search  current discussion  categories  kilns & firing - wood 


updated tue 29 oct 02


Paul Herman on mon 28 oct 02

Greetings Y'all,

Oooohhhh, I'm so tired! I've been trying to heal up my poor abused body
from the durn woodkiln. We finished it off after midnight on Saturday,
and not a minute too soon if you ask me. My firing partner Joe Winter
says he would like to go another half a day sometime, to make better
colors, but he'd better propose that one to me when I'm feeling rested,
and the memory of the exaustion has faded. He's younger than me and
right now obviously off his rocker.

I think the firing went quite well, though we haven't opened it yet. It
lasted 76 hours if you count the overnight propane stoking the first
night, 70 if you don't. Unbricking will be Wednesday morning. ^13 is
down in the front, top and bottom, and ^11 is down everywhere there was
one, even in the very back corner of the anagama chamber, so I guess
nothing will be underfired this time. We're still on a steep learning
curve, finding how to flatter and cajole the beast in a proper way. The
anagama is alway fussy (so far), but the salt chamber, a catenary arch,
is a piece of cake.

The crew was good, staying up both nights, bringing lots of food,
keeping the stokers awake and supplied with plenty of wood. As usual,
there were half a dozen cars of concerned citizens who saw the flames on
Saturday and came in off the highway to tell us we had one hell of a
chimney fire going up there. We thanked them and said "Yes we know about
the chimney, it's intentional, don't worry." Woodfirers love a good
chimney fire. A bright light in the darkness.

Joe's supposed to come over this evening to help me deal with the mess,
it looks like the Herlong landfill down there. I bet we get three or
four barrels for the dump. All of my cups are dirty.

I'll send one more report after unloading.


Paul Herman
Great Basin Pottery
423-725 Scott Road
Doyle, California 96109 US