Here is a picture of some trivets that I pressmolded out of some wadding. I use them to place cups and small bowls. They really help when loading the kiln. A rather long process that I didn't look forward to, now rockets right along.
The formula for the wadding is:
Fireclay 50% Silica sand 35%
Alumina Hydrate 15%
I use coarse fireclay, Hawthorn Bond if I have it.
We decided to reduction cool the spring firing. I have done this before and have gotten nice clay body color and also very nice ash color. The kiln was first all shut down and silled up with one side stoke left to stoke into. Lee took the first shift and stoked a few pieces of wood into the kiln every ten to fifteen minutes to keep the atmosphere smoky and reducing. I took the second shift and continued until the temperature was at about 1600F. This took about six hours. Now we wait and see how the pots look... sometimes the hardest part!
Here are some pictures of the pots for the spring firing as they are loaded into the kiln. I am still inside the kiln wadding the last pots in the firebox while Leona is bricking up the door. This is an odd feeling to say the least.
Here are some squared plates and bottles ready to go into the kiln. The bottles are put on top of the plates with shells in between. The plates have a shino glaze on them that works well with the shells. I'm trying a saturated iron glaze that has worked well in woodfiring. Well it's time to go back into the kiln.