"Is it possible to buy some L&L hard ceramic element holders from you guys as I am building a kiln and LOVE your holders!!! if so, how long are they? how much per length do they cost."Answer:
You can certainly buy our holders. Just see the parts list for details and prices. However, while it is not impossible to use them on another kiln, you may find it difficult. We route out the firebrick with a special tool that is not commercially available. You can see the shape of this if you look at a photo of one of the holders. Potentially, however, you could route out a simple rectangular groove in your firebrick and then cement the holder in place.
It is very difficult to do this and we offer no support for it. The control systems on many older L&L manual kilns were built right into the kiln and you would need to add a control, contactors, etc. and then rewire the whole kiln.
We recommend talking to Orton if you are interested in that possibility.
The e18S and e18S-3 have an amperage draw of 23.9 amps. It is possible to supply this with a 30 amp plug. This would be a 6 foot cord and the various plug options that are available for the Liberty-Belle kilns are available for this kiln. NEMA 14-30 or NEMA 14-50 would not have an upcharge.
These 30 amp cords will also work on JD18 and JD18-3 kilns.
This does not affect the c-MET-us listing.
Question: I use only half shelves. I'm loaded in preparation for a Long Bisque load, but before I start the kiln on Wednesday night, I want to know whether or not it is okay to use kiln cloth in the firing chamber. Two half shelves are not exactly even at the seam and I have a vessel sink to fire. I solved the slight unevenness by using scraps of kiln cloth (don't know what else it's called*) on the shelf to place the sink on. It seems very stable now, but since then I have not used more than just a wad of the "fabric" inside a kiln before, and not inside my nice, new electronic L&L. The kiln cloth is the material used to line the inside of a raku kiln, I think. A previous teacher gave me a sheet of it to place between the bottom of an old kiln I acquired once and the base it sits on. The pieces I used to put the vessel sink on are the triangular trimmings from that sheet.
Answer: "Kiln Cloth" is not a technical name that one can be certain of. Here is how to think about this: Have you used this material in the kiln at the temperatures that you are about to go to?
It is probably some sort of ceramic fiber material. There are various grades of this - all of which go to typical bisque temperatures (1800 Deg F or so). Probably the worst that could happen is that it may disintegrate at a high temperature and lose any structural integrity which could pose a problem for the stability of your load. That ASSUMES it is ceramic fiber. However, what if it is fiberglass? Then it will melt and be a whole lot worse. Be certain this material can take your bisque temperature.
Question: The school district is looking to purchase a kiln (K-E-23T3/22, 11000W, 208v, 3phase, 40 amp). The cut sheet given to me suggests power from a Delta transformer, we do not have a delta power transformer feeding the panel, we have a Wye transformer configuration feeding the panel for power. Would it be ok to feed the kiln from a Wye configuration instead of a Delta configuration, and should we note on the order form "Electrical Service Confirmation" form that we have Wye transformer configuration not Delta?
Answer: The three hot legs of your Wye outputs will feed the three hot legs of our Delta inputs. We do not use the Neutral in these kilns. L1 to L2 will be 208 volts, L1 to L3 will be 208 volts, L2 to L3 will 208 volts.
The controller can only tell you how many times a firing has been started since the kiln was brand new. There is no way to reset this counter other than to send it to the manufacturer to be re-calibrated. If you want to just check the counter, you can press Review Program. When it reads FIRE on the display, the next number displayed is how many times it started a firing.
NOTE: We do a test firing of the control before it leaves the factory so it will not come to you with no counts on the control.
Although it is possible to do this you would have to buy a new control panel for the kiln. They same is true for Easy-Fire XT and eQuad-Pro kilns.
For all Easy-Load kilns (except the EL3048): With the door all the way open the kiln will go through a 34-1/2" wide door.
Removing the door is not a good idea. These kilns are not easily disassembled nor are they meant to be. The door of a EL2436 weighs over 250 lbs. When we hang the door during the manufacturing process we use a forklift to support the weight and four men to get the door into position and bolt it to the kiln body. The brick in the door is fragile, like all fire brick, and will crack or chip easily. Then there are adjustments made to the hinge (there are slots in the hinge plates) to make sure the door is seated properly to achieve a good seal. Without a good seal, the heat will escape through the top and eventually corrode the top plates and tadpole seal of the kiln. Then there are the wiring issues. The wires that power the door elements would have to be removed and replaced properly. If the kiln is not rewired properly there would be serious problems with the kiln shorting out, burning out the control or in a worst case scenario, create a fire hazard. If the door opening is smaller than 34-1/2" (which is a standard size door) then we suggest that it might be less costly for you to have a carpenter open up the door rather than the significant costs involved in repairing a damaged kiln. The repairs to the kiln are not covered under warranty if the kiln is damaged in the course of moving at your location, disassemble or reassembly.
