The Ultimate Bone China Quiz

By: HowStuffWorks.com Contributors

The Ultimate Bone China  Quiz
Image: iStockphoto.com/Aleš Senožetnik

About This Quiz

Ever wonder why your grandmother prizes her bone china collection and won't let anyone under 50 use it? Bone china is expensive, because it takes a huge amount of time and many steps to produce, some of them only by hand! Nevertheless, bone china is actually sturdier than anyone realizes. Take our quiz to find out why grandma should at least let you wash the dishes.
To which category of tableware does bone china belong?
earthenware
stoneware
porcelain
Bone china is the strongest and most translucent type of porcelain.

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What makes bone china so strong?
It is put through the kiln more times than fine china and regular porcelain.
It has calcined bone ash incorporated into it.
At the end of the 18th century, Josiah Spode developed a new method for making stronger porcelain, which involved the addition of calcined bone ash into the clay mixture.
It is made from porcelain, which is a really sturdy material.

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How many main processes are there in making bone china?
two
four
There are four main processes: clay making, mold making, glazing and decorating.
six

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What are the main ingredients that go into the final mix used to make bone china?
bone ash, china clay, ball clay, flint, feldspar
There are five main ingredients that go into the final mix: china clay, regular clay, bone clay, flint and feldspar.
bone ash, china clay, water
china clay, regular clay, bone clay, flint, feldspar

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Which color china does the Lenox factory produce most?
ivory
cream
white
Eighty percent of china produced in the Lenox factory is white, 20 percent is ivory.

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Both the white and ivory clay mixtures are the color gray. How does the Lenox factory know which is which?
They add green vegetable dye to the ivory mix.
They add green vegetable dye to the ivory mix. The dye burns off when the porcelain is in the kiln.
They label the barrels and storage containers.
The white mixture is much thicker than the ivory.

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When making bone china, after the final mix is prepared it is pumped into a filter press. What does the filter press do to it?
It filters out impurities that may have accidentally mixed in.
It removes air and water from the mix.
The filter press removes air and water from the mix, leaving it with a moisture content of 20 percent.
It forms it into tubes called pugs.

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When making bone china, the final mix is put through an extruder. What does an extruder do to it?
It forms it into sheets of clay.
It forms it into tubes called pugs and removes more air.
An extruder presses the sheets of clay into tubes, called pugs, and takes out more air.
I reduces its moisture content by a further 10 percent.

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About how much does a clay plug weigh?
20 pounds (9.1 kg)
30 pounds (13.6 kg)
Each pugs weighs about 30 pounds (13.6 kg) and looks like a giant piece of chalk.
100 pounds (45.5 kg)

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When making bone china, the pugs of clay are stacked into pyramids. Why are the pug pyramids then covered with plastic wrap?
to facilitate easy shipping
to protect the clay from dirt and dust particles floating around the factory
to maintain the correct level of humidity
The pug pyramids are covered in plastic wrap on all sides to form a protective tent that maintains the correct humidity level.

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Metal master molds are used in the production of bone china. Why are the molds sprayed with a soapy mixture?
to help release the molds later on in the process
The metal master molds are sprayed with a soapy mixture, the residue of which helps release the molds later on in the process.
to clean off any dust or dirt
to help preserve the molds and make them last longer

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At the molding stage in bone china production, how many people does it take to fill a metal mold with plaster?
one
two
It takes two people: one to pour the plaster into the mold and the other to spin the mold so that the plaster distributes evenly.
three

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When producing bone china, plaster molds are made from metal molds. Why can't just the metal molds be used?
Plaster molds draw out more moisture from the clay, something which metal molds can't do.
Though it would seem to make sense to use metal molds and save the step of making plaster molds from them, plaster molds draw out more moisture from the clay, which metal molds can't do.
Metal molds will melt when exposed to the heat of the kilns.
The clay does not adhere well to the metal molds.

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How many times can some plaster molds be used?
Dinner plate molds can be used 100 times.
Dinner plate molds can be used 100 times, while molds for more intricate items, such as cups, serving dishes and cream holders, can be used 10-15 times.
Each mold can be used a maximum of 10 times.
Dinner plate molds last for years, molds for more delicate items for about six months.

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What does a greenware plate refer to?
a line of Lenox bone china
an ivory china plate that is green from dye
a china plate before it has been through the kiln
Greenware refers to clay pieces that have not yet been fired in the kiln.

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When producing bone china, how are handles attached to cups?
by hand
Handles are affixed to china cups by hand. Part of the finishing process, before they are put in the kiln, involves checking that the handles are securely attached.
via a profiling machine
via a jiggering unit

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To harden a raw clay plate into bone china, it is put through a bisque kiln. How hot does the kiln get?
212 degrees Fahrenheit (100 degrees Celsius)
1,832 degrees Fahrenheit (1,000 degrees Celsius)
The bisque kiln, powered by gas, reaches 2,290 degrees Fahrenheit (1,254 degrees Celsius). Pieces are fired for nine hours.
2,290 degrees Fahrenheit (1,254 degrees Celsius)

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What is a vibratory finish?
a process which makes a piece of china microwave safe
a process which polishes and smoothes the china
It is a bath of smooth stones and water, which smoothes and polishes the china after it comes out of the kiln.
another term for the glazing process

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What can a glazed piece of china be decorated with?
enamels, decals, precious metals
A glazed piece of china can be decorated with enamels, decals or precious metals. Some designs or aspects of the design must be done by hand, while others can be done by machine.
paint, precious metals, crystals
precious metals, non-precious metals, enamel

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You Got:
/19
iStockphoto.com/Aleš Senožetnik

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