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Rick Wise

Silicon Carbide Kiln Shelves?

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Does anyone have an opinion on these new silicon carbide kiln shelves I see being advertised?  They are very expensive -- are they worth it?  My old shelves stay in bad shape and seem to always be shedding something or another onto my work or causing small cracking on the bottoms of my pots. (I know, I know -- I should do a better job with kiln wash, but I cant seem to get it done.)

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If you're talking about Advancers, I don't know of any equivalent.   They're expensive alright.  One set (4 shelves) for my kiln is $1000.  They are lighter than the cheaper silicon carbide and unlike them, they don't warp.  I only have one set, so far, for the top hard to place set.  After all, it's just money.  If you're kiln is paying for them and not your rent money, it's all good.  Hope to add to my collection this year myself.

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I read through the post you linked, Mark.  One important reason to have at least one set of Advancer shelves if you are running a good size gas kiln is wear and tear on the potter.  My kiln inside height is 48" and front to back is 36".  You might be able to get the top back shelf in place (over a lot of easily breakable pots) with a 3/4" mullite shelf, but I can't .  I frequently only have a 6" gap to get the shelf in place.  Now you hold the shelf horizontally by the end.  I'd guess a 3/4" 18x18 shelf weighs 20lbs or so.  No thanks.

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(One important reason to have at least one set of Advancer shelves if you are running a good size gas kiln is wear and tear on the potter)

my car kiln holds on average 33 to 35 shelves . I used to use 1 inch dry pressed alumina shelves(12x24) as they stay flat at cone 10 for a long time-downside is they take up 1 inch of space and weigh 33#s

So on a 33 shelve load I moved 1,089#s of shells (not counting the pots) to load in then that weight again to unload . Advancers weigh 9#s so 33 of them weighs 297#s- my back really felt the difference and this was when I was in my 40s. I saved over two feet of stacking space for pots as well. It really makes sense for a potter who in it for the long haul .

Edited by Mark C.

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