Sentry Sentry Xpress Sentry Xpress 4.0 Instruction manual

Cone Fire/Ramp-Hold Version
Sentry Xpress
Digital Temperature Controller
°F
°C
Program
Hr./Min.
When Lit
Temperature Display
Temperature display is in °C.
See page 13 for instructions
on selecting °F and °C.
Run
°F When Off
°C When Lit
START/
STOP
Enter
Program
HIGHER
Skip Seg.
Add Hold
Change Temp.
T/C Offset
Alarm
LOWER
SENTRY Xpress4.0
MICRO
PROCESSOR
: Separates hours from minutes. Example: Display shown above
is 1 hour and 30 minutes.
Light
blinks during firing.
TM
The Sentry Xpress 4.0 micro processor is manufactured by the
Orton Ceramic Foundation and displays the CE mark.
Down Arrow Key
IM-222/5-11
Starts and stops a firing.
Press after each
programming step. It works like the
Enter key on a computer.
Up Arrow Key
From
press
. Press
to select Cone-Fire or
Ramp-Hold. Pages 6, 8
During a
Ramp-Hold firing, press the
.
will appear. Press
. The current segment
ramp or hold number will appear. To skip, press
again. Page 10
During a
Ramp-Hold firing, press
repeatedly until
appears. Press
. Each time
you press the
, the
hold time for the current segment will increase by 5 minutes.
Then press
.
Page 10
Light is
on during program review.
Delay
Review
START/STOP Key
Time Display
Light is
on during programming.
Review
°C Display Dot
Temperature display is in °F.
Indicator
Lights
From
During a Ramp-Hold firing,
repeatedly until
appears. Press
.
Use the arrow keys to change
the target temperature for the
current segment. Then press
. Page 10
During a firing, press
repeatedly
until
appears. Press
. Use the arrow keys to
change the alarm temperature.
Press
. To silence the
alarm, press any key. Page 10
press
press
. The program
you have selected will appear one step at a time.
When
appears,
press
. Page 4
From
press
.
Enter delay time. Press
. Page 4
During firing, press
. The program you
entered will appear one
step at a time. Page 4
At the
display,
press
.
will appear. Use arrow keys to adjust
the controller to fire hotter or
cooler. Press
to return to
. Page 13
*These features are new with the Sentry Xpress 4.0. This manual,
nevertheless, is backward compatible with earlier controllers.
1
Introduction
Thank you for buying the Sentry Xpress micro processor. We appreciate your business.
When you first connect the power, the controller will display these messages, one after the other:
or a software code (such as 3F-1)
If your controller shows
instead of a software code
before
appears, then the controller includes only
Skip Segment from the “Advanced Features” on page 10. If
your controller shows a software code such as 3F-1 before
appears, then the controller has all the features in
this manual.
The code that appears when you first turn on the power
to the controller is the software version installed in the
memory chip. The code is not an error message and is not in
the manual, because every time the software is updated,
that code number changes.
Do not worry if you hear a clicking noise during operation. Mechanical relays click as they turn the heating elements on and off.
We are constantly trying to find better ways to make
kilns, and your kiln is extremely reliable. Nevertheless, it
contains mechanical parts that eventually wear out. In
some cases, a parts failure can lead to a kiln overfire. Therefore it is important that you occasionally check on the kiln
during operation. Although the kiln does not require constant attention, it should never be left unattended. Please
check the kiln especially during the later stages of firing.
Please read the manual. Damage caused by failure to follow instructions is not covered by warranty.
Write notes on the controller features that you use. Then
if you are away from your kiln for a period, you can review
your notes to refresh your memory. When you need to use
additional controller features, such as the temperature
alarm, refer back to the instruction manual. The cover
shows all the controller features at a glance.
Use Program Review (see page 4) every time you fire the
kiln. This is your assurance that you are firing the correct
program. If necessary, check the program in the display
against a written copy.
We trust that you will enjoy your kiln. Once you learn the
basic features of the Sentry Xpress, you will be able to control every stage of firing. This offers learning opportunities
and convenience difficult to imagine with a manual-controlled kiln.
©2004, by Paragon Industries, L.P. IM-222/5-11
2 Cone-Fire / Ramp-Hold
Contents
General Guidelines . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3
Time and Temperature Displays . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3
Operation Begins from the IdLE Display . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3
Thermocouple Inspection. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3
Scrolling Numbers Rapidly. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4
Program Review & Repeat Firing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4
Delay . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4
Power Failures . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4
CPLT Message: Firing Completed . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4
Adverse Weather. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4
Canceling a New Program . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4
Two Firing Modes: Cone-Fire and Ramp-Hold . . . . . . . . . 5
Cone-Fire . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5
Pyrometric Witness Cones . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5
How to Interpret the Bending of a Pyrometric Cone . . . . . 5
How to Correct for Under- or Over-Fired Cones . . . . . . . . 5
Cone-Fire Programming Instructions . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6
Cone-Fire Hold . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6
When the Kiln Shuts Off Too Soon . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7
How to Customize Cone-Fire . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7
Ramp-Hold Mode. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7
Storing Programs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8
Rate . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8
Ramp-Hold Programming Instructions. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8
Hold. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9
Temperature Over-Shoot . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9
Programming a Cooling Segment . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9
Advanced Features . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10
Skip Segment . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10
Add Hold Time . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10
Editing the Target Temperature . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10
The Alarm . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10
Lost Wax Burnout . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11
Error Messages . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12
/ Bad Programming . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12
/ Electronics Too Hot. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12
/ Thermocouple Failure . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12
Error Messages . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12
/ Fired Too Long. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12
/ High Temperature Deviation. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12
/ Power Failure . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12
/ Power Failure . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12
/ Power Failure . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12
/ Thermocouple Failure . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12
/ Thermocouple Lag . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13
/ Thermocouple Reversed . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13
Thermocouple Offset . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13
Selecting °F or °C Display . . . . . . . . . . . 13
Cone-Fire Schedules. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14
Orton Pyrometric Cone Chart. . . . . . . . 16
Display Messages . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17
Trouble Shooter. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17
Controller display is blank. No heat in kiln. . . . . . . . . . . . 17
Controller display turns on. No heat in kiln. . . . . . . . . . . . 18
Kiln switch box ½ amp fuses keep blowing. . . . . . . . . . . 18
The kiln overfires. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 19
Index. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 19
Safety
The warranty on your Sentry Xpress
controller does not cover damage from
overfiring, regardless of the circumstances. It is the operator’s responsibility
to make sure the kiln turns off at the proper
time.
When the kiln is not in use, disconnect the
power.
Do not leave the kiln unattended, especially
near the expected shut-off time.
Wear green #3 firing safety glasses when looking into the firing chamber of a hot kiln.
Do not touch hot sides of kiln. Keep unsupervised children away.
Install your kiln at least 12 inches from any wall
or combustible surface.
Do not open lid or door until kiln has cooled and
all switches are off.
Fire only in a well-ventilated, covered and protected area away from combustible materials.
Keep cordset away from hot sides of kiln or furnace.
DANGEROUS VOLTAGE! Do not touch heating elements with anything. Disconnect before
servicing.
When vacuuming the kiln, keep the nozzle away
from the controller and the thermocouple. Vacuum cleaners create a static charge that can
damage the controller.
Would unplugging the kiln erase the
digital programs? Should the kiln be unplugged
when not in use?
You can unplug the kiln. The digital programs will stay in memory even without power. For
safety, you should unplug the kiln or disconnect the
power when the kiln is not in use.
