The Foundry in the Silo

The Foundry in the Silo

Due to the length of time between this blog post and the last one (last year!), it has become very evident that I cannot do two things at one seems that multitasking is NOT my strong suit.


So, we're applying a little bit of technology in order to get blog posts out in a timely manner. There is an AI feature within Shopify that allows me to input blog material into a calendar that will then send blog posts out when we want them to go...who knew? I should say "who"?, other than ANYONE who is younger than me.

Well, now that we figured that out, I'm going to catch you up on what we've done so far with our silo over the last (almost) year. It was basically an empty shell with an old grain auger, lots of pigeon poo and 5 generations of pigeons, creators of said pigeon poo.

Metal grain silo before reclamation

This is what the outside looked like before we started. We decided to cut a 4' x 7' metal rollup door into the side so that we could fit the inside with all of the needed tooling to not only sandcast and pour our own bronze, but also the equipment needed to finish the material, including welders, hand tools, drill presses, sanders and the sand blaster. Basically, anything that has to do with creating and finishing metal now happens in the silo. The actual product finish is applied inside a room that we retrofit within one of the Elevator cribs. I'll show you that in another post.

Cutting the hole for the roll up door

After creating the opening, we were able to get rid of all of the birds, the stuff they left behind, and the old piping and augers. 

Removing the auger from the grain silo

Grain silo refuse cleanup

After filling in the hole that held the bottom end of the grain auger, we were able to move all of our needed equipment into the new space that was created, splitting that space into one side for the actual foundry itself and then the metal finish side. So far, it has worked out quite well!

The foundry side of the reclaimed silo space

If you look straight on into either of these last two pictures, you'll see a ladder leaning against that wall. I'm going to cut another door into that side of the silo which will lead into the Elevator and into the room where we do the actual patina work on each product. I'll show that in a future post. 

We have so many things happening here. Stay tuned as Beth, her cousin, Leslie and our good friend Kristy have started a pottery studio in the front end of the Elevator. Beth is working on learning how to do slip, Leslie works with slab pottery and Kristy is a genius on the pottery wheel. They're going to open the space up in the future for people to come and learn. And if you're wine fans, there may be some of that included too.

I built a "pass through" between the Elevator and the silo, created a new finish/shipping room in the bottom level of one of the grain cribs in the Elevator, and am now working on jacking up the old warehouse to bring it back to level. OH, and we have new product offerings that your going to want to see...

I set the AI thing to send out blog posts on Tuesdays and Thursdays of each week. Please comment. We'd love to hear from you!

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1 comment

Looks like you’ve got yourself a big project that’s going to produce lasting rewards for you.

Thanks for posting!

Doug O’Brien

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