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bison tools

updated thu 29 jul 10

 

David Hendley on tue 7 apr 98

At 09:08 AM 4/6/98 EDT, you wrote:
>----------------------------Original message----------------------------
>I love my expensive Bison tools from Phil. But, one problem I've been trying
>to solve . . . I have more "chattering" then with Kemper tools. Any
>sugestions?
>TIA, Debi
>
Well, after using my new Bison loop tool for a week now,
this 'chattering' is driving me crazy.
I can't stop it.
I've found myself trimming with the Bison tool, which
works very well to cut off nice sharp lines of clay,
and then switching to a half-dull Kemper tool to get
rid of the chattering marks and finish up.

I think the 'chattering' is the result of a really sharp tool.
A dull tool kind of trims and burnishes at the same time,
but a shart tool really CUTS.
A slightly different technique must be required, but, with
25 years of experience using semi-dull tools, I've yet
(in only one week) to find it.
I've tried:
slower wheel speed
faster wheel speed
lighter, less aggressive trimming
more aggressive trimming (removing more material faster)
using the broad flat face of the tool
using the pointed end of the tool
all to no avail.
It's hard for this old dog to learn new tricks.
Anyone?

David Hendley
Maydelle, Texas
hendley@sosweb.net

Richard Gralnik on wed 8 apr 98

David,

I spoke to the folks at Dolan about this problem a few years ago. As you
say, the sharper tools *CUT* through the clay. The suggestion they
made to me was to change the angle of the tool relative to the clay
surface so it can "peel" off the clay. I'm not sure if the term for the
angle to try is sharper or more oblique but you want the tool to slice
through the clay rather than ride over the surface and scrape the
clay off.

Just as a by-the-way, I was at Tom Coleman's studio a few years back
and met the gentleman who makes Bison tools. He told me that
the experts told him you can't bend tungsten the way he bends it
to make his tools. I don't know if he patented his process, but apparently
there was a lot of interest in how he was able to shape the metal.

Richard

At 07:50 AM 4/7/98 EDT, you wrote:
>----------------------------Original message----------------------------
>At 09:08 AM 4/6/98 EDT, you wrote:
>>----------------------------Original message----------------------------
>>I love my expensive Bison tools from Phil. But, one problem I've been
trying
>>to solve . . . I have more "chattering" then with Kemper tools. Any
>>sugestions?
>>TIA, Debi
>>
>Well, after using my new Bison loop tool for a week now,
>this 'chattering' is driving me crazy.
>I can't stop it.
>I've found myself trimming with the Bison tool, which
>works very well to cut off nice sharp lines of clay,
>and then switching to a half-dull Kemper tool to get
>rid of the chattering marks and finish up.
>
>I think the 'chattering' is the result of a really sharp tool.
>A dull tool kind of trims and burnishes at the same time,
>but a shart tool really CUTS.
>A slightly different technique must be required, but, with
>25 years of experience using semi-dull tools, I've yet
>(in only one week) to find it.
>I've tried:
>slower wheel speed
>faster wheel speed
>lighter, less aggressive trimming
>more aggressive trimming (removing more material faster)
>using the broad flat face of the tool
>using the pointed end of the tool
>all to no avail.
>It's hard for this old dog to learn new tricks.
>Anyone?
>
>David Hendley
>Maydelle, Texas
>hendley@sosweb.net
>
>

Alexander Solla on wed 8 apr 98


David-
I had a similar experience when I first purchased Dolan tools. Then found
that if I trimmed at a different wetness stage the problem alleviated
itself. I would gather from the claims of Bison that the tool is better
suited to hard leather-hard clay. Also consider where you are holding the
tool. If there is flex in the blade you'll be doomed by chattering.

Good luck and let us know what works

Alex in Utah
Slpbm@cc.usu.edu

Dave Eitel on wed 8 apr 98

>----------------------------Original message----------------------------
>At 09:08 AM 4/6/98 EDT, you wrote:
>>----------------------------Original message----------------------------
>>I love my expensive Bison tools from Phil. But, one problem I've been trying
>>to solve . . . I have more "chattering" then with Kemper tools. Any
>>sugestions?
>>TIA, Debi
>>
>Well, after using my new Bison loop tool for a week now,
>this 'chattering' is driving me crazy.
>I can't stop it.

In the ever dimmer recesses of what's left of my mind--way, way back in
the archives--there's something about chattering. If this were happening
to me, the first thing I'd try would be to trim the pots a bit wetter, then
I'd try with the wheel moving a bit more slowly. Can't wait to get my
first Bison tool. Actually, if they could be made to chatter consistently
I'd like that, too. Maybe worth the 50 bucks for a good chattering tool.

Dave

Dave Eitel
Cedar Creek Pottery
Cedarburg, WI USA
http://www.cedarcreekpottery.com

Sarah Barnes on wed 8 apr 98

Hi! I have found that in order to reduce chattering I change the angle
at which the tool hits the clay. Rotating closer into the pot. Hope this
helps

Sarah
sbarnes@mica.edu

On Tue, 7 Apr 1998, David Hendley wrote:

> ----------------------------Original message----------------------------
> At 09:08 AM 4/6/98 EDT, you wrote:
> >----------------------------Original message----------------------------
> >I love my expensive Bison tools from Phil. But, one problem I've been trying
> >to solve . . . I have more "chattering" then with Kemper tools. Any
> >sugestions?
> >TIA, Debi
> >
> Well, after using my new Bison loop tool for a week now,
> this 'chattering' is driving me crazy.
> I can't stop it.
> I've found myself trimming with the Bison tool, which
> works very well to cut off nice sharp lines of clay,
> and then switching to a half-dull Kemper tool to get
> rid of the chattering marks and finish up.
>
> I think the 'chattering' is the result of a really sharp tool.
> A dull tool kind of trims and burnishes at the same time,
> but a shart tool really CUTS.
> A slightly different technique must be required, but, with
> 25 years of experience using semi-dull tools, I've yet
> (in only one week) to find it.
> I've tried:
> slower wheel speed
> faster wheel speed
> lighter, less aggressive trimming
> more aggressive trimming (removing more material faster)
> using the broad flat face of the tool
> using the pointed end of the tool
> all to no avail.
> It's hard for this old dog to learn new tricks.
> Anyone?
>
> David Hendley
> Maydelle, Texas
> hendley@sosweb.net
>

Gary Hermanson on wed 8 apr 98

> ----------------------------Original message----------------------------
> At 09:08 AM 4/6/98 EDT, you wrote:
> >----------------------------Original message----------------------------
> >I love my expensive Bison tools from Phil. But, one problem I've been trying
> >to solve . . . I have more "chattering" then with Kemper tools. Any
> >sugestions?
> >TIA, Debi
> >

I had the same chattering problem with my Bison tool in the beginning.
The tool is so sharp that it digs into clay that is dry enough to trim with a Ke
Let your clay dry out more before trimming and you'll love the control you have

Steve & Kathy Williams on wed 8 apr 98

Hi David & Debi,

I have yet to plunk down the bucks for the Bison tools, so I can't speak from
experience. But, I do know that when I have experienced "chatter" using
Kemper tools the cause was trying to trim too wet. So,since the Bison tools
are so sharp maybe you need to let things get a little dryer than you
normally do. Good luck!

Steve Williams
Matney North Carolina
sawilliams@skybest.com


David Hendley wrote:
>
> ----------------------------Original message----------------------------
> At 09:08 AM 4/6/98 EDT, you wrote:
> >----------------------------Original message----------------------------
> >I love my expensive Bison tools from Phil. But, one problem I've been trying
> >to solve . . . I have more "chattering" then with Kemper tools. Any
> >sugestions?
> >TIA, Debi
> >
> Well, after using my new Bison loop tool for a week now,
> this 'chattering' is driving me crazy.
> I can't stop it.
> I've found myself trimming with the Bison tool, which
> works very well to cut off nice sharp lines of clay,
> and then switching to a half-dull Kemper tool to get
> rid of the chattering marks and finish up.
>
> I think the 'chattering' is the result of a really sharp tool.
> A dull tool kind of trims and burnishes at the same time,
> but a shart tool really CUTS.
> A slightly different technique must be required, but, with
> 25 years of experience using semi-dull tools, I've yet
> (in only one week) to find it.
> I've tried:
> slower wheel speed
> faster wheel speed
> lighter, less aggressive trimming
> more aggressive trimming (removing more material faster)
> using the broad flat face of the tool
> using the pointed end of the tool
> all to no avail.
> It's hard for this old dog to learn new tricks.
> Anyone?
>
> David Hendley
> Maydelle, Texas
> hendley@sosweb.net

John H. Rodgers on thu 9 apr 98

-- [ From: John H. Rodgers * EMC.Ver #2.5.02 ] --

I haven't tried the bison tools yet, but I sculpt in clay, wax and do some
wood carving as well as turnings on a lathe. My experience with all these
materials has been that if I get the tool blade( what ever tool I am using)
at the wrong angle to the work the tool will chatter. There is slicing
technique and there is scraping technique, and chattering will occur with
both. A factor also is how much pressure is being applied at the contact
point of the tool to the work, as well.

