They were very slow bisqued and survived, but I found little black specks all over them on every shelf of the kiln. Mild anxiety set in, they brushed off the bisqued ware but I knew I couldn't glaze the plates if they were going to have black dots embedded in the glaze. I thought of firing upside down as the glaze surface would be underneath, what to do? Eventually I called Ray Cavill my "old" teacher and we discussed my dilemma. He's worth his weight, came up with the reason for the black dots. The burners! Because my shed is near the Bay the salt air had rusted inside the burners and when lit the rust was blown through the kiln. He is a genius! I will have to use a wire brush and clean out the rust, vacuum out the burners and spray some WD40 on them between each firing. Big job with four burners.
I didn't have time to do all this before the plate deadline, so brought them to Brisbane and paid to have them fired. All done and dusted and being packed ready to go.
This last couple of weeks I have been busy writing a paper for a conference in China in September. It was a wonderful surprise to be accepted but I have had to write like mad to have it finished to submit it for translation next week. It's all go, go, go.