Microwave kiln - a small introduction
By HotPot Norge, Jan 6 2012 11:00AM
A microwave kiln is a device that crafters use to fire small art projects in a microwave oven.
While some crafters use it to fire ceramics or process precious metal clays, the most common use is to fuse small pieces of glass as part of the jewelry-making process.
This type of kiln has numerous benefits — namely cost, time efficiency, and convenience.
Microwave kilns are cylindrical in shape and consist of a base piece and a cover made from a combination of ceramic and refractory board. Refractory board is a material that can withstand high temperatures and act as an insulator.
To use a microwave kiln, place the fiber and thin fire paper in the middle of the base piece.
Put the glass on top of these papers and place the base with the glass in the middle of the microwave on the blocks that are delivered with the HotPot.
These blocks are necessary to elevate the HotPot from the bottom of your microwave.
By using the blocks the generated heat stays in the HotPot.
It prevents thermal conductivity from the HotPot into the microwave and by this protects your microwave against overheating.
After placing the base I put the top part of the HotPot on its base.
I do this at this stage so I can see if the glass layers are still in the way I wanted.
Activate the microwave and run until the piece has been completely fired. Once the process is finished remove the HotPot immediately from the microwave and leave to cool on a heat-proof surface.
A bathroom tile is perfect for this.
There are a number of benefits to using a microwave kiln.
It is significantly cheaper in price than a traditional kiln, and it requires a great deal less energy to operate.
While the firing time varies based on the size and type of the project and by the wattage of the microwave, the process is generally brief, typically achieving fusion in 8 to 12 minutes.
We recommend maintaining a separate microwave dedicated solely to kiln projects.
To minimize the potential for accidents, it generally is recommended that all microwave kiln users thoroughly review manufacturer instructions before kiln use
I am Peter from UK. I purchased A HotPot from a supplier several years ago. I like using it as I am a glassworker that uses smaller pieces for my projects and do not use it constantly. Recently a part of the base that glass pieces are placed on internally fractured away. Now I can continue to use the unit but it may limit my potential with it.
My question is do you know if I can get a replacement base and from where. It would be a pity to have to lay out for a completely new unit if another base could be available.
We should have a couple of bases around if you haven't already found a replacement. They are available in our webshop.