Hy Ginsberg on mon 6 jan 03
Somewhere in the giant mound of wood kiln related literature I've been wolfing
through, I came across the recommendation to start by excavating below the
depth to which the ground freezes, and begin the foundation, presumably with
concrete blocks, there.
I assume this must be to prevent "frost heaves," and the possible resultant
structural damage to the kiln.
So: Any thoughts? Is it really necessary? And, if so, South-Eastern Vermont?
My kiln plans are still in the obsessive daydreaming stage, but I expect to be
using mostly Insulating Firebrick (IFB), in case that's relevant...
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Tony Ferguson on mon 6 jan 03
It is not necessary to dig below the frost line--this is house building
logic. Depending on the type of kiln you plan to build, you may want to
contruct a floating concrete reinforced slab or, in the case of an anagama,
build it right into the earth such as my kiln.
On Lake Superior, where the sky meets the Lake
Stoneware, Porcelain, Raku
315 N. Lake Ave
Duluth, MN 55806
----- Original Message -----
From: "Hy Ginsberg"
Sent: Monday, January 06, 2003 12:48 PM
Subject: Wood Kiln Foundation Questions
> Hi all,
> Somewhere in the giant mound of wood kiln related literature I've been
> through, I came across the recommendation to start by excavating below the
> depth to which the ground freezes, and begin the foundation, presumably
> concrete blocks, there.
> I assume this must be to prevent "frost heaves," and the possible
> structural damage to the kiln.
> So: Any thoughts? Is it really necessary? And, if so, South-Eastern
> My kiln plans are still in the obsessive daydreaming stage, but I expect
> using mostly Insulating Firebrick (IFB), in case that's relevant...
> Hy Ginsberg
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Dean Walker on tue 7 jan 03
Hy, I am watching answers for your woodfireing questions. My neighor just
paid 2,700 dollars to have oaks and mesquite trees removed from his property.
I hauled all the wood over to my little acre and now have the same dreams you
are having. So far my experience has been limited to my two Skutts
(electric). I have enough wood here build a log cabin !! I will be pouring
over my ceramics morgue ....to read about the subject. If I find anything
worthwhile I'll submit it.
no freeze line in San Antonio, Tx
Dan Hill on tue 7 jan 03
As a builder and a potter my reccommendation for a kiln foundation in a
northern area would be as follows.
Excavate 12 to 16" in depth and 4' to 6' wider than the concrete slab will
be. Fill the excavated area with 1/2" stone and install a 4"weeper around
the perimeter with the weeper outlet draining away from the site..Compact
the area well.
Form and pour a minimum of 8" of concrete with steel mesh inbedded approx 4"
deep. Good drainage under the pad will
insure that no frost heaving will occur.
Eastern Ontario, Canada
Roger Korn on tue 7 jan 03
I'll second Dan's remarks and add that a stable foundation is especially
important when building with IFB, because these bricks will crack easily
with any settling of the foundation - the foundation needs to be very
Just a thought,
Dan Hill wrote:
>Excavate 12 to 16" in depth and 4' to 6' wider than the concrete slab will
>be. Fill the excavated area with 1/2" stone and install a 4"weeper around
>the perimeter with the weeper outlet draining away from the site..Compact
>the area well.
>Form and pour a minimum of 8" of concrete with steel mesh inbedded approx 4"
>deep. Good drainage under the pad will
>insure that no frost heaving will occur.
McKay Creek Ceramics
In AZ: PO Box 463
4215 Culpepper Ranch Rd
Rimrock, AZ 86335
In OR: PO Box 436
31330 NW Pacific Ave.
North Plains, OR 97133
503-647-5464 <-until further notice
Paul Herman on wed 8 jan 03
I believe the soil you are building on/into has a lot to do with it. If
you are building on clay, which has a tendency to heave when wet and
freezing, then you probably need a robust foundation. If, however, you
are building on soil with good drainage, you can do it right on the
Our large hardbrick kiln is built directly into the ground, and seems
fine. BUT, the soil is coarse decomposed granite sand, which will soak
up water all day long. When I moved here, Lassen County required me to
do a percolation test to determine the suitability for a septic system.
They said "Dig a posthole, keep it full of water for a day, then time
how fast it sinks in." With a full hose, running about 5 gallons per
minute, I never could fill up that hole.
Great Basin Pottery
423-725 Scott Road
Doyle, California 96109 US