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grayfree

Help KIln was set to hold for 35 hours instead of minutes

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grayfree    3

Hi somehow I managed to do the dumbest thing!! I have an L&L kiln easy fire. I set if for a fast glaze with hold of 35 minutes only to be agast this morning when it is still firing. I discovered I set it to hold 35 hours instead of minutes. I have cut it off now and it probably held about 10 hours. I have raku clay and speckeled brown stone in there with cone 6 glazes on them. What in the world should I expect with that long of a hold time.. I hope and pray my peices are not ruined I am a new potter and have some of my best stuff (of course ) in there .....BOOO :( Anyone else ever do this??

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Matt Oz    67

Well, depending how vitrified your clay body is at cone 6, it may be okay.

If you used glazes that tend to be runny, they will be verrry runny, a matte glaze may come out cool though.

 

I did over fire once, not very pretty.

Good luck, hope you get something out of it.

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Denice    243

I had a high school ceramics teacher do this and everything melted into a puddle. What cone does your raku clay fire to? Using Cone 6 glazes on a raku clay body is risky to start with do you mean 06 glaze? Let us know how it came out. Good Luck Denice

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grayfree    3

Oh my .........I dont really know what kind of raku clay it is I buy from my teacher and he and some others us cone 6 glazes all the time on it......so it must be ok for that. it comes from highwater clay.

 

I do have one very runny glazes archies base on the rim of one pot the others I think are pretty stable. A couple of chinos and amaco firebrick. WEll I hope I dont have to buy new kiln furniture!! That would not be good. We will certainly see and I will post pictures if you promise not to laugh!! I am a new potter remember only been doing this 6 months!

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Chris Campbell    1,086

You used to be a new potter ... Now you have earned a 'been there/done that' credit..

Also, you will never forget to double check your settings again. :)

Post pictures ... We all want to see what happened.

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Lucille Oka    16

This response is as if we were good friends. I am not going to be as sorrowful.

 

This is from your own L&L kiln firing manual-

NOTE: It is critical for someone to be present for, and especially at the end of, each firing. This is particularly true for this first firing. Even if you have an AutoCone Back-up - no safety device is entirely foolproof.

 

I can understand a few minutes over firing but 10 hours! For shame!

Where were you? (don't answer me).

What were you doing?(definitely don't answer me). unsure.gif

 

But you cannot leave a kiln unattended! When you open the kiln you will learn alot one way or another.

What ever the results will be, be sure to keep a firing log.

 

Take a picture if you can; if it is a disaster or otherwise and post it to encourage others to be present during kiln shut off or to let us see what a ten hour overfire can do..

 

If you had been a student of mine I wouldn't have been so light hearted about this. Your kiln is your most important piece of studio equipment don't ever take it lightly.

 

 

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teardrop    2

It's funny how differently instructors/artists/potters (anyone I missed?) approach things.

 

Our electric kilns at the college are always fired and left overnight...by the instructor herself. The only kiln that is pysically monitored and logged is the big gas kiln outside where pyrometric cones are used and each person in charge has a different theory on reduction and how it should be done. LOL.

 

As someone who is also only 6 months into this...I hope yer peices come out OK grayfree!

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grayfree    3

Well I will say where I was.......was sleeping!! I checked the kiln at 8:00 this morning but still didn't realize it was still firing. I thought it was just cooling down. It wasn't until I checked it at 10:30 did I realize that it was still clicking and firing. I am not how I programed it wrong because I did put the numbers for the hold on the right of the decimal but alas it is what it is and we will see.......I will probably wait up till about midnight tonight when it should be cool enough to open.........Not sure if I should take plugs out and let that help speed up cool down or just wait as the usual cool down happens......

