Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Thanks Everyone

Thanks everyone, for a wonderful weekend at the Celebration of Seagrove Potters.

Especially Mary, for all her behind-scenes work.

Friday, November 16, 2012

I Like my Rubber

My booth at Celebration this year
My booth at the Celebration of Seagrove Potters has a new look this year with the addition of three large rubber floor mats. I opted for the big mats as opposed to the puzzle type mat, and so far I'm happy with my choice.
The rolls of rubber (recycled rubber) are a bit heavy and bulky, but they go down quickly and lay flat nicely. They do pick up dirt quickly, but the dirt doesn't seem to detract from the appearance. The more foot prints that get set into the rubber, the more it just becomes lighter in appearance, the prints just melding into each other.
I could clean it the morning of the show, but then it'll just get covered again.
So, if you're coming to the show, stop in and rest your feet on my rubber while you browse my newest pots.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Playing with Embers

Looking through firebox
At the end of our most recent firing in our wood kiln, I noticed some little sparklers developing, as if we were celebrating the end of another successful firing, at least I hope so....

We actually built up quite a bed of embers under the grate where the wood burns. Normally, we try to keep the bed of embers in check, so that air enters the kiln and gets preheated as it passes over the bed of embers. We keep two holes open at the bottom of the kiln, and we keep an eye on the height of the bed of embers, raking out coals if necessary, or pulling another brick out of the holes to allow more air to enter.

The kiln fires most efficiently with the correct amount of air entering over the bed of coals.

But at the end of this firing, we experimented with allowing the coals to nearly fill the entire area under the grates as we kept the firebox filled with wood. This seemed to keep the front of the kiln from rising in temperature, but allowed the back of the kiln to climb in temperature.

We actually had the back of the kiln higher in temperature than the front of the kiln. However, we ran out of wood before we could see if our technique could allow us to get the back up to the same as the front. We reached cone 9 in the back and cone 13 in the front.

We're unloading today.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Quick Glimpse

Levi pulled this mug out early.
We didn't get the back as hot as we wanted, but we did manage to maintain a more even kiln front and back toward the end of the firing. We might have fed the kiln more wood, but we ran out at the end of the firing after 13 1/2 hours.

We'll be unloading tomorrow and bringing some of these pots to the Celebration of Seagrove Potters this weekend. Levi will probably have some for sale at the CO-Op of Seagrove Potters.

 Here's a few pictures from the front and back of the kiln:

Front shelves
Bottom of front shelves, cone 14 still standing
Back of kiln
Back of kiln, cones 9,10,11

Monday, November 12, 2012

Foggy Morning Firing

It's 6 a.m. and a heavy fog shrouds the kiln shed and surrounding trees this morning. I've just finished my first cup of coffee. In a few minutes, Mary and I will smudge the kiln, and I'll light a small fire under the grates of the firebox inside the kiln. We've got a mix of pallet wood from Pakistan and a variety of firewood from a recent cut under the power lines on our property - willow, oak, pine and gum.

Back of kiln (Levi's bowls, mugs and small soul pots


Friday, November 9, 2012

Nailed this Post

Sometimes, I hit the nail on the head with my posts, but my last post was a bit bland and technical. I apologize. Here's a bit of sculpture I unloaded from the kiln today, as I was cleaning out the firebox. I fired with all used pallet wood last firing and had an overabundance of nails that fused together in the firebox. Yes, that's one of my new table pedestals. (See last post for a mundane description of how I made those.)

Nail Sculpture
Up Close

I think I nailed this post, huh?

Thursday, November 8, 2012

My Rendering of some Table Pedestals

I'm always trying to make a better display of my pots when I go to a show, and the upcoming Celebration of Seagrove Potters Nov. 17 and 18 inspired me to create some different sized pedestals. I wanted to make some pedestals that I could collapse so they didn't take up a lot of space, as Mary and I like to take the Prius to shows if at all possible.

An evening of searching online led me to a site where I ordered four 8-foot lengths of "clear two-way corner channel joiners" from U.S. Plastic Corporation. Cost, $45 (includes shipping). I have some 2-foot by 4-foot sheets of Formica covered hardboard which are black on one side, and I was hoping to build the pedestals with these, cutting them to size. But they were too thick, so I ended up using them for the top of the pedestal and bought a 4' x 8' 1/4-inch plywood from Lowes Home Improvement, cost $20.

Here's a few pictures with the final one showing the three sizes of pedestals I made. I ended up making four 10 x 10 x10 cubes, six 6 x 6 x 6 cubes,  two 6 x 6 x 10 pedestals and one 12 x 12 x 4 pedestal before running out of channel joiner.

Here's a section of the Channel Joiner

A hacksaw easily cut through the plastic joiner

Plywood that I cut and stained. These are 10" x 10"
I painted edges of tops black to match the Formica

I added electrical tape on each joiner to hide a seam

I think the tape created a nice look.

So, I glued one Channel Joiner onto each piece of plywood, so that the pedestals can be pulled apart and stacked in a box and stored for later use. The top has four pieces of felt (one side sticky) placed underneath in such a way that prevents the top from sliding too much. I'll share a picture of the booth when we get it set up next Thursday for the Celebration. I also ordered some rubber mats online for the floor of the booth, three four-foot wide by 10-foot long mats. I've spent too much time on these pedestals. Levi and I are planning to fire the wood kiln Monday. I've been sharing pictures of pots on Facebook, but I've neglected the blog. I'll have to get back to sharing more on the blog.

Hope to see some of you at the Celebration.