FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
What is the difference between and Easy-Fire kiln and a Jupiter kiln?
The Easy-Fire kilns were designed to meet the need for an uncomplicated easy-to-buy kiln that meets the
majority of kiln users’ needs. We selected four popular sizes and restricted the line to automatic only. There are
virtually no options. On the other hand, we decided to use all of our best technology like element holders,
thermocouple protection tubes, “Easy-Lift, Easy-Load” spring hinge, heavy-duty elements and zone control so,
for the most part, there are no options you would likely want to add. We redesigned the control panel to remove
the plug-in cords which some people find objectionable (yet others love). This results in a sleeker kiln that is
more acceptable in many classrooms and studios. However, even with this new design we maintained the
famous L&L tradition of an easy-to-service and easy-to-remove control panel that is isolated as much as
possible from the heat of the kiln. We also took advantage of the simplicity of the design to increase the power
of the kilns. Because there are so few models we could maximize the power on each voltage and phase
without implication to other models. This is just too complicated to do on the Jupiter line. Long story short is
that, if the size and configuration of the Easy-Fire models suits you go ahead and buy an Easy-Fire kiln. If you
want a manual kiln or one of the many sizes of the Jupiter line or one of the many options available in that line
then by all means get a Jupiter. You will find that feature for feature the Easy-Fire line is a better price and this is
partly a direct result of the simplicity and uniformity of the line. One might compare the difference to a “prefix
menu” vs an “a la cart menu” – the choice is yours.
What is the difference between a Jupiter kiln and a DaVinci kiln?
The DaVinci kilns are normally larger and are square and rectangular in shape. For some the shape is
critical (for tiles for instance) and makes the kiln for efficient in terms of usable space. For others the size is
the issue. There are simple so other sectional kilns that are made this large. The counterbalanced lid
system and angle-iron stand are very heavy-duty on the DaVinci kilns and make even the heaviest lid easy to
lift. The control panels on most DaVinci kilns (except the X2327, X2336 and X2345 which use a Jupiter panel
mounted on the kiln) are floor standing and feature 50 amp circuits. The DynaTrol on the DaVinci kilns (again
except for the X2300 models mentioned) is a handheld model that attaches to the kiln with a four-foot cable
and can hang on the wall or the panel. The DaVinci kilns are use 3” brick. The share many of the same
options like Dawson back-up for automatic kilns, bottom elements, etc.
Where can I buy L&L Kilns?
Call the factory for a recommednation or call our factory to place an order direct if you prefer to buy direct.
How Should I place an order if I order direct?
Call the factory or fax. See our list of important questions to ask yourself before ordering from the factory.
What payment do you accept?
Money order, check, wire transfer, Visa, MasterCard and American Express are accepted. Payment by wire
transfer, money order or credit card will allow immediate processing of your order. Payment by personal
check requires a three-week delay for check to clear. No COD's on kilns, (parts are OK). Purchase orders are
accepted from schools and companies; however, credit must be preapproved. Companies must have a Dun
& Bradstreet Paydex score of 65 or better. Call, fax or email for the instructions on how to wire transfer. Wire
transfers are particularly helpful for export transactions..
Get more information.
Are kilns returnable?
Kilns are not returnable. Each kiln is configured to order. We try hard to make your choice easy by providing
as much information as possible but we ask that you make a careful choice.
What happens if I order the wrong voltage or phase?
Changing the phase is easy on a Jupiter or DaVinci kiln because of the unique way in which we do our
circuits. Changing the phase on an Easy-Fire kiln requires switching the control panel - which is very easy to
do. Contact factory for details. Changing the voltage is not so easy. You need to change all the elements.
While we do not accept responsibility for others mistakes we do our best to minimize the expense. Call the
factory if this happens.
Does L&L Export?
Yes! Orders for export will be shipped by ocean or air, freight collect. Mexico and Canada can ship by
common carrier. Import and export licenses, duties, tariffs, etc. are expenses due from the purchaser. We
can quote CIF shipping charges.
