Friday, January 21, 2011

Vent-Sure Installation 1-21-11

Today I installed an L&L Vent-Sure vent system on a Skutt kiln. Because the Vent-Sure system is made to attach directly to the L&L kiln stand, you cannot hook up this vent to the bottom of other brands of kilns. However this is not a problem. The collection box can be mounted to the side of a kiln without any loss of functionality. Most other brands of vents have a collection box that pushes up against the floor of the kiln from underneath, rubbing on the brick. This is not good for the brick, and if the ductwork gets kicked, it can move the collection box out of alignment with the holes in the kiln. I prefer the L&L method of mounting, because the venting never touches the bricks, and is held in place with screws.

It's a simple installation- just drill the proper size and number of venting holes through the side of the kiln, making sure to avoid the elements, and attached the collection box to the kiln case with sheet metal screws. Then attach the 3" flexible duct to the box.

The motor for the vent can be mounted several different ways. If the ductwork is going out through the wall, the cleanest looking method is to mount it directly to the wall, with the attached duct going through the wall to the outside. In a basement where the duct exits up high, or if the ductwork is going through the ceiling/roof, you have to use a mounting bracket to hold the fan motor. I use the mounting bracket on most of my installations because it allows for mounting in just about any position. I usually mount it to the floor, but in basements I like to mount it to the wall, a couple of feet up from the floor, in case the basement ever floods. For today's job, there just wasn't much room on the floor or on the wall, which is often the case is small home studios. So I mounted the fan to the floor joist above the kiln, which gave me a direct line to the wall where the duct exits the building.

Everything is against the wall and up high, out of the way. Plus, the customer already has an electrical box in the ceiling right by the kiln where they can install a power outlet for the vent. Piece of cake!

Even when the kiln is at 2300 degrees, the air in the duct is below 160 degrees. This is accomplished by pulling a large volume of air from the room, and just enough from the kiln to remove the fumes. The collection box on the vent has a damper that allows the draw from the kiln to be adjusted. By closing the damper, the vent will pull more air from the kiln, and less from the room. By opening it, the vent will draw less from the kiln, more from the room. It's a pretty slick system. Plus you can add more kilns to the system, up to 20 cubic feet of kiln space total. I hooked up 3 kilns to one of these vents last week, by having dampers on the ducts that control which kiln is being vented. The customer never fires more than 2 kilns at a time, so it's a perfect system for her.

The Vent-Sure kiln venting system retails for $440, but you can find them on sale online for as low as $350, like from me.

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