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Kiln question


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No you don't. But not for the same reasons. Tell me if you had a car in the garage that hadn't been driven in the same amount of time, or an electrical drill, table saw, coffee pot, a toaster even, wouldn't you want to at least 'rev' it up to see if still works?

The changes in atmosphere, dust, humidity, little animals nibbling at wires, corrosion and 'stuff' happens. Why don't you want to test it? Don't forget to vacuum it out first.

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Hi Ayjay,


After I bought, transported, and assembled my slightly used kiln, I put it through a ^04 test fire (medium rate) with furniture only.


I had cones on three levels to check temps.


Good luck.





Thanks Mark, sounds like a good plan, I've relied (successfully so far) on the controller attached to my old kiln for an accurate temperature, but I have some cones and it won't hurt to check it out, (and start to use cones regularly).:blink:

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Hi Ayjay,


Years ago we purchased a new electric kiln for our college pottery studio. It had a kilnsitter for automatic firing to the desired cone. We were excited to use it and so loaded it up for it's first bisque. The next morning we came in to discover that the kiln had still not yet fired off and was white hot inside. We turned it off and waited for it to cool. The kiln sitter plate had not been properly adjusted when installed at the factory and consequently it malfunctioned, overfiring the load. It fired so hot that the refractory cement between the bricks of the kiln lid vitrified. When I called the mfg. their first question was "Did you do a test firing as instructed in the owner's manual?" Enough said.



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Hah, a place I know of learned the hard way, too. They had an non-kiln electrician

replace elements and possibly thermocouples, and then used the digital controller

to fire. I've never seen IFB melted and shrunken before. What a waste.


I would definitely pop in frequently during at least the first firing to make sure

nothing too unexpected is happening. If you've never fired before, it's educational

to see the whole process - color changes, odors, etc. You can start your kiln

log and observations, too. Watching the cones will let you stop an overfiring

before catastrophe. If you happen to have any cones that mature at lower than

the temp you want, you can put some in (with an appropriate cookie underneath

if you expect them to melt) to help you track intermediate stages.



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