Kiln Support
Paragon HomeKiln ProductsWhere To Buy KilnsKiln SupportAbout ParagonKiln Resellers and Dealers
Search Menu

Kiln Pointers

How the Kiln Sitter Works

The Kiln Sitter is easy to adjust once you understand how it works.


How the Kiln Sitter Works

A Kiln Sitter Pointer

Reader Response: Frances Darby

Paragon Closed July 4 – 6



The Dawson Kiln Sitter is simple: A piece of clay bends when exposed to heat, which releases a trigger that turns off the kiln. Once you know how the Kiln Sitter works, you will find it easier to adjust.

Inside the kiln, a small clay pyrometric cone is centered horizontally on the Kiln Sitter cone supports. A lightweight rod that pivots up and down inside a tube rests on top of the cone.

A metal block is mounted to the other end of the rod outside the kiln. The block is called a claw and presses down over the end of a hinged weight. The claw prevents the vertical weight from dropping. If you removed the cone and lifted the rod up, the weight would drop.

The kiln heats up. When the pyrometric cone has been exposed to the amount of heat rated for that particular cone, the cone bends, and the rod that rests on top of it moves downward. As the end of the rod moves downward, the opposite end moves upward. This releases the weight.

When the weight drops, it moves a locking slide, which in turns releases spring-loaded electric contacts. The kiln shuts off.

The adjustments that every operator should know:

1) Adjust the actuating rod so that it is centered in the porcelain tube.

2) Adjust the trigger at the end of the weight. (You will need a firing gauge.)


This idea came from a potter named Mel Jacobson:

Keep chairs, stools, and small loading tables away from the kiln. Many of these items are the same height as the Kiln Sitter vertical weight on the outside of the kiln. It is so very easy for someone to come by and move a stool or small table up against the weight, which will prevent it from dropping, thus causing the kiln to overfire. When Mel taught high school, he banned stools and chairs from the kiln room.


Last week I announced the death of Frances Darby, who founded Paragon. Ginny Reisinger of Ceramic Industry magazine in Powell, Ohio wrote, “Thank you for sending the information about Frances Darby. While it is sad to hear of her passing, I felt inspired reading about her. I did not know Paragon was founded by a woman, and I know first hand how unusual it was to find women successful in business back in the ‘old days.’ She sounds like such a wonderful person and has truly left an outstanding legacy.”

Thank you, Ginny.


Paragon will be closed July 4 – 6. We will be back on Monday, July 9. I hope you have an enjoyable fourth wherever you are in the world.


Ten years ago I was caught in a flash flood on Greenville Avenue in Dallas. My wife, son, and I stayed for over two hours in our Toyota van amidst the rushing water. We could feel the tires lifting off the pavement as the van floated down the street in water that reached the windshield. Finally, the fast-flowing water wedged one of the tires against the concrete curb by forming a trough in the dirt. This stopped the van from drifting toward deeper water.

We have had two weeks of rain here in Mesquite. This has given me the opportunity to use knowledge that I gained from the flood: Do not drive through water if you cannot see the curb by the side of the road. Unless you can see the curb, it is difficult to gauge the depth of water especially when you are driving.

Thank you,

With best wishes,

Arnold Howard Paragon Industries, L.P. – Better Designed Kilns 2011 South Town East Blvd. Mesquite, TX 75149-1122 Voice: 972-288-7557 & 800-876-4328 / Fax: 972-222-0646 /

PRIVACY NOTICE: Under no circumstance do we share or sell your email address.

Copyright 2007, by Paragon Industries, L.P.

Paragon Kilns on FacebookParagon Kilns on Twitter Paragon Kilns on YouTube Paragon RSS Feed

Kilns Sold

Get The Adobe Reader


  • Home
  • Privacy Statement
  • Legal Notice
  • Paragon's Green Statement
  • Where To Buy Kilns
  • Resellers
  • About Us
  • Contact Paragon
  • News & Events
  • Support

  • Kiln Technicians
  • Kiln Support
  • Products

  • Bead Kiln
  • Glass Blower's Crucible Furnace
  • Ceramic Kilns
  • China Painting Kilns
  • Enameling Kilns
  • Industrial Furnaces
  • Glass Kilns
  • Lamp Working Kilns
  • Pottery/Ceramic and Glass
  • Pottery Kilns
  • Silver Clay Kilns
  • Wax Burnout Furnaces
  • Heat Treating Furnaces
  • Knife Making Furnaces
  • Custom Furnaces
  • Discontinued Models
  • “Custom and standard Kilns and Industrial Furnaces for ceramics, pottery, heat treating, enameling,
    dentistry, laboratory, and glass fusing.
    Better Designed Kilns from Paragon Industries!"