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Enamel Firing


#1

I am looking for a faster way to fire enamel. Right now I fire it in
a kiln (1400 degrees) I was wondering if anybody can help me?


#2

Hi Fawniel, I guess my question would be…what material are you firing
it on? Different materials take different enamel types and temps.

How fast are you looking to fire?

I fire large sheets of copper in my kiln at 1475 degrees F and if the
kiln is warmed up they fire in 2-4 minutes tops. You use the same temp
and type of enamel for gold and silver and the firing times are
similar from my memories.

Karen
Northern Illinois where is is 45 degrees for the first
time since November!


#3
 Regarding your statement I am looking for a faster way to fire
enamel.  Right now I fire it in a kiln (1400 degrees) I was
wondering if anybody can help me? 

How long does it take to fire a piece under current conditions? If
you read the first six years of Glass on Metal issues you will find
many well written articles by Woody Carpenter. He has spent a
considerable portion of his professional life working with enamels.
The is invaluable.

Using higher temperatures increases the chance of creating much more
firescale. How big is your kiln relative to the “mass” of the piece
being fired; does your kiln loose a lot of heat and takes a long time
to get back up to heat?

I fire my pieces of copper at 1450 degF for about 1 to 1.5 minutes or
less and apply many thinly applied layers as I can. For
"unconventional" work I will fire at higher temperatures and longer to
deliberately induce firescale.

Again, hope this helps

David


#4

I am a bit puzzled about your request for a faster way to fire
enamels. you mention that you are firing at 1400. I don’t know what
brand of enamels you are using, but Thompson’s lead free, can be
fired at higher temperatures—but keep it BELOW 1500. If still not
fused, leave them in longer. The temperature of the kiln, and the
time required for the enamels to fuse, depends on the enamels
themselves. Some require more time, some less time. The time
required will depend not only on the enamel, but on the size of the
piece. Also, lead free enamels usually require lower temperatures
than lead bearing–but here again it depends on the enamel being
used. I usually fire around 1460 to 1480, unless I want to
intentionally overfire a piece for some special effect, in which case
I take it to 1600. A risky procedure, and not recommended unless
you thoroughly understand the characteristics of your enamel, and
your kiln. Be sure to make test of each and every enamel you use,
making note of the time it took for it to fuse and the temperature
you are running your kiln.Hope this helps.


#5
 I am looking for a faster way to fire enamel.  Right now I fire it
in a kiln (1400 degrees) I was wondering if anybody can help me? 

***1400 degree is only sufficient for low fusing enamels and never be
good enough to fire medium- and hard fusing ename;s, even when you
leave it in a long time. Your kiln should be able to warm up to 1600
degrees, but better hotter because sometimes you should like to heat
the enamel quick and short. When you cannot fire it in several minutes
it is not the good temperature. Only bigger projects need longer,
because the metal you are enameling takes it’s time to warm.

When your kiln can’t come any higher you can better use your torch
(allways heat from underneith, the flame will ruin the enamel - unless
you like it fumed of course, sometimes I use it as ‘finishing touch’)
or buy a better kiln. You can try to buy one second hand. Ceramic
kilns are also very good to use, only the ones with a door in front.
Notice the way the door turns, you must do it with one hand very quick
while putting the enamel project in.

When you buy a kiln notice the time it needs to warm, the way you can
control the temerature (very important) and how many energy it uses.
You can save a lot of money and the environment with a economical
kiln. Think about the inside measuRe: you need some space around your
project, and what do you want to make in the future? But than of
course you can buy a bigger one. (at the moment I have got four kilns,
all different sizes. One is the most economic and the best to control
and most of the time I use that one - best buy! the other ones are
second hand and especially for the case that…kept.)

Wish you a lot of succes, enameling is a great technique and I
recommend it strongly! Just a lot of practice before you can control
it, but isn’t that with everything?

by, Marleen B.Berg.


#6

Hi Fawniel,

The firing temperature really depends upon the enamels you are using.
I work with mostly leaded Japanese enamels and I routinely fire at
1450 to 1500 F for one to two minutes depending on color. Firing any
hotter and you risk burning everything. As to your trouble with pits
and bubbles; lay your enamel on thinly, over multiple firings. If you
are wet packing, be sure to settle the grains by dragging a textured
tool across an edge of the enamel to “vibrate” the grains into place
before you draw off the extra water.

Good luck and keep trying!

Nikki


#7
I am looking for a faster way to fire enamel.  Right now I fire it
in a kiln (1400 degrees) I was wondering if anybody can help me? 

I’m not sure what you mean, I leave my pieces in the kiln for a mere
two minutes, how much faster do you need to go???

I am having problems with pits and bubbles in my enamel.  Does
anybody know where the pits and bubbles come from? 

I’m unclear on how you are applying your enamels. Are you
wet-packing or sifting dry. If you’re wet packing you can gently tap
your piece before you set it aside to dry (you are drying before
firing, yes?) I pack my enamels with the piece sitting on scrap paper
(old telephone books work wonders), when I’m done I pick the piece up
by the paper and tap it on my counter top. It brings the moisture to
the surface and any air that may be lock in. I hope this helps. Lisa


#8

hello everybody!

where can i find subscription for this wonderful magazine
called Glass on Metal?

also, how does one determine fair prices for contract work? some
jewelers in our area are wanting us to set stones for them, and we are
not sure how much to charge for various settings.

thank you everyone,

susannah


#9
where can i find subscription for this wonderful
magazine >called Glass on Metal? 
	The Enamelist Society
	P.O. Box 310
	Newport, KY 41072
	606/291-3800
	606/291-1849 [fax]
	Membership: $45/year

Their website address is:
http://www.craftweb.com/org/enamel/enamel.htm

Louise
@lgillin1


#10
where can i find subscription for this wonderful
magazine called Glass on Metal? 

Membership in the Enamelist Society gets you the magazine. Membership
runs from Jan. through Dec. $45. Send name and address with payment in
U.S. funds drawn on a U.S. bank to: The Enamelist Society, P.O. Box
631704, Cincinnati, OH 45263-1704. Make check payable to: The
Enamelist Society

Donna in VA


#11
 hello everybody! where can i find subscription for this
wonderful magazine called Glass on Metal? 

You can get it by joining the Enamelist Society. The cost is $45 per
year and includes a subscription to the magazine which is published
five times yearly. You can send a check with all of the info needed
(name, address, etc.) to The Enamelist Society, P.O. Box 631704,
Cincinnati, Ohio, 45263-1704. You can also charge the membership to a
credit card (Visa, Mastercard) by sending the same above
plus credit card number, expiration date, and amount to be charged to
the Enamelist Society Bookeeper: Abra Dennis, 67 Sutton Point,
Pittsford, NY 14534.

Laura.
lwiesler@att.net


#12
        I am looking for a faster way to fire enamel.  Right now I
fire it in a kiln (1400 degrees) I was wondering if anybody can help
me? 

Sorry if I’m stating the obvious, but you do know that you get the
kiln up to firing temperature first, don’t you? The piece to be fired
goes into an already hot kiln, fuses, and is removed, leaving the kiln
still switched on and hot. Apologies if this isn’t addressing the
root of the problem.

Kevin (NW England, UK)