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Dinah    6

Yes, I must backup some of the admonishing replies here. Don't leave your kiln at the end of a firing. Read your manual again. Don't take plugs out. Leave it to cool down to about 93 d C. Don't know Farenheit don't use it in my firings. I think checking the kiln using witness cones and proper peep-hole procedures would assist you. Just think of folks who fire reduction and have to turn out regularly during a firing day and night to check on the progress of the firing. Did you place witness conepacks in the kiln? Should do each and every firing. Without fail. And when I come into to check on a firing I stick around to observe digital readout behaviour and check the witness cones. Belt and braces. Anguish and worry is good. Makes you a better potter. People who have others fire their work for them don't know the meaning of what you're going through.

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grayfree    3

No of course I didn't use witness cones I am a new potter. It's not like I would know what to do with the results of the cones anyway. HAHAHAHA. How do you see in the peep holes...it is dark in there? I haven't used the cones honestly because I planned to start using cones once I learned and understood more about the adjustments on my kiln and what I want to adjust. I have been more focused on trying to get my stuff centered, stop the cracking ......my glazes to look decent. I was depending on a new kiln to do what it is suppose to do. I use the preprogrammed fast or slow glaze program so the only thing I have added was a preheat for bisque firing or hold time. Boy I feel like I have had my hand spanked, just wanted a little encouragment that maybe things will be OK......

Now I know what my daughter feels like when she called after making a mistake and I would fuss about why she should have known better. Wish I would have just held her hand and told her it would be OK no matter what......LOL.

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Chris Campbell    1,086

Well, the next time someone asks you about firing a kiln I am sure you will emphasize certain things a little more than you would have done last week.

Truth be told, we have all made this level of error and lived to tell the tale ... You didn't mess up someone's brain surgery or wreck the car. It's a kiln load of clay. Some wasted electricity. You will no doubt pay for your error by having some serious shelf scraping to do. Lesson learned and move on to the next mistake.

Truth again ... Been at it twenty five years and in that time have overtired, underfired, glazed with the wrong cone of glaze, left out witness cones by mistake, forgotten to start the kiln, forgotten to be there at the end ... It's called being human. Stuff happens. Just keep moving forward and learn as you go.

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teardrop    2

Pullin' for ya. No criticisms here.

 

Who knows...maybe you'll create a new firing technique and all of these folks whappin on yer knuckles with the teacher's ruler will be dropping yer name in an attempt to impress other potters @ some point in time. laugh.gif Remember.....everyone starts somewhere....and it's never the same place.

 

Follow the manual's advice...wait til the temp hits 250F...then grab some insulated gloves and tear into it

 

good luck. Don't let em bring ya down.

 

 

 

 

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grayfree    3

Chris thanks for the encouragement and you too teardrop. Will open about 11pm and will let you know! You know what is funny is that I used to do brain surgery....I was an assitant to a neurosurgeon for 11 years. I have wrecked my car a number of times also.....Chris I live in Morehead City and have family in Raleigh do you have a store there?? I would love to come by sometime and see your work if you do.

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Peter    0

No of course I didn't use witness cones I am a new potter. It's not like I would know what to do with the results of the cones anyway. HAHAHAHA. How do you see in the peep holes...it is dark in there? I haven't used the cones honestly because I planned to start using cones once I learned and understood more about the adjustments on my kiln and what I want to adjust. I have been more focused on trying to get my stuff centered, stop the cracking ......my glazes to look decent. I was depending on a new kiln to do what it is suppose to do. I use the preprogrammed fast or slow glaze program so the only thing I have added was a preheat for bisque firing or hold time. Boy I feel like I have had my hand spanked, just wanted a little encouragment that maybe things will be OK......

Now I know what my daughter feels like when she called after making a mistake and I would fuss about why she should have known better. Wish I would have just held her hand and told her it would be OK no matter what......LOL.

 

Oh, that learning curve's a b....! I do so admire your sense of humour and applaud your resolve to remain hopeful during all the waiting involved...

We've all done things that wouldn't be believed or understood by others both novice and advanced potters. You've earned your stripes and I'm sure you'll never do "that" again. This endeavour involves

countless opportunities for screw ups. Check and then recheck, practice and do as much testing as you can.