"I have a graduate student who is working with slip dip and burning out fabric. Can this be done safely in our L & L Electric kilns? Are there any concerns or dangers to the kiln? I am comfortable doing the burnout in our gas kilns, but she often has small works and wants to do just one small piece and it seems a waste of gas to fire up a gas kiln. She has done the burnout in her electric kilns at home, but since she moved here for graduate school, her kilns are not hooked up.
A student here (before my time) caused a rather large fire and did extensive damage to a big electric just a couple of weeks after it was purchased. I heard fire was coming out of every screw hole. The electric all had to be replaced, so I'm a bit nervous about burning out in an electric."Answer:
The answer is that it is a matter of degree. If you put a serious amount of combustibles in your kiln then you will get a fire. If you are doing some burn out - like binder burn out then it is probably OK if you have the kiln well-vented.
One suggestion is to restrict the amount of air that can get to the carbon while it is heating by putting it in a covered sagger. You want some air of course but by keeping it covered it can't get too out of control if it wants to go up in flames.
So - some is okay - keep the amount in the kiln at any one time as small as possible - just be careful and be sure you are there and handy with a fire extinguisher! (just in case).
Yes - the Quad element system features really large diameter elements and lots of element surface area. The OD of the element is almost 1/2" vs. a more typical 1/3" found in other brands. The wire gauge is typically 12, 13 or 14 gauge with very low watt density.
So far our customer's experience has shown that, even in very demanding applications like crystalline glaze firing, A1 standard alloy elements work great. We have seen customers get over 130 firings with the Quad system using just A1 alloy.
APM alloy would be icing on the cake.
There are three issues that must be addressed with venting a kiln.
Safety with fumes: you need to get any carbon monoxide and other fumes generated by the ceramic process out of the kiln and the room.
Safety with heat: you need to remove heat from the kiln room. You must have ambient ventilation in a small room for heat and to remove fumes that may not be fully removed by the kiln vent. If you have a very large room that can dissipate heat and trace fumes than you may not need ambient ventilation.
Kiln Performance: The ceramic process will generate corrosive fumes, steam and acids from the combination of chemicals and water in the clay heated to high temperatures. This can be extremely corrosive to the kiln itself.
The Vent-Sure is designed to remove fumes that are generated in the kiln from the kiln and therefore from the room. The Vent-Sure downdraft kiln vent does not remove enough heat from a small room to be used for ambient ventilation.
If you have a good overhead vent hood you may discharge the output of the Vent-Sure into that hood. However an overhead vent or a room vent alone will not address the kiln performance issue. In fact this can be such a problem corroding the kiln and reducing element life that we reflect this in our warranty.
See this for general information about venting.
See this for how to calculate ambient ventilation requirements.
See our installation checklist for more information.
See this caution: Ventilation is Essential.
See this caution: Sprinkler Cautions.
I want to purchase an electric, cone 10 kiln for hobby use. I want to store and use it in my garage. I am not concerned about the fumes as I have a door with a screen door that I can leave open during firing. Is this adequate? I am concerned about flammability with my gas water heater pilot light. I could position the kiln away from that but the doorway is near the water heater and so the fumes could be drawn toward that exit. I also keep my car in the garage but would not take it in or out during firing. Is there a fire risk with that? It is a newer car, has no gas or oil leaks. It is a large garage, 2 car plus workshop area so I could park the car away from the kiln while using it. Could you please advise me on the best way to make this work safely?Answer
Lets take this step by step.
1) You are fine with any fumes coming out of the kiln in a well ventilated place - as far as your own safety is concerned.
2) There are no flammable fumes coming from the kiln so you don't need to worry about creating a hazard with an open flame.
3) The only real potential hazard is the kiln as a potential ignition source because the case gets hot. As long as there is nothing overtly flammable - i.e. spilled oil, gasoline, etc and as long as you keep any flammable items like wood and paper at least 36" away from the kiln you should have nothing special to worry about.
