Yesterday, I stopped by the nearby distributor of Skutt kilns, Minnesota Clay, and spoke with one of the helpful staff there who also run around and repair kilns for people. He said that it would be pretty inexpensive to replace the 208V components with 240V components and run the kiln on single phase power. This is fortunate, but I had already found a place that describes how to build your own rotary phase converter. I was in the process of trying to find sources for all the components I would need. It will be cheaper to convert it to run on single phase power. The picture to the left is what my kiln would look like brand new.
I also picked up 150lbs of clay. 50lbs of White Eathenware, 50lbs of Rainy Lake, and 50lbs of miscellaneous pug mill left overs for practice and experimentation. When I got it home the boys wanted to make some little animals with clay, so I broke out some of the cheap pug mill left overs. Christian and I made a nice little dog, and Rane made some space marines and a tank.
The experimental clay is very hard to work with, but as I explained to the boys as I was trying to throw this last night, "Sometimes the clay tells you that it doesn't want to be a pretty pot." And, "In art, there are sometimes mistakes, but more often happy accidents." I liked how this pot wanted to be more organic, and it reminded me of something I would see in the woods so I left it this way.
I have some "pretty" ones too, which I will post once they are baked.