Kiln Parts

Ok, so you have read about the different kiln parts, but what do they look like?

I know that when you first hear about all the different parts, it can be quite confusing.

When purchasing a kiln for the first time, you need to know what parts are needed and which parts you can do without.

This page will give your some graphic pictures of some basic parts, and what they are used for.

All glass fusing kilns have the same basic components:

  • Elements (high temperature coiled wire) are usually embedded into the walls and/or top of the kiln.
  • Fire brick insulation on the inside of the kiln top, walls and bottom.
  • Stainless steel cover on lid and outside of kiln.
  • Thermocouple – high temperature wires covered by ceramic rings and placed through a hole to the inside of your kiln.
  • Infinite Dial – some kilns just have an on/off switch, while others have settings from low to high.
  • This is a Jen Ken kiln.

    Jen Ken kilns come in many sizes.

    Lets look at all the kiln parts that make up this unit.

    kiln parts

    Kiln Lid

    This is the lid of the kiln.

    You can see how the fire bricks are lined up to make this piece.

    This is a top loading kiln, with a hinge.

    The outside is made of stainless steel.

    There are no coils embedded into the lid of this particular kiln.

    You can see that there is a chain securing the lid from being moved too far back on the kiln.

    A handle is used to open this lid to gain access to the kiln.

    kiln parts

    Kiln Latch

    One of the kiln parts and features of this kiln is the latch.

    This allows you to lift the lid just a little to allow the unit to cool.

    kiln parts

    Infinite Switch and Pyrometer

    This picture shows the kiln parts known as the infinite switch, pyrometer , and light indicator.

    The dial is used to control the rate of electricity to the kiln.

    It is not like a regular oven dial that you can set to achieve a particular temperature.

    How high or low you set this dial will determine what percentage of time the heating elements are on, and how fast your kiln will heat up or cool down.

    This switch is used to go from a setting of low to high.

    The simplest control method is still turning the kiln on and off along with frequent observation of the item being fired, and adjusting this dial as needed.

    The pyrometer has the readable face on one end and the thermocouple on the other end.

    You can't see the thermocouple here, because it is inside the kiln.

    This unit directly reads the temperature of the kiln.

    The infinite switch and pyrometer is a dial type control of your kiln.

    This method is the cheapest and simplest device available for constant monitoring the inside kiln temperature.

    Using an infinite switch and pyrometer do require continuous supervision and adjustment to achieve the best possible results.

    Always use a timer with an alarm, when using this type of control over your kiln.

    The black rectangle you see on the top right side is a light that comes on to tell you that the kiln is on.

    kiln parts

    Peep Hole

    As you look around the side of the kiln, you will see the peep hole .

    When firing a piece, the hole is plugged with a peep hole plug.

    This is used for looking inside the kiln to check the status of your piece.

    Always wear safety glass when looking inside your kiln.

    The peep hole plug can also be removed for venting your kiln.

    kiln parts

    The picture above shows the peep hole and the peep hole with the plug inserted.

    Inside the Kiln

    Ok, this is what the inside of the kiln looks like.

    This particular kiln is constructed with fire bricks.

    You can see that the heating coils or kiln elements are in grooves in the fire bricks.

    kiln parts

    This picture shows a close up of the peep hole inside the kiln, and the coils going around the edges.

    kiln parts

    Kiln shelf and posts

    The kiln shelf is usually round or square.

    This kiln supports the round shelf.

    The shelf should be at least one inch below the thermocouple.

    This picture shows the kiln shelf and kiln posts.

    The kiln posts are placed under the kiln shelf inside the kiln.

    kiln parts


    A thermocouple runs from the pyrometer into the kiln.

    In a previous picture, I showed you the pyrometer on the outside of the kiln.

    The pyrometer has a thermocouple on one end, and it is inserted into the kiln.

    The thermocouple can become brittle from previous firings.

    When inserting the kiln shelf avoid hitting the thermocouple as it could break.

    kiln parts

    Hopefully by seeing pictures of the different kiln parts, you will have a better understanding of the different kiln parts and how they work.

    Return from this page to one of the following pages:


    Kiln Parts to Glass Fusing Made Easy

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