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raku kiln

updated mon 6 nov 06

 

SBRANFPOTS@aol.com on mon 1 apr 96


----------------------------Original message----------------------------

I'm going to build a garbage raku kiln and have a question regarding the
type of bricks to use for a base. Here's what I thought I'd do:
Put a layer of cinder block on top of which I'd put two to three layers
of soft insulating bricks. then the fiber lined garbage can kiln on
top. Someone thought I should use hard fire bricks since they were
cheaper. I found that soft brick was preferable but do not know why.
Does anyone know why?
ps what's sodium silicate used for when building such a kiln?
Thanks in advance for your time.

Kurt Unterschuetz

To answer Kurt's questions:
1-Cinder block makes an excellent base. Two layers of soft insulating bricks
are fine. Instead, you may want to use a layer of soft brick covered with a
layer of hard brick. The hard brick offers a more durable floor for your kiln
(glaze drips, etc.) Hard bricks are less energy efficient than soft ones
(takes longer to heat up!) Soft bricks are of course easier to cut to size if
that is a consideration. Build your burner port into the brick base not into
the side of the chamber.
2-Sodium silicate is used as a glue to attach the fiber to the sides of your
trash can.

I suggest building a wire mesh chamber instead of using the trash can. The
wire mesh is lighter in weight, and can be built to your size requirements.
Attaching the fiber is simple using nichrome or kanthal wire and ceramic or
insulating board "buttons". No need for messy sodium silicate. You can also
monitor the condition of the fiber through the mesh. Use a heavy gauge mesh
(often called hardware cloth.)

Happy raku

Steve Branfman

Keith A. Chervenak on wed 3 apr 96

Hello All!
I've been following the raku kiln thread and thought I would getin my
two cents. I'm currently building my first raku kiln and want to share my
findings over the past few months and pose a few questions. First, Steve's book
for much practical info- go buy it. I tried to use the hardware cloth
frame in order to make a wide enough kiln for my work but I was unable to
find a sturdy enough cloth in the local hardware stores. I ended up
reinforcing this lighter gauge cloth and I think this will work fine. Is
there a better resource for heavier gauge hardware cloth than the hardware store
Second, I highly recommmend checking out your burner requirements prior to
purchasing. I based mine on the kiln I used in a class which was powered
by an asphalt/weed burner. I bought this, modified the fitting to my
propane supply and then discovered that it would not work. A call to Marc
Ward helped me to sort this out (thanks Marc) and required the purchase of
two burners appropriate for my supply. Now I have an expensive, useless
weedburner.
Now a question: I had originally planned on one burner in the
center of the floor under a platform that would that would be holding the
pieces being fired. With two burners involved should I place them both in
the center or both near the outside. Also, if near the outside should they
aim straight up or be tilted. I have a tendency to want to place them at the
3 o'clock and a 9 o'clock positions with a tilt toward a clockwise
rotation. I'm wondering in this would create a swirling that would provide
an even heat distribution? Or maybe I'm just making this far too complicated!
Any and all comments are appreciated. Thanks for bothering to read
this long post. Happy Potting!

Keith Chervenak
Waiting for the snow to melt in Cleveland Ohio

Keith Chervenak on sat 11 may 96

I also highly recommend Steve Branfman's book. I recently built an
11 cubic foot fiber kiln using the wire mess design. Even with it's size
and the added weight of the fiber blanket I am still able to handle it in
and out of storage easily, although I do have a pulley system to raise and
lower during firings. I spoke with Marc Ward to get the appropriate
burners and I have been very happy with the way it fires.
Good luck,

Keith

Arturo Devitalis on sat 11 may 96

I would be glad to furnish plans for a very low cost, and very durable...and
very practical raku kiln. Send me your snail mail address if interested.
--
Arturo DeVitalis
arto@uhura.cc.rochester.edu

bruce/sue johnson on sun 1 mar 98

Has anybody had a any experenice with the large olympic Raku Kiln? I need
to up my production output and thinking about that kiln because of it being
soft brick. I really need it to fire even. Thanks Bruce Johnson

The Kiln Guy on mon 2 mar 98

> ----------------------------Original message----------------------------
> Has anybody had a any experenice with the large olympic Raku Kiln? I
need
> to up my production output and thinking about that kiln because of it
being
> soft brick. I really need it to fire even. Thanks Bruce Johnson

Hi Bruce,
I sold one of these kilns recently & liked the design except for the
location of the kiln-sitter (with the body of the kiln in the `up`
position, the wiring gets in the way). Olympic can build a very good kiln
but they need some work in the customer service / support area. That`s my 2
cents.
Chris @ Euclid's Kilns and Elements
1-800-296-5456
Web Site: http://www.euclids.com
E-Mail: mail@euclids.com

opw on mon 25 jan 99

My partner and I have developed a ceramic fiber raku kiln. It can be
operated by one person using a simple overhead pulley system. We've used
ours hundreds of times so I can assure you it is a tested, safe design.
I've seen other raku kilns for sale at prices that frankly, seem
unreasonable. Axner offers a raku kiln with a solid design, but I don't
think one person could work the thing(I'm not crazy about the idea of
lifting it up by hand, seems a bit dangerous to me.) Besides, that kiln
costs over =24550 and that is witout the optional =22no freeze=22 burner. ( =
add
another =24250 for that, plus installation of the dip tube) Generally =
freeze
ups only occur after repeated cycles of raku firing. With a standard 20lb
tank, you could fire our kiln at least five loads before any freezing
occurs. If you're really into heavy production, just use a 30lb tank=21
Axner also claims 15 minutes from 0 to 1850 degrees. You could easily do
the same in our kiln with the supplied 500,000btu torch, but it would give
the glaze no chance to mature. Generally a load in our kiln takes about an
hour. (thirty-five miutes for consecutive firings) Anyway, the point of
this post is that we intend to market our design. Just doesn't seem right
to have to pay so much for a raku kiln. Raku is a blast and I dont think
the average potter should have to sell his soul to get started. Our kiln
should be between 300 and 400 dollars complete with pulley system and
burner. If you really just want two handles, we could probably do that for
=24275 or less. The kiln will be coated with ITC for safety an durability.
If anyone is interested in a good kiln at a decent price, E-mail us at
opw=40savannahga.net We would like to know how many to produce. When the
product is completed we'll post more info and pics on our web page. Thanks

Brian Seckinger
Jamie Dove
Ogeechee Pottery Works
Richmond Hill, Georgia
(912)756-POTS

SBRANFPOTS@aol.com on mon 25 jan 99

On 1/19 John Ford wrote "...................got the raku kiln up and running
but can't get it to temp. It is a thirty gallon trash can with a five inch
port in the bottom, a four square inch flue in the
top,.......................And if I close the flue most of the way no flame
comes out. Any ideas?"

The most glaring error is the size and use of the flu. Is it really a four
square inch flue? The flue must be large..........real large. Enlarge the flue
to at least 6"x6" , it can even be a bit bigger. Keep the flue open to promote
good draft and efficent combustion. The smaller the flue the less
combustion/more reduction. Also it sounds like your burner port is too small.
You should have at least a 1" to 2" differential between the diameter of your
burner head and the burner port.

Steven Branfman
The Potters Shop
Raku: A Practical Approach

David Hendley on thu 28 jan 99

Hi folks, I may be overly cautious or paranoid, but have you
thought about insurance?
Think about it; a 500,000 btu burner could do some real
damage, ceramic fiber can be a real health hazard, and
who knows what someone might do with your kiln.

I know you have good motives and I wish you all the best
with your kiln, but I do believe you would be taking a
chance to market a kiln without having insurance. Part of
the cost of the other kilns is to cover insurance.
Just something to consider,
David Hendley
Maydelle, Texas



At 02:11 PM 1/25/99 EST, you wrote:
>----------------------------Original message----------------------------
>My partner and I have developed a ceramic fiber raku kiln. It can be
>operated by one person using a simple overhead pulley system. We've used
>ours hundreds of times so I can assure you it is a tested, safe design.
>I've seen other raku kilns for sale at prices that frankly, seem
>unreasonable. Axner offers a raku kiln with a solid design, but I don't
>think one person could work the thing(I'm not crazy about the idea of
>lifting it up by hand, seems a bit dangerous to me.) Besides, that kiln
>costs over $550 and that is witout the optional "no freeze" burner. ( add
>another $250 for that, plus installation of the dip tube) Generally freeze
>ups only occur after repeated cycles of raku firing. With a standard 20lb
>tank, you could fire our kiln at least five loads before any freezing
>occurs. If you're really into heavy production, just use a 30lb tank!
>Axner also claims 15 minutes from 0 to 1850 degrees. You could easily do
>the same in our kiln with the supplied 500,000btu torch, but it would give
>the glaze no chance to mature. Generally a load in our kiln takes about an
>hour. (thirty-five miutes for consecutive firings) Anyway, the point of
>this post is that we intend to market our design. Just doesn't seem right
>to have to pay so much for a raku kiln. Raku is a blast and I dont think
>the average potter should have to sell his soul to get started. Our kiln
>should be between 300 and 400 dollars complete with pulley system and
>burner. If you really just want two handles, we could probably do that for
>$275 or less. The kiln will be coated with ITC for safety an durability.
>If anyone is interested in a good kiln at a decent price, E-mail us at
>opw@savannahga.net We would like to know how many to produce. When the
>product is completed we'll post more info and pics on our web page. Thanks
>
>Brian Seckinger
>Jamie Dove
>Ogeechee Pottery Works
>Richmond Hill, Georgia
>(912)756-POTS
>

Hanne Bjorklund on fri 16 apr 99

I am curious.

Most gas fired Raku fibre lined drum kilns are "uprights".

This requires one to either reach deeply into the kiln to lift out the
pots, risking seriously singed eyebrows, knuckles and or beards. Or, via
a counter weight arrangement to lift the entire kiln off it's base to get
to the pots.

So here's a thought: Would it be possible to construct a Raku Kiln from a
fibre lined drum that would lie on it's side, on a conveniently high base,
(concrete blocks?) and use one end as a lift-off door?

This way it would be quite easy to simply reach inside the kiln to lift out
the pots.

AND, (like major IF) this was indeed feasible, what sort of 'chimney /
vent would be required at the top? And where should the burner port be
placed?

