Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Kilns, Kilns, Kilns.

I don't have a mega problem, but a problem none the less that effects my work. I need a kiln! I have one, but its a test kiln. Super tiny. Not to mention I still haven't gotten an electrician to come and install the right power outlet. almost. Right now I am fortunate to have a dear friend that allows me to use her schools mega walk in closet kiln. However, I feel like such a flake going over there and asking when its okay to use it and mixing my stuff in with her high school students clay purple animals. So, until I can afford my dream kiln here are some photos of beautiful kilns that people have built themselves. Am I the only dork that drools over stuff like this? Enjoy!

For more info on this gas kiln and construction photos, click here

Robert Compton pottery has a great page about the construction of his gas kiln.
Click here to see more

Sadly, I have only had experience with electric kilns. I have heard that gas is more versatile, but harder to control and sometimes more variable. Oxidization is better in a gas than electric. My pottery is simple so I haven't had the want or need to make affects that a gas burning kiln can do. A gas kiln needs to be supervised constantly and is much harder or impossible to move (especially if they are like the ones in the pictures I posted). Gas kilns also take up more room and require much more precautions. Depending on where you live, you may not be able to get a meter big enough for one. If reduction is a must for you, go with gas. Plan ahead and make sure you don't plan on moving anytime soon. I like that I can trust almost anyone with an electric firing, because it is so easy. I also like the kiln sitters and timers built in to electric kilns. Its not about being lazy either, (because I am) it also has a lot to do with not knowing what the hell to do if I had a gas kiln and wanted to make crystal and soda affects and such. I'm still just learning simple glazing styles.
Amazing wood burning stove!

From Morning Crane Tea blog (check followed blogs in sidebar to see all his photos)

Wood burning kilns have a lot of the pros and cons as a gas kiln and it needs to be fed wood a lot. I never used one, I say "a lot", because I heard they are a lot of work and you are what keeps the temperature up with wood. They are easier to build than a gas kiln however and can be made at various sizes. Hope this was helpful in filling you in a bit about kilns. If you have and questions, ideas, suggestions, or corrections. Please comment.

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