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Christine Homer Weaving

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Salt Glazing Wood Firing Raku Firing Gas Firing Pit Firing Firing Details

Firing Methods and Results

The process of  Raku firing differs from other firing methods because the pots are removed from the kiln at their maximum temperature.

Thermal shock of this rapid cooling is stressful on the pottery. It is achieved by using an open clay body. The porosity of the clay body acts like a shock absorber, preventing the body from immediately fracturing when the pot is removed from the kiln.

Raku glazes are often fractured,  which are referred to as Crazing.  These crackle glazes are enhanced by the post firing smoking of Raku pots that embeds carbon into the crackles of the glaze.


Raku Firing Process

Glazed is applied by dipping the bisque pots into a bath of minerals. Glazed pieces are thoroughly dried before the kiln is loaded.

Raku Firing Process


Raku is frequently associated with Zen Buddhism, and the Japanese Tea Ceremony.  It was developed in Japan in the 16th century.

The word Raku means "joy" or "happiness".  


Pots are heated to 1800 degrees F, the kiln is opened and each molten glazed pot is removed with a pair of tongs. Follow this link for plans on building a
Clam Shell Raku Kiln
The extremely hot pots are placed into
 containers of sawdust which produces thick black smoke. The carbon is wicked into
the porous clay body,  blackening the clay and accentuating the crackle pattern of the glaze.

Raku Firing Process

Post Firing

When the pots have cooled, they are removed from the smoking chamber and doused with water. 

 The soot covered pots are scrubbed clean to expose the crazed surface and unusual patterns created by this firing process.



Raku Pottery

Because of the porous aspect of the clay body and crazing of the glazes, Raku pots are not watertight.
Their function is in their beauty.


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