John Rodgers
In Alabama



-------- REPLY, Original message follows --------

Date: Wednesday, 08-Apr-98 12:21 PM

From: Steve & Kathy Williams \ Internet: (sawilliams@skybest.com)
To: Clayart \ Internet: (clayart@lsv.uky.edu)

Subject: Re: Bison Tools

----------------------------Original message----------------------------
Hi David & Debi,

I have yet to plunk down the bucks for the Bison tools, so I can't speak
from experience. But, I do know that when I have experienced "chatter"
using Kemper tools the cause was trying to trim too wet. So,since the Bison
tools are so sharp maybe you need to let things get a little dryer than you
normally do. Good luck!

Steve Williams Matney North Carolina sawilliams@skybest.com


David Hendley wrote:
>
> ----------------------------Original message----------------------------
> At 09:08 AM 4/6/98 EDT, you wrote:
> >----------------------------Original message----------------------------
> >I love my expensive Bison tools from Phil. But, one problem I've been
trying
> >to solve . . . I have more "chattering" then with Kemper tools. Any
> >sugestions?
> >TIA, Debi
> >
> Well, after using my new Bison loop tool for a week now,
> this 'chattering' is driving me crazy.
> I can't stop it.
> I've found myself trimming with the Bison tool, which
> works very well to cut off nice sharp lines of clay,
> and then switching to a half-dull Kemper tool to get
> rid of the chattering marks and finish up.
>
> I think the 'chattering' is the result of a really sharp tool.
> A dull tool kind of trims and burnishes at the same time,
> but a shart tool really CUTS.
> A slightly different technique must be required, but, with
> 25 years of experience using semi-dull tools, I've yet
> (in only one week) to find it.
> I've tried:
> slower wheel speed
> faster wheel speed
> lighter, less aggressive trimming
> more aggressive trimming (removing more material faster)
> using the broad flat face of the tool
> using the pointed end of the tool
> all to no avail.
> It's hard for this old dog to learn new tricks.
> Anyone?
>
> David Hendley
> Maydelle, Texas
> hendley@sosweb.net


-------- REPLY, End of original message --------

Liz Willoughby on thu 9 apr 98

>----------------------------Original message----------------------------
>>----------------------------Original message----------------------------
>>At 09:08 AM 4/6/98 EDT, you wrote:
>>>----------------------------Original message----------------------------
>>>I love my expensive Bison tools from Phil. But, one problem I've been trying
>>>to solve . . . I have more "chattering" then with Kemper tools. Any
>>>sugestions?
>>>TIA, Debi
>>>
>>Well, after using my new Bison loop tool for a week now,
>>this 'chattering' is driving me crazy.
>>I can't stop it.

You will get more control of the chattering created by using the Bison tool
if you hold it so that your index finger is on the metal bit (just beneath
the wooden handle). It will help to keep it from vibrating against the
clay. I use my Bison tool more than any other, but often in combination
with the surform blade, or a kemper tool. Softer clay and slower movement
of the wheel will also help to alleviate the chattering. Good luck, Liz

Liz Willoughby
R.R. 1
Grafton, Ontario
Canada. K0K 2G0

e-mail lizwill@phc.igs.net

Joyce Lee on fri 20 nov 98

I have enough requests for information for the Bison tools that I
finally searched out my catalogue. Usual disclaimers most definitely.

Bison Studios
1409 South Commerce Street
Las Vegas, Nevada 89102
phone (702) 388-2891

Statement in catalogue of "Proprietor/Maker" Philip Poburka is appealing
to this potter:

"Through the intermediacy of the Human central nervous system, the EARTH
seeks expression in making pots of itself."

Joyce
In the Mojave happy to think of Roger Bourland and Betty Burroughs (not
together, please...Roger's from Arizona, Betty from British
Columbia...both are my clayartbuds...)enjoying Coleman's workshop right
now and getting to observe Elaine CARVING, which is what I want to do.

Joyce Lee on sat 19 feb 00

Contact Bison Studios......1409 South Commerce Street....Las Vegas,
Nevada 89102. Phone 702-388-2891. The proprietor/maker (his billing)
is delightful to work with. He'll send you a small catalog for $1.00
with all hand-drawn tools shown to size. They're made of tungsten
carbide, last forever and are very sharp. BUT warning, if dropped, they
shatter! Nor are they inexpensive: my catalog says $52 for a standard
loop tool. But I love mine and use them all the time, gripping them
firmly and replacing them in their container after each use.

Joyce
In the Mojave awaiting another rain.....feels like winter except I'm
wearing neither socks with my birks, nor a jacket, while dashing out to
the mailbox. Snow frosting the Sierras is visible though from
our straggly five acres and I am using a gas heater to chase the chill
in the studio.

Jonathan Kaplan on sun 20 feb 00

------------------

I would definitely concur with Joyce.

We use 3 Bison tools in our shop. The first is a simple tool that Phillip
made for us to tool gutters in RAM=A9 press dies. Its 3 years old, has cut
hundreds of gutters in Hydrostone and Hydorcal, and is still as sharp as
the day we bought it. Myself and our mold maker are the only ones who use
it. Never been dropped=21=21

So I then bought 2 loop tools . We were going through cheesey Kemper double
end loop tools in record time and needed something that would last.

These tools really last. Unfortunatley, staff uses them and has dropped
them 3 times. They also know that if they break it, they pay for it.
Phillip repaired them twice. The third time will probably necessitate a new
tool.

We make alot of ware and trim alot of ware. We also use a seam machine,
which has a tendency to raise grog to the surface. The tools do not.

These Bison tools, while not cheap, are worth every penny. They last, hold
an edge, and for us are a real pleasure to work with.

Jonathan

Jonathan Kaplan
Ceramic Design Group LTd/Production Services
PO Box 775112
Steamboat Springs, CO 80477
(970) 879-9139 voice and fax
http://www.sni.net/ceramicdesign

UPS: 1280 13th St. Unit13
Steamboat Springs, CO 80487

Mike Gordon on mon 21 feb 00

Here in Ncal. there used to be lots of orchards, you could buy the peach
pitter ( Kemper loop tool ) for 50 cents at the hardware store. Mike

Joyce Lee on fri 17 nov 00


Bison tools are appreciated by potters from beginners through
intermediate (which is where I continue to hover; somebody give me a
shove, please) as well as among the most experienced and prolific of us.
Six of Phil's tools sit in their special caddy in my studio and, though
I pride myself on sharing as others have shared with me, NOBODY else
touches them for fear of arousing the snake-eyed highschool
disciplinarian ... who always lurks within me. Prior to meeting Phil's
marvels, I and #1 Support Person had purchased dozens of others,
similarly shaped and identically purposed ... and MUCH less costly. I'd
planned to continue using them, also, if just to get my money's worth,
but it never happens.

As an extra treat, Phil has drawn all the tools in his catalogue to
specs. The resulting catalog is exquisite and harkens of an earlier,
less hurried day.

Joyce
In the Mojave

Judy Musicant on sat 18 nov 00


I would like to contribute a resounding recommendation for Bison tools. =
Since purchasing one a year or so ago, it is practically the only tool I =
use for trimming. It has reduced my trimming time dramatically, and =
will trim practically dry pots with no problem - (No, I'm not affiliated =
with Bison in any way). Try it- you'll like it.

Judy

John Tilton on sat 18 nov 00


Allow me to toot Phil's horn a bit here since he is making you an "offer
you can't refuse".

I have 8 or so Bison tools and they are great; expensive, fragile, but
incredibly sharp and they stay that way for years.

So go ahead and "take the Oreck Challenge" but let me tell you that you
will want the tool and that it is worth the price you have to pay.

John



--
John Tilton
16211 NW 88th Terrace
Alachua, Fl. 32615
904-462-3762
Web site: http://www.tiltonpottery.com
mailto:tilton@atlantic.net

Craig Martell on sun 19 nov 00


Hi:

I've used 3 bison tools for about 3 yrs, I think. They are well designed,
well made with great care and fit rite in my chubby little hand.

