Prometheus Kilns.
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The Prometheus Pro-7 PRG For Enamelling, Glass Fusing, Jewellery, Art Clay Metal Clay, And PMC Silver Clay. The Prometheus Pro-7 PRG With A Bead Door For Bead Annealing, Fusing, Glass Work, Jewellery, And Metal Clays.
UK To EU Plug Adapter.
Ceramic Block.
Ceramic Cloth.
EU Plug.
UK-EU Adapter.
Dry Powder Extinguisher.
Glare Resistant Glasses.
HEPA Mask.
heat-resistant Gloves.
Kitiki Cutters.
Kitiki Flush Cutters.
Kitiki Flat-Nose Pliers.
Kitiki Pointed-Nose Pliers.
Kitiki Bent-Nose Pliers.
Kitiki Round-Nose Pliers.
Protective Glasses.
Potter & Brumfield Relay.
Dorset, SW England.
UK 13A Plug.
Large Rubber Drum 950gm Open
The AX-4 Digital Controller.
MiniKiln Closed.
Bartlett-Paragon Touch Screen Digital Controller.
Paragon BlueBird Bead Annealing Kiln.
Lauscha by Carrie Fertig.
Activated Charcoal Granules.
Paragon Caldera Ceramics And Glass Kiln.
Paragon Caldera Bead, Enamels, And Glass Kiln.
Paragon Crucible.
Paragon Fusion CS14D Glass Kiln.
Paragon Fusion CS14SB Glass And Bead Kiln.
Paragon Caldera XL Ceramics Kiln.
Paragon F500 Lampwork Kiln.
Paragon FireFly Ceramics Kiln.
Paragon Fusion 7 Glass Kiln.
Paragon Fusion 8 Glass Kiln.
Paragon GL18ADTSD Glass Kiln.
Paragon HT-14D Heat Treating Furnace.
Paragon Janus 1613 Ceramics Kiln.
Paragon KM18D Knife-Making Oven.
Paragon KM36 XL PRP Knife-Making Furnace.
Paragon-Orton Vent Master: Unassembled.
Paragon-Orton Vent Master: Suction Cup.
Paragon Pearl 22 Glass Kiln.
Paragon PMT21 Heat Treating Kiln.
Paragon Door Peephole And Vent.
Stainless Steel Pans.
Paragon SC-2 Black Jewellery Kiln.
Paragon SC2 Jewellery Kiln.
Paragon SC2B Bead-Door Kiln.
Paragon SC2W Enamelling Kiln.
Paragon SC4 Glass Kiln.
Paragon SC2BW Jewellery And Bead Kiln.
Paragon SC2D Pro-3 Jewellery Kiln.
Paragon SC2 Shelf Kit.
Paragon SC-2 Jade Jewellery Kiln.
Paragon SC-2 Black Jewellery Kiln.
Orton-Paragon Sentry Xpress Programmer.
Orton-Paragon Sentry Programmer.
Bartlett-Paragon Sentinel Touch-Screen Controller.
Paragon SC-2 Pink Jewellery Kiln.
Paragon SC-2 Pro Black Jewellery Kiln.
Paragon SC-2 Turqoise Jewellery Kiln.
Paragon SC-2 Purple Jewellery Kiln.
Paragon SC-2 Navy Jewellery Kiln.
Paragon SC-2 Berry Jewellery Kiln.
Paragon ST-8 Kiln Table.
Paragon Kiln Table With Casters.
Paragon TNF 1613 Ceramics Kiln.
Paragon GL24 Kiln Table.
Paragon Xpress 1613 Top Row Of Bricks.
Paragon W Lost-Wax Casting Kiln.
Paragon Lost-Wax Burnout Tray With Grille.
Paragon Lost-Wax Burnout Tray With Grid.
USB Plug.
Paragon Xpress E-12 Jewellery Kiln.
Paragon Xpress E-12B Bead Kiln.
Paragon Xpress E-14 Glass Kiln.
Paragon Xpress Q-11 Ceramics Kiln.
Paragon Vitrigraph Kiln.
Prometheus Pro-7.
The Prometheus Pro-7 For Beads, Dichroics, Enamelling, Fusing, And Metal Clays.

The Prometheus Pro-7 PRG For Art Clay, PMC, Jewellery, Annealing Beads, Dichroics, Enamels, Glass Fusing, Moulding, Sagging, And Slumping, Lost-Wax Casting, And Metal Clays.

The Prometheus Pro 7 is generally used for Art Clay and PMC metal clays, annealing beads, dichroics, enamels, fusing glass, heat treating, making jewellery, and melting silver, although it has other applications. It's an 1100°C kiln, with a digital programmer. Learn all about the Prometheus Pro 7 kiln on this page.


Prices here are transparent: they're for UK-EU voltage, CE marked, CL CSA approved, and TUV tested kilns, and include a pro shelf kit, comprehensive instructions, GB-mainland delivery, UK VAT, and free continuing support from a top-tier international distributor. So you can start work straight away.

For prices, trading terms, and secure on-line shopping, use the shop link below the menu bar near the top-right of any page. The order form is on the shop page, after the price list near the bottom.

