Saturday, December 17, 2005

Kiln Building

My first Raku kiln. What a dandy. All materials used in the construction of this little kiln were either scrounged or borrowed, with the exception of the propane used to fire the kiln.

I borrowed approximately 50 hard fire brick from the University Ceramics Dept. The weed burner was borrowed from my friend John R. The 20lb. propane tank was scrounged from a gas barbeque grill. And a broken piece of kiln shelf was scrounged for my shelf. The top is a piece of ceramic fiber board that my friend John scrounged from scrap material at his place of work(a furnace/boiler A/C repair company). I cut a round flue hole in the top board and used another scrap as a damper.

I started with two pieces of kiln shelf to level the ground and to act as the floor of the kiln. I then stacked the hard fire brick in a small square on top of the kiln shelves, 7 rows high. I didn't need to but I mixed up a 50/50 batch flint and kaolin, added some water to make a mortar, and applied it to the outside of the kiln. It was actually a good idea but it was a chore to scrape and wire brush the bricks when I returned them to the college.

This is my first attempt at kiln building and I learned a great deal. It only cost 16 bucks for the propane. I like wood firing and I am going to use this kiln as a model for a wood burning kiln that can be used both for raku and stoneware. I'll add on a 36" fire box covered with either kiln shelf or fiber board and eventually use all insulated fire brick rather than hard brick.

Next kiln to be built---a Fiber lined, garbage can, Raku Kiln.

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