I sent two of them back to Phil a cupla months ago and he got them back to
me post haste. Great service and they were as sharp as the day I first
used them. One of them had a loose shaft from me tweaking and churning on
it for too many days and nights. I forgot to mention that to Phil but when
the tool came back the shaft was no longer loose. What does that tell
us? The man pays attention to detail and takes care of bizness whether you
bring it up or not. We should respect that. I do!

my 2 tools worth, Craig Martell in Oregon

Jonathan Kaplan on sun 19 nov 00


I have spoken with Phil many times over the past few years and also have
quite a few of his tools.

Formerly there was a Kemper tool that we used ad infinitum in the plant for
trimming jiggered, cast and pressed work. We saved the remains of these
tools for a year. Their edgeds dulled within a few pieces and completely
rounded after a few more. We resharpened them many times and after a year,
had about 134 of these non-useable tools left over. Even though I get a
healthy discount at Mile Hi for Kemper tools, it still is a bunch of money
each year for these poorly built tools.

Enter Bison tools. I have 3 tools in the plant that every one uses. My
staff knows that if they drop th m and they break, they pay for either a
new tool if Phil can't repair it or they buy a new one. We have had some
incidents but everyone knows the caveats of using these tools. We have
rubber anitfatigue mats around the trimming wheels and hopefully should
anyone, including myself drop a Bison tool, the rubber will protect it from
damage.

I also use a Bison tool for trimming and tooling gutters in our RAM dies.
After 3 years of hard use with Ceramical and Hydrocal, it needed
resharpening. No bad at all.

Phil is wonderful to deal with. A gentleman by any stretch of the
imagination. The Bison tools will give years of use if cared for properly,
and save you some money also. They are certainly investment quality tools
and make trimming a joy.

Jonathan

Jonathan Kaplan, president
Ceramic Design Group
PO Box 775112
Steamboat Springs CO 80477
voice and fax 970 879-9139
jonathan@csn,net
http://www.sni.net/ceramicdesigin

Plant Location:
1280 13th Street Unit 13
Steamboat Springs CO 80487
(please use this address for all deliveries via UPS, comman carrier, FEd
Ex, etc.)

MtnPottery@AOL.COM on sun 19 nov 00


I also love my Bison tools and have students who love them but I had some
trouble with my students setting them on the table next to the wheels and
having them roll off and break. My answer was to flatten both sides of the
handle and then reseal them. I have not had a broken one since!! They save
lots of time and trouble trimming!

Andi Bauer on mon 20 nov 00


Can anyone give me an address/phone to contact Phil Poburka regarding a
catalogue or prices on his tools. Sounds like a great Christmas gift.

Andi in San Diego


>


thanks,

Andi

email: mailto:acody@ucsd.edu

Michele D'Amico on wed 20 dec 00


How can I get a Bison Tool catalog?
Michele D'Amico

Ilene Mahler on wed 12 jun 02


My old # for you isn't working Haven't received repaired tool Leaving in =
am for graduation back after the 24 th..Thanks ...Ilene

Catherine White on sat 20 jul 02


Where does one find these tools?
Thanks,
Catherine
----- Original Message -----
From: "Philip Poburka"
To:
Sent: Saturday, July 20, 2002 7:35 PM
Subject: Re: Bison Tools


> Well...
>
> Thank you Ted for the kind mention here.
>
> Those Handles looked HUGE to me, as I am used to the little babies of the
> length I usually make them.
>
> If anyone happens to prefer their Handles to be longer or shorter than I
> would do left to my own devices, I am happy to do them so.
>
> Now please remember to not let your friends or aquaintences drop these, or
> toss them about, as they are a mite 'brittle'!
>
> Don't forget!
>
> Regards,
>
> Phil
> BISON
> Las Vegas...
>
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: "Ted Whittemore"
> To:
> Sent: Saturday, July 20, 2002 6:56 PM
> Subject: Bison Tools
>
>
> > On the subject of Phil's excellent tungsten carbide tools,
> > which I have just had the pleasure of using for the first time,
> > let me say that they are very well made, very sharp (ouch!).
> >
> > They are no doubt the first of many more, but, if they end up being
> > as durable as tungsten carbide is supposed to be, not duplicates
> > of my worn out first purchases.
> >
> > Phil made the handles longer to my spec at no extra charge.
> >
> > Ted Whittemore
> >
> > ted@amgpi.com
> >
> >
>
____________________________________________________________________________
> __
> > Send postings to clayart@lsv.ceramics.org
> >
> > You may look at the archives for the list or change your subscription
> > settings from http://www.ceramics.org/clayart/
> >
> > Moderator of the list is Mel Jacobson who may be reached at
> melpots@pclink.com.
>
>
____________________________________________________________________________
__
> Send postings to clayart@lsv.ceramics.org
>
> You may look at the archives for the list or change your subscription
> settings from http://www.ceramics.org/clayart/
>
> Moderator of the list is Mel Jacobson who may be reached at
melpots@pclink.com.

Ted Whittemore on sat 20 jul 02


On the subject of Phil's excellent tungsten carbide tools,
which I have just had the pleasure of using for the first time,
let me say that they are very well made, very sharp (ouch!).

They are no doubt the first of many more, but, if they end up being
as durable as tungsten carbide is supposed to be, not duplicates
of my worn out first purchases.

Phil made the handles longer to my spec at no extra charge.

Ted Whittemore

ted@amgpi.com

Philip Poburka on sat 20 jul 02


Well...

Thank you Ted for the kind mention here.

Those Handles looked HUGE to me, as I am used to the little babies of the
length I usually make them.

If anyone happens to prefer their Handles to be longer or shorter than I
would do left to my own devices, I am happy to do them so.

Now please remember to not let your friends or aquaintences drop these, or
toss them about, as they are a mite 'brittle'!

Don't forget!

Regards,

Phil
BISON
Las Vegas...

----- Original Message -----
From: "Ted Whittemore"
To:
Sent: Saturday, July 20, 2002 6:56 PM
Subject: Bison Tools


> On the subject of Phil's excellent tungsten carbide tools,
> which I have just had the pleasure of using for the first time,
> let me say that they are very well made, very sharp (ouch!).
>
> They are no doubt the first of many more, but, if they end up being
> as durable as tungsten carbide is supposed to be, not duplicates
> of my worn out first purchases.
>
> Phil made the handles longer to my spec at no extra charge.
>
> Ted Whittemore
>
> ted@amgpi.com
>
>
____________________________________________________________________________
__
> Send postings to clayart@lsv.ceramics.org
>
> You may look at the archives for the list or change your subscription
> settings from http://www.ceramics.org/clayart/
>
> Moderator of the list is Mel Jacobson who may be reached at
melpots@pclink.com.

Gary C. Hatcher on sun 21 jul 02


I am not a regular on clay art but did notice the thread about Bison Tools
and wanted to put in my two cents worth. I have purchased something like ten
of Philip's trimming tools over the last 5 years and would not be without
them. They are some of the only tools I have used over the last 30 years of
making pots that are a total joy to use every time. After a couple of years
of constant use, the edge does get a little soft and I have sent them back
for sharpening. I have broken one by dropping it so that is the only
negative that I have encountered. Although I did break one, I have dropped
the tools many times without breakage.
If you make a lot of pots, indulge yourself in one of these tools and you
will be hooked too. Pure quality.
gary

ps: six of those ten were gifts to other potters


Gary C. Hatcher
e-mail: gchfire@pobox.com
home/studio: 1-903-857-2271
university office: 1-903-566-7296
http://www.pinemills.com

Ted Whittemore on sun 21 jul 02


pdp1@earthlink.net

Phil Poburka

Ted


Where does one find these tools?
Thanks,
Catherine
----- Original Message -----
From: "Philip Poburka"
To:
Sent: Saturday, July 20, 2002 7:35 PM
Subject: Re: Bison Tools


> Well...
>
> Thank you Ted for the kind mention here.
>
> Those Handles looked HUGE to me, as I am used to the little babies of the
> length I usually make them.
>
> If anyone happens to prefer their Handles to be longer or shorter than I
> would do left to my own devices, I am happy to do them so.
>
> Now please remember to not let your friends or aquaintences drop these, or
> toss them about, as they are a mite 'brittle'!
>
> Don't forget!
>
> Regards,
>
> Phil
> BISON
> Las Vegas...
>
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: "Ted Whittemore"
> To:
> Sent: Saturday, July 20, 2002 6:56 PM
> Subject: Bison Tools
>
>
> > On the subject of Phil's excellent tungsten carbide tools,
> > which I have just had the pleasure of using for the first time,
> > let me say that they are very well made, very sharp (ouch!).
> >
> > They are no doubt the first of many more, but, if they end up being
> > as durable as tungsten carbide is supposed to be, not duplicates
> > of my worn out first purchases.
> >
> > Phil made the handles longer to my spec at no extra charge.
> >
> > Ted Whittemore
> >
> > ted@amgpi.com
> >
> >
>
____________________________________________________________________________
> __
> > Send postings to clayart@lsv.ceramics.org
> >
> > You may look at the archives for the list or change your subscription
> > settings from http://www.ceramics.org/clayart/
> >
> > Moderator of the list is Mel Jacobson who may be reached at
> melpots@pclink.com.
>
>
____________________________________________________________________________
__
> Send postings to clayart@lsv.ceramics.org
>
> You may look at the archives for the list or change your subscription
> settings from http://www.ceramics.org/clayart/
>
> Moderator of the list is Mel Jacobson who may be reached at
melpots@pclink.com.