Kilns that weigh less than 30kg including the packing only need a regular parcel-service van: delivery is free within the GB-mainland. Kilns that weigh more than 30kg need a tail-lift lorry with a hydraulic pallet trolley. For delivery charges or other locations, check the shop page.

Prometheus Pro-7 Prg For Enamelling, Fusing, And Metal Clays. Prometheus Pro-7 Prg With A Bead Door For Annealing Beads, Enamelling, Fusing, And Metal Clays.
Prometheus Pro 7 Programmable Kiln. Prometheus Pro 7 Programmable Kiln.
THE PROMETHEUS PRO 7 PRG METAL CLAYS, DICHROICS, ENAMELS, AND GLASS FUSING
The Kitiki Pro 7 For Art Clay Silver Clays, Enamelling, Fusing Glass, And PMC Metal Clays. The Kitiki Pro 7 For Art Clay Silver Clays, Bead Annealing, Enamelling, Fusing Glass, And PMC Metal Clays. Kitiki Orton-Prometheus AutoFire Xpress Digital Progrmamer.

The Prometheus PR7 For Art Clay, PMC, Jewellery, Annealing Beads, Dichroics, Enamels, Glass Fusing, Moulding, Sagging, And Slumping, Lost-Wax Casting, And Metal Clays.

The Prometheus Pro 7 is an 1100°C, rectangular, front-opening, plug-in, table-top, ceramic-fibre kiln, with a ramp-hold Orton AutoFire Xpress 3-key digital programmer.


The UK-EU kiln is rated at 230V-240V 1950W, so it can use a regular mains socket. To comply with UK-EU safety regulations, the elements are embedded in rigidised ceramic fibre: an important safety feature. However, never get careless: kilns are very hot and connected to the mains.

The external dimensions are 360mm x 370mm x 430mm high, and is slotted for air circulation: so it keeps cool. The case is slotted for air circulation and has an integral stand with four rubber feet. The door opens 180°, and has an adjustable door catch and a vent-hole for processes that release fumes. The vent also serves as a peephole: it's not a glass window.

The firing chamber measures 230mm x 205mm x 155mm high internally, and heats from the top, both sides, and the bottom with the fast-firing element safely embedded in the fibre. The kiln has a silent long-life solid-state relay and a nickel-chromium K-type thermocouple.


The programmer's electronic display prompts for heating rates, target temperatures, and hold times, making it easy to set up and re-use accurate heating, holding, and cooling sequences.


The accessories for this kiln are in the on-line shop:

List.stacking shelf kit and shelf paper
List.charcoal for the stainless steel box used for firing some metal clays
List.ceramic fibre cloth
List.ceramic block
List.HEPA dust mask
List.glare-resistant glasses
List.heat-resistant gloves

And finally, my opinion.

The Prometheus Pro 7 is a reliable, robust, well-made kiln at a good price. It's small enough to use in your home, school, craft workshop, jewellery studio, or course venue, as it only weighs about 22Kg. It's guaranteed for a year, and there's an informed and supportive user-base, and international spares and repair centres.

Owners call them Art Clay kilns, beading kilns, bronze-clay kilns, clay kilns, copper-clay kilns, dichroic-glass kilns, enamel kilns, enamelling kilns, glass kilns, glass-fusing kilns, heat-treating kilns, home-hobby kilns, jewelry kilns, jewellery kilns, lampwork kilns, metal clay kilns, mixed-media kilns, PMC kilns, silver clay kilns, small kilns, or studio kilns. This diversity is a good reflection of their popularity.


The Orton AutoFire Express digital programmer allows you to set up, and re-use, nine accurate drying, heating, holding, and cooling sequences: and do something else whilst the sequence is running. A sequence can consist of up to eight segments.
A segment is one step in a sequence: often the time it takes to reach a target temperature. For example: a segment could take 50 minutes to reach 650°C, could hold at 850°C for 12 minutes, or could cool down over two hours.


Some bronze and copper clays can be fired in activated charcoal granules in a stainless steel container. The Pro 7, SC2, SC3, E9A. E10A, 1193, and Caldera hold a one-litre container: the E12A, E14A, and J14A hold a three-litre.

Particulates represent a health risk if they're breathed in, so wear a HEPA mask when cleaning out your kiln, mixing kiln wash, and working with charcoals, ceramic-fibre blocks, cloths, and papers. And, ideally, use protective glasses.

If you want to touch anything hot or move your kiln before it's cooled off, it's important to wear heat-resistant gloves. And, if you want to look into a red-hot kiln, wear glare-resistant glasses which protect your eyes from IR and UV.


It's ideal for your arts centre, college, course venue, craft classes, dental or medical laboratory, engineering workshop, home business, jewellery studio, school, or technical facility.

The kiln is fired in the factory to harden the ceramic, so it may not look bright white. It's also important to understand that all ceramics develop hairline cracks or tiny bits may flake off: this does not affect its safety or use.

For help, or in the unlikely event of a fault, you can mail or call an engineer in the UK. However, home checks, adjustments, and repairs are quick and easy, needing little more than a screwdriver, and you can watch on-line videos. Alternatively, we can repair the kiln in our workshop at Cherry Heaven.

The Prometheus Pro 7 is similar to the Paragon SC2. If this is not what you want, look at www.paragonkilns.co.uk: the SC2, Xpress Q11, and Xpress E12 in particular.

