SECOND FIRING

The second baking is the procedure allowing the glazing of enamel and overlapped colours.
This phase gives a majolica appearance to the biscuit, which means that the terracotta, which was previously porous, after the glazing assumes the aspect and features of a hygienic and aesthetically pleasant object. The technique is similar to the one used for the first baking. The difference is that the baking temperature does not exceed 940-950°C, and the baking involves a 10-hour ascending phase and a 10-hour descending phase, or cooling. As for the second baking, it is important to ensure that all the objects to be inserted into the oven have had the enamel cleaned away from the base so as to avoid them sticking the support shelf.
In order to isolate a fully enamelled piece from the support shelf, such as a dish or a plate, it is necessary to use special pointed supports which detach the object from the shelf and leave only very little traces on the enamel surface. The supports are made of refractory material or simple biscuit in form of triangles, points and rooster paws that potters call "fibulae".
Baking requires accuracy and an ability to predict the behaviour of objects while they are being baked in the oven.
It is necessary to consider that enamels used for melting tend to flow over the vase surface with the risk of making it fall over causing the object to stick to the shelf. It is therefore important to respect distances among the objects.