From this situation, sand was shovelled as required into the steel moulding boxes, a hand sieve being used for the sand actually covering the moulding plate , to ensure the best surface of sand near the mould cavity. When moulds had been filled and rammed tightly with a hand held 'rammer' they would be placed in a row side by side, ready to be 'poured'.
This operation of 'moulding ,' using the moulding plates and boxes, was the 'workface' of the whole operation; If there was going to be any carelessness, all the previous and casting work was not only wasted but caused extra work for everyone.
There was a number on each mould, so if there was a flaw or fault with a particular mould, it could be identified to ascertain which one was wrong.
The sand had to be examined in case it was not properly compacted.
The actual 'short run' casting had to be cleaned and remelted, which all took extra time and tended to cause bad feeling and short tempers through the workplace.
Some times 'fuses' were a bit short, especially if there was a 'deadline' to work to , which was often the case . 'Get it right first time!' had a real meaning in this department as well as others!
One experienced man could be expected to make up about 40-50 boxes a day, depending of course, on the type and size of the moulds.
Barry was a moulder who had plenty of experience. His workmates found by gentle teasing they could extend his production by kidding him into races.
One day Barry reckoned he could do 100 boxes a day ! Nobody thought he could ever reach that figure, and encouraged him to try. At the end of the day there were 100 boxes done, and a triumphant moulder was escorted by his workmates to celebrate the occasion 'down town'!
The same delightful character was once caught in the local pub kitchen, after hours, during a Police raid. Rather the worse for wear, he was hiding in the cupboard under the sink. When the local Constabulary opened the cupboard door and saw him tightly contorted in the cupboard he said in a booming voice "Aha! what have we got here?" Back came the slurred and muffled answer " I'm the plumber of course !" Barry's great sense of humour got him out of quite a few awkward corners...