APPLICATIONS: WHAT CAN I DO WITH A PRO 7?

OPTIONAL READING
Slumped Bowl. Glass Art. Dichroic Earrings. Glass Beads.

Use it for making jewellery, annealing beads and glass, painting china, applying decals, dental work, fusing dichroic glasses, enamelling, fire polishing, glass art, glass casting, fusing, sagging, and slumping, glass clays, heat treating, knife making, laboratory testing, lampwork, lost-wax casting, low-fire ceramics, melting gold and silver, firing bronze and copper metal clays, moulding gun and model parts, pâte de verre, sintering gold and silver clays, staining glass, hardening and tempering blades, cutters, dies, and tools, wax burn out, and many other materials and processes.

Small kilns are perfect for jewellery-making, so you can use most popular small-scale materials such as Accent Gold, Art Clay metal clays, BullsEye glasses, dichroic glasses, enamels, GlasClay, Image Transfer Solution, Metal Clay Veneer, PMC silver clay, Prometheus bronze clay, ProCopper clay, and SilverEtch.
And there's an increasingly diverse range of other metal clays, such as Cinter, Clay Mania, Creative, Goldie, Hadar Jacobson, Metal Adventures, Meteor, Noble, and PMC Sterling.

You can make beads, bracelets, brooches, candle holders, chandelier components, decorations, earrings, figurines, fingerprint keepsakes, glass-art, jewellery, miniatures, gun and model parts, necklaces, ornaments, pendants, pet-id tags, rings, souvenirs, stained-glass designs, tableware, thimbles, tiles, tools, and trinkets, as unique hand-crafted pieces or repeatable stock for sale.


It's ideal for your arts centre, college, course venue, craft classes, dental or medical laboratory, engineering workshop, home business, jewellery studio, school, or technical facility. Especially as it has a two-year warranty.

It heats up quickly, so it's just right for a classroom, and it's small enough to pack away if you want an occasional hobby kiln. As it only weighs about 6kg, it's easy to take to craft fairs, demonstrations, and exhibitions. It's probably the most popular minikiln in the UK.


For help, or in the unlikely event of a fault, you can mail or call an engineer in the UK. However, checks, adjustments, and repairs are simple, needing little more than a PosiDriv screwdriver. Alternatively, we can service the kiln in our workshop at Cherry Heaven.

THE PROMETHEUS PRO 7: KILN FURNITURE

The Prometheus Pro 7 Kiln Furniture.

There's a recommended shelf, included in the price: one ceramic-fibre shelf 190mm x 190mm x 8mm for metal clays, enamels, and glass.

There's an extra recommended kit, not included in the price: one 178mm x 178mm x 15mm shelf and four posts. You can choose 12mm, 25mm, or 50mm posts.

Depending on the material or process, and the sizes of your pieces, stacked shelves will hold more work, free up your time, and reduce the unit firing cost: so you might want more kits. This kiln has room for three.


If extra kits are packed with the kiln, the delivery charge doesn't increase. Ordered later, not with the kiln, they need a box and protective packing and attract an extra delivery charge. Outside the UK mainland, this might be expensive. So, if you think you'll need them, order them with your kiln, along with any other accessories, materials, parts, or tools.

RECOMMENDED READING
General Help and FAQs For Kilns. Paragon Kiln Shelf Kit. Paragon Relay. Paragon Transformer.

Kilns, Digital Programmers, Kiln Furniture, Options, Upgrades, Firing, Kiln Logs, Accessories, Materials, Parts, Processes, Repairs, And Tools.

The remaining sections are recommended reading, unless you're already using kilns successfully.


Cherry Heaven has been a Paragon distributor since 2002, and commended every year for outstanding performance. Paragon kilns are good value: buy Paragons and you could save enough to treat yourself to a luxury five-star weekend break.

Anyone can buy a kiln to resell and call themselves a specialist, but a top-tier distributor understands all the kilns, options, and upgrades, will stock spares, offers free competent technical support, can help you repair your kiln, provides on-line repair videos, has a repair workshop, and can access Paragon's extensive knowledge-base.

If you need help, you can mail an experienced technician or call . Alternatively, to learn more about how your kiln works, use the help link below the menu bar near the top of the page.

A BRIEF INTRODUCTION TO METAL CLAYS
Art Clay Silver Clay. Acrylic Tools. Clay Shapers. Hand Tools.

What Is A Metal Clay?

Metal Clays are clay-like materials made of fine metal powders and water-soluble organic binders. Out of the packet they feel like modelling clay, so can be shaped using anything appropriate. If you don't like what you've made, you can roll it up and start again. Any scraps can be wrapped up in cling-film or foil and re-used, so there's almost no waste.

When you're happy with your work, it's dried so that the moisture can evaporate. At this stage it feels like a plaster, so you can still refine the shape: or even add more clay.

As it's fired, the binders vapourise, releasing small amounts of non-toxic carbon dioxide and water, and the metal powder sinters, leaving solid metal: real metal, not something that just looks like metal. The firing temperature isn't high enough to melt the metal otherwise your work would liquify and lose it's shape.