Any suggestions as how to get a bottom shelf into such a kiln?

If there is anyone out there in Clay-Land who have had similar thoughts,
please, please share your experience.

Just dreaming (maybe) down here in New Zealand where autumn has gently
arrived and the swimming is still good. The apples are being picked from
the orchard across the road, and soon they will be on their way to many
parts of our planet, bringing lots of sunshine and many warm days with
them.

HANNE
bjorklund@clear.net.nz

Marcia Selsor on sat 17 apr 99

Our kiln was lifted up by two students pulling cables while others removed the w
Marcia

Hanne Bjorklund wrote:
>
> ----------------------------Original message----------------------------
> I am curious.
>
> Most gas fired Raku fibre lined drum kilns are "uprights".
>
> This requires one to either reach deeply into the kiln to lift out the
> pots, risking seriously singed eyebrows, knuckles and or beards. Or, via
> a counter weight arrangement to lift the entire kiln off it's base to get
> to the pots.
>
> So here's a thought: Would it be possible to construct a Raku Kiln from a
> fibre lined drum that would lie on it's side, on a conveniently high base,
> (concrete blocks?) and use one end as a lift-off door?
>
> This way it would be quite easy to simply reach inside the kiln to lift out
> the pots.
>
> AND, (like major IF) this was indeed feasible, what sort of 'chimney /
> vent would be required at the top? And where should the burner port be
> placed?
>
> Any suggestions as how to get a bottom shelf into such a kiln?
>
> If there is anyone out there in Clay-Land who have had similar thoughts,
> please, please share your experience.
>
> Just dreaming (maybe) down here in New Zealand where autumn has gently
> arrived and the swimming is still good. The apples are being picked from
> the orchard across the road, and soon they will be on their way to many
> parts of our planet, bringing lots of sunshine and many warm days with
> them.
>
> HANNE
> bjorklund@clear.net.nz

--
Marcia Selsor
selsor@imt.net
http://www.imt.net/~mjbmls
http://www.imt.net/~mjbmls/spain99.html

Kenneth J. Nowicki on sat 17 apr 99

Hanne:

For me, personally... it just makes more sense and less hassle to have a
counter-balance kiln design for raku. There are some definite pros to the
concept. One is that when the kiln is raised directly up in the air... most
of the heat is retained in the kiln, and therefore I believe it's safer and
there is less of an opportunity to get burned, singed eyebrows, etc.

If the kiln is designed properly, lifting it should be a fairly easy job,
even for one person. The drawback to the front loading raku kiln it that you
will most likely receive a huge blast of hot air when you open that kiln door
on the front of the kiln... even with the proper protection (kevlar clothing,
gloves, goggles, face mask, etc.) ...why would anyone want to risk injury and
deal with that much heat when it's so much easier with a raku kiln that lifts
straight up?

Secondly, once the raku kiln has been lifted straight up, there is usually
room for at least two to three people to get involved with removing the hot
ware with tongs... from all sides... with a front loading kiln... in my
opinion, it would definitely be more of a problem as far as safely moving
around each other with hot pots.

As far as placing a kiln shelf into a drum kiln situated on it's side... due
the the curvature of the kiln... I'd say it might be a bit tricky. I think
you'd be almost better off building a raku kiln out of sheet metal in a box
design (with a front door).

I'm not saying that raku ware cannot be fired in a front loading kiln, I've
been to a workshop by Ron Carlson at UCSD where he did just that. And it's a
matter of personal preference, but in my opinion... the negatives outweigh
the positives. Therefore, I'll stick with my raku kiln of a counter-balance
design. :-)

But one last thing to remember... "there are no rules in ceramics... and
there's always room for experimentation..."

Take care and have a pleasant fall...

Ken Nowicki
RakuArtist@aol.com

"Here in Southern California where the last few days of 90 degree temps
reminds us that summer is almost here..."

Thonas C. Curran on sat 17 apr 99

Dear Hanne,
My Small top loading gas kiln is fine for raku - and no singed eyebrows
as yet. I try to fire pieces which are about the same height in the
same firing, and I only use one layer of ware for each firing. Pots are
placed on an old kiln shelf so that their tops almost touch the kiln
lid. When it is time to take the lid off, I can reach across to get
them out with tongs and do not have to lean over the kiln. It is worth
it to me not to fuss with more than one shelf load at a firing, since I
normally fire alone and don't want the pots to cool off too much before
they get into reduction chambers. Of course the kiln fires more quickly
with only one shelf of pots, so I don't think I'm wasting much propane.
It's also much safer not to have to contend with taking out a shelf to
get to a second layer of pots, too. (If I have pots of varying height,
I use 1/2 shelves or shelf fragments on stilts for the shorter pieces so
that they are all even and can be easily taken out.) Hope this helps -
Carolyn

muddpie on sat 17 apr 99

Hanne,

I have a fiber raku kiln that is lifted off by two people. It is very light
weight and as long as you are of average height... not a problem. It works
great as the heat stays inside the kiln so there is not much waste of heat.
Therefore your firings will come quicker. It is made of chicken wire wrapped
with a layer of fencing wire. The fiber lines the inside and is attached with
high temp wire and clay buttons. They will only withstand so many firings, but
are very inexpensive to construct. I have an old kiln lid as the base and use
hard fire brick to hold up the shelves. I am going to be building a smaller
one so that I can fire by myself, as this is a two person kiln. But as it is,
it only weighs about 35lbs.

Its also great in the winter, as the pieces sit in the cold air and the glaze
cools quite rapidly, allowing for great crackle!! I have the clears on the top
shelf, and on the bottom shelf around the fire bricks I have the patina's and
coppers so they are not too exposed to the air. I usually put extra bricks
around the perimeter of that shelf so I get great color on them as they are
first out of the kiln.

This system is also very portable. My motto is... "Have raku kiln will
travel". As i have to in order to Raku, and I do love it. Living in the city
they kinda frown on all the smoke.

JuliE
Grand Rapids Michigan
where a new job washed all the rain away!!

Hanne Bjorklund wrote:

> ----------------------------Original message----------------------------
> I am curious.
>
> Most gas fired Raku fibre lined drum kilns are "uprights".
>
> This requires one to either reach deeply into the kiln to lift out the
> pots, risking seriously singed eyebrows, knuckles and or beards. Or, via
> a counter weight arrangement to lift the entire kiln off it's base to get
> to the pots.
>
> So here's a thought: Would it be possible to construct a Raku Kiln from a
> fibre lined drum that would lie on it's side, on a conveniently high base,
> (concrete blocks?) and use one end as a lift-off door?
>
> This way it would be quite easy to simply reach inside the kiln to lift out
> the pots.
>
> AND, (like major IF) this was indeed feasible, what sort of 'chimney /
> vent would be required at the top? And where should the burner port be
> placed?
>
> Any suggestions as how to get a bottom shelf into such a kiln?
>
> If there is anyone out there in Clay-Land who have had similar thoughts,
> please, please share your experience.
>
> Just dreaming (maybe) down here in New Zealand where autumn has gently
> arrived and the swimming is still good. The apples are being picked from
> the orchard across the road, and soon they will be on their way to many
> parts of our planet, bringing lots of sunshine and many warm days with
> them.
>
> HANNE
> bjorklund@clear.net.nz

Craig Martell on sun 18 apr 99

Hanne asked:
>I am curious.
>Most gas fired Raku fibre lined drum kilns are "uprights".
>Would it be possible to construct a Raku Kiln from a
>fibre lined drum that would lie on it's side,

Hi:

Sure, why not? The kiln would be sort of a barrel arch-catenary sort of
arrangement. I'd wager that it would fire well and be easy to use.

I think one way to do the floor would be to use a castable refractory and
then do the fibre walls up from that. I don't know what kind of circulation
you are thinking about but you could make it an updraft for sure, or maybe a
crossdraft, which would require some sort of a bag wall and a chimney. Lots
of possibilities! Your idea is a good one!

regards, Craig Martell in Oregon

wrightspot on sun 18 apr 99

----------
> From: Hanne Bjorklund
> To: CLAYART@LSV.UKY.EDU
> Subject: raku kiln
> Date: Saturday, April 17, 1999 2:57 AM
>
> ----------------------------Original message----------------------------
> I am curious.
>
> Most gas fired Raku fibre lined drum kilns are "uprights".
>
> This requires one to either reach deeply into the kiln to lift out the
> pots, risking seriously singed eyebrows, knuckles and or beards. Or,
via
> a counter weight arrangement to lift the entire kiln off it's base to get
> to the pots.
>
> So here's a thought: Would it be possible to construct a Raku Kiln from
a
> fibre lined drum that would lie on it's side, on a conveniently high
base,
> (concrete blocks?) and use one end as a lift-off door?
>
> This way it would be quite easy to simply reach inside the kiln to lift
out
> the pots.
>
> AND, (like major IF) this was indeed feasible, what sort of 'chimney /
> vent would be required at the top? And where should the burner port be
> placed?
>
> Any suggestions as how to get a bottom shelf into such a kiln?
>
> If there is anyone out there in Clay-Land who have had similar thoughts,
> please, please share your experience.
>
> Just dreaming (maybe) down here in New Zealand where autumn has gently
> arrived and the swimming is still good. The apples are being picked from
> the orchard across the road, and soon they will be on their way to many
> parts of our planet, bringing lots of sunshine and many warm days with
> them.
>
> HANNE
> bjorklund@clear.net.nz
Hi Hanne,
Sorry I don't have direct help for your question, but you may be
interested in the following;
Some years ago we went to the McGregor Summer School in Toowoomba,
Queensland and did a two week raku workshop with Jeff Mincham. During
that course we learned to make a 4.5 cu ft portable raku kiln using 2
layers of fibre held together onto weldmesh (no. 8 fencing wire) by ceramic
buttons and nichrome wire. Sandwiched between the fibre and the fencing
wire was some heavy duty aluminium foil. We came home and made one for
ourselves (plus an extra section which we add on to the top of the kiln if
firing a large pot) and have used it very successfully ever since. It's
light and quite strong and heats up well, but because the fibre is
partially exposed, it's no good in the rain. If you're interested ,send
me an e-mail and I'll send more details.....I may have to send it snail
mail as it involves drawings etc. Denise.

