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grayfree

Help KIln was set to hold for 35 hours instead of minutes

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to echo everybody but make a suggestion nobody has yet thought of. you must have gotten a manual with your new kiln, so CALL the telephone number listed on your kiln manual and discuss this with the expert at L&L. you did not say it was a hold time at the end of the firing, but everyone is assuming that is the case. my L&L has several options to enter hold times. i am also assuming you meant the hold at top temperature at the end of the firing and not the one to preheat and dry the ware before firing. the man at L&L is a lifesaver, well, at least a potsaver. he is very knowledgable and kind. he can help you understand what happened.

 

there is one other thing you might do. i know i am old and do things in a way youngsters scoff at, but try going to your local library and READING all the pottery books you can BEFORE your next firing. some of the OLD ones that tell you lots of info about the process of making pottery, not the flashy new ones about how to do a particular style or shape. this field is a constant learning opportunity for anyone who asks questions like how, why and what can i do now. after 35 years i have more questions every day.

 

your batter bowl looks very nice. you have a right to be proud of it.

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thanks oldlady I did just that and a nice man called me back. we had a chat about how to enter the numbers. I read everyday about pottery mostly on the internet. I have a book or two and have ordered more. I will continue.

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thanks oldlady I did just that and a nice man called me back. we had a chat about how to enter the numbers. I read everyday about pottery mostly on the internet. I have a book or two and have ordered more. I will continue.

 

 

My experience is with the larger kilns, and some what older, they had a kiln setter and the programmed controller. Sorry about that, your time line also through me off without the mention of am or pm. I am sure that you have learned a valuable lesson that you won't repeat. It is lucky that nothing was really damage other than a few pots. Having to replace floor or elements or even element holders is a pain. Good Luck!

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I cant get the rest of the pics to load but you get the jest of the colors they are all about the same yuk brown.

 

 

 

Your pieces are pretty! I'm glad you didn't have a total kiln melt-down. smile.gif As a newbie myself, I feel I should relate a kind of funny kiln story. I have a used electric kiln (Paragon octagonal) that has a kiln sitter that has worked just fine. I'd toyed with the idea of getting a pyrometer because it was old, but hadn't. It fired just fine at cone 6 and seemed pretty reliable. I'd tracked the time it took for the kiln sitter to flip and it had been about 6 hours. In warm weather. For my latest firing I woke up in the middle of the night 8 hours after starting the firing (sorry, but it was the middle of the night) and it was still going. I panicked and stopped the firing, fearing that everything had been overfired. It turns out that it didn't reach cone 6 and the glazes were very weird. It was in December--I suppose the ambient temperature in my cold garage affected the firing time? I don't know! Anyway, I refired the pieces and they turned out just fine. I look forward to the experienced potters' comments. Would a pyrometer help?

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I discovered I set it to hold 35 hours instead of minutes. I have cut it off now and it probably held about 10 hours.

 

 

It is a good idea to check Program Review every time when you are ready to start your kiln. As you watch the program in the display window, compare it with a written record of your firing. As you found out, it is easy to enter 35 hours instead of 35 minutes!

 

"The Checklist Manifesto: How to Get Things Right," by Dr. Atil Gawande looks like an interesting book. I haven't read it yet, but it pertains to this subject. According to reviews, the theme of the book is that it is easy to make a mistake by forgetting one little step. This is why pilots use checklists before they fly a plane. Has anyone here read the book?

 

Sincerely,

 

Arnold Howard

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

ahoward@paragonweb.com / www.paragonweb.com

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It turns out that it didn't reach cone 6 and the glazes were very weird. It was in December--I suppose the ambient temperature in my cold garage affected the firing time? I don't know! Anyway, I refired the pieces and they turned out just fine. I look forward to the experienced potters' comments. Would a pyrometer help?

 

 

A pyrometer would certainly help in tracking the progress of your firing. With experience, you can also tell the temperature by the color of light around the edge of the lid. I would be surprised if cold weather slowed down the firing significantly.

 

Sincerely,

 

Arnold Howard

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

ahoward@paragonweb.com / www.paragonweb.com

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I just started firing bisque pieces with a small paragon. My new Skutt KM818 just arrived & is waiting to be wired. I'm scared to death to leave it unattended at the end of the firing - just wouldn't, but that's me. I read the manufacturer's instructions & the horrors of why not to leave it unattended & to definitely use cones. Not beating you up at all, but just saying I wouldn't. LOL! Your pieces that I saw are lovely by the way.

 

So you don't feel too bad about making a mistake though, here's the stupid thing I did.

 

I threw a bowl for the dogs. It was nearly a disaster at the throwing wheel, but I managed to trim it into a really cute bowl & save it. I just could NOT make myself wait that extra day to make sure it was completely dry (it had a thick bottom.) I knew better, but I wanted to get the firing done before the holiday, so I went ahead. Well, everyone knows the result - it exploded, & blew off the side of another piece in the kiln. I guess I just HAD to experience the sound of that explosion to be satisfied that it would indeed happen to greenware not completely dry.

 

When I heard the explosion & saw the dust come out the vents in the controller, though, I did panic. It was not a pretty picture when I opened the lid, but one I will never forget. The destruction to the bowl was total!!! I'm not saying it won't ever happen again, but it WON"T happen again because I hurried the clay! Lesson learned & I seem to learn a lot of them the hard way. LOL!

 

Mary

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Not bad...but then I like brown. What glaze is on the brown pieces? You are doing extremely well for 6 months into it. I must admit, I am quite surprised that you are already firing on your own. I am 2 years into it and just now thinking about a kiln, but feel like I need lots more information before I start that. Did other people take some time before they started firing their own pieces, or am I just a slow learner?

