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Teresa Nunes

Sanding, polishing and other finishing techniques for porcelain jewellery

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Hi everyone

I am a currently teaching myself to work with porcelain. I am about to take a general ceramic course soon, but there are still a lot of specific techniques involved in making small ceramic pieces, that I want to learn.

I am making necklace beads and earrings and I have a few questions regarding finishing techniques:

- Do you sand or polish greenware, or just use a wet sponge or paint brush to smooth little rough areas? Some of my pieces are really small and have angles so I would need something kind of small, pointy to get to some of the corners. Any tools that you can recommend?

The pieces are fairly smooth already, but there are some details on the surface that I would like to smooth, specially in the joins.

Any jewellery/small piece makers out there that can give me some advice?




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I've used dental tools to detail designs into my woodturnings with success. Just started doing this on some stoneware and it works well.

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On my pendants (and other work) I slightly round off the really sharp edges, working both sides, and dull any super pointed bits. Sharp edges could cut a finger after being fired. I use very fine sanding sponges and cut them into small pieces and in whatever shapes I need to get into crooks and crannies.  A too big or too heavy sanding surface can break thin jewelry pieces. Wear a mask with a proper fit and filter. I collect the dust in a tray directly below my hand work and frequently empty that into a reclaim container.  Before glazing I use a lightly damp sponge to wipe off any residual dust.   I also use dental tools for some detail work. To keep holes clear I use a little wax around the inside/outside edges if needed, and glaze using with a pipe cleaner inserted to fill/block the hole.  

Edited by LeeU

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