search  current discussion  categories  tools & equipment - misc 

favorite tool - dianne's mention

updated tue 23 nov 04


pdp1@EARTHLINK.NET on sun 21 nov 04

Hi Dianne,

I happen to know the fellow who makes these, and I am
certain you would benifit to contact him and to talk with
him about your troubles. He would be happy to talk or e-mail
with you to go over how these Tools are to be used, and, for
what they sould be used, and, how it is you may find
satisfactions and Trimming pleasures, instead of distress.

I do know these Tools are deliberate - meaning, they are
intentionally made, and, that they anticipate intentional

If someone transferes to them instead, the habits as may
have seemed tolerable with other, very different Tools,
there may be disappointments for not having understood how
to use "these" Tools, and, how to do so intentionally.

These are not casual, incidental items to be confused with
something else or with something very different, merely
because they are in the same larger Catagory OF being
'Tools'...anymore than say a good Draft Horse should be
asked to answer to how one treats a Cat, oweing to how they
both are Mammals. these matters, works both ways.

If you were having 'chattering', you needed to use a much
slower Wheel speed ( say like you would have on a
Kick-Wheel), and or, to make sure you DO do so untill you
have learned to use the Tools surely, and then, to let your
Wheel speed increase naturally to follow your Trimming
competance, and not for your Wheel speed to try and lead and
outpace it.

Likely too, your Clay was being rushed into being Trimmed,
and was still too 'gummy'.

These two factors are what one either elects TO have, to
obtain "chatter", or, are what one eschews to forthrightly
Trim nicely, smoothly, and with alacrity.

Many Potters spent years with dull Tools as did little more
than a 'bobby-pin' would do, and so rushing their Trimming
while the Clay is still way too 'wet' or gummy, and running
their Wheels at a terrific speed just to try and get the
things to trim at all...and...


Begin at the beginning...

What are we doing?


Trimming? - or instead pushing something through a wet mass
to remove some unwanted part of that mass?

If "Trimming"....then...if it IS a Tool which 'cuts'...we
want to do our Trimming when the Clay is amenible TO being
cut...that is, generally, when it is in some range of
Leather Hard. AND with a "slow" Wheel speed.

Then, the Trimming one does, slices off yards of thin little
ribbons, and the Clay is not sticking to the Tool or causing

Anyway, you should call or write their maker and talk with
him...he would be glad to guide you to the satisfactions you
deserve, and, for you to treat these Tools in the manner
they deserve. That way, both you and the Tools, shall be

Best wishes,

el ve

----- Original Message -----
From: "Dianne Kirwin"

> sure wish i had the same results you all seem to have with
> trimming tools!
> all it did was make me feel completely inept! could not
use the
> blankety-blank thing without chattering and destroying the
surface of
> every pot!!
> i read all the recommendations about how to use it and
tried all degrees
> of dryness of the clay with no success. (the thing
finally broke...
> can't say i was sorry!)
> i wonder, am i the only one bison-challenged??
> dianne
> from denver, colorado