Christy's giving me a break from the stoking, so I can rest up before we finish the first chamber and transition into the second chamber. I thought I would use this time to update everyone on our week.
Before loading we undertook a little kiln work. First I cut out the cob around the spy holes and inserted new spy hole openings/plugs. The spy hole opening/plugs have been sitting around a while. It's nice to finally get them installed.
We've also had some bricks shifting around our first chamber door. Nothing serious, I imagine it's something we could have ignored for many years to come. However, since we would rather not rebuild the first chamber any sooner than we have to, we decided to address the issue before it progressed any more.
All of the lower brick from the main arch are cut to "lock into the first chamber entrance arch.
However, the top of the main arch simply rests on top of the first chamber entrance. This has slowly pushed the entrance forward bit by bit.
First things first. I cut the cob off of the offending juncture then knocked several of the bricks out from the inside.
Set up a makeshift arch form.
Then packed in castable, which I've decided is the equivalent of duct tape the for kiln builders. The stuff is simply irreplaceable.
The castable now sits in a solid block both behind the entrance and on top of it. I believe this should hold everything pretty stable.
Then with only two days left we got the kiln loaded:
More earthenware tests in the third chamber:
A full second chamber with some re fires. Due to the "incident" in the second chamber last firing, most of the pots on the top of the stack were under fired, so they are getting a second chance.
We only ended up with half a chambers worth of pots remaining for the first chamber.
We had initially considered simply firing the first chamber. However we really enjoy the variety of effects we can get from the two different chambers, so we went ahead with stacking pots in both chambers. We would have loved to push back the firing long enough to have a full first chamber, but the need for pots for our upcoming show at the VIVA Gallery took priority. If anybody is in the Viroqua area please feel free to come on out this Thursday to see the new pots hot out of the kiln.
We should be finished firing this evening, and have the pots out Tuesday just in time to get them to the opening. Nothing like the last minute!
Stokers gallery coming soon.