Saturday. July 28 , ‘18
As we suspected, on Sat. morning when I opened the flask, the sand was very soft and useless as a mold! Time to start over. I decided to leave the bad section of sand in place to help divide the mold into sections , replaced the flask and set it up to ram another section of the mold. Kurt switched to the new chemicals and we were ready to try again. David Marquez joined me with a pattern of his and we were the first to start sand molds. The new chemicals seemed much better right away so when Wendy brought her pattern in we got her mold underway as well.
Later in the day a young German lad, Peter Schwieger arrived and I helped him get his pattern started too. We had a good chance to get to know each other and discover common interest and a bit of our personal stories. Peter was enthustiac about the Lodestone Project and told me that he has a friend in Karlsruhe who is a member of a group that does ‘secret’ art projects. Peter said that he would try to contact his friend and would tell him about what I want to do and suggested that the group had plenty of experience about informal art activities and probably knew ideal places to site the memorial Lodestone for Bill! This was a very welcome and encouraging prospect for me and lifted my spirits greatly. Peter also volunteered to assist me in navigating the German train system in order to facilitate my getting the Lodestone from here to Karlsruhe .
Hans warned us that a front was approaching with strong thunderstorms and he was correct. We had pretty strong winds and a good deal of rain which cooled things down quite a bit. David, Michael, Luke and I all worked on the Cupola. We mixed the refractory and cast a new lid, patched the liner and rebuilt the tap hope. All she needs now is to have the new refractory cured at a low temp. and she will be ready to roll!