It's one of those rainy days... that we really need here. Nice light rain that will probably continue for a day or more. Perfect weather to be inside working on pots for the next firing, and none to soon. All this firing and shelf and brick moving has left the hands in need of some clay therapy. The new camera isn't letting download pictures onto the computer, so here are a few random shots of random pots from the spring firing. So here are a couple of column from the middle of the kiln.
Little pots, lots of flyash.
Two columns still in the ashs. The colours on these worked out well, but the flash on the camera (the one that doesn't like the computer now) washed them out some. Well ~Make good pots~
This is a view looking out of the kiln. So many pictures are looking into the kiln. Good to look the other way every now and then!
Here are a few of the columns out amounst the flowers.
This is a picture looking between the columns. It looks a bit like a forest.
Here is a picture of the next layer in. It looks like there are some goodies here. The columns on the bottom of the tier got well reduced with some browns, blacks and reds showing. I've added progressive amounts of red clay to the body as the pots go further back. The pots in the fourth and fifth stoke hole had a bizen like clay that is very red and matures at about cone 4-7.
Here was a nice surprise, this little handbuilt teapot was sitting in the second tier of pots. It's a shino with heavy fly ash. Can't wait to try it out. Then of course it becomes a used pot. ` Make good pots.
Here is the door down with all the ash still in place. We got about 50 gallons of ash out of the firebox. Some will get used for glaze and the rest will be used on the lawn and flower beds as fertilizer.
Here is another picture of the columns. The camera has a flash so the colours are not quite right on these. It's a new camera so I'm still working out how this modern inconvenience works.
Here is Leona taking out some of the ash. We had a beautiful day to start to unload. The temp on the inside of the kiln was about 100F. Warm but not to bad. We waited for the kiln to get that cool not because the pots needed to be that cool to unload, but because we didn't want to get overheated unloading. We are going slow on unloading the pots, so that we can take the time to actually look at them! So besides unloading the kiln, we split wood, mowed the lawn and cleaned up around the kiln.
Finally here are some of the first columns to come out of the kiln. I'm pretty chuffed about the way they recorded the flame and ash. Well that's it for this post. Make good pots~~~
I haven't salt fired in about ten years, so this was a mild foray into the world of vapor glazing again. It seems now days there is more soda firing going on than salt. We used about 5lbs of Safety salt that was sprinkled onto four curved wood pieces, two in each side. The cone 11 was down but the 12 was still standing very straight. This was at the end of the fire into the hidden chamber just behind the seitma. Here are a couple of pics of us pouring the salt on the wood and stoking the hidden chamber.
Barry and dave doing the final stoke of the firing. They look more awake in the photo than they really were.
Here is Dave stoking the main firebox. It is about 2 oclock in the morning of Saturday and we are raising the temp for the final time. Firing this kiln is more than one person can do. Fortunately there are folks like Dave that like to stay up all night and play with fire. I am truly grateful for Dave and the other crazies that think that a good time is to stay up all night and play with fire.
The ember bed was a little high, we had mainly oak to stoke this time and oak coals up and leaves a large ember bed. We pulled off about 20 gallons of embers to get the firebox running efficiently. Different woods coal up differently and oak seems to be on the high end. With anagama's regulating the height and size of the ember bed is important to be able to reach the temperatures that you want.
Here I am starting to sidestoke the second stoke hole. I stoke this tier a lot during the firing for ash effects. The kiln is still at about 200F after cooling for a week. The kiln opening will be Monday afternoon. Oh.. I peeked and am really looking forward to the opening!!
Today we mudded up the door and started the small fire! The mud is just dirt that we dug up from around the kiln and sieved. Last firing I used clay but that flaked off, dirt seems to work better, so dirt it is. The beginning of the fire is always so peaceful and relaxed, hard to imagine the energy that the fire will become. Make good pots ~Craig
We keep loading the kiln. I always think that we have more than enough pots, but they all seem to fit in the kiln. One more tier to go and then we start to load the second chamber. The weather continues to be better than nice, hard to imagine that there was three feet of snow on the ground only a month ago.
This last week has just been one of great weather and has been fun to get out from under the winter and load the kiln. Leona and I plan to have the kiln all loaded and ready to fire in two more days. I took a couple of pics of wadding and stacking some small plates. The plates are glazed with a couple of different shinos. The shells leave nice marks and the shino records the flame well. For now Make good pots ~Craig