Although Art Clay and PMC silver clays were first to market, there's now an increasingly diverse range of metal clays, such as Cinter, Clay Mania, Creative, Goldie, Hadar Jacobson, Metal Adventures, Meteor, Noble, PMC Sterling, and Prometheus.

I sometimes get asked if there's a platinum metal clay: there is, but it's an industrial product. Platinum melts at 1772°C, so a platimum clay would probably need to fire at around 1600°C: beyond the maximum temperature of conventional kilns.


All our tools have been chosen for their engineering excellence and clean functionality, to help you manage a creative and efficient work environment. And you'll enjoy using good tools rather than continually improvising. To learn more, use the accessories-tools link below the menu bar near the top of the page.

SILVER CLAY
Art Clay Silver Pendant. Art Clay Silver Necklace. Art Clay Silver Pendant. Art Clay Silver Brooch.

Aida Art Clay Silver And Mitsubishi PMC Silver Clay.

There are two popular makes of silver clay: Art Clay made by Aida Chemical Industries and PMC made by Mitsubishi Materials Corporation, in Japan. They're both clay-like materials made of fine silver powder and water-soluble organic binders.

Art Clay Silver and PMC Silver, sometimes just called silver clay, metal clay, or precious-metal clay, are easy to fire: put your dried work on a kiln shelf and programme the temperature and hold-time.

As they're fired, the binders vapourise, releasing very small amounts of non-toxic carbon dioxide and water, and the metal powder sinters, leaving solid 999 silver: real metal, not something that just looks like metal.

All jewellery kilns include a durable shelf kit so that you can start work straight away, but several shelves can be stacked to make better use of your time and reduce the unit-cost of firing: so you might want more than one.


Although we chose to work with, sell, and provide classes in Art Clay, both makes fire in a similar way. So any kiln suitable for Art Clay will be just as good for PMC.

If you're currently using PMC, try Art Clay. There are differences in the feel, the shrinkage, the strength, the surface lustre, the product range, the pricing, and the general commercial setup if you're running a serious business.


To learn more, use the links below the menu bar near the top of the page. You can buy ArtClay, bronze clay, copper clay, gold clay, and related products in the on-line shop.

BRONZE CLAY
Bronze-Copper Lobster Bangle By Gordon Uyehara.

Bronze Clay And BronzClay.

There are three popular makes of bronze clay: Bronze Clay made by ClayMania, BronzClay made by Metal Adventures, and Prometheus Bronze ProClay made by Odak. They're all clay-like materials made of fine bronze powder and water-soluble organic binders. However, they're fired in different ways:

Prometheus Bronze Clay is easy to fire: wrap your dried work in kitchen tissue or ceramic cloth, put it on a kiln shelf, and programme the temperature and hold time. It can also be fired in charcoal.

Clay Mania Bronze Clay and MetalAdventures BronzClay fire in a special way. Fired normally, the surface would oxidise so, to minimize this, they're embedded in activated charcoal granules in a covered stainless steel container. Charcoal made from coconut shells produces a natural bronze colour, and charcoal made from coal produces a colourful range of patinas.

As they're fired, the binders vapourise, releasing very small amounts of non-toxic carbon dioxide and water, and the metal powder sinters, leaving solid bronze, an alloy of 89% copper and 11% tin: real metal, not something that just looks like metal.


The stainless steel container for the Paragon SC-2 measures 162mm x 176mm x 100mm high, and holds 1 litre of charcoal. To fire larger pieces, or more pieces at the same time, you'll need a larger kiln, such as the Paragon Xpress E-12A. The container for the E-12A measures 265mm x 162mm x 152mm high and holds 3 litres of charcoal.

The 1230°C firebrick E12A costs more than the 1095°C ceramic-fibre SC2. However, it's two and a half times larger than the SC-2 and is a versatile mixed-media kiln suited to continual high temperatures.

Particulates represent a health risk if they're breathed in, so wear a HEPA mask when cleaning out your kiln, mixing kiln wash, and working with charcoals, ceramic-fibre blocks, cloths, and papers. And, ideally, use protective glasses.

All jewellery kilns include a durable shelf kit so that you can start work straight away, but several shelves can be stacked to make better use of your time and reduce the unit-cost of firing: so you might want more than one.


I can't recommend one clay as being the best. There are differences in the feel, the firing, the shrinkage, the strength, and the surface patinas, so try them and experiment: they're not expensive.
However, as Prometheus Bronze Clay is easy to fire and costs less than the others, try it first? It comes as 100gm of soft clay in a packet, or 10gm of creamy clay in a syringe with three tips that you can cut or shape.

There's also Creative Bronze, which is almost certainly Prometheus Bronze Clay renamed. I'll leave it you to work out why very similar products can differ so much in price.


Also, in November 2014, 100gms of Art Clay Silver Clay costs about 12 times more than Prometheus Bronze Clay. So, if you're still in the learning phase, you can try out ideas before possibly wasting your expensive silver clay. However, bronze is a beautiful metal so, as with many materials, you need to exploit its qualities and try to produce beautiful original pieces.

To learn more, use the links below the menu bar near the top of the page. You can buy ArtClay, bronze clay, copper clay, gold clay, and related products in the on-line shop.

COPPER CLAY
Copper Earring By Zina Kuscynska Richterova.