Question: We are getting ready to move long distance and wondered how we can pack/box/crate our kilns so they are protected in transit.
Answer: The way we pack them in the factory would be rather difficult without specialized boxes and foam-in-place machines. We would suggest packing it on a wooden skid with 1" Styrofoam on the bottom and then in between each layer. Put the rings down first, then the top, and then using some styrofoam spacers, put the bottom on top of the top (the last thing at the top should be the kiln bottom slab). Then wrap everything tightly in stretch wrap (70 gauge is fine) so it is one integrated solid mass. Then strap the whole mass to the skid protecting the pressure of the strapping at the top with some wood. This assumes you are moving this in a moving van and not by common carrier - which would require much more packaging than what we are describing.
The Vent-Sure is controlled with a manual on/off switch on the cord of the vent. You could also plug it into a switched circuit if you want to. It can be on the whole time the kiln is firing.VENT CONTROL
We also sell a vent control that works on any kiln with a DyaTrol or Genesis.
We get asked this question a lot. We don't have any real way of knowing. A kiln, or any possession for that matter, is valued at whatever someone is willing to pay for it. That being said, you can find the price of a comparable new kiln on this web site and then discount it at least 50% or more depending on condition. It depends completely on how much it was used and the condition of the different parts. In good shape- i.e. minimal corrosion, clean and flexible wiring, newish elements, no brick damage you might expect to get maybe 50% of a new kiln depending on the market and the age of the kiln in terms of technology (i.e. manual vs. automatic control). Itemize the condition of the case, the interior and the wiring and discount from there. If wiring has to be replaced then discount it another 25% from list. If elements have to be replaced then discount at least 15% from list. If the brick interior need extensive repair then it is worth little or nothing (one reason L&L kilns hold up in value, by the way).
All that being said we have heard of people buying used kilns for no more than $200.00 to $300.00.
When it comes to garage sales, a good rule of thumb is to sell the item for a third of what you paid for it originally.
Listing on Ebay and Craig's List and searching Ebay and Craig's List is also a good idea. Also talk to any local pottery shops or art centers where pottery classes take place. There may be students who would be interested.
VENT CONTROL OPTION
We do not have any specific engineering recommendations for installing a vent hood over a kiln. However, as a general principle you will want to have the vent hood as close to the kiln as practical to maximize the focus of the vent suction. The countervailing factor is the height of the kiln lid when raised and any ergonomic factors such as does the vent hood present a bump hazard for personnel. A typical installation for a 27" high kiln might be a little over 6 feet from the floor.
In addition to a hood vent you may also want to consider putting in one of our Vent-Sure Downdraft Vent systems and expelling the output of that into the hood.
- All L&L top-loading kilns are sectional.Front-Loading kilns are not sectional.
- Sectional construction makes it easy to move, set up and disassemble the kilns for maintenance.
- On Jupiter and Davinci kilns the sections are completely separate from the control panel. Each section has its own plug that plugs into a special receptacle in the control panel. This makes it easy to disconnect the control panel and send it to the factory for expert service if ever necessary.
- On Easy-Fire, School-Master, Quad-Pro, and Liberty-Belle kilns the panel attaches to all sections but is designed to be easily removable.
- Because of this unusual ease of assembling and disassembling our Jupiter and Davinci kilns some people over the years have used this feature to expand or contract firing capacity as needed.
- This can be useful for firing small loads while still maintaining a larger firing capacity.
- It can also be useful for loading the kiln. This can still be done but there are some considerations to be aware of.
- The old style standard hinge used on the J18 and J18X is attached to the top section only. The hinge pin easily removes by removing a clip-on cotter pin. It is quite easy with this style hinge to take the top off and then remove one or two sections. The sections are not held together with latches but rely on gravity to keep them together.
- The “Easy-Lift, Easy-Load” spring loaded counter balanced hinge is standard on the larger 10-sided and 12-sided kilns. This is a great hinge design but it is not as easy to take apart.
- One of the nice features of this hinge is that it connects the upper three sections (or two sections and the bottom) together into one unified assembly. Again – a nice feature - and the reason the lid can sit so far back when loading the kiln - but one that does not lend itself to being pulled apart.
- The control panels on four and five section kilns are also attached to two sections.
