Merry Christmas from Paragon! (Photo by Kerry A. Adamo)
Recent Q&As: Kiln wash on the underside of shelves; the difference between kiln wash and kiln coating; kiln wash on a kiln bottom that has elements; kiln paint
A Christmas Greeting
Q. Is it okay to kiln wash the underside of a kiln shelf?
A. We recommend kiln washing only the top of the shelf for ceramic firings. Kiln wash applied to the underside of the shelf can flake off and land on glazed ware underneath. However, for a glass kiln with only one shelf, it would be okay to kiln wash both sides of the shelf provided the kiln does not have elements in the floor of the kiln.
Q. Is it okay to apply kiln wash to the lid of my glass kiln?
A. Please do not apply kiln wash to the lid. Kiln Wash protects the firebrick bottom and shelves from melted glass. When the melted glass is removed from a shelf, the kiln wash comes off with it. Since the kiln wash is designed to flake off, it can fall into the glass below when coated onto a lid. You can use liquid kiln coating to protect the lid surface. Applied in a thin coat, kiln coating seals the pores and hardens the surface of the firebricks. This helps in preventing loose particles from falling. Kiln coating is an entirely different product from kiln wash, though in liquid form they look the same.
Q. Should you kiln wash the bottom of a kiln that has elements in the bottom?
A. No. The kiln wash could get into an element groove and ruin an element. This could happen even if you are careful to mask off the element grooves while applying the kiln wash.
Q. What kind of paint do you use on your kilns?
A. We spray a durable high temperature, water-base finish onto the kiln cases and switch boxes. We chose water-base paint because of the low emissions during spraying. This creates a safer work environment for our employees and cuts down on pollution.
“I take nothing for granted. I now have only good days or great days.” --Lance Armstrong
From the north Jamie Gray of the Calgary Warm Glass Guild wrote, “Arnold, I thought you might be interested to know that we’ve got a foot of snow on the ground here and it’s COOOLD, but very beautiful. And as you say in your Kiln Pointer newsletter, working with a warm kiln is an excellent way to spend a cold afternoon. Merry Christmas!”
I grew up in Calgary, Alberta, Canada, where Jamie lives, and remember the deep snowdrifts at Christmas. We rarely have white Christmases here in Mesquite, but I enjoy the cutout snowflake decorations hanging from the wall partitions and the lights that shine from the tree in the Paragon office.
The blue lights on the house across the street from mine glitter in the night air. This morning the haze on the freezing windows spread the pinpoint lights into glowing blue orbs.
From the south Nora Bay wrote, “From sunny Mexico, I send my very best wishes for the Holidays and New Year to you and the Paragon staff. I always read Kiln Pointers with great interest. I have been using my kiln for fused glass and recently for firing painted porcelain. I just can’t live with out it! Muchos abrazos!”
Thank you for reading the Kiln Pointers during 2008. On behalf of all of us at Paragon, I wish you a Joyous Christmas and a Happy New Year, wherever you may be.
With best wishes,
Arnold Howard Paragon Industries, L.P. – Better Designed Kilns 2011 South Town East Blvd. Mesquite, Texas 75149-1122 Voice: 972-288-7557 & 800-876-4328 / Fax: 972-222-0646 firstname.lastname@example.org / www.paragonweb.com
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Copyright 2008, by Paragon Industries, L.P.