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Nettle

New Kiln Prep

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Nettle    1

Hiya,

I've been lurking for a good while, but now I need to ask a newbie question please. 

 

I've just had my first kiln delivered - I can't play with it yet because it's not wired in. The instructions say I need to 'burn in' the kiln and furniture before first use, so am I correct to assume that this should be done before I put kiln wash on the shelves? 

 

Cheers,

 

Annette

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Marcia Selsor    1,301

the reason for this is to seal the elements. I would wait for the kiln wash. There are probably not many things burning off from kiln wash but that is the reason behind it.

Marcia

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Denice    243

Just rewired my Skutt fired it empty to 2000F to seal the elements.   Denice

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GEP    863

It's just the kiln *elements* that need to be "burned in." This will burn off a protective oily coating, and it helps to start forming a new protective oxidized shell. The furniture and kiln wash are not involved here. You can apply kiln wash whenever you want.

 

Congrats on the new kiln!

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Nettle    1

OK, thanks for your replies. 

 

This is what made me think I needed to include the shelves:


 

5.9. Burn-in of kiln and furniture

 

CAUTION: Please remove the protection foil from the entire kiln first (bottom, rings and lid)!!! 

 

Before you start using your kiln for regular service you should run a firing with the empty kiln. For this purpose please do not close the exhaust fume opening on the side of the kiln. The “burning-in†is necessary to eliminate the remaining moisture from the kiln walls and to produce a protective oxide layer on the heating elements, which will significantly increase their service life. 

 

Power settings for the process of “burning-inâ€: 

• heat up with 100°C/h 

• end temperature 1050°C 

• dwell time 1 hour 30 minutes 

 

Please note that the service life of the heating elements will be prolonged significantly, when you do not close the exhaust fume opening up until 600–700°C, in the first as well as in future firing processes. 

 

While firing the kiln you can also burn-in the wood stilts and additional shelves (optional accessories). 

 

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Denice    243

I don't know who wrote those instructions but I don't think firing those wood stilts is a good idea.  Denice

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oldlady    1,323

it is interesting to dwell on the differences in language spoken by two countries speaking english.  what is an exhaust fume?

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Nettle    1

No idea what they mean by wood stilts, there's nothing in the box that fits that description. 

 

I'm guessing that 'exhaust fume' is a translation from the German as its a Rohde kiln. The English in the instructions is generally very good but there is the occasional clue that it's a translation. 

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I have just gotten a ROHDE kiln too, what model is yours and how are you wiring it in? You are in the UK or US? I am in the US so having it wired here is becoming a puzzle to figure out. I will then be following your lead as to burning it in, etc. as its is new as well. So thanks for asking these good Qs. Are you familiar with ROHDE any? 

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Joe_L    37

Hi Nettle,

 

I have a Rohde Ecotop 43L. My manual states "During the initial firing you can also burn in the hollow stilts and furniture...".  Elsewhere, it shows a photo of what I would call shelves and props and calls them "stilts and plates" and says these should be burnt in before use, referring back to the section on initial firing.

 

I must admit I kiln-washed my shelves and burnt-in the whole lot in the first firing on the assumption there's not much in the kiln wash to compete with the elements for oxygen (having not taken advice from Marcia first!).

 

Remember to tighten up your tensioning bands after the first firing (I checked - you do not need to do this after further firings.)

 

Joe

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Nettle    1

Hi Blackdogspotter. I'm in the UK and very usefully have a retired electrical engineer for a husband who very usefully took care of that side of things while I was at work. 

 

Hi Joe, I've got the Ecotop 60S. Looking in my paper manual it reads the same way as yours. I copied and pasted the paragraphs above from the online manual, which reads slightly differently. 

 

The kiln is currently burning in as I've got a couple of days off work after a busy weekend, and is up to 600 deg C. I opened the garage window but it was getting smelly in there so the side door is now open too. The manual suggested 100 C per hour up to 1050 C and then hold for 1.5 hours, so I had an opportunity to figure out the controller too.

 

Once it's cooled the next job is to tighten the tensioning bands and then get busy with the kiln wash. I could do with suggestions of how much water to add to achieve the right consistency. I guess it needs a day or so to dry in afterwards? 

 

There's an intake on the bottom of the kiln that the manual suggests should stay open until it's reached 600 to 700 deg C. There is also a plug for the exhaust pipe. What does plugging the exhaust achieve?

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oldlady    1,323

annette, congratulations on both having a useful husband and having a new kiln!  wonderful to have both.

 

there are several discussions on kiln wash and its application that have been posted over that last year or so.  if you go to the main forum page and type in "kiln wash" in the search box at the top right, you will see some true differences of opinion but good advice.

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Nettle    1

Thanks oldlady. It is indeed wonderful to have both.

 

Must remember to use the search box when appropriate. Good advice. 

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Joe_L    37

Sounds like you're on track. Which controller do you have?

 

Don't know why you'd block the exhaust - I've fitted the chimney to the port and fitted a flexible duct to take the fumes away which keeps the smell down a bit (and also use an extract fan in the studio to keep fresh air exchanging).

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perkolator    54

Congrats, always nice to get new equipment - especially your first kiln!

 

Yes you want to do the break-in firing for the reasons already stated.  

 

I've always been told to pre-fire all kiln furniture prior to actual use in a stack -- you never know if there's a manufacturing defect that will show up in the first firing, this is cheap insurance to make sure.  I've had brand new custom SiC kiln shelves bloat in the 1st firing and also new electric kiln shelves crack in 1st firing with no weight on them.  Things happen.

 

I'm a fan of kiln wash on my electric kiln floor, hate removing glaze from soft brick.  I also add a thin film of mortar to the top soft pricks to keep down abrasion when reaching inside.

 

Good call on re-torquing of the tension bands on the outer jacket.

Edited by perkolator

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neilestrick    1,381

I'm a fan of kiln wash on my electric kiln floor, hate removing glaze from soft brick.  I also add a thin film of mortar to the top soft pricks to keep down abrasion when reaching inside.

 

You shouldn't need kiln wash on the floor, because you should never be firing pots on the floor. Put a shelf down there, about an inch up. Broken kilns shelves are good for posts there. :)

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perkolator    54

 

I'm a fan of kiln wash on my electric kiln floor, hate removing glaze from soft brick.  I also add a thin film of mortar to the top soft pricks to keep down abrasion when reaching inside.

 

You shouldn't need kiln wash on the floor, because you should never be firing pots on the floor. Put a shelf down there, about an inch up. Broken kilns shelves are good for posts there. :)

 

Sounds like you don't have multiple operators using your equipment :)   If it were just me using the equipment I could get away with nothing, but with undergraduates who simply don't care about something they don't own personally, I've gotta do as much as possible to prevent little disasters

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Babs    386

My new kiln came with instructions for a very slow first firing, like 20ish hours to a temp I can't remember and away from shed, all plugholes open

Electric brick kiln, top loader

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