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MollyMac

Who wants to see an explosion, look here!

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Just thought I would post a pic of my electric kiln explosion in a bisque fire! I have (had) 3 sculptures in there, ONE big one turned into a literal BOMB, ruined the other two, but NONE of the pieces you see here are from the other two, they were in tact. I just can't believe what I see! I am new and this has never happened to me. Are all explosions this violent??? Jeeeez. 

explode.JPG

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Oooof!

During college I tried to rush a bunch of work through for a upcoming show. My slightly damp cone pack blew up, and by the time I reached enough color to notice it, it was long gone. Turned kiln off and unloaded it to get all the shards out; somehow shrapnel from than cone pack made it inside of tight fitting galley style lids.

I wish someone could slow motion video record some pots during explosion because it is a force to be reckoned with.

I see you've got 3 pyrometers sticking in the side of your kiln which means you more than likely have a "PRHT" function on your kiln.....next time, PReHeaT for a few hours!

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Yep, steam powers many big things like ships and locomotives and turbines and sculpture bits of course. In our studio we have taken to letting all sculpture artist use my infrared camera  on large pieces and encouraging 4 to 6 hour preheats just to avoid the potential damage. The policy is if you blow it up, you clean it up and the other artists get to yell at you if your exploded piece ruins their work. Lots of voluntary scanning and preheats ever since.

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Just now, Bill Kielb said:

Yep, steam powers many big things like ships and locomotives and turbines and sculpture bits of course. In our studio we have taken to letting all sculpture artist use my infrared camera  on large pieces and encouraging 4 to 6 hour preheats just to avoid the potential damage. The policy is if you blow it up, you clean it up and the other artists get to yell at you if your exploded piece ruins their work. Lots of voluntary scanning and preheats ever since.

Dang. The only person I get to yell at is myself.  Luckily ive only blown one kiln load, and it blew real good.  Had a solid handle on a lidded jar and it blew up and destroyed every single piece in the kiln.  Learned my lesson that day and haven't been tempted to fire something "pretty dry" since haha

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12 hours ago, hitchmss said:

Oooof!

During college I tried to rush a bunch of work through for a upcoming show. My slightly damp cone pack blew up, and by the time I reached enough color to notice it, it was long gone. Turned kiln off and unloaded it to get all the shards out; somehow shrapnel from than cone pack made it inside of tight fitting galley style lids.

I wish someone could slow motion video record some pots during explosion because it is a force to be reckoned with.

I see you've got 3 pyrometers sticking in the side of your kiln which means you more than likely have a "PRHT" function on your kiln.....next time, PReHeaT for a few hours!

Yup, big piece was final drying in kiln for 2 weeks, forgot to preheat!!!

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13 hours ago, Mark C. said:

Use a soft brush on the end of the shop vac to get the small stuff off the elements and groves.Be super gentle.

I ordered some new attachments for my shop vac last night. Also, coughed all night from just a small clean up and not wearing a respirator!

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11 hours ago, Bill Kielb said:

Yep, steam powers many big things like ships and locomotives and turbines and sculpture bits of course. In our studio we have taken to letting all sculpture artist use my infrared camera  on large pieces and encouraging 4 to 6 hour preheats just to avoid the potential damage. The policy is if you blow it up, you clean it up and the other artists get to yell at you if your exploded piece ruins their work. Lots of voluntary scanning and preheats ever since.

When I was doing work in a class, I took it for granted that my pieces never exploded. I was a huge risk I never knew! But that proves to me how great a knowledgeable kiln person can be. Now that I have my own and am new, I'm making lots of educational mistakes! This one, NEVER AGAIN I hope. Just hope I didn't kill any of my kiln insides.

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You did a nice job on that explosion,   your kiln is probable all right.    I have actually seen worse kiln accidents, they involved firing a low fire clay at a high temperature.  Fortunately they weren't my problem I don't keep any low fire clay in my studio.  If you decide to remake this work it will be better the second time around.   Denice

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I need to renew discussion on this explosion post. I have not fired my kiln in 5 months after the first major explosion. I just did a slow bisque and it was coming down at about 600 degrees then......suddenly the error code E-26!!  I think it's a dead board from my research. My question for THIS thread is - what caused this? Explosion damage? Power Surge? I have a Bartlett V6-CF Series 700 that was new last year and only been used a handful of times so far. 

 

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I do not see e-26 in the list of potential error codes for the V6-700 so I am wondering if it could have been another error.  Lastly I thought we went through the virtues of drying and long preheats just to be cautious especially with large sculpture work.

