Clay digging

Hi there

Today is all about how to dig clay out of your garden ground and purifying it for art & crafts activity.

I had a few Yucca trees lying around in my garden. I don’t like to throw away plants, so I decided to plant them in remote part of the garden.

Also, at the time of my decision to plant the yucca trees, I did try to fit brass guard to one of my knife. It didn’t fit, so I decided to cast my own brass guard (on that in deferent post).

Anyway back to the clay, as soon as I started to dig hols for the trees  I notice significant clay lumps mixed with the soil that I dug. So,,, hey presto. I can make clay out of it and use it for the guard moulding. Clay1

My clay purifying process:

I began by sorting out the clay lumps from the rest of the soil and as the clay is sticky, that process is very easy.

Clay2   Clay3

Now I gave the clay lumps initial washing under running water.

Clay4   Clay5

Then I went and mixed the lumps with plenty of water to dissolve them  into the water.

Clay6

Now I sieved the clay slurry through coarse strainer and gradually reduced the mesh size of the strainer, until I got read of the entire small particle that is not clay (pebbles, gravel and organic maters).

Clay7   Clay8

Now you can pour the slurry to the widest trough that you can find, end place it in the hottest place in your property. The idea behind it, is to let the water evaporate to leave nice shiny clay.

Clay9

I did make mould for my knife guard, then I burn it in my wood burning stove for few hours, and the end result is not bad. It will be interesting to give the clay a proper burning in proprietary kiln to see the real quality of the clay. Maybe one day I get to it.

One last thing.

You can look at your local area Engineering Geology Map.

Untitled
something like that

That will give you clue in regard of clay presence in your garden.

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