Monday, May 24, 2010

Bowls are Keeping me Busy



What I've been referring to as "my future workshop" is now
my current workshop as I've begun production on "foot bowls."
Wedging table on right is one I made for Wild Rose Pottery.


Not many posts lately. I've been working on - GUESS WHAT? - foot-soaking bowls. Mary and I spent yesterday afternoon driving to Greensboro for some two-inch thick foam boards (4' by 8') to make bats out of. I don't actually throw on these bats. I use them to flip large pots onto. I'm making these bowls in two pieces. One piece is a large platter (the bottom of the bowl). One piece is a bottomless bowl of sorts. I have to flip the platter over to trim it, then flip it again to score and slip it, then flip it again, so that I (and one other person) can lift and place it on the top of the bottomless bowl. Once the two pieces are attached, I flip the whole thing over.

So, it's a lot of flipping of heavy pieces, and the foam lessens the weight. I have wondered about the possibility of actually throwing on the foam, but I haven't tried it. I don't think it's dense enough for that.

Anyways, we got two 4 x 8 pieces of foam, two 4 x 8 sheets of MDF or hardboard (for bats), four sets of metal shelving for the tool shed and one set for the workshop to hold the bowls. I've got to make 75 bowls by the end of June. Today, we ordered a new kiln to help fire the bowls. I bought a Skutt 1231 because of the extra height. I'm thinking it will allow me to stack the first bowl on a shelf just off the floor of the kiln and help keep that first bowl from being underfired.

We got the best price ($2,427 plus $193 shipping) from Bennett Pottery in Florida, and they also had the quickest turnaround time between ordering and getting the kiln. They said they should be able to ship it to me this Friday.

I've also ordered four Corelite shelves, full round, 26 inches, so I don't have to wad the bowls when spanning two half shelves.

Call me crazy, but I signed a contract to make 195 of these bowls by the end of August. Today I spent most of the day trimming four platters, putting the bowls together, trimming the top of the bowls at a specific angle, then touching them up with a cheap vegetable peeler.

I also started running again. It's been quite a few years, but I think it will help keep my body from falling apart while doing this order.

Tomorrow, I'll be making some more bowl pieces - after putting my new set of shelves together.



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