I got right back to work on the kiln as soon as I arrived home from Minnesota. I'm just about finished but I have a small punch list to knock out. I still need to cast salt troughs for the firebox and set the bagwalls, set up the burners, and build some storage for the kiln shelves and posts.
I put up a metal roof for the shed and flashed around the chimney.
This is the door frame and the I-beam trolley system. The beam is about 12' long and extends out the side of the shed.
The oil burners require a much smaller and tapered port. I found these plastic funnels that were just the right size. I built a little frame and cast them using Mizzou castable. They should work just fine.
Here is the 99% finished kiln. The door is constructed of high alumina soft brick, this is the same brick I used on both of my previous wood kilns and it held up pretty well. I coated the kiln side of the brick with a thinned down mix of AP Green #36 high alumina cement. I wanted to use greenpatch 421, which is fairly common amongst potters. My supplier was out of that and recommended the #36 as it has a higher amount of alumina, about 70%. I did discover that it will not bond if there is any dust on the brick, which is a tall order for soft brick, but I think I made it work. Time will tell if that coating makes a difference. The door track works great, I can move the 700# door with one hand quite easily. I'm excited about it!
I mixed clay several days ago and it should come out of the racks in a week or so and then it's on to making pots!
Sunday, May 11, 2014
We had a great time in Minnesota this last week. We spent some time up at the north shore doing some hiking and sightseeing the nature. In Texas we lack the kind of nature that I love, tall trees, rocky hills, rivers, waterfalls, etc. This is a photo of Sadie and me at Gooseberry Falls, north of Duluth.
The St. Croix pottery tour was insane. I've never seen so many pots and so many people buying pots. I was able to meet a few people in real life, plus briefly catch up with some other folks like Dan Finnegan, Michael Hunt/Naomi Dalglish, and Linda Christianson. There were a few potters whose work I was excited to see in person, and knowing that I would be heading up there I saved a few bucks for some pots. Since we flew up and I had a tiny budget I was limited to small pots like cups and bowls.
I picked up some cups by Sam Taylor, Mark Shapiro, and Dan Finnegan. Sadie picked up a Randy Johnston and a Linda Christianson.
I also got these nice pasta bowls from Kent Mclaughlin and Bob Briscoe, and a dinner plate by Sarah Jaeger. I'm not usually one for bright colors but I've always loved these blue pots she does.
These cups are by Michael Hunt from Bandana Pottery, the one on the left is mine, the other two I picked up for some other folks.
I saw this large slab dish (about 15") in the middle of the Bandana pottery display and I loved it and couldn't stop talking about it, but it was too expensive and a little too large to carry home. Sadie decided to buy it for me as an early birthday present, that was really nice of her. I picked a winner.
Tomorrow it's back to the kiln build.
Monday, May 5, 2014
Thursday, May 1, 2014
Here is an update about the kiln build, I'm making some good progress, I'm starting the steel work this weekend and would like to get the arch up as well. Next Tuesday the lady and I are heading to Minnesota on vacation for a week. I'm going to hit up the St. Croix Pottery Tour for a day, I'm really excited about that. So I'm trying to cram as much building in as I can before we go.
I like arches with a steep slope, not quite a barrel arch but pretty close.
Back to the grind.