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3 hours ago, MollyMac said:

I need to renew discussion on this explosion post. I have not fired my kiln in 5 months after the first major explosion. I just did a slow bisque and it was coming down at about 600 degrees then......suddenly the error code E-26!!  I think it's a dead board from my research. My question for THIS thread is - what caused this? Explosion damage? Power Surge? I have a Bartlett V6-CF Series 700 that was new last year and only been used a handful of times so far. 

 

 

2 hours ago, Bill Kielb said:

I do not see e-26 in the list of potential error codes for the V6-700 so I am wondering if it could have been another error.  Lastly I thought we went through the virtues of drying and long preheats just to be cautious especially with large sculpture work.

Started a new thread in the Equipment section with @MollyMacs question re E26 board failure question.

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Yup, I have the manual and it's there. It says either the TC wires are switched (which they are not) OR the board is bad. Oh yes, I have learned hard lessons about sculpture. This slow bisque was a second firing for more underglaze, nothing fancy.  Thankfully, this is still under warranty and I will contact them. It has only been fired about 6 times. One explosion which was totally my impatient fault. I had a feeling about this piece that I didn't pay attention to.  Please don't scold me, I'm new to this and trying. Thankfully I start my class at the art center in a few weeks and will be able to get some additional feedback. 

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@CactusPots

Yes sure,

Infrared camera, lots of uses.  When water evaporates it cools the area so it’s real easy to spot it. First two pictures are of a large life size soldier sculpture drying. We waited until all the water was gone to ensure this did not fracture of explode in the kiln. I think this went to cone 2 (single fire)  to preserve the color of the underglaze.  It was fired on very flat shelves well grogged at no more than 200 degrees per hour. It was too large for an electric kiln so it needed to be rolled into the gas kiln and hand fired, but we have a pretty sophisticated graphic monitor that allows the user to see the firing rate and adjust as needed.

Pictures

  • 1. Large Soldier sculpture still slightly wet ( not quite ready for kiln)
  • 2. Large Soldier sculpture very dry (ready for kiln)
  • 3. Relay terminal overheating 200+ degrees  ( time to tighten terminal)
  • 4. Cup of hot coffee, cool handle and rim, +/-88 degrees (just for fun)
  • 5. Ordinary leak in drywall (popular use)

41C61F42-C852-429F-93BD-2DBF74E1EA96.jpeg.ce2e644e5465294b954fe075e36e3419.jpeg2E90A6C9-29D9-45AF-9A19-F07D643C73D0.jpeg.bd7b13c79950e8366e67ef4055723ebb.jpegE292D772-E89F-48E4-AB40-E5D8B6F0A08C.jpeg.fbe320ee18c943d0a1fe8a98c28e0a7e.jpeg14BB062D-0AEF-4A6D-A24A-F568D826C8F5.jpeg.8d9f1e0bdf8b2fefde8d2e2ed45ac172.jpeg8CDB2B13-2730-44BB-9841-C678173AA82E.jpeg.4d01d0e6cd4e08d6beebfdda3dbd9229.jpeg

 

Edited by Bill Kielb

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27 minutes ago, curt said:

Amazing Bill and great pics!  What kind of camera, software, cost, etc if you can?   Seems like a new toy I need for my studio for sure!

@curt

This one is at least ten years old. New economy models that do more, work better 500.00 maybe. I think I paid 1500.00 for this thing long ago. It was worth it for many many uses.

software comes with it. Flir, has been in the bus. Forever. Software is good for creating reports, learning how to use it over time is most important. These days, lots of classes, certification etc..... available.

Edited by Bill Kielb

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Yes thought it might be Flir.  Was looking at them a while back.  They seem to be the most widely available in many different models.  Good to get a real user review!

I imagine I will be able to point it at myself and get some idea of whether or not I should even bother venturing into the studio...

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1 hour ago, curt said:

I imagine I will be able to point it at myself and get some idea of whether or not I should even bother venturing into the studio...

Sad but interesting true story.

Early on, many many years past now my parents both became terminally ill at similar times. There were times that they were so frustrated and worn out that they refused to have their temperature taken, just flat out refused!  I was in my early twenties so sort of powerless to scold them and force them into it.  Fortunately I have always been a temperature junkie so back in those days I used one of the first non contact thermometers to measure the back of their necks while they ate breakfast. It worked like a charm!

Man I wish I had that thing now, it looked like something out of star wars! I sure thought I had the coolest item at the time. Recently I looked online and I think I found one on Amazon for twenty bucks that lasts far more than 20 minutes on a full charge. I wish I would have saved that along with my really cool LED 7 segment calculator that had battery issues of its own, which replaced my sliderule! LOL

Late Add, got curious and found this adapter for your phone. Nearly as good as what I have, Figures!

 

2019-09-01 (9).png

Edited by Bill Kielb

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