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" Woden" - Wood Fired Kiln - The Eleventh Firing!

This page records the Eleventh firing of the Woden kiln in July 2014. It is an archive of photographs taken before, during and after the firing, some of which are still awaited.

Laurence made a minor alteration to the kiln internal brickwork, by adding a couple of bricks to the end of the central tunnel that leads to the chimney. This aimed to stop the flames from the firebox being able to make a swift exit from the chamber, instead of taking a tour first. There is an image of this at the bottom of the page.

He also improved the insulation in places, building up an extra brick skin around some of the fireboxes. The top of the bricked-up door was finished off more tightly, with less gaps than usual.

There was not so much positive pressure inside the chamber, the chimney pulling better than usual and the fuel burning more efficiently - because it was very dry and with a small cross-section.

The firing was completed in record quick time and reached a good high temperature throughout the kiln, except for a couple of pots in the bottom corners. There was less reduction than usual, so the results were generally paler coloured clay where unglazed. The lighter coloured glazes were only slightly specked by ash being deposited on them.

The timber fuel was mainly offcuts of kiln-dried building battens and other planks, together with some pallets. The timber came from a local building site, where it is piled up for burning, so we liberated it (with permission!).

Menu for sections on this Page:-

Making Pots

Loading Pots

Firing Kiln

Unloading Pots


Making Pots - 2014


Images to follow, maybe.


Loading Pots 2014


Images to follow, maybe.


Firing Kiln - 2014


Images to follow, maybe.


Unloading Pots - 9th July 2014


Back of kiln fired pots

The front half of the kiln had been unloaded before we remembered to take some snap shots.

The back half of the kiln, mostly Bill's mortaria and also his class students work.

top back of fired chamber

Close up of the top of the back.

bottom back fired

Close up of bottom of the back.

LAurence fettling

Laurence fettling his pots, checking the quality and removing any sharp edges from where the shell pads impressed into the clay.

Assorted fired pots

An assortment of fired pots, being sorted.

On the right are Bill's bowls. Behind them Richard's lidded jars.

The large jar in the middle front was made by Bill and Anna. Anna raffled it unseen at the cider fest, but ended up buying it herself, just as well because it had a crack on the side near the base.

Laurence's mugs

Some of Laurence's tankards and puzzle mugs.

Laurence pots

Laurence's dishes. And also the tall mystery object, which is a prototype of a loudspeaker for an iPhone.


Bill's mortaria

Just a few more bowls inspired by Roman mortaria.

The lip makes them immediately functional, the speckled light oatmeal glaze works really well, each one being slightly different depending on the amount of ash landing on it.


Unglazed urns

A couple of large unglazed urns and a jug.




Report and Conclusions

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extra bricks

Two extra bricks on end, helping to stop the heated air from cutting a corner into the chimney.

A great firing, showing the wisdom of using dry thin timber to get hot quickly.

Laurence did most of the stoking, keeping up a steady constant flow of fuel into the fireboxes, so the bed of embers is maintained and the new fuel does not lower the temperature too much.

The temperature continued to rise fairly quickly until about 1150C, without the previous slow down at about 1050C.

We were all finished by 10pm.

Comments are very welcome - email Bill Crumbleholme


Thanks to :-

Cummings Builders for the timber offcuts and pallets.

The Landlord and sons for support and encouragement.

Pottery Class members for help filling and firing the kiln, especially Richard for bring the chips, just when needed.