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woodfire raku

updated sun 20 apr 03


julene on sat 19 apr 03

My family visited the nice people at Smithe/Sharpe and purchased the 50
insulating bricks to line the glaze chamber of the woodfired raku kiln. I
also bought a pound sample of the zirconium wash for $5.00 to coat the hot
face. As yet I haven't taken it apart enough to see how it stood up to the
fire, but it did reach temperature in 3 hours instead of the 6 to 8 with the
hardbricks only. I still may change a couple minor things, but am quite
happy with this new kiln. I am now planning to build a small bourry box out
of hardbrick that has the ware chamber insulated on the outside with
possibly mineral wool. Has anyone tried this?

Against the advice of others, we were able to fire the kiln mostly with the
wood from the brush piles (brush is anything that can be broken without a
chainsaw). We did use about a half of a wheel barrow of split pine and
pallet ends along with a truckload of brush for the firing. Then I recalled
that our Wisconsin definition of a brush pile maybe different from the rest
of the worlds as we are the place were one can buy clothes to fit at the
farmstore though we usually prefer Mel's city area. One can get pants there
for $3.00 just because the brand is no longer in style.

Julene, who lives a great life in Gumpdom. Life has taught me one thing and
then showed me the other side in a kind of mixed-up karma way. For the
young people out there, some of us older clay people did try to make things
better for you. We did pay and were silenced. You need to look at the
lives of those before you, because in the end that and the pots are the
things that will last. Be sure if you give up your freedom of expression
and life for assistance, tenure and health insurance that it is worth it.