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Arnold Howard

Member Since 26 May 2010
Offline Last Active Apr 14 2014 09:15 AM
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#53072 I'm A Glass Worker Buying A Ceramics/glass Kiln, And I Have A Q About Por...

Posted by Arnold Howard on 21 February 2014 - 12:21 PM

Thank you for reply! I'm limited in my choice because we're working with a 30 amp breaker and re-wiring is not currently an option. I'm not completely up on my electrical knowledge...will pulling only 20 amps mean that it'll take longer to hit max temp, or that there is a chance it will not hit it at all?

I didn't realize that glass was your primary medium. In that case, the Janus-1613 may be a better choice than the TnF- or Xpress-1613-3. At any rate, the 27-amp TnF- and Xpress-1613-3 kilns can fire on a 240 volt, 30 amp circuit. The circuit must be wired with #10 copper or heavier.

 

By the way, I hope it doesn't seem that I'm trying to sell Paragon kilns on this forum. I rarely answer posts that ask for purchasing recommendations.

 

Sincerely,

 

Arnold Howard

Paragon Industries, L.P., Mesquite, Texas USA

ahoward@paragonweb.com / www.paragonweb.com




#53052 I'm A Glass Worker Buying A Ceramics/glass Kiln, And I Have A Q About Por...

Posted by Arnold Howard on 21 February 2014 - 10:17 AM

Hi, I'm looking at either

 

http://www.clay-king...ess_11_9_3.html

 

or

 

http://www.clay-king...janus_1613.html

 

for my new studio. We have both 120 and 220 v electric with 30 amp breakers.

 

My question is: will porcelain FULLY vitrify at 2300°F (the first kiln) or 2350°F (the second)?

Thanks for considering a Paragon kiln. Of the two kilns you are looking at, I recommend the 1613, but not in the Janus series. The reason is that since you will fire porcelain, you need a high amperage kiln. The TnF-1613-3 and the Xpress-1613-3 pull 27 amps (6,400 watts). The Janus-1613 pulls only 20 amps (4,800 watts). The TnF-1613-3 was designed by Seeley during the mid-1990s. They tested literally hundreds of porcelain doll heads in the prototypes of that kiln.

 

The only difference between the TnF-1613-3 and the Xpress-1613-3 is the controller. The TnF-series controller has 12 keys, and the Xpress-series has 3 keys. The Sentry Xpress 3-key controller seems to be gaining in popularity over the Sentry 12-key controller, because the 3-key is less expensive and has most of the features of the 12-key. However, programming the 12-key is faster, because you can type the temperatures from a keypad. The temperatures in the Sentry Xpress 3-key are selected by scrolling.

 

Sincerely,

 

Arnold Howard

Paragon Industries, L.P., Mesquite, Texas USA

ahoward@paragonweb.com / www.paragonweb.com




#51709 Kiln Circuit Design.

Posted by Arnold Howard on 04 February 2014 - 10:12 AM

A loose wire connected to a relay will overheat and burn out, causing the relay to fail. When that happens, replace not only the relay but the wires that are connected to it, or at least the wire terminals. This is because once a push-on terminal becomes too hot, the terminal will lose its spring tension, resulting in a loose connection. That, in turn, will cause the new relay to fail prematurely, too.

 

From your description, an element connector is loose. That will cause the element connector to glow pink. I would replace the element connector. Make sure the new connector is tight.

 

I would not redesign the wiring in the switch box. It would be far easier to obtain the original wiring diagram and to use that as a guide. You might be able to identify the kiln from the electrical data plate or by posting a picture of your kiln.

 

Sincerely,

 

Arnold Howard

Paragon Industries, L.P., Mesquite, Texas USA

ahoward@paragonweb.com / www.paragonweb.com

 




#49885 Considering Getting My Own Kiln

Posted by Arnold Howard on 10 January 2014 - 02:01 PM

I'm considering getting my own kiln, but I know next to nothing about how to operate one, where it needs to live while not in use...nothing!  I belong to a city operated studio for a very nominal annual fee where we can have everything fired at no additional cost, so it might be difficult to justify the cost. I'd like to find a "Kilns for Dummys" type book to learn more....is there such a thing?

