Best Kiln for Precious Metal Clay – Buyer’s Guide and Reviews

Precious metal clay (often abbreviated to simply ‘PMC’) is a crafting material made from very small particles of metal. It can come in silver, gold, bronze or copper and is commonly used in making jewelry, beads, and ornaments. 

Not just any type of kiln is required for PMC, and in this article, we’ll explore the best kilns on the market for the job. 

At a Glance – The Best Kilns For Precious Metal Clay On The Market

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Here’s what we’ll cover:

Buyer’s Guide –  Key Considerations

When looking for a kiln, there are always several things to look out for. When you’re looking for one to use with precious metal clay; you have a couple of other points to check out.

  • What size do you need? How big your projects will be, determines how big your kiln is. Precious metal clay kilns tend to be smaller than other kilns. You need to keep this in mind. If you were planning on using this kiln for other projects; check what you’re buying.
  • What type of projects? Do you require high or low temperatures for the type of projects you need to complete? Precious metal clay tends to be used for small pieces, such as jewelry. These are fired in a kiln at certain temperatures. Make sure you know what you want.
  • What surface will the kiln be on? Whatever kiln you buy needs to be placed on a flat, clean surface that is clear of debris. Look for a kiln that is well insulated on the outside, this protects the surface from the feet of the kiln.

Features

There are some features on kilns that you will need, in order to work with precious metal clay. Look for the following:

  • Exterior thermometer
  • Vent
  • Door to open up (front doors are the best)
  • Freestanding shelf

Best Kiln For Precious Metal Clay – Product Round-up and Reviews

Rapidfire Pro Kiln w/Digital Programmable Controller

Rapidfire Pro Kiln w/Digital Programmable Controller for PMC Jewelry Making, Beadmaking

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The Rapidfire kiln is the ultimate kiln for portability. This is the one to buy if you’re a crafter on the go. It even has a useful carry handle, just to make your life a little easier. The kiln can heat up to around 2200 degrees F, within roughly 8-10 minutes. It also has a large firing chamber, measuring in at roughly 6” x 6” x 5”. The door is front opening and shutting.

Weighing in at only 12 pounds, this is the perfect kiln for anyone wishing to easily transport their work to different places. Or, someone who needs to move it from the kitchen table to a storage cupboard. The digital temperature controller makes it useful for anyone needing multiple projects simultaneously.  The price is rather good for a kiln of its quality; the brand Rapidfire is known for its high-quality materials and goods.


Tabletop QuikMelt 120 oz PRO-120-4 KG Melting Furnace

Tabletop QuikMelt 120 oz PRO-120-4 KG Melting Furnace - Stainless Steel Kiln Jewelry Making Metal Melting Casting Enameling Glass Fusing Precious Metal Clay Kiln Made in USA

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As its namesake, this kiln is perfect for most tabletops. The Quikmelt is specifically designed to melt precious metal clays in as little as ten minutes. It specifies it can melt up to 100 troy oz of gold. (Troy oz are different from normal oz). The Quikmelt can fire up to temperatures of around 2200 degrees F, perfect for all forms of jewelry making.

This kiln is designed for various projects including glass fusing, enameling and jewelry making. So you know you aren’t buying a one-trick pony! If you’re the type of crafter that knows they will be into several hobbies, try this kiln. Once again, this kiln is portable, weighing in at only 12 pounds! Price is very similar to the Rapidfire.


Delphi Ez Pro 15-6 Kiln

Delphi Ez Pro 15-6 Kiln

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The Delphi EZ Pro is expensive, this is the higher budget item on the list. At twice the price of the other items on the list, you should only buy this if you are a professional or someone who has big pockets! The Delphi comes with 16 pre-set programs, ready for you to peruse and choose at your leisure. There are also 22 custom programs for you to install yourself. This is the kiln for those wishing to fire multiple and various projects at the same time. It’s smart and easy to use.

The top and side-firing elements allow for quicker and more uniform heating. You can be guaranteed of a quality firing. The large firing chamber is great for those wishing for larger projects or multiple smaller ones. This is not a portable kiln, weighing in at 80 pounds. You will need a designated area for it. It heats up to nearly 2000 degrees F, but does so fairly quick and stays steady the entire time it’s activated.  


So, Which Should I Buy?

This depends on what type of crafter you are. The Delphi is brilliant for professionals who need to make multiple projects, such as pendants and earrings. It is expensive but great at uniform firing. The Rapidfire and Quikmelt are both great for any hobbyist wanting to get into precious metal clay firing, but doesn’t have a massive budget.

I don’t have an overall winner for these kilns. The Rapidfire is made by a reputable company, with high-quality materials. The Quikmelt is designed for various projects, not only precious metal clay work. Decide what you want out of your kiln and go from there.


Image Credits:

Featured Image Source: Lesley Chandler / CC BY-SA 2.0