Jump to content

Patrick

Members
  • Content Count

    47
  • Joined

  • Last visited

Everything posted by Patrick

  1. I still can't believe I am typing this, but I found about 1000 hard fire brick behind a co-workers garage. ... He told me to come get 'em. I asked what he wanted for them. ... He simply said come get 'em. So now I have a problem; I have to build a kiln. ... I know. I know. You fine folks would be happy to help remove this burden from me, and that is very kind and (uh-hem) expected. But I've reeeally wanted a larger kiln for a while now. Nat gas power burner. Circa 30 cubic feet. Gas company is crunching their numbers to get me 600k btu/hour to my shop. Normally fire cone 6. Might go back to 10 also. If you had to build a thousand-brick kiln that you could fire with both nat gas and wood, what would you build? (Local waste disposal company said I could have all the wood I wanted, just come get it) ... Gosh it's great to have these kinds of problems for once! I used to feel like this looking at the Sears catalog before Christmas! OK. Question for you guys who've seen a brick or two in your time: Empire DP (Known. Check.) Scratching head on 3 other types (googled to no avail other than Davis Fire Brick Company, Oak Hill, OH): Davis - Savage Davis - OHC Davis - Hi Grade Ring a bell with any of you guys? Guessing since they were paired with Empire DPs (colleague salvaged them all from same location 11 years ago), crossing fingers that they all have about the same rating. I'll definitely place Empires in hot face areas. Not sure how many Empires there are. If I have enough, great. If not, I'll place the others where they can be removed/replaced without having to contort myself too much or as non-hot face floor. Going to pick them up this weekend. I'll stop this one here, and maybe start another about the kiln when I get them all home safe and sound. Thanks y'all. Pat
  2. Patrick

    Used fire brick changed my plans

    Floor's in. Going to be a catenary arch. 45"w x 60"h x 36"d (inside measurements). I appreciate everyone's comments on the advisability or lack thereof of this kiln type and of my construction materials. ... But I just gotta build one! It's what a kiln is supposed to look like! I wouldn't be happy if I didn't. It's the same reason I once bought a 28 year old Peterbilt instead of a 5 year old Freightliner. It was what a truck was supposed to look like! Granted, I got older and sold that piece of crap ... but still! I'm sure some of you understand. OBTW - Gas company put in 1 1/4" service line. So much for 2". That will still be enough btu's though. Well, I'm off to run gas to my shop and hook up my gas stove before freezing weather sets in. Y'all have a good rest of your weekend.
  3. Patrick

    Used fire brick changed my plans

    Thanks for the photos Mark. They are worth more than a thousand words, for sure. How's your arm, by the way? Hope it's healing quickly. Poured my slab (6'x6') this weekend, as we had a little warm spell. It's under insulation now to cure, as we will have some cold snaps before it is done curing. I have decided on the type of kiln I will be building, which I will go more into later. I've got to run, but wanted to keep you abreast of my progress. Next up will be digging a trench from the slab all the way to the meter (hahaha!) and getting pipe installed - maybe next weekend, weather permitting. OBTW: Got and read Nils Lou's The Art of Firing. Lots of good things in there. Thanks for the recommendation. Hope you all had/are having a good weekend.
  4. Patrick

    Looking to buy a pottery wheel for a beginner

    Might keep an eye on govdeals.com - a government (think public schools - art departments) auction site. I just snagged 2 Klopfenstein treadle wheels and a spray booth/cabinet for $150 yesterday. You have to look regularly every 2 weeks or so.
  5. Patrick

    Used fire brick changed my plans

    You can look at the above photo of the meter and dog and kiln shed wall. ... 8 feet maybe? Just bought the pipe wrap. Thank you sir. I can put my mullet back under my ball cap and the rubberized undercoating back on the shelf. ... Whew. Thought I was gonna show some true colors there for a minute!
  6. Patrick

    Used fire brick changed my plans

    I know. Crazy. I was at least expecting them wanting plastic pipe with a metal riser. I don't think they would mind if I did plastic/metal riser. The way he was talking, I'm thinking he was trying to help me out and keep it simple. Might also have to do with the availability of 2" plastic/metal riser - i.e. Home Depot here is only showing 1" plastic. May go redneck and spray it with rubberized undercoating or something like that if I go with steel.
  7. Patrick

    Used fire brick changed my plans

    I know! It's exciting! The bad thing is I haven't put anything in stone yet (pun, anyone?) and I feel like a dog walking in circles trying to find the perfect spot to lay down.
  8. Patrick

    Used fire brick changed my plans

    Welcome to Smiths Grove, KY. Set your watch back 20 years. On a serious note, my guess is because the shed is so darn close. Very well could be that it should be.
  9. Patrick