Click here for more export information.
How to get to the L&L factory and can I visit?
We are open from 8:30am - 5:00 pm Monday through Friday. You must call ahead for an appointment. Click
here for directions.
SHIPPING QUESTIONS [Go to top]
How much does it cost to ship a kiln?
Talk to your local distributor or call our factory for a shipping quote (if you are buying direct from the factory).
How are L&L kilns packed?
Easy-Fire, Liberty-Belle, Jupiter, Chameleon, Doll/Test kilns and GS1714 Colorado kilns are protected with
advanced foam-in-place in heavy-duty skidded cartons. DaVinci kilns typically come in two skidded wood
crates or cartons. Our free advanced packaging has virtually eliminated shipping damage. Export crating is
by special quote but is normally not required if kilns ship by container (which is almost always the case for
ocean freight). Airfreight does not need any special packing.
Click here for more information.
What is the freight classification?
Class 85 for kilns.
What is the FOB (Freight on Board) point?
All kilns are shipped from our factory in Swedesboror, NJ (10 miles south of Philadelphia PA).
What do I do if there is shipping damage?
Click here for more information.
What freight companies does L&L use? Can I specify a freight
company?
We use a variety of companies. We try to use only freight lines that we have had good experience with. The
ones we currently prefer are Overnite, Ward, APA, American Freightways, Yellow and Federal Express. You
can specify a freight company if you have a preference. L&L will make all shipping arrangements with you
prior to shipping. Tailgate loading is available for an extra charge (typically $75). This is where the trucker will
lower the kiln to the ground with a special tailgate lift. If you buy from a local distributor they may offer delivery
and set up.
.
How easy is the set up of L&L kilns?
Setting up any of our kilns is very simple. The sectional design of the Jupiter and DaVinci kilns makes
moving the kiln exceptionally easy - even down steps or through narrow doorways. The DaVinci
counterbalance comes apart. Two people can carry the largest DaVinci section. Just locate and level the
stand, stack the sections, plug in the control panel and have an electrician hook up power. If you bought a
vent you will need to install the motor on an outside wall. Set-up instructions (with photographs) are attached
to the outside of the carton and take you through the process step-by-step starting with unpacking. See the
following:
Can L&L ship kilns Prepay and Add?
Yes.
Can L&L ship kilns collect?
No.
What are the packing charges for parts?
Click here for more information.
How does L&L ship parts?
We work with both UPS and Federal Express. Generally speaking Federal Express is a better deal for
shipments west of the Mississippi. We can ship next day or second day if you request it. Saturday delivery is
available in most places. We can ship by DHL for overseas parts shipments.
Click here for more information.
TECHNICAL QUESTIONS [Go to top]
Are automatic controls reliable?
In years past electronic controls for kilns had some severe reliability problems. Today, we see very little of
this. The
DynaTrol has a long history of reliability. Its antecedents have been used on kilns for many years
and many thousands of these antecedents are still in use today. L&L, in most cases, mounts its automatic
control in an instrument box that is separate from the kiln. It is easy to remove and send to our factory for
expert repair (if ever necessary).
Can I convert my older J Series Manual Econo-Kiln to an automatic
kiln?
The new Jupiter automatic kilns use the same basic kiln sections that made the J Series Econo-Kilns so
popular and reliable. You can purchase a new control box that the old sections will plug into. See the
Jupiter
Parts List for pricing on the various panels. Because of the cost of a new panel, it may be worth considering
buying a new kiln but, in any case, the option is a possibility. Be sure to talk directly to the factory if you want to
do this. We are using all 20 amp cords and receptacles now and, on some J Series kilns, you may have to
change either your plugs or have us put in 15 amp receptacles.
Does L&L make a wall mount control that I can plug my kiln into?
We used to but the need was so minimal that we have discontinued doing this. If you want to do this you can
talk to Orton (
ortonceramic.com).
