Our members Nick and Lela will introduce you to some of the ins and outs of firing Shirley, our gas kiln. Every kiln is different, but there are several common principles that must be learned in order to fire any manual gas kiln. During this cone 10 reduction firing we welcome you to put your own work into the kiln (details here), or just participate in the workshop to see what it is all about!
Students may attend any and all portions of this workshop that they would like to. The experience is designed for you to drop in during the specified time windows, but it is not required that you attend all parts. The more time you spend at Radius during the firing, the more you will learn. Since our kiln is new, and there are many variables to each firing, its hard to predict exactly what times we will reach each stage of the firing. All time windows are our best guesses!
Dates and (loose) timeline:
Friday, Oct 14th @ 5pm: Loading begins. Arrive at 5pm for an explanation and a demonstration of the beginning of loading the kiln. Typically, loading takes takes 3-4 hours, and you are welcome to stay for as much or as little of this process as you want. After loading, the door is bricked up and the burners are turned on to warm the kiln up overnight.
Saturday, Oct 15th : Firing begins at 7am and (should be) going into reduction around 10am: The kiln will be turned on at 7am (you are welcome to join if you are interested in seeing this part), and then will heat up for a few hours. During this time, the objective is to keep the temperature even and to go from an oxidation to a reduction firing atmosphere around 10am (this is when it gets exciting so join around 10am for this action). Getting the kiln into reduction is not always easy and is affected by many factors (ex: the weather and how the kiln was loaded). There will be an explanation on how temperature and other details help to decide the next steps for adjustments, and there will be an explanation of the difference between oxidation and reduction.
Saturday, Oct 15th @7-9(ish)pm: Final stages of the firing process. The kiln has been turned up and adjusted gradually over the course of the day for approximately 12 hours. Things are heating up and getting exciting! There will be an explanation of the steps leading up to this point, and tactics for encouraging reduction at peak temperatures/specific times. It is hard to predict exactly how long the firing will take before it reaches temperature. The firing could be done as early as 7 but will likely take a while longer.
Tuesday, Oct 18th @5pm: Unload. We get to unload the kiln and see all the fruits of our labor! We will interpret and discuss the results of the firing, and those of you who have work in the kiln can take home your goodies.
Workshop objective: You will walk away having a broader knowledge of what ^10 reduction firing is, and the difference between gas and electric firing.
Learning principles :
– How to load a gas kiln for best results
– Cones/ heatwork- how to use them and what they do
– What reduction means- how it works and what it does
– Cone 10- how it is different than cone 6
– How to make decisions and adjustments while firing a gas kiln
– How to interpret the results of the firing by assessing the unloaded pieces.
We are excited to spread the knowledge and share the magic of reduction firing!