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#81 Chris Throws Pots

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Posted 21 April 2013 - 01:54 PM

You don't need a pugmill. Is there a community studio in your area? I manage a non-profit community studio with a pugmill. A few local small volume potters bring their trimming scraps by once or twice a year and get a receipt of donation to use as a deduction on their taxes. With fresh clay as cheap as it is, this seems much easier than investing the time, energy and money into a pugmill. Thought it is dependent on the proximity of a registered 501©(3) studio that wants the scrap.

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#82 Mark C.

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Posted 21 April 2013 - 07:29 PM

Convince me you asked
I have spent almost 40 years as a production potter making my living with clay and never had a modern pug mill-I almost got one about 5-10 years back when I asked another production potter how his peter pugger did on reclaimed porcelain (porcelain is what I use) and he told me to forget it as it never threw as good (had legs) only worked with small pots after reclaiming and confirmed the time it took to process it.
I gave up the whole idea and never looked back

One last note I do own on old (from the 50's or 60's) vertical alpine pug mill that I reclaimed stoneware with back in the early 70's. That clay was crappy after the pugging and never threw well-That pugmill I got at a school auction on the cheap and am givig it away to be used as an extruder.
I know a few other production potters who have pugs and said do not bother.
Clay is cheap time is not.

I'm convinced but I'm not thinking about buying one you are. I will ask if you do buy one let us know how you like it
I do have a place nearby that uses my scraps so thats not an issue as they turn them into road building raw materials.
Mark
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#83 Marcia Selsor

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Posted 21 April 2013 - 08:44 PM

On the old Walker that was old in 1975, we had the knee bar but not a top guard. Fortunately never had an incident. BUt many times I did cut my fingers cleaning the blades. Not as nasty as greasing the cables on a brent slab roller though. Those cables fray and prick your hands.
To Mark, we had a very old vertical pug mill in the 60s at the Phila. College of Art that looked like it was from the Industrial Revolution in the 1800s.
One student did lose a bit of a finger on it.

Marcia

#84 Benzine

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Posted 21 April 2013 - 09:44 PM

I loved that Walker. That thing held, at least, fifty pounds of clay at a time, so I'd only turn it on, every few days. The knee bar/ About to be a Seriously Maimed Man's Switch, was functional, but I may have, continued the practice of my predecessor, and used a wood wedge, to bypass the lid close, safety feature. I was the only person, who ran the mill, so I didn't worry about student safety, and I'm fairly cautious about my own.

If I could find one, and had the space in my current classroom, I'd love to have an old Walker like that. As it is, I don't have the space, and instead use a couple dozen, manual style pug mills. I replace them fairly often, so they never break down, and they are extremely green, when it comes to energy use. They require zero electricity, as they run on the alternative fuel of Mountain Dew and Doritos. The downside is that they do tend to whine, when pugging, but I find, that if I apply a little sarcastic mocking, that usually goes away. Safety is generally not a concern either, as the manual pugger tends to be fairly harmless, though that can vary from model to model.
"Anything worth believing, is worth questioning"

#85 OffCenter

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Posted 22 April 2013 - 09:42 AM

I loved that Walker. That thing held, at least, fifty pounds of clay at a time, so I'd only turn it on, every few days. The knee bar/ About to be a Seriously Maimed Man's Switch, was functional, but I may have, continued the practice of my predecessor, and used a wood wedge, to bypass the lid close, safety feature. I was the only person, who ran the mill, so I didn't worry about student safety, and I'm fairly cautious about my own.

If I could find one, and had the space in my current classroom, I'd love to have an old Walker like that. As it is, I don't have the space, and instead use a couple dozen, manual style pug mills. I replace them fairly often, so they never break down, and they are extremely green, when it comes to energy use. They require zero electricity, as they run on the alternative fuel of Mountain Dew and Doritos. The downside is that they do tend to whine, when pugging, but I find, that if I apply a little sarcastic mocking, that usually goes away. Safety is generally not a concern either, as the manual pugger tends to be fairly harmless, though that can vary from model to model.


Just what I need! Can you ship me one or two? I'm good at sarcastic mocking and can get Mountain Dew and Doritos wholesale.

I'd gladly trade my de-airing Peter Pugger for and old beat-up Walker that still works.

Jim
E pur si muove.

"But it does move," said Galileo under his breath.

#86 Benzine

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Posted 22 April 2013 - 07:12 PM


I loved that Walker. That thing held, at least, fifty pounds of clay at a time, so I'd only turn it on, every few days. The knee bar/ About to be a Seriously Maimed Man's Switch, was functional, but I may have, continued the practice of my predecessor, and used a wood wedge, to bypass the lid close, safety feature. I was the only person, who ran the mill, so I didn't worry about student safety, and I'm fairly cautious about my own.

If I could find one, and had the space in my current classroom, I'd love to have an old Walker like that. As it is, I don't have the space, and instead use a couple dozen, manual style pug mills. I replace them fairly often, so they never break down, and they are extremely green, when it comes to energy use. They require zero electricity, as they run on the alternative fuel of Mountain Dew and Doritos. The downside is that they do tend to whine, when pugging, but I find, that if I apply a little sarcastic mocking, that usually goes away. Safety is generally not a concern either, as the manual pugger tends to be fairly harmless, though that can vary from model to model.


