Epsom Salts.

June 19, 2011 at 6:15 am (Studio and Environment) (, , , , , , , , )

Also known as Magnesium Sulfate. Amazing stuff, really, and ever so useful. Just a little amount goes a long way to keep a glaze from clotting at the bottom of a barrel.

Turns out the new scrap glaze is one of the types that will settle and congeal together so tightly that it starts to dry out underwater. Like cornstarch does, if you need a comparison. Imagine trying to stir up a 20 gallon bucket half full of cornstarch and the other half water.

It settles more quickly too. Almost immediately after stirring it forms a cake-like layer of dense glaze material on top of the cornstarch layer.

Epsom Salts does something to it, though. It is hydroscopic–water loving and it flocculates the glaze materials. It keeps them in suspension longer and changes the electrical charge so the materials aren’t so readily attracted to each-other. No more drying out underwater! Yeay!

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1 Comment

  1. Kiln day! « Frost Indri’s Studio Notes said,

    […] a dry brick underwater so I was only able to get some of the material into the glaze. As I’ve mentioned before Epsom salts can deflocculate a glaze, but fist you have to get the glaze stirred up. Its going to […]

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