Eric Jensen's Plus Side of Advancer Shelves

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I own approx. 50, 12x24" Advancer® shelves. I estimate that they’ve been fired 200-250 times in the 8 years since I bought them. In that time I believe I've cracked 2, one through personal clumsiness; one hairline crack which I spotted, cause unknown. I fire to cone 9 in reduction.

My assessment of KilnShelf.com Advancer® Shelves:

Pluses….

  • A considerable portion of my production is porcelain dinnerware. Loose kiln-wash and rubble from deteriorating shelves was once a major headache for me. I've eliminated the problems almost entirely with Advancer. They are very structurally sound, no noticeable erosion after 8 years of use.
  • They are still perfectly flat: I checked them with a straight-edge to be sure.
  • They are much lighter than the 1" thick clay shelves I once used; no small thing to an aging potter.
  • They're only slightly over ¼" thick. In a stack of 15 shelves, I've saved close to a foot of stacking space over the 1" shelves I once used. I store them all on one small cart on wheels.

Minuses….

  • I use them without any form of kiln wash, wanting to eliminate as much loose stuff in the firing as possible. Used this way, they are a bit "sticky" with the feet of some of my smaller porcelain ware. I deal with this by using a small amount of alumina in wax resist as a coating on the feet of the ware.

I consider them the best investment I made when moving to my current studio. I'm sure they've paid for themselves many times over in time and effort saved. It was a significant purchase which I've never regretted.


Eric Jensen

Studio Artist
Chicago, IL
4/30/09

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