Copper Clay And CopprClay.

There are four popular makes of copper clay: Art Clay Copper made by Aida Chemical Industries, Copper Clay made by ClayMania, CopprClay made by Metal Adventures, and Prometheus Copper ProClay made by Odak. They're all clay-like materials made of fine copper powder and water-soluble organic binders. However, they're fired in different ways:

Clay Mania Copper Clay and MetalAdventures CopprClay fire in a special way. Fired normally, the surface would oxidise so, to minimize this, they're embedded in activated charcoal granules in a covered stainless steel container. Charcoal made from coconut shells produces a natural copper colour.

Art Clay Copper is easy to fire: put your dried work on a kiln shelf, and programme the temperature and hold time. In most kilns, several shelves can be stacked to make better use of your time: so you might want more than one.

Prometheus Copper Clay is easy to fire: wrap your dried work in kitchen tissue or ceramic cloth, put it on a kiln shelf, and programme the temperature and hold time. It can also be fired in charcoal.

As they're fired, the binders vapourise, releasing very small amounts of non-toxic carbon dioxide and water, and the metal powder sinters, leaving solid copper: real metal, not something that just looks like metal.


The stainless steel container for the Paragon SC-2 measures 162mm x 176mm x 100mm, and holds 1 litre of charcoal. To fire larger pieces, or more pieces at the same time, you'll need a larger kiln, such as the Paragon Xpress E-12A. The container for the E-12A measures 265mm x 162mm x 152mm and holds 3 litres of charcoal.

The 1230°C firebrick E12A costs more than the 1095°C ceramic-fibre SC2. However, it's two and a half times larger than the SC-2 and is a versatile mixed-media kiln suited to continual high temperatures.

Particulates represent a health risk if they're breathed in, so wear a HEPA mask when cleaning out your kiln, mixing kiln wash, and working with charcoals, ceramic-fibre blocks, cloths, and papers. And, ideally, use protective glasses.

All jewellery kilns include a durable shelf kit so that you can start work straight away, but several shelves can be stacked to make better use of your time and reduce the unit-cost of firing: so you might want more than one.


I can't recommend one clay as being the best. There are differences in the feel, the firing, the shrinkage, the strength, and the surface patinas, so try them and experiment: they're not expensive.
However, as Prometheus Copper Clay is easy to fire and costs less than the others, try it first? It comes as 100gm of soft clay in a packet, or 10gm of creamy clay in a syringe with three tips that you can cut or shape.

There's also Creative Copper, which is almost certainly Prometheus Copper Clay renamed. I'll leave it you to work out why very similar products can differ so much in price.


Also, in November 2014, 100gms of Art Clay Silver Clay costs about 12 times more than Prometheus Copper Clay. So, if you're still in the learning phase, you can try out ideas before possibly wasting your expensive silver clay. However, copper is a beautiful metal so, as with many materials, you need to exploit its qualities and try to produce beautiful original pieces.

To learn more, use the links below the menu bar near the top of the page. You can buy ArtClay, bronze clay, copper clay, gold clay, and related products in the on-line shop.

GOLD CLAY
Gold Clay Pendant By Claudia S Atkins.

Aida Art Clay Gold And Mitsubishi PMC Gold Clay.

There are two popular makes of gold clay: Art Clay made by Aida Chemical Industries and PMC made by Mitsubishi Materials Corporation, in Japan. They're both clay-like materials made of fine gold powder and water-soluble organic binders.

Art Clay Gold and PMC Gold, sometimes just called gold clay, metal clay, or precious-metal clay, are easy to fire: put your dried work on a kiln shelf and programme the temperature and hold-time.

As they're fired, the binders vapourise, releasing very small amounts of non-toxic carbon dioxide and water, and the metal powder sinters, leaving solid 22 carat gold: real metal, not something that just looks like metal.

All jewellery kilns include a durable shelf kit so that you can start work straight away, but several shelves can be stacked to make better use of your time and reduce the unit-cost of firing: so you might want more than one.


Although we chose to work with, sell, and provide classes in Art Clay, both makes fire in a similar way. So any kiln suitable for Art Clay will be just as good for PMC.

If you're currently using PMC, try Art Clay. There are differences in the feel, the shrinkage, the strength, the surface lustre, the product range, the pricing, and the general commercial setup if you're running a serious business.


To learn more, use the links below the menu bar near the top of the page. You can buy ArtClay, bronze clay, copper clay, gold clay, and related products in the on-line shop.

A BRIEF INTRODUCTION TO GLASS AND GEMS

Obsidian. Fish. Curved Glass by Infabbrica. Lauscha By Carrie Fertig.

What Is Glass?

The main component of glass is silicon dioxide, often called silica: found naturally and plentifully as sand. When it melts, at around 1700°C, it's like syrup on a cold day. When it cools, it forms a rigid brittle glass called quartz glass.

To lower the melting point, and reduce the cost of melting, chemicals are added: typically sodium carbonate and calcium oxide. Other chemicals, and different heating and cooling processes, produce a range of colours and mechanical properties.

Chemically, glass is defined as an amorphous solid but, as it's heated, it becomes softer allowing it to be blown, cast, coated, decorated, engraved, heat-treated, moulded, poured, pressed, sagged, and slumped.