General
Guidelines
Time and Temperature
Displays
Center Dot: Time
A center dot appears during time display. It separates
hours from minutes (Example: 1 hour, 30 minutes displays as 01.30.) During temperature display, the dot
disappears.
The center display dot indicates
time instead of temperature.
Right-Hand Dot: °C
When temperature
is displayed in °C, a dot
appears in the lower
right. In °F display, it
disappears. You can
choose between Fahrenheit and Celsius display. See page 13.
°F
°C
Operation Begins from
the IdLE Display
must appear before you can fire the kiln.
I
If
,
, or other message appears instead of
when the kiln is first turned on, press the
key (the key with the circular arrow).
will appear.
I
If you press
pear. To get back to
I
If the display shows an error message such as
stead of
, see page 12.
I
(firing completed) appears at the end of a firing.
To make
appear, press
.
during a firing,
, press
will apagain.
in-
Thermocouple Inspection
The small rod protruding into the firing chamber is the
temperature sensor, or thermocouple.
CAUTION: Bumping the thermocouple can push it
out of the firing chamber. This could cause an overfire!
Bumping the thermocouple could also cause inaccurate readings.
I
A 1/8” diameter thermocouple should extend into the
firing chamber ½” - 5 8”.
I
A ¼” diameter thermocouple should extend into the firing chamber 1” or more.
I
Keep shelves, posts and ware 1” - 1 ½” away from the
thermocouple.
3
Scrolling Numbers Rapidly
During programming, hold an arrow key down several
seconds, and numbers will begin to scroll rapidly. Ordinarily, you would press
to raise a number and
to lower it. But sometimes it is faster to press
the opposite key. This is because the numbers scroll below
0000 to the highest number, and vice versa. Examples:
I
To program a 99.59 hour Hold when the display shows
00.00, press the
once.
I
To program a FULL rate when the display shows 0000,
press the
once.
I
To program a temperature of 200°F when the display
shows 1800°F, press the
. That is faster than
pressing the
.
Program Review &
Repeat Firing
Program Review lets you check that the information
programmed into the controller is correct. Program Review
shows the values for the program in active memory. Use
Program Review from
to repeat the last program you
fired.
I
I
Press the
key. The rate, temperature, hold, etc. will
display one after the other. Firing will continue.
Press the
key. After rate, temperature, hold, etc.,
will appear. Press
.
will appear, and the kiln will begin firing the program
just reviewed.
Delay
Delay is a count-down timer. The kiln begins firing when
the timer runs out of time. Use delay to fit a firing into your
schedule.
CAUTION: For safety, do not leave the kiln alone during a delay or a firing. We cannot guarantee your kiln
against overfiring even though the controller is automatic.
After you have selected a program and the controller is ready to begin firing,
will appear.
Press the
pear, alternating with
key once.
.
will ap-
Use the arrow keys to enter delay time. (The decimal separates hours and minutes. Example: 1 hour
and 10 minutes = 01.10) Then press
twice.
will appear, alternating with time left until
the firing begins.
Note: Press
during delay to end the delay and
begin the firing. The maximum delay is 99 hours and
59 minutes.
4 Cone-Fire / Ramp-Hold
Power Failures
After a power failure, the controller will continue firing
provided that:
I
The kiln temperature is above 212°F / 100°C when the
power comes back on.
I
The temperature dropped no more than 180°F / 100°C
while the power was off.
Power Failure Messages
The power failed during a cooling segment, and
the kiln cooled past the target temperature while the power
was off.
The power failed during firing and kiln temperature was below 212°F / 100°C when the power came back
on.
The power failed during firing and temperature
dropped more than 72°F / 40°C by the time the power came
back on.
CPLT Message: Firing
Completed
When the firing has successfully completed, the Sentry
Xpress will shut off power to the elements and sound an
alarm for 30 seconds. Then three messages will cycle one after the other:
(complete)
Firing time in hours and
minutes
The current kiln temperature
Adverse Weather
It is okay to store the controller at sub-zero temperatures. But before operating, raise the room temperature to
at least 32°F / 0°C. Place a space heater within a couple of
feet of the control panel and let the heater run for an hour
or so. Or hang a shop light near the kiln to raise the temperature.
Thunder Storms and Power Surges
Unplug the kiln or disconnect the power when the kiln is
not in use, especially during thunder storms and in areas
with frequent power surges. If the kiln is part way through a
firing when a storm begins, it is probably okay to continue
the firing with close supervision. Do not leave the kiln unattended.
Canceling a New Program
If you do not touch the keys for one minute during programming, the controller will go back to the
display.
The controller will also discard the program you were entering and will retain the previous program in memory.
This is useful if you change your mind during programming and decide to keep the previous program. Instead of
completing the new program, wait a minute and let the controller return to
.
Two Firing Modes:
Cone-Fire and Ramp-Hold
To give you greater flexibility, your controller has two
firing modes: Cone-Fire and Ramp-Hold.
Cone-Fire Mode (see below)
Cone-Fire mode fires the ware to a pyrometric cone
number using the Orton cone tables on page 17. This mode
is for ceramics, pottery, stoneware, and glazes. Your supplier can tell you which cone number to program.
Ramp-Hold Mode (see page 7)
Use Ramp-Hold mode to create custom firings. Select
your own firing speed, temperature, and temperature hold
time in up to 8 steps, or segments.
The chart shows the recommended firing mode for several types of ware:
Type of Firing
China Painting
Ceramic Decals
Ceramic Glaze
Ceramic Greenware
Glass Bead Annealing
Glass Fusing
Glass Slumping
Lost Wax
Suggested Firing Mode
Cone-Fire
Cone-Fire
Cone-Fire
Cone-Fire
Ramp-Hold
Ramp-Hold
Ramp-Hold
Ramp-Hold
Cone-Fire
Cone-Fire mode fires the ware to a pyrometric
cone. Cone-Fire is not designed for heat treating, glass fusing and enameling. For these firings, use Ramp-Hold mode (page 7). You can
also use Ramp-Hold to fire ceramic pieces
that require a custom firing schedule.
We suggest using the witness cone to trouble shoot problems with the ware. If china paints appear faded and you
suspect it is due to over-firing, test fire with a witness cone.
Another example: glaze crazing due to under-fired bisque.
How to Interpret the Bending
of a Pyrometric Cone
The cones illustrated here are called self-supporting
cones. They are the easiest type of witness cone to use.
1. Correct Bend
When the self-supporting cone
bends so that the tip is approximately even with the top of the
base, the cone has been exposed to
the correct amount of heat work
for that cone number. This is called
a 6 o’clock bend.
2. Under-Fired Cone
The cone in this photo has not
bent far enough. It indicates that
the kiln did not fire long enough or
hot enough.
An under-fired cone.
3. Over-Fired Cone
When a cone collapses or puddles, it indicates that the kiln
over-fired the ware rated to that
cone number.
An over-fired cone.
Pyrometric Witness Cones
It is important to understand pyrometric witness cones,
because clay and glazes are rated to cone numbers. Pyrometric cones are small pyramids of clay that bend when exposed to the correct amount of heat work. Cones are rated
by number. See page 17 for a list of cone numbers and their
temperatures.
When a witness cone bends during firing, the clay and
glaze in that firing, rated to that cone number, have received the correct amount of heat.
Place the pyrometric witness cone on the kiln shelf near
the ware you are firing. Use the cone to check for firing accuracy. The cone is the most accurate measurement of heat
work in a ceramic firing. This is because the cone measures
the combined effects of time, kiln atmosphere, and temperature.
A cone fired to maturity.
