Friday, March 6, 2009


Yesterday, after an 8 month uphill battle, I made it through the last slip barrel and processed it into usable clay. When I came in to the university there were a ridiculous amount of slip barrels and between that and the slop produced in class it took me quite awhile to get through it. Woo hoo!

I purchased my thick wood stock for my wheel from a local supplier on thursday and took it to a millwork shop to have it flattened and squared. I found a great deal on 12/4 red oak for $1.20 per board foot. 12/4 refers to the thickness (12 quarters=3") and board foot is sort of a measurement of volume( 3" thick x 12" wide x 72" long =18 bd. ft.) Most of what I could find was anywhere from $8-14 per bd.ft. and would have been shipped to me for about $50+ more. This oak was in pretty nasty shape(hence the price) so I had to buy more than I actually needed to get good pieces out of it but I still came out far ahead. It's not the prettiest wood but it has a lot of character which I prefer.

Here are 2 pieces that were milled for me.

Here you can see the thickness and the rough edge. The other edge is cleaned up and squared so this edge will be waste. After planing the thickness came out to be 2 3/8".

Here is all the stock cut up. The plans call for 3x3" legs but to end up with 3" you have to start with 4" rough lumber which is quite pricy and unavailable locally. So my legs will end up being 2 3/8 x 3", eh what can you do? One of the pieces I got wasn't actually oak, it's sweetgum so I'm not sure what I'm going to do with it, I know I'll use it for the treadle bar at least.

Here are a few pots I made on Wed. during my advanced class. We were exploring ways of embellishing the surface but still being able to finish right off the wheel. The piece on the far right has a white slip between the ridges.


Anonymous said...

Do you get your hard woods from a lumber yard or a more specialized supplier?

brandon phillips said...

the 3/4 stock for the tray came from lowes. the thick stock came from a lumberyard that specializes in serving woodworkers/cabinet makers and carries a variety of rough hardwoods generally up to 2" thick. then i took it to a millshop that makes cabinets to have it milled.

Ron said...

Looking great there. Are you going to do all the joint work? Of course you are. You make me sick. Please don't tell me you are going to machine and weld the crank bar too! Really cool Brandon, that wheel will stay w. you forever.
Rock on!

brandon phillips said...

yes i am. believe it or not i am(was?) a certified welder. I took some courses when I was in college and passed a basic certification test for stick welding. at one time i thought welding would be a decent backup career but it turns out i'm allergic to the flux on the rods. i'm not that great at steel fabrication but the prof. at the univ. where i teach is pretty fantastic at steelwork so i think between the 2 of us we can get it done. i'd like to do it all myself or at least have a hand in it but the steelwork has to be dead on so if i end up having to take it to a machine shop that's what i'll do.