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Ben

Creative ways to get clay out of a 5gal bucket?

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I have a 5gal bucket full of clay. It was trimming scraps full to the top and reslaked. (about 10 years ago) I'd rather not dig it out by the handfull if I can avoid it.

Does anyone have any creative ways to get the clay out of the bucket?

If so, I'd love to hear them.

Thanks,

Ben

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This won't solve your current problem but when you start your new bucket, line the bucket with an old pillow case. Only fill the bucket part way with clay and water, then pull out the pillow case and enclosed clay. Allow the wet clay still inside the pillow case to drain and dry outside on a warm, breezy summer day elevated off the ground in some way (a dish rack possibly). Next day, turn it over and allow to drain and dry on the other side (the previously down side). Then stomp on the clay to remove the air...or just wedge it...

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This won't solve your current problem but when you start your new bucket, line the bucket with an old pillow case. Only fill the bucket part way with clay and water, then pull out the pillow case and enclosed clay. Allow the wet clay still inside the pillow case to drain and dry outside on a warm, breezy summer day elevated off the ground in some way (a dish rack possibly). Next day, turn it over and allow to drain and dry on the other side (the previously down side). Then stomp on the clay to remove the air...or just wedge it...

 

 

Seems like way back when I did this, I started the next bucket with a thick black trash can liner. Seems like I say since I must have processed that clay and used it. Probably why this bucket got pushed to the side and is still down in the basement.

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I guess this could qualify as creative . . .

 

Is the clay dry or wet? If dry, could you drop the bucket a few times to loosen it up/crack the mass and then dump it out? If wet, and you don't mind losing the bucket, you could drill a couple of large holes in the bottom and invert the bucket, let gravity do its thing. The holes will help break the seal of the clay and the bucket, or break the vacuum.

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Since you can lift and invert the container wear rubber gloves, turn the container on its side, on to the wedging table, dig it out with a stick or the large spoon as suggested and wedge it up. Store it in plastic bags ready for throwing.

 

 

 

I edited this post.

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I have a 5gal bucket full of clay. It was trimming scraps full to the top and reslaked. (about 10 years ago) I'd rather not dig it out by the handfull if I can avoid it.

Does anyone have any creative ways to get the clay out of the bucket?

If so, I'd love to hear them.

Thanks,

Ben

 

 

I don't know if it's considered a "creative" way, but I just use a giant serving/cooking spoon to dish out the slop and get it to the wedging board. When it gets down to the dregs, I go ahead and scrape with my hands or a kitchen spatula, or just throw more water in the bucket to rinse down the sides.

 

Or do you mean that the clay has all air-dried?

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The clay is wet and feels a little bit softer than what I use for throwing. Too stiff to be mixed up, not so tiff as to require adding water before wedging.

 

I'd like to save the bucket but that isn't mandatory.

 

Whattya think about this?

I was thinking I could make a hole to the bottom of the bucket as a vacuum break vent, then either turn the bucket upside down and bang on the floor or insert the garden hose and pack it in tight, invert and bang on the floor while the water hose applied water pressure to the bottom of the bucket/clay interface.

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I guess this could qualify as creative . . .

 

Is the clay dry or wet? If dry, could you drop the bucket a few times to loosen it up/crack the mass and then dump it out? If wet, and you don't mind losing the bucket, you could drill a couple of large holes in the bottom and invert the bucket, let gravity do its thing. The holes will help break the seal of the clay and the bucket, or break the vacuum.

 

 

I love that video. Thanks for posting it! As for using explosives to get the clay out of the bucket, use a metal rod to push a hole down to the bottom of the bucket then lite and drop 3 M80s down the hole and stand back... way back.

 

Jim

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You get the metal handle from another old five gallon bucket. You squeeze the heavy guage wire into more of a "u" or a "d", and then scoop away. As you get down to the bottom, you bonk the bucket on the floor, and more clay will come away from the sides.

TJR[Tom]

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Ben, your question actually made my brain hurt ... thinking of various bags and buckets of mystery clay I have in various hiding spots that I have to dispose of.

 

Question one is always and ever ... hmmmm, what clay is this?

Question two ... is it good clay or discard from mold making or what??

Question three ... how old is this stuff?

