Please Make Us a Box!

I wish someone would manufacture a fiber box that we could buy and use as a long-lasting firing box for our base metal clay. How hard can it be? Just a step further from the fiber board we use as a kiln shelf.

Until then, here is how you can improvise a fiber firing box.

Buy 2-3 fiber boards. The cost of each is $8-$10.

Use a craft knife to cut a square inside one or two of the boards, about 1/2″ away from the edges. Now you have a fiber “frame.”

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The uncut fiber board will serve as the “floor” of the box. Place the frame on top of the “floor.”

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As an option, to create a deeper box, two frames (rather than just one) can be placed on top of the “floor,” as shown in the photo below.

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Insert nickel-chromium wire (a.k.a. nichrome or high-temp wire) through the frame and through the “floor” board.

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Pull the wire through the “floor” and across the outer side of the “floor.” Re-insert the wire through the outer side of the “floor,” and pull it out through the frame.

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Cut the wire, leaving at least a 5″ length of wire on each side.

Repeat this with the other two sides of the box.

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When making a deep box, instead of a second frame, you can use strips of fiber blanket.

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(As an alternative, you can take the small square which you cut out to create the first frame, cut it into strips, and stack the strips on top of the first frame.)

Tie the four ends of the wire together to make a handle for the box.

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As a reminder, rather than using a box, you can simply arrange kiln posts around your kiln shelf to make a box.

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(This method is described in the instruction manual for Hadar’s Clay™ Quick-fire Copper and Bronze.) Although this method works fine and is easy to construct, the disadvantage is that it cannot be removed as easily from the kiln, since the kiln posts are not held together.


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