Note: Do not be overly concerned with achieving an exact 6 o’clock bend. The difference between a 3 o’clock
and a 6 o’clock bend is only a few degrees of
temperature.
How to Correct for Under- or
Over-Fired Cones
Before changing a firing because of an under- or
over-fired cone, make sure the correct cone was in the kiln.
For instance, if you fired to cone 05, make sure the cone in
the kiln was not a cone 5 instead. (See the cone temperature
chart on page 17.)
Compensating for an Under-Fired Cone
Fire to the same cone number next time, but add hold
time. How much hold time to add is a matter of experimentation. A general guideline would be 10-30 minutes.
I
5
I
If the kiln still does not fire hot enough, then fire to the
next hotter cone number, without hold time.
I
Adjust the Thermocouple Offset. See page 13.
I
Customize the firing in Ramp-Hold. See the next page.
I
If firing to the next cooler cone number results in under-firing, add hold time.
I
Adjust the Thermocouple Offset. See page 13.
I
Customize the firing in Ramp-Hold. See the next page.
Compensating for an Over-Fired Cone
I Fire to the next cooler cone number.
Cone-Fire Hold
Cone-Fire Programming
Instructions
From
Cone-Fire Hold heat-soaks the ware at the cone temperature at the end of the firing. Without Hold, the kiln shuts
off after it reaches the cone temperature. Hold maintains
the cone temperature for the period you specify.
To even out the temperature throughout the kiln.
I
To allow heat to penetrate more completely into the
clay. (Rapid firing is like cooking: the turkey will be
done on the outside but not on the inside.)
I
To help glaze absorb china paint.
I
To heal glaze defects such as bubbles.
(slow)
(medium) or
will
appear. Use the arrow keys to change speed.
Then press
.
and the hold time from the last firing will
appear. (Example: 1 hour and 10 minutes =
01.10) Use the arrow keys to change the hold
time. Then press
.
will appear. Press
.
will appear, the Run indicator light will begin blinking, and the kiln will begin firing.
To stop a firing before completion, press
.
will appear, alternating with kiln
temperature.
Note: Do not be concerned if your kiln makes a
clicking sound during firing. Kilns use relays to
power the elements. The relays click each time
their electrical contacts come together.
Example: to fire to cone 05, program Cone-Fire for 06
and add 45-60 minutes of hold time.
If your kiln has a peephole, watch the pyrometric witness
cones during firing. Press
when the correct witness
cone bends. Note how much Hold time was needed. Program that much Hold time the next time you fire the same
type of ware.
Note: During Hold, the display temperature will alternate with time left in Hold. To figure hold time for the
next firing, subtract time left in Hold from the total hold
time entered.
When Hold is set to 99.99 hours, the Sentry Xpress will
remain at that temperature indefinitely, until
is
pressed.
6 Cone-Fire / Ramp-Hold
),
and se-
The last pyrometric cone you fired, and its temperature, will appear. Use the arrow keys to
change the cone number. Then press
.
CAUTION: Use hold sparingly. A little hold time can
yield dramatic results. But too much can overfire your
ware and burn out colors.
One way to add hold time without over-firing is to fire to
one cone cooler than needed. Then add enough hold time
to bend the next hotter cone. Hold time needed to bend the
next cone will vary. As a rule of thumb, 45 - 60 minutes of
hold = one cone of heat work.
(the left button).
Using the
key (not the
skip past
lect
. Then press
.
Hold is not needed in every firing. Experience will help
you decide when to use Hold. Some of the reasons you
might consider using it:
I
, press
Note: The kiln’s actual firing rate may be less than
the rate you programmed, depending on the kiln
model, available voltage, and density of the load
you are firing.
When the kiln fires to completion, it will beep for 30
seconds. The display will show the following:
I
Firing time
I
Present temperature
I
= fired to completion
To return to
, press
.
To fire the same program again, see “Program Review & Repeat Firing,” page 4.
When the Kiln Shuts Off
Too Soon
If the kiln shuts off before the pyrometric witness cone
bends, you can turn the hot kiln back on and keep firing.
Press
From
Cone-Fire.
twice.
, program the next hotter cone in
will appear. To begin firing, press
.
will appear and the Run indicator light will
begin blinking. The hot kiln will begin firing, taking
up where it left off.
How to Customize Cone-Fire
Ramp-Hold
Mode
Theory of Operation
The temperature you are firing to is called the target
temperature. After the controller reaches the target temperature, it can also hold that temperature.
The controller fires at a controlled heating rate. The rate
is figured in degrees per hour. If you selected a rate of 100°
per hour, it would take 10 hours for the kiln to reach 1000°.
Rate is similar to “miles per hour.”
You can customize a Cone-Fire program using
Ramp-Hold. (See the next section.) On pages 15 and 16, tables show the segments used to program each cone number
in Cone-Fire. For instance, a cone 016 firing at medium
speed (
)uses these two segments:
Segment
Rate
°F/°C
Temp.
°F/°C
Hold
1
396 / 220
1314 / 712
00.00
2
108 / 60
1422 / 772
00.00
Suppose your 016 witness cone, at a medium speed firing, only barely started to bend. To fire 25° hotter, raise the
target temperature of segment 2 by 25°:
1422 + 25 = 1447
This is the program you would enter in Ramp-Hold:
Segment
Rate
°F/°C
Temp.
°F/°C
Hold
1
396 / 220
1314 / 712
00.00
2
108 / 60
1447 / 786
00.00
You could also easily add a slow cooling segment:
Segment
Rate
°F/°C
Temp.
°F/°C
Hold
1
396 / 220
1314 / 712
00.00
2
108 / 60
1447 / 786
00.00
3
100 / 55
1000 / 537
00.00
My digital kiln is taking too long to fire:
9 ½ hours to cone 6. I want the kiln to fire in 4 hours.
9 ½ hours is the firing time programmed
into the Sentry Xpress Cone-Fire mode at fast
speed. The easiest way to go faster is to use
Ramp-Hold mode, where you can program the exact speed that you want. Note, however, that the firing speed is limited to the kiln’s heating capacity.
In summary, the controller does three basic tasks:
1) It fires at a controlled heating rate, or speed, measured in degrees of temperature change per hour.
2) It fires to a target temperature.
3) It can hold the target temperature.
The controller fires in segments, or stages. A segment is
a given heating rate to a target temperature. Shown in the
chart above is a segment with a target temperature of 1250°
and a rate of 625°, with a hold of one hour.
Heating rate is figured in degrees per hour. The recommended heating rate for the material you are firing is usually available from your supplier. It also varies depending
on the thickness of the material.
To figure how long a firing segment will take, subtract
the current temperature from the target temperature and
divide the resultant temperature by the heating rate. In the
diagram above, the firing time is 1250° - 80° (room temperature) = 1170 ÷625 = 1.87 hours.
The controller can fire up to 8 segments per firing. One
segment is often all that is needed, though.
After the controller has finished firing the last segment,
it will turn off power to the elements.
Note: If you enter a rate of 0000 in segment 1, or if the
target temperature in segment 1 is lower than the current temperature,
will appear in the display.
7
Storing Programs
The controller can retain four Ramp-Hold programs in
memory even when power is turned off. Programs are numbered 1 - 4.
Ramp-Hold Programming
Instructions
Note: You have up to 8 segments available in
Ramp-Hold. If you don’t need all 8, zero out the
unused segments. See step 6 below.
The first message to appear after you plug in your Sentry
Xpress is a software code and then
. Press
.
Then use the
key to scroll through these messages:
.
From
(the left button).
Press the
key (not the
).
and
are
Ramp-Hold programs. When the one you
want appears, press
. (Ignore
.)
