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Bead door on a new kiln


#1

I’m looking at purchasing a new kiln. My used one won’t do PMC. If I
don’t plan on doing beads, is there any other use for a bead door? I
do enameling with my current kiln.

Bob


#2

I don’t think you need a bead door. I got a programmable Paragon
which I use for multiple tasks–wax burnout, as well as enameling,
and am getting along just fine without the bead door.

Alma


#3
I don't think you need a bead door. I got a programmable Paragon
which I use for multiple tasks--wax burnout, as well as enameling,
and am getting along just fine without the bead door. 

Wouldn’t a bead door help to view progress without opening the kiln
door? When I open the door of my kiln to check the enameling
progress the temperature drops hundreds of degrees, and if I’m a
little too early that adds a whole lot of time to the firing and
throws off any sense I might develop about how long things should
take.

I know all the enameling experts say you get to know how long to
fire, but all I can say to that is I’m still waiting for that to
happen. Check too soon, the temperature drops too much. Check too
late, some colors turn to rubbish. Being able to see without dropping
the temperature would be really nice, it seems to me.

Neil A.


#4

Neil, the degree of the drop in temperature depends on your kiln. I
have 3 kilns that I use for enameling. My big Vcella (a real
workhorse), holds the heat very well, and only drops a few degrees
when I open the door. My little Satellite burnout kiln, does not
hold the heat will and will drop several hundred degrees. My Paragon,
holds the heat well,and only drops a few degrees. So, it does depend
on the kiln. I often open the door to make a visual check of how my
enamel is progressing and have never found any drop in temperature
to be a problem—even the big drop which occurs with the Satellite
kiln. It just takes longer to recoup than the others… My own
experience is that I get along fine without the bead door, but if it
gives you more comfort to be able to see what is going on, then you
might be happier with the bead door.

Alma


#5

Paragon offers an option of having a door with a window on many of
their models. I have it on one of my enameling kilns and you are
correct–it saves me from opening the door to check progress and
losing heat. I can see as soon as the enamel flows. A bead door would
be a small operable door on the bottom of the main door. It makes it
quick and easy to insert the hot bead on a mandrel and if the mandrel
is long, it can still stick out at the bottom of the door.

Since enamel pieces are supported on some sort of trivet, I think a
bead door would be too low to be able to peek in and check the
enamel’s progress. If you are planning to do mostly enameling, the
window option is your best bet. If you are also a lampworker I
believe some models are offered with a door fitted with both the
window and bead door option but you should check with the
manufacturer to be sure.


#6
I'm looking at purchasing a new kiln. My used one won't do PMC. If
I don't plan on doing beads, is there any other use for a bead door?
I do enameling with my current kiln. 

When I got my kiln, I got a bead door and a little window. I’ve
never used the bead door, but I do use the little window. On my kiln,
the bead door is too low for easy inspection of items in the kiln
(especially enamels). With enamels I usually have a trivet on a bent
screen. Looking in through the bead door on my kiln, I would be
looking up at my enamel piece, seeing mostly the underside of the
enamel piece.

I suppose there is always the possibility that I may want to make
beads at some point in the future.

Whit


#7

For all of you who are using the window and bead door to look at the
enameling, etc., inside…do be sure you are protecting your eyes by
wearing appropriate glasses to keep the harmful rays from damaging
your retinas. That very bright red glow is very damaging.

Rose Marie Christison