Just what I need! Can you ship me one or two? I'm good at sarcastic mocking and can get Mountain Dew and Doritos wholesale.

I'd gladly trade my de-airing Peter Pugger for and old beat-up Walker that still works.

Jim


There may be rules, in shipping that type of pug mill, especially across state lines....

The Walker I had at my previous job, did indeed work, but the rubber spider gear that connected the motor, and auger shaft, was beat. My predecessor mentioned it to me, and I tried to track down a replacement, but was unsuccessful. So, when I left, I told the same thing to the next guy. I still don't think it's been replaced.
"Anything worth believing, is worth questioning"

#87 Karen B

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Posted 23 April 2013 - 07:13 AM

After 30+ years of potting, I inherited a few thousand.
  • I bought a Bailey slab roller and a Shimpo pug mill.
  • I pug the clay and cut it when it is the length of the slab rollers width.
  • Place the long clay on the slab roller and pat down the side and roll.
  • So much faster than doing by hand.


Random info: Had to hire a big guy to lift the pugmill onto my table as it's so heavy, even in pieces.

#88 macdoodle

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Posted 23 April 2013 - 07:38 AM

Got a local school or community center even a day care center you can donate the recyclable clay to? Maybe head over there once in a while and help kids learn about making things with clay?

#89 GMosko

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Posted 23 April 2013 - 09:21 AM

For sheer money savings, the obvious answer is to not get a pug mill. BUT......some of us are getting older. The wear and tear on the back and wrists from wedging can eventually take its toll. So I bought a Peter Pugger (it is built like a tank!), and now I don't even wedge anymore! The clay is de-aired before it gets extruded. So I simply cut off a piece to the length (weight) I want, and then wedge it on the wheel. Just a few up and down movements of the clay will get the particles all lined up, and this is fantastically easier on my body than interminable wedging on a plaster table. I have found that the consistency of my clay can be adjusted to exactly what I want, too. I simply mix too hard clay with too soft clay. Life is good!
Gil Mosko

#90 Idaho Potter

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Posted 23 April 2013 - 07:44 PM

I can't believe TJR didn't comment on splash pans and Giffin Grips! He must be out of town or maybe it's a Canadian holiday? Benzine and Offcenter- you guys break me up! I've already posted my opinion of Peter Puggers (thumbs up) but want to get into the kerfuffle about names and such. I go by Idaho Potter, but if you look me up on the members pages, you'll see my name. No picture of me, but then a long list of camera manufacturers have remarked that I have damaged more than one photographer's career.

I personally look forward to Jim's (Off Center) posts, not that I agree with him all the time, but because I enjoy his caustic wit. I find that, he, TJR, Benzine, and occasionally John Baymore tickle my funnybone. Sometimes he does get a little personal, but I picture him in full armor ready for any battle. One day he can blister your hide, and the next will defend your position to the death. He energizes a lot of discussions and is soon joined by one or all of the other of the comedy team. As I read their comments to/for/against each other, I laugh out loud.

So I hope everyone will take a deep breath and allow those of differing opinions and styles to co-exist. It's just words.

Shirley



#91 Diane Puckett

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Posted 23 April 2013 - 08:32 PM

This is a great thread. The back of my car is now loaded with clay to go to a local school where students can have it for the cost of the energy they will expend in reclaiming it.. My hands are relieved to not have their carpal tunnels and arthritis further aggravated. I no longer feel guilty about a small mountain of unreclaimed clay. I have more room in my studio. Oh, and I saved a lot of money by not buying a pug mill.

I really don't care if other potters reclaim clay or not. It has pretty much no impact on anyone other than themselves. So, do whatever works for you. As for me, the cost of reclaiming outweighs the benefits.

Jim, please keep ranting. Life is to short to not do so.
Diane Puckett
Dry Ridge Pottery

#92 OffCenter

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Posted 24 April 2013 - 08:47 AM

...not that I agree with him all the time,...


What the hell's that supposed to mean! Just kidding. Thanks for the kind words, Shirley.

Jim
E pur si muove.

"But it does move," said Galileo under his breath.

#93 Idaho Potter

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Posted 25 April 2013 - 12:25 AM

Jim,

It is what it is. (I have never been able to figure out that expression--what is IT?)

Shirley

#94 Benzine

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Posted 27 April 2013 - 08:55 PM


I loved that Walker. That thing held, at least, fifty pounds of clay at a time, so I'd only turn it on, every few days. The knee bar/ About to be a Seriously Maimed Man's Switch, was functional, but I may have, continued the practice of my predecessor, and used a wood wedge, to bypass the lid close, safety feature. I was the only person, who ran the mill, so I didn't worry about student safety, and I'm fairly cautious about my own.

