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Archive for April, 2010

I brought my compressor down to the yard. Now I can clean the dust off the stone. Once cleaned, the black of the fresh limestone can be seen contrasting against the grey of the stalks (cut limstone).  This is a very rough indication of the final look of the piece.

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I finally got someone to take a few photos of me at work.

My helper doesn’t look happy

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I spoke too soon. Winter arrived back with full vengeance with raging storms, icy winds, rain, hail and snow.  I was very glad to have moved the stone into the barn where, I at least got some shelter (not much!). The shape of the cherries orbs have advanced greatly now I was able to remove the corners.

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The Big Move

As can be seen from the last post, the twin cherries block is half in and half out of the barn (see stone delivery post).  In this position, there is little protection from the weather, in fact it couldn’t be worst, as the guttering on the barn is non-existent and all the water from the barn pours straight down onto the stone and me!!!  Also, I needed to start taking the corners from the bottom of the stone and I couldn’t do this without tilting the stone. I felt I had taken enough off the top to substantially lighten the block so, it was time to attempt to move it!

So, my “Mentor” and “technical advisor” Eileen MacDonagh arrived on Friday afternoon of the 27th March with some straps and a block and tackle to move the large block. We first made a kind of rail track with wood to winch the stone along. We lifted the block with the lorry jack (Eileen had already lent me) and inserted scaffold poles (previously cut to length) under it, to roll it on.

Wooden rail track                                                        Block and tackle

We decided not to bother with the block and tackle and Eileen pulled it in manually!!!!!!!!!

Only joking! But it was amazing how easily it did move once we were all set up. We used one of the pillars of the barn to pull off and had to lift the block every so often to reset the scaffold poles.

The block in motion!

Once moved into the barn, we then embarked on tilting it over so, I could work on the underside of the block and take off the lower corners. We did this by lifting the block in stages with the lorry jack and supporting it at each stage with wooden wedges.

Job Done! Knackered!!                                  Checking stability

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The big block of stone is finally taking shape and the orbs of the proposed cherries are begining to form

Spring finally arrived this week. There was a bit of warmth in the sun and that icy NE wind had finally swung to the SW. Everything has been so brown, suddenly the Daffs appeared and the fields started turning green.

My neighbours the rook busy nesting across the field must have been glad of the change in weather.  I also have pigeon nesting in the barn with me (just above the single cherry). The chicks have hatched ont. I don’t know how they put up with the noise I make with the angle-grinder and hammering.

Ribbing                                                          Shadows on the single Cherry

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