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Mary that is funny the way you tell it. Of course I have done that too. I made a beautiful large pedistal fruit bowl and to this day dont know how I did that. I put handles on each side and everything and then I made another big bowl thing for baking bread in. They had dried I thought for about 2 weeks and seemed dry to me so in they went and kaboom they went! Glad I didn't hear the boom or I would have been terrified! Cleaned up just fine and moved on. Now I learned from someone who does sculpture to do a preheat of 12 hours before bisquing and that is what I do whether I need to or not HAHHAHAHA.

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Flowerdry I just jumped right into to all of it. Took one class at the community college 1 night a week for 8 weeks then bought a wheel and set up my studio. Took the class a second time and now I am on my own waiting for another guy in town to get his studio up and going for classes. He will do some intermediate classes and individual classes. Thanks for the compliments..... It is not suppose to be a brown glaze I used amaco's firebrick and lusturous jade on the lip I should come out deep burgandy and blue.....

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Thanks for your reply, Grayfree. I have been taking the same 6 wk pottery course over and over again at my local community arts center, so I have seen a lot of people in the beginning stages of learning to throw. I can tell you that you are doing extremely well for the amount of time you've been learning. And you are very brave to jump right in there. Happy potting!

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I cant get the rest of the pics to load but you get the jest of the colors they are all about the same yuk brown.

 

 

Well the "yuk" brown actually looks pretty ok colorwise, but I think I see signs of pinholing? pits? blisters?

 

It might not be the color you wanted but it's not awful either. Any pinholing/pitting/blistering/flaking or otherwise messed up glaze qualities could be a problem however.

 

How might overfiring affect food-safety?

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Holy giant jpegs Batman.

 

I have to say I disagree with you about the yuck brown part. You've got some amazing color going on there. You're also very lucky that your clay and glaze both held up to the extended firing.

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I think the plate with the crack may have cracked because of uneven thickness, or how it was dried or maybe got too much water when thrown. Plates need to dry slowly. I flip them every day as they dry.

Just a suggestion.

Marcia

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Marcia you are probably right.....It had a tiny crack before I glaze fired I was trying to hide it with the dip bowl. the smaller bowl in the pic also has a crack and bowl with the fish......I have another whole thread addressing s cracks which have been my nemesis. I have gotten lots of great advice and am trying some new things....... I think keeping my platters and bowls covered is where I have messed up.......I am working on more even bottoms and sides and my compressing techniques.

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Hi Grayfree! So glad your bowls did not just end up a pile of dust or worse yet, a very large pancake looking thing. I noticed in one of your threads that you say: "Now I learned from someone who does sculpture to do a preheat of 12 hours before bisquing and that is what I do whether I need to or not HAHHAHAHA" Let me ask you, that WAS a joke WASN'T it? lordy I hope so. I really do love the colors that the glazes came out to. I've had problems w/Firebrick, and wish that my "problems" turned out as nice as yours! Congrats on only doing this for a few months. I'm 5 years into it and like you, jumped in head first. After 2 courses at the local community college, I went out bought a wheel and a kiln and set up shop in my basement. Liked the community thing but found it better for my own purposes to go solo and set up things at home. Good luck to you and as a well known video/youtube potter says: "Keep Practicing"!

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Hi All, I'm Jillene. Not many potters here are talking about the use of a pyrometer for temperature readings during and after your firing cycles. I learned I can not live with out mine!

Especially during cool down...my big beginner mistake was my impatience. By opening the kiln too soon my ware went through thermal shock, cracking body walls immediately and consequently

costing me a huge loss of time, and income. I sobbed my eyes out.

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Even though the colors of the vessels aren't what you expected or what you wanted, I think these pieces are wonderful. They remind me of 17th Century Stoneware.

 

It could be considered a successful firing in a potentially disastrous situation.

 

Thank God. You only have a few wasters.

 

A better firing schedule maybe helpful for you, scheduling shut off before bedtime and allow cool off overnight. Set an alarm to alert you for shut off just in case you may have to do it manually. Whew!

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gray free and others,

There is a limit to the amount of images and size of that you can use on your messages. You are not so limited in the gallery. That it why it may be better to use the gallery to post images and refer to a link to see them.Also, it would be nice if people posted info about themselves with a picture of sorts on you page.

just thought I'd remind folks how this is set up.

Glad your fired work looks so good especially when you think of the alternate possibilities.

marcia

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Just want to say how helpful this site is! I tried a new firing method today and set my L&L to fire to cone 5 with a 5 minute hold. (cones show kiln fires cone 6 a little hot. Cone 7 bends but I didn't feel comfortable doing a cone offset.) I was there to see the display show the start of the hold. My kiln is in a shed so I went back into the house to do some chores. In the back of my mind I remembered this discussion and went back out to make sure everything was going according to plan. Imagine my surprise to see that the temp was still on hold after 20minutes. I had keyed in 5 hours not 5 minutes! I quickly turned off the kiln. Thanks to you all for stressing that you need to be around to check on a firing even with the automated controls and thanks to all who share their experiences good and bad.

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Good morning Everyone,

 

Greyfree, I'm so happy that you didn't have a complete disaster in the kiln! Don't take the hand slapping to heart, no matter how experienced and skilled someone is, we've all made mistakes in the process of

getting there. Keep working at it, don't give up, and I look forward to seeing more images of your work.

 

Jeri Lynne

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