Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Switchback Kiln Building

     This summer I am privileged to witness a new kiln raising at NAU Ceramics. It is a "switchback" design. This means that the kiln will be fired from one end at the beginning of the firing and then fired from the other end for the second half of the firing thereby depositing fly-ash on both sides of the wares and producing similar heat on both ends of the kiln. This design demands two fire-boxes and two chimneys each with its own damper for shutting down that side of the kiln when switching back. There will be a more typical fire box with an ash pit or brick grate system at one end and a train-kiln-like bourry box at the other end. The chimneys will ascend above their respective fire boxes. As far as we are aware, this is only the second kiln of its kind in the world and the only one in the Western Hemisphere. The kiln is designed by Itsuji, a visiting artist accompanying Takashi Nakazato and Takashi's former apprentice Kazu Oba. Here are some pics of the process thus far.
Pacing Out
Kazu and Etsu
Kazu Mortaring

Kiln floor and ash pit are set

Raising the walls

So far so good


woodfirer said...

It's looking great!
Is a roof planned?
Greetings from Estonia (soon packing the Kohila anagama) to all,

Eugene Brosseau said...

An arch brick roof is planned. Good to hear from you. All the best to you!

woodfirer said...

Update needed!