    Used fire brick changed my plans

    I actually think I am going to pour a concrete pad this weekend, and weather permitting, I may dig a trench and plan what I'll need. Gas company guy said he would like to see regular ol' threaded steel pipe buried about 6 inches or so (!!!!!) with an flexible connector on the kiln side of the pipe. His wish is my command. Whatever gets the meter in. Definitely going home improvement store threaded pipe with that short of a run. 2" for sure. I'm thinking about running a T into my studio (above grade per code, of course)for a small gas stand alone fireplace to keep clay from freezing this winter. Last year I disliked playing the game of "take what you throw in the house to dry , and re-wedge the clay you just wedged yesterday because re-froze". I'd be happy with a nice constant 45 degrees or so. Just enough to keep water fluid. Now if I could just figure out where I want this darned pad poured...
  10. Patrick

    Used fire brick changed my plans

    My pooch (actually, my wife's pooch, but we know how that goes ) checking out the gas company's installation. Thought they were going to put it outside the fence, but they changed their minds. Cool. Now I just need to run my pipe inside the kiln shed and they will install the meter. I know what I'll be doing this weekend. One step at a time.
  11. Patrick

    Uneven temperature Minnesota flat topkiln

    J.T. Abernathy in MI had burners half way up the kiln also. His theory was put the heat where you need it. Supposedly a 30% decrease in fuel usage as opposed to similar kiln - actually as compared to Marc Ward's numbers. Would be interesting to see one with and one without and see the difference. Hmmm. I feel an empirical data collection moment coming on... If you added a burner up half way up, theoretically it would only have to increase the cost of firing by the additional electricity to run the blower. Making an additional burner would be in initial outlay, but if it cut costs, just a matter of time for break-even and then savings. ... Just brainstorming for ya.
  12. Patrick

    Used fire brick changed my plans

    Gas company just came and we agreed on a meter location ... just on the other side of the chain link fence next to my shed!!! I have a 10 foot trench to dig to run my line!! That makes me smile. I was keeping fingers crossed that they wouldn't insist on putting it next to house meter for some off the wall reason(100 feet away). They did say it would be a few weeks before they would have it installed though, but I ain't complaining. They are going to put in a 415 CFH meter, and said it could be opened up to provide 600k btu per hour (which I also read somewhere else that meter is capable of that). Not a bad day.
  13. Patrick

    Used fire brick changed my plans

    Half way. Photo is made from the west facing east. Our prevailing winds/storms come from west/southwest. Eventually, I'd like to put up some sliding doors on front and rear, then anything smaller than an EF-2 would be a non-issue.
  14. Patrick

    Kiln still stalling

    If it were me, I would take the 12" WC regulator off and leave it off and replace the one at the tank with an adjustable high pressure regulator. You're firing manual anyway, so it's not like you won't be watching it. Talk about being able to fine tune your pressure and your air flaps... it'll be a whole different level of control. I think you'd appreciate it. BUT (and it's a big but!) the quicker you let the fuel out, the quicker a tank will freeze up. Ergo, on you next firing, have a 20 pound tank on hand. If you do an Amazon search for "adjustable high pressure regulator propane", you'll get a good idea of what you're looking for. Also - was thinking of this today at work - regulators can freeze up also. Does either of your regulators get icy? Not just cold with condensation, but icy? That can also put a kink in the works. EDIT: If the 5 pound is adjustable, just take the 12" WC one off and see what you can do. No purchase necessary.
  15. Patrick

    Used fire brick changed my plans

    Done enough for right now. I'll move my smaller propane conversion kilns in there sometime this week and hopefully bisque this weekend. Gravel and a concrete pad are on the to-do list. Gas company is coming by to talk about meter placement in the next few days. ... One foot in front of the other. Pick 'em up and put 'em down.
  16. Patrick

    Kiln still stalling

    Linda, just as a point of reference, according to Ward Burners Kiln Cubic Feet and BTUs, if your kiln has 9" of insulating brick (the soft brick), you need approximately 10,000 btu per cubic foot of kiln space per hour. You have an 8 cubic foot kiln. That's approximately 80,000 btus per hour to hit cone 6 (APPROXIMATELY). I haven't checked the orifice size chart, but here it is for your reference. At 11" WC (I know you have 12" so 11" should be fine), you would need an orifice size of at least 7/64" (for only one burner!) to put out that many btus at that pressure(11" WC). ... That is unless you increase the pressure (which was why I brought up adjustable high pressure regulators in previous post). More pressure = more fuel = more btu/hour through same orifice. Don't go voiding warranties or blowing stuff up though! Make sense?
  17. Patrick

