After 23 years of continued use we finally retired our well loved old furnace and built a brand new furnace in its place. Check out our photo journal of this monumental renewal undertaking.
The team started the process by removing all the remaining molten glass from the 800 pound capacity crucible. This was grueling work but satisfying to watch as Chris poured ladle after ladle of hot glass into large metal pots, partially filled with water. The molten glass reacted in different ways with the water depending on the increasingly rising temperature of the water in the pots. Often large glass bubbles would form on the surface of the water and in one instance and a small hole formed in the bottom of the boiling hot pot from the intense heat.
This glass purging process serves two purposes. First, it allows us to remove the remaining glass to ease in the deconstruction of the crucible after it has cooled. Second, when the new furnace is complete we will re-use the salvaged glass or cullet for the first re-charge because it’s melting point is much lower than virgin glass batch. The cullet serves as a means to clean and coat the inside of the newly built furnace and will be replaced by fresh batch for new glass making
If you look closely you can see where over two decades of daily use has taken its toll on the outer shell as well as the insides of the crucible. There are visible cracks that effect the efficiency of the furnace over time.
Enjoy this time-lapse of the entire process