To use Ramp-Hold mode for the first time, select
. You do that by pressing the
key after
appears. Then follow the boxed instructions in the next
column to enter temperature, heating rate, etc.
will appear. Enter firing rate (temperature change per hour) for segment 1. (1° =
slowest rate. 1799°F / 999°C = full power.)
Then press
.
is Program 1. When you fire the kiln again, you
can repeat Program 1 by selecting
. When you are
ready to fire a different program, select
, which is
Program 2. Then enter temperatures, heating rates, etc. Select Program 3 and 4 the same way.
or
and the target temperature from
the last firing will appear. Use the arrow keys
to change the temperature. Then press
.
To over-write a program, select it and enter new rates
and temperatures. This automatically over-writes the previous program. Write down your programs in a notebook and
record firing results for all firings.
and the hold time from the last firing
will appear (Example: 1 hour 10 minutes =
01.10). Use the arrow keys to change the hold
time. Then press
. (No hold = 00.00)
Rate
Continue entering values for the segments
needed. When
appears for the next segment that you don’t need, select
. Then
press
. This will zero out the remaining
segments. (Example: You need only 1 segment. When
appears, enter
.)
Each segment must include a rate, which is degrees of
temperature change per hour.
The kiln will fire at full power when the rate is 1799°F /
999°C. Full power displays as
.
Note: To select full power from
key once.
, press
, press the
will appear. Press
to begin firing.
will appear and the Run indicator light
will begin blinking. The kiln is now firing.
To stop a firing before completion, press
.
will appear, alternating with total
firing time and kiln temperature.
Note: Do not be concerned if your kiln makes a
clicking sound during firing. Kilns use relays to
power the elements. The relays click each time
their electrical contacts come together.
Note: The kiln’s actual firing rate may be less than
the rate you programmed, depending on the kiln
model, available voltage, and density of the load
you are firing.
I programmed a FULL rate, yet my kiln
heated at only 550°F per hour.
The controller is limited by the heating
capacity of each kiln. Your kiln heated at 550° per
hour because that is its maximum heating rate.
When the kiln fires to completion, it will beep for 30
seconds. The display will show the following:
I
Firing time
I
Present temperature
I
= Fired to completion
To return to
, press
.
To fire the same program again, see “Program Review & Repeat Firing,” page 4.
8 Cone-Fire / Ramp-Hold
Hold
Hold is the length of time that you want the kiln to remain at the target temperature. Hold is also called soak or
dwell time. Hold maintains a steady temperature for the
length of time you specify. You can use Hold in both heating-up and cooling-down segments.
When Hold is set to 99.59 hours, the controller will remain at that temperature indefinitely, until you press
. To enter a 99.59 hour Hold, press the
once from 00.00 during programming.
Note: During firing, the display shows Hold temperature and time left in Hold.
Example: Some glass artists flash-cool the glass just after
it fuses. They open the door a few inches to remove heat,
then close it again. This takes the glass down rapidly
through the devitrification range. To program a flash-cool,
use maximum rate. This shuts off the heating elements during that segment, allowing the kiln to cool rapidly.
Note: During fast cooling, do not open the door all the
way. Do not force-cool the kiln with a fan.
A Ramp-Hold
Practice Program
Should a hold time be programmed as
total number of minutes, or hours and minutes?
Program a hold as hours and minutes
rather than the total number of minutes. (i.e., 90
minutes is programmed as 1:30.)
What is the maximum number of times
per minute that the Sentry Xpress controller can
turn on the relay during a hold?
The maximum number of relay cycles is 6
times a minute.
Temperature Over-Shoot
When a kiln is heated too fast, it may over-shoot the target temperature, especially in small kilns at lower temperatures. To avoid this, add an extra segment in a Ramp-Hold
program to slow the firing. The segment with the slower
rate should begin approximately 40° - 60° below the target
temperature.
Programming a
Cooling Segment
For controlled cooling, program a segment to a lower
target temperature than that of the preceding segment.
Example: You fire at a rate of 500°F per hour to 1450°F
with your first segment. You want the kiln to cool at a rate
of 100°F per hour down to 700°F. Here is how you would
program the two segments:
Segment
Rate
°F/°C
Temp.
°F/°C
Hold
1
500 / 277
1450 / 788
00.00
2
100 / 55
700 / 371
00.00
The first segment is the heating segment. The second
one is the cooling segment. The controller does not use minus numbers for cooling. Just enter a lower target temperature than that of the previous segment.
If you prop the lid or door for a fast cooling, program a
fast cooling rate for that segment. If you lower the temperature quickly by propping the lid but program a slow cooling
rate, the controller will just raise the temperature again.
Make a simple chart like the one above when planning a firing program.
To practice using the controller, we will enter a program
that includes three segments. The last segment is a cooling
segment.
Using the programming instructions on page 8, enter
this firing schedule. Then use Program Review (page 4) to
check for accuracy.
PrO1
rA1 = 250
°F 1 = 750
HLd 1 = 00.00
rA2 = 900
°F 2 = 1425
HLd 2 = 00.30
rA3 = 150
°F 3 = 750
HLd 3 = 00.00
rA4 = 0000 (zeroes cancel segments 4-8)
If you stop/abort a firing to change a
temperature and then resume firing, do you need to
skip segments to get back to where you were before?
When you press Stop during a firing, reprogram the controller, and then press Start, the
controller will go to the first segment that matches
the temperature inside the kiln. For instance, if segment 3 starts at 1200 and ends at 1700, and the kiln
temperature is 1600 when you press Start, the controller will go directly to segment 3.
9
Advanced
Features
Editing the Target
Temperature
Skip Segment and Temperature Edit work only in
Ramp-Hold firings. Add Hold Time and Alarm work in
both Cone-Fire and Ramp-Hold firings.
Skip Segment
Skip Segment jumps the firing from the current segment
to the next one.
During a Ramp-Hold firing, press the
.
will appear.
Press
. The current segment ramp or hold
number will appear.
Press
again. (If you change your mind and
don’t want to skip that segment, don’t press
after
appears. The firing will continue in the
same segment and the temperature will appear after one minute.)
Skip Segment skips to the ramp of the next segment from
either a ramp or hold of the current segment. (Skip Segment does nothing during the final segment. To end the final segment, press
.)
Skip Segment Example
You have programmed a target temperature of 1425°F for glass fusing,
followed by a segment for controlled cooling. Watching the
glass through the peephole, you notice that the glass edges
have rounded nicely at 1315°. Use Skip Segment to end the
firing segment and to begin the one for slow cooling.
Note: Make a note of the temperature at which the
glass fused. Program that temperature for the next firing of that type of glass.
Add Hold Time
Add Hold Time adds 5 minutes to a hold. It is designed
for ceramists who watch witness cones and for glass artists
who inspect the glass near the end of firing.
During a Cone-Fire or Ramp-Hold firing, press
the
repeatedly until
appears.
Press
. The hold time for the current segment will appear.
Press the
. Each time you press the
, the hold time will increase by 5 minutes.
Press
. The normal temperature will appear.
Note: Add Time will add 5 minutes to a hold even if no
hold had been programmed.
10 Cone-Fire / Ramp-Hold
While the kiln is firing, you can change the target temperature. You can edit only the segment that is firing. So if
the first segment is the current one, you can edit only the
first segment. To edit other segments, wait until the firing
has progressed to those segments.
Even if the current segment has already started its hold
time, you can still edit the segment's target temperature.
The controller will go back out of hold and fire to the new
target temperature at the original rate. (You cannot edit
the rate, however.)
