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Pottery/Small Holes In Kiln Lid

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Question
Our kiln lids have a small hole 3/4 of an inch in both kilns, as we read the manual it does not address this issue anywhere. We have been using DK 1029-2 almost daily without any problems. We are just beginning to use EA 1020-2 and the Automatic switch confused us a bit. But my question is whether we should replace the lids?

thanks you,
Kitty

Answer
Dear Kitty,

    Thank you for your recent question. There should be no reason for any holes in the kiln lid. If these are used kilns, then the previous owner may have put holes in it to remove carbon if the kiln was used for reduction purposes. The holes may also be there because of accidental puncture. In any case, there is no reason they should be there.

    The problem with having even small holes in the kiln lid is that the kiln is having to fire longer to reach maturing temperature or cone and this puts unneeded stress on the elements, as well as uses increased amounts of electricity. Secondly, the ware closest to the holes are not reaching maturing temperature, even though they may visually look like they are.

    You can continue to use the kilns as they are, but you are using more electricity than needed, i.e., costing you more to run the kilns, and there will be shortened life on the elements. However, I recommend you purchase some kiln patch and patch the holes.

    To use the kiln patch, you will want to use some ground up bisque in the patch paste so that it will create a binding material. Then patch the hole from the top and bottom. Once dry, you can fire the kiln normally. The patch will seal and set permanently upon the firing of the kiln.

    I hope this answers your question. If you have further questions, please feel free to contact me at any time. I am always at your service.

Sincerely,
Ms. Ti Phillips
www.earthstokenfire.com

Pottery

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Ti Phillips

Expertise

Will answer any questions on hand building, wheel, glaze, firing. Speciality questions to include those in glaze calculation and development, firing techniques. Please do not send questions on identifying pottery. Although I would love to add this to my question topics, I have a retreat to run as well as the studio and volunteering on AllExperts, and therefore do not have the available time to research indentification and marks. Thank you for understanding.

Experience

Experience includes 30 years in pottery design and education. Have taught online and studio classes worldwide for the last 20 years. Own a pottery retreat specializing in firing techniques. Have 12 years solid experience in glaze calculation and formulation as well as problem solving in glaze chemistry. I am the first potter in the United States to have developed a complete package of pottery equipment blueprints for a studio. The blueprints include wheels, kilns, studio furniture, wedgeboards, raku kilns, slab rollers, ball mills and studio tools.

Organizations
Alliance of Pottery Artists Worldwide Association

Publications
Ceramic Industry - PPP Wyndstryder Press - Pottery Journal

Education/Credentials
University of Sciences and Art's of Oklahoma, studied under Professor Jaymes Dudding.

Awards and Honors
Potter of the year with APAWA, various awards for showmanship and design.

Past/Present Clients
Available upon request.

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