The CMW team recently had the opportunity to visit Fiesta Tableware in Newell, WV. It was a thrill, as we always love visiting factories and seeing how they produce their ceramics. It is amazing that the way they work with clay is the same way the artist community does. They just think about it in a different way.
Below is more from our trip!
The handles at Fiesta Dinnerware are still attached by hand. They just use an attaching solution and boy are they fast!
The slip casting room was hopping. Making the classic Fiesta pitchers.
This called a mangler, which sounds scarier than it is. It is a drying system for the jiggers. The Fiesta pots and molds are moved throughout the factory, hanging from the ceiling. This allows for the drying to be timed, get some moving air, and save floor space from drying (which would eat up a ton of space)!
Check out Fiesta’s amazing, antique, end-grain wood floors in some parts of the factory!
The glaze line is so cool. The pots spin past a bank of spray guns!
After the spraying, the pots are wiped down on this huge sponge wheel.
This is one of the kilns at Fiesta Dinnerware. It’s a tunnel style kiln, where they the work is put on cars that travel through a long kiln. This particular kiln is amazing as it is super FAST! In this particular kiln, the pots go in on one end, are fired to Cone 10 and come out the other end, SIX (6!) hours later! And this is porcelain!. For anyone who thinks that clay is sensitive and needs to be babied, it is all about the quality of your clay (see the filter press images from our 1st post) and the quality of your making.