Sunday, December 11, 2011

Winter firing

Kiln loaded up
Well, it's not officially winter, but it sure felt like winter today! I found a good internet connection at the place where I was firing a salt kiln today and put numerous photos on Facebook of the firing. For those of you not on Facebook, I thought I would share here too!
I loaded the kiln yesterday and as it was a gas kiln, candled it overnight. I arrived early this morning in order to turn it up and get things going. When the kiln is cool (below 2000 Fahrenheit) you can make out pieces pretty well and see how things are going.
This photo was taken of the bottom of the kiln at around 1400 Fahrenheit. You can make out the side of a pitcher on the right, an ornament behind the cones, and the rim of a small flowerpot behind the ornament.

This photo was taken of the top of the kiln at around 1600 Fahrenheit. It is hard for my camera to adjust with the higher temperatures, particularly in the top where it always seems to be cloudier than the bottom. I think this has to do with the salt which has begun to flux off of the walls, creating the cloudiness.
This was my first firing in which the top of the kiln was cooler, or behind in getting to temperature, than the bottom. It always seems to be the case that the top will soar past the bottom, or the bottom will stall out, but I think because I placed a short shelf below the top shelf, this caused a hiccup in the temperature rise to the top.

Ornaments getting ready to be fired
I made a few ornaments this go-around to see how they would turn out.

This is a good shot of the top of an ornament just after I finished the firing. If you look closely you can see the orange-peel surface of the salt on the top of the ornament, as well as the rim of the small flowerpot behind it.

Finally, I said goodnight to the salty beast and will be back to unload on Wednesday!

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