Clayart Forum

General Category => General Discussion => Topic started by: rbogle on July 30, 2015, 08:50:53 AM

Title: sensible solutions
Post by: rbogle on July 30, 2015, 08:50:53 AM
it has been fun going over my notes and looking at the
plans from jim mckinnell.  early 60's.  (see my facebook page.)

he made things so simple...non-complex.

he stressed that you make the kiln to fit your needs.
it can be a top loader, front loader, arch, lid beams
or brick beams.  he talked about using a big set of kiln shelves
for the roof.  then insulating the shelves with earth etc.

i know for sure, that he jogged something in my brain about
simplicity.  it is just a box, fill it with heat and let it cool.

there were so many rules at the time..bag walls, arch roof only,
a certain size and shape that would let the heat move.(total bs)..and the
worst rule of all...huge flu...that was in the 80 sq inch mode.

so many of those kiln plans were worthless.  huge stacks, huge
outlet of heat and don't even think of the waste of was
crazy.  long firing schedules that again are worthless.  long pre
heat that is jt abernathy, jim had a feel for kilns.
sort of understood what the problem was, and how to solve it.
it amazes me today how i was by accident,  put in the wave length
of both of stuck with me.

it was sheer accident that i found the mckinnell plans...and, i to this
day, do not know from were they came.  nils was a huge fan of
jt.  so, jt ideas flowed to me from nils.  it sort of came together for
me.  my first garage gas kiln worked like a charm.  it was a perfect
8 hour kiln.  about 30 squares...and it had a 40 sq inch flu.
by accident.  and, i still think that accident had a big affect on
nils...he just could not understand how my kiln worked with such
a small flu.  then he experimented and it worked for him as well.
(industry used a much smaller flu than potters and that seemed
to make it all come together for nils in his writing.)

anyway, my brain is in high gear.  lots of things and people make us
who we are.  i was a very lucky boy.
( i did call nan mckinnell after jim died.  i told her how much
he meant to me, even though we had not met in person.  she
was very thankful that i called....she too felt that jim never got
the credit for early softbrick kilns...and, she was correct. )
there were a lot of big mouths that took credit for almost everything.
but, the way of the world.