At Winthrop, we do raku a bit differently than most folks. We use the electric kilns! Here is an advanced students who enjoys helping me out with this event. Yes, he is taking a pot right out of the hot kiln. I have to admit when I was first told that this was how I needed to fire the raku pots I thought "yikes, this sounds a little dangerous!" I'm all about throwing wood and salt in fireboxes but fooling around with opening lids of kilns can get a bit dicey! Marshall here enjoys that whole excitement of it all and doesn't mind wearing all the gear. I let him do all the hot stuff while I'm on the side for back-up and helping organize the students in getting the hot garbage cans out the door of our building. Once the pots are taken out of the kiln we put them into trash-cans filled with newsprint and drag them out the door. Some glazes require a burst of air blown on them for the crazing effect before being put into the cans.
Once they get outside, depending the on the glaze, we "burp" the cans to let in some oxygen and as you can see here, at times the flame will shoot back up. This creates so much excitement! The students are all so apprehensive at first but by mid-point they want to "burp" the cans as well.