Welcome to my blog. I will attempt to make it much more than just a pitiful list of the relentlessly mundane minutiae of my daily existence but if you feel that I have failed try to imagine all the stuff that I haven't posted.

Monday, 27 May 2013

The sun is shining and everything is beautiful

Yes, it's glorious to feel the sun on my pallid skin at last and spend some time outdoors, taking a break from blunging, sieving and stiffening various lower temperature clays that I have collected. I've started making from them but am reluctant to post images until the ideas have coalesced and a firing is imminent.
All my bricks are now trolleyed up the field to my kiln site and I've been able to take the corrugated iron off my kiln base and get working on it.

The three sections of the kiln are now visible - firebox, chamber and chimney. The most difficult thing has been allowing for the discrepancy in sizes of all the bricks I have been using. The base was made up predominantly of previously used 25mm thick heavies (that I got cheap about 10 years ago). It turns out they are shorter than 23mm in length, not by much but enough to cause a slight overhang with my lovely new clean bricks. The chimney section is all being built from other second hand heavies that are pretty variable too.

This image shows the firebox section interior, with hobs and a grate in the floor. All the new clean crisp edged bricks are now being laid dry (without mortar).

...and this is the chamber. On the right you can see the large open throat (with central pillar) towards the firebox, and to the left a chequered flue system to the base of the chimney.
More tomorrow, including making the arch former. The arch an side wall are 26 grade insulating bricks. Once I get that and the firebox finished I will measure up for the metalwork.....oh yes, and the roof.

Wednesday, 8 May 2013

To the floor

Making the most of this good weather and am interspersing preparing new clay bodies with more work on the kiln. Here it is....
......up to floor level in the chamber. Dinky little thing isn't it? The firebox has a slightly lower floor and I haven't put the grate bricks in yet. The chimney will have a slightly higher floor so front to back it's on a slight rise. Next thing is to build the small arch that will lead from the firebox to the chamber. I'm thinking of making a small catenary arch for that - three bricks wide so there's little restriction between the two. The plan has been rather fluid up until now, so I need to decide exactly what comes next, how I'm going to do it and how many more bricks I am going to need. I'm going to put an arch over the chamber instead of making it a top loader. It does mean that I will be unable to change the chamber height but also that I don't have to much around with kiln shelf lids or welding a steel frame for a fibreboard roof.

Friday, 3 May 2013

Laying down base

Well well - look at this first image. Blue sky! In Britain! I'd quite forgotten how beautiful it is.
I've laid down a 50mm concrete paver base on a bed of sand and set out the floor plan of this kiln.
It's slightly raised from front to back to allow for a grate in the firebox and a small rise to the chamber and then the chimney. As you can see it's quite a small kiln. Large enough to make it worthwhile firing but small enough to allow me to do frequent differing firings.
The corrugated iron arrived today so the next think is to extend the kiln shed.