Noborigama 60

Noborigama 60

This kiln was constructed on an existing concrete slab. Since the slab was flat, the inclination of the chambers was accomplished using cement blocks. An unexpected advantage of this design made the stoke holes of the salt chamber at eye level, which made for easy feeding. The height of this firebox is at eye level, making stoking easy on the back. It also means the feeder stands below the heat and smoke. Standing Up for Wood Firing, was an article written by Robert for the International Conference of Wood Fired Potters. This modest sized wood kiln served Robert's studio well for fifteen years. It fired easily in about twenty hours, one of the drawbacks was its small size, which prohibited firing large pieces. Robert built his Noborigama 250 c.f. to solve those issues.
2008 Gas Fired Car Kiln

Gas Car Kiln

The gas kiln at Robert's studio is used primarily for bisque firing.
Most of his work is fired in one of his wood fired kilns.
However, he does high fire the gas reduction kiln to touch up pots that may have been under-fired, or had un-melted ash deposits from the wood kiln. He also uses the gas car kiln for special glazes
such as Copper Red or Carbon Trapped Shino.

Christine, Robert & Shino in front of the Wood Chamber

Noborigama 250

This kiln has a total volume of 550 cubic feet, when factoring in bag walls, and fireboxes. It has 250 cubic feet of shelving area in the chambers. The main firebox can take wood up to 6 ft long and burns both hard and softwood, depending on the cycle. The pots have been bisque fired "first" in a gas kiln, allowing for a faster start during the wood firing. The kiln was designed so there is plenty of room to maneuver in the chambers when loading. Each firing holds about 1500 pots, including a dozen or more large planters and urns. One of the reasons Robert built this kiln was to enable him to fire large pots. Six Week Firing Cycle Glazing a kiln load takes about 14 days plus another 12 days to wad and load the pots. The actual firing time is 62 hours then 5 days of cooling before unloading. Unloading the kiln, grading then pricing pots adds another 18 days. This kiln is fired twice a year, usually in the months of June and September.
Wood Fire Kiln 16, being fired before it had a building over it.

Wood Fire Kiln 16

He built a smaller Wood Fired Kiln 16 c.f. for testing ideas and doing glaze checks. An aspect of this particular kiln was it's lack of firebox grates. Coals tended to build up thus reducing the supply of air. Raking the firebox became part of the firing cycle in this kiln.