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Vertical Air Bath Knife Kilns

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Part Number: VAB Kilns

Meet the revolutionary Vertical Air Bath Furnace:
Straight blades. Vertical 360° heat.

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Explore our Vertical Air Bath Knife Kilns:



Jen-Ken Kilns Knife Kiln Price Table 2024

About Jen-Ken Knife Kilns

We sought the wisdom of seasoned professionals and, armed with their insights, developed a groundbreaking line of heat treat ovens and furnaces. 
Our Vertical Air Bath Knife Kilns redefine traditional heat-treating, enhancing every aspect of your process.

Experience the pinnacle of precision and performance with these expertly engineered kilns, designed to meet the unique demands of bladesmiths.


6 ways our Vertical Air Bath kilns outrank other heat-treating furnaces

  • Space-Saving, Portable Design. Our Vertical Air Bath kilns feature an innovative vertical, top-loading configuration, and most include a stand with casters for easy mobility. With a compact footprint of approximately 2' x 2', these kilns optimize floor space usage, offering a significantly smaller footprint compared to virtually all other knife kilns on the market.

  • Uniform Heating with Vertical Blade Suspension. We've solved the issue of uneven heating with our innovative Vertical Air Bath furnace series. By suspending blades vertically, our furnace provides 360° heat, ensuring uniform heat soaking at the desired temperature. The refractory brick furnace, equipped with a specially designed baffle, contains heat below the baffle when the lid opens and allows blades of all shapes and sizes to process together!

  • Efficient Handling. A unique cool touch handle, which is reversible to either side, allows you to lift the lid from the side without a blast of heat. Blades can be easily removed with tongs, and the lid is quickly lowered to minimize heat loss. The chamber is heated from below the baffle with additional coils in the top for faster recovery when blades are removed.

  • Advanced Controls. The Vertical Air Bath is equipped with a standard 3-button controller loaded with popular normalizing, tempering, and heat treatment schedules. You can upgrade to the Orton AutoFire 4000 12-button controller for ease of programming or choose the popular TAP Touchscreen Controller. All Jen-Ken kilns, ovens, and furnaces come with standard mechanical relays, which can be upgraded to solid-state technology.

  • Large Capacity. The Vertical Air Bath chamber comfortably holds up to 12 blades of varying shapes. Blades can be suspended using a pin through the tang, a spring clasp, or by turning the tang sideways between movable ceramic rods. Foil-wrapped blades can also be suspended using the support pin or spring clasp method. This versatile suspension format leaves your blades stress-free and straight throughout the process.

  • Enhanced Safety. The power-interrupt lid switch de-energizes the oven as you remove a blade, then reheats when the lid is closed, quickly returning to the full holding temperature. Blades never touch the kiln or each other, reducing heat sinks, cold spots, and warping. The vertical suspension ensures spines remain straight as blades are removed and lowered directly into the oil quench, allowing uniform heat absorption and unimpeded movement.

How other knife kilns work

Blades are inserted horizontally into a standard front-loading oven for normalization, hardening, or tempering. As temperatures rise, blades can bend and warp from leaning on their sides. Uneven heat distribution in these kilns exacerbates warping. They heat from the sides and back, causing the front door area to be cooler. This results in the tip and body of the blade being hotter than the tang, leading to internal stress and more warping potential. Blades in the middle receive the least heat.


When the front door is opened, the red-hot blade must be carefully transferred from horizontal to vertical for quenching. This transition can cause further bending, requiring time-consuming straightening. The traditional kiln design also occupies significant workshop space, often necessitating deep tables or stands. This setup can force you to reach around a hot kiln, creating a dangerous workspace.


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