Vince Pitelka on sun 18 apr 99

>For me, personally... it just makes more sense and less hassle to have a
>counter-balance kiln design for raku. There are some definite pros to the
>concept. One is that when the kiln is raised directly up in the air... most
>of the heat is retained in the kiln, and therefore I believe it's safer and
>there is less of an opportunity to get burned, singed eyebrows, etc.

The problem here is that as soon as you raise a bell kiln the wares start to
cool, and as you move them into the smoking chambers they will often cool
excessively, even with several people doing the job. I would rather lift
the wares out of a toploader or frontloader with tongs, with the kiln
holding the heat in. Using a bell kiln certainly makes sense for large
pots, but a toploader or frontloader is still my choice for most raku work.

>If the kiln is designed properly, lifting it should be a fairly easy job,
>even for one person. The drawback to the front loading raku kiln it that you
>will most likely receive a huge blast of hot air when you open that kiln door
>on the front of the kiln... even with the proper protection (kevlar clothing,
>gloves, goggles, face mask, etc.) ...why would anyone want to risk injury and
>deal with that much heat when it's so much easier with a raku kiln that lifts
>straight up?

I have not found this to be the case. There is certainly a lot of radiated
heat from a frontloader when you open the door, but with appropriate apron,
face-shield, and gloves (which one should be standard for ANY raku process)
it is not a problem to remove pots from a frontloader using standard raku tongs.
Best wishes -
- Vince

Vince Pitelka - vpitelka@DeKalb.net
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

Philip Davenport on mon 19 apr 99

Hanne:

In response to your question--You can make a raku front loading kiln
from an old electric kiln. I am a high school teacher and do not like
to throw anything away. Several years ago one of our medium size
electric kilns died I dedided to make it a raku kiln. I took out all of
the wiring and laid it on its side, atop its stand. Than way it would
be elevated off the ground. I put the peep holes on top and enlarged
one of the holes. I cut through the outer metal housing and through the
brick, back side of the kiln , for a place to put the burner. I took
off the lid hinge and constructed two brackets that would hold the lid
in place but wouod allow easy removal of the lid. I also had to
construct a handle for the lid so it could be lifted off the brackets.

This was a good one man kiln and with a little experimentation I was
soon doing raku firings by myself. The soft insulating brick does allow
for a pretty fast firing.

Hope this helps.

Phil Davenport
Garland, Tx

------------------------------------------------------------------------------

I am curious.

Most gas fired Raku fibre lined drum kilns are "uprights".

This requires one to either reach deeply into the kiln to lift out the
pots, risking seriously singed eyebrows, knuckles and or beards. Or,
via
a counter weight arrangement to lift the entire kiln off it's base to
get
to the pots.

So here's a thought: Would it be possible to construct a Raku Kiln from
a
fibre lined drum that would lie on it's side, on a conveniently high
base,
(concrete blocks?) and use one end as a lift-off door?

Stephen Mills on mon 19 apr 99

In message , Kenneth J. Nowicki writes
>----------------------------Original message----------------------------
>Hanne:
>
>For me, personally... it just makes more sense and less hassle to have a
>counter-balance kiln design for raku. There are some definite pros to the
>concept. One is that when the kiln is raised directly up in the air... most
>of the heat is retained in the kiln, and therefore I believe it's safer and
>there is less of an opportunity to get burned, singed eyebrows, etc.
>
>If the kiln is designed properly, lifting it should be a fairly easy job,
>even for one person. The drawback to the front loading raku kiln it that you
>will most likely receive a huge blast of hot air when you open that kiln door
>on the front of the kiln... even with the proper protection (kevlar clothing,
>gloves, goggles, face mask, etc.) ...why would anyone want to risk injury and
>deal with that much heat when it's so much easier with a raku kiln that lifts
>straight up?
>
>Secondly, once the raku kiln has been lifted straight up, there is usually
>room for at least two to three people to get involved with removing the hot
>ware with tongs... from all sides... with a front loading kiln... in my
>opinion, it would definitely be more of a problem as far as safely moving
>around each other with hot pots.
>
>As far as placing a kiln shelf into a drum kiln situated on it's side... due
>the the curvature of the kiln... I'd say it might be a bit tricky. I think
>you'd be almost better off building a raku kiln out of sheet metal in a box
>design (with a front door).
>
>I'm not saying that raku ware cannot be fired in a front loading kiln, I've
>been to a workshop by Ron Carlson at UCSD where he did just that. And it's a
>matter of personal preference, but in my opinion... the negatives outweigh
>the positives. Therefore, I'll stick with my raku kiln of a counter-balance
>design. :-)
>
>But one last thing to remember... "there are no rules in ceramics... and
>there's always room for experimentation..."
>
>Take care and have a pleasant fall...
>
>Ken Nowicki
>RakuArtist@aol.com
>
>"Here in Southern California where the last few days of 90 degree temps
>reminds us that summer is almost here..."
>
Over on this side of the pond, after a certain amount of experience in
this subject I have come down firmly on the side of a top loading kiln
where the lid comprises half of the pot chamber.
When unloading this design the lid is placed to one side on its 3 feet
(which act as guides when replacing it), and those taking part can then
queue up in an orderly fashion to remove their wares and treat them in
whatever manner they wish. As the pot chamber is halved, access to the
contents is not restricted.
There is no need to rush, as the retained heat in the body of the kiln
prevents the pots from cooling too quickly. Also, as the heat from the
kiln is rising as a column and the pieces are being removed with long
handled tongs, the need for cumbersome protective clothing is reduced.
A picture of this kiln design can be found in Robert Fournier's
Illustrated Dictionary of Practical Pottery under the subject heading of
"top Hat".
We have used this kiln for several years as part of our Educational
service bringing the Raku process to groups of up to 24 children, aged
12 and upwards, in Schools and Colleges in the English West Country.
Our safety record is 100 percent.

The disadvantages to me of kiln designs where the body of the kiln is
lifted off the setting (top hat) or in front loading versions are: rapid
shedding of heat by the wares, leading to the need to work quickly which
raises the risk factor up several notches, and the discomfort/danger of
horizontally radiated heat which I call the smouldering trouser
syndrome!
Top Hat kilns come into their own when dealing with large single pieces
or groups where the kiln can be lifted off with a gantry and replaced
with a reducing bin and treated in situ (Steve Branfman. Raku, a
practical approach. Page 82).

Steve Mills
on a personal hobby horse
in Bath
UK

--
Steve Mills
Bath
UK
home e-mail: stevemills@mudslinger.demon.co.uk
work e-mail: stevemills@bathpotters.demon.co.uk
own website: http://www.mudslinger.demon.co.uk
BPS website: http://www.bathpotters.demon.co.uk

John Rodgers on mon 19 apr 99

-- [ From: John Rodgers * EMC.Ver #2.5.02 ] --

One of the better raku kilns and smoothest firing operations that I have
seen was at the Kentuck Show last year in Northport, AL at the edge of
Tuscaloosa.

The kiln was refractory brick stacked half the height of the full kiln. The
floor was hard brick with refractory brick on top. A steel drum had been cut
for the second half and had been lined with refractory fiber, which was
held in place by a refractory adhesive from AP Green. A vent was cut in the
top. The burner was a glass blowers burner. The bricks were arranged to
accomodate the burner head. Hard brick supported a single octagon shaped
shelf. it set below the rim of the bricks.

The operation was to put a pot(s) on the shelf, set the barrel top on the
bricks, and fire away. While firing, the reduction area is prepared. The
operation included a #2 washtub for which had been made a lid of flat steel.
It had a pivot pin so when the pot went in, the lid was just slid in
position over it. The tub was filled about halfway with pine straw.

I asked why the brick construction. The reply was "It holds the heat best."
It was explained that when they fired raku, it was an all day job, one piece
right after another. And they didn't want the kiln cooling so much between
firings.

Made sense to me!

John Rodgers
In New Mexico

muddpie on tue 20 apr 99

John,

I have a friend who lives in the Gila mountain range there in NM. I was up
there a few years back and we couldn't get the kiln up to time... ever... do
you do Raku up that high? or do you not do raku? He is now doing his firings
in his electric kiln, which sits just inside the lower level door, and the
reducing chambers are just outside the door. At least he can still do it
there.

Just looking for suggestions to help him out.

JuliE in Michigan



John Rodgers wrote:

> ----------------------------Original message----------------------------
> -- [ From: John Rodgers * EMC.Ver #2.5.02 ] --
>
> One of the better raku kilns and smoothest firing operations that I have
> seen was at the Kentuck Show last year in Northport, AL at the edge of
> Tuscaloosa.
>
> The kiln was refractory brick stacked half the height of the full kiln. The
> floor was hard brick with refractory brick on top. A steel drum had been cut
> for the second half and had been lined with refractory fiber, which was
> held in place by a refractory adhesive from AP Green. A vent was cut in the
> top. The burner was a glass blowers burner. The bricks were arranged to
> accomodate the burner head. Hard brick supported a single octagon shaped
> shelf. it set below the rim of the bricks.
>
> The operation was to put a pot(s) on the shelf, set the barrel top on the
> bricks, and fire away. While firing, the reduction area is prepared. The
> operation included a #2 washtub for which had been made a lid of flat steel.
> It had a pivot pin so when the pot went in, the lid was just slid in
> position over it. The tub was filled about halfway with pine straw.
>
> I asked why the brick construction. The reply was "It holds the heat best."
> It was explained that when they fired raku, it was an all day job, one piece
> right after another. And they didn't want the kiln cooling so much between
> firings.
>
> Made sense to me!
>
> John Rodgers
> In New Mexico

millie carpenter on tue 20 apr 99

Denise

Is this raku kiln small & light enough that a very short woman could
lift it easily or is this one of those things that you have to be at
least 5'6" and strong to handle. or could it be made smaller from the
basic plans?

Millie in Md. where an incredibly stupid student stubbed his ciggarette
out on a roll of toilet paper in the boys bathroom and we had to stand
outside(cloudy and 60) for 30 minutes for the fire dept to put it all
out and get the smoke out of the building.

