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mrcasey

Mathematical Definition of "Centered"

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What is a good definition of centered clay? (I'm especially curious about Tyler's and Baymore's  opinions)

(1)  What is the mathematical/physical definition of a centered piece of clay? and
(2)  Why does coning up and down center a piece of clay?  

 

 

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I've no answer to your question, but it's interesting to discover that people 'out there' (i.e. non-practitioners) do find this sort of thing interesting...

Regulating rotation speed in wheel throwing: Effects of mass and shape

...to one side, but relevant, from the Journal of Archaeological Science:

A proxy of potters’ throwing skill: ceramic vessels considered in terms of mechanical stress - (PDF)

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For me, centering is to coax the clay into a shape that is equidistant from the rotational center of the wheel head.

As for coning, it is a wheel throwing wedging technique that helps to align platelets and remove air bubbles from the clay. The technique of raising the clay then pushing it down achieves this, and at the same time the gradual movement of the form outward from the center helps to center the clay. Many texts have called this coning "Mastering" as a preliminary step to wedging. For the beginner, being able to cone up and down, is a skill process as it helps to understand the amount of pressure, water lubrication and coordination needed to get the clay to move for the potter.

All of this is in my understanding, and I am sure others may elucidate much better than I.

best,

Pres

Benzine likes this

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aaarrrgggghh--no Like button for Pres. Guess I'll have to use my words. Thanks for the description-simple & to the point, absent the mathematical stuff, anyway.

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Old lady, up until a few days ago, I did not have a thumbs up/like button. Something to do with the account software on my name. So Lee and I had reason to be exasperated. However, as you can see, all is good.

 

best,

Pres

Min likes this

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I always thought centering distributed the clay evenly so that when the walls were raised, they were even in height, but this Morning I watched a video of Ben Owens beating a BIG lumpy ball of clay into an even shape and then pounding his fist into it with the wheel turning slowly to open it .  So, was that clay centered?  Or is he strong enough with large enough hands that he centered the pounded open ring and went from there?

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