____________________________________________________________________________
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Send postings to clayart@lsv.ceramics.org

You may look at the archives for the list or change your subscription
settings from http://www.ceramics.org/clayart/

Moderator of the list is Mel Jacobson who may be reached at
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The Kline's on mon 22 jul 02


At 06:40 PM 7/21/02 -0500, you wrote:
>I am not a regular on clay art but did notice the thread about Bison Tools
>and wanted to put in my two cents worth. I have purchased something like ten
>of Philip's trimming tools over the last 5 years and would not be without
>them. They are some of the only tools I have used over the last 30 years of
>making pots that are a total joy to use every time. After a couple of years
>of constant use, the edge does get a little soft and I have sent them back
>for sharpening. I have broken one by dropping it so that is the only
>negative that I have encountered. Although I did break one, I have dropped
>the tools many times without breakage.
>If you make a lot of pots, indulge yourself in one of these tools and you
>will be hooked too. Pure quality.
>gary
>
>ps: six of those ten were gifts to other potters
>
>
>Gary C. Hatcher
>e-mail: gchfire@pobox.com
>home/studio: 1-903-857-2271
>university office: 1-903-566-7296
>http://www.pinemills.com
>

I have a Bison tool that has been broken for a year at least. I have tried
to call Philip Poburka several times. I get "the number you have reached
is not in service." I have e-mailed him, only to have my e-mail returned
as not deliverable. What's going on? I read all these raves about this
guy, who seems to have a lot of time to spend on sending messages to
Clayart on various topics, but I can't get in touch with him. I just want
to get the damn tool fixed.

Marjory
>___________________________________________________________________________
___
>Send postings to clayart@lsv.ceramics.org
>
>You may look at the archives for the list or change your subscription
>settings from http://www.ceramics.org/clayart/
>
>Moderator of the list is Mel Jacobson who may be reached at
melpots@pclink.com.
>

william schran on sat 10 aug 02


Some time back Phil Poburka of Bison Studios wrote that he was
developing some new trimming tools and asked if folks were interested
in trying them out.
Having suffered through years of using a famous national brand, then
finding Dolan tools and finally decent quality, I was intrigued by
Phil's offer. I've heard a little about Bison tools on this list and
wondered if another maker's tool would be that much better.
After some messages back & forth Phil sent me an image of several
tools and asked me to select one. I picked out an "L" shaped blade.
The tool arrived yesterday afternoon. I had thrown some small
porcelain forms and some larger bowls made with a locally dug clay
containing lots of sand (makes my hands very smooth after throwing
with this stuff for a while).
The tool is about 5 1/2" long with the blade about an 1" long, then
bent at a right angle and the leg about 3/4" long. The handle is a
very comfortable tear drop shape.
I got one word for this tool - SWEET!
Trimmed most of the porcelain forms this evening. Like a hot knife
through butter. Stopped trimming after a bit and decided I need to
let the clay get a bit stiffer. The blade is a sharp little bugger.
Don't have to press into the clay very hard.
Phil has won me over. I know where I'll be going to get my trimming
tools from know on.
Bill

claybair on sun 11 aug 02


Thanks Bill,
You wrote the posting I was going to write when I had a
spare moment.
Ditto!
It is very sharp and very sweet. I told Phil it was as if he measured my
hand.... fits like a glove and is very sharp.
Nice, nice.... at last I get to use a Lexus instead of a beat up VW tool.

Gayle Bair
Bainbridge Island, WA
http://claybair.com

-----Original Message-----
From: Ceramic Arts Discussion List [mailto:CLAYART@LSV.CERAMICS.ORG]On
Behalf Of william schran
Sent: Saturday, August 10, 2002 5:43 PM
To: CLAYART@LSV.CERAMICS.ORG
Subject: Bison tools


Some time back Phil Poburka of Bison Studios wrote that he was
developing some new trimming tools and asked if folks were interested
in trying them out.
Having suffered through years of using a famous national brand, then
finding Dolan tools and finally decent quality, I was intrigued by
Phil's offer. I've heard a little about Bison tools on this list and
wondered if another maker's tool would be that much better.
After some messages back & forth Phil sent me an image of several
tools and asked me to select one. I picked out an "L" shaped blade.
The tool arrived yesterday afternoon. I had thrown some small
porcelain forms and some larger bowls made with a locally dug clay
containing lots of sand (makes my hands very smooth after throwing
with this stuff for a while).
The tool is about 5 1/2" long with the blade about an 1" long, then
bent at a right angle and the leg about 3/4" long. The handle is a
very comfortable tear drop shape.
I got one word for this tool - SWEET!
Trimmed most of the porcelain forms this evening. Like a hot knife
through butter. Stopped trimming after a bit and decided I need to
let the clay get a bit stiffer. The blade is a sharp little bugger.
Don't have to press into the clay very hard.
Phil has won me over. I know where I'll be going to get my trimming
tools from know on.
Bill

____________________________________________________________________________
__
Send postings to clayart@lsv.ceramics.org

You may look at the archives for the list or change your subscription
settings from http://www.ceramics.org/clayart/

Moderator of the list is Mel Jacobson who may be reached at
melpots@pclink.com.

artimater on mon 26 aug 02


Hey all,
Ya'll don't bother Phil with orders till he gets through making my =
new loops.....I already sent him the money....He is also making a =
prototype I pointed him at....I hope he puts my name on the side of it's =
cool walnut handle!
PAX,
Rush
"I only indulge when I've seen a snake, so I keep a supply of =
indulgences and snakes handy"
http://artimator.com
rush@artimator.com
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/texasceramics/
Artimator Galleries
2420 Briarwood Ln.
Carrollton, TX 75006
972-841-1857

mel jacobson on sat 31 aug 02


phil, nils lou just bought a new audi TT sports car.

when i opened my box of bison tools it reminded me
of an audi TT.

clean design, sharp, made to fit.
makes tight turns. has power. looks great.

anyone that wants fine trimming tools, buy bison.
phil even posts a good post to clayart now and then.
thanks phil.
mel

From:
Minnetonka, Minnesota, U.S.A.
web site: my.pclink.com/~melpots
or try: http://www.pclink.com/melpots

mel jacobson on mon 2 sep 02


phil, and others.

i do not know if this post went out last week.
i think i lost it>

nils lou just bought a new audi TT sports car.

when i opened my tools from phil i thought
of the car...sporty, sharp, well made, exacting.

so, yes,
phil makes great tools.
i am a proud owner.
mel
From:
Minnetonka, Minnesota, U.S.A.
web site: my.pclink.com/~melpots
or try: http://www.pclink.com/melpots

artimater on sat 7 sep 02


Hey all,
Today I got another tool from Phil.....This one I even had a hand =
in designing....We had a long conversation and I told him, "What I would =
really like is...." Now it's sexy walnut handle is hot in my =
hand......Real cool....Just looking at it I can tell it is going to be =
my favorite.....I guess you could say it is a Rush Signature Bison =
Tool.....I can't wait to get my itinerary and plane tickets for the =
promotional tourHEHEHE....Coming to a clay studio near you....Doncha =
know?........
Seriously...I have been trying out an assortment of Phil's fine =
carbide blade tools for a couple weeks now....I can tell you there is a =
bit of a learning curve involved before you can reach their maximum =
potential....I have the band-aid on my finger to prove it....but every =
pot I do with them works a little easier and better, so I am sure even =
an old dog like myself is changing his most used tools for good....I =
will be keeping some of my old ones around for sentimental reasons =
only....and since I would say it would be damn near impossible to wear =
these Bisons out; I think in the long run they are going to save me a =
whole wad of money...Imagine me going to the ceramic supply house and =
only buying clay!!!....Or maybe a book or two, with nice pics to look =
at...
PAX,
Rush
"I only indulge when I've seen a snake, so I keep a supply of =
indulgences and snakes handy"
http://artimator.com
rush@artimator.com
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/texasceramics/
Artimator Galleries
2420 Briarwood Ln.
Carrollton, TX 75006
972-841-1857

Dianne K. Kirwin on mon 9 dec 02


have checked the archives for these tools and have been trying to
contact philip poburka at the earthlink address which keeps bouncing
back at me. is he off the web? does anyone know? are the tools still
available?

dianne in denver

Joyce Lee on wed 22 jan 03


Phil .... once again I have a request for your
snail mail address and telephone number in
Vegas. I just sent something to you but
apparently my note with the above information,
as well as with your e-mail address,
wound up going to the dump. =20

Thanks, bud.