A form of glass occurs naturally within the mouth of a volcano when the intense heat of an eruption melts sand to form Obsidian, a hard black-to-brown glassy type of stone, shown in the photo. Although it was used decoratively, when it fractures it has very sharp edges, many times sharper than a steel knife-edge, so was also used for tools and weapons: and the pitiful rituals of circumcision and female genital mutilation.

ANNEALING
Annealed Beads Made Into A Necklace.

What Is Annealing?

Very briefly, annealing generally involves heating glass or metal to it's annealing point, maintaining a specific temperature for a set time, and then cooling it to room temperature.

During annealing, fabrication stresses are relieved as the molecules cool and arrange themselves into a regular stable matrix. Successful annealing is the key to creating work that will remain attractive and durable. It can be quite a long process, and involve multiple phases, so a kiln with an automatic comprehensive programmer is essential.

FREE BEAD ANNEALING GUIDE

A Bead Annealing Guide.

You can download, and print, a Bead Annealing Guide. Paragon created it in 2013 so it's only a guide, not a contemporary definitive document. Click here. It's a pdf file, but your device should already have a pdf viewer.

BOILED GLASS
Boiled Glass.

Glass scraps, with optional bubble powder, are put in a tray or a mould and heated. As the temperature increases the glasses begin to bubble. The bubbles mix the colours and give a natural organic appearance. The glasses need to be compatible as different colours and expansion coefficient might not work, so the boiled glass technique needs experiment and practice.

You increase the temperature at about 300°C per hour to 925°C with no bubble squeeze and soak for 10–15 minutes. Then allow the kiln to drop the temperature as fast as possible to about 815°C and soak there for around 30 minutes to allow the little bubbles to rise to the surface and burst. Then reduce to the annealing temperature and soak for the thickness you calculated in preparation for the firing.

CUBIC ZIRCONIA
Cubic Zirconia.

What Are Cubic Zirconia.

Cubic Zirconia is the most popular substitute for a diamond because they look almost dentical. Cubic Zirconia or CZ, is made from zirconium dioxide which comes closer than any other gem to matching the characteristics of a diamond. It's not quite as hard as diamond and is slightly less sparkly but displays more prismatic fire with more colour sparkles within the gem, especially if metal oxides are added during the production process.

Caring for CZ is important because they are more brittle than diamonds and susceptible to wear and tear such as chipping and scratches over time.

DECALS
Rose By Arwen Moore Design.

What Are Decals?

A decal or transfer is an image or pattern printed on a ceramic, cloth, paper, or plastic substrate that can be moved on to another surface, usually with the aid of water and heat.

A wet decal can be slid into position, allowed to dry, and then heated in a kiln. Most ceramic decals come with a cone number for easy firing, typically cone 022. The programmer on the Paragon Fusion 7XL has pre-set cone numbers as well as the normal ramp-hold options used for general glass work.

Decals are a quick and fun way to decorate bottles, glasses, and vases, as most low-fire ceramic decals and low-fire glass decals will work very well, even on float glass.

DIAMONDS
Diamond.

What Are Diamonds?

Diamonds are not a form of glass: they're naturally occurring gems composed of carbon atoms arranged in a very regular pattern.

Between 1 billion to 3.3 billion years ago, simple carbon containing trace minerals was transformed into diamonds by heat and pressure at depths of over 100 miles below the earth’s surface. We can’t mine down far enough to reach the earth’s mantle but fortunately volcanic eruptions brought the diamonds closer to the surface. They're extremely hard and until recently were regarded as the world's hardest natural material.

Although diamonds are extremely expensive, their price is governed by carat, cut, colour, and clarity. It’s very rare to find a diamond that doesn’t contain flaws: however the impurities, and internal refraction and dispersion of light, give diamonds their brilliance.


Synthetic diamonds are manufactured and are identical in hardness, dispersion, gravity, refraction and chemical composition to the highest quality mined diamonds available. Whereas a one-carat top quality diamond would cost thousands of pounds to buy, the same quality man-made diamond could be made for less than £5.

This will obviously have a huge impact on the diamond industry over the next few years as when comparing a cultured and mined diamond side by side they are virtually undistinguishable. A bit like pearls, they can be grown from a single crystal using chemical vapor deposition.

DICHROIC GLASS
Dichroic Glass.

What Are Dichroic Glasses.

Dichroic glass has two different colours: a transmitted colour and a reflective colour, both of which change depending on the angle of view. For example blue-red will be blue in transmission and red in reflection.

During manufacture, quartz and metal oxides are vapourised onto the surface of the glass using a vacuum deposition process, forming a multi-layer crystal structure.

ENAMELLING
Enamelled Jewellery.

What Is Enamelling?

Enamelling involves applying a glass paste to metal and then heating it to fuse it to the surface. The finish of the enamel can be translucent or opaque depending on the temperature used to melt the glass. Higher temperatures result in a more transparent and durable enamel whilst lower temperatures give a more opaque and fragile surface. Dyes and pigments can be included to produce any colour.

The Paragon SC2 is ideal for enamelling, although other kilns are fine. So click the sc2-sc3:jewellery link below the menu bar near the top of the page. The SC-2W and SC-3W doors include a 50mm x 50mm heat-resistant glass viewing-window in the centre of the door, allowing you to take a quick peep at china paints, enamels, glass, and glazes to check on their progress

FIRE POLISHING
Fire Polished Glass.