During a Ramp-Hold firing, press the
peatedly until
appears.
re-
Press
. The target temperature for the current segment will appear.
Use the arrow keys to change the target temperature.
Press
pear.
. The normal kiln temperature will ap-
The Alarm
While the kiln is firing, you can set the alarm, which
sounds when the kiln reaches the alarm temperature. Use
the alarm as a reminder to look at the glass during fusing or
slumping, to look at witness cones, to close the lid from
vented position, etc.
You can enter only one alarm temperature at a time.
However, after the alarm beeps, you can set the alarm for
another temperature, as many times as you want, during the
firing. Entering an alarm temperature automatically erases
the previous alarm temperature.
Note: The alarm temperature that you set during a firing must be higher than the current display temperature. The alarm is designed for higher temperatures
and not for cooling temperatures.
During a Cone-Fire or Ramp-Hold firing, press
the
repeatedly until
appears.
Press
appear.
. The current alarm temperature will
Use the arrow keys to change the alarm temperature.
Press
pear.
. The normal kiln temperature will ap-
To silence the alarm when it sounds, press any key.
Note: If you do not want to use the alarm, set the alarm
temperature to 32°F / 0°C. This setting will turn off the
alarm feature.
Lost Wax
Burnout
Segment 3 lowers temperature to 800°F / 426°C, the typical casting temperature for silver. (Most types of gold cast
at 900°F / 482°C.)
CAUTION: Only kilns with vent holes are designed
for lost wax burnout. However, you can use a kiln without the vent hole provided that you open the door ½”
during venting.
CAUTION: Always use a wax tray.
Note: These instructions apply to injection wax that
melts at 200°F, not pattern waxes and plastics that
melt at higher temperatures. If smoke appears during
wax elimination, turn off the kiln. Smoking wax means
the kiln fired hotter than 300° / 148°C.
Overview
Lost wax casting is the process of carving a shape in wax,
making a mold, and then casting that shape in metal. After
the wax has been carved, a mold is made of the wax shape.
The mold is a negative image of the wax. The wax is later
melted out of the mold through hollow channels called
sprues.
Lost wax burnout is the process of preparing a casting
mold for the melted metal that will be poured into it. The
steps in lost wax burnout:
Melt the wax from the mold.
Remove wax from the kiln before raising the temperature higher than 300°F / 148°C.
Harden the mold at high temperature.
Maintain the mold at the casting temperature recommended for the type of metal that will be poured
into the mold.
CAUTION: Prevent wax or carbon from contacting
the kiln’s walls and elements. Carbon build-up inside a
kiln ruins the interior. Carbon conducts electricity and
causes elements to short circuit. Damage to elements
from contact with foreign materials is not covered by
warranty.
A Sample Program
See instructions on page 8 to enter this program:
Segment
Rate
°F/°C
Temp.
°F/°C
Hold
1
500 / 277
300 / 148
01.00
2
500 / 277
1350 / 732
01.00
3
450 / 250
800 / 426
02.00
Note: Casting temperature depends on the size of the
mold. The temperatures above are only a guide. See
your jewelry supply dealer for temperature
recommendations.
Burnout Instructions
Place a metal tray inside the kiln on three ½” posts.
Place the mold on a wire mesh screen on top of the
tray. The mold’s sprue hole should be down. The
tray will catch melting wax as it drips from the sprue
hole.
Keep the kiln’s vent hole(s), if any, open during wax
elimination. If the kiln has no vent hole, leave the
door open ½”. This allows fumes to escape the kiln.
Heat the kiln to 300°F / 148°C and hold it at that
temperature for at least one hour.
Note: Do NOT heat the wax above 300°F / 148°C.
Hold at 300°F / 148°C for at least one hour. During
this hour, the wax will melt from the mold and drip into
the tray. If the kiln gets hotter than 300°F / 148°C, the
wax may smoke and deposit carbon inside your kiln,
causing expensive damage.
After one hour at 300°F / 148°C, open the kiln. Remove the mold and wax tray. Pour the wax from the
tray and leave the tray out of the kiln until your next
wax elimination. (Do not leave the tray in the kiln!)
Heat the mold to the temperature recommended by
your jewelers’ supply house where you purchased
the mold material. This is usually around 1350°F /
732°C.
Lower the temperature to the casting temperature
of the metal. Hold at that temperature until you are
ready to begin casting. Remove the mold with tongs.
Wear protective gloves and safety glasses.
Saving a Carbon-Damaged Kiln
If you follow the above directions, your kiln should be
safe from wax damage. In some cases, a small amount of
carbon may form on the walls over a period of time. This is
due to the burning of wax residue that was left in the mold.
For this reason we recommend that you periodically fire the
kiln to 1500°F / 815°C as follows:
Open the vent cover(s) or leave the door ajar ½”.
Fire the kiln empty to 1500°F / 815°C at a rate of
300°F / 166°C with a one hour hold (01.00).
Segment 1 heats the wax to 300°F / 148°C and holds it for
one hour, allowing it to drip from the mold.
Segment 2 hardens the mold.
11
Error Messages
To return to
from an FE code
Try pressing any key. If that doesn’t work, turn the power
off for 10 seconds. Call the factory if the error message remains when you turn the power back on.
bAdP / Bad Programming
The kiln will not fire because a) the Ramp-Hold program just entered has a rate of 0000 in segment 1, or b) the
target temperature in segment 1 of Ramp-Hold is lower
than the current temperature.
EtH / Electronics Too Hot
The circuit board temperature is above 176°F / 80°C.
Press any key to return to
.
To lower the board temperature, use a fan to blow air
across the kiln switch box into the louvers. (But do not blow
air into the kiln’s peepholes.) If you have more than one
kiln in the room, place them farther apart. Never allow the
firing room temperature to exceed 110°F / 43°C. (Measure
room temperature three feet away from the kiln.)
FaIL / Thermocouple Failure
If you get an
message, check the wire connections
going from the back of the controller to the thermocouple.
A loose connection can cause the
message.
FtL / Fired Too Long
This message appears when both of the following conditions are met:
I
The temperature rise is less than 27°F / 15°C per hour.
I
The firing is 2 hours longer than programmed.
Programming a cooling segment target temperature that
is below or even close to room temperature can also trigger
the
message.
See “Controller display turns on. No heat in kiln,” page
17.
The controller on my Paragon SC-2 jewelry kiln flashes
, but only when I include a controlled cooling. What is happening?
The thermocouple, or temperature sensor, failed during
firing. Causes:
I
Defective thermocouple or disconnected/loose wires
I
Defective controller
I
Electrical noise
Thermocouple Paperclip Test
Check the thermocouple wire
connections. (See your kiln instruction manual.) If connections are tight, perform this test:
HtdE / High Temperature
Deviation
UNPLUG the kiln or disconnect the power. Remove the controller. Remove the two thermocouple wires from the back of
the controller.
(This error message is accompanied by an audible alarm,
which sounds for one minute.) Causes:
Cut a thin paperclip in half. Insert a U-shaped
paperclip piece, or other piece of thin wire, where
you removed the thermocouple wires.
Plug in the kiln.
Test results:
will appear. Press
FE Error Messages
FE 1
Memory Read/Write Failure
FE 2
RAM Failure
FE 3
OEM Factory Data Corruption
FE 4
Thermocouple “Noise”
FE 5
Software Error
12 Cone-Fire / Ramp-Hold
I
During a heating-up ramp or a hold, the temperature is
100°F / 56°C above the programmed temperature.
I
During a cooling-down segment, the temperature is
100°F / 56°C higher than the segment’s starting temperature.