Question four ... what color is it and what cone is it?

Question five ... how much do I care ??

Question six ... how bad does it smell?

 

Solution ... I store it in hopes I will miraculously remember what it is .... which of course in a couple months ... leads right back to question one.

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If you don't care about a $2 5-gal bucket, then why not put a new blade in your utility knife and just cut the bucket off? It's not like a bucket is indestructible smile.gif Seems like the quickest solution IMO. Other than that, I like the idea of flipping over and drilling a small hole - I'd even try putting an air hose up to that hole and see if the air pressure might speed up the delivery. Having done this before with clay at a consistency like you described, I've had success with putting the bucket on it's side, then take a mallet to the walls to make a little gap between clay and plastic all the way around, then flip entirely and it magically comes out since the weight will break it free from the bottom after a slight tap.

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This won't solve your current problem but when you start your new bucket, line the bucket with an old pillow case. Only fill the bucket part way with clay and water, then pull out the pillow case and enclosed clay. Allow the wet clay still inside the pillow case to drain and dry outside on a warm, breezy summer day elevated off the ground in some way (a dish rack possibly). Next day, turn it over and allow to drain and dry on the other side (the previously down side). Then stomp on the clay to remove the air...or just wedge it...

 

 

 

 

Take that pillow case containing clay and water and dry it out by placing it on plaster bat and rotating it . Works great

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Perkos got it right-cut the bucket off and move on. Buckets are cheap to free. In my 40 years with clay I have never bought a 5 gallon bucket. I have at least 30 of them-painters are looking to get rid of them.

Mark

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Perkos got it right-cut the bucket off and move on. Buckets are cheap to free. In my 40 years with clay I have never bought a 5 gallon bucket. I have at least 30 of them-painters are looking to get rid of them.

Mark

 

 

Potters from my generation tend to call them "Dunkin Donuts Buckets". That's because the donut fillings for stuff like jelly donuts and Boston Kreme came in white, 5 gallon buckets,... and the stores needed to get rid of them at an alarming rate each week. Free for the taking. Sometimes smelled great ;)src="http://ceramicartsdaily.org/community/public/style_emoticons/default/wink.gif"> .

 

Many food service businesses still get stuff like pickles in them and you can still get them for free. Sometime smells bad! B)src="http://ceramicartsdaily.org/community/public/style_emoticons/default/cool.gif">

 

best,

 

.............john

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Perkos got it right-cut the bucket off and move on. Buckets are cheap to free. In my 40 years with clay I have never bought a 5 gallon bucket. I have at least 30 of them-painters are looking to get rid of them.

Mark

 

 

Potters from my generation tend to call them "Dunkin Donuts Buckets". That's because the donut fillings for stuff like jelly donuts and Boston Kreme came in white, 5 gallon buckets,... and the stores needed to get rid of them at an alarming rate each week. Free for the taking. Sometimes smelled great ;)src="http://ceramicartsdaily.org/community/public/style_emoticons/default/wink.gif"> .

 

Many food service businesses still get stuff like pickles in them and you can still get them for free. Sometime smells bad! B)src="http://ceramicartsdaily.org/community/public/style_emoticons/default/cool.gif">

 

best,

 

.............john

 

 

Very true. I worked in a bakery one summer, and those places go through jelly and other such filling in insane quantities.

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Put a little water in the bucket until clay become slightly flexible. put the bucket on its side and roll it back and forth so that the bucket flexes into an oval. this will release the clay from the sides of the bucket. put the bucket upside down and pound on the bottom with your fist. usually this will cause the clay to release from the bottom of the bucket and form a sloppy sticky mass on the floor of your studio.

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Freeze the entire bucket.

Invert the bucket. (this may be enough)

Pour some warm water on the outside of the bucket.

Remove bucket from clay.

Allow clay to thaw.

 

 

 

Put a little water in the bucket until clay become slightly flexible. put the bucket on its side and roll it back and forth so that the bucket flexes into an oval. this will release the clay from the sides of the bucket. put the bucket upside down and pound on the bottom with your fist. usually this will cause the clay to release from the bottom of the bucket and form a sloppy sticky mass on the floor of your studio.

 

 

Oh, I like these 2 VERY much!

Thanks all.

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