I’m now told that wood-fired kilns regularly achieve temperatures to cone 12 and above: 2500F! Considering that a direct-fire method is used, rather than a gasification scheme, how is this possible? Merely stoking every 2 minutes with small size fuel? Apparently slab waste is sometimes preferred because of the fast burn and the bark contributes different minerals to the ash environment to alter the glaze chemistry, giving the artsy, one-of-a-kind look. Are we missing an opportunity by using lower temperature (2000F) gasification designs? I’d like to see bronzecasting and other higher temp processes done with biomass, but 2000 is just a bit too low. For those interested in power generation, would the higher temp be helpful? Or am I just missing something on the study of fire?

You are correct, gasification occurs at the lower temp. discussed, but burning of the wood gas can be much hotter. You are correct about burning the fuel directly from the glazing point of view. What Ron Larson and I are after, is a charcoal making gasification system, that utilizes the gas for the kiln, while making a byproduct (charcoal). The ash could be sprinkled over the glaze at the exact right time making a unique, well controlled product. Another critical advantage to this system, is lower emissions. Ron and I have discussed off-list, developing such a devise for you. If you are interested in working with some expert consultants on the project, this could be a first of it’s kind prototype, and your name could be associated with it. If this sounds appealing, contact Ronal Larson directly.

Then what would I do with the charcoal? Landfill it? Just kidding, I know there aresomepeople that could want it. My blacksmith isn’t even aware that it is possible to use charcoal. I would have to pay someone to take it. Since the softwood lumber tarrifs I can’t even get rid of my wood by burning! In BC we have an area of pine killed by beetles that holds 60,000,000 cubic metres of wood! The stumpage cost is CAD$0.25 per cubic metre (plus about $20 for logging). If we want to do something using wood as fuel, there are possibilities, to say the least. I’m just a microbusiness though. We would have to find a way to fund this development. The client that was considering wood-firing pottery has moved on to a plan using propane.

Don’t give up, we are mostly struggling microbusinesses on these lists. I’m a landscaper/dreamer. I am working on reviving old charcoal iron making processes. A major iron mine has expressed serious interest in my work. Get with the stoves list, and gasification list, and learn modern charcoal making. Teach your blacksmith about the benefits of charcoal as the cleanest fuel. Tell him about Anvilfire.com website. You can learn there too.

I like the letter you wrote to wastewatts that follows this one (about microbusiness) and strongly invite you to forward it to gasification and stoves lists. That is a GREAT and encouraging observation. I hope to sell iron and steel into these markets. All these guys will really like what you have to say. I am enjoying wood heat now, and use it for my greenhouse too. I cut and hand split 20 cords of hardwood a year. Burn it in 3 woodstoves. My charcoal foundry will replace some of this heat for my greenhouse by spring, I hope. Any help I can be, I’m just a few keystrokes away.