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three minute teapot

updated fri 1 sep 00


David Cuzick on wed 30 aug 00

I have written before that I am more interested in making good pots =
than fast pots, but here is an exercise that I have done to help with =
skill and to keep you loose.
Try making a 3 minute teapot. That is a tea pot that is thrown and =
assembled in 3 minutes (actually I now make them in 4 minutes, with the =
extra times you can make a really functional teapot).
First get all of your tools out in front of you. You will need a cut =
off wire, calipers, wooden tool, and sponge. I use about 3 or 4 lbs. of =
clay. Time starts when you start to center the clay. All parts are =
thrown off the hump. First make a lid, then the spout, set them aside. =
Now open the clay and bring a ribbon of clay to the outside edge. Cut =
the ribbon off about 1" down, you now have a ribbon of clay,that is a =
very short (1" high) cylinder with no top and no bottom. Set it aside. =
Make the body of the tea pot with the remainder of the clay, making sure =
that the opening is the correct size to fit the lid. Now cut a hole for =
the spout while the body of the pot is still on the wheel. Add the spout =
to the pot body over the cut hole. This is easier if you are using stiff =
clay or the body is a little thick. Now cut the ribbon so that you have =
a long strip of clay, hold one end and give a few pulls to even out the =
edge that was cut off. Add this to the pot to make a handle. Put the top =
in place to see if it fits and you have a complete tea pot in 3 or 4 =
(slow) minutes.
A teapot made like this is more an exercise than a wonderful teapot, =
though I have gotten good enough at it to make a relative functional =
teapot in the 4 min. period, I even have time for a little decoration. I =
think that I first saw this done in a work shop given by Wm. Hunt the =
old editor of CM (I could be mistaken about that). Anyway it is fun and =
makes for a great demo at work shops.=20
PS. I use to make these pots and once fire them in a salt kiln and sell =
them for $20.
David Cuzick