Lighting Torchbearer & Raku Gas Kilns
Turn on the gas supply. If you purchase either the Olympic Torchbearer or Raku kiln without an ignition system, you will use a fire stick to light each burner once you have turned on the gas valve. If you purchase the Olympic Torchbearer or Raku kiln with an ignition system, depress the red button on the top of the magnetic valve and light the pilot bar or ring. The needle valve should be adjusted to allow sufficient gas flow to propagate a flame entirely along the pilot when it is ignited at any point. Once the pilot is ignited the thermocouple sensor is hot and the valve will stay open by itself, Turning the gas hand valve on the burner manifold lights the burners.
Ignition System & Thermocouple Safety Shut-off
Options for the Raku and Torchbearer kilns include adding a Pyrometer, analog or digital, which will display the kiln’s temperature during a firing. The digital High Limit Controller provides a digital temperature display while the kiln is firing and the kiln operator is able to program the controller to an end temperature for the kiln to shut-off when it reaches the target temperature. 120-volt outlet required for High Limit Controller.
- Lights the multiple burner system from one point.
- Maintains the flame on each burner.
- Re-ignites any burner that may extinguish.
- Stops the gas flow after an interruption
Furniture Kits are available for Olympic gas kilns providing 3 layers of shelving (6 half shelves 19" x 9" x 1"), assorted large square posts and a pound bag of kiln wash. If you choose to create your own furniture kit or simply want to purchase a couple of shelves, make sure you choose shelves for gas kilns. Gas kiln shelves are smaller in diameter than electric kiln shelves.
The first layer of shelves must be 3” above the kiln floor for proper airflow. We recommend kiln shelves have a 1” space in the middle as you stack for proper airflow in the kiln. The direction of the shelves can be alternated from one level to another and ware can be placed on the 1” space between the shelves. The top layer of shelves may be less than 1” apart. 18” Torchbearer and 18 Raku kilns have full shelves that may be used; however, the 3” stacking rule still applies.
Venting Gas Kilns
Proper ventilation is required when firing a gas kiln. Gas kilns fired outside may not require a vent but any gas kiln fired indoors will require ventilation. When purchasing vents it is often best to choose a local HVAC or sheet metal manufacturer, or Olympic Kilns can build one for you. Vent dimensions need to be round or square in a cone shape and the bottom of the vent needs to be larger than the outside diameter of the kiln. Diameter at the top of the vent needs to be 10” discharging into a nonflammable double walled exhaust pipe to extend out of the top of the cone and through the wall or ceiling to the outside determined by building conditions and local codes.
Place the vent 18” above the kiln damper and centered over the kiln.
Vent hoods available from Olympic 18” & 23” gas kilns – 36” x 36” stainless steel hood 28” gas kilns – 40” x 40” stainless steel hood DownDraft gas kilns – 48” x 48” stainless or galvanized steel hood
Gas Usage for Olympic Torchbearer & Raku Kilns
Olympic gas kilns burners are factory set for use on either propane or natural gas determined by the customer’s order. If propane is used, your tank must have a low-pressure regulator like those on a camper or trailer. If an adjustable regulator is used approximately ½ pound of pressure is necessary. A ¾” diameter pipeline connected to the gas source and kiln is needed for the gas kiln to receive the optimum gas flow.
Gas kilns running on propane require 11” water column (water column is the amount of gas pressure needed) and gas kilns running on natural gas require 7” water column pressure.
A five (5) gallon or tank is the minimum size for the 1827G or 18 Raku and a 15 gallon tank is the minimum size for the 2327G/23 Raku and 2827G/28 Raku kilns. Due to gas flow, the propane tank may have a tendency to freeze solid. If ice is observed forming on the outside of the tank, water can be run over it to help keep it melted. The tank can also be lowered into a large bucket of warm water.
A larger burner orifice in necessary when used on natural gas pressure, six (6) to eight (8) inches of water column is required. If your kiln was ordered for use on household natural gas, it is equipped this way.
Receiving Your Kiln
Olympic Kilns packs its merchandise so that it will arrive at its destination undamaged. Olympic orders are FOB origin when they leave our loading dock. This means we hold the carrier's receipt that your order left in good condition. We do not allow any deductions from invoices for damaged ware. It is the receiver's responsibility to understand and comply with standard shipping and receiving practices as described in this section. The carrier is responsible for transporting your freight but not for unloading it. A lift gate is required if you do not have a loading dock for shipments delivered by freight carrier. UPS and FEDEX will deliver smaller shipments to your door.
If you do not have a loading dock, a lift gate for transporting the freight from the truck to ground level is required upon delivery. You will need to request lift gate service when ordering your kiln from your Olympic dealer. Otherwise additional freight charges will be incurred upon delivery of freight. It is your responsibility to move the freight from the truck to its place of use.
Lift gates are available for kilns on 6 ft. x 6 ft. pallets or smaller. Any Commercial Glass Fusing kiln and 20 cubic feet or larger Commercial Electric and Downdraft Gas models require the customer to have a forklift that can move the kiln from the truck to the desired location. If you do not have access to a forklift, check the internet or yellow pages for small moving companies that can take the freight off the long distance carrier and move the freight to the desired location. Give any prospective mover a physical description of the kiln, the weight, and inform them that it is designed to be picked up with a pallet truck or forklift only.
Adequate space - at least 12 inches of space between the kiln and the wall. All flammable materials such as curtains, plastics, etc. in the area of the kiln should be removed.
Proper ventilation - if the kiln is located in a confined area it is essential that an exhaust hood be place above the kiln and vented to the outside. This ensures removal of heat and exhaust gases including carbon monoxide. Even if the kiln is outside be sure that the hot exhaust gases do not cause damage.
A 120-volt outlet will needed if a High Limit Electronic Controller is purchased with the kiln.
If the kiln is to be placed outside, ensure that moisture is not permitted. Use a roof over the kiln or some type water resistant tarp when the kiln is not being fired.
Because all kilns generate heat, the burner system/stand should be placed on a cement floor. Vinyl tiles or linoleum could be damaged without this precaution. It is important that the kiln be fired only on the metal stand or frame provided with the burner system. The eleven-inch height of the frame is necessary for proper burner positioning and adequate cooling beneath the kiln. Remember to use sheet metal or non-flammable material to shim the legs when leveling the kiln.
Assembly of Kiln
Olympic raku kilns are shipped ready to fire. There is not any assembly of putting the kiln together. Torchbearer kilns are built in sections and require assembly when received.
Olympic Torchbearer kilns are built in rings and may be detached and reattached when moving from one location to another. When handling your new kiln rings, always be sure to grasp the rings by the outer surface only. Do not grasp the bricks as they are made of a porous material and may chip in your hand. Raku kilns are shipped fully assembled.
After making certain the stand is level, adjust the burner manifold so the pipe section on top of each air mixer is approximately ½ inch below the bottom of the kiln. The kiln bottom must be positioned on the stand so each burner is directly beneath one of the holes.
Position the burners with the gas valve on the right side when you are facing the kiln, however, if it is more convenient to place the manifold in another position be sure to align the burners with the holes in the kiln bottom.
The kiln rings may now be stacked with the hose clamps in back and the observation holes aligned in front. If the kiln has the optional ignition system with safety shut-off the thermocouple needs to be placed directly over the pilot. Once the kiln is assembled, be sure the inside is clean and free of dust. It may be necessary to vacuum the inside of the kiln at regular intervals.