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Kiln Lid Gap Help?


grayfree

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I have an L&L kiln with a gap in the lid causing me to get an error message or the kiln to fire very slow not reaching full temp.  We have adjusted the hinge and even sanded a bit on the firebrick for a better seal.  That worked for about 3 firings then with expansion or something gap has occured again although less than originally.  My question is this......Can I buy a ceramic blanket and cute it in strips to lay around the top lip of kiln and then shut the lid to fill in the gapping spots.  Will this hold in the heat??

 

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No idea if this would work, but aren't ceramic blankets supposed to be incredibly carcinogenic and dangerous to work with? How would you prevent the fibers in the blanket from degrading and getting into your environment? Are you closing the latch at the front of the lid? With my Bailey kiln the lid rests shut, no latch, but with my l&l if If I don't close the latch the lid rests slightly open. It may be better to take the whole lid assembly off and readjust the whole thing so that it fits properly, instead of messing around with a fiber blanket that may contaminate your environment, and cause you harm.

That said, ask Neil on here, he knows L&L kilns.

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Is that casing that holds the  lid slipping down in the back?   And the kiln is just a bit above the top rim in the front?   I had this issue with a L&L and I took out the spring load bar.   Now the spring load just rests against the metal casing.    Every so often I take a large hammer and beat  the thing that holds the lid up a bit.  But I never got a firing error.     WHEN I have to change the elements, I'll move the lid up a little.    Actually I've considered taking out the spring altogether.   But it's really not a noticeable problem since I took out the spring bar.

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I bought a new gas kiln years ago, ceramic fibre blanket type, yes the dangerous stuff. On first firing the lid warped. The manufacturers were many thousands of miles away. On phoning them the advice given was to put a rock on it!!

I did and did till such time that the kiln disintegrated, not long ago in the scheme of things, ceramic fibre flaking etc. :o

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Well thank you all for the comments.  Yes I have talked with L&L today.  They say a ceramic blanket would be fine.  We will make some more adjustments and sand a few bricks here and there.  Yes I use the latch in the front also.  the gap is about 1/4 inch in 2 places, and according to l&l this could definately cause a E-1 error.  We refired the thing last night with a heavy battery sitting on the lid and it did not error out but took twelve hours to fire to Cone 5 doing a fast glaze.  It is a kiln about one year old.

A 28T with quad elements and 3 inch brick.  Will keep you posted on the firing results I pray that load did OK.  I have a lot of shows coming up.  Again thanks for all the input

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Oh Neil lid gap is on the right back side section and the left mid rim section.  we have tried adjusting the metal thing that hold the lid.  The gap now may be due to a brick that looks expanded back by the hinge so my hubby is going to sand it a little when it cools and then readjust the lid again.  Will it do damage to put a heavy object on the lid to hold it down as much as possible

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I would add that sanding down the bricks is also a bad idea. There is something out of waco and its not a sanding the bricks solution.

Forget about a weighted board as this will kill the lid.

This is where a few good photos will cure the issue-please post them before you distroy a good L&L kiln

Mark

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Well we adjusted the hinge even more.  The sanded brick was a very big help and next we will adjust the latch so as not to need the heavy object.  This produced little to very slight gap hardly measurable.  I can't go back now and get pics. The kiln fired perfectly last night.  A gap of 1/4 inch can cause an error problem due to leaking hot air and causing the kiln to heat up at less than expected in 22.5 mins according to the book.  This was certainly our experience.  All electrical stuff was checked with no problems found.  Most of the stuff we did with exception of "putting the battery on the lid"  LOL was suggested in the L&L manual including the ceramic blanket.  I can't believe if the ceramic blankets were so carcenogenic that they could even sell them on the L&L site.  They also recommended this may be a help.  Anyway thanks for all the input I think we are good now.  I wont put anything else heavy on the lid.

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I have an older L&L kiln, still fires great. It gas an external kiln comptroller I added from Orton. A year or so ago I started getting error messages that the kiln was Failing to Heat, i.e. wasn't going up fast enough. We tested elements, switches and internal relays in the controller. All checked out fine. After discussing my issue with Orton, the technician suggested that the solid state relay ( I only have one, you may have three) was probably failing at higher temperatures. I replaced it and my problems went away.

 

It was a bit frustrating to track down the problem, especially an intermittent one.

 

One side note, when I was in college many of the older kilns had big gaps in the lid yet fired just fine. You could see them glowing inside but apparently they didn't lose enough heat to keel them from reaching temperature.

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Simon leach uses ceramic blanket around the top of his kiln to seal it.   He has talked about the care you have to use when working around it (loading/unloading)  In fact he just posted a vid not to long ago about his new idea to drape plastic over the top to cut down on the amount that the blanket would get disturbed.

 

 

 

It seems to me to be a reliable way to fix sealing a kiln well if your willing to deal with some slight additional handling associated with the strip of fiber on the top.

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  • 2 years later...

Glad to hear I am not the "Lone Ranger" on this one.

I have a Cress B23H that is new-to-me and it also develops a gap on the side opposite the hinge when firing to cone 5.

I am thinking of taking the lid off and elongating the hole for the pivot screw which should allow the lid to float up as things heat up. Does this sound like a reasonable thing to do?

 

 

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Glad to hear I am not the "Lone Ranger" on this one.

I have a Cress B23H that is new-to-me and it also develops a gap on the side opposite the hinge when firing to cone 5.

I am thinking of taking the lid off and elongating the hole for the pivot screw which should allow the lid to float up as things heat up. Does this sound like a reasonable thing to do?

 

There will always be a small id gap during firings. As long as it's less than 3/16 or so I wouldn't worry about it. I would try putting a latch on the front of the lid before doing work on the hinge.

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