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Re: [teacherartexchange] plaster bat hazards and alternative


Date: Mon Jul 31 2006 - 11:46:52 PDT

This might be a elementary v. HS issue. I teach HS and warn them that plaster in
their clay will compromise the pots. In twenty plus years I do not recall any
pots blowing up that we could trace back to plaster. Too thick, or
insufficiently dry? Yes, that has been an issue.

Quoting Marvin Bartel <>:

> If a piece of clay is bisque fired with a chip of plaster in it, the pot
> breaks or a piece pops out because of the expansion of the plaster after
> firing. When we used plaster bats for pots in the classroom I lost too many
> pieces because chips of plaster kept getting mixed into the reprocessed clay.
> As an alternative we place our pieces to dry on cheap unglazed 6 x 6 imported
> floor tile (quarry tile). These are nearly as absorbent as plaster, do not
> warp, and chips are not a problem. They can be soaked and washed easily. I
> set them to dry vertically on a board with a bunch of dowel rods separating
> them during drying.
> Removing the plaster bats saved a lot of pieces.
> Marvin
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