> Sorry I don't have direct help for your question, but you may be
> interested in the following;
> Some years ago we went to the McGregor Summer School in Toowoomba,
> Queensland and did a two week raku workshop with Jeff Mincham. During
> that course we learned to make a 4.5 cu ft portable raku kiln using 2
> layers of fibre held together onto weldmesh (no. 8 fencing wire) by ceramic
> buttons and nichrome wire. Sandwiched between the fibre and the fencing
> wire was some heavy duty aluminium foil. We came home and made one for
> ourselves (plus an extra section which we add on to the top of the kiln if
> firing a large pot) and have used it very successfully ever since. It's
> light and quite strong and heats up well, but because the fibre is
> partially exposed, it's no good in the rain. If you're interested ,send
> me an e-mail and I'll send more details.....I may have to send it snail
> mail as it involves drawings etc. Denise.

John Rodgers on sun 2 may 99

-- [ From: John Rodgers * EMC.Ver #2.5.02 ] --

Julie, at the moment I am not doing raku.

I have M750 cast iron venturi burners from Marc Ward that I use when I do
the raku. However I have not put them to work here. I suspect that the
altitude will render them fairly inefficient. This is probably what has
happened to your friend. The air at this altitude ...over 6000 feet... is
thin, and even more so at higher elevations, consequently you must add some
device to increase the amount of air(O2) available for the gas flow used.
Thus the use of blowers behind the burners to supply the air. I suspect that
even a one burner raku kiln setup, to be efficient, would require a blower
with the burner. . I think it to be a must at high elevations.

John Rodgers
In New Mexico
-------- REPLY, Original message follows --------

Date: Tuesday, 20-Apr-99 11:15 PM

From: muddpie \ Internet: (muddpie@ix.netcom.com)
To: Clayart \ Internet: (clayart@lsv.uky.edu)

Subject: Re: Raku Kiln

----------------------------Original message----------------------------
John,

I have a friend who lives in the Gila mountain range there in NM. I was up
there a few years back and we couldn't get the kiln up to time... ever...
do you do Raku up that high? or do you not do raku? He is now doing his
firings in his electric kiln, which sits just inside the lower level door,
and the reducing chambers are just outside the door. At least he can still
do it there.

Just looking for suggestions to help him out.

JuliE in Michigan



John Rodgers wrote:

> ----------------------------Original message----------------------------
> -- [ From: John Rodgers * EMC.Ver #2.5.02 ] --
>
> One of the better raku kilns and smoothest firing operations that I have
> seen was at the Kentuck Show last year in Northport, AL at the edge of
> Tuscaloosa.
>
> The kiln was refractory brick stacked half the height of the full kiln.
The
> floor was hard brick with refractory brick on top. A steel drum had been
cut
> for the second half and had been lined with refractory fiber, which was
> held in place by a refractory adhesive from AP Green. A vent was cut in
the
> top. The burner was a glass blowers burner. The bricks were arranged to
> accomodate the burner head. Hard brick supported a single octagon shaped
> shelf. it set below the rim of the bricks.
>
> The operation was to put a pot(s) on the shelf, set the barrel top on the
> bricks, and fire away. While firing, the reduction area is prepared. The
> operation included a #2 washtub for which had been made a lid of flat
steel.
> It had a pivot pin so when the pot went in, the lid was just slid in
> position over it. The tub was filled about halfway with pine straw.
>
> I asked why the brick construction. The reply was "It holds the heat best.
"
> It was explained that when they fired raku, it was an all day job, one
piece
> right after another. And they didn't want the kiln cooling so much between
> firings.
>
> Made sense to me!
>
> John Rodgers
> In New Mexico


-------- REPLY, End of original message --------

Pamala Browne on tue 4 may 99

Curious about this thread.I was going to use my venturi's in N.M. for my
raku kiln ( can't do it in my neighborhood here in C.A. ) But my house is at
8000 ', will I for sure need a blower? Do I set it up without and test it--
anybody know?
----- Original Message -----
From: John Rodgers
To:
Sent: Sunday, May 02, 1999 8:24 PM
Subject: Re: Raku Kiln


> ----------------------------Original message----------------------------
> -- [ From: John Rodgers * EMC.Ver #2.5.02 ] --
>
> Julie, at the moment I am not doing raku.
>
> I have M750 cast iron venturi burners from Marc Ward that I use when I do
> the raku. However I have not put them to work here. I suspect that the
> altitude will render them fairly inefficient. This is probably what has
> happened to your friend. The air at this altitude ...over 6000 feet... is
> thin, and even more so at higher elevations, consequently you must add
some
> device to increase the amount of air(O2) available for the gas flow used.
> Thus the use of blowers behind the burners to supply the air. I suspect
that
> even a one burner raku kiln setup, to be efficient, would require a blower
> with the burner. . I think it to be a must at high elevations.
>
> John Rodgers
> In New Mexico
> -------- REPLY, Original message follows --------
>
> Date: Tuesday, 20-Apr-99 11:15 PM
>
> From: muddpie \ Internet: (muddpie@ix.netcom.com)
> To: Clayart \ Internet: (clayart@lsv.uky.edu)
>
> Subject: Re: Raku Kiln
>
> ----------------------------Original message----------------------------
> John,
>
> I have a friend who lives in the Gila mountain range there in NM. I was
up
> there a few years back and we couldn't get the kiln up to time... ever...
> do you do Raku up that high? or do you not do raku? He is now doing his
> firings in his electric kiln, which sits just inside the lower level door,
> and the reducing chambers are just outside the door. At least he can
still
> do it there.
>
> Just looking for suggestions to help him out.
>
> JuliE in Michigan
>
>
>
> John Rodgers wrote:
>
> > ----------------------------Original message----------------------------
> > -- [ From: John Rodgers * EMC.Ver #2.5.02 ] --
> >
> > One of the better raku kilns and smoothest firing operations that I have
> > seen was at the Kentuck Show last year in Northport, AL at the edge of
> > Tuscaloosa.
> >
> > The kiln was refractory brick stacked half the height of the full kiln.
> The
> > floor was hard brick with refractory brick on top. A steel drum had been
> cut
> > for the second half and had been lined with refractory fiber, which was
> > held in place by a refractory adhesive from AP Green. A vent was cut in
> the
> > top. The burner was a glass blowers burner. The bricks were arranged to
> > accomodate the burner head. Hard brick supported a single octagon shaped
> > shelf. it set below the rim of the bricks.
> >
> > The operation was to put a pot(s) on the shelf, set the barrel top on
the
> > bricks, and fire away. While firing, the reduction area is prepared. The
> > operation included a #2 washtub for which had been made a lid of flat
> steel.
> > It had a pivot pin so when the pot went in, the lid was just slid in
> > position over it. The tub was filled about halfway with pine straw.
> >
> > I asked why the brick construction. The reply was "It holds the heat
best.
> "
> > It was explained that when they fired raku, it was an all day job, one
> piece
> > right after another. And they didn't want the kiln cooling so much
between
> > firings.
> >
> > Made sense to me!
> >
> > John Rodgers
> > In New Mexico
>
>
> -------- REPLY, End of original message --------
>

Marc Ward on wed 5 may 99



>> I have M750 cast iron venturi burners from Marc Ward that I use when I do
>> the raku. However I have not put them to work here. I suspect that the
>> altitude will render them fairly inefficient. This is probably what has
>> happened to your friend. The air at this altitude ...over 6000 feet... is
>> thin, and even more so at higher elevations, consequently you must add
>some
>> device to increase the amount of air(O2) available for the gas flow used.
>> Thus the use of blowers behind the burners to supply the air. I suspect
>that
>> even a one burner raku kiln setup, to be efficient, would require a blower
>> with the burner. . I think it to be a must at high elevations.

The amount of orifice change required for this altitude is practically nil.
The MR750 is sorta' a dumb little animal and wouldn't notice the difference.
An increase of 50% to burner port size and exit flue would solve any of the
lower partial pressure of O2 that you will experience at altitude. This may
not be true for all burners and fuels, but will hold true for MR750's & MR100
Raku Burners on high pressure propane at altitude. As for
efficientcy.....Raku and efficientcy are like a dragster and how many miles
per gallon you get :-). Per pot, Raku is one of the most inefficient things
that can be done with fossil fuels. That doesn't make it less fun and
exciting, just makes the point mute. Blowers and Venturi's are poor matches
and not really made to be joined. If a blower greatly improves the
performance of a Venturi, you've got the wrong size orifice (too large) in
the burner and you'd be better off with a straight pipe fitted with to the
blower.

Marc Ward
Ward Burner Systems
PO Box 333
Dandridge, TN 37725
USA
423.397.2914 voice
423.397.1253 fax
wardburner@aol.com

Juliet Johnston on wed 30 jun 99

I am ready to make or buy a raku kiln.I hope you can help me with a few
questions.

Do I judge the firing ability by the BTU output?

Are there differences in fiber blanket thicknesss and quality?

Will any metal garbage can do or is there a best quality or weight? Is
there a better frame to use?
Is a no freeze burner important? Can I purchase a burner from a gas
dealer?

How long should I expect this type of raku kiln to last?

Do you have any favorites or recommendations?

Thanks, as you can tell I'm a little lost here. Juliet, trying hard.

Juliet
juljohnston@webtv.net

Marvin Flowerman on fri 2 jul 99

Juliet:

I strongly suggest you contact Mark Ward at Ward Burner Systems in Tennessee;
P.O. Box 333, Dandridge, TN 37725.
This is his speciality and his guidance based on many years of experience
will save you lots of time, energy and grief.

All the best.