Joyce
In the Mojave looking forward to having stitches
removed tomorrow ..... and finding out whether
or not physical therapy is prescribed ... also
grateful to friends who've made the trek "out
into" the desert to visit, haul in the mail, bring food=20
and run errands. The wild rabbits are fat and
feisty ..... no horned toads anywhere, drat it ..... and the
ravens are riding the thermals directly over the
studio .... raucously hovering awaiting their
turn ......=20

Steve Dalton on sat 14 feb 04


Are Bison tools still being made? I haven't
heard much talk about them for some time.

Steve Dalton
Clear Creek Pottery
Snohomish, Wa
clearcreekpottery.com

Cat Jarosz on sun 15 feb 04


About Bison Tools... the older they get the better they work. I have 2 ,
1 was a special order made with the smallest size material and after what I
think is 2 yrs of use its better than NEW... the other is the standard trim
tool for platters and I absolutely guard it with my LIFE !!!! I went out
and bought a rolling cart ( el cheapo ) with plastic pan atop so I had
something to put that BISON in when I needed to lay it down. I had broken the
first bison tool by repeated falling off my bench prior to the cart and
relearning to place tools into the cart rather than on the bench I sit on was awkward
but those bisons have now aged to a wonderful 2 yrs of age because of this
shift in habit. I also have a special spot to store it when not being used
that is far away from the other tools.

I sometimes feel like a wood worker instead of a potter as alot of my work
is sculpted using that trim tool on a giffin grip. I use alot of the el
cheapo tiny trim tools out there for the really tedious work but these BISONS
help make them last longer by taking off the bulk. Between the sur form and
bison I couldnt live without either. I guard em with my life and that aint
easy task to keep focus on a tool when you suffer ADD and are hyper focused on
the work... trying to train myself to be aware of those tools where abouts at
all times

Phil have you decided on where to move yet ? I was sorry to about the
loss of your studio in .las vegas but am hoping you move close to western NC as
I'd love to come see all those fabulous tools you make.. the better the tools
the better the pots or at least the more options you have.... I sometimes feel
the primal urge to horde bison tools somewhere as PHIL is the ONLY source ...


ps for tony clennel our own austin powers dude magic water is 1 gallon
water , 3 tbsp sodium silicate and 1 1/2 tsp soda ash. Between spit and this
stuff for repairing work I swear on em....

Oh one more thing..... I SPIN ON MY HEAD FOR BISON TOOLS WOOO HOOOO
!!!
:oD thats for Joyce

Cat Jarosz in the incredibly wet mountains of North Carolina USA trying to
train a 1 yr old Airedale PUP that is always trying to move up in the
pecking order around here that I am the boss... hahahahahhahahahahahahahahahahaha
sure I am in my dreams....spoiled rotten dog named Curly I am MOE and
john is Larry...

ppps I am working on some really fun tri pod pods... having an
incredible time of it too and have not been so happy with work in long time.. its
exciting... also did some old old old work that I hadnt done since college days...
face mugs and road toads.. I am so glad I dont do those anylonger because
of the time involved but they sure were fun and a nice break... It put a
happy face back on my head thats not been there for long time... good
memories....

Jeanette Harris on sun 15 feb 04


>
>hi steve,
>yes yes yes! phil is still making them.
>here is his address:
>pdp1@earthlink.net

Hey, Steve,
I can't tell you how much I like my bison trim tool. It's not only a
wonderful tool, it's also a beautiful thing to look at. Fits my hand
perfectly. Phil makes a variety of handles that are so comfortable
to hold.

Jeanette, reminding myself that I need to unearth his catalog and
order another.

william schran on sun 15 feb 04


Steve wrote:>Are Bison tools still being made? I haven't
heard much talk about them for some time.<

Yes, they're still being made and they're as sharp as the dickens!
I was very surprised late last year receiving a new Bison tool for my
birthday from my studio assistant.

It's also true that one may have to adjust their trimming technique
due to the keen sharp edge of these tools. My habit has always been
to have the wheel going very fast during the trimming process. When I
first received a prototype Bison tool, I had all sorts of problems
with chattering. Phil told me to slow down. I did, and the tool works
like a dream.
Bill

claybair on sun 15 feb 04


Steve,

Phil is on Clayart all the time but he must be
pretty modest as he rarely pitches his great tools.
So I'll do it for him....They are fabulous and I must
order some from him soon as I am wearing out the cheapo
tools and spending way more than the one time cost of
a Bison.
Phil, you had better still be making them.... I need some!!!


Gayle Bair - one very satisfied Bison customer!
Bainbridge Island, WA
http://claybair.com

-----Original Message-----
From:Steve Dalton

Are Bison tools still being made? I haven't
heard much talk about them for some time.

Steve Dalton
Clear Creek Pottery
Snohomish, Wa
clearcreekpottery.com

Marta Matray Gloviczki on sun 15 feb 04


Steve Dalton wrote:
>Are Bison tools still being made? I haven't
>heard much talk about them for some time.

hi steve,
yes yes yes! phil is still making them.
here is his address:
pdp1@earthlink.net

i even heard that phil, the master of bison tools from las vegas
is going to be at nceca in indianapolis!
isnt it great?

marta, who just ordered her first bison tools...

=====
marta matray gloviczki
rochester,mn

http://www.angelfire.com/mn2/marta/
http://users.skynet.be/russel.fouts/Marta.htm
http://www.silverhawk.com/crafts/gloviczki/welcome.html

wayneinkeywest on sun 15 feb 04


Steve:
Phil in LV would probably be the one to reply to this, but yes, they
are still being made, and better than anything you'll find on the
market!

Wayne Seidl

----- Original Message -----
From: "Steve Dalton"
To:
Sent: Saturday, February 14, 2004 10:36 PM
Subject: Bison Tools


> Are Bison tools still being made? I haven't
> heard much talk about them for some time.
>
> Steve Dalton
> Clear Creek Pottery
> Snohomish, Wa
> clearcreekpottery.com
>
>
____________________________________________________________________
__________
> Send postings to clayart@lsv.ceramics.org
>
> You may look at the archives for the list or change your
subscription
> settings from http://www.ceramics.org/clayart/
>
> Moderator of the list is Mel Jacobson who may be reached at
melpots@pclink.com.
>

Hank Murrow on sun 15 feb 04


On Feb 14, 2004, at 7:36 PM, Steve Dalton wrote:

> Are Bison tools still being made? I haven't
> heard much talk about them for some time.
>

Try pdp1@earthlink.net

I am going to order another small "A" loop tool so I have a spare why
Phil sharpens my original one. I have trimmed around 7000 pots with
this one! Amazing tools.

Cheers, Hank in Eugene

in recovery mode after a fabulous reception at the White Lotus Gallery
for my work. What a contrast.......after solitary hours in the studio
for months........then nonstop talking for four hours with multitudes!

Christine Caswell on wed 10 mar 04


"Recent talk of Bison tools reminds me..."

I had never heard of Bison tools until I read about them on Clayart. Where
can I see pictures and prices? I did an internet search and didn't come up
with much. You all have me really wanted to buy something I've never even
seen!!!

Thanks,

-Christine Caswell

David Hendley on wed 10 mar 04


Bison tools are the top-of-the-line trimming tools, and are quite expensive.
My advice (apologies to Phil) is to forget about the Bisons for a while.
Buy some cheap Kemper tools in several sizes and configurations. Try them
out for a few months, see which one you like, and then order the profile
and size you like best from Phil.
This is a personal matter - no one can decide your preferences for you,
and experience is the best indicator.
David Hendley
david@farmpots.com
http://www.farmpots.com


----- Original Message -----
> Recent talk of Bison tools reminds me that I have been procrastinating
> on ordering some. Everytime I look at the wonderful catalogue I find it
> difficult to make up my mind on what to order. I am fairly new to
> throwing so don't have much experience to go on. What are some of your
> favorite Bison Tools for trimming? I work mostly with stoneware and some
> porcelain and throw small to medium size pieces. Any advice?
>
>

Chris Rupp on wed 10 mar 04


Janet,

I have been using the Heavy Duty "L" Hook for about three months and I don't
know how I ever lived without it! This tool is so great and the shape is
perfect for just about everything. I have not found myself in a trimming
position yet where this tool did not work just perfect. I thought it might
be a little flexible and breakable, but this thing is rock solid, no flex,
and no chattering.