Can I buy a manual kiln now and convert it to an automatic kiln later.
You can but it would not be cost effective. See above comments.
What can I do to promote even kiln firings?
Our DynaTrol automatic control with Dynamic Zone Control is the state of the art way to do this. On manual
kilns we recommend you use out
Truview Pyrometer System. In addition, the way you load the kiln will help
promote good uniform firings. You must keep enough space in the kiln to allow air to circulate. If you are
firing dense loads (such as tiles) you may want to consider one of our powered bottoms. A powered
downdraft vent such as out
Vent-Sure system will also help.
Why don't other manufactures use Ceramic Element Holders?
We invented them, we have a patent on them and they are expensive.
What is so great about Dyna-Glow Element Holders? Why pay the
extra money?
There are two incontestable reasons. One, your kiln will last much longer. We have seen L&L kilns that are
20 and even 30 years old that look and function like new kilns. The firebrick around the element grooves in
our competitors' kilns is easily subject to breakage. All it takes is a kiln shelf hitting the brick near an element
groove and you have a BIG problem. Bang hard on a Dyna-Glow element holder and nothing much happens.
The other reason, which is logically clear, is that the wall on the Dyna-Glow element holder that holds the
element in is only 1/16" thick and is made of hard dense non-insulating ceramic. This transfers the heat of
the element much better than the highly insulating firebrick wall (typically ¼" or more) that you will find on
competitors' kilns. Another great feature is that the expansion and contraction of the element coils does not
kick up brick dust, which can get on your precious ware. Element life is longer because elements stay in their
hard grooves and don't droop out.
Can I use L&L element holders in another type of kiln to fix it or to
make my own kiln?
No. We route a special "T" shaped slot in out firebrick to hold the element holders in place. There is no way
easily to do this in another kiln and the required tooling is all special.
Do I need a vent?
Kilns have been operated for years without the newer ventilation systems. Without a vent typically the kiln is
vented by propping the lid during the first part of the cycle when the ware gives off fumes. However, a
powered downdraft type of vent, like the Vent-Sure that L&L makes, automates this process and improves air
circulation and heat distribution in the kiln as well as insures good venting of the fumes to the outside. You
MUST be sure to vent fumes generated by a kiln to the outside. Some of these, such as carbon monoxide,
are hazardous.
See Pre-Order information.
Get more information on our Vent-Sure System.
Get instructions of our Vent-Sure System.
What about running the kiln at night?
This can be a good idea. Often you can get cheaper electrical rates. Often there is not a voltage drop at night
in areas where power conditions are not great. If you do this be careful of conditions near the kiln. You may
want to have a good fire alarm or automatic sprinkler system. You will probably need the automatic DynaTrol
option to do this because of the easy-to-use Time Delay feature. Also be sure to be around the kiln when it is
at the end of its firing to protect against overfiring.
Should I get a powered bottom?
Powered bottoms are available as options on some Jupiter and DaVinci kilns. They are not available on the Easy-Fire kilns.
We recommend this option for a few different reasons.
1) If you are firing very dense loads such as tiles.

2) On very large kilns such as the T3400 Series, where you could get a cold spot in the floor, a powered
bottom will improve uniformity.

3) To decrease cycle time and add KW to the kiln - not normally an issue with ceramics but it can be for
some industrial processes.

4) To increase the temperature rating of a J23 or J2918 kiln.

5) Another benefit of a powered bottom is that it increases the element life by allowing all the elements to
work less hard to achieve the same results.
Does it make sense to buy a J18, J23 or J2918 and then add a
section to it later?
The J18, J23 and J2918 control panels all come with three-zone capability. Therefore you can easily add a
section later to make the kiln into either a J18X, J230 or J2927. The cost is just slightly higher plus, of course,
the cost of shipping. For larger kilns like the J230 or J2927, if you anticipate making the kiln larger, you
should special order a larger control panel (four or five zones). Contact the factory for more information.