It'll fall into place and you'll look back at hurdles like this with a smile and a great story to tell..

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Pyewackette    1

No of course I didn't use witness cones I am a new potter. It's not like I would know what to do with the results of the cones anyway. HAHAHAHA. How do you see in the peep holes...it is dark in there? I haven't used the cones honestly because I planned to start using cones once I learned and understood more about the adjustments on my kiln and what I want to adjust. I have been more focused on trying to get my stuff centered, stop the cracking ......my glazes to look decent. I was depending on a new kiln to do what it is suppose to do. I use the preprogrammed fast or slow glaze program so the only thing I have added was a preheat for bisque firing or hold time. Boy I feel like I have had my hand spanked, just wanted a little encouragment that maybe things will be OK......

Now I know what my daughter feels like when she called after making a mistake and I would fuss about why she should have known better. Wish I would have just held her hand and told her it would be OK no matter what......LOL.

 

Hang in there grayfree, I doubt there's anyone on this forum who hasn't got a head-slap mistake like this in their past - possibly even RECENT past.

 

Don't take it too much to heart, but learn from it. DON'T do any more firing until you find out a bit more about your kiln and how to operate it though. For instance - peepholes. It's my understanding that you need eye protection to use the peepholes. I've seen raging arguments over whether welder's glasses offer proper protection or some other kind of lenses. In other words, I have the impression (haven't looked into it at all, no pun intended) that you should NOT be looking into those peepholes without eye protection, at least some of the time.

 

I don't have kiln yet so other than the electrical characteristics of kilns in general (as pieces of equipment) I don't know squat about actually operating them, but I have no intention of trying without getting fully educated beforehand including actual forays into the loading and programming of kilns under the supervision of someone who knows what they are about. In person.

 

DEFINITELY you need to educate yourself before trying this again, K? Not trying to beat you about the head and neck with it, but this is a high-tech piece of equipment we're talking about, with a lot of power and as much potential for disaster as it has for utility.

 

Whatever useful resources people can suggest for you, I'll need as well. Knowing the basics of how kilns function electrically doesn't give me any special insight into their actual operation at all.

 

"I don't need you to remind me of my age. I have a bladder to do that for me."

-- Stephen Fry

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grayfree    3

Well iti s 12:20 and I just opened the kiln........TADA no puddles....no sticking to the shelves......but all peices except 2 ruined with yuk colors. one chip and dip fully cracked all the way across bottom..had one really cute little saucer and my first great batter bowl turned out ok. batter bowl ` is no where near color it should be mostly graded shades of brown but looks nice......Overall I am so greatful I didn't ruin my kiln furniture or my kiln. Thanks to a for your support will try to upload pictures tomorrow for those interested. nite all

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MoKa Kath    0

Glad to hear no major disasters! I am just about to order my first kiln and will take your experience as an advisory! I'll also be ordering cones and peephole glasses with my kiln now!

 

Looking forward to seeing your photos. :)

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minspargal    3

Thank goodness you didn't have to scrape shelves or ruin your kiln. I always keep a log of every firing and how full the kiln was so i have an idea of how long the firing will be. I once was firing some tiles and when i went to check if the kiln had turn off, it was still going and i had to manually shut it off because when i looked in the peep holes at my cones they were down. Turned out the kiln sitter got stuck, the kiln was 40 yrs old. We all make mistakes, just hang in there. When you set up your witness cones make sure you set them where you can see them thru the peep holes. And don't worry, when 06 cones start bending, it's pretty bright in there and do wear eye protection!

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Pres    896

Well here are the pics......it was a small load thank goodness!!!

 

 

Whoa. .. . let me get your time frame straight, and some of the particulars of this firing. 1) does you kiln use a kiln setter, that you put a cone 6 cone in? 2) you turned the kiln off at 10:30 (am?)and opened it at 12:30(pm?). You used a runny glaze on the top edge of the pot, and other cone 6 glazes on the rest.

