[Clayart] books etc/long

vincepitelka at gmail.com vincepitelka at gmail.com
Sat Mar 11 23:58:17 UTC 2023

Mel wrote:
"When I started working on the kiln book, Tony Clennell said to me...."I think you may be too late to write a kiln book, in a couple of years no one will be firing with gas or wood. It will be all electric."  And, of course he was correct.  Building a home gas kiln is out of fashion. And, only the young and hardy will even think wood."

Hi Mel - 
I beg to differ.  There are still plenty of potters building kilns and firing with gas or wood.  Just within my little Chatham Artists Guild, we have quite a few potters firing with wood or gas, including several soda-firing in addition to myself.  I do think we need to move away from fossil-fuels or anything that contributes carbon to the atmosphere, but that will be difficult as long as most electricity is generated by coal, oil, or natural gas.  Electric is easy and convenient, and MC6G taught people how to get great results from electric firing, but until we really convert to renewable energy, electric is not the solution.
- Vince

Vince Pitelka
Potter, Writer, Teacher
Chapel Hill, NC
vpitelka at dtccom.net

-----Original Message-----
From: Clayart <clayart-bounces at lists.clayartworld.com> On Behalf Of Kelly Savino
Sent: Saturday, March 11, 2023 6:17 PM
To: clayart at lists.clayartworld.com
Subject: Re: [Clayart] books etc/long

On Thu, 23 Feb, 2023 at 1:56 PM, mel jacobson <melpots at mail.com> wrote:


Mel, your friend Diana Pancioli taught me how to build a gas kiln. We fired her little salt and soda cats with propane but mine at the lake is hooked up to natural gas. It's just a cubic yard inside, but I built it myself (kids and hubby helped hand me bricks) and it's braced with angle iron and threaded rods. Dug out squares of sod like cutting out brownies, rented a baby cement mixer for the foundation. Stacked bricks on the wooden arch while my grandma sat in the shade with lemonade and critiqued. 

I fire it by myself - (a treat, after group firings w fellow grad students). So I can break all the rules and if I ruin the pots they are mine to ruin. 

The two biggest problems I have are potters wasps making nests in the burner ports and chipmunks filling the thing with acorns in the off season. I once left it for a week between firing and unloading and found one of my teapots full of acorns. 

And once I used outdated oat bran to mix into my wadding, came back a day later to brick up the front and discovered all my pots tipped, the wads nibbled to bits and field mouse and chipmunk poop everywhere. 

I also have to carefully evict tree frogs from the burner ports. 

But I fire with owls hooting at night and sandhill cranes calling in early morning.. It's all good. 

Hi to the old gang, from Kelly in Ohio (formerly known as primalmommy)
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