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Bisque Blowouts

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You need to be there for a whole firing to hear when they POP. Then you'll know where to be slower.

Put one or two of your pieces that can be sacrificed into her regular firing and listen.

Sounds like the "energy regulator" is a numbered dial.??


I think your pots might not be as dry (or as thinly made) as hers, but I agree that cracking the lid during the "candling" (regulator on 1) couldn't hurt. In my experience, blow-ups like that are from water leaving the pot rapidly, like right after it is turned up.

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Sounds like the "energy regulator" is an infinite switch. Any ideas how hot the overnight on #1 candling is? To start with I would increase the time spent on 2 if she is skipping the overnight candling.


Also, it would be a pain but you could make sure your pots were dry by putting them in your home oven overnight at around 185 with a knife blade holding the door open just a fraction.


I wouldn't take the plugs out at 400C on the cool down, safer for the furniture and the pots to wait until around 400F (approx 200C). I don't think that is causing the explosions though, just adding a thought here.

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"2)Leave the bung out of the door and chimney. Set energy regulator on no. 1 and leave overnight "


It looks like she does candle overnite, but (... it has a chimney? Vent?) I would still crack the door.


And listen! :)


actually not sure about that, from MMead's first para " I think she totally skips the warm up on setting 1."

if no vent then totally agree about cracking the lid.

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An update.  I did speak with my friend and she was shocked - of course she doesn't candle or even use setting 1.  Just goes straight to setting 2 for 2 hours.  


Further info: Th local Kiln builder came to have a look why my kiln isn't working.  A switch was blown and some wires wrongly connected at the back.  Now getting sorted so my kiln should work by next week.


The "energy regulator" is a dialed switch 1-6 and the man told me it's like the dial on the stove top.  1-2 is low/simmer  3-4 med heat and 5-6 "high"  Remember I'm in South Africa so our everything is limited.  Many first world aspects and so so many third world glitches.


Thank you all so very much for helping me work out this mystery :)

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Yes the energy regulator, I have one, is like the dial on an oven, what is missing in this set up is a pyrometer, thermocouple and cones!!!

One can get accurate  ish with experience and keeping a log of each firing coupled with the additions I mentioned. If it is on 1 overnight  that is one thing, but we don't know the temp rise for the first hour or two on that overnight stint.  could be disasterous. Going to 2 after an overnight on one seems reasonable provided the kiln temp rise equates with what the clay can handle..... i nurse carefully till around 600deg.C, like 100deg/hr depending on the clay and ware.then up it goes ..

Can't assume 1 is going to be slow enough because it has an overnight stand. THe first hours are crucial, may have to go to .5 with lid cracked.

The colour of interior is an good indication too

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