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rutile blue here

updated sun 27 oct 02


Chris Jones on sat 26 oct 02

I use Rutile Blue as my staple glaze. I learned how to make it work from the
potter I apprenticed under. I fire in a 18 cu.foot downdraft, fiber kiln to
^10-11 starting heavy reduction around/at ^06. Use a clay body containing
iron ( I use Highwater's Trins Buff). I finish the firing in around 8 hours
in my small kiln with no soak. I let it cool normally which tends to drop in
temp fast at first. I can open the kiln in about 12 hrs. I KNOW heavy
reduction is crucial!!! if too little I get a lavender to colorless look.
Real heavy and it goes very dark blue. You must apply the glaze very heavy,
I dip glaze for about 6 seconds. Try that. For pictures, go to

----- Original Message -----
From: "Rick Hugel"
Sent: Friday, October 25, 2002 7:53 PM
Subject: Re: rutile blue glazes

> Don't know it this will help, but here is my experience with the glaze. It
> is a bit of a frustrating glaze. I found out very quickly that using it
> a fine particle clay with very little to no iron in it just doesn't work.
> The results will always be white UNLESS the pot has finger grooves or is
> altered in a way that allows the glaze to pool in valleys and crevices
> where it will turn blue. And even this is chancy. So I just don't use
> glaze on anything but sandy heavy iron bearing clay and these pots are
> usually vases which have been altered in some way. The results always
> off the glaze at its best. As for firing, I don't do anything special.
> Pots with this glaze are mixed in with everything else and fired in my
> usual reduction method: 13 hours, 1280 degrees centigrade oscillating
> between reduction, neutral,heavy reduction,neutral beginning from 900
> degrees centigrade. Between 700 degrees to 800 I stretch out the firing
> time to 3 hours with about half the time spent at the 800 mark. This is
> done between neutral and very light reduction, sometimes slipping to
> oxidization. I have never used cones. I always go by the color of the
> flame in either the peep hole or the flue. I wish you luck because it is
> really beautiful glaze.
> Rick
> >I am still gathering info about how others fire their rutile blue glazes.
> >Mine are coming out white most of the time. I plan to slow the firing
> >and soak longer, but in the mean time i would very much like to hear some
> >success stories with this type of glaze:
> >
> >Dolomite 15.8
> >Custer Spar 30.0
> >Whiting 11.1
> >EPK 16.8
> >Flint 26.3
> >Rutile 8.0
> >
> >I fire to cone 11 in a rather heavy reduction, in about 9 hours. I wonder
> >why there are volumes of info about copper reds which give me very little
> >trouble anymore, yet the rutile blue remains a mystery. One person told
> >he has been making his living for 30 years off rutile blues but still
> >not know exactly what makes it turn blue, aside from the fact that a
> >specific firing schedule involving a soak seems to help.
> >Any info would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!
> >Paul B
> >
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> >
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> Send postings to
> You may look at the archives for the list or change your subscription
> settings from
> Moderator of the list is Mel Jacobson who may be reached at