Thursday, 14 January 2016

Copper Boiler

I decided to make a copper-boiler for the scullery - this was basically a pot (not often copper, because it was too expensive - but wrought iron instead) set into a concrete top set on a brick surround, with a fire underneath to heat the water. The water was usually ladled in - and when not needed, ladled out again. This copper boiler was used, obviously, for hot water - but also to cook in (boil and steam), and clean items in (including laundry). There was an 'air space' under the fire grate to allow the heat to circulate, and it was covered with a barrel-top (a circle of wood slats).
In a dairy larder/scullery, the copper boiler was used to heat the milk in when making cheese. Just a little bit of useless information there :)
I started of my boiler with 3 pieces of cardboard and a cut-up egg carton...
I smooched a bit of Liquid Sculpey over the basic carcass when it was built and then cut out some rectangles from Fimo clay. I actually made these rectangles - the 'bricks' - too large, and if I did another, I'd make these bricks a lot smaller. The Liquid Sculpey allowed the bricks to stick to the cardboard. I rolled out a thinner piece to sit over the top and shaped it into the rim of the bowl.
I took a risk making a cardboard carcass, but thought that as Fimo baked at such a low temperature, the cardboard wouldn't have time to burn. The wood glue I used in some of the carcass-making did brown - the paper glue (Scotch Quick Dry) didn't discolour at all.
After baking, I let it cool and then painted it with acrylic paints. After talking to Ms Lizzie, it was decided that whitewashed bricks would be more suitable than red brick.
I daubed the paint on because I'd rather have this effect than try and make everything look absolutely smooth and perfect - because it never does look perfect! The 'insides' of the boiler look a total mess - but nobody will see those when the boiler is installed into the scullery.
I was going to use black paint for the bowl, but changed my mind and used copper - well, it's brass coloured actually, because I didn't have any copper paint.
A small door knob and a hook-and-eye simple latch, and it's all ready - except the copper paint is so thick it will probably take a week to dry lol I have made the wooden top also - but I think it needs... 'tweaking' - so I'll photograph that later.
 I am pleased with how it has turned out - it looks just as good as the bought ones that cost at least £40 - and mine was made up with stuff I already had - and some Fimo oven dry clay that possibly cost less than £3.50.
I will probably do a little more painting, and I have a battery operated red glow light (£3) that I can hide inside the fire grate :)
Okay, so it took me a day to build and make - but still not a bad addition to my dolls house scullery, I think :)

1 comment:

misteejay said...

What a great achievement. It looks super.
Toni xx