Monday, September 3, 2012

What did we do before the internet?

I for one, probably read more books and wasted less time, but this weekend Jeff and I were very thankful for the internet.

Saturday we sanded pots and loaded the bisque kiln in preparation to fire it on Sunday. As usual, we had some pots that weren't completely dry so Jeff wanted to turn it on low for a couple of hours. He turned the switch to on and nothing happened. He checked the breaker and it was in the on position, yet it didn't appear there was any electricity running into the kiln. The timer on the kiln sitter wasn't even working. Before the last firing Jeff had replaced the plug and prior to leaving for NH he unplugged the kiln. We don't own a tester for electrical outlets and it's not like we had anything else that runs on 240 that we could plug into to see if it was working. After fiddling around a bit Jeff finally saw a spark on the kiln sitter, so it appeared we did have electricity.

This kiln is a very old manual L&L...

Once it was determined that there was electricity going into the kiln, Jeff knew that the problem was in the kiln sitter box. He went on line and read that sometimes crud gets on the contacts and needs to be cleaned off. He took the box apart, cleaned them, and when it was re-assembled we had power!

If it wasn't for the good ol' internet we would have had to wait for the next work day to call L&L. Since this was a holiday weekend, that would have meant waiting until Tuesday to fix and fire this thing.
While the kiln was firing yesterday, Jeff went to load pots in David's anagama, and I threw some bowls and assembled these...
only 30 more to go... guess you know what I will be doing today.

Happy Labor Day!


  1. When I worked at the Artscenter in Carrboro, we had an L&L like yours. They are workhorses, you just can't kill them. I remember when we first got internet, it was dial up and I had no patience at all for it. I never embraced it until we got a faster service. In the early 90's I just didn't get what the internet was for. Now I don't know what it's not for, haha!

  2. I only really started using the internet and computers in general about three or four years ago. Now I can't imagine being without my trusty little MacBook.
    We had Skutts at my old co-op and they were equally difficult to kill. In fact when we got new ones members bought the old ones. Electric kilns just keep going!
    Enjoy Labor Day...with a little time off from labor?!
    Like the Pig Pile!

  3. I'm trying to get all my internet work done in the morning and then shut it off, I type my posts at night though. Are your pigs larger this time? they look so wonderful

    The same thing happened to my old Skutt kiln in california and I just got the spider webs out and it started working again, it was over 25 years old, I sold it when I got here, now i have a newer one which I love. I wanted to get an L&L but price held me back from that one.

  4. Tracey - This kiln has been great and it was FREE! I had no patience during the dial up days either. I even cancelled my service until DSL came to the rural town I was living in.

    Smartcat... we won't be taking a break from labor today... those pigs need to get finished up! Jeff is smoking a pork shoulder today so we will have barbecue for dinner, always a special treat.

    Linda, the pigs are a little bigger than they used to be, but the close up, butt shot probably is deceiving :-)

  5. It's really comforting to know that the internet is here to help us fix the things that are broken, unless of course it's the internet that has gone down.
    I just used it to help diagnose a vehicle problem, it's nice to be able to play mechanic without getting my hands scratched and dirty.


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