    Kiln still stalling

    Also, not sure how comfortable you are in messing with the regulators (or replacing them with adjustable high pressure regulators), but a 100 pound propane tank has anywhere between 100 and 200 psi, depending on ambient temps, so you have lots of room here to see if you can get something that works better for you.
  18. Patrick

    Kiln still stalling

    OK. Quick check to see if it's a tank freezing issue. Take a 20 pound propane tank - the kind you use on a gas grill (borrow one from a friend if need be). A 100 pound tank should have the same valve as a 20 pound tank. Fire your kiln with the 100 pound tank until it stalls. As soon as it stalls, turn the gas valves off, swap to the 20 pound propane tank, and turn the gas back on. (No worries about pressure differences in a 20 and 100 pound tank. Propane makes it's own pressure by boiling at -43 degrees Fahrenheit.) The kiln will be hot enough that it will re-ignite the propane as soon as it enters the kiln. Propane ignites between 920 and 1020 degrees Fahrenheit (Some will say "unsafe" - do what you feel safe with.) Try to finish out the firing. You should only lose a few hundred degrees in all this swaparoo. I've shut down the kiln, drove to the store to swap out a 20 pound tank, came back home, hooked it all back up, and only lost about 300 degrees. If it is a freezing issue, this will let you know for sure.
  19. Patrick

    Kiln still stalling

    Do you have a pressure gauge on your line between the tanks and the burner? I'll bet your tanks are freezing up and the pressure is dropping ( = less fuel = decreasing temps). If you have multiple tanks daisy-chained together, don't run them all at the same time. As one starts to freeze up, turn it off and the other on. I've babied firings this way, shutting one off and the other on as they freeze and thaw. If you only have one tank, a second one would be a possible fix. If it is a air flow problem, take a air hose (hair dryer?) and shoot fresh air in next to burner. You should see temp increase. If you don't, you're burning all the fuel you put in, and you need more fuel - thus, your pressure may be dropping when the propane is too cold to boil (vaporize) in the volume you need it to. Make sense?
  20. Patrick

    Used fire brick changed my plans

    Holy cow, that book ain't cheap. May have to try inter-library loan! Unless you guys know where to buy it that I ain't looking.
  21. Patrick

    Used fire brick changed my plans

    It's hard to see, but they are actually about 15 feet behind the rear wall of the shed over the edge of the gravel alley. And the forced air blowers will mean my exhaust will pretty much be on the ground as opposed to out a tall chimney. Thanks for looking out for me though!
  22. Patrick

    Used fire brick changed my plans

    Short one piece of metal on roof and some half walls. Should get most of that bought and up today and then start digging out the area to pour my pad. Started to rain, so I threw my crap under it and called it a day. I didn't want to melt. I guess this is going from a "Hey, I got some brick. What are your thoughts?" post to a photo album of the build. ... Right on.
  23. Patrick

    Used fire brick changed my plans

    Started a kiln shed. Should be done by the end of this weekend. Going to be 14'x10'. 9ft high in front and about 7 1/2' high in back. Won't put up walls until later - if ever. Just a little 2' rain blocking wall on the front up near the roof, as most of our storms/prevailing winds will be hitting the front of it. Once it's done-enough, I can negotiate a future meter location and bury a gas line to it. My goal tomorrow is to get the roof done (Ha!) and then call around to see what I can find out about the bricks - thanks for the pointers Mark! Rae, thanks for the heads up re: cats and arches. I'll keep that in mind. Unfortunately, I have a personality tendencies that want to say not just "Rae told me so" but also "... and she was right!" We shall see. Most of the brick (95%) are Davis Savage. Neil and Mark, I absolutely agree with the fuel costs being higher. Since I am not going the wood-fired route with this one, I have considered salt/soda. I definitely see myself procuring some soft brick in the future. ... Still a lot up in the air. We'll figure it out though. Hope you guys/gals have a good weekend.
  24. Patrick

    How did you learn to fire your own kiln?

    +1 on learn by doing. See what works and do that again. See what doesn't work and don't do that again/make adjustments to your kiln. The largest problems I have had with gas kilns I fashioned was stalling them out before target temp because my exit hole(s) were too small. Rather have too large of an exit flue you can close down than one that's "just the right size" based on head scratching. (+1 what Neil said.) Congrats! Regrading hoods/vents. I've just used HVAC ducting, sheet metal, snips, rivets. The photo will give you an idea. Not ideal, but it's cheap and works to get majority of the hot air out of my 100 year old wooden garage. The metal gets hot enough to screw up the galvanized finish (which is probably toxic by some measure) but that's about it.
  25. Patrick

    Used fire brick changed my plans

    Got them home safe and sound.
×

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use.