What Is Fire Polishing?

To fire polish glass, return the items to the kiln and melt them just enough to give a smooth polished appearance. It needs a temperature of around 700°C, and is often used to round the edges of glass after fusing.

Fire polishing already-slumped items is more difficult because the polishing temperature is close to the slumping temperature and it can distort the appearance of the piece. So it generally works best for flat items, rather than slumped ones. It has the slight limitation that the part of the item that touches the kiln shelf won't polish.

FUSING, SAGGING, AND SLUMPING
Fused Glass.

What Is Glass Fusing?

If two or more pieces of glass in contact are heated, they begin to soften and fuse together. With careful heating and cooling, the separate pieces of glass become one.

If glass is put on a mould and heated, it begins to soften and collapse, or sag, onto the mould: a common technique for making bowls and plates.

Sagging and slumping are often thought of as being the same. Correctly: during sagging, heated glass, supported at its edges, sags down in the middle to conform to a mould; during slumping, heated glass, supported at its middle, slumps down at its edges to conform to a mould.

LAMPWORK AND BEADS
Beads.

What Is Lampwork?

Lamp-working is the traditional name for glasswork that uses a flame to melt glass rods and tubes. As the glass softens, it's shaped by turning and using tools.

Early lampworkers used an oil-lamp, and blew air into the flame through a pipe. Later, propane, natural gas, or butane torches replaced the lamp, although kilns are now increasingly popular, particularly for annealing.

Beads are usually made on steel rods, or mandrels. When the beads are finished, the rods are removed leaving holes for threading the beads. Cold working techniques can be used, such as etching, faceting, polishing, and sandblasting.

LOST-WAX BURNOUT
Paragon W13 Lost Wax Casting Kiln With A Sentry Programmer.

What Is Lost Wax Burnout And Casting.

Lost-wax burnout starts with making a wax shape and then making a mould of the shape. When the mould is heated in a kiln, the wax melts out through channels, usually over a burnout grate and into a tray. The shape is then cast in glass or metal from the mould.

It's important to prevent wax or carbon sticking to the elements, so burnout kilns have a top vent to release the fumes. Carbon build-up inside a kiln conducts electricity and can cause the elements to short circuit.

I've written some general instructions here but, as always, making anything successfully needs critical research and frequent tests, especially as things that work for your friends and teachers might not work in the same way for you. It's also very important to learn how to creatively use unexpected effects.

The most popular kilns for lost wax processes are the Paragon W series: the W13, W14, and W18. Learn about these by using the w:lost-wax-burnout link below the menu bar near the top of the page. Wax burnout trays, glare-resistant glasses, and heat-resistant gloves are in the on-line shop.

HOW TO DO LOST WAX BURNOUT

How To Do Lost Wax Burnout And Casting.

1 : Place a metal tray inside the kiln on a few 12mm posts. Place the mould on a grate on top of the tray. The mould’s sprue holes should face down. The tray will catch melting wax as it drips from the sprue holes.

2 : Keep the kiln’s vent hole open during wax elimination. If the kiln has no vent hole, leave the door open 12mm. This allows fumes to escape from the kiln. Heat the kiln to 148°C and hold it at that temperature for at least one hour. Do NOT heat the wax above 148°C.

3 : During this hour, the wax will melt from the mould and drip into the tray. If the kiln gets hotter than 148°C, the wax may smoke and deposit carbon inside your kiln, causing expensive damage.

4 : After one hour at 148°C, open the kiln. Remove the mould and wax tray. Pour the wax from the tray and leave the tray out of the kiln until your next wax elimination. Don't leave the tray in the kiln.

5 : Harden the mould to the temperature recommended by your mould material manufacturer.

6 : Finally, adjust the temperature to the casting temperature of the glass or metal. Hold at that temperature until you are ready to begin casting. Remove the mould with tongs. Wear protective gloves and safety glasses.


Over time, a small amount of carbon can form on the firing chamber walls as any wax residue left in the mould burns off. So I recommend that you periodically open the vent or leave the door open 12mm, and fire the kiln empty to 815°C at a rate of 166°C with a one hour hold.

MOISSANITE
Moissanite.

What Is Moissanite.

Moissanite is another diamond substitute which is a rare mineral found naturally in small quantities, although Moissanite for jewellery is artificially made. It’s made from Silicon Carbide which means it’s able to withstand high temperatures and is very hard.

Moissanite is noticeably much sparklier and displays more prismatic fire than a diamond which is noticeable even to an untrained observer. Moissanite does have inclusions like a diamond and it may also have a greenish tinge to its colour.

PÂTE DE VERRE
Pâte De Verre.

What Is Pâte De Verre?

Pâte de verre involves making a glass paste, applying it to a mould, firing it, and removing the piece from the mould. The glass paste is usually made from glass powder, a binder such as gum arabic, distilled water, and colouring agents or enamels. It allows precise placing of colours in the mould, whereas other techniques often result in the glass straying from its intended position.

I think, currently, Daum is the only large commercial crystal manufacturer using the pâte de verre process for art glass and crystal sculptures.

