Dan Finnegan flew from Boston last week, leaving Kim Medeiros and me here on Cape Cod, contemplating the kiln design discussion we had with him over 48 hours. (Oh, and we had a pretty damn good vegetarian potluck dinner party here with a number of local potters, many of them already FOFs ... Friends of Finnegan.)
Kim and I were left with some immediate homework: First, find wood. I mean, it seems like a given, but finding appropriate fuel for the kiln is a fairly crucial first step. Fortunately, I've lived here long enough to know the kind of people who know those kinds of people. That means we've got a line of a couple of sawmills not far from the Cape who create lots and lots of pine offcuts. OK, that's a start.
We also need the shelves around which the kiln will be built. Our initial decision is to use 14x28-inch shelves, configured to basically create a square and, vertically, a cube. We know we can buy the shelves new, but we're on the lookout for used silicon carbide. Anyone know of any? We'll travel to pick up, within reason. Lemme know.
The same goes for brick. I have about 800 used soft and hard brick, but we think most of the hard brick will go into the chimney. Again, we'll probably buy new, but are not averse to saving money. Lemme know.
After talking kiln with Dan for about two days, what we came up with - perhaps not remarkably - will look a lot like a single-chamber version of his two-chamber kiln outside Fredericksburg. A photo of that kiln is attached, as is one of Dan in consult mode. Dan led us through options for capacity, arch, firebox, etc. and something like this really seems to do what we want it to. Big enough to fire with others, not so big that one or the other of us couldn't do a single big firing if need be.
So, we're on the trail of all the details that need to be done before the planned June start date. Anyone who has advice, feel free.