So....I knew this would happen. A couple of weeks ago, I posted that I was having trouble firing bronze clay. The last few batches did not fire/sinter correctly. What came out of the firing pan was basically a pile of bronze dust. At the time, I couldn't think of anything that I had done differently. I hadn't.
This time, I made up a batch of worry beads, let them air dry for a few days (actually about a week before I got around to firing them), and then fired them using the exact same batch of carbon, in the same pan, and using the exact same firing schedule.
Guess what? Perfect. All fired beautifully. I'm at a loss for what's going wrong. Planets out of alignment, the kiln gods were being good to me - who knows? My kiln is fairly new, so I really don't think there is a calibration issue. Older kilns are known to have that happen, but as far as I know, it's not a sporadic thing. All of my silver always fires just fine, my copper always fires just fine. It's just the bronze.
I'll keep posting everytime I do a bronze firing - we'll see. I really, really like the bronze clay. I'd love to know what the problem is.