If you want a copy of our ceramic kiln manual, I will mail it to you. Just email your address to me. A lot of research went into the manual, and most of the information is general.

 

Sincerely,

 

Arnold Howard

Paragon Industries, L.P., Mesquite, Texas USA

ahoward@paragonweb.com / www.paragonweb.com




#42695 Help With Firing A Paragon Model Snf82 Kiln

Posted by Arnold Howard on 16 September 2013 - 12:18 PM

Mark- thank you but I actually already have that info on the service manual and kiln sitter.  That doesn't seem to help me either because it doesn't talk about the specific switches on the kiln which is what confuses me.  When I did a bisque and/or glaze fire it's only taking me 4 hours and not 8 which is why I can't figure out how to slow it down or get it to fire longer. 

I checked the SnF-82 web page. You couldn't find the answer to your question, because one of the instruction manual links at the bottom of the kiln page pointed to an out-dated manual. Sorry. I have updated the link, so it now points to the latest manual. Please see pages 13 - 15 of the following manual:

 

http://www.paragonwe...nfo.cfm?CID=148

 

Here is the updated SnF-82 kiln page:

 

http://www.paragonweb.com/SNF82.cfm

 

Sincerely,

 

Arnold Howard

 

Paragon Industries, L.P., Mesquite, Texas USA

ahoward@paragonweb.com / www.paragonweb.com




#41230 New Home "studio"

Posted by Arnold Howard on 22 August 2013 - 08:31 AM

So, I'm looking for advise about commercial glazes, firing, electric kilns etc.

For the first firing, place the shelves, posts, pyrometric witness cones, and a couple of test pieces in the kiln. Space the shelves evenly throughout the kiln with posts. I would not load the kiln with prized pieces until you are confident that the kiln will fire to your satisfaction.

 

Before you decide on firing to cone 10, make sure the kiln will actually fire that hot. Also, you may decide that cone 6 is more feasible than cone 10, because you will get more firings out of a set of elements at cone 6 than you will at cone 10.

 

Sincerely,Arnold Howard

Paragon Industries, L.P., Mesquite, Texas USA

ahoward@paragonweb.com / www.paragonweb.com




#36877 Applying Kiln Wash

Posted by Arnold Howard on 12 June 2013 - 11:04 AM

Thank you Oldlady, Mark and Pres.

Oldlady - I'm sorry I guess I typed what I knew I meant not what it sounded like? I meant the inside of the bottom of the kiln, the floor part inside where you would sit stuff on. The kiln is fairly small with a chamber about 15x23 so not sure if putting a whole shelf in there just above the bottom is feasible.


You should apply kiln wash to the kiln's firebrick bottom. Be careful not to get kiln wash into an element groove. The kiln wash should last for years and will help to protect the bottom from glaze should you ever overfire the kiln.

Sincerely,

Arnold Howard
Paragon Industries, L.P., Mesquite, Texas USA / www.twitter.com/arnoldhoward
ahoward@paragonweb.com / www.paragonweb.com


#28714 lithography decal

Posted by Arnold Howard on 31 January 2013 - 02:10 PM

Thank you Arnold I am waiting for your news ,


I wasn't clear. Sorry. I meant that if I were you, I would ask Atlas Ink. You can contact them on their website. They are very knowledgeable. They may have already produced ceramic decal ink or know if it is feasible. Silk screening can lay down a much thicker layer of ink than is possible with offset printing. Bumper stickers are generally printed by silk screen, because the thicker the layer of ink, the longer it tends to last in sunlight. A thick layer of silk screen ink would probably also fire better than a thin layer of offset ink.

Sincerely,

Arnold Howard
Paragon Industries, L.P., Mesquite, Texas USA
ahoward@paragonweb.com / www.paragonweb.com


#28669 lithography decal

Posted by Arnold Howard on 29 January 2013 - 05:55 PM

Hello
I want to know if there is a kind of ceramic offset lithography ink that can print ceramic decals by offset machine instead of current methods?


That is an interesting question. I would ask Atlas Ink in Dallas, Texas if they could make an offset ink that could print ceramic decals. Atlas is a very good ink company. We use that ink for the Paragon catalog and manuals.

