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neilestrick

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Everything posted by neilestrick

  1. When a whole section of the kiln is out it's usually due to a dead relay. Your kiln has a couple of relays, and a couple of other timer/relay things. If there are no obvious problems with wiring, melted relays, etc, then you'll need to trace the flow of power with a meter, with the power on. That may or may not be something you're comfortable doing. If not, you could start with replacing the cheapest part and go from there. You'll need to open the box and trace the wires backwards from the elements and see what parts the power flows through back to the sitter.
  2. Clay bodies and slips are EVERYTHING in wood/salt/soda firings. All the wood firers I know test clay bodies the way most potters test glazes. I talk about this with my students a lot. Beginners have a difficult time telling the difference between an intentionally loosely thrown pot and a poorly thrown pot. As their skills increase they can tell the difference, and recognize the intent behind the technique. It's like the 'My 8 year old kid could paint that' argument. No, they could not.
  3. You can try bending the rod back. Depending how old it is, it may or may not like bending and may just break. If the end of the rod is getting thin, it would be a good idea to go ahead and just replace it. You can just replace the rod, you do not need a whole new tube. That said, see if you can get the rod out before you order one. Sometimes there's enough corrosion that the set screw won't come out, or the rod itself will be fused into the tube assembly. Sometimes a little WD-40 soak will help to loosen it up. In that case that it own't come out, you'll need a whole new tube assembly. If the
  4. I don't sell a lot of the 23T kilns any more. More often I sell the 23M or 28S. The e28S-3 is the same volume as the e23T-3, but easier to load and much better for fitting serving bowls, platters, and dinnerware.
  5. You'll just need a basic inexpensive digital multimeter that can measure Ohms (look for the little horseshoe symbol on the dial). Most meters have it. There are videos on THIS PAGE that show how to do it. Your kiln will have a different layout, but the process is the same- measure the resistance at the element connections. Ideally we need to know what the resistance is supposed to be, so hit the Paragon web site and find the wiring diagram that matches your kiln. The resistance should be listed on the diagram. If not, we can calculate the resistance based on the wattage of the kiln and how the
  6. Sounds like you might just need new elements, although even worn elements can usually get to low fire temps. Have you checked the element resistance with a meter? Also, post a pic of your control box so we can see which controls you kiln has.
  7. How have you confirmed that all the coils work- do they all glow when the kiln is on high? Have you verified with the manual that you are turning the dial to the proper setting? There are a few versions of that kiln out there and they are all slightly different in controls. Manuals for Duncan kilns can be found on the Paragon website.
  8. This is the answer that everyone is looking for. Please keep the OP in mind when answering questions, as most folks come to our forum in search of simple solutions. While we can't always provide that, we should still do our best to explain things in a concise, easy to understand manner. Many paragraphs with extensive use of trade jargon do not necessarily add clarity to this discussion.
  9. First, LT-4K is the model fo the kiln sitter shutoff device, not the model of the kiln. Look for a serial plate somewhere on the kiln. The value of each kiln will depend entirely on the condition of the kiln bricks, wiring, and elements. Duncan and Knight kilns are no longer made, however elements and most parts can be purchased through Euclids.com. L&L still has most parts for the Econo-kiln. But they are all really old kilns. If you just want to get rid of them, ask $350 each and be prepared to haggle a little.
  10. I have nothing against natural draft venting- I've used many gas kilns set up that way that worked well. I've even seen a couple of natural draft hoods over electric kilns. I just don't think a small duct over one spy hole on an electric kiln is the proper application for it. Do you mean in terms of venting? The vast majority of overhead hood kiln venting systems have electric fans, especially for large gas kilns. Like, every university kiln room.
  11. Totally missed that! So this isn't really doing anything as far as bringing air into the kiln, it's just catching whatever comes out the spy hole and not even doing a great job of that. The problem then is that the spy hole isn't the only place that fumes come out of the kiln- the lid gap will also allow leakage. I certainly wouldn't trust this system to do the job. That's probably why I have never seen a passive duct on a spy hole in 30 years of ceramics. @thiamant I'd put a fan in the window, or get a powered vent system. Either one will do a better job than the passive system. It's eas
  12. Powered vents are the norm in the US, and they only pull a very small amount of air through the kiln so they don't really affect the function of the kiln. They do have the benefit of bringing fresh air and oxygen into the kiln which increases element life and makes glazes look better. The draft of the vent also help kilns fire a little bit more evenly. I don't think anyone on this forum has a passive vent system so we won't necessarily be a lot of help with the specifics, so follow the recommendations from Nabertherm. I think my first concern would be using the correct type of ducting. Wi
  13. If you're using a brushing glaze, the hair spray may not affect the application too much. Worth testing.
  14. Some examples by my friend Doug Jeppesen: Fired on its side, with seashells on the wadding Fired with other pots wadded on top of it Juicy side facing firebox, flashing side facing flue
  15. It takes knowing your kiln. Some wood kiln designs give more ash, some less. Certain areas in the kiln will give more ash, other areas will be drier but give more flashing. There are usually hotter areas and cooler areas, too. You can also control the path of the flame via how the pots are loaded. Think of water flowing around rocks in a river. You actually need to pay attention to that in tunnel-type kilns to help force the flame down so it doesn't just run along the arch and out the flue. How you load each individual pot will also affect how it looks. Fire it upside down to get drips on the
  16. From a throwing standpoint, the bat not being centered won't matter one bit. The clay will center up on the center of the rotation regardless of there that is on the bat. The only thing that might bother you is seeing the edge of the bat not running true, but functionally it won't matter.
  17. Has the clay body passed any sort of safety certification?
  18. Iron Chromate used to be a commonly available material in ceramics. It seems to be more difficult to get nowadays, but 20 years ago it was easy to find. I used to use it to make some nice grey colors.
  19. I'm moving this post to the Marketplace section where you'll get more traffic.
  20. You can make glazes foam with the addition of silicon carbide. Use a very fine size, like 600-1000 mesh. It usually only takes about 1/4 of 1% by dry weight or less. The glaze in your picture also appears to be very fluid, so you could start by lowering the melting point of the glaze, then seeing how it behaves with the silicon carbide. Any clear glaze can be made white by the addition of zircopax/superpax (10-12%) or tin oxide (5-6%). Experiment with varying amounts of silicon carbide and different glazes.
  21. This is the first I've heard of it. Looks promising.
  22. Wood/salt/soda firings are only predictable to a degree. However, with experience and practice you can have a pretty good idea of how your pieces will look in terms of where the flashing is likely to occur and how thick the glaze will be. It's not as precise as applying a glaze in the traditional manner, but as you gain experience with a kiln of that type, the number of successful pieces will increase. Every piece is unique. It's not considered sloppy by any means, it just takes more experience to get a large percentage of successful pieces.
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