At the beginning of March we loaded, fired, and opened the first kiln of the year. Our kiln Gertrude was as reliable as ever. This was a soda firing, so near the end of the firing we injected a soda solution into the kiln through its four charge ports.
Firing went well, but there was one hiccup. We had two cone packs in the kiln: one on the top and one on the bottom. Halfway through the firing the brick inside the bottom spy port broke, leaving half behind to block our view of the lower cone pack. We considered trying to remove the stuck piece, but decided it was too risky. We couldn’t check our progress with that cone pack for the rest of the firing. Happily once we opened the kiln up we were able to see from both cones pack that we had achieved the temperatures we wanted on both the top and bottom of the kiln.
I was so excited about opening the kiln up after it had cooled off, I forgot to get take some photos before we unloaded! But here are a few of my favorites.
There were lots of experiments and tests in this kiln that gave me good information. I need to find some good glazes to best show off some of the new techniques I’m interested in pursuing. The next kiln will likely be full of glaze tests. For now I’m off to work on filling the next kiln…