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Metal Pour'  iron pour  Valentines Metal Pour


Join Minnesota iron artists for a fire and ice event for 2017

Participate in the process by creating a scratch block, or grab your sweetheart for a unique day out

 

Valentines Day Hot Metal Pour: Saturday February 11, 2017, Noon - 5pm, FREE
Scratch Block Workshops: January 28, 29 and February 4 and 5, 10am-1pm or 2pm-5pm

Mold Prices: $30/small, $45/medium $75/large


Each winter, Minnesota artists crawl out of hibernation and join Franconia for an outdoor iron pour. The event is an invigorating mix of fire and ice. We invite you to join in this unique opportunity by scratching a block of sand that will be poured with molten iron, creating your very own iron sculpture at the Valentine’s Day Hot Metal Pour.

To make a scratch block, you will want to attend one of our scratch block workshops. Watch the scratch block video to learn about the process. Workshops are free with the purchase of a sand mold. Then whether or not you made a scratch block, make sure to come to the park on February 11th with your loved ones and some hot cocoa for a special event totally worth braving the cold for. You can warm your hands by the fire or on your freshly poured sculpture! We will offer two behind the scenes tours so you can understand the process of casting iron on a deeper level as well as a Q & A booth with participating iron artists!

Thank you for your enthusiastic response in participating in our scratch block workshops! We are currently sold out of scratch blocks! However-- ALL are welcome at the Valentine's Hot Metal Pour on February 11th from 12-5pm and please check back for more scratch block workshops in July! 





Scratch Block Process from Franconia Sculpture Park on Vimeo.




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What Happens at an Iron Pour?
The iron artists at Franconia create a three-dimensional (positive) sculpture form. This sculpture can be made from disposable and varied materials because it is not permanent. It is used as a form to create negative space in a sand mold.

Sand is built up around the temporary sculpture with the aid of wood or other types of supports to create one mold, or many sections of one mold. Often times these molds have as many as twenty parts, and can weigh up to 2,000 pounds. When the sand mold is complete, the temporary sculpture is removed from the resin hardened sand mold, the sand pieces are reassemble, thus making the negative space (void) for the hot iron. If you created a scratch block mold, the negative space is created by carving designs into a already made block of sand.

The iron cupola (furnace) is then fired up to 2,700°F using coke, a derivative of coal, to fuel the furnace. Iron is then slowly loaded into the top of the cupola to create a reservoir of molten iron that is ready to pour. Up to 8,000 pounds of red-hot molten iron will be poured throughout the day.


The pour team carefully fills each mold with a preheated ladle. The team also pours liquid iron into all of the scratch block sculpture molds made by community members. It is an exciting and hot event! If you would like to create a Scratch Block Sand Mold that will be cast on during the Valentines Day Pour, please visit our registration page.

When the molds are full, the cooling process begins. Scratch blocks are placed into a quenching buckets to help with the cooling process. Once cool, Franconia staff will break the sand away, revealing a cast iron positive replica of the negative space you carved into your block of sand. Franconia staff will the chase your sculpture, a process that involves grinding and brushing away any sharp edges and sand debris.

At this point your sculpture is complete. You can pick up your cast iron sculpture and take it home with you. Please keep in mind that the process of pouring each mold, allowing for the iron to cool, and cleaning each sculpture is a time consuming process. It is a possibility that your sculpture will not be ready until very late in the day. If you are unable to wait for your sculpture to be finished, it will be available for you to pick up at Franconia’s office.

How do I participate?
You can try your hand at mold making by scratching a design into resin hardened sand. Watch the video to get a better understanding of all the steps involved in creating a resin hardened sand mold.

Then head to our registration page to purchase your sand mold, select a workshop date, and let Franconia know how many people will be attending the workshop.

At the workshop, Franconia staff will be around to show you the basic scratching techniques and to answer questions throughout the process. You must be present one hour before workshop ends to account for time to complete your sand mold. Contact the Franconia office if you have any questions. info@franconia.org or 651-257-6668.
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sponsor This activity is made possible by the voters of Minnesota through a grant from the East Central Regional Arts Council thanks to a legislative appropriation from the Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund.
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