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Mason Stain Helpful Information
Mason Stains can be used to color glazes, slips, and clay bodies. They are fritted to insure color consistency from batch to batch. The fired color should be almost identical to the stain in its raw state. Mason stains can be used at all firing temperatures (except tin-antimony-lead yellows and pinks fire only to cone 02) but are formulated specifically for use in oxidizing atmospheres. Therefore, in oxidation firings to cone 10, the colors are reliable and consistent. Stains will vary in color, however, depending upon the medium into which they are mixed and firing temperature.
Stains in Clays and Slips
Best results can be expected when stains are added to a white clay body or slip base. Fire to normal maturation temperature. Percentages of stain added to clay or slip should be determined by testing.
Stains in Glazes
Stains can be used to color either transparent or opaque base glazes. Stains are generally added in amounts ranging from 1-10% of the glaze batch. The higher the percentage of stain, the deeper the fired color will be. The base glaze should contain a calcium carbonate content of 12-15% and have no zinc. Zinc can adversely affect colors, especially chrome-tin pinks, vanadium yellows, and cobalt blues. The percentage of stain plus opacifier should equal 15% of the total glaze batch

Example 1                   Example 2
Base glaze     100%      Base glaze     100%      
Zircopax    10%           Tin Oxide     7%      
Stain     5%                 Stain     8%      


MASON COLOR WORKS - HISTORICAL FACTS

James Mason, born in Tean, Staffordshire, England, founded Mason Color as "Bleak Place Color Works" in 1842. He and his wife, Mary Skerratt of Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire, well known as a superbly competent color chemist, operated the plant until Jamesí death in 1865.

After serving an apprenticeship under his parents, their only child, Augustus Frederick Mason, with his wife Keziah Jones, took ownership and continued producing colors at Bleak Place. Their son, Fortunatus Quartus Mason, obtained degrees in Inorganic Chemistry and Analysis from the Wedgwood Institute, working with his parents until leaving England for America in 1902.

Fortunatus settled in East Liverpool, Ohio, and founded Mason Color Works, the first ceramic color factory in the USA, in October, 1902. "F. Q." Mason, as he was widely known, married Druscilla Creighton of Malvern, Ohio. They had six children, of whom Gertrude Mason and Ronald K. Mason took up employment at the plant, continuing the family legacy.

When F. Q. died in 1961, "Ron" Mason became president. He and his wife, Marjorie Franklin of East Liverpool, had three children, David, Ann and Carol, all of whom worked at the East Liverpool plant. Ron was very widely respected in the ceramic industry, and the plant continued to prosper under his leadership.

After Ron died in 1991 his son, David, became president, Carol and Ann vice-presidents. They successfully continued to expand the plant and the product line. David became ill and died at 49 years old in July, 2000. An old family friend, Don Linger, then became president of Mason Color Works, Inc. A new Board of Directors was established, and the company continues to expand, and is now shipping its famous products to many countries throughout the world.

2002 marks the 160th anniversary of Mason Color as a family concern. Its products are widely used in ceramics, investment casting, swimming-pool plasters and surfaces, home fireplace appliances, and various other industries. The superb quality of its inorganic pigments combined with low prices and rapid delivery enables Mason to remain at the top of its field.

Reference Notes
1. Can be used as a 'body stain' in porcelain at high temperatures. All of the brown colors can be used as 'body stains' but will vary in shade considerably depending on the composition of the body and temperature at which it is fired.
1a. Use only as a 'body stain'
Firing Temperatures can only be a rough guide. Firing at 2200 degrees F on a slow schedule may give the equivalent maturing as firing at 2300 degrees F on a fast schedule. The cycle, atmosphere and rate of cooling will affect the color.
2. Max. firing limit 2156 degrees F (1180 degrees C).
3. Max. firing limit 2300 degrees F (1260 degrees C).
4. Max firing limit 1976 degrees F (1080 degrees C).
Zinc Oxide influences the color in a glaze more than any other element. Generally, zincless glazes should not contain magnesium oxide. Some colors containing zinc are to be used in a zincless glaze. The zinc in the color is in a combined form and will not harm the color, but free zinc oxide in the glaze can destroy the color.
5. Do not use zinc in glaze.
6. May be used with zinc or without zinc.
7. Zinc not necessary, but gives better results.
8. Best results with no zinc.
Calcium Oxide content as calcium carbonate should be between 12-15% for best color development. Adding the molecular equivalent of calcium oxide with wollastonite, a natural calcium silicate, often gives better uniformity. The increased silica from the wollastonite must be subtracted or the glaze will have a poor surface.
9. Glaze must contain 6.7 to 8.4% CaO (12-15% CaCO3)

KEY TO COMPOSITION CHART
Al - Aluminum Oxide
B - Boric Oxide
Ca - Calcium Oxide
Cd - Cadmium
Co - Cobalt Oxide
Cr - Chromium Oxide
Fe - Iron Oxide
Mn - Mangenese Dioxide
Ni - Nickel Oxide
Pr - Praseodymium Oxide
Se - Selenium
Sb - Antimony Oxide
Si - Silicone Dioxide
Sn - Tin Dioxide
Ti - Titanium Dioxide
V - Vanadium Pentoxide
Zn - Zinc Oxide
Zr - Zirconium Dioxide

Note: The recommendations made herein are based on our research and the research of others, and are believed to be accurate. No guarantee of their accuracy is made. The products discussed are sold without warranty, expressed or implied, and upon such condition, purchasers shall make their own tests to determine the suitability of such products for their particular purposes. Likewise, statements concerning the possible use of these products are not intended as recommendations to use these products in infringement of any patent. For safety and handling questions, please refer to your Materials Safety Data Sheet that was supplied with your purchase.
LEAD IS NOT USED IN THE MANUFACTURING OF OUR PRODUCTS.
Mason Stains
Sheffield-Pottery.com
Route 7
P.O. Box 399
Sheffield, MA
01257
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