I
A fast rate caused the controller to overshoot the target
temperature.
I
Check for a stuck relay.
.
A) If the controller displays room temperature and
after you press
, replace the thermocouple.
B) If the display still shows
after you press
return the controller for repair or replacement.
means “firing too long.” But “firing
too long” applies to cooling as well as to heating.
can appear if you program a segment for slow
cooling and the kiln is taking too long to cool. Program a slower cooling rate.
will also appear if
you program a cooling segment target temperature
that is below or close to room temperature.
,
PF 1 / Power Failure
The power failed during a cooling segment, and the kiln
cooled past the target temperature while the power was off.
The kiln will not resume firing. To return to the
display, press any key.
PF 2 / Power Failure
The power failed during firing and kiln temperature was
below 212°F / 100°C when the power came back on. The
kiln will not resume firing. To return to the
display,
press any key.
PF 3 / Power Failure
The power failed during firing and temperature dropped
more than 72°F / 40°C by the time the power came back on.
The kiln will not resume firing. To return to the
display, press any key.
tC / Thermocouple Failure
The thermocouple failed during the
the "paperclip" test under "FaIL," page 12.
display. See
tCL / Thermocouple Lag
The heating rate is slower than 9°F / 5°C per hour and the
actual kiln temperature is more than 100°F / 56°C away
from the programmed temperature. The tCL alarm becomes inactive above 500°F. To return to the
display,
press any key. Causes:
I
Worn or burned out elements, defective relays, low voltage, and defective thermocouple.
I
On kilns that use a portable controller, the thermocouple has fallen out of the firing chamber.
I
A bare spot on the thermocouple lead wires has touched
a grounded object inside the kiln switch box causing the
thermocouple to short out.
I
You have programmed a cooling segment temperature
that is below room temperature.
tCr / Thermocouple Reversed
I
This usually means the thermocouple lead wires are reversed. Check that the thermocouple lead wires are connected to the correct terminals. See your kiln’s wiring diagram.
I
The thermocouple may be starting to fail and is sending
erratic signals to the controller.
I
The thermocouple inside the kiln is much colder than
the controller circuit board.
Thermocouple
Offset
You can calibrate the controller to fire up to 20°F / 11°C
hotter or cooler than the zero factory setting.
From
, press the
temperature, hold, etc.,
With
key.
key. After rate,
will appear.
shown in the display, press the
will appear. Press the arrow keys to change
the controller temperature.
Press the
key to return to the
To fire the controller, press
pear. Or to return to
, press
times.
.
Selecting °F or
°C Display
The controller can display temperature in either °F or
°C. If your controller shows a small display dot in the lower
right corner of the display, the temperature shown is °C. No
dot means °F. To change temperature display:
UNPLUG kiln or disconnect power.
Remove the four screws that hold the controller to
the kiln. Carefully remove the controller from the
kiln. Leave wires attached to the controller.
The C/F jumper terminal is on the back of the controller, circled above.
Look at the back of the controller. You will find a set
of connector pins near the bottom labeled “C/F.”
When a jumper is placed on the C/F pins, the display
reads °F. When the jumper is removed, display reads
°C. Remove or insert the jumper as desired. (You
can purchase the jumper from a computer supply
store if necessary.)
Install the controller being careful not to jar components on the back of the controller against the kiln
case.
display.
will aptwo more
13
Cone-Fire Schedules - °F
Selecting a Fast speed in Cone-Fire increases the segment rates shown in this chart by 20%. Selecting a Slow speed decreases the segment rates by 20%. (However, the rate shown in this chart for the last segment remains the same whether you
select Fast, Medium, and Slow speeds.)
Note: Your controller accepts only cone numbers that fall within the kiln’s maximum temperature range.
Low Fire Cones °F
Cone
022
021
020
019
018
017
016
015
014
013
012
011
Segment 1
Rate 1 Temp. 1
396
979
396
1004
396
1051
396
1144
396
1211
396
1252
396
1314
396
1348
396
1377
396
1431
396
1474
396
1499
Segment 2
Rate 2 Temp. 2
108
1087
108
1112
108
1159
108
1252
108
1319
108
1360
108
1422
108
1456
108
1485
108
1539
108
1582
108
1607
Cone
010
09
08
07
06
05
04
03
02
01
Segment 1
Rate 1 Temp. 1
324
1022
324
1022
324
1022
324
1022
324
1022
324
1022
324
1022
324
1022
324
1022
324
1022
Segment 2
Rate 2 Temp. 2
153
1112
153
1112
153
1112
153
1112
153
1112
153
1112
153
1112
153
1112
153
1112
153
1112
Segment 3
Rate 3 Temp. 3
180
1549
180
1580
180
1620
180
1681
180
1720
180
1780
180
1837
180
1879
180
1908
180
1938
Segment 4
Rate 4 Temp. 4
108
1657
108
1688
108
1728
108
1789
108
1828
108
1888
108
1945
108
1987
108
2016
108
2046
Cone
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
Segment 1
Rate 1 Temp. 1
324
1022
324
1022
324
1022
324
1022
324
1022
324
1022
324
1022
324
1022
324
1022
324
1022
Segment 2
Rate 2 Temp. 2
153
1112
153
1112
153
1112
153
1112
153
1112
153
1112
153
1112
153
1112
153
1112
153
1112
Segment 3
Rate 3 Temp. 3
162
1863
162
1872
162
1890
162
1908
162
1951
162
2016
162
2046
162
2064
162
2084
162
2129
Segment 4
Rate 4 Temp. 4
108
2079
108
2088
108
2106
108
2124
108
2167
108
2232
108
2262
108
2280
108
2300
108
2345
Medium Fire Cones °F
High Fire Cones °F
14 Cone-Fire / Ramp-Hold
Cone-Fire Schedules - °C
Selecting a Fast speed in Cone-Fire increases the segment rates shown in this chart by 20%. Selecting a Slow speed decreases the segment rates by 20%. (However, the rate shown in this chart for the last segment remains the same whether you
select Fast, Medium, and Slow speeds.)
Note: Your controller accepts only cone numbers that fall within the kiln’s maximum temperature range.
