Jump to content

Recommended Posts

I'm looking to create larger work and could use some suggestions about aheat gun. I'm using Standard Ceramics 182 stoneware. Not interested in a propane torch. Any suggestions about the value of a heat gun over a hair dryer?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The heat gun costs more, is heavier, and can ignite paper and cloth and will melt plastic bats and spash pans; the hair dryer does not have those qualities.  :D 
 
I have both and prefer the hair dryer because it is lighter and I don't have to worry about where I place it when I am not holding it. 
 
LT

47runner likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The heat gun costs more, is heavier, and can ignite paper and cloth and will melt plastic bats and spash pans; the hair dryer does not have those qualities.  :D 

 

I have both and prefer the hair dryer because it is lighter and I don't have to worry about where I place it when I am not holding it. 

 

LT

I agree with above-I have both to.Both have their place but LT summed it up well.

47runner likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

A hair dryer is sufficient. Just make sure it has push buttons and not a slide switch. I bought a cheap one with a sliding switch and have some difficulty at times pushing it with wet fingers.

 

Paul

47runner likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Heat gun shoots hot air. The hair dryer may be purchased with multiple settings, including no heat for much less. There are times when this would be preferable. When throwing large, if throwing dry, it really does not take much. I leave the wheel running slow in the summer, with open windows. The  moving air will help to dry the pot enough that I can make my next pulls and shape in 30 min.

 

 

best,

Pres

1515art likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The cheap one from Harbor Freight is a good option. It also comes in handy to do stoppers and knobs dries clay pretty quick cut off the hump attach and no smudging or prints. Please take into consideration the cautions mentioned by others. Also if you use a heat gun keep it pointed away from others. It can even melt splash pans when left unattended. Can easily start a fire in no time quick. I have a fan I place to assist in drying when making sectionals. I do use heat gun for very large bowls and shoulders of large bottles.

47runner likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm a heat gun user... personal preference, for me the heat is even and controllable. I would only use a torch working with very big pieces (more than 100#) where it would take forever any other way to get the results i need. Same thing with a hair dryer, they are great for smaller pieces and because the heat is much less you probably won't find yourself over drying and losing plasticity. Kind of like the three bears for my use, the heat gun is just right. I can quickly dry small pieces, finials can be thrown and trimmed in minutes. Throwing cylinders I can make useful changes in the wall stiffness in a minute with my heat gun and direct the heat to specific (streatigic) areas in less time than that. They can be dangerous...they are hot, use caution again it's hot and that's kind of the point so use some common sense.

 

I've gotten all my heat guns from sears, the big red one and they run around $50. Last years under heavy studio abuse and blow hot, very hot and cold air. From my experience lesser heat guns have a short life and hair dryers die fast as well, but realisticly weren't designed for shop abuse so you get what you pay for.

47runner likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I recently purchased the "better" Harbor Freight heat gun and I like it.  I needed a new heat gun for studio and I decided on this model solely because it comes with a screw-on base that allows you to use it hands-free.

image_27071.jpg

47runner likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I use both. The heat gun primarily for speeding up the drying of Underglaze to a paste consistency for silk screening. I also use it for heating up occasional pieces that I need to reglaze to help the glaze stick to the already glazed piece.

 

The blow dryer I use for firming up clay pieces to continue working on them. I also use it at times to make the glaze dry quicker on something, like the inside of a box form which tends to take longer to dry and I get bored waiting to move on to the next step.

 

I did learn to never use either tool to speed up the drying of a silkscreen... now that was an expensive lesson. I had to remake the entire screen.

 

T

47runner likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This has been a very helpful discussion on how each option serves a variety of situations. I really appreciate everyone who contributed. Thank you so much!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Bought this for the wife and it'll melt the sun:

 

http://www.homedepot.com/p/Milwaukee-750VT-Industrial-Heat-Gun-10035/301090982

 

Bought this for me and love it: 

 

http://www.homedepot.com/p/Wagner-Furno-300-Heat-Gun-0503059/206723935

 

It has a slide switch but is big enough to move even when sloppy. I like it and weights the same as a hair dryer. Her's is heavy but will last forever. Her's is a bit different and costs a lot more than that one.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

47 i am still a student. the heat gun allowed me to go tall and big bellied. i borrowed it from the sculpture dept. (simple, new, very light) honestly if you are careful there is no need for any melting to happen. before the heat gun i tried many different things trying to go taller - different clays, different grogs. but nothing worked till i used the heat gun. 

 

no way would i work with a hair dryer myself to make big pieces during the rains.

 

however

 

this is winter rainy season (yes we had rain last week). heat gun worked GREAT!!. i even experimented with throwing a bowl and heat gunning it and then trimming it - all in one sitting. it is so wet here that even after a week under plastic the pot was too wet to trim. 

 

dont know how things would dry in summer. under 100+ degrees temp. would the hair dryer be enough? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use.