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Kiln for enameling small pieces


#1

Hi,

Can anybody recommend a small kiln to be used mainly for enameling
small pieces for pendants etc. Anybody have any experience with the
microkiln - the one you put in the microwave?

Thanks in advance,
Cyndy


#2

Hi Cindy,

I use a small table top kiln made by Amaco for enameling. Rio Grande
also sells one and so does Thompson enamel.

If you want any other specifics please let me know.

jennifer friedman
http://www.jenniferfriedmanstudio.com


#3

Hi Cyndy,

I have no experience with a microwave kiln, but I have done a lot of
enameling in the Ultralite. The Ultralite kiln retails for $167 and
is available from a variety of sources, including Rio Grande.

The workspace in an Ultralite is just 3", but that’s plenty for most
jewelry pieces. It works great! In my book, Enameling on Metal Clay,
I provided a lot of instructions for enameling not only in a regular
kiln, but also in an Ultralite.

I’d be very interested to hear if anyone has tried enamel in the
microkiln and what the results were. I have my suspicions that it
won’t work well, but having not tried it, it’s just a gut feeling
with no proof to back it up.

Good luck!
Pam East
www.pameast.net


#4

There are several good choices on small enameling kilns. The first
is an electric kiln which looks like a beehive. You are limited to
very small items and the heating is pretty uniform if the metal
cover is placed over the piece. With a kiln without a temperature
controller, you need to use care not to over heat your enamels or
melt your items.

Next you have the microwave kiln you asked about. These actually
come in a couple sizes. They take from 2 1/2 minutes to around 5
minutes in a microwave oven, depending on the strength of the oven.
Do be careful taking these in and out of your microwave as the top
glory hole has a tremendous amount of heat comming from it. Moving
these in and out of a microwave should be done with care as the
interior of the kiln is extremely hot. That said they work very well
for small projects.

The next option is either a PMC or small enameling kiln. Some have
programmers built in, and regulate the temperature of the kiln and
the melting enamel very accurately. These run from $570 - $630.00
USD for the small kilns. The advantage with these is you can do
small pendants and rings up to small bowls and light switch cover
sizes. They offer a lot more versatility and at an affordable price
can also be used for PMC.

Best regards,
Phillip Scott G.G.

Technical Support
Rio Grande
1-800-545-6566
technicalsupport@tbg.riogrande.com


#5

The microwave kilns have a limited lifespan and are pretty specific
about the voltage range of the microwave that they will work on. If
you are looking for a small kiln, I would recommend the small
trinket-style kilns like the Ultralite kiln. These are small plug-in
round kilns that have an optional controller (not temperature
controlled, more of a high-med-low controller). The high temp on the
controller will be approx 1500 degrees F, perfect for enameling, and
with the metal insert it is perfect for keum-boo.

BBR - Sandi Graves
Stormcloud Trading Co (Beadstorm)
Saint Paul, Minnesota
651-645-0343


#6

Hello Pam and Cyndy

A friend of mine has been loaned one of the microwave kiln and some
of the enamels made specifically to use in same by a local ceramics
company. Her and I will hopefully get some time this summer to
experiment with this kiln. As she also has experience with ceramics
and PMC we expect to also experiment with these as well. I will let
you all know the results as I do.

Watching the crocus and hyacinth poke through the bits of snow left
from the last storm a week ago.

Karen Bahr - Karen’s Artworx
Calgary, Alberta, Canada