Everything that could go wrong yesterday did; but 38 years of experience got this little baby fired high enough for my blue celadon liner glaze which has a Cone 8 to cone 11 or even higher range. Even when it's not reduced as well as the serving bowl in front, the liner resembles a light shino or cream glaze.
Everything was prepped well for the firing - my gorilla sprayer motor and back up were charged, except, it wouldn't work. No big problem since it can be hand pumped. It took 15 hrs of playing with burners, and pressure to get this kiln to fire to cone 8 and cone 9. I had drilled out the orifices for natural gas, but the problem is that my household pressure isn't enough. Olympic says it should be 7 lbs and around here it's only 6, but I thought a long enough firing should give me results I'd be happy with, if not the optimum. After all - what other choice did I have at this point.
Once I started spraying, it was going as well as could be expected, firing a kiln that long ion the south facing side of the house in 93 degree weather with no cover. Just as I was finishing the second round of spraying, the tip of the sprayer fell off and into the kiln. The melted tip certainly made an interesting and colorful mess. The only good part about this under insulated, uneven firing toy kiln is that it was cool enough to empty, less than ten hours after I shut it down.
I couldn't see my cones until the very end when I just used the color of the kiln and my level of exhaustion to call it quits, and put it into soak mode and clean the atmosphere. Oh, I forgot to mention, that my thermocouples were giving me crazy readings the entire firing, so knew I just had to go use the color in the kiln as my guide. It was an interesting day. Sometimes you just have to laugh.
Before I fire it again, I'm going to see if the gas company will up my pressure. For now, I'm off to Lowes hardware to buy a replacement brass tip and new o ring. This firing was like childbirth, so I will need another week or two to forget the pain before I fire the next load. Meantime I need to mix up more liner and accent glazes and get those other pots finished and wadded.