Tuesday, March 19, 2013

The new project begins

The new project "The Discovery" has begun.  Some of the stones are much larger than their final form.  They are carefully measured and then large areas will be split off.  One technique for removing large areas of stone is by drilling holes and then hammering feather and wedges into the stone to split off a large section.  The holes are made with a hammerdrill. Each hole is about 16" deep
 This block will be one of the arms of the giant reclining woman.
 This block will become the right leg and foot.  The flattened area will be the bottom of the piece.
 The block of stone pictured above will be the head of "The Discovery".  The front corners need to be removed and for that, the hydraulic power unit and the hydraulic chainsaw come into play.  The saw (sitting on top of the stone) can cut 18" into the stone.  Careful measurements from the model head were made.  These measurements showed were corners could be safely removed from the stone. The lines for the cuts were first marked with crayon (see earlier post) and then an angle grinder.
 The chainsaw has made it's cuts.  After the corners were cut all around - each side and then from the top, wedges are inserted into the cut.
 The wedges are placed in the side and top of the stone.  The ideal place for the stone to fall is straight in front of the block. That is why the wedges are being struck on the left side instead of the right, I want the stone to fall forward.  Let's hope it does...
 The wedges are hammered into the stone. As the wedges are hammered deeper into the stone the sound changes, each time the hammer hits the there is a pinging sound.  That sound changes the deeper the wedges are driven into the stone until there is a dull sound when the wedges are struck, that signifies a crack has been made and it won't be long until the rock splits off...
 I switched over to a sledge hammer, the small hammer didn't have enough power.
 It is a nice, cleanly split stone, some day it will become a sculpture.
 I set the wedges and hammer them in to take out the next corner....

Catrina pretends she is a mighty lionness. The deer don't appear disturbed...

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