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Member Since 12 Oct 2012
Offline Last Active Yesterday, 08:50 PM

Posts I've Made

In Topic: Wood-Fired Turbo Kiln

Yesterday, 10:27 AM

Thanks guys. Our group is currently engaged in a pretty intense discussion about what we want here... whether it's simply a platform for hi-fire reduction firing (in which case- maybe we should just invest in a gas kiln) or whether we want to experiment with alternate surfaces.


These are really helpful suggestions.

In Topic: Wood-Fired Turbo Kiln

27 August 2014 - 04:15 PM


John Theis and Bill VanGilder build a manabigama wood fire kiln. Fires in one day to cone 12 using half cord of wood. Here is link: http://www.monocacyp...com/default.htm


If you read the description of the kiln, it ways that only the front portion of the kiln gives heavy ash effects. The back half is used for glazed ware. This is why most tube kilns fire for a long time- it takes a lot of back stoking to build up ash. Just getting to temperature is easy. It takes time to get ash effects. Even train kilns, which are quite efficient by comparison, require 2-3 day firings for the back half to get ash effects.



This might not be a bad thing, in point of fact... some people might be interested in using the kiln for hi-fire reduction alone.


The cross draft kiln you describe sounds like on option we should look into, however.

In Topic: Wood-Fired Turbo Kiln

27 August 2014 - 09:08 AM


Woodifirng in American seems to have taken on an "if it ain't an anagama, it ain't a wood kiln" tone. There are LOTS of ways to wood fire. Don't let the dominance of the anagama and the long fire crowd put you off to wood firing or convince you it is the only "real" way to woodfire. Long anagama firings are wonderful.... but there are "many ways to skin a cat" (sorry for the phrase, cat lovers wink.gif).




Rather than start a new thread, I thought I'd dove-tail on this one.


Along with a couple other MFA students, I've recently been tasked (willingly) with evaluating the feasibility of building a wood-fired kiln for our program. It's an integrated art-design program... none of the faculty on staff currently have ceramics as a primary focus (although several work in clay as part of their oeuvre).


So- we'd like to research and build something within the following constraints...


1) Feasible for a group with some entry-level knowledge of kiln materials and construction (we've all participated in re-wiring and replacing components on gas-fired and electric kilns)... but no background in building wood-fired kilns.


2) Ideally- something that can be fired in a manner conducive to regular participation by undergrads... so maybe not a multi-day anagama-style design.


3) Ideally- something that wouldn't totally break the bank. (Although the program has funds for this, and we're willing to fund-raise externally).


Anyhow, I was curious as to whether anyone had built or fired with the Manabigama design that bciskpottery cites above? The extensive, repeated validation of this design, along with complete schematics available for purchase, is pretty appealing... as is the short firing cycle.


Do people have alternative suggestions?


(We'll be researching this over the next year- probably looking to initiate construction in 2016).

In Topic: Do You Have Any Big Goals For This Fall's Production?

21 August 2014 - 01:33 PM

Well... not exactly immediate professional goals... but I'm starting an MFA, so I need to develop some clear project directions. Here are two things I plan to explore this fall.


1) Fountains. I've been building ceramic water features for awhile... but they're constrained by the limits of clay. I'm really interested in using metal armature and multiple ceramic sections to build some larger pieces.


2) Biosculpture. My original background is in biology... and I'm curious about the whole realm of bio-sculpture (sculptural projects that are integral parts of natural habitats). I'm considering building some larger ceramic pieces that play an ecosystem service function- for instance, water filtration. Sort of akin to what Jackie Brookner does with her projects... but using clay.


It's an 'Integrated Art and Design' program... so the focus is more on working across media to communicate. However, I plan to remain rooted in clay. Should be an interesting journey.

In Topic: Parts For Hurricane Lamps

21 August 2014 - 12:56 PM

Tracy- I've used 'MyLampParts' for parts for some of the hanging lanterns I make. They're pretty well stocked- might be worth checking out.