Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Circle City Copperworks

Have you dreamed of a custom made copper range hood or maybe a copper farmhouse sink? I'm not ashamed to admit I have. And you know what? I touched one today. And you know what else? Within minutes of me touching it the germs I left on it were dead. Deader than a doornail. You know why? Because copper itself is an antimicrobial surface that naturally kills bacteria. Cool, huh?

Today our homeschool group toured Circle City Copperworks. A company in Indianapolis that manufactures unique one-of-a-kind copper sinks, countertops, range hoods, cupolas, finials and spires. I think everyone needs a spire. The bathtub below can be yours for a mere $10,000. Or you can custom order a cookie cutter in the shape of the Colts emblem. They do it all. And they do it extremely well.

We learned how it all starts out mined from rocks like these.

To how it's shaped and finished.

And three or four days worth of work later, a master coppersmith like Dan here, can make a range hood like the one behind him. It is unbelievably beautiful in real life. My first born should have been nervous while I was contemplating how I could ever acquire such a beautiful thing.

Dan gave an absolutely fabulous tour of their impressive shop. It was fun, educational and extremely interesting. It was really surprising to see that not all that much has changed over the years. Oh sure, he showed us the fancy laser cutting machine attached to the computer. But he also said it takes so much time to design something on the computer they often just do it by hand, given they're usually only making one of whatever it is. The fancy computer sits right next to some shaping tools that are over 100 years old. You wouldn't believe what he can do with just a hammer and a stump.

In the end, no question went unanswered. The kids really enjoyed it and learned some valuable life lessons along the way. The importance of studying geometry for instance. It was a great hands on learning kind of day. And learning from someone so passionate about their work, always makes it exciting. Thanks, Dan. As soon as I win the lottery I'll be back for that tub!


Carol said...

What fun and how interesting to learn that it kills germs. I never knew that.

Jayne said...

That would've been a fun trip. These days, with all the copper theft, I bet that building's locked up at night like Fort Knox.

Laurie Kruczek said...

I was thinking the same thing as Jayne! I was going to do a copper mailbox out front, but then changed my mind really quickly. I had visions of my identity as well as the box being stolen. But yeah, those bathtubs are SWEET!

Christine said...

Yeah, they barely have any signage outside their building so you can even find the place. He said all the theft is good for his business though as he makes things to replace stolen items all the time!

Milah said...

My kids hammered out a couple of copper christmas ornaments years ago at the State Fair. I still use them, but don't tell anyone cause I don't want to be robbed.

I would have enjoyed that tour. That germ thing was news to me!

Megan :) said...

Nice to know that I could have been replaced by a stove hood mom. Nice real nice. Just remember that It is I, the first born that gets to choose your nursing home!!!!!

:) Meg

Christopher Busta-Peck said...

It's always fun to watch master craftsmen at work. Metalwork is especially interesting - I'm always amazed at how they're able to shape and fit things. That's the only reason why I spend so much time watching the progress in the shop over at Classic Jaguar - it's fun to watch them cut away all the rust and decay and shape the metal back to what it is supposed to be.

Jennifer said...

How neat! Thanks for sharing.

RazorFamilyFarms.com said...

How neat! What a great craft!



The Farm House Kids said...

I bet you all had fun.

Copper sink, eh?? Hmmm, I think I would love that. I'm still debating on changing up to a farmhouse sink while MM is debating on the cheapest and quickest way out of this kitchen project.