Thursday, July 3, 2008

margaret, coffee mugs and home made bats

These are my home-made bats. Not by me, by my father. They are made with MDF, I gave my father the measurements and he gave me about 10 large bats with pin holes. Matt took two of them and carved out the tile inset spot. I had to refine it with a chisel and they fit well now. I have found that you don't want ANY wiggle room in bat pin holes or tile insets. You have to measure carefully, err on the side of too small and chisel away slowly to fit. They have held up well. They are about 6 years old and are now getting a bit wobbly, time for new ones soon.

Here it is with a tile inset. Remember to create a space at two corners to dig your finger or some other tool into to lift out the snug tile. They are just standard terra cotta wall tiles from the hardware store. I just looked for the cheapest box and made the tile inset accordingly.

One of the greatest tools ever invented for creating smooth, strong rims. This is a small square of plastic cut from a bag of clay. I have a lot which is good as they are always going missing. They are easy to replace. You use it by holding it in both hands, forming a hump that you run over the rim of the pot as it is spinning. It is a great tool!

I always use the same amound of clay and take measurements of height and width to assure that the forms are the same. Keeping in mind that this is handmade and nothing handmade is exactly the same. A large part of it's charm.

Finally a photo of Margaret. If anyone knows the true name of this tool, I would love to be enlightened. I will still call her Margaret, but will be better able to direct others in her purchase. Margaret is my tool of choice for trimming all I can from forms while they are still freshly thrown.


Patricia Griffin said...

Hi! Thanks for sharing the pics of your bat system. Very clever! How nice to have a handy dad... I use a bit of plastic to smooth rims too. Works better than anything else.

annewebb said...

I used the same bat system for years. Seems a few people have wised up since I made mine and put commercial versions out on the market. Something much cooler about using tools you make yourself though :)

Nora Bee said...

I love pottery! I'm enamored! I want to visit your shop next time I'm in BC!