Marvin Flowerman (marvpots@aol.com)

Juliet Johnston on sun 8 aug 99

I built a top hat raku kln that is 18" x 24" interior diameter. We are
having problems firing it. It is sometimes impossible to see the color
of the flame to judge whether it is yellow or blue. We have never had
the glaze melt on all of the pots at one time. some are under fired
while others are over fired. None were just right. When the glaze starts
to melt n some pots we have turned the gas down so that the other pots
could get to that point. Was this right or wrong? Would someone please
give me a few or many pointers. I have been using Steve Branfman's
book.TIA

Juliet
juljohnston@webtv.net

islandplace3 on mon 24 dec 01


Does anyone have any experience with or knowledge of the
"Rocky Raku" castable kiln?
Mike

Joan Millette on tue 29 oct 02


Has anyone constructed a raku kiln out of one of thoseturkey cookers? =
Does it seem possible? Would it be worth it?
Joan Millette

Phil Smith on tue 29 oct 02


Joan,
I have built two Raku units out of 55 Gallon oil drums.
I can give you plans if you like.
These are not however the lift off type.
They have a lid that you remove when pots are ready.
Very portable and economical to build.
Great if you fire solo.
Also can fire pots 24" tall...
I imagine you can make a smaller one with a 30 gallon oil drum
which could be inverted to make it a lift off type.
The plans are simple. Just have to recalculate the materials list
and dimensions for drilling if going with smaller drum.
Let me know, I can send pics if you like.
Phil:

Philip Poburka on tue 29 oct 02


A nice one may be made...of say, a 55 Gallon Drum as has one
end cut out, or some of them come with one end removable
anyway...

Set a maybe 1/8th stick of dynamite on something so it is a
little ways 'up'...like on a stick say, as ideally in a Mud
Flat somwehere..and set the Drum on that...keep it
'centered', and make sure the ends are down into the
mud...may take a few tries as you work 'up' to the right
amount...or you may split a few drums getting the knack...

Watch out it does not land on you, as it may go up in the
Air some ways...and...well, maybe better have someoone help
who is familiar in these matters.

Gives a nice 'dome' to the end of the Drum...then cut a hole
in the top of the 'dome' and make (Throw) a happy little
Chimney for it, or one as you may regulate if you like...

Line then with some Kaolin wool, useing Nichrome Wire scraps
and little 'buttons' of Clay as are easy to make...

Have a little 'bed' of Soft brick with your Burner in
it...and a boom to raise and lower the drum...

Phil
Las Vegas...

----- Original Message -----
From: "Joan Millette"
To:
Sent: Tuesday, October 29, 2002 9:17 AM
Subject: raku kiln


Has anyone constructed a raku kiln out of one of thoseturkey
cookers? Does it seem possible? Would it be worth it?
Joan Millette

____________________________________________________________
__________________
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Sarah Chenoweth on tue 29 oct 02


phil,

i'm in the process of building a kiln from a 55-gallon drum and would
appreciate seeing your plans or any other advice you may have. my carpenter
father and i are teaming up and designing a counterweight lift-off design
from scrap metal retrieved from his construction site. i would like to be
able to fire higher than raku temps...cone 10 potential would be great.
georgie's in portland says their 1" fiber can fire up to 2500 degrees...could
this be correct? i thought i would need at least 2" of 8lb fiber.

thanks for any info

sarah in hood river, or

Kin Cook on tue 29 oct 02


Hi Phil,
Saw your post and wondered if you might send me your plans. I've
been doing raku for a few years and would like to make a larger kiln
and would like a look at your plans. If you have the plans in
electronic format, just e-mail them to kin.cook@verizon.net; if in
hard copy, let me know the cost for reproduction and an address to
mail the payment to.

Thanks!
Kin Cook

On 29 Oct 2002 at 14:33, Phil Smith wrote:

> Joan,
> I have built two Raku units out of 55 Gallon oil drums.
> I can give you plans if you like.
> These are not however the lift off type.
> They have a lid that you remove when pots are ready.
> Very portable and economical to build.
> Great if you fire solo.
> Also can fire pots 24" tall...
> I imagine you can make a smaller one with a 30 gallon oil drum
> which could be inverted to make it a lift off type.
> The plans are simple. Just have to recalculate the materials list
> and dimensions for drilling if going with smaller drum.
> Let me know, I can send pics if you like.
> Phil:
>
> ______________________________________________________________________________
> Send postings to clayart@lsv.ceramics.org
>
> You may look at the archives for the list or change your subscription
> settings from http://www.ceramics.org/clayart/
>
> Moderator of the list is Mel Jacobson who may be reached at melpots@pclink.com.

Robert Izzi on tue 29 oct 02


GORDIN HUTCHINS HAS GREAT PLANS ON HIS VIDEO "BEGINNING RAKU" FOR A RAKU KILN
USING A 55 GALLON OIL DRUM. I HAVE BUILT TWO AND THEY WORK GREAT.

Brian Crocker on wed 30 oct 02


Hallo Phil,

Can I also have pics of your Kiln please ?

I'm happy to pay for the pics and potstage.

Kind regards,

CROC from Oz.
================================
----- Original Message -----
From: "Phil Smith"
To:
Sent: Wednesday, October 30, 2002 6:03 AM
Subject: Re: raku kiln


> Joan,
> I have built two Raku units out of 55 Gallon oil drums.
> I can give you plans if you like.
> These are not however the lift off type.
> They have a lid that you remove when pots are ready.
> Very portable and economical to build.
> Great if you fire solo.
> Also can fire pots 24" tall...
> I imagine you can make a smaller one with a 30 gallon oil drum
> which could be inverted to make it a lift off type.
> The plans are simple. Just have to recalculate the materials list
> and dimensions for drilling if going with smaller drum.
> Let me know, I can send pics if you like.
> Phil:
>
>
____________________________________________________________________________
__
> Send postings to clayart@lsv.ceramics.org
>
> You may look at the archives for the list or change your subscription
> settings from http://www.ceramics.org/clayart/
>
> Moderator of the list is Mel Jacobson who may be reached at
melpots@pclink.com.
>

Joan Millette on wed 30 oct 02


Phil--I get very confused at some of the postings--many of mine miss the
target, I guess. I would be happy to look at your plans for raku kiln. it
sounds perfect for me. joan
----- Original Message -----
From: "Phil Smith"
To:
Sent: Tuesday, October 29, 2002 2:33 PM
Subject: Re: raku kiln


> Joan,
> I have built two Raku units out of 55 Gallon oil drums.
> I can give you plans if you like.
> These are not however the lift off type.
> They have a lid that you remove when pots are ready.
> Very portable and economical to build.
> Great if you fire solo.
> Also can fire pots 24" tall...
> I imagine you can make a smaller one with a 30 gallon oil drum
> which could be inverted to make it a lift off type.
> The plans are simple. Just have to recalculate the materials list
> and dimensions for drilling if going with smaller drum.
> Let me know, I can send pics if you like.
> Phil:
>
>
____________________________________________________________________________
__
> Send postings to clayart@lsv.ceramics.org
>
> You may look at the archives for the list or change your subscription
> settings from http://www.ceramics.org/clayart/
>
> Moderator of the list is Mel Jacobson who may be reached at
melpots@pclink.com.

June Perry on thu 31 oct 02


Phil, if you have a scanner you could scan the picture and post it on a web
page or one of those free album pages that other Clayarters use.


Regards,
June Perry
http://www.angelfire.com/art2/shambhalapottery/index.html

Elaine Oliver on fri 16 may 03


A young mother with a small baby is yearning to return to her second
love-RAKU. I remember an article in Clay Times or Pottery Making
sometime ago describing a raku kiln that anyone could build. I thought
the article was written by Mel, but maybe not. Does anyone remember in
which issue it appeared? I would appreciate your help. Thank you.



Elaine Oliver

Vienna, Virginia

Annie Evans on sat 17 may 03


There's a great raku kiln made with fiber for under $200 - look in the
magazines for the ad since I can't remember (being over 50) where I got it.

Pamela Watkins on wed 21 may 03


The newest issue of Clay Times Vol 9 #3 May June 03 has a brief article by Marc Ward of www.wardburner.com that loosly outlines making a recycled electric kiln into a gas raku kiln. Last summer in a 2week Raku Crash class, we did this exact thing and were abled to fire raku, although the regular Gas Kiln was much easier. If you are serious about this you should buy Steve Branfman's " Raku A Practical Approach" in which he details many options for building a Raku Kiln.

Good Luck
~jaq

Elaine Oliver wrote:
A young mother with a small baby is yearning to return to her second
love-RAKU. I remember an article in Clay Times or Pottery Making
sometime ago describing a raku kiln that anyone could build. I thought
the article was written by Mel, but maybe not. Does anyone remember in
which issue it appeared? I would appreciate your help. Thank you.



Elaine Oliver

Vienna, Virginia

______________________________________________________________________________
Send postings to clayart@lsv.ceramics.org

You may look at the archives for the list or change your subscription
settings from http://www.ceramics.org/clayart/

Moderator of the list is Mel Jacobson who may be reached at melpots@pclink.com.

---------------------------------
Do you Yahoo!?
The New Yahoo! Search - Faster. Easier. Bingo.

ample-annie@JUNO.COM on wed 7 apr 04


Hi,
came across your website in search of directions to make a raku kiln.
Can you help?
Thanks,
Sherri

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dneese on wed 7 apr 04


Directions for building a great little Raku kiln can be found in the pages
of the recently released Lark Ceramics Book authored by James Watkins and
Paul Andrew Wandless. ALTERNATIVE KILNS & FIRING TECHNIQUES.
Check it out.

Dale Tex
"across the alley from the Alamo"
San Antonio, Texas USA

dneese on sun 11 jul 04


Alternative Kilns and Firing Techniques. James Watkins, Lark Books.

yorkbandit on mon 12 jul 04


I am looking for directions for building a wire raku kiln. any help
in locating directions would be appreciated.
Thanks!

Cynthia Bracker on tue 13 jul 04


Check out this link:
http://www.brackers.com/store/results_detail.cfm?cat=62&prodid=RAKUKILN
If the picture looks like what you have in mind, e-mail me off-list or
call (888) 822-1982. I'd be happy to help you! This was my Dad's
design from the early 1970s (modified and revised several times)
Although we do construct them and sell them, we are happy to help
"do-it-yourself-ers" who want to construct their own either for
experience or cost factors!
Cindy Bracker
Bracker's Good Earth Clays, Inc.

yorkbandit wrote:

>I am looking for directions for building a wire raku kiln. any help
>in locating directions would be appreciated.
>Thanks!
>
>______________________________________________________________________________
>Send postings to clayart@lsv.ceramics.org
>
>You may look at the archives for the list or change your subscription
>settings from http://www.ceramics.org/clayart/
>
>Moderator of the list is Mel Jacobson who may be reached at melpots@pclink.com.
>
>
>
>

Steve Mills on wed 14 jul 04


Try

and


Steve


In message , yorkbandit writes
>I am looking for directions for building a wire raku kiln. any help
>in locating directions would be appreciated.
>Thanks!