Thanks Phil!

Chris
Sunny Santa Barbara




>From: Janet Moe/Paul Bailey
>Reply-To: Clayart
>To: CLAYART@LSV.CERAMICS.ORG
>Subject: Bison Tools
>Date: Wed, 10 Mar 2004 13:47:40 -0800
>
>Recent talk of Bison tools reminds me that I have been procrastinating
>on ordering some. Everytime I look at the wonderful catalogue I find it
>difficult to make up my mind on what to order. I am fairly new to
>throwing so don't have much experience to go on. What are some of your
>favorite Bison Tools for trimming? I work mostly with stoneware and some
>porcelain and throw small to medium size pieces. Any advice?
>
>Janet, on Denman Island, BC where the crocus is in full bloom and the
>daffodil buds are getting fat!
>
>______________________________________________________________________________
>Send postings to clayart@lsv.ceramics.org
>
>You may look at the archives for the list or change your subscription
>settings from http://www.ceramics.org/clayart/
>
>Moderator of the list is Mel Jacobson who may be reached at
>melpots@pclink.com.

_________________________________________________________________
FREE pop-up blocking with the new MSN Toolbar get it now!
http://clk.atdmt.com/AVE/go/onm00200415ave/direct/01/

Janet Moe/Paul Bailey on wed 10 mar 04


Recent talk of Bison tools reminds me that I have been procrastinating
on ordering some. Everytime I look at the wonderful catalogue I find it
difficult to make up my mind on what to order. I am fairly new to
throwing so don't have much experience to go on. What are some of your
favorite Bison Tools for trimming? I work mostly with stoneware and some
porcelain and throw small to medium size pieces. Any advice?

Janet, on Denman Island, BC where the crocus is in full bloom and the
daffodil buds are getting fat!

pdp1@EARTHLINK.NET on wed 10 mar 04


Hi Janet,



Wow...I bet Denman Island is very pretty...!


How about I send you some images?

I am presently making new ones for 'e-mail' sending.



My Pottery Work tended to be smallish-medium sized
things...many Bowls of 14 inches or less, usually
less...small cups and tumblers and such, smallish
Cannisters...and...


I did almost all my Trimming with a 3/4 "A" Loop and a
little "No. 38" Solid Tool...sometimes resorting to some
other shape but seldom. If I could only have two, it would
be those two.

I think those two make a very good compliment to eachother
and will get just about anything Trimmed, even tiny tiny
feet ( the '38' will)...


Let me know on the images?



Phil
Bison
Las Vegas




----- Original Message -----
From: "Janet Moe/Paul Bailey"
To:
Sent: Wednesday, March 10, 2004 1:47 PM
Subject: Bison Tools


> Recent talk of Bison tools reminds me that I have been
procrastinating
> on ordering some. Everytime I look at the wonderful
catalogue I find it
> difficult to make up my mind on what to order. I am fairly
new to
> throwing so don't have much experience to go on. What are
some of your
> favorite Bison Tools for trimming? I work mostly with
stoneware and some
> porcelain and throw small to medium size pieces. Any
advice?
>
> Janet, on Denman Island, BC where the crocus is in full
bloom and the
> daffodil buds are getting fat!
>
>
____________________________________________________________
__________________
> Send postings to clayart@lsv.ceramics.org
>
> You may look at the archives for the list or change your
subscription
> settings from http://www.ceramics.org/clayart/
>
> Moderator of the list is Mel Jacobson who may be reached
at melpots@pclink.com.

B. Lev on thu 11 mar 04


excuse my ignorance but where does one find bison tools? is there a =
catalogue, a url or some such? I keep hearing the singing of praises =
but I have yet to see them.
bev

Hank Murrow on thu 11 mar 04


On Mar 10, 2004, at 3:08 PM, Christine Caswell wrote:

> "Recent talk of Bison tools reminds me..."
>
> I had never heard of Bison tools until I read about them on Clayart.
> Where
> can I see pictures and prices? I did an internet search and didn't
> come up
> with much. You all have me really wanted to buy something I've never
> even
> seen!!!

Dear Christine;

Phil will be working on his website as soon as he can get NCECA behind
him. He has bee doing nothing but tools for two months, thanks in part
to the Clayart family. He can send you e_mail pics of some if you
request them. Send your request to pdp1@earthlink.net. remember that
he'll be gone all next week.

Cheers, Hank.......who got his Eugene studio all clean and nice for his
workshop this weekend, and who looks forward to meeting some Canadian
Clayarters in Vancouver, BC next week.

Vicki Hardin on thu 2 sep 04


Phil, if you do not mind, would you e-mail me off list.

Vicki Hardin
Clay Art Web Guide

Sheryl VanVleck-Wells on tue 23 nov 04


Does anyone have the e-mail for Phil so that I can get a catalogue for =
his tools? I searched on-line but didn't come up with anything.
Thanks
Sheryl
Sheryl A. VanVleck
VanVleck Studio
7873 N. Oak Ridge Road
Morgantown, IN 46410
www.VanVleckStudio.com

Courage does not always roar. Sometimes it is the quiet voice at the end =
of the day which says, 'I will try again tomorrow.'
Author Unknown

Craig Clark on tue 23 nov 04


Sherl. it's pdb1@earthlink.net
Craig

>
>

L. P. Skeen on tue 23 nov 04


Craig, it's not even THAT. It's pdp1@earthlink.net .
----- Original Message -----
From: "Craig Clark"

> Sherl. it's pdb1@earthlink.net
> Craig

Charles Moore on wed 19 jan 05


Phil,

I just returned from the Mendocino workshop a couple of days ago. Several
of the presenters/demonstrators praised your Bison trimming tools. But no
one had your address to place an order; I had left my address book at home.
I thought that you might be willing to share information on Clayart on how
people can order one or more of your wonderful tools.

Would you?

Charles Moore
Sacramento

Dolita Dohrman on fri 7 sep 07


I have been in my studio trimming, and, as some of you may know, I am
the trimming queen. I used to refer to myself as a Master Trimmer
until I realized there really was such a thing from one of our recent
publications. Now, let me preface this by saying that I have no
vested interest, Phil and I are not related, we have never dated nor
will we ever (married, happy, 35 years), we are not neighbors, let me
see...have I left anything out...I am not getting paid to say this.
Oh yes, we are friends through Clayart and I worked for a couple of
hours at Phil's booth one NCECA. So here I go. Let me tell you
something...if you do not have a Bison tool...get one. I have one
trimming tool and one carving knife. I used to just reach for the
trimming tool when my piece was a bit past leather hard. Then I
started reaching for it when it was a little softer than leather hard
as I realized the sharpness of the tool requires less pressure. Now
I reach for it all the time unless I need a specific shape. It is
PERFECT! I used to complain a bit because it would start chattering
but it is interesting that it no longer happens. I think it is a
little like learning to drive a stick shift. When you first start,
the car kind of lurches a bit but, after awhile, it is smooth as
butter. Just second nature. Many are concerned about not being able
to get Dolan tools. I must have 10-12 of them...some long worn out.
They hardly get used anymore. One or two of Phil's tools will last
you pretty much forever. Just don't drop them. I have mine in a
plastic tube (when I bought one of those flexible garlic peelers)
with a piece of sponge at the bottom and a rubber stopper on top. It
is always in there when not in use. My knife is in a more slender
tube that a pen came in.
Dolita - going back out to trim 4 more bowls

Patty Rios on fri 7 sep 07


CARVING TOOL preference: What kind of carving knife did you get?
Bison tools has 2 sizes of looped carvers and many different loop shapes to choose from. I didn't know whether to get a small pointed loop or a small U shaped loop. Or are you saying you bought a knife shape to carve? What is your preference for carving?
I bought a Bison trim tool at NCECA and it is the best investment.

