David Snyder has been working on kilns for 30 years.
David began repairing kilns at age 15 in his parents’ ceramic shop. That was 30 years ago. Today he lives in Charlotte, North Carolina and services kilns in an eight-state area.
“Paragon is by far the most solid-built, virtually repair-free kiln made,” said David Snyder. “I can honestly say it’s the best kiln made in North America.
“Over the years Paragon has led the industry in innovation,” David said. “I’ve always found that everything Paragon did was followed by other kiln companies two or three years later. The best example is the digital controller. Other kiln companies introduced the controller as a brand new innovation after Paragon already had a controller for two or three years.
“As a professional repair person, I prefer selling a top quality kiln and then never having to worry about a warranty issue rather than selling a kiln of lesser quality and having to worry that I will have to make a trip for warranty service repair.
“I like the balance of firing in a Paragon kiln, and quality of construction,” he said. “Their control boxes are heavy duty. The new fall away easy access switch box is really nice. One thing I love about Paragon is the clear wiring diagrams for every kiln they make. Elements are pre-stretched with pre-bent corners, so there’s no worry about the element fitting or not. New element connectors come with every element.
“The switch boxes are made of thick steel. They don’t use cheap wire mesh on their switch boxes. The wire mesh is spot-welded and fails after a few years. Stands are heavy duty. The galvanized steel base plate is a great feature especially for setting up a new kiln when you have to shift the kiln on the stand. For kilns without a steel base plate, you have to lift the kiln completely off the stand to adjust the kiln even a quarter of an inch. Otherwise the stand will dig into the bare brick bottom.
“Another factor is element design. One production potter I know does literally day in day out cone 6 firings in his Paragon Viking-28. He had his kiln for right at three years before needing new elements. The element replacement in that kiln could not have been simpler.
“Everything Paragon does is normally a grade above what is the standard for the industry.”
Visit David’s website or send him email.