the cracked area and brushing pure vinegar onto it I then forced the paste into the tiny crack and smoothed. I will do this one more time before glazing. I will post later with the results.

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