Dolita Dohrman wrote:
I have been in my studio trimming, and, as some of you may know, I am
the trimming queen. I used to refer to myself as a Master Trimmer
until I realized there really was such a thing from one of our recent
publications. Now, let me preface this by saying that I have no
vested interest, Phil and I are not related, we have never dated nor
will we ever (married, happy, 35 years), we are not neighbors, let me
see...have I left anything out...I am not getting paid to say this.
Oh yes, we are friends through Clayart and I worked for a couple of
hours at Phil's booth one NCECA. So here I go. Let me tell you
something...if you do not have a Bison tool...get one. I have one
trimming tool and one carving knife. I used to just reach for the
trimming tool when my piece was a bit past leather hard. Then I
started reaching for it when it was a little softer than leather hard
as I realized the sharpness of the tool requires less pressure. Now
I reach for it all the time unless I need a specific shape. It is
PERFECT! I used to complain a bit because it would start chattering
but it is interesting that it no longer happens. I think it is a
little like learning to drive a stick shift. When you first start,
the car kind of lurches a bit but, after awhile, it is smooth as
butter. Just second nature. Many are concerned about not being able
to get Dolan tools. I must have 10-12 of them...some long worn out.
They hardly get used anymore. One or two of Phil's tools will last
you pretty much forever. Just don't drop them. I have mine in a
plastic tube (when I bought one of those flexible garlic peelers)
with a piece of sponge at the bottom and a rubber stopper on top. It
is always in there when not in use. My knife is in a more slender
tube that a pen came in.
Dolita - going back out to trim 4 more bowls

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PATTY RIOS

Dolita Dohrman on sat 8 sep 07


Phil made the carving knife for me. It is about 3/4 in. long, very
narrow, and is sharp on both sides. I use it when I pierce. I have
a loop tool for trimming...the kind that has a soft 'point' on one end.
Dolita
On Sep 7, 2007, at 9:55 PM, Patty Rios wrote:

> CARVING TOOL preference: What kind of carving knife did you get?
> Bison tools has 2 sizes of looped carvers and many different
> loop shapes to choose from. I didn't know whether to get a small
> pointed loop or a small U shaped loop. Or are you saying you
> bought a knife shape to carve? What is your preference for carving?
> I bought a Bison trim tool at NCECA and it is the best investment.
>

vpitelka on mon 24 dec 07


Lee wrote:
"If you are a knife nut like I am, you know that hard does not
necessarily mean sharp. Hard holds its edge longer, but you can make
a sharper edge with softer metal. You'd think every one would know
this in comparing stainless knives with non-stainless steel. You just
have to sharpen non-stainless more often."

Hi Lee -
I am a knife nut too, and in fact when I travel around the US I carry my
diamond stones and hones, and I sharpen people's knives when I visit. Bring
food and beer, wash dishes, sharpen knives. I always get invited back,
hopefully for other reasons as well.

My experience is that you can sharpen a hard edge (like a fine Japanese
bimetallic edge) just as sharp as a softer edge. The only difference is
that the hard edge holds the sharp edge much longer. I think perhaps what
happens with softer knife edges is that the softer material naturally takes
a "rougher" sharp edge, if that makes any sense, and in use it tends to cut
like micro-serrations. Technically it is a cruder edge, but it will seem to
slice a tomato better than a hard knife when both have been sharpened
equally.

I love those old high-carbon-steel chef's knives. As you say, you must dry
them immediately after washing so that they do not rust, but they are so
satisfying to sharpen, and they really hold an edge. I own several that
were among my mom's favorite knives when I was growing up (still am) in the
Berkeley hills.
- Vince


Vince Pitelka
Appalachian Center for Craft
Tennessee Tech University
vpitelka@dtccom.net; wpitelka@tntech.edu
http://iweb.tntech.edu/wpitelka

Collette Smith on mon 24 dec 07


I bought a Bison tool at NCECA and the first time I used it to trim as I was using my finger to clean out clay scraps it cut me. That was the end for me! Too sharp and dangerous. I have a small stash of dolan tools and when they run out I'll get the new Axner goovey tools. Hope some day Dolan comes back to us.
Collette Smith

Lynne and Bruce Girrell on mon 24 dec 07


>I bought a Bison tool at NCECA and the first time I used it to trim as I
>was using my finger to clean out clay scraps it cut me.
>That was the end for me! Too sharp and dangerous.

That's about like saying that you don't like the way that razor blades work
because you cut your tongue when you licked one of them.

Yes, the tools are sharp. They're _supposed to be_ sharp. Keep your fingers
out of there. If I really get some clay stuck in a tool, I find that a
needle tool works well for dislodging the clay.

Bruce Girrell

Earl Brunner on mon 24 dec 07


We all learn from experience, but some of us learn the wrong things. What you should have learned was to be more careful. Do you use knives in the kitchen? On the other hand it is important to know your limitations.......

We had a pottery teacher at the city, who banned the flixible metal ribs from her class. Every beginning tool kit comes with one in it. She implied that the rest of the teachers were irresponsible if we let our students use them. During open studio time her students were horrified if they saw someone using one. I have never seen anyone get hurt with one.... in 40 years. I have seen some one stick a needle tool in their arm up to the handle.......


Earl Brunner
Las Vegas, NV



----- Original Message ----
From: Collette Smith
To: CLAYART@LSV.CERAMICS.ORG
Sent: Monday, December 24, 2007 5:18:25 AM
Subject: Bison tools

I bought a Bison tool at NCECA and the first time I used it to trim as I was using my finger to clean out clay scraps it cut me. That was the end for me! Too sharp and dangerous. I have a small stash of dolan tools and when they run out I'll get the new Axner goovey tools. Hope some day Dolan comes back to us.
Collette Smith

______________________________________________________________________________
Clayart members may send postings to: clayart@lsv.ceramics.org

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subscription settings here: http://www.acers.org/cic/clayart/

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=?iso-8859-1?Q?Tig_Dupr=E9?= on mon 24 dec 07


DISCLAIMER UP FRONT: I have no financial interest (other than paying for my=
purchases) in Phil's enterprises.

I have seven of Phil's incredible tools. Used 'em to trim *MANY* pots, mai=
nly porcelain. My tools will trim clay so thin, you can see type through t=
he shavings. I keep mine in a sponge, like Hank suggests, and keep the spo=
nge in a box, so I can position my bank of tools where I want them whilst t=
rimming. *BUT*... besides the craftsmanship and utility of Bison tools, I=
just plain like to call and talk with Phil while I'm ordering another of h=
is tools. If you enjoy reading his posts here on Clayart, you'll love talk=
ing with him! He's smart and funny. If I could afford the long-distance b=
ills, I'd call him every week, just to find out what he's up to.

As with any fine tool or piece of machinery, I need to take care of them so=
they last me a long time. When I'm finished using a particular tool for t=
he time being, I wipe it off and put it back in its slot in the sponge, hea=
d up so I can see the shape. If the handle gets excessively wet and muddy,=
I clean it off and wipe it with a little mineral oil. I've been using Bis=
ons for about five years now, after listening to all the good commentary in=
Clayart.

I have no idea of the circumstances under which your Bison tool broke, but =
I suggest reviewing how you handle your tools. Bison tools are as much an =
investment in your productivity as your wheel or kiln. They're expensive a=
nd worth every penny, in my opinion.

Something I've tried to live by: "A poor workman always blames his tools." =
And, emphatically *YES*, I am loyal to Phil Poburka and Bison tools. I th=
ink I'd just sit down and cry if I broke one.

Be careful,

Tig Dupre
in Port Orchard, WA, USA

Vince Pitelka on mon 24 dec 07


Collete wrote"
> I bought a Bison tool at NCECA and the first time I used it to trim as =
I
> was using my finger to clean out clay scraps it cut me. That was the en=
d
> for me! Too sharp and dangerous. I have a small stash of dolan tools an=
d
> when they run out I'll get the new Axner goovey tools. Hope some day
> Dolan comes back to us.

Collete -
I don't mean to sound flippant, but have you also abandoned all of your
kitchen knives after discovering that they are sharp enough to cut you?=20
Trimming tools only work really well when they are sharp, and it tends to
be a pain in the rear when you have to get up and sharpen them all the
time. Phil's STAY sharp, for years and years.

Someone else posted about the flexible metal ribs being banned in a
studio. That is overreacting, but I have seen people cut themselves with
metal ribs by running their fingers along the edge of the rib to remove
the accumulated clay, especially after using the rib to scrape the surfac=
e
of a leather-hard pot or sculpture. People don't realize that when they
hold a metal rib at a consistent angle and scrape the surface of a pot,
they are sharpening the rib.

There are lots of dangerous things in ever studio, and we simply need to
remain conscious of the risk and use those things safely. Trimming tools
and metal ribs can both be sharp enough to cut us. I'm not trying to tal=
k
you into using Bison tools, Collete, but I do think it odd that a
craftsperson would buy an expensive and specialized cutting tool and then
abandon it after discovering that it is sharp.
- Vince

--=20
Vince Pitelka
Appalachian Center for Craft
Tennessee Technological University
vpitelka@dtccom.net
http://iweb.tntech.edu/wpitelka/

Charlie Hightower on tue 25 dec 07


Chief Ming uses a white colored knife on his cooking
show. I always assumed it was some kind of hard
plastic. Ceramic tools sound very clever. We all know
how sharp porcelain can be.