Low Fire Cones °C
Cone
022
021
020
019
018
017
016
015
014
013
012
011
Segment 1
Rate 1 Temp. 1
220
526
220
540
220
566
220
618
220
655
220
678
220
712
220
731
220
747
220
777
220
801
220
815
Segment 2
Rate 2 Temp. 2
60
586
60
600
60
626
60
678
60
715
60
738
60
772
60
791
60
807
60
837
60
861
60
875
Cone
010
09
08
07
06
05
04
03
02
01
Segment 1
Rate 1 Temp. 1
180
550
180
550
180
550
180
550
180
550
180
550
180
550
180
550
180
550
180
550
Segment 2
Rate 2 Temp. 2
85
600
85
600
85
600
85
600
85
600
85
600
85
600
85
600
85
600
85
600
Segment 3
Rate 3 Temp. 3
100
843
100
860
100
882
100
916
100
938
100
971
100
1003
100
1026
100
1042
100
1059
Segment 4
Rate 4 Temp. 4
60
903
60
920
60
942
60
976
60
998
60
1031
60
1063
60
1086
60
1102
60
1119
Cone
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
Segment 1
Rate 1 Temp. 1
180
550
180
550
180
550
180
550
180
550
180
550
180
550
180
550
180
550
180
550
Segment 2
Rate 2 Temp. 2
100
600
100
600
100
600
100
600
100
600
100
600
100
600
100
600
100
600
100
600
Segment 3
Rate 3 Temp. 3
90
1017
90
1022
90
1032
90
1042
90
1066
90
1102
90
1119
90
1129
90
1140
90
1165
Segment 4
Rate 4 Temp. 4
60
1137
60
1142
60
1152
60
1162
60
1186
60
1222
60
1239
60
1249
60
1260
60
1285
Medium Fire Cones °C
High Fire Cones °C
15
Temperature Equivalents For
Orton Self-Supporting Pyrometric Cones
°F
Cone
Self-Supporting Cones
Num-ber
Heated at:
022
021
020
27° F
108° F
270° F
Per Hour* Per Hour* Per Hour*
—
1087
1094
—
1159
1180
—
019
1213
017
1301
018
016
015
014
013
012
011
010
09
08
07
06
05 1/2
1267
1368
1382
1395
1485
1549
1575
1636
1665
1692
1764
1798
1839
1112
1252
1319
1360
1422
1456
1485
1539
1582
1607
1657
1688
1728
1789
1828
1859
Pre-Fire
Color
Cone
Number
Green
022
Orange
020
1143
Fuschia
1283
Yellow
1353
1405
White
Pink
1465
Light Blue
1540
Gray
1504
1582
Violet
Green
1620
Fuschia
1679
Dark Red
1753
Dark Red
1641
1706
1809
1855
1877
Orange
Dark Red
Dark Red
Dark Red
Dark Red
05
1870
1888
1911
Dark Red
03
1960
1987
2019
Dark Red
04
02
01
1
2
3
4
5
5 1/2
6
7
8
9
10
1915
1972
1999
2028
2034
2039
2086
2118
2133
2165
2194
2212
2235
2284
1945
2016
2046
2079
2088
2106
2124
2167
2197
2232
2262
2280
2300
2345
1971
2052
2080
2109
2127
2138
2161
Dark Red
Dark Red
Dark Red
Dark Red
Dark Red
Dark Red
Gray
2205
Green
2269
Fuchsia
2320
Yellow
2237
2295
2336
2381
White
Orange
White
Pink
*Rate of temperature increase during last 90 - 120
minutes of firing. Tables by courtesy of the Edward
Orton, Jr. Ceramic Foundation.
16 Cone-Fire / Ramp-Hold
°C
Heated at:
021
Self-Supporting Cones
15° C
60° C
150° C
Per Hour* Per Hour* Per Hour*
—
—
—
586
590
626
638
600
019
656
678
017
705
738
018
016
015
014
013
012
011
010
09
08
07
06
05 1/2
686
742
750
757
807
843
857
891
907
922
962
981
1004
715
772
791
807
837
861
875
903
920
942
976
998
1015
Pre-Fire
Color
Green
617
Fuschia
695
Yellow
734
763
Orange
White
Pink
796
Light Blue
838
Gray
818
861
Violet
Green
882
Fuschia
915
Dark Red
956
Dark Red
894
930
987
1013
1025
Orange
Dark Red
Dark Red
Dark Red
Dark Red
05
1021
1031
1044
Dark Red
03
1071
1086
1104
Dark Red
04
02
01
1
2
3
4
5
1046
1078
1093
1109
1112
1115
1141
1159
1063
1102
1119
1137
1142
1152
1162
1186
1077
1122
1138
1154
1164
1170
1183
1239
1257
9
10
1224
1251
1260
1285
Gray
Yellow
1201
1249
Dark Red
1271
7
1211
Dark Red
Fuchsia
1225
8
Dark Red
1243
1203
1222
Dark Red
Green
1167
1185
Dark Red
1207
5 1/2
6
Dark Red
1280
1305
White
Orange
White
Pink
*Rate of temperature increase during last 90 - 120
minutes of firing. Tables by courtesy of the Edward
Orton, Jr. Ceramic Foundation.
Display
Messages
A temperature rise of 100° in two hours = 50° rate.
A temperature drop of 200° in one hour = 200° rate.
(Skip Step) (page 10) This message appears when
you press the
key during a Ramp-Hold firing.
You can skip out of a segment into the next segment.
The firing was stopped.
(Page 10) Ready for you to enter an alarm temperature. When the kiln reaches that temperature, the alarm
will sound.
(page 10) Ready for you to edit the target temperature of the current Ramp-Hold segment during firing. Example: You are fusing glass to a temperature of 1450°F. At
1445°F, you look at the glass through a peephole and realize
that the glass will need at least another 50° to fuse fully.
Change the target temperature to 1560° without having to
turn off the kiln to reprogram it.
(page 6) This is the prompt for Cone-Fire mode.
Press the
key to select Cone-Fire. The controller is
then ready for you to select a pyrometric cone number.
(page 4) Fired to completion.
The firing was stopped by pressing
.
The "Ready to Start" message appears after programming a firing. Press
to begin firing. Thermocouple Offset (press the
) and Delay (press the
) are accessed from the
message.
cooler.
(Page 13) Adjust the controller to fire hotter or
Trouble Shooter
Problem: Controller display is
blank. No heat in kiln.
(page 4) Delay is a count-down timer that starts
the firing when the time runs out.
I
Is the kiln connected to the power?
I
Has the circuit breaker tripped or fuse blown?
or
(and temperature) (page 8) The controller is ready for you to enter the target temperature (the
temperature that the kiln will fire to). Each segment in
Ramp-Hold mode has a target temperature.
I
Is power reaching the wall receptacle?
Test with a voltmeter or a test light if you are not sure.
I
Has the kiln switch box ½ amp fuse blown?
(page 8) Full power firing rate. At this setting the
kiln will fire at its fastest rate. Select a rate of 1799°F / 999°C
at the
prompt in Ramp-Hold mode. A fast way to do
this is to press the
key once from
.
will appear.
(page 8) Hold time of a segment, shown in hours
and minutes. (Example: 2 hours and 15 minutes = 02.15)
(Page 10) Add Hold Time: During a firing, you can
extend the hold time of a segment without having to first
stop the firing to reprogram the controller.
(page 3) The controller is ready for you to enter a
program or to begin a repeat firing.
Firing has begun. A moment after
you will hear the relay(s) clicking.
appears,
(page 8) These are
Ramp-Hold programs stored in memory.
etc. (Rate) (page 8) This appears in
Ramp-Hold programming for each segment. 1, 2, etc. are
segment numbers. Enter the rate of temperature change
for that segment. Rate is figured in degrees of temperature
change per hour. Example:
The kiln’s ½ amp fuse is
located in the kiln switch
box. Remove by pressing the
fuse holder and turning
counter-clockwise half a
turn. Check the fuse by placing the probes of an ohmmeter on the ends of the fuse. If
the ohmmeter reads less
than an ohm (digital meter)
or reads 0 ohms (analog meter), the fuse is okay. If the reading is OPEN (digital meter) or infinity/no needle movement (analog meter), the fuse is bad. Replacement fuse:
AGC 1/2 A 250V AC
I
Is the controller receiving power? Test the power INPUT connections on the back of the controller with a
voltmeter.
Controller Power
Input Test
Unplug the kiln. Remove the 4 screws holding
the controller faceplate to
the switch box. Lift faceplate out of box and let the
board hang on the box
with the back of the board
17
facing you. Plug the kiln back in. Touch voltmeter probes
(in AC mode) to both INPUT connections (the white and
orange wires).
reading on an analog meter, or OPEN on a digital
meter, indicates a broken element.
If the elements check out okay, replace the relay.
CAUTION: Do not let the back of the board touch a
grounded object. Make sure the voltmeter is in the AC
mode when placing the probes on INPUT connections.