- Our Pull-Apart option offers a solution to customers who definitely want to assemble and disassemble their kilns frequently. It offers the freedom to move the sections over their work.
- To get around the above issues we offer a variation in our Jupiter line, which is meant just for those people who definitely want to assembly and disassemble their kilns often.
- This option consists of not putting a hinge on the kiln at all, having four handles on the top, and mounting the control panel on a floor stand like we do on the DaVinci control panels. The sections are not tied together. We provide 45” long cords on all the sections. There is no charge for this option.
- See here for more information on Pull-Apart Kilns.
- The DaVinci kilns all come with the standard spring loaded counterbalance system.
- This system actually supports the door independent from the kiln sections with the exception that two stabilizing arms are attached to either the second section or the third section. All the sections above these stabilizing arms can be easily removed from the kiln without disassembling the door system. This is primarily useful for loading.
- However, if you do want to adjust the size of the kiln all that is required in addition to removing a section or two is to loosen up the clamps holding the door assembly to the counterbalance assembly and adjust it up or down.
- You can order a DaVinci with the stabilizing arms attached to the second section (this is the way it has to come for the two-section kilns). This would allow you to remove the third section. However, only two sections can be above the section with the stabilizing arms. Therefore a DaVinci kiln with stabilizing arms on the second section can only be a maximum of four sections high (36” high).
- The DynaTrol is easily programmable to allow for one, two, or three-zone operation.
- So if you had a three section kiln like the JD230 and wanted to fire the kiln as a JD23 with two sections you would simple plug the two sections into two of the receptacles on the panel and program the DynaTrol for two-zone operation.
- For larger kilns like the JD230 or JD2927, if you anticipate making the kiln larger, you should special order a larger control panel (five or six zones). For instance if you want to buy a JD2927 now but may want to expand this to a JD2936 in the future you should buy a larger panel with five circuits. You can see the price differential in our parts list. The differential between the two panels is added to the price of the new kiln. For instance if you are buying a JD2927 with a JD2945 five circuit panel you would subtract the price of the JD2927 three circuit panel from the price of the JD2945 five circuit panel and add this difference to the price of the kiln.
- The same principle applies for DaVinci panels. However, on DaVinci kilns the size of the control box is physically sized for either five or six circuits (the six circuit boxes are for five section kilns with powered bottoms). This means that you could have the factory add a circuit in your current box in the future without making any investment now. This gets a bit more complicated if you are getting or planning to get a powered bottom with an automatic kiln. This is because the wiring for the powered bottom is slightly different on automatic kilns (i.e. where it gets its control output from) and you would not plug a regular section into the powered bottom circuit or vise-versa.
- Consult factory if you have specific questions.
There are variety of opinions about this. It depends on how much moisture is in the clay. If you detect moisture on a mirror coming out of the peepholes even if the vent is on then you need to do more to get the moisture out of the kiln. Prop the lid up for the first few hundred degrees about 1/2" with a piece of clay or ceramic.
I have an Easy Fire kiln. When I fire it I lock the lid with the lid latch. A friend recently told me that this is incorrect and could damage the lid. Can you tell me if the lid should be locked during firing.Answer:
The latch is there to be used to lock the lid in the front - otherwise it will want to rise slightly while firing. It is still free to move in the back to relieve stress from expansion.
Some people decide they need to fire their kiln unattended. Often this is at night.
All L&L Kilns that are over 48 amps are direct wired. That means that there is a power connection block inside the control panel. You will need to have an electrician run a cable or wires in a conduit or flexible liquid tight conduit from your power supply (circuit breaker panel or disconnect switch) into the kiln control panel. Because of all the the possible variations L&L does not provide any of the materials or cables for this.
- A 'GFCI' or Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter, sometimes called a 'GFI' or Ground Fault Interrupter is part of either an outlet or a circuit breaker.
- It is typically required for added safety on any circuit that may come in contact with water, like outdoors, or kitchen, or bathroom.
- A GFCI measures the amperage on both the hot and the neutral wires in a 120 volt circuit, or it measures amperage on both hot wires in a 240 volt circuit.
- If there is more than about a 5 milliamp difference (5 thousandths of an amp difference) between the amperage readings of the wires the GFCI acts like a circuit breaker and shuts the power off.
- In a kiln, the firebrick is not a perfect insulator, so a tiny bit of the current leaks from the elements to the safety ground and unbalances the current in the 2 hot wires.
