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Buildin' a lil Raku Kiln


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#1 StokedAboutWoodFiring

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Posted 12 April 2013 - 09:58 PM

Hey guys,

So I've come to realize I don't have enough bricks to acheive the wall thickness I need for a cone 10 salt kiln (that I was planning on building this summer). Because of this, I want to make a smaller raku kiln instead! This being said, in all of my research, I haven't found any that are made from 2300 IF bricks. Why is this? All of the ones I have seen have been made out of old barrels with fiber insulation blanket on the inside. Why are bricks not used more commonly for raku kilns? Can they be?

I'm hoping to get to ^06 or ^05 in this little guy. Will a square set up (4.5 inch thick walls of 2300 brick with a layer of insulating blanket in the inside, held together with angle iron be sufficent to fire to 1800-1900 degrees? I'm still planning on building on a poured concrete slab, with cinder blocks on top of that, with a layer or two of hard brick on top of that.... then the kiln on top of the hard brick.

Thanks,
Ryan

#2 StokedAboutWoodFiring

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Posted 12 April 2013 - 10:01 PM

I have 100-150 bricks of 2300 soft brick, and about 20-30 hard bricks. Will this be sufficient if I add the fiber blanket to the mix?

#3 Benzine

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Posted 12 April 2013 - 10:27 PM

As you said, people make Raku kilns with barrel. The ceramic fiber blanket does all the work. The barrel is just a structure, that holds up the blanket.
So, in your case, the bricks would be the structure. One of the sites, I partially based the design for my barrel Raku kiln from, also had plans for a brick Raku kiln as well.
"Anything worth believing, is worth questioning"

#4 StokedAboutWoodFiring

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Posted 12 April 2013 - 11:12 PM

Ok, awesome- Thank you!

Any chance you have a link to that site still? That sounds like it would be very helpful! Also, do any of you either have, or have links to some nice wood-firey looking raku glazes. I'm really interested in crawling white glazes and brown and red flashing colors. I'm in Wayne Higby's handbuilding class right now, at school so he's given me a handful of his handcrafted raku recipe's but I'm still on the search!

#5 Marcia Selsor

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Posted 13 April 2013 - 07:58 AM

I don't even use a barrel. I just attach 1" 8 lb. fiber to a hardware wire structure and go!
I use the bricks for the base and the first courses of the walls with the burner ports. I use a pulley system to raise the fiber light weight structure
to remove the pieces. See in my gallery.

Our raku system is really a fast firing system. Bricks absorb more heat than fiber. Therefore, fiber is faster.

Marcia

#6 neilestrick

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Posted 13 April 2013 - 08:14 AM

HERE
Neil Estrick
Kiln Repair Tech
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Owner, Neil Estrick Gallery, LLC
www.neilestrickgallery.com

neil@neilestrickgallery.com

#7 Marcia Selsor

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Posted 13 April 2013 - 10:06 AM

This is one I built in Montana. I welded this also. The frame comes apart in sections , making it portable. I like it better than opening a door and getting blasted with the heat which I consider more dangerous. The heat is not as intense with a top hat kiln because most of it stays inside the kiln as it goes up.


I have been building and firing raku kilns 45 years...prior to the accessibility of ceramic fiber. I built my first one with Paul Soldner in 1967.



http://ceramicartsda...wimage&img=2221

Marcia

#8 neilestrick

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Posted 13 April 2013 - 10:40 AM

The thing I like about the door is we only have to crack it enough to get one pot out, and the rest stay hot. We often fire a dozen pots at a time.

So, Stoked, you've got a lot of options to sort through. It'll all come down to how you like to fire and what you're comfortable with. I've even fired a raku kiln that was dry stacked IFB with a kiln shelf top and a door made of fiber on a piece of sheet steel. Not pretty, but it got hot.
Neil Estrick
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Owner, Neil Estrick Gallery, LLC
www.neilestrickgallery.com

neil@neilestrickgallery.com

#9 Marcia Selsor

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Posted 13 April 2013 - 11:34 AM

That is true. I fire a few big pieces at once and I am fast to get them out and mixed with combustables. I fire two large slabs at a time.By large I mean
24 x 20 or so. I need an easy way to remove them from the kiln and the top hat works best for me.
I have been doing these large slabs sine 1982. I first used a converted West Coast kiln with a hinged door. It was not so easy to get them out.

Marcia

#10 Marcia Selsor

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Posted 14 April 2013 - 07:26 AM

Dear Stoked,
I thought you might like this kiln.
Wood-fired Raku

Here is a not so pretty kiln but it fired like a dream with wood. 1976-1980
http://ceramicartsda...wimage&img=2514

Marcia

#11 Benzine

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Posted 14 April 2013 - 10:07 AM

Here are a couple of the sites, that I went off of for mine:

http://www.corvusmoo...id=47&Itemid=53

http://mudwerks.blog...or-dummies.html

Marcia and Neil's kilns are far superior, but I found the above sites to be great, for someone just starting out, on a limited budget.
"Anything worth believing, is worth questioning"

#12 Marcia Selsor

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Posted 14 April 2013 - 12:13 PM

Here are a couple of the sites, that I went off of for mine:

http://www.corvusmoo...id=47&Itemid=53

http://mudwerks.blog...or-dummies.html

Marcia and Neil's kilns are far superior, but I found the above sites to be great, for someone just starting out, on a limited budget.


JUST TWO NOTES:
On the garbage cans, beware of galvanized steel . The fumes from the steel are not good. zinc burns off.
On the Corvus site, the kilns are nice, but the guy isn't wearing a mask when handling the fiber. His skin (arms) should be protected as well.

Marcia




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