search  current discussion  categories  forms - misc 

electric kiln lid repair

updated fri 28 feb 97


Melissa Carpenter on tue 11 feb 97

I repaired a very old very damaged lid with ceramic fiber blanket. I was
able to get another 10 years out of it with mimimal expense. First, I high
fired some clay buttons with NO glaze. The size of 50 cent piece with 2
holes (soda straw size) I think I made about 12 or 14. Then I cut the
ceramic fiber to fit the inside diameter of the kiln. (Wear a mask while
working with blankets) I drilled holes (the scary part) in the lid soft
brick spaced over the blanket. 6 or 7 holes evenly spaced over the inside
diameter. Using high temp kanthol wire I buttoned the blanket to the INSIDE
or BOTTOM of the lid. The wire goes (1) through one button on top of the lid
(2) through a hole you drilled in the soft brick then (3) through the blanket
then (4) through another button then (4) back up through the other hole of
the button back (3) through the blanket (2) the same hole in the soft brick
and (1) finally through the other hole in the top button. Pull the wire as
tight as possible and twist. Do this to each pair of remaining buttons. The
result is lid that looks upholsterd on the bottom. The only downside I found
is that you loose about an inch of vertical space on the inside of the kiln.
Small price to pay. I have even found that the top ring fired more evenly.
Very simple.

As for the banding strap. To do the above, you'll want the brick to be in
the strap as tight as possible as you will be adding some, however small,
additional weight to the lid. You might consider putting an additional 1
inch strap around the outer old strap. I would be reluctant to take off the
old strap as it might all come apart. Hope this helps.

Melissa Carpenter
Claytime Studio, PA

>The soft firebricks forming the lid of my old Cress C-20-H kiln
>have cracked fter 33 years of use so there is a risk of brick fragments
>falling on the ware during firing. The metal jacket is quite corroded, but
>looks as if it ought to hold the lid together for a while yet. Ive tried
>patching the cracks with Trowleze mortar, but they open up again. I dont
>want to have to rebuild the entire lid and i doubt if Cress still make
>them. Any suggestions wd be much appreciated.