--
Steve Mills
Bath
UK

william schran on wed 14 jul 04


Cindy wrote:> This was my Dad's
design from the early 1970s (modified and revised several times)
Although we do construct them and sell them, we are happy to help
"do-it-yourself-ers" who want to construct their own either for
experience or cost factors!<

I'd like to hear from folks who have used the Bracker's raku kiln
design and how it has worked for them.

One of my students purchased this kiln and was never able to get it
up to temperature.

I made several suggestions, including contacting the manufacturer.
The student didn't have a regulator, so never knew how much pressure
was being used and I suspect she was using way too much pressure.

Anyway, I had her bring the kiln to school and I made some
modifications to the kiln and how to set up the base bricks. Now the
kiln is working fine and getting to temperature.

I'd appreciate Cindy responding with any specific directions about
firing this particular kiln.

Bill

Cynthia Bracker on wed 14 jul 04


Without knowing the specifics of how your student was firing/location
etc. I can't completely answer that question. Many people buy our Raku
kiln and use their own burner. The Red Dragon Propane Torch that we
sell in our Raku Kiln kit was something my dad used to use for burning
weeds. It is capable of 1/2 million BTUs which led dad to try it for
Raku. He like this torch because it is incredibly affordable (Retail
Price on it is $85.00) and from his tests, worked very well. HOWEVER,
(and this is something that I get a lot of questions on) it is a Natural
Draft burner, not Forced Air. This means that the burner tip must be
approximately 2-4" outside of the kiln, not inside. If it's inside, it
won't get any/enough oxygen and won't combust, thus never reaching
temperature. This topic is covered both in Olsen's The Kiln Book and
Branfman's Raku: A Practical Approach if you want to delve further into
the physics. (Frankly, physics is not my thing) While we're on
the topic of the burner, it also has a safety shut-off valve that will
engage when/if the pressure increases too quickly (i.e. the burner is
turned up too much too fast) You can go to the Red Dragon website:
http://www.flameengineering.com/Vapor_Torch_Kits.html for more
information on the torch as well as other torches they sell. They do
offer one with a regulator, but it is $164.52. I have a hard time
justifying doubling the price of the burner just for a regulator.
I also think that it is more important to have a regulator on the
propane tank rather than the torch, which leads me to the next possible
cause of the problem - The propane tank. A 25# tank will support about
2-4 firings. Ultimately, this is another physics thing, so check Olsen
for details, but basically as the propane is used from the tank, the
pressure in the tank and line decreases thus delivering fewer BTUs/hour
which slows your rate of climb and ultimately stalls it. When Dad was
teaching at Purdue, he bought a couple of 100# tanks, which are great!
Unfortunately they're illegal to own in Kansas and many other states.
(Fortunately, Dad was allowed to keep them since he had moved here from
another state where it was legal) But you can usually find a place to
rent them. You put down a deposit on the tank and when you bring it
back, they give back your deposit, check the level of propane and charge
you only for what you used. You could spend an entire day Raku-ing and
not use even half the tank! Our official recommendation is to use a 30#
tank. Also, at higher elevations, you will absolutely need a larger
tank (more physics stuff)
There has also been a thread about weather and Raku. One of my dad's
favorite time to Raku was the dead of winter when it was snowing. He'd
set the kiln up on a concrete pad outside of our garage and set up a
lounge chair in the garage that he would sit in to monitor the kiln. He
appreciated what the barometric pressure did to the firing and the snow
on the hot pot really accentuated the crackle white glaze.
I hope this helps! If I missed something, please point it out and I
will be happy to address it!
Also, if you're still reading this after all my verbosity, I'd like to
ask that you indulge me a bit of "daughterly pride" Very few people
know that my dad was the first person to build and fire a Raku kiln made
from ceramic fiber. Fiber blanket was just hitting market in the early
70's. Dad stumbled upon it and tested it. When he found that it
worked, he demonstrated it at the 1974 NCECA in Madison. And thus, the
Fiber Raku kiln was born. Thanks for your indulgence!
Cindy Bracker
Bracker's Good Earth Clays, Inc.

william schran wrote:

> Cindy wrote:> This was my Dad's
> design from the early 1970s (modified and revised several times)
> Although we do construct them and sell them, we are happy to help
> "do-it-yourself-ers" who want to construct their own either for
> experience or cost factors!<
>
> I'd like to hear from folks who have used the Bracker's raku kiln
> design and how it has worked for them.
>
> One of my students purchased this kiln and was never able to get it
> up to temperature.
>
> I made several suggestions, including contacting the manufacturer.
> The student didn't have a regulator, so never knew how much pressure
> was being used and I suspect she was using way too much pressure.
>
> Anyway, I had her bring the kiln to school and I made some
> modifications to the kiln and how to set up the base bricks. Now the
> kiln is working fine and getting to temperature.
>
> I'd appreciate Cindy responding with any specific directions about
> firing this particular kiln.
>
> Bill
>
> ______________________________________________________________________________
>
> Send postings to clayart@lsv.ceramics.org
>
> You may look at the archives for the list or change your subscription
> settings from http://www.ceramics.org/clayart/
>
> Moderator of the list is Mel Jacobson who may be reached at
> melpots@pclink.com.
>
>

william schran on wed 14 jul 04


Cynthia wrote:>.....it is a Natural Draft burner, not Forced Air.
This means that the burner tip must be
approximately 2-4" outside of the kiln, not inside.
......also think that it is more important to have a regulator on the
propane tank rather than the torch, which leads me to the next possible
cause of the problem - The propane tank. A 25# tank will support about
2-4 firings.<

Cynthia - Thanks for your long response - I appreciate your time
discussing possible issues regarding Bracker's raku kiln. I also
enjoyed the history lesson about your Dad.

When my student came to me stating this new raku kiln she had bought
would not reach temperature even though she had used almost a full
#25 propane tank, my first thoughts were "she's gotta be doing
something wrong".

My suggestions were to make certain the burner was not stuck in the
kiln, but a couple inches outside the burner port, as you pointed
out. I also felt she was using way too much pressure, but without a
regulator (I suggested one on the tank) it would be impossible to
know. I think she finally got a regulator for the tank.
I also suggested building a wall of IFB instead of placing the kiln
on a flat floor of brick, two courses high and placing the kiln shelf
on 9" support bricks. This seemed to help quite a bit.

We now use #30 propane tanks at school, but when we used #25 tanks,
we would get at least ten firings from each. Last one or two firings
had the tank sitting in a big pan of water.

Bill

Cynthia Bracker on wed 14 jul 04


william schran wrote:

> I also suggested building a wall of IFB instead of placing the kiln
> on a flat floor of brick, two courses high and placing the kiln shelf
> on 9" support bricks. This seemed to help quite a bit.
>
> We now use #30 propane tanks at school, but when we used #25 tanks,
> we would get at least ten firings from each. Last one or two firings
> had the tank sitting in a big pan of water.

Bill
It sounds like you gave her excellent advice and I'm happy it worked out
for her. I'm not quite being able to visualize the wall of IFB. How
are you posting the shelf if not with bricks and where is the burner
placed? Am I out-thinking this? If you look at this picture:
http://www.brackers.com/store/product_images/rakukiln4.jpg
showing the set-up, you'll see that the burner points directly at a
brick opposite. I forgot to mention this in my other e-mail. This is
fairly important because it reflects/deflects the flame under the shelf
and it keeps direct flame off the fiber, thus increasing its life. Some
people have also tried standing the bricks up so they are vertical.
This often helps depending on the work and environmental conditions,
provided the positioning is the same.

I admit that I personally have never fired with 25# tanks. The 2-4
number I gave was based on feedback from other customers. From what
else you said, I would guess that you know how to fire a lot better than
they do (or they weren't starting with full tanks - who knows how many
times they had barbeque'd first! ha ha) I appreciate the feedback on
that. I will pass on that info to my mom, sister and husband for future
troubleshooting!

I also forgot to mention that some people have had a lot of success if
they put some scrap fiber in one of the vent holes (usually the center
one). This can be particularly helpful on the first part of the first
firing. For reference, as a standard expectation, the first firing in
this kiln should take about 45 minutes, with subsequent firings taking
about 30 minutes.

Also, my mom said I should mention that you have a great name! (Anyone
want to guess what my Dad's name was?)
Cindy

william schran on wed 14 jul 04


Cindy wrote:>I'm not quite being able to visualize the wall of IFB. How
are you posting the shelf if not with bricks and where is the burner
placed? Am I out-thinking this?<

Thanks for sending the link with the picture of the support bricks
under the shelf.

The suggestion of the stacked wall of IFB would have them placed on
top of the floor around the perimeter, laid flat as the floor bricks
are, 2 courses totaling 4" high. The kiln top would rest on this
wall, instead of the bottom. This would allow 3 IFB's to be used
vertically (9.5") as shelf supports.
I believe this allows for more of a "combustion chamber" under the shelf.

Using an old expanded metal 1" fiber lined kiln (exterior dimensions
of 24" H X 16.5" diam.) with the above described brick arrangement
and a 13" round shelf, our first firings would be an hour to heat up,
then down to 20 minutes each. This was with a 40,000 btu burner.

In addition to other suggestions for the student, I did have her
block off one of the flue holes also.

Bill

Joanne on thu 11 aug 05


Looking for some advice on a new raku kiln. The one i use now is too small
but I don't feel competent enough to build my own so was thinking about
splurging on something like a Laguna - i need something that's about 24" in
diameter & does not take a lot of muscle to lift. Anybody have yeahs or
nays they'd like to share before i plunk down all this money?

thanks -
Joanne

William & Susan Schran User on thu 11 aug 05


On 8/11/05 1:26 AM, "Joanne" wrote:

> Looking for some advice on a new raku kiln. The one i use now is too small
> but I don't feel competent enough to build my own so was thinking about
> splurging on something like a Laguna - i need something that's about 24" in
> diameter & does not take a lot of muscle to lift.

We got the Axner fiber lined raku kiln several years ago.The fiber is the
soluble kind and is supposed to be less dangerous. The interior was sprayed
with ITC, but most of that came off the interior top after the first year.

