How To Use CMW’s UMF Calculator

Learn How to Calculate the UMF By Hand

Check Out a Sample Lesson From CMW’s Glazed & Confused Workshop

UMF Glaze Calculators: A great tool for glaze chemistry

Among the myriad of glaze formulation methods, U.M.F. (Unity Molecular Formula) Calculators are a potter’s secret weapon for achieving precise and consistent results.

UMF glaze calculators are designed to assist potters in formulating glazes with specific surfaces and textures in mind. At their core, these calculators utilize the concept of Unity Molecular Formula, which represents the  molecular ratios of the materials in the glaze. By inputting the desired materials and their respective proportions, you can generate custom recipes that perfectly align with your artistic vision.

Key features typically found in glaze calculators include:

  • Built-in Ingredient Database: Most calculators include a comprehensive database of ceramic materials and their corresponding oxide compositions. This gives users quick access to view their molecular formulas instantly.
  • Fine-Tune your Vision: Flexibility is paramount in glaze formulation. UMF calculators enable users to adjust oxide ratios, substitute materials, and experiment with different formulations before even mixing up a glaze. 
  • Effortless Batch Size Scaling: Whether making a single piece or a large series of work, UMF calculators facilitate easy batch size scaling. Users can plug-in the desired batch size, and the calculator automatically adjusts material quantities for consistent results.

Using UMF glaze calculators presents benefits for all skill levels:

  • Precision Made Easy: UMF calculators rely on scientific principles to offer precise control over glaze formulation. This translates to consistent application, predictable firing results, and eliminates the frustration of trial and error.
  • Creative Exploration: Artists can fearlessly explore a wide range of glaze formulations without wasted materials or failed experiments. This fosters creative exploration and the development of unique glaze recipes tailored to individual artistic styles, or just for the current project at hand.
  • Time and Resource Efficiency: Traditional glaze formulation methods often involve manual calculations and a lot of trial and error. UMF calculators streamline this process, allowing potters to optimize their workflow and focus on artistic creation.
  • Adapting to Change: With the ever-changing landscape of raw materials, UMF calculators empower you to efficiently substitute materials. This ensures your glazes remain consistent even when faced with shortages, discontinued ingredients, or any other changes that come up over time.
  • Community Collaboration: The widespread adoption of UMF calculators has fostered a vibrant online community of ceramic artists sharing recipes, techniques, and insights. This collaborative environment promotes knowledge exchange and encourages innovation within the pottery community.

The CMW teams has custom designed four free UMF glaze calculators to meet your specific needs: 

  • Basic UMF: This is the original, typically what our students rely on
  • EU/UK Version: Same great tool, specifically for European materials
  • Experimental UMF: The advanced option, incorporate the chemistry of your colorants rather than just the base glaze
  • UMF to Batch Calculator: Need to go from UMF to a complete recipe? This one’s for you!

All four calculators can be found and downloaded here.

You can also check out our two YouTube tutorial videos on the left on how to use our CMW UMF Glaze Calculator or to learn how to calculate the UMF by hand.

If you really want to learn more, we have a short workshop – Glazed and Confused:  Understanding the Unity Molecular Formula.  It explores the mysteries of the Unity Molecular Formula and learning how we use the U.M.F. to make our studios the best they can be.  Lifetime access is included.

Lastly, if you haven’t already, join our community.   Learn more by exploring our online courses and workshops, follow us on Social Media @ceramicmaterialsworkshop or sign up for our Newsletter.  

Together, we can build a community of informed and empowered ceramic makers who value quality and craftsmanship.

-The CMW Team

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