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  2. Our saying in the late 80’s and 90’s for IAQ::The solution to pollution is dilution .......... with, outdoor air of course. That was great until humidity levels became excessive beyond the reasonable dehumidification capacity of equipment and the mold problem was born! Of course mold is everywhere, especially ........ outdoors.
  3. As far as Cone Art From an energy standpoint the insulation save money and energy, period! People arguing it,doesn’t are selling non insulated kilns. The Cone art lids are one of the best IMO and Frank Tucker is a great guy. We have five of he’s kilns each have a bit over 1000 firings on them. Euclid makes interesting kilns, some fiber some a mixture of brick and fiber and some industrial. Not sure these two compete with each other though.
  4. How about a big weed fan, 10 incher and just turn the whole studio into a wind tunnel for a bit? You don't need to worry about acid vapor, hot moist air or even ducting. Add a carbon filter on the intake and you've got even more protection. Works for me anyway! I actually cheat and have my kiln outdoors. Every chemist and engineer knows that outdoors is a magical place where fumes disperse without coaxing. Can't afford a fume Hood? No problem! Just do it outdoors! I love it! Speaking of which, i have a bunch more resin lustre experiments to conduct but its been raining cats and dogs outside and all of the ingredients used react violently with water... Dang ole magical outdoors, only makes a good fume Hood for 6 weeks out of the year here!
  5. All good points but five years would be my reasonable minimum on virtually any decent system. Fans that are corroded generally ingest far too much kiln air to makeup air. setting the home made aside for a bit if you don’t get five years out of a decent kiln system something is likely not great about the setup. So for the lifespan of a kiln vent fan I would shoot for that minimum expectation. As far as longevity, more dilution air, less heat through the fan, life is generally good. More cfm is not necessarily the answer. Starving and overheating a large fan seldom end with good results. Air changes per hour are no longer a reasonable standard. Have seen many a paint booth improperly designed and operated. Almost as many rotting kiln vents with insufficient room air. There must be a reasonable way to help the clay community. This stuff is complicated but actually relatively simple. Although I have seen many a bad HVAC design as well so maybe just too tough for many to understand.
  6. I'm talking about downdraft vent fans that were installed to manufacturer's instructions- Skutt Envirovent, L&L Vent-Sure, Orton Ventmaster, Vent -a-Kiln hoods, etc. The fans are completely corroded when they die, from the fumes and moisture from the kiln. For CeramicJim, the more clay dust he sucks through it, the shorter its lifespan. The more firings he uses it to vent, the shorter its lifespan. It could very well be that there are better ways to design the systems, but for most people that's not an option, because most people don't have a background in HVAC installation. Plus the lifespan of a vent fan is about number of firings, not number of years. If you only fire once a week, your vent system will last a lot longer than someone who fires 5 times a week.
  7. I have never tried pottery and retired , opened an antique store and now I want to try . I have found a come art kilns electric 220 that is 10 years old for 300.00. I have the wheel and a class to enroll in . Advise please !
  8. Poor design or less than good install. Seen a bunch. The ratio of room air to kiln air makes the exhaust stream super reasonable. The hours of use, not much compared to lots of fans that run 24/7. If it doesn’t last five years, start looking for why.
  9. I was referring specifically to fans used for venting kilns and studio dust, like what was described above, not ceiling fans or jet engines. If the fan was just pulling air through it I would agree that it should last a long time. But when it's pulling abrasive clay dust, moisture and fumes from the kiln, etc, it's going to affect the life of the fan. I've replaced enough kiln vent fans to know that they don't just wear out due to age. They corrode.
  10. Neil I disagree Properly designed and cooled fans are rotary devices they last a long time. The environment is usually well defined and mitigating the operation hazards by design is essential. Longevity varies due to products that are not reasonable quality, designs that create overly harsh operating conditions or lack of reasonable maintenance. Centrifugal chillers, building fans, heating unit fans, ceiling fans, exhaust fans, jet and turbofan engines are rotary devices. They last when properly designed and attended to. If you are experiencing premature failure of a fan, something is likely wrong. I have many designs in service for 20 years or more without failure or replacement.
  11. That is a great thought because there is usually a small amount of the cone stuck to the metal of the bottom two holders that I’ve had to scrape off, see photo. I couldn’t get my camera to focus properly but you can see the brown of the cone on the silver metal. I will apply some kiln wash now. The kiln does turn off when the cone breaks. I am not sure how hot it’s getting but it always happens after I turn the gauges from medium to high.
  12. Agreed. Do not use that plug. If you twisted it back, it would be in the original 20 amp position. It's not about the voltage. You cannot use a 20 amp plug in a 15 amp outlet. You should not use an adapter, either, because it would overload the circuit to run a 20 amp kiln on a 15 amp circuit.
  13. @Elise Try putting a small amount of kiln wash on the bars that the cones rests on. Just enough to make a barrier between the cone and the bars. I wonder if the cone is sticking to the metal, and snapping as it heats and expands. Does the kiln turn off when the cone breaks? How hot is it getting?
