Wednesday 20 March 2013

Repairing Ceramics with Superglue

Last night, when I walked through the door of the ceramics class, the lecturer immediately came up to me with a long face. My St Paul-St Louis church facade had cracked in two during the firing of the gold cross.

Frankly, I didn't care; I knew it would be repairable. But, he seemed really upset and apologetic.

I insisted that it would be absolutely fine after it was glued back together with epoxy resin. He rejoined with "Oh, not epoxy resin; that's an old fashioned technology."

Quite a few of the class had gathered round to witness the tragedy. Someone chirped up with, "Superglue's best." The lecturer gave his approval to this example of "new technology".

So, on the way home last night I purchased a 94p tube of the stuff from Spar and glued the two pieces of the church together.


Fixed and in a temporary position

That gold cross.
Spent the rest of last night's class washing away clay from the other building I have under construction.

The gold/brown coloured window frames, roof and doors have been painted with shellac so they don't get washed away - only the surrounding clay does - thus leaving them sticking up.

(Must be a more elegant phrase than 'sticking up'.)

Used a very wet brush with hot water

You can use rapid swirling motions

Or slow linear strokes

The clay that's 'washed away' is in fact absorbed by the brush which one then rinses in the bowl of hot water.The water gets full of clay very quickly so has to be replaced frequently.

I found this process of wielding a wet brush physically very tiring. What would I be like wielding a shovel for 8 hours a day?

No classes for three weeks but I'm hoping that someone will put these pieces in the kiln in the meantime.

The shellac will burn away in the kiln and the pieces should emerge with the window frames etc standing up or embossed.

Tango class tonight:

Last class for a few weeks.

Feel purposeful.

There is no Beginners class after Easter, so I will have to join the Improvers! If I do that then I'm determined not to spend the evening saying, "Sorry!" My attitude towards myself has completely changed over the last week and if after Easter (or indeed tonight) I perform incompetently then so be it; it's not a matter for apologising about.

Last night's dinner on a frayed shoestring:

Tin of sweet corn and rice.
Cost per head: £0.97

Currently listening to:

The new David Bowie CD.

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