Monday, October 17, 2005


Loading the kiln took over five hours and we didn't finish up till about 7pm Friday night. Tony actually did all the loading hunched over on his knees. I just handed him the shelves and the pots as called for.
The shelves were by far the heaviest of the work and careful placement on the stilts was critical. The placement of each new shelf brought moans, groans, and grunts out of the archway. Those shelves were heavy.
The kiln took a little longer than normal to load because of one problem piece. It was a tall vase form. The wads that were glued to the bottom of the vase made the piece too tall to fit on the top shelf. So, in and out of the kiln it was passed. Each time I would file a little bit off the wads and it seemed like it was never enough, but we finally got the vase loaded.
Finally loaded, the next step was to carefully and skillfully brick up the front of the kiln. There had to be a small stoke hole in the center and there also couldn't be any large gaps between any of the bricks and the arch. Soft brick was sawed and sanded to plug the larger gaps and ceramic fiber was used to seal the cracks. Once that was completed a layer of mud-type mortar was trowelled over the brick to completely seal the cracks between the brick.

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