P. Edronkin

Survival tips: making vessels for liquids and cooking (VI).



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2.1.1.5.11)- Clay:

This stuff has been widely used by many civilisations. Moreover: their history of more than one culture is defined by its pottery's styles and variations.

Clay can be employed along with hair, wool or chopped vegetal fibres in order to obtain a mix called 'adobe', for it Spanish name.

Adobe was used on Spanish colonies as we use cement today. Bricks were adhered together using this mix.

The main advantage of adobe is that it does not need to be cooked in any way, unlike most variations of clay. My own house, which was constructed on 1871 has no columns and all its walls were made using it. As I could see, it was placed between each brick exactly as masons put cement in today's houses.

Adobe, however, is not mechanically very resistant. It maintains bricks together but like limestone, it breaks apart easily if you hammer it, and also absorbs moisture if not well protected, albeit adobe is not so weak when attacked with acids, while limestone could even be dissolved in this way and sucha technique is used to clean fossils.

Thus, if you want to make clay pots, you would be better using the material in its pure state, without additives, and cook your pieces after shaping them.

To cook them, you would need to build up an oven, preferably out of stone or adobe. These ovens will serve you well in any camp or survivor's shelter for more uses like baking bread and preparing other meals.

Basically speaking, pottery consists in the following:

2.1.1.5.11.1)- Moulding or shaping.

2.1.1.5.11.2)- Polishing.

2.1.1.5.11.3)- Cooking the pot.

2.1.1.5.11.4)- Finishing.




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