[Clayart] FW: Clayart discussion of electric reduction

Vince Pitelka vpitelka at dtccom.net
Wed Dec 23 13:04:45 EST 2015

Keith Gordon sent me the following message off-list and said that he had been having trouble posting to Clayart, so I am forwarding his message.  Finally a testimonial from someone who actually does this.
- Vince

-----Original Message-----
From: Keith Gordon [mailto:cageycreate at optonline.net] 
Sent: Wednesday, December 23, 2015 6:23 AM
To: Vince Pitelka <vpitelka at dtccom.net>
Subject: Clayart discussion of electric reduction

I often have trouble posting messages on Clayart, so if my posting fails to appear, here is my experience for what its worth.

I fire one of my kilns as a "hybrid" electric & propane reduction. It is an older conventional electric kiln modified with a hole in the floor and lid, and the interior coated with ITC (both brick & coils).  The process has been discussed by Mel Jacobson in the past on Clayart.  I fire electric to about 1600 F then place a bunsen burner in the bottom opening, with the air mixer on minimum.  I open the propane valve to 5psi and the heat inside the kiln ignites the gas instantly (don't need to light a flame on the burner).  I use a kiln shelf on the top opening to regulate the flue draft to get about 3 inches of flame when I open a peep hole. This produces a good reducing atmosphere which affects both clay body and glaze.  With the addition of the propane to the electric elements, the firing proceeds rapidly to 2200-2300 F. Then I shut off the gas, remove the burner, plug the bottom hole with fiber blanket and close the flu with the damper shelf.

I've never tried acetylene, and don't want to. LPG barbecue tanks are readily available, easily transportable, safer to handle and more than sufficient for several of my firings.

Keith Gordon
CageyCreate at optonline.net

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