Sunday, August 14, 2011

Iron Pour

I've been meaning to write about this for a few weeks now and never seemed to get it done (just part of a long list. Well now I am...

Back in July, the Lanesboro Art Center sponsored an Iron Pour thanks to a Legacy grant and the expertise of Karl Unnasch. I was fortunate to be able to participate in the Iron Pour and here are some photos of the event and the piece I made. Originally, I'd hoped to make something to be the counter weight for my kiln door, but to simplify the event, they had pre-made mold blanks to a standard 6" round size. Not big enough for the kiln door but I still wanted to participate.

First we carved our design in molds made from sand and resin.

A couple days later, everyone's molds were placed in Sylvan Park around the furnace that would melt the scrap iron to become our plaques.

When the i
ron was melted, it was drained from the furnace into a bucket like thing with handles on both sides. Two people carried the molten iron to a line of mold and poured the iron from the bucket into the hole in the top of the molds. The entire process is super hot, they have to wear heavy protective equipment to prevent burns and to top it off it was in the mid-90s that day.

A day later the pieces had cooled enough to be opened up. They look a little rough with sand stuck to them and sharp edges. That is quickly fixed with a wire brush to remove the sand and a grinder to smooth the edges.

Last, they are polished with stove oil so they don't rust.

Here's my finished piece. Clearly, I'm not very talent when it comes to carving, but the event was so much fun. I sure hope they have this event again next year.


Gina Toso said...


I purchased one of your mugs in Lanesboro this weekend and wanted to say thank you for making such a beautiful piece!! I have a collection at home and I like to keep the artist info with the pieces. Unfortunately, the Local Market did not have any info on you. Do you have a card or anything? If so, let me know. If you could send me anything, that would be even better. When people come to my home, they see the pottery I have and they can also see WHO made the pieces. :)

Gina Toso
14600 Biscayne Way W.
Rosemount, MN 5068

Sue Pariseau Pottery said...

Blogger love getting comments on their posts and comments like this are golden. Thanks Gina. Hope you enjoy the mug and had a great time in Lanesboro. I'll get a card and some info off to you soon. Be well.

Marcia Paul said...

Hi Sue -- Your Iron-Pour looks like fun (and during our almost hottest July ever!). Hope you're enjoying everything else about Lanesboro now that we've cooled down a bit.
From Marcia Paul