See
information on Sectional Kilns.
Can I buy kiln furniture separately rather than in the kits mentioned
for each model?
You can buy shelves and posts separately in any combination. There is a slight discount for buying it in the
kit form but not enough to deter you from buying exactly what you need for the way you load your kiln.
Click
here for more information.
Where should I put my kiln?
Your kiln should be in a covered enclosed space. A basement or garage is usually a good location.
Preferably the floor should be concrete. There must be at least 12" from the walls of the kiln to any walls of
the room. Keep all flammables away from the kiln. Room should be vented with either good natural
ventilation or forced ventilation fan. See our great
pre-order checklist and description of various important
considerations you need to make before you buy a kiln.
Where can I get good information on how to fire my kiln?
We include many firing tip brochures from Orton. For a more in depth explanation Orton has a great booklet
called Successful Firing Practices. They also have a number of other booklets available such as Cones and
Firing (20 pages), Using Orton Cones/Temperature Charts, Kiln Safety Booklet, Kiln-Sitter Maintenance &
Repair and Porcelain Firing Guide. Contact Orton at 614-895-2663 for more information. In addition L&L
sells several
books about firing electric kilns. hotkilns.com/books.pdf for more details. Also see our
Troubleshooting Guide which has a whole section on typical ceramic firing problems. See our information on
how to fire a manual kiln.
ELECTRICAL QUESTIONS [Go to top]
Do I need a separate electrical line for my kiln?
We recommend that you install your kiln on a separate line coming out of your main electrical box. It should
have its own circuit breaker or fused disconnect switch. See our great
pre-order checklist and description of
various important considerations you need to make before you buy a kiln.
How do I know if I have 240 or 208 volts and single or three phase?
Most household electrical current is 240 volts, single phase. Industrial or commercial can be anything. If you
aren't sure ask your electrical utility company or an electrician. It is important to know because it can be
expensive to convert a kiln form one voltage to another. See complete
technical information on voltage for
more information.
Is three phase cheaper to run than single phase.
Not normally. You still use the same amount of KW hours regardless of the phase of the power. In some
areas there may be cheaper rates for three phase power so you might check on this if three phase is
available to you. The main reason that three phase is used is that the size of the wires and circuit breaker or
fused disconnect is dramatically smaller than with single phase for the same amount of KW This is
particularly important for larger kilns. On our Easy-Fire kilns we take advantage of the fact that we can get
more power from 3 phase and still keep under the 48 amp limit for the power cord.
What do I do if I ordered the wrong voltage or phase?
Depending on the kiln it may be possible to switch the phase easily at our factory by sending in the control
panel. This is possible for almost all Jupiter and DaVinci kilns. We can also instruct your electrician in how to
do this. If you ordered a 240 volt kiln and you have 208 volts you will get about 25% less power out of the kiln.
If you can live with this then you may not have to do anything. If you need the full power you will need to
change all the elements to 208 volt elements. If you ordered a 208 volt kiln and you have 240 volts you must
change the elements because the kiln will draw too much power and you will burn out the electricals inside
the control box to say nothing of what you could do to your own power lines.
While we do not accept responsibility for such mistakes we do our best to minimize the expense. Call the
factory if this happens and we will sell you a set of appropriate elements at a deep discount.
Where can I get more information about electricity and voltage?
See our great information on electricity and voltage.
Do you make 480 volt kilns?
Yes. Most DaVinci kilns (except the X1818 and X1827), the Easy-Load kilns, and the J2900 Series. Click here
for more information.
PARTS, SERVICE AND INSTRUCTIONS FOR L&L KILNS [Go to top]
I just bought an old L&L kiln and its in great shape. How do I get
instructions?
You can download almost all our instructions (including those for older models) from our PDF Library. Or
send a check to L&L Kiln Mfg for $25 along with the model and serial number of the kiln. We will send you a
complete instruction manual, wiring diagram, troubleshooting guide, parts list, etc.