It's constructed of heavy expanded metal and can be easily lifted by two
people, but is a bit heavy/bulky for one person. The top has no expanded
metal, just fiber, so I cut out a piece of expanded metal and laid it on top
so we could preheat the pots.

The flue is the only hole in the kiln, so we cut a 1" hole in the side for
viewing the pots.


--
William "Bill" Schran
Fredericksburg, Virginia

Marcia Selsor on thu 11 aug 05


There was a good article in PMI about 5 years ago I think. It was
very easy to do. I built two kilns from one roll of 2 inch fiber.
One is smaller than the other. The larger of the two is about 26"
inside diameter and the other is about 20". I use old kiln lids for a
base and then some bricks for the base walls where the burner comes
in. I built the two kilns for about $550 including my great tandem
system of 2 burners hooked up to 3 tanks of gas. Mark Ward built them
for me.
I also sprayed the fiber with ITC which I spray on everything. The
design from PMI uses hardware fabric 1/2 wire mesh. I take these
kilns to workshops and fire lots of pieces with them. very efficient.
Marcia Selsor

On Aug 10, 2005, at 11:26 PM, Joanne wrote:

> Looking for some advice on a new raku kiln. The one i use now is
> too small
> but I don't feel competent enough to build my own so was thinking
> about
> splurging on something like a Laguna - i need something that's
> about 24" in
> diameter & does not take a lot of muscle to lift. Anybody have
> yeahs or
> nays they'd like to share before i plunk down all this money?
>
> thanks -
> Joanne
>
> ______________________________________________________________________
> ________
> Send postings to clayart@lsv.ceramics.org
>
> You may look at the archives for the list or change your subscription
> settings from http://www.ceramics.org/clayart/
>
> Moderator of the list is Mel Jacobson who may be reached at
> melpots@pclink.com.
>
>

Lester Haworth on thu 11 aug 05


Hi Joanne,
Although my opinion is bias, I do have experience with Laguna's Raku kiln.
It is a great kiln that takes about 30 to 45 min. to hit temperature on the
first firing, and each subsequent firing takes 20 to 25 min. The best
feature on this kiln is the optional Auto-Lift with remote foot switch. The
foot switch is easy to operate, one click and the chamber goes up, another
click and it stops allowing you to pull pots from the kiln, and the next
click lowers the chamber. It removes one person from the operation and is
much safer in the long run for schools and other concerned individuals. The
kiln runs on 120 vac. and either propane or natural gas. I recently fired
this kiln for a workshop that I did for CAEA. Needless to say the workshop
went off without a hitch and everyone loved the Raku kiln. For more
information please visit our website at http://www.lagunaclay.com

Best of luck to you.

Les Haworth
Sales & Technical support
Laguna Clay Co.

-----Original Message-----
From: Clayart [mailto:CLAYART@LSV.CERAMICS.ORG]On Behalf Of Joanne
Sent: Wednesday, August 10, 2005 10:27 PM
To: CLAYART@LSV.CERAMICS.ORG
Subject: Raku kiln


Looking for some advice on a new raku kiln. The one i use now is too small
but I don't feel competent enough to build my own so was thinking about
splurging on something like a Laguna - i need something that's about 24" in
diameter & does not take a lot of muscle to lift. Anybody have yeahs or
nays they'd like to share before i plunk down all this money?

thanks -
Joanne

____________________________________________________________________________
__
Send postings to clayart@lsv.ceramics.org

You may look at the archives for the list or change your subscription
settings from http://www.ceramics.org/clayart/

Moderator of the list is Mel Jacobson who may be reached at
melpots@pclink.com.

Frank Colson on thu 11 aug 05


Joanne- I believe you would like to meet ROCKY RAKU at www.R2D2u.com
Rocky cost no more than $50.00 to make, will go to raku glaze temps in less
than 3 minuets, and is totally portable with a weight of about 20lbs. You
and ROCKY could do a lot of great small pots while you work out how to make
a suspension raku kiln with the inside measurements you are asking about
for a whopping less than 2 hundred!

Frank Colson
----- Original Message -----
From: "Marcia Selsor"
To:
Sent: Thursday, August 11, 2005 8:30 AM
Subject: Re: Raku kiln


> There was a good article in PMI about 5 years ago I think. It was
> very easy to do. I built two kilns from one roll of 2 inch fiber.
> One is smaller than the other. The larger of the two is about 26"
> inside diameter and the other is about 20". I use old kiln lids for a
> base and then some bricks for the base walls where the burner comes
> in. I built the two kilns for about $550 including my great tandem
> system of 2 burners hooked up to 3 tanks of gas. Mark Ward built them
> for me.
> I also sprayed the fiber with ITC which I spray on everything. The
> design from PMI uses hardware fabric 1/2 wire mesh. I take these
> kilns to workshops and fire lots of pieces with them. very efficient.
> Marcia Selsor
>
> On Aug 10, 2005, at 11:26 PM, Joanne wrote:
>
> > Looking for some advice on a new raku kiln. The one i use now is
> > too small
> > but I don't feel competent enough to build my own so was thinking
> > about
> > splurging on something like a Laguna - i need something that's
> > about 24" in
> > diameter & does not take a lot of muscle to lift. Anybody have
> > yeahs or
> > nays they'd like to share before i plunk down all this money?
> >
> > thanks -
> > Joanne
> >
> > ______________________________________________________________________
> > ________
> > Send postings to clayart@lsv.ceramics.org
> >
> > You may look at the archives for the list or change your subscription
> > settings from http://www.ceramics.org/clayart/
> >
> > Moderator of the list is Mel Jacobson who may be reached at
> > melpots@pclink.com.
> >
> >
>
>
____________________________________________________________________________
__
> Send postings to clayart@lsv.ceramics.org
>
> You may look at the archives for the list or change your subscription
> settings from http://www.ceramics.org/clayart/
>
> Moderator of the list is Mel Jacobson who may be reached at
melpots@pclink.com.

Deborah Bridle on fri 12 aug 05


Hi Joanne :)
My husband and I built our Raku kiln from a stainless steel dryer and =
fibre. It's on a platform and has a 'hangman' pully system to lift it =
up. We even used my childhood stirrup irons for handles and the whole =
thing works brilliantly. =20
After we put the fibre on, using nichrome wire and home-made raku =
buttons, I sprayed on several coats of rigid-sizer (sorry I have no idea =
how to spell that).
The whole thing was a lot easier to build than I thought it would be. I =
do all my firings now on my own and its a piece of cake.
There are pics and descriptions on how we built it at my little freebie =
Raku website at
http://www.geocities.com/noggerup_raku
I hope this helps :)
Regards
Deborah


Subject: Raku kiln

Looking for some advice on a new raku kiln. The one i use now is too =
small
but I don't feel competent enough to build my own so was thinking about
splurging on something like a Laguna - i need something that's about 24" =
in
diameter & does not take a lot of muscle to lift. Anybody have yeahs or
nays they'd like to share before i plunk down all this money?

thanks -
Joanne

Deborah Bridle on sat 13 aug 05


Hi Marcia
Thanks for that. I got a bit of a shock and had to
quickly check out the pics on my site to see the
reflections. Good thing I was wearing clothes that
day LOL (thats a joke, by the way :)
It was really quite comical how we came to use that
dryer. I had a tape measure out and I was telling
my husband how I'd probably have to get someone
to fabricate me a stainless steel container by=20
"about this big by this big", and my husband drags
the dryer out from under my studio and says
"What. About this size?".
And there it was ! It was perfect, and it had been
under my studio for 10 years we've lived here for
and been left there by the previous owner. It even
had all the holes at the top in the right spots, to
hold the chains and pully system. We had to hammer
out the three ridges inside, but that was easy enough.
I don't know what brand of dryer it was.
Regards
Deborah





Date: Fri, 12 Aug 2005 05:42:24 -0600
From: Marcia Selsor
Subject: Re: Raku kiln/ Deborah

That is a beauty!! You can see yourself on the surface! What kind of
dryer was that?
Nice kiln.
Marcia
On Aug 12, 2005, at 3:42 AM, Deborah Bridle wrote:

> Hi Joanne :)
> My husband and I built our Raku kiln from a stainless steel dryer
> and fibre. It's on a platform and has a 'hangman' pully system to
> lift it up. We even used my childhood stirrup irons for handles and
> the whole thing works brilliantly.
> After we put the fibre on, using nichrome wire and home-made raku
> buttons, I sprayed on several coats of rigid-sizer (sorry I have no
> idea how to spell that).
> The whole thing was a lot easier to build than I thought it would
> be. I do all my firings now on my own and its a piece of cake.
> There are pics and descriptions on how we built it at my little
> freebie Raku website at
> http://www.geocities.com/noggerup_raku
> I hope this helps :)
> Regards
> Deborah

Marcia Selsor on sat 13 aug 05


Sounds very serendipitous! -meant for you no doubt. I'll keep an eye
out for such a wonder at our local recycling yard.
Good thing you were dressed!
Marci
On Aug 13, 2005, at 3:21 AM, Deborah Bridle wrote:

> Hi Marcia
> Thanks for that. I got a bit of a shock and had to
> quickly check out the pics on my site to see the
> reflections. Good thing I was wearing clothes that
> day LOL (thats a joke, by the way :)
> It was really quite comical how we came to use that
> dryer. I had a tape measure out and I was telling
> my husband how I'd probably have to get someone
> to fabricate me a stainless steel container by
> "about this big by this big", and my husband drags
> the dryer out from under my studio and says
> "What. About this size?".
> And there it was ! It was perfect, and it had been
> under my studio for 10 years we've lived here for
> and been left there by the previous owner. It even
> had all the holes at the top in the right spots, to
> hold the chains and pully system. We had to hammer
> out the three ridges inside, but that was easy enough.
> I don't know what brand of dryer it was.
> Regards
> Deborah
>
>
>
>
>
> Date: Fri, 12 Aug 2005 05:42:24 -0600
> From: Marcia Selsor
> Subject: Re: Raku kiln/ Deborah
>
> That is a beauty!! You can see yourself on the surface! What kind of
> dryer was that?
> Nice kiln.
> Marcia
> On Aug 12, 2005, at 3:42 AM, Deborah Bridle wrote:
>
>
>> Hi Joanne :)
>> My husband and I built our Raku kiln from a stainless steel dryer
>> and fibre. It's on a platform and has a 'hangman' pully system to
>> lift it up. We even used my childhood stirrup irons for handles and
>> the whole thing works brilliantly.
>> After we put the fibre on, using nichrome wire and home-made raku
>> buttons, I sprayed on several coats of rigid-sizer (sorry I have no
>> idea how to spell that).
>> The whole thing was a lot easier to build than I thought it would
>> be. I do all my firings now on my own and its a piece of cake.
>> There are pics and descriptions on how we built it at my little
>> freebie Raku website at
>> http://www.geocities.com/noggerup_raku
>> I hope this helps :)
>> Regards
>> Deborah
>>
>
> ______________________________________________________________________
> ________
> Send postings to clayart@lsv.ceramics.org
>
> You may look at the archives for the list or change your subscription
> settings from http://www.ceramics.org/clayart/
>
> Moderator of the list is Mel Jacobson who may be reached at
> melpots@pclink.com.
>
>