 

My comments:

On 1-when looking at the kiln setter-what is the appearance of the cone 6 cone? Is it bent, or melted to the brackets etc? 2) Opening a kiln with only 2 hrs of cool down time is detrimental not only to your ware, but the kiln itself. At the same time, because you have an L&L you may damage the element holders by opening the kiln too quickly. 3) If the setter kiln was not melted then you had a nearly normal firing. Your glazes look a little overfired, but then that may be the colors. I did notice some blistering on the outside of the batter bowl that usually indicates some form of firing problem. These could be form unpopped gas pockets from the clay body due to the over fire.

 

We all have been here. Back in the 90's When running consecutive firings, I overslept. leaving a kiln on high for 6 hrs. longer than than required. The pots all came out dark brown and bloated. None of them stuck to the shelf, none slumped so much as to touch others. My glazing and preliminary cleanup of shelves and pot bottoms ensured that even though I was over exhausted and lost a load, I didn't lose a kiln. Big lesson! I fire without a kiln setter, in an L&L. Everything I do with the kiln is manual. In my younger days that was OK, but now that digital control is out there and works well, I long to upgrade to that set up. Even then, I will be like a mother hen over a kiln, but will have a back up incase I oversleep.

 

For those of you that don't work in a HS environment: I also fired kilns for years in HS with a kiln setter. I know the standard admonishment that the kilns have to be watched all through the process-however, sometimes that is not possible. I would often start a firing on low the night before, water smoking the kiln til morning, put down the lid, 2 hrs later start turning the kiln up. Usually the bisque was not done when school was over at 3pm. Usually at 4pm it would still be firing, and would shut down between 4-5. This sort of thing was usually after the elements were in for a year or two. A glaze would start in the morning and not end until 6 at night, if I got it loaded the night before. If not, sometimes it did not shut off until 10 or 11 at night. Most time I was at school when the kiln shut off, but often it was too late for me to stay. As I did sets for the drama club, many nights I did not leave school until 10pm. Get up the next morning and do it all over again.

 

The last year I worked one month before retiring the dr. diagnosed me with T2 diabetes. No family history, not overweight, no other risk factors- Dr. believes I wore myself out! Now retired, no meds, diet and exercise only, BG numbers are normal-for now. So be careful folks!

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grayfree    3

Pres I have a digital dynacontrol so you just program it for fast glaze or slow glaze and then any hold you want to add. I turned the kiln on at around 6 PM I checked it the next morning around 8am (at which time I didn't realize it was still firing....just wasnt thinking I guess) and then again at 10:30 AM that is when I shut it off after figuring out what I had done and that it was still firing. It cooled down until around midnight last night ....that is when I opened it. I cant get the rest of the pictures to load but I had one nice red saucer with some breaking of blue around the edge that was a dark red I had and put lusturous jade on edge. the little green saucer in the picure was waxy white covered in lusturous jade the my other peices where suppose to be golden rod chino and cedar chino......all that is a yuk brown. the batter bowl was firebrick with lusturous jade on lip.

All in all I will triple check all settings from now on and I guess buy some cones. Although cones would not have changed the outcome. I will get some goggles and get brave and peep in once in a while. thanks to all who have responded.

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teardrop    2

Tha lack of use of cones and the mistake in programming that led him to this predicament led me to believe that our friend grayfree was using the digital control exclusively to fire his work. This is how it is done at the college i attend as well. No cones are used in the small (digitally controlled) kilns unless a firing has gone awry (hasn't happened) or a test of the cone temps seems in order. Other than that, it's a >hit the Slow Bisque or Slow glaze button< kinda deal...and the pre-programmed menu runs through and completes the cycle "as programmed". the addition of an extra step was where it went wrong for grayfree. IMO. Had he just went for the slow glaze on cone 6 things would have been AOK.

 

glad ya didn't find a huge mess or any serious damage, grayfree.

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teardrop    2

your on the money teardrop your only booboo is that i am a girl.

 

 

It's that "Net" thing again. grayfree! Thanks for cluing me in.

 

be safe, be well

 

teardrop

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