Controller Power Input Test Result: No voltage
UNPLUG kiln. Check the switch box for disconnected
wires between the cord, transformer, and controller. If wiring is okay, replace the transformer.
Controller Power Input Test Result: 20 - 24 volts AC
Correct current is reaching the board from the transformer. But since the board is not lighting up, it is probably
defective. Return the controller for repair or replacement.
Controller Power Input Test Result: less than 20 volts
Did you recently replace the transformer? It may be the
wrong voltage. The voltage is below 20, which is not enough
power for the controller. To find out the cause of low voltage, continue below:
Controller Input Test #2
The back of the board is
still facing you and the kiln
is plugged in. Remove the
INPUT plug, which is the
white, orange, and blue
wires, from the back of the
controller. Touch a voltmeter probe to the white wire and the other probe to the orange wire.
Input Test #2 Result: Less than 20 Volts AC
There are two possible reasons: 1) Low voltage at the
wall receptacle; 2) defective transformer. If wall receptacle
voltage is correct, replace the transformer.
Input Test #2 Result: 20 - 24 Volts AC
The transformer is sending correct voltage to the controller. Yet when the INPUT plug was connected to the
controller, voltage was less than 20. This means the controller is draining the voltage and may be defective. Return the
controller for repair or replacement.
Problem: Controller display
turns on. No heat in kiln.
I
Is the relay making its normal clicking sound?
Test the elements with an ohmmeter:
Element Resistance Test
UNPLUG kiln/disconnect the power. Open the
kiln’s switch box. Make sure the wires connecting
the relay to the elements are secure. If connections are okay, continue to step 2:
Touch the ohmmeter leads to the two element connectors of each element. A no-needle-movement
18 Cone-Fire / Ramp-Hold
Note: To replace relay, see your kiln’s instruction and
service manual.
We know the controller is receiving voltage, because the
display is lit. But the voltage from the transformer may be
too low to power the relays. Perform the “Controller Power
Input Test,” left column. If your controller passes the Input
Test, perform the “Controller Power Output Test”:
Controller Power Output Test
Is the controller sending voltage to the relay? Test OUTPUT with a voltmeter:
UNPLUG the kiln/disconnect the power. Remove
the 4 screws holding the controller faceplate to the
switch box. Lift faceplate out of box and let the
controller hang on the outside of the box with the
back of the board facing you. Then plug the kiln
back in. Program the controller to fire to 1000°F at
FULL rate in Ramp-Hold mode. Press
.
Put the voltmeter in DC mode. (It must be in DC
mode when testing OUTPUT voltage.) Touch
probes to the red wire and black wire connections.
Measure voltage when the relay clicks on.
Output Test Result: No voltage at red and black wires
The controller is not sending power to the relay. Return
the controller for repair or replacement.
Output Test Result: 10 - 14 v. at red and black wires
The controller is sending correct power to the relay. Unplug kiln/disconnect power. Remove the kiln switch box.
Look for disconnected wires between the controller, relay
and elements. Check the wiring diagram to be sure wires
are connected to the correct terminals. Be sure connections
are tight. If the wiring is okay, replace the relay.
Note: To replace relay, see your kiln’s instruction and
service manual.
Problem: Kiln switch box ½
amp fuses keep blowing.
I
What size fuse are you using? Correct fuse:
AGC ½ A 250V AC
If the fuse is the correct size, perform the following test:
Kiln Switch Box ½ Amp Fuse Power Test
UNPLUG the
kiln/disconnect the
power. Remove the
4 screws holding the
controller board
faceplate to the
switch box. Lift
faceplate out of box
and let the board hang on the outside of the box with
the back of the board facing you. Disconnect both
wire plugs from the back of the controller. Then
plug the kiln back in. Apply power to kiln. If fuse
blows, replace the transformer. (If the fuse does not
blow, the problem is a board or relay. Go to step 2.)
Connect the INPUT plug (orange, blue, and white
wires) to the board again. Leave off the OUTPUT
wire plug (the one with the red and black wires).
Program the controller to fire to 1000°F at FULL
rate in Ramp-Hold mode. Press
. If the fuse
blows, replace or service the board. (If the fuse does
not blow, the problem is caused by a short in the coil
of a relay. Go to step 3.)
UNPLUG kiln/disconnect power. Reconnect the
OUTPUT wire plug. Reinstall the board in the
switch box. Replace the relay.
Problem: The kiln overfires.
I
Did you see an error message such as
?
If not, the thermocouple gave a faulty reading, so the
controller did not shut off the kiln. Sometimes a shelf can
bump against the thermocouple and push it out of the firing
chamber. Make sure the thermocouple is pushed far
enough into the firing chamber.
A 1/8” diameter thermocouple should extend into the
firing chamber ½” - 5 8”.
A ¼” diameter thermocouple should extend into the firing chamber 1” or more.
Keep shelves, posts and ware 1” - 1 ½” away from the
thermocouple.
I
Do the elements stay on after you press
?
If so, the electrical contacts inside a relay are stuck in the
closed position. This will also cause elements to turn on as
soon as you plug in the kiln. Replace the relay.
My kiln is not shutting off when it
reaches cone 06. It is holding the temperature
1861°F for hours and hours. After the controller
shows me "cone 06" I see "5. 20." How do I eliminate
this?
Please check Program Review. A long
hold time has been added to cone 06. The 5. 20
means the hold will continue for 5 hours and 20 minutes. To remove the hold time, please reprogram the
kiln for cone 06. When you see the Hold prompt, enter 0000.
Index
Abrt . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17
Add Hold Time . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10
ALAr . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17
alarm . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10
bAdP . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12
center display dot . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3
CHGt . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10, 17
clicking noise . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2
COnE . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6, 17
Cone-Fire . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5, 6
cooling segment . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9, 10, 12
CPLT (complete) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4, 17
dELA . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4, 17
Delay timer . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4
display dots . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3
editing target temperature . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10
EtH. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12
FaIL . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12
FtL . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12
fuse . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17
HLdt. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10, 17
Hold . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6, 9
lost wax casting . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11
PF 1 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4, 12
PF 2 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4, 12
PF 3 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4, 13
power failures . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4, 12
power surges . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4
Program Review . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4
pyrometric witness cones . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5, 14, 15, 16
Ramp-Hold . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5, 7, 8
rate . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7, 8
repeating a firing. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4
scrolling numbers rapidly . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4
self-supporting cones . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5, 16
Skip Segment. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10
SStP . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10, 17
target temperature . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7
tC . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13
tCL . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13
tCOS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13
tCr . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13
temperature display, °F and °C . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3, 13
thermocouple . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3, 19
Thermocouple Offset . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13
thunder storms . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4
wax . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11
witness cone. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5
19
Shorthand Instructions
These instructions may be confusing until you have read more detailed instructions on Cone-Fire, page 6, or Ramp-Hold,
page 8. Read the safety guidelines, page 3. After pressing the keys in the left column, the message in the center will appear.
Cone-Fire
Keys to Press
Display
-
(Not Down Arrow)
Select COnE
/
(Last cone fired)
Select cone number
/
(Sample cone)
Select speed
(Sample speed)
Enter Hold Time
(Or hold time)
The kiln is now firing.
Ramp-Hold
Keys to Press
Display
-
(Not Down Arrow)
Enter Segment 1 rate
Select Program #1, 2, 3, or 4
(Sample rate)
or
Enter Temperature
(Sample temperature)
Enter Hold Time
(Or hold time)
First segment not needed: enter a rate of 0000.
The kiln is now firing.
20 Cone-Fire / Ramp-Hold