Foundry work-3

The foundry was modern and worked mainly in aluminum with the occasional foray into bronze or brass. I was clean and well ventilated. I mention this because after this foundry closed I found a job in another foundry. Iron and old hat. The hot metal was poured by hand and the place existed on one floor with sand an dust everywhere. Outside was a giant pile of iron-bathtubs, old cars, junk of all sort. But that’s another story.

One thing that was common in both foundries was the Furnaceman. He had to work near stupendous heat all day long. Starting work he would put on his work clothes. They were, from the start,  burnt and torn with splashes of metal. Skinny and undernourished it affected his mind as well. The furnace men that I worked with were always on the edge of lunacy. Sometimes this came out as anger (nobody would challenge a furnace man) but mostly non-stop talking. Sentences that didn’t make any sense.

To some of the workers there I was known as the boss’s kid and they resented that. They tried to trip me up whenever possible. After I started working in the machine shop they’re opportunities almost disappeared. However, at lunch I was the recipient of endless jibes. It got quite tiresome. Once when we ran out of work machining I was detailed to work with these guys making molds. As I said before, the sand came from up above and all you had to do was shake it into the molds. The molds were pretty simple. You filled two halves, one bottom, one top, and put the facsimile between them. then you pressed the two halves together with a kind of hydraulic machine. You opened them, removed the object and sprayed the tops of both halves with something that would harden. These were left to dry for an hour or so before the metal was poured.