[Clayart] Clayart Digest, Vol 74, Issue 48

vpitelka at dtccom.net vpitelka at dtccom.net
Fri Jan 21 15:25:46 UTC 2022

Hi Jeff - 
Sorry to hear about your slab-roller.  I think that all three brands are good - Shimpo, Bailey, and North Star.  My work is all about slabs, and I love my little 18" North Star "PortaRoller."  It's called a table-top, and I have it bolted down to a workbench.  I believe strongly in eliminating the linear grain structure that results from rolling in one direction, so I roll my slabs on the thick side, and then cross-roll them with a 24" rolling pin and shims.  For me, it takes very little time and I like the results.  Clay King has the 18" PortaRoller for $686 including freight.  The same roller minus the boards is $596 including freight.

For the scale of your studio production, I would think you'd want a larger unit.  I've used the 24" and 30" stand-alone North Star slab rollers, and I like them, but if I was going to get a larger slab roller, it would be a hard choice between a North Star and a Shimpo.  And if I wanted maximum efficiency I'd get a wide one so I could roll the slab through, turn it 90 degrees, lower the rollers slightly, and roll it through again to eliminate linear grain structure.

Clay King usually has the best prices, and freight is included.  This got me curious, so I checked the price on the larger ones.  The North Star 30" Standard is $1191 including shipping.  The 30" Shimpo from Clay King is only $906 including freight.  Clay King doesn't carry Bailey.  The Bailey 30" purchased from Bailey is $1500 including shipping.  All three of these include the table.  If you have an appropriate table, you can buy the Bailey or the North Star for a lower price without the table.  Shimpo doesn't seem to offer that option.  

It is important to point out that the Shimpo is not made by the Shimpo company.  It is made by a company in Taiwan that also makes slab rollers for Axner and some others.  But people seem happy with the Shimpo slab-roller, and of course Shimpo has always had a good reputation for quality and reliability.  
- Vince

Vince Pitelka
Potter, Writer, Teacher
Chapel Hill, NC
vpitelka at dtccom.net

-----Original Message-----
From: Clayart <clayart-bounces at lists.clayartworld.com> On Behalf Of Jeff Lawrence
Sent: Friday, January 21, 2022 8:07 AM
To: Clayart international pottery discussion forum <clayart at lists.clayartworld.com>
Subject: Re: [Clayart] Clayart Digest, Vol 74, Issue 48

Slab roller died and I'm baffled by the options for replacement.
Anybody have experience with both countertop and free-standing units?
Any kudos or warnings re Shimpo, Bailey, North Star?
Thanks in advance,
Jeff Lawrence
jefflawr at gmail.com
Jeff Lawrence
jefflawr at gmail.com

On Fri, Jan 21, 2022 at 5:02 AM <clayart-request at lists.clayartworld.com>

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> Today's Topics:
>    1. Re: hand building (ronroy at ca.inter.net)
> ----------------------------------------------------------------------
> Message: 1
> Date: Thu, 20 Jan 2022 16:36:24 -0500
> From: ronroy at ca.inter.net
> To: William Schran <wschran at twc.com>, Clayart international pottery
>         discussion forum <clayart at lists.clayartworld.com>
> Subject: Re: [Clayart] hand building
> Message-ID: <20220120163624.782056pv101pbjrs at webmail.ca.inter.net>
> Content-Type: text/plain; charset=ISO-8859-1; DelSp="Yes";
>         format="flowed"
> Pinching can give real insights into forming on the wheel. In both 
> cases if you thin the walls and don't let the form expand the walls 
> move up. One of my 1st favorite pots was illustrated in a Potters Book 
> by B Leach - a pinched tea bowl with straight sides.
> I think we should try to keep our minds open to all possibilities, 
> there are wonderful examples of work made with all techniques and 
> combinations.
> RR
> Quoting William Schran <wschran at twc.com>:
> > I also in my first semester ceramics class began with pinch pots, 
> > beginning with simple bowl forms moving to hollow spheres than 
> > making a whistle with a sphere.At the start of the second semester, 
> > beginning wheel throwing during the intro class I would have them 
> > make a pinch pot and talk about that process of moving the clay up 
> > from the bottom working towards an even wall thickness. I would then 
> > demo the basic wheel throwing process and relate actions to what 
> > they did with the pinch pot, but now instead of hands turning the 
> > clay, the wheel turns the clay....
> > Bill
> >
> > William Schranwschran at twc.com703-505-1617
> >
> >       -----------------------------------------From: "Snail Scott"
> > To: "Clayart international pottery discussion forum"
> > Cc:
> > Sent: Wednesday January 19 2022 1:31:55PM
> > Subject: Re: [Clayart] hand building
> >
> >  > On Jan 16, 2022, at 10:29 AM, mel jacobson  wrote:
> >  > my discussion on hand building was, and is a reaction  > to those 
> > that work at home, small kiln, and hand build their work  > in clay. 
> > It is often overlooked. Hobby potter sort of thing?
> >
> >  Most of my students had their first and last experience with 
> > handbuilding in the third grade, or so, making pinch pots. They 
> > imbibe the notion that the wheel is for the big kids, and 
> > handbuilding gets set aside forever as a lesser form, because they 
> > never learned its true potential.
> >
> >  I start my intro college course with pinching, and I can see the 
> > immediate reaction?'Oh, I know this, it?s kid stuff.' It?s not.
> > Kids are actually really bad at it, as they lack the manual 
> > dexterity and finger strength to make proper use of it. Pinch pots 
> > are all simple squishing between thumb and finger. Easy - pressure 
> > makes things thinner and wider. I call it the ?Road Kill Effect: the 
> > more it gets squished, the thinner it gets and the further it 
> > spreads. Icky but memorable.
> >
> >  "Now, control for consistent thickness and curvature; make a 
> > hemisphere." ("Why does it keep getting too thin and floppy?" "Road 
> > Kill Effect!?) ?Now, take that hemisphere, and make it a sphere.
> > Bring that rim back inward, keeping a consistent thickness and 
> > curvature.? How to make it thicker and shorter, instead of wider and 
> > thinner? 'Why does it keep folding?!?? (Now reality sets in!) ?Now, 
> > pinch a cube. Make sure the walls are the same thickness right to 
> > the corners.? "Make it low and wide?now make it tall; reverse the 
> > proportions without rotating the form or cutting and attaching.
> > Move without removal.? Not kid stuff after all. Very few 
> > only-wheel-throwers, even with a lifetime of experience with clay, 
> > are any good at it.
> >
> >  I start the course with pinching, not as an end in itself, but 
> > because it teaches how the material responds to the maker. It?s 
> > fundamental. Teach your fingers physics. Pinching is its own 
> > technique, but also the means to augment every other technique:
> > coiling, slab, and wheel. Students who get good at pinching will 
> > learn every other method faster, and use it with more versatility; 
> > even the wheel. The wheel is just a tool for bringing the clay to 
> > your hands, instead of moving your hands to the clay. Squeezing 
> > perpendicular to the plane makes the clay thin and/or wide; 
> > compression along the plane brings it in. ?Pulling' a wall combines 
> > both. Bellying; collaring; all just pinching, with a power assist.
> >
> >  -Snail
> >
> >
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> >
> Ron Roy
> ronroy at ca.inter.net
> Web page ronroy.net
> End of Clayart Digest, Vol 74, Issue 48
> ***************************************
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