A thermocouple is the twisted soldered metal pieces on the end of a pyrometer.
It is a temperature sensor used to measure the heat of the air inside a kiln.
It is placed inside the kiln either through a pre-drilled hole for this purpose or through the peep hole.
This device consists of two different metals.
These are joined together at one end, and that end is placed inside the kiln.
When the connection of the two metals is heated a voltage is produced.
The voltage is measured and converted to a temperature reading.
This reading is then displayed on the readable face of the pyrometer.
For the best results on your reading, always leave about one inch of room around this twisted soldered metal.
Placing it closer to your shelf or glass can cause the temperature to read inaccurately.
Do not allow the wires touch any live heating element wire.
These devices can be used over a wide range of temperatures.
From the vast changes in temperature, this piece can be come brittle.
Try to avoid hitting it when inserting objects inside the kiln.
Although small, they are very inexpensive, hardy and consistent devices.
Time and high temperatures will cause these to wear over time.
If it appears corroded or crusty, it may be time to replace the piece.
They are also interchangeable and have standard connectors, which makes them simple and inexpensive to replace.
Changing this device when it has failed or become corroded can make a large difference in the accuracy of your firings.
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Thermocouple to Glass Fusing Made Easy