SLUMPING BOTTLES
Slumped Bottle.

What Is Glass Slumping?

This a simple technique but it requires good ideas. A bottle, such as those used for wine, beer, cola, or champagne, is softened in a kiln so that it begins to flatten out or conforms to a mould. There are too many moulds to stock here but there are lots available on line. Or make your own from clay.

The bottles need to be clean and dry, with all paper labels and tops removed. Put them in your kiln on a shelf, either with shelf paper or kiln wash to prevent the glass sticking to the shelf.

Paragon makes a kiln designed for this: the Trio. So click the trio link below the menu bar near the top of the page. It's wide enough for most bottles but can still use a regular socket.

STAINED GLASS
Stained Glass.

What Is Stained Glass?

Stained glass is glass that has been coloured by adding metallic salts during its manufacture. The coloured glass is crafted into stained glass windows in which small pieces of glass are arranged to form patterns or pictures, traditionally held together by strips of lead and supported by a rigid frame. Painted details and yellow stain are often used to enhance the design.

The term stained glass is also applied to windows in which the colours have been painted onto the glass and then fused to the glass in a kiln.

It requires artistic skill to conceive an appropriate and workable design, and engineering skills to assemble the piece. A window must fit snugly into the space for which it is made, must resist wind and rain, and also, especially in the larger windows, must support its own weight. Many large windows have withstood the test of time and remained substantially intact since the Late Middle Ages.

SWAROVSKI CRYSTAL
Swarovski Crystal.

What Is Swarovski Crystal?

Swarovski Crystal isn’t a gemstone or even a crystal: it’s a form of glass made at high temperatures by melting silicon oxide powders with lead to form what is known as lead crystal. The exact process is patented by Swarovski but it has approximately 32% lead content to increase the crystals refraction index to resemble that of a diamond. To produce a diamond like effect the crystal glass is precision cut and then polished again by a Swarovski patented process that gives the crystal a high quality finish.

The crystals are often further enhanced by coating the glass with an Aurora Borealis or AB coating that gives the surface a rainbow like appearance to simulate dispersion from a diamond. Swarovski crystal is not as hard as diamond so its susceptible to scratches and chipping from wear and tear, but it’s harder than standard glass.

TACK FUSING
Tack Fused Glass.

What Is Tack Fusing?

Tack fusing is the joining together of glass, with as little change to the shape of the pieces as possible. Tack fusing may be used either decoratively, or to assemble a large piece of glass from laminations.

Where tack fusing is used to apply small decorative details to a larger piece, you might want to partially melt the small pieces so that they change shape, usually becoming more spherical under the influence of surface tension, but without changing the shape of the carrier piece. This can be done by using an increased temperature, but only briefly. The carrier piece has a larger thermal mass, so heats up more slowly than the small decorations.

VITRIGRAPH WORK
Glass Stringers. Paragon Caldera Kiln With A Sentry Xpress Programmer For Vitrigraph. Ceramic-Fibre Boards. Crucible.

What Is Vitrigraph?

The vitrigraph process usually uses a Paragon Caldera kiln to make glass stringers. The clip-on bottom of the kiln is removed and set aside. The kiln body is put on a thick ceramic rectangle with a central hole. The rectangle is put on two wall brackets or any stable structure away from the floor.

A crucible of glass is put in the kiln and, as it heats, the moulten glass falls through a hole in the crucible to form long stringers. Skilled artists can control the thickness of the stringers and can even draw with the glass as it comes out.


The Caldera needs a 500mm x 400mm x 50mm rectangle, which we cut for you from a much larger sheet. Normal kiln shelves are made from cordierite: a very dense hard ceramic. A suitable-size rectangle would be fairly heavy and hard to cut and drill, so we we use ceramic-fibre board. Ceramic-fibre rectangles are in the on-line shop.

Ceramic-fibre board is made from vacuum-formed fibre. It doesn't retain heat, has a low thermal conductivity, and is stable at temperatures up to 1430°C. If you need to trim it, use a knife, handsaw, or electric jigsaw, but cut it neatly because, as it's fibrous, you can't use a file or sandpaper successfully.


When you work with any fibrous material, don't get the fibres on your hands or breathe them in: ideally, you should put on gloves, wear a HEPA dust mask, use clear protective glasses, and wash your hands afterwards.

WARM GLASS
Warm Glass Flower Bowl.

What Is Warm Glass?

The term warm glass refers to fusing, slumping, and other glass processes which take place at temperatures between about 600°C to 925°C. Although that doesn't sound warm, it is when you compare it to glassblower's working temperatures, which often exceed 1100°C. Warm glass is sometimes called kiln-formed glass.

PROMETHEUS KILNS

A Cherry Heaven Internet Resource.

is a Cherry Heaven internet resource. Cherry Heaven is a top-tier international distributor for Texas-made Paragon kilns, furnaces, and ovens, and has been one of their top-selling partners from 2006 to : a pleasing outcome since the UK is only one third the area of Texas and one fortieth the area of the US.

As this is an on-line resource, there isn't a paper catalogue or a price list. However, you can mail or call a technician about kilns, power supplies, public area safety, a special project, business ideas, diagnostics, repairs, or reselling opportunities.


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