Sincerely,

Arnold Howard
Paragon Industries, L.P., Mesquite, Texas USA
ahoward@paragonweb.com / www.paragonweb.com


#14031 Kiln comparisons

Posted by Arnold Howard on 23 February 2012 - 09:24 AM

Thanks Mark. I never thought about the quality of the pyrometers...but that is important to me. Do you know if the digital controllers are all made by the same manufacturing company? My husband and I have had a run of bad luck with digital controllers on everything lately, including our gas stove, furnace thermostat and eliptical machine!


Skutt, L&L, and Olympic use the Bartlett Instruments controller. Paragon uses the Orton controller. In 1987 we introduced the DTC 100 controller, which we designed. In the early 1990s we gave that technology to Bartlett Instruments. They improved upon the DTC 100 for us by adding segments and controlled cooling. We introduced their updated controller as the DTC 600, which later became the DTC 800 and DTC 1000. In 2001 we switched over the the Orton controller, which we call the Sentry.

By pyrometer, do you mean thermocouple? The S-type is the best thermocouple for potters. The thermocouple wires in the S-type are extremely thin, but as long as the thermocouple is not jarred, it will last for many years, and without temperature drift. If you bump the S-type thermocouple and break the ceramic protection tube, you will most likely destroy the thermocouple, which is quite expensive. The K-type thermocouple is standard throughout the industry because of the cost, but the S-type is far superior. It is optional on both the Orton and the newest Bartlett controllers. If you change thermocouple types, however, you must configure the controller for the new thermocouple.

Sincerely,

Arnold Howard
Paragon Industries, L.P., Mesquite, Texas USA
ahoward@paragonweb.com / www.paragonweb.com


#11409 Buying first kiln

Posted by Arnold Howard on 27 December 2011 - 02:26 PM

Also, results from glaze test firings in small kilns are likely to be different than in a larger kiln where the ramp up and cool down times/programs are entirely different. A large kiln will probably hold temp better in the middle phases of firing, also. A small kiln just doesn't have the mass to maintain even temps throughout the firing process. Which doesn't make it unusable, it just makes it perhaps problematic to do glaze test firings since conditions in a big kiln are likely to be different in ways that matter.


I agree with the above. However, you can program a small digital kiln to mimic the firing profile of a large kiln. This gives fairly close results.

http://www.paragonwe...ter.cfm?PID=348

If I were firing to cone 10 on 120 volts, I would use the Xpress-Q-11-A.

Sincerely,

Arnold Howard
Paragon Industries, L.P., Mesquite, Texas USA
ahoward@paragonweb.com / www.paragonweb.com


#10573 Self supporting cones

Posted by Arnold Howard on 28 November 2011 - 10:36 AM

I bought some Orton self supporting cones so I could see how my kiln is firing. But the box does not give any instructions about where to place the cones and if I have to use kiln wash.


I always kiln wash the surface where I place self-supporting witness cones. This is because I have seen cones stick to shelves. When you remove the cone, part of the shelf comes off with it. You may not have to kiln wash the shelf, though, if you use regular large cones and a cone plaque. Or kiln wash only a small section of the shelf for the cones.

Here is a discussion on placement of witness cones:

http://www.paragonwe...ter.cfm?PID=291

Sincerely,

Arnold Howard
Paragon Industries, L.P., Mesquite, Texas USA
ahoward@paragonweb.com / www.paragonweb.com


#5328 Does Firing An Electric Kiln With All The Plugs Damage The Elements?

Posted by Arnold Howard on 24 February 2011 - 09:30 AM

That firing an electric kiln with all theplugs in throughout the entire (cone 10) firing would damage the elements. I had never heard this before.


Elements last longer in an oxygen environment. Closing the peepholes for the entire firing would reduce the oxygen in the kiln, because the vapors from burning organics would remain inside the unvented kiln. In theory, this could reduce element life.

For best firing results, vent the kiln lid and leave out the peephole plugs at the beginning of the firing. After the venting period, insert the peephole plugs. (Leaving the top peephole plug out makes the Kiln Sitter tube last longer.) Or if you are using a downdraft vent, leave the lid closed all the way and peephole plugs inserted throughout the firing.

Sincerely,

Arnold Howard
Paragon Industries, L.P., Mesquite, Texas USA
ahoward@paragonweb.com / www.paragonweb.com