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two questions regarding wood kiln

updated mon 24 nov 97


Rafael Molina-Rodriguez (Rafael Molina-Rodriguez) on sun 23 nov 97

Clayarters :

After many delays I've virtually completed construction on our wood kiln
here at the college. It is the Peg Udall's kiln, from a Ruggles/Rankin
design, out of Jack's "Woodfired..." book. There are a couple of minor
things left which is why I'm submitting this message.

First, I've decided to construct a hinged door for the firebox. I bought
some high temp IFB's and will Sairset them together. I want to attach the
IFB's to a piece of flat 1/4" steel (the door) which will be welded to an
arm that will hinge on the kiln frame. My question is how do I attach the
IFB's to the metal? I was thinking of welding metal rods onto the flat
metal and forcing the IFB's onto it, but that doesn't seem to sturdy. I also
though of using a rectangular shaped angle iron frame instead of a sheet
of metal and mounting the IFB's to the frame. Please advise.

Second, we just received two gallons of ITC. Alice at ITC says to fire the
kiln first with shelves and then apply ITC. This seems counter intuitive. I
have two problems with that. It seems to me that firing the kiln and
exposing the hotface to the extreme heat and vapors will begin the
deterioration of the brick before I protect with the coating.

The other problem is the kiln shelves. We couldn't afford silicon carbide
so we bought Thorley's corderite high alumina shelves. I decided on the
Thorley's after consulting with Dee Buck and Gary Hatcher. They both
use Thorley's and fire to ^ 12 - ^ 13. I only plan on firing to ^ 10.

There is a significant difference in their kilns and ours. They both fire
Bourry box kilns. Our kiln has the firebox and the ware chamber under
the same arch separated by a bag wall. My point is with a kiln that will
get a significant amount of flyash it is the ash that will deteriorate the
shelves not the extreme heat and vapors. I guess I'm about to find out if
the Thorley's coated with ITC will hold up to the turbulent atmosphere of
the wood kiln.

My question is should I coat the shelves first and then fire in the wood or
should I fire the shelves in our gas kiln to ^ 10 and then coat with ITC and
fire in the wood kiln? I'm leaning toward the latter. Any suggestions will
be appreciated. TIA.