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'nother: used kiln, kiln clamps

updated sun 4 apr 99


Vince Pitelka on fri 2 apr 99

>I have a kiln that never had a stainless or other jacket but was banded with
>springs holding the bands in place.Well the bands all gave out recently and
>even tho the kiln elements are fine it is held together by a kiss and promise
>and I am wondering if anyone has this project behind them.I do not wish to
>replace the elements and must tie it together somehow.Any suggestions?It is
>either a Cress or Jenkin,I'll have to move it to tell and don't want to touch
>it until I figure it out.It is 23"wide x 24"high with a kiln sitter but no
>other "MODERN DEVICES".I am wondering if I should put a "blanket" around it
>before tying it back together.

Margaret -
This is an easy fix, but don't bother with the springs. Go to an industrial
automotive supplier, such as one which sells truck parts, and buy the
largest hose clamps they have. They will probably be about 10" in diameter,
and when you unscrew them completely they will open up to considerable
length. Connect enough of them end-to-end to reach all the way around your
kiln. Get enough of them to make as many complete clamps as you need for
your kiln.

As you may know, most toploader electric kilns use opened hose clamps, spot
welded to the stainless steel jacket, to provide the tension on the jacket.
If you ever need to replace one of these, take a pair of sheet metal shears
and cut open a standard automotive hose clamp (they are all stainless steel)
in the part of the band where it is solid (without any of the slots which
allow it to screw into the clamp assembly). Straighten out the two ends, so
the stainless steel strip lays flat. Drill several holes through each of
the cut ends, and corresponding holes in your kiln jacket. Fasten it in
place with pop rivets or sheet-metal screws.

You bring up a good point about the fiber blanket. If this is a kiln you
want to keep using for a while, then you might want to consider doing this,
but if you do, you must of course encase the blanket in a sheet-metal jacket.
Good luck -
- Vince

Vince Pitelka -
Home 615/597-5376, work 615/597-6801, fax 615/597-6803
Appalachian Center for Crafts
Tennessee Technological University
1560 Craft Center Drive, Smithville TN 37166