Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Welding, Grinding, Polishing, Welding

All nine individual forms that make up the sculpture have been plasma cut, glued, welded, ground and polished. The process was very much like making nine individual sculptures. Combined, they represent a football field length of welding, and twice that of grinding and polishing. The surface of each has been worked with abrasives, starting with aggressive ones to remove the weld slag, and gradually moving to finer and finer abrasives until the entire surface of each has a uniform, glowing satin finish. It is painstaking, labor intensive work, and Rob is incredibly grateful to his friend Andrew Wilson for volunteering many of his hours to help with the polishing process. Two of the completed forms are shown here on the studio floor:

Scaffolding has been set up around the sculptural base, and Rob is welding the individual pieces together. The cooler fall air and lower humidity makes for a much nicer outdoor work environment.

One can begin to get a feeling for the scale of the sculpture. Rob is on schedule to have the welding done by the end of this week, so the sculpture can be removed from the base, and the base transported to the Gardiner Waterfront Park to be wired for lighting and filled with concrete.

After the base is removed, Rob will work on the sculpture at his studio, to remove any excess welding material that is visible, and re-polish around each welded joining point. The photograph below shows the sculpture with six forms assembled, leaving only three more to go.

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