Enlarging Ceramics

Should we find ourselves staying on Douglas for the foreseeable future, I’d like to offer a way to modestly increase space in the ceramics area. While this isn’t exactly up to me, maybe we can get all the right people on board.

Here’s how…
The ERP could stand a little optimization (read: plenty of crap to get rid of) and orderliness. The big benches running lengthwise in there could be turned to firewood/soapbox derby cars. The main bench (and perhaps another proper one in the future) could be moved against a wall. The Tormach and its associated tools and parts can be moved in if it can be made to fit through the door. I AM NOT TRYING TO CLAIM ANY AUTHORITY OVER CNC!!! Whoever is currently in charge (Jimmy?) would remain so. If that’s to happen, then the wall that’s currently behind the Tormach can be extended further into that area.

I think it’s only fair that areas which have demonstrated the need for more space get it. I’m willing to fork over some land on “my” little island to make it happen in a sensible way. Just something for the appropriate parties to consider.


Just tagging @ScottS and @pwhutchi to be sure they see this and to get their input.

Oh, yeah! I was meaning to do that!

@Mark.S That is quite an innovative idea. It is a well thought plan and the ceramic department appreciates that greatly. I would also like to get input from Josh @heathenfire79, the metal shop lead as this would also impact the metal shop area. Thank you!!!

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One concern I have is that the Tormach requires an air compressor attached for clean out functions.
I am completely for helping generate a bit more space for the ceramics.
We had talked in the past about moving the Tormach to where the small lathe is currently
and letting Ceramics use that area for the Kiln but we did not want the extra heat in the metal shop that pug mill thou might could live out there?

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Reading up on air requirements, the power drawbar doesn’t use much (depends on the frequency of tool changes). The fogbuster is continuous but I’ve read that people get away with using airbrush pumps, so CFM and pressure requirements aren’t too high. Quiet compressors with sufficient specs can be had for around $200.

The door to the ERP isn’t wide enough, and it might be difficult to navigate around the corner, but given that the ERP wall along the hallway is plywood on a 2x4 frame, we can take care of that easy enough.

If the pug mill, kiln and maybe some other stuff gets moved into that area, partially enclosing it and venting out the boarded up window that’s there could alleviate the issue of heat in the metalshop.

Just some ideas.

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I am not really in favor of investing any modifications or money into the current space.
I think enclosing that area in a safe manor that would hold up to the heat of a kiln would be costly.

If we could do it in a way that would not cost money as a temporary get them space till we get out of that building I would be completely on board with the labor to move machines around.

I would think the pug mill and kiln being near each other would be a bad idea as the heat from the kiln might dry the clay in the pug mill but other clay working stuff might be able to go in that corner.

I have a safety class tonight I will do some measuring to see what kind of space I could consolidate with equipment relocation and if that can be an option.

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I don’t see any problem with providing Ceramics with 4 wheels no matter what else we do.


This idea of moving the Tormach, rearranging in the metal shop to accommodate this, has been discussed before. There’s certainly room in that space to make a small kiln room and increase the available room in ceramics for more wheels and shelving to accommodate larger classes.

If for some reason we did end up having to stay in the current building for a lot longer then I think we should definitely draw this idea up and run with it.

I know this is kind of a crazy idea… but for a long term solution, could we build a loft above the Tormach?

  1. build a loft over to the welding curtain
  2. move electronics up there (would have to wall off the top of the loft)
  3. move emco mill, logan lathe, and craftsman lathe into the ERP
  4. move kiln and storage stuff under the loft by the welding curtain where the mill and lathes currently are
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