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Annealing oven


#1

I find that I anneal my copper often. Annealing is a major consumer
of fuel. I use a torch and just go to it. Just lighting and adjusting
the torch uses a lot of fuel. Wire is particularly inefficient, I
believe, since I don’t like to coil it up to soften it. I have a
vague vision of an oven that can be fired up and be available, and
will stay hot when not in use, and quickly raised to annealing
temperature. Probably controlled by a thermostat. Is there any merit
to this idea? Is it something already commonly used? Or can the torch
be the way to go, and use the right materials and the right shapes to
increase efficiency?


#2

$B"c (B I have a vague vision of an oven that can be fired up and be
available, and will stay hot when not in use, and quickly raised to
annealing temperature. Probably controlled by a thermostat. $B"d (B

Barney, my understanding is that a programmable kiln used for PMC
could be used this way (tho I have not done this with mine).

  • Lorraine

#3

The Paragon Silver Clay kilns could be used for this purpose. I keep
mine hot all day for pennies. This series features a one-piece
ceramic fiber muffle with the coils embedded, and heats so quickly
you might not even need to keep one at temp - mine goes from 70 to
1500 (Fahrenheit) in about 15 minutes. They include a digital
controller for precise temperature control, and are great for
annealing, enameling and glass fusing in addition to silver clay.

Because the elements are embedded in the walls of the kiln, the
walls themselves glow red hot. Metal and glass should not be allowed
to touch the kiln walls or bottom. Do NOT coat the inside with kiln
wash - it voids the warranty. Instead, line the bottom and 1/2" up
the sides with some 1/8" ceramic fiber paper to protect the kiln
against inadvertent spillage of enamel, molten metal, etc.

Most of the Paragon Silver Clay kilns sell in the $750 US range.
Here’s a link:

http://www.ganoksin.com/gnkurl/1gu

If you want something cheaper (in the $400 US range), other
manufacturers of small glass annealing kilns make versions without
digital controllers. They provide a temperature readout dial and you
control them manually with a rheostat knob same as your cooking
stove.

Most are made of fire brick and will be slower to heat, but cost
around the same to run. Others are metal cases like toolboxes or
mailboxes lined with ceramic fiber. These heat and cool quickly but
most have a useful upper temperature range of about 1000 Fahrenheit,
due to the thin walls.

Elizabeth Johnson