  14. I strongly recommend that you not use that plug - whether you twist it back, or not. There's a good chance that, in twisting it to its current shape, the connection between the blade of the plug, and the wires has been damaged or weakened - which could lead to arcing and overheating.
  15. I did another firing with a brand new cone 05. It snapped as well. Just like the others. So I don’t think it’s a cone issue. Such a bummer.
  16. Yesterday
  17. Since there was no recent QotW in the question pool, I will once again pose a question: What process do you use with the clay you use, including glazing and firing range? I have used several different clays over the last several decades, starting with a wide firing range clay that I fired to ^6, didn't work out too well as it never seemed to be mature. Then I went to a clay similar to the one I used in the HS, a ^5-6 clay that was quite nice, very throwable, good for handbuilding, and speckled, however mine did not speckle. This was so that I could not be accused of using school clay(watch your back). After I retired, I did use the speckled version, but stopped using it as I became concerned of the manganese in mortars, and I was getting a little bored with the clay. Next I started using a hazelnut brown and a white that both were ^5-6. I found the hazelnut great to throw with, but glazes turned out darker. Then started to glaze both with a white glaze before spraying on colored glazes over top. I find that this has allowed me to get the color to accent the textures I stamp/incise into the pot before shaping. It still seems to be a learning process as now I believe the white glazes underneath leaches color out of the sprays on top, last batch I use the white glaze only on the inside and down an inch of the white clay pieces . Asking one more time. .. . . . What process do you use with the clay you use, including glazing and firing range? best, Pres
  18. If the pots centers and throws well staright on wheelhead with NO BATS USED then its a bat issue. Try that first then you will know.
  19. Sorry that doesn't exist. Maybe something like a polymer clay would be better? Fimo and Sculpey are the major brands. What is the application you're wanting to use it for?
  20. I've had two electricians out to assess the circuitry. Either way I'm looking at $1000 of electrical work to set up for my "real" kiln. Pricey indeed!
  21. Indeed, you're going to have to hire an electrician either way unless you already have a spare 25 amp dedicated circuit. If you are planning on buying a bigger kiln in the near future you don't want to have to pay an electrician twice (they're pricy!!). If you already have a 25 amp circuit then fire away You can always use lowfire earthenware until you're ready to buy your big cone 10 kiln, this kiln will be able to do fine with low fire.
  22. You have had your first lesson in kiln ownership. I would sell this kiln and go ahead and invest in the kiln you want and get your wiring done for it. They sell really well on Craigslist in the city I live in. Denice
  23. It won't harm the kiln to fire it to cone 6, it's just that you won't get very good element life from it. Usually we fire to cone 6 in kilns that are rated to cone 10 because the elements can wear more before the kiln can't reach cone 6. If you're firing to the max of the kiln, then you have to change the elements once they wear just a little bit.
  24. Thank you Neil, That is super helpful. Since I want to do cone 5/6 work, I assumed that kiln would be fine for starting out, and I never thought it would be that harmful to max it out every time I use it. I assumed it was designed for that! I don't know it's history and since I haven't plugged it in to look at the elements I'm not even sure if they are in top shape. That's definitely something to think about.
  25. The drawing is not accurate no matter what's going on with the wheel head. A bent shaft would not allow it to happen, either.
  26. If the prong was twisted 90 degrees, then he was trying to make it fit a 15 amp outlet instead of a 20 amp outlet, not 110 to 115 volts. 20 amp outlets have one prong turned perpendicular to the other so that you can't plug a 20 amp appliance into a 15 amp outlet, because that would overload the outlet. According to the Skutt website, that kiln pulls 20 amps, which means it should actually be on a 25 amp breaker, because code requires that kiln be on a breaker that is 25% greater than the draw of the kiln. I would also put a cord on it that is rated to 30 amps. Also, according to the Skutt website, that kiln can only go to cone 6, so it's not ideal for doing cone 5/6 work. You'll be maxing it out every time you fire it, and once the elements wear even a little bit it won't get to temp.
  27. I'm moving from a community studio to a studio in my garage and I'm planning on purchasing a large kiln, however I bought a small used Skutt 614 (it's tiny) off craigslist so that I could gain some experience with kilns before making the leap to an expensive larger kiln. My problem - once I got this used little Skutt home I see that the previous owner had twisted one of the electric prongs on the plugs to make it a 110v. Tt looks like the plug is compatible with 115v.) It appears that they twisted one of the prongs 90 degrees. I've been speaking to electricians about rewiring this little kiln, but I'm wondering if I could just twist the prong back to the original 115v position and then use a proper adapter from the hardware store rather than replacing the full plug/cord. Another option is to not bother and cut my loses. The kiln cost me $100, and ultimately will be too small for what I need. But it appears to be in good shape visually otherwise. I have not plugged it in. thanks in advance! Karen
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