- The resistance of the brick goes down as the temperature goes up so the kiln may be able to start a firing and but the GFCI would probably trip as the temperature went up.
- Above 1700 F is when the firebrick has a significant drop in resistance.
- Due to the nature of the firebrick in a kiln, GFCI protected circuits are not recommended for use with the power circuits in electric kilns without special element insulators.
- According to the the National Electrical Code electrical equipment needs branch fusing when the total amperage draw is higher than 48 amps.
- Branch fusing means that each element circuit is separately fused. There are two cartidge type fuses in a fuse holder for each element circuit. We fuse right before the power contactor.
- This requirement also coincides with the use of direct wiring of the kiln. All kilns that we make that are above 48 amps do not have a plug or cord. They must be direct wired.
Where is Branch Fusing Used?
- All DaVinci kilns
- High powered Jupiter kilns
- eQuad-Pro kiln
- Some JH Series Kilns
- Some Easy-Fire XT kilns
- Some eFL Kilns
- Easy-Load Front Loading Kilns
The Easy-Fire and School-Master kilns are very similar. The Easy-fire kilns are our flagship kiln series. Many thousands are installed around the world. However, as great as it is, some users have a need for a simpler controller and do not require the complexity of the three-zone control; this is why we designed the School-Master kiln series. It is extremely simple, yet has all of the durability and ease-of-use much like our fantastic "Easy-Lift, Easy-Load" spring-loaded lid.Easy-Fire
- DynaTrol control with 24 keys, 4 easy programs and 6 user-defined programs.
- Zone control.
- More sizes.
- All elements are the same value.
- Three-year warranty.
- Most models are listed to Cone 10.
- One-Touch™ control features extremely intuitive operation with an easy to configure Bisque and Glaze program.
- Single Zone.
- Two basic sizes - 7 cubic feet and 10 cubic feet.
- Graded elements for uniformity rather than zone control.
- Five-year warranty.
- Limited to Cone 6 even though it has the power to go to Cone 10 on some configurations. This prevents most problems caused by normal wear and tear.
This latch should be closed/used during firing of the kiln. We provide it because the lid is light enough with the spring hinge so that it could rise slightly during firing.
If you prefer the lid to be heavier you can adjust the spring tension using the alternate slot in the back, or remove one of the springs or change the way the the spring is installed.
On the Easy-Fire e28T-3 kiln (and School-Master SM28T-3) you will find the cone rating is limited by the KW of the kiln. On single phase kilns, because of the 48 amp restriction before you get into more expensive branch fusing, all of the kiln manufacturers limit the KW to around 11.5. However, when you have three phase available it is possible to increase the KW of the kiln without going over the 48 amp restriction. We take advantage of that possibility while it seems that some other kiln companies do not.
There is an electrical code rule in the US that allows you to have any appliance that draws 48 amps or less not have what are called "branch fusing". Branch fusing is where there are fuses for each separate circuit in the kiln. We do this on our larger Jupiter kilns, DaVinci kilns and eQuad-Pro kilns for instance. The extra fusing makes the control panel larger and the kiln more expensive. Also the 40 amp limitation allows us to provide the kiln with a 50 amp plug which most people find convenient over direct electrical hook up.
Also, a 48 amp fuse requires a 60 amp circuit breaker because the National Electrical Code states that you must have 125% higher fuse or circuit breaker size for the device than the amperage of the device.
All Easy-Fire kilns use this 48 amp code restriction, so they do not have branch fusing. For all models, except the single phase e28T kilns, 48 amps is enough power in the kiln to allow the kiln to reach cone 10. In the single phase e28T, however, the number of watts per square inch of inside kiln surface area is much less than in the other models and is not enough to reach Cone 10. This is also true for the same reasons in our competitors' kilns. (See here for more information)
If you have three phase available we are able to increase the number of watts while still staying below the amperage limitation. (By the way not every kiln manufacturer takes advantage of this ability of three phase to carry more watts).
The other recommendation, if you need Cone 10 operation and can't get 3 phase (which is hard to get in a residential installation) and want a 10 cubic foot kiln, is to get an eQ28T (eQuad-Pro) or a JD2927 (Jupiter). The single phase versions of these kilns will easily go to Cone 10. You will need a larger electrical circuit to run these kilns however.