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Pre-firing Fiber Paper

This is part two of a three-part tip on pre-firing fiber paper in your kiln. Click here to go to part one.

5.  It's usually not a good idea to stack fiber paper and try to pre-fire many sheets at one time.  Because there is poor airflow between the stacked sheets, the likelihood of burning off all of the binder in the papers is slim.

6.  Once the kiln is loaded, you can fire as quickly as your kiln allows.  It's not really possible to thermal shock fiber paper, so there's no need to fire slowly.  (But do remember to vent the kiln about one inch to 1000F/540C.)

7.  When pre-firing, fire to around 1400F/760C.  Some papers do not require firing this high, but if you fire to this temperature you can be assured that the binders will be fired out for virtually all common papers.

8.  Don't be alarmed if the paper turns black when pre-firing.  This is normal, and generally occurs from 700F to 900F (370C to 480C).  Continue firing.  As the binder burns off the paper will return to its original off-white or gray color. 

9.  Once the heating cycle is complete, you can simply turn the kiln off and allow it to cool.  If you wish, you can accelerate the cooling by opening the kiln to allow hot air to escape. 

10.  Remember, once the paper has been pre-fired, it will be more fragile than before pre-firing, so handle it with care to prevent accidental damage.

Click here to go to part three of this tip.

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Copyright 2005 Brad Walker.  All rights reserved.

This list compiled from numerous sources, but especially from the Warm Glass bulletin board and from published manufacturer's materials.

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