Lafayette Clayworks

Firing the Randy Brodnax Back-Fire Kiln


Getting the pots ready to be loaded into the kiln

Loading the pots into the kiln is not as easy as it might seem, air-flow, flame path, and how many pots to fit onto each level must be considered when loading


Every firing needs a cheering section (a.k.a. The Spouses)


The loaded kiln, not another pot will fit but we got it all in!


Once the pots are loaded, careful closing of the kiln starts.

With all the pots loaded and the kiln tightly closed, we can start the fire in the firebox.


Every kiln or firing needs a kiln god to protect and look over the firing. Hopefully this firing will come out as we all hope.    


With the fire started we need to make sure we keep it going for the next 20-24 hours.


Our fearless leader makes sure we're all well fed.


Man, that's looks really hot in there! Stirring the coals.


The fire is really going now and the temperature is rising nicely in the kiln.


Evening of the first firing day sets in, later the light from the kiln will be the only light visible.


The firing is at a stage now where we close as may openings as possible to make sure we maintain heat and get good reduction.


Even in the middle of the night the firing must be fed.


At the final stage of the firing, flames will shoot out the chimney. As you can see the smoke is black, sign of a good firing.


When the last cone has dropped it's time to close all openings in the kiln to make sure the heat stays in as long as possible so the pots cool down slowly.


The morning after we finish the firing, our master chef prepares a hefty breakfast; we're all excited about the unveiling. Just because we're camping in the woods is no reason for not having a gourmet breakfast.


We all gather around the kiln anxious to see how the pots came out.

aahhh... not sure!

The top layer of the kiln looks good, nice earth tones and good looking shinos.


Colors, shine, and great looking pots!


And the second layer looks just as good! Another great firing.

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