Charles Hightower
www.hightowerpottery.com
Evansville, IN

--- Lee wrote:

> If you are a knife nut like I am, you know that hard
> does not
> necessarily mean sharp. Hard holds its edge
> longer, but you can make
> a sharper edge with softer metal. You'd think
> every one would know
> this in comparing stainless knives with
> non-stainless steel.
>
> You just have to sharpen non-stainless more often.
>
> My favorite knives in the kitchen are
> Japanese knives you have
> to keep dry so they don't rust. I sharpen them
> about ever other
> week. There is something satisfying in taking
> proper care of your
> tools.
>
> You can get ceramic knives that are very
> sharp. They are
> popular in Japan. They are brittle too. Not sure
> what they are
> like to sharpen. Will find out.
>
> --
> Lee in Mashiko, Tochigi Japan
> http://mashikopots.blogspot.com/
>
> "Tea is nought but this: first you heat the water,
> then you make the
> tea. Then you drink it properly. That is all you
> need to know."
> --Sen No Rikyu
> "Let the beauty we love be what we do." - Rumi
>
>
______________________________________________________________________________
> Clayart members may send postings to:
> clayart@lsv.ceramics.org
>
> You may look at the archives for the list, post
> messages, or change your
> subscription settings here:
> http://www.acers.org/cic/clayart/
>
> Moderator of the list is Mel Jacobson who may be
> reached at melpots2@visi.com
>

Lee on tue 25 dec 07


If you are a knife nut like I am, you know that hard does not
necessarily mean sharp. Hard holds its edge longer, but you can make
a sharper edge with softer metal. You'd think every one would know
this in comparing stainless knives with non-stainless steel.

You just have to sharpen non-stainless more often.

My favorite knives in the kitchen are Japanese knives you have
to keep dry so they don't rust. I sharpen them about ever other
week. There is something satisfying in taking proper care of your
tools.

You can get ceramic knives that are very sharp. They are
popular in Japan. They are brittle too. Not sure what they are
like to sharpen. Will find out.

--
Lee in Mashiko, Tochigi Japan
http://mashikopots.blogspot.com/

"Tea is nought but this: first you heat the water, then you make the
tea. Then you drink it properly. That is all you need to know."
--Sen No Rikyu
"Let the beauty we love be what we do." - Rumi

William & Susan Schran User on wed 26 dec 07


On 12/25/07 7:25 PM, "Lee" wrote:

> http://kyoceraadvancedceramics.com/ceramic/
>
> Look at their chart. As I was mentioning, stainless is not as sharp
> as non-stainless steel and ceramic is sharper than carbon steel.
> They list it above carbide, just below diamond.

My wife got me one of these knives for Christmas.
Amazingly sharp!
Saw them being made on tv program "How it's Made".
Made from zirconium sand collected in Australia.
Blanks are made/fired at factory, then sent to smaller shops for sharpening
with diamond disks.


--
William "Bill" Schran
wschran@cox.net
wschran@nvcc.edu
http://www.creativecreekartisans.com

Lee on wed 26 dec 07


On Dec 25, 2007 11:47 PM, Charlie Hightower wrote:

>We all know
> how sharp porcelain can be.

http://kyoceraadvancedceramics.com/ceramic/

Look at their chart. As I was mentioning, stainless is not as sharp
as non-stainless steel and ceramic is sharper than carbon steel.
They list it above carbide, just below diamond. You can buy them on
Amazon.




--
Lee in Mashiko, Tochigi Japan
http://mashikopots.blogspot.com/

"Tea is nought but this: first you heat the water, then you make the
tea. Then you drink it properly. That is all you need to know."
--Sen No Rikyu
"Let the beauty we love be what we do." - Rumi

Lee on thu 27 dec 07


On Dec 26, 2007 10:50 PM, William & Susan Schran User wrote:

>
> My wife got me one of these knives for Christmas.
> Amazingly sharp!
> Saw them being made on tv program "How it's Made".
> Made from zirconium sand collected in Australia.
> Blanks are made/fired at factory, then sent to smaller shops for sharpening
> with diamond disks.

Bill, Have you used it yet? When I was helping my sewing
teacher clean her furnance air filters in her dishwash, I noticed her
ceramic knife.

My Furasato (hometown) is Sakai City, outside of Osaka.
They were once knowed for their Swords and then Rifles, but now they
are known for their knives.

Boker makes folding versions. I want one!

--
Lee in Mashiko, Tochigi Japan
http://mashikopots.blogspot.com/

"Tea is nought but this: first you heat the water, then you make the
tea. Then you drink it properly. That is all you need to know."
--Sen No Rikyu
"Let the beauty we love be what we do." - Rumi

William & Susan Schran User on thu 27 dec 07


On 12/26/07 10:31 PM, "Lee" wrote:

>> My wife got me one of these knives for Christmas.
>> Amazingly sharp!
>> Saw them being made on tv program "How it's Made".
>> Made from zirconium sand collected in Australia.
>> Blanks are made/fired at factory, then sent to smaller shops for sharpening
>> with diamond disks.
>
> Bill, Have you used it yet? When I was helping my sewing
> teacher clean her furnance air filters in her dishwash, I noticed her
> ceramic knife.

I have, sliced the roast for dinner that evening.
Cut through the meat wonderfully, easy thin slices.

A caution in the instructions that the knife is to be used for straight cuts
only.
Like Bison tools, very hard, very sharp but brittle.

--
William "Bill" Schran
wschran@cox.net
wschran@nvcc.edu
http://www.creativecreekartisans.com

Lee Love on thu 27 dec 07


On 12/27/07, William & Susan Schran User wrote:

> A caution in the instructions that the knife is to be used for straight cuts
> only.
> Like Bison tools, very hard, very sharp but brittle.

I think I wouldn't want one as a pocket knife (or in the
studio) but only as a kitchen knife.

I lost my Gerber Multi-pliers and my Buck Ultralite down
at the Mississippi the day the I35W bridge fell. Haven't replaced
the Ultralite yet. They are indestructible.

--
Lee in Mashiko, Tochigi Japan
http://mashikopots.blogspot.com/

"Tea is nought but this: first you heat the water, then you make the
tea. Then you drink it properly. That is all you need to know."
--Sen No Rikyu
"Let the beauty we love be what we do." - Rumi

mel jacobson on wed 14 oct 09


Dear Mel,
Please post this message for me,
thank you, judy yamaguchi

SUBJ: #38 Bison Tool

Hello All Clayarters,

I've just recently treated myself to one of these beauties.
After Six years as a hobby potter and many many store bought
clay tools, I splurged on a Bison. Thanks for admonitions
about not dropping it. I promise not to do that. It comes in a
lovely olde west kind of box.

Well, I love it. You can't go too fast or you'll get chatter.
If you are impatient and trim wet
you'll get gummy clay crud buildup.
But, the edge looks so professional
on the footring.

If you are thinking of treating yourself to something really fine, do it.
You will take better care of it and the respect will be mutual.

The process of ordering is pleasant and Phil is a gentleman.

Thanks,
Judy in Northern California
A lurker for five years...
You all say everything that needs to be said about clay.





from: minnetonka, mn
website: http://www.visi.com/~melpots/
clayart link: http://www.visi.com/~melpots/clayart.html
new book: http://www.21stcenturykilns.com

Vince Pitelka on fri 13 nov 09


About a month ago I interviewed Phil Poburka on the phone. I had 25
questions written out, and they involved into hundreds of questions and a
marvelous stream-of-consciousness conversation. Phil is truly a fascinating
individual. My next Clay Times column is about Phil and Bison tools, and i=
s
the distillation of that conversation, although I think I could have writte=
n
a book based on all the things he told me. Look for the next issue of Clay
Times.
- Vince

Vince Pitelka
Appalachian Center for Craft
Tennessee Tech University
vpitelka@dtccom.net; wpitelka@tntech.edu
http://iweb.tntech.edu/wpitelka

celia hirsh on tue 27 jul 10


I just want to take the opportunity to sing the praises of Bison
Tools. I've been using them for the last few years, since I returned
to clay, and although I've found them to be without compare, I had
forgotten just how extraordinary they are, until I stupidly sent most
of them back to Phil for a sharpening, leaving me stuck with the
alternative trimming tools that dragged through my clay, doubling my
trimming time.

If I were a poet, I'd write an "Ode to Bison". I'd find metaphors to
describe the precision they offer, the ease with which they penetrate,
the comfort of the handle as it nestles in my hand, the pleasure as
they do my bidding and allow my work to reflect what is in my mind's
eye. Since I'm no poet, this is the best I can do.

Thank you Phil, for a product that delivers more than it promises.

Celia Hirsh
www.hirshpottery.com