How old is my kiln?
Look at the Serial Number. Usually the last two digits are the year in which it was made. For instance a kiln
with the Serial Number 0992A would have been made in 1992.
Where can I get parts?
Parts are available direct from the factory. We typically ship the day after we get an order. We can ship next
day air if you are in a rush. We accept Visa , Mastercard and American Express. Many distributors also carry
common parts.
Are parts available for all L&L kilns?
Just about. Certainly all Easy-Fire, Jupiter, J Series, K Series, DaVinci X & T Series, OV Oval Series, SQ
Series, H & C Series. Some brick may not be available. Elements are almost never a problem. Some
unusual old electrical parts are not available. We made a few odd kilns in the 40's and 50's that we may not
be able to help you with.
Why should I use L&L elements?
Replacement elements made by L&L Kiln Mfg., Inc. are designed for each individual model for long life and
superior performance. Good element design is a complex balance of watt density, design voltage, stretch
ratio, wire gauge, element length and material. It takes hours and years of experience to design a good
element for each model. Do not expect an outside supplier with no interest in your kiln performance or long
experience with L&L kilns to spend the necessary time to do this right. In the end you will not save money.
What can I do to improve element life?
See our Element PDF file. Consider heavy duty elements. They are standard on Easy-Fire and DaVinci kilns
and an option on Jupiter kilns (and some older J Series Econo-kilns). These elements are heavier gauge
wire and lower watt density than the standard elements. They require a larger element holder (which is used
on all J Series kilns manufactured after Jan 1, 1996).
My kiln is taking longer and longer to heat up. What is the problem?
Chances are the elements have aged. See our Troubleshooting Guide.
My thermocouples keep burning out. What can I do to improve
thermocouple life?
If you are using 14 gauge thermocouples at least upgrade to 8 gauge (these use thicker wire). Better yet get
the
Industrial Mullite Thermocouple Protection Tube. Platinum thermocouples (which are very expensive) can
work with the DynaTrol but the DynaTrol has to be specially rebuilt. See hotkilns.com/stc.pdf. Type S
thermocouples will not work with the Truview Pyrometer System.
Is there a temporary fix for a broken thermocouple?
If you have one of the exposed Type K thermocouples you can break away some of the ceramic at the end
and twist the two wires together. Or you can use an acetylene torch to reweld the tip (using Borax to dip the
hot tip into afterwards to prevent undue oxidation). This may get you by for a little while. There is no way to
repair one of the
industrial metal sheathed thermocouples.
Where can I get service?
We keep a binder with the names of local kiln service people that we find out about. Call us for a name and
we'll see if we can help you
. Most of our distributors provide repair service. Check the local yellow pages. L&L
kilns are designed for easy service. Most qualified electricians should be able to help with service. L&L kilns
are perhaps the simplest kiln on the market in terms of repairability so most people are either able to do
their own repair work or find a competent non-specialist to help.
Expert Instrument Panel Repair
If you have a problem that you are unable to fix yourself with a Econo-Kiln, Jupiter or DaVinci instrument panel
you can send it to L&L for inspection and/or repair. Remove it from the panel (you may want to leave the
Dawson kiln sitter attached) and carefully pack it and send by UPS. L&L will inspect it and advise you of
repair charges before proceeding. There is a non-refundable $25 inspection/handling fee for this service.
Repair charges are extra but there is no extra handling or packing charge to send it back, only the cost of
UPS charges. Sorry, we can not estimate repair costs over the phone. The worse case is, of course, that you
would need to buy a new instrument panel. If this is advised L&L will apply the $25 inspection fee against the
cost of a new panel. We charge $55 per hour for our shop time. (How much does your service person charge
per hour? Do they charge for travel? Do they know everything about your control?). PLEASE CALL OUR
SERVICE DEPARTMENT BEFORE SENDING YOUR PANEL.
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