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192 Jim Boone Rd
Bakersville, NC, 28705
United States


The central information hub for Michael Kline Pottery, a small one man shop of pottery making in the mountains of western North Carolina.

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The Best of Sawdust and Dirt

A record of the goings on around Michael Kline Pottery!

Filtering by Tag: poultry fountain

Baker's Dozen

Michael Kline

The emails are coming in with pictures of the days work, so far. Keep it up y'all. There are people out there who need good pots! Who are they going to call? I hope you! Be-ware, be ready!

Here's my entry for today. I had some fun with my slipware comb! Now it's lunch time and then more slip work this afternoon!

Michael Kline

This strange pot is evolving slowly.

I like the bell shape and will tweek the shape and placement of the "mouth" more after my trip. I'm heading over to see my "cousins" and will make stops in Shelby and Pittsboro along the way. So I won't be making...

But I'll bring my camera and let you know what everyone is up to. Check in later this week for the Seagrove report!

Hope you're getting the pots made or getting the pots that are being made. All for one and one for all!

Still Grey: Saturday

Michael Kline

I'm feeling much better and even managed to split a truckload of firewood. Unfortunately as I take a little break to pause and reflect and have a Saturday afternoon candy break with the girls, the cord wood is still in the truck. As our wood pile has been getting down to nothing, it's good to know that we have some wood ready to burn.

So, here are a couple of pictures of the pots I made last week! I tried to get over this cold ASAP and stayed in bed for two days and feel fine now! Usually I try to work through a cold but it tends to hang around longer as a result. Now I'm ready to head in there on Sunday and get back to pottery work.

As you can clearly see, these two pots were too dry to reshape. To create the reservoir where the chickens can peck their little heads in for a cool drink of water, I cut the pot with my fettling knife parallel to the base and push the side of the pot in. I think I should do this when the clay is still a little softer, d'ya think?

Then I add a little coil of clay to the lower "jaw" to bring it's height up a bit, thus creating a vacuum. Or is it a vacuum? Hmmm. I'll have ask Stacey's Uncle A.J. ( he worked on the space shuttle!!) He's my go-to scientist! (That is, if I can't get a hold of my other rocket scientist pottery neighbor...)

That's all for now.

Keep on turning...

Film @ 11

Michael Kline

Despite a sucky afternoon with an oncoming cold,
I managed to sort out the clay, clear the decks and make a few pots.

Ever since the recall of the chicken waterer, I've been painstakingly refilling my chicken's plastic water bowl. Now that it's warmed up the water isn't frozen 5 minutes after I bring it out! And!! Thanks to my neighbors Marissa and Lindsay, our rooster, Pavement, now has a girlfriend, unnamed at the moment. We hope they have a family! More about the happy couple later.

I'll sign off and hit the sack. Maybe I can fend off this cold with a good night's rest.

Recall On Poultry Fountains!

Michael Kline


In this first post of 2010 I have to report a recall* of poultry fountains/chicken waterers because of a flaw in the terms and use agreement. These devices are only good for temperatures above 32•F!



In all seriousness, though, this guy made it fine until the current cold snap. It got down to 10•F(-12.2•C) here last night. Metal may have been a better choice for this kind of weather. Recent studies have found that our thirst impulse is diminished when we are cold. So don't forget to drink plenty, even in cold weather! Our rooster, Mr. Pavement was glad to see some unfrozen water this morning after reading this article.

My poultry/pottery lesson for today is that you should bring this type of watering pot indoors during very cold temperatures and your Kline Pottery Poultry Fountain™ will last you more than a few chicken's lifetimes!

*not really

After Supper Pots

Michael Kline

[It's been a week since I predicted to Stacey that our 7 year old eMac would probably bite the dust, but here we are plugging away, albeit, slower than Christmas, a week later and the hard drive still making a squealing noise that makes the neighborhood hounds howl.]

In the shop tonight:

It was a scholarship night! I've been wanting to do some chicken watering pots for a while now, even before we had chickens, because there are such curious forms. After seeing Tom Turner's show at the Blue Spiral in Asheville, I was also struck by his almost closed forms and how they had a premium on surface. A closed form is all surface! So with the planets aligned and I went for it and failed a few times but hung in there. After a few hours I had a few "poultry fountains". Some of the smaller prototypes are based on some that I saw in the Isaac Button video and in books. I just guessed at how they might be made and went for it with marginal success. Some of the smaller jars are thrown and closed, then the "mouth" is cut and the jar pushed in to make room for the fowl to get their heads in their to drink. The taller forms will be accompanied by a saucer and will have a little hole (about an inch and a half in diameter) cut out at their base.
The water stays in the jar after it has been filled and turned right side up. The ledge of the the mouth or the saucer is slightly higher than the opening in the jar and the majority of the water is held inside the jar by gravity. When the birds drink the water out of the mouth of the jar or the saucer more water is released from the jar to maintain the level of water. I hope this makes sense. More on how this actually works ATF (after the firing), when I actually will be testing my results. Also, I will try to post more images of historical pots like the ones I am mimicking.
Also on the table tonight were some 8 # bowls that I threw earlier in the day and more of the mini-latte bowls.

It's late. More tomorrow.