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I Forge Iron

Plistix alternative?

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Oh yeah. ITC-100 is approx 70% zirconium silicate and 30% kaolin clay.

My experience mixing up my own kiln wash lead me to try something other than kaolin. Kaolin is hard to come by for reasonable here and the forge doesn't get hot enough for long enough to fire it into a decent matrix. My latest test was to sift the fines from some Green Cast (Can't recall the number) castable refractory I picked up for the new forge. I mixed the refractory cement(?) fines in the same proportions as the ITC, 70/30 and it's working okay where I applied it correctly.

I'm figuring out what correctly is for this recipe so I don't feel terrible there are places it's flaking off the cast refractory deck. It's holding up nicely as a wash on the Kaowool and places where the cast refractory wasn't almost slick smooth. I cast the forge floor on a piece of linoleum to make it smooth.

Ask you wife about kiln washes and binders for the zircopax. It's used for different kiln washes and slips, I'll bet she's a font of information. Please keep us up to day on what you find out and tinker up.

Frosty The Lucky.

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9 hours ago, FineEdge said:

I have a bag of zircopax, a bag of pure kaolin, silica and feldspar as well as some fire clay. My wife does pottery. Can I mix these in some combination to be an alternate to plistix or metrikote to coat kaowool or am I wasting my time?

I've used 4 parts zircopax to one part kaolin, and 3 parts zircopax to one part kaolin - they both work fine.  If you want to really get tricky, use rigidizer (colloidal silica) instead of water.  Easy to apply to rigidized kaowool, and once it fires up, it's reasonably durable.

Remember, your liner is a consumable - you will end up re-lining your forge eventually.


No, you're not wasting your time.

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On 2/15/2016 at 6:26 PM, Mikey98118 said:


You do know that you're in the wrong Washington, don't you? Why don't you move out here to the other Washington, and keep me company?

Oh yes, I'm well aware of that.

The only thing preventing my moving to the other Washington is that essential ingredient - a job.  I've been working for the same employer since 1987 - either I like it, or I'm not very good at interviewing for new jobs, or some combination of the two.

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Naw you both got it wrong: " James Black, a local blacksmith, is credited with creating the legendary Bowie knife carried by Jim Bowie at his blacksmith shop in Washington.

Washington AR, USA is where you want to be!  (close to the ABS school too!)

Never been to the left coast one but I spent 6 years right outside DC; got to watch the smoke rising from the riots in the 1960's.

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I think Thomas won that one:)

Did you ever wonder why it's called the Left Coast? You see there are two Californias; no, not the Northern and Southern parts But, the coast, where "the living is easy" and consciences are bruised, and all the rest of the state where people sweat out their livings in the real world. To be fair, plenty of people sweat out their livings on the coast, too...but who cares what the non-empowered think?

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