Kiln Wash I
Calcined Alumina (EPK) 50%
Kaolin (China Clay) 25%
Kiln Wash II
Alumina Hydrate 50 Grams
EPK 25 Grams
Silica 25 Grams
Once, when I was a new potter, I bought some kiln wash at a pottery supply, slathered on my shelves and after firing a glaze kiln load, found that everything - I mean everything - stuck to the shelves. After much puzzling, I finally decided the kiln wash was at fault. Nothing I could prove, but ever since, I have mixed up my own wash.
Kiln wash is pretty simple. The above are two mixes--I use the last one usually. I mix it up, put it in a large Yogurt tub and mark it with a black Sharpie. The consistency should be about the same as really thick cream--Thick enough to cover well, yet thin enough to spread evenly.
When I apply it to a new kiln shelf, I use a soft, goat hair brush, apply it on in one direction; then when the first layer is thoroughly dry, lay down another layer in the opposite direction.
Before firing a glaze load, I dust the shelves lightly with Alumina. During the unloading, I tap the empty shelf over a large bucket to reclaim the powder.
All this may seem elementary, but these are the little things that new potters have to learn along the way. It's good to share.