Irene F. Gulla on mon 19 dec 05


I have a raku kiln that I planned on finishing but its not going to
happen. I need surgery on my hand so it will be difficult for me to work
with the kiln. I had a sheet metal person design this for me and it needs a
burner and insulation blanket. Its approx 3ft by 3 ft,on wheels which sits
high about 12inches. Both sides open up so you can put your clay pieces in.
It cost me 125.00 to have it built but I would like to get 75.00. Its a
heavy duty mesh type metal kiln. I live on Cape Cod so if someone around
here is interested please contact me. Irene

Irene F.Gulla on sat 10 jun 06


A metal Raku Kiln that I started to put together is for sale for 75.00. I
paid 150.00 to have it made by a metal shop artist.All you need is to
insulate the 3ft x 3ft kiln with fiber blanket and attatch the burner unit.
The kiln is on 2 wheels so it can be moved around.I live on Cape Cod,Ma so
I can only sell it to someone that lives near by. It cannot be shipped.Irene

Craig Clark on wed 5 jul 06


Irene, a word of warning about Frank Colson. This guy is heavily into
self promotion. He will give you a little advice and then attempt to
sell you something. Don't bite. There is a planets worth of info on
ClayArt and it is free for the asking. You have already been answered by
some of the best in the business. Try what Marcia and Snail have
suggested. IF that doesn't work, post again. I and others will add some
other suggestions.
Hope this helps
Craig Dunn Clark
619 East 11 1/2 St
Houston, Texas 77008
(713)861-2083
mudman@hal-pc.org

Frank Colson wrote:

> Irene- This is your lucky day! Everything you ever dreamed of in a
> portable
> raku kiln. Meet ROCKY RAKU at www.R2D2u.com
> Frank Colson
> www.R2D2u.com
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: "Irene F.Gulla"
> To:
> Sent: Wednesday, July 05, 2006 1:47 PM
> Subject: raku kiln
>
>
>> I am looking for a small portable raku kiln.Does anyone know what
>> type is
>> best.I have made a kiln with the fiber blanket but that doesn't last too
>> long.I love to do raku firing.
>>
>> ______________________________________________________________________________
>>
>> Send postings to clayart@lsv.ceramics.org
>>
>> You may look at the archives for the list or change your subscription
>> settings from http://www.ceramics.org/clayart/
>>
>> Moderator of the list is Mel Jacobson who may be reached at
>> melpots@pclink.com.
>>
>
> ______________________________________________________________________________
>
> Send postings to clayart@lsv.ceramics.org
>
> You may look at the archives for the list or change your subscription
> settings from http://www.ceramics.org/clayart/
>
> Moderator of the list is Mel Jacobson who may be reached at
> melpots@pclink.com.
>

Irene F.Gulla on wed 5 jul 06


I am looking for a small portable raku kiln.Does anyone know what type is
best.I have made a kiln with the fiber blanket but that doesn't last too
long.I love to do raku firing.

Frank Colson on wed 5 jul 06


Irene- This is your lucky day! Everything you ever dreamed of in a portable
raku kiln. Meet ROCKY RAKU at www.R2D2u.com
Frank Colson
www.R2D2u.com
----- Original Message -----
From: "Irene F.Gulla"
To:
Sent: Wednesday, July 05, 2006 1:47 PM
Subject: raku kiln


>I am looking for a small portable raku kiln.Does anyone know what type is
> best.I have made a kiln with the fiber blanket but that doesn't last too
> long.I love to do raku firing.
>
> ______________________________________________________________________________
> Send postings to clayart@lsv.ceramics.org
>
> You may look at the archives for the list or change your subscription
> settings from http://www.ceramics.org/clayart/
>
> Moderator of the list is Mel Jacobson who may be reached at
> melpots@pclink.com.
>

Jeff Guin on thu 6 jul 06


Dear Irene,
Frank Colson can set you up with a unit called "Rocky Raku." A google search
will get you to his site. I built a fiber lined raku kiln earlier this year
and have fired it dozens of times. The only signs of wear have been the
discoloration of the garbage can I used. I have descriptions and photos on
my blog site of how I built mine.
Jeff Guin
Coon Valley, WI



http://mudwerks.blogspot.com
http://www.flickr.com/photos/mudhead99/







>From: "Irene F.Gulla"
>Reply-To: Clayart
>To: CLAYART@LSV.CERAMICS.ORG
>Subject: raku kiln
>Date: Wed, 5 Jul 2006 16:47:14 -0400
>
>I am looking for a small portable raku kiln.Does anyone know what type is
>best.I have made a kiln with the fiber blanket but that doesn't last too
>long.I love to do raku firing.
>
>______________________________________________________________________________
>Send postings to clayart@lsv.ceramics.org
>
>You may look at the archives for the list or change your subscription
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>Moderator of the list is Mel Jacobson who may be reached at
>melpots@pclink.com.

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Irene F.Gulla on thu 6 jul 06


I got the same impression when I heard it was a great day for me. Thanks for
the advice. Irene

Marcia Selsor on sat 4 nov 06


I think it is most common to split the flame although I have fired
mine with the swirl idea. I think it may also be a consideration as
to what type of pieces you are firing. When I fire my larger plaques
I use two burners, one on each end of a rectangular kile. When I fire
my kilns like the one you are building, I vary it, but mostly do the
split. with a target brick deflecting the flame. I also use shelves
with one inch holes in them. So my circulation is pretty good.

Marcia Selsor
http://marciaselsor.com



On Nov 4, 2006, at 7:50 PM, Geoffrey Barst wrote:

> I am building a fiber lined raku kiln and so far have made a
> cylinder of expanded metal. I plan to make it a "lift off" kiln and
> would like advice on whether the burner port is best situated so
> that the flame enters the kiln from the side pointing directly
> towards the middle and having a flame splitter to distribute it
> evenly or to aim the burner off center so that the wall of the kiln
> swirls the flame. The third option would be to place the burner
> underneath the kiln centrally aimed vertically. In the past I have
> fired a trash can kiln with a side port and the flame was split by
> a kiln shelf support which usually cracked. I am using a venturi
> burner. My concern about a vertically mounted burner would be that
> if the shelf it was aimed against was to crack the pots would fall.
>
> Also I am wondering about the advantages and disadvantages of
> doing the post firing reduction with the pots still on the kiln
> shelf as opposed to moving them to a separate reduction container.
>
> Geoff Barst
>
>

Geoffrey Barst on sat 4 nov 06


I am building a fiber lined raku kiln and so far have made a cylinder of =
expanded metal. I plan to make it a "lift off" kiln and would like =
advice on whether the burner port is best situated so that the flame =
enters the kiln from the side pointing directly towards the middle and =
having a flame splitter to distribute it evenly or to aim the burner off =
center so that the wall of the kiln swirls the flame. The third option =
would be to place the burner underneath the kiln centrally aimed =
vertically. In the past I have fired a trash can kiln with a side port =
and the flame was split by a kiln shelf support which usually cracked. =
I am using a venturi burner. My concern about a vertically mounted =
burner would be that if the shelf it was aimed against was to crack the =
pots would fall.=20

Also I am wondering about the advantages and disadvantages of doing the =
post firing reduction with the pots still on the kiln shelf as opposed =
to moving them to a separate reduction container.=20

Geoff Barst

Robert W. Anderson on sun 5 nov 06


Geoffrey,

I suggest you stay with the burner centered in
front with a splitter. Try using broken kiln
shelves (small pieces) to elevate each pot. Pot
should bridge two pieces. This helps distribute /
equalize the heat on each piece.
Placing the burner at an angle works great if
you're using a burner / blower combination. Great
swirl...!!!
I like reducing in a separate containers. Gives
me a chance to handle and inspect each pot.
Plus...you immediately start firing again...no
mess to clean up in your kiln. The very nature of
Raku allows one to be totally involved in each
phase. Don't take shortcuts...enjoy the moment.

Bob Anderson
Antigo, Wisconsin
rwanaa@charter.net

----- Original Message -----
From: "Geoffrey Barst"
To:
Sent: Saturday, November 04, 2006 7:50 PM
Subject: Raku kiln


I am building a fiber lined raku kiln and so far
have made a cylinder of expanded metal. I plan to
make it a "lift off" kiln and would like advice on
whether the burner port is best situated so that
the flame enters the kiln from the side pointing
directly towards the middle and having a flame
splitter to distribute it evenly or to aim the
burner off center so that the wall of the kiln
swirls the flame. The third option would be to
place the burner underneath the kiln centrally
aimed vertically. In the past I have fired a
trash can kiln with a side port and the flame was
split by a kiln shelf support which usually
cracked. I am using a venturi burner. My concern
about a vertically mounted burner would be that if
the shelf it was aimed against was to crack the
pots would fall.

Also I am wondering about the advantages and
disadvantages of doing the post firing reduction
with the pots still on the kiln shelf as opposed
to moving them to a separate reduction container.

Geoff Barst

__________________________________________________
____________________________
Send postings to clayart@lsv.ceramics.org

You may look at the archives for the list or
change your subscription
settings from http://www.ceramics.org/clayart/

Moderator of the list is Mel Jacobson who may be
reached at melpots@pclink.com.


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