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Electric Kiln Firing Chamber Size

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#1 AndyL


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Posted 17 April 2010 - 08:07 PM

And the kiln planning still goes on for me. Right now I'm favoring a 23" Dia X 27" depth Firing Chamber. Seems to be a good compromise in size and turnover of firing cycles since I'll be using this kiln for bisque and glaze firing. What size kiln do you use?

#2 Denice


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Posted 17 April 2010 - 11:02 PM

Dear AndyL I use a 23"X27" Skutt but also have a 17X17X17 Paragon and a 6"X6"X6" test kiln. I use the Skutt and the test kiln the most, the Paragon is nice to have around in case I want to rush a project and don't have enough to fill the Skutt. One problem I have with the Skutt is that I can't reach the bottom and I can tell as I get older that loading and unloading for me is going to be more difficult. But if your tall muscular young man you have nothing to worry about, I'm 5'8" and 57 years old so I have a different perspective. If you get into glaze testing later the high fire test kiln is invaluable, you can make up a batch of tests and fire them the same day. Good luck with your choice.
DENICE (Wichita, KS)

#3 JBaymore



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Posted 17 April 2010 - 11:14 PM

Quite different....... 40 cubic foot gas kiln for bisque...and 5 chamber noborigama for finish firing.

Your kiln is the "restrictor plate" in the studio operation. All work must flow thru it. It determines stuff like turnaround time, nature of the firings that can actually be done, maximum scale of a single piece, firing efficiency (BTUS to the work versus BTUs to heat the kiln structure), and so on. So spend some time thinking about it before jumping in. Which it seems you are doing by asking here.

If you are kinda' new to making claywork..... a smaller kiln is likely a good idea. This gives you repeated firing experience as well as feedback on a frequent basis. If you have been doing it a long while....... then having only a smaller kiln can be a problem in getting throughput.

Each variation has its plusses and minuses. Once you decide... don't look back.....just make work. If you need to change things... you usually can find a way later. It is not usually a "life sentence".



John Baymore
Professor of Ceramics; New Hampshire Insitute of Art

Guest Professor, Wuxi Institute of Arts and Science, Yixing, China

Former President and Past President; Potters Council


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