If I could find one, and had the space in my current classroom, I'd love to have an old Walker like that. As it is, I don't have the space, and instead use a couple dozen, manual style pug mills. I replace them fairly often, so they never break down, and they are extremely green, when it comes to energy use. They require zero electricity, as they run on the alternative fuel of Mountain Dew and Doritos. The downside is that they do tend to whine, when pugging, but I find, that if I apply a little sarcastic mocking, that usually goes away. Safety is generally not a concern either, as the manual pugger tends to be fairly harmless, though that can vary from model to model.


Just what I need! Can you ship me one or two? I'm good at sarcastic mocking and can get Mountain Dew and Doritos wholesale.

I'd gladly trade my de-airing Peter Pugger for and old beat-up Walker that still works.

Jim



Jim, I noticed there is a Walker on Public Surplus, that is listed somewhere in Florida. It was around one hundred bucks, last I looked.
"Anything worth believing, is worth questioning"

#95 Biglou13

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Posted 28 April 2013 - 12:53 AM



I loved that Walker. That thing held, at least, fifty pounds of clay at a time, so I'd only turn it on, every few days. The knee bar/ About to be a Seriously Maimed Man's Switch, was functional, but I may have, continued the practice of my predecessor, and used a wood wedge, to bypass the lid close, safety feature. I was the only person, who ran the mill, so I didn't worry about student safety, and I'm fairly cautious about my own.

If I could find one, and had the space in my current classroom, I'd love to have an old Walker like that. As it is, I don't have the space, and instead use a couple dozen, manual style pug mills. I replace them fairly often, so they never break down, and they are extremely green, when it comes to energy use. They require zero electricity, as they run on the alternative fuel of Mountain Dew and Doritos. The downside is that they do tend to whine, when pugging, but I find, that if I apply a little sarcastic mocking, that usually goes away. Safety is generally not a concern either, as the manual pugger tends to be fairly harmless, though that can vary from model to model.


Just what I need! Can you ship me one or two? I'm good at sarcastic mocking and can get Mountain Dew and Doritos wholesale.

I'd gladly trade my de-airing Peter Pugger for and old beat-up Walker that still works.

Jim



Jim, I noticed there is a Walker on Public Surplus, that is listed somewhere in Florida. It was around one hundred bucks, last I looked.


Caution big brother is watching.
The beige is blinding!!!!!!
The middle of the road is boring

The true sign of intelligence is not knowledge but imagination.
-Albert Einstein

#96 Biglou13

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Posted 28 April 2013 - 12:53 AM

Im in Florida where when ... Re walker....
Caution big brother is watching.
The beige is blinding!!!!!!
The middle of the road is boring

The true sign of intelligence is not knowledge but imagination.
-Albert Einstein

#97 OffCenter

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Posted 28 April 2013 - 09:11 AM

Imminent Florida where when ... Re walker....


Back off, Biglou. I've got dibs.

Jim
E pur si muove.

"But it does move," said Galileo under his breath.

#98 OffCenter

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Posted 28 April 2013 - 09:18 AM




I loved that Walker. That thing held, at least, fifty pounds of clay at a time, so I'd only turn it on, every few days. The knee bar/ About to be a Seriously Maimed Man's Switch, was functional, but I may have, continued the practice of my predecessor, and used a wood wedge, to bypass the lid close, safety feature. I was the only person, who ran the mill, so I didn't worry about student safety, and I'm fairly cautious about my own.

If I could find one, and had the space in my current classroom, I'd love to have an old Walker like that. As it is, I don't have the space, and instead use a couple dozen, manual style pug mills. I replace them fairly often, so they never break down, and they are extremely green, when it comes to energy use. They require zero electricity, as they run on the alternative fuel of Mountain Dew and Doritos. The downside is that they do tend to whine, when pugging, but I find, that if I apply a little sarcastic mocking, that usually goes away. Safety is generally not a concern either, as the manual pugger tends to be fairly harmless, though that can vary from model to model.


Just what I need! Can you ship me one or two? I'm good at sarcastic mocking and can get Mountain Dew and Doritos wholesale.

I'd gladly trade my de-airing Peter Pugger for and old beat-up Walker that still works.

Jim



Jim, I noticed there is a Walker on Public Surplus, that is listed somewhere in Florida. It was around one hundred bucks, last I looked.


No longer on the list but there is a nice bluebird pugmill at a little over $100 in Nevada. It looks like it is in very good condition but even if it isn't it is a great deal for 1 or 2 hundred. All yours, Biglou.

Jim
E pur si muove.

"But it does move," said Galileo under his breath.

#99 potter232

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Posted 28 April 2013 - 04:52 PM

All of the above makes perfectly good sense.

I LOVE MY PETER PUGGER!


I do a lot of hand building, and the scraps go straight back into the pugger,it is sealed and they don't dry out in there, When the hopper is full, push mix, wait a moment, push de air, wait 30 sec. push pug, out comes PERFECT clay, exactly the consistency I want for the job I'm doing.
For throwing, often the bagged clay is too stiff for me, I buy in quanity and some of it has been around a while. I cut it into 6 pieces, throw it in, add water and in 5 minutes have perfect clay for throwing. It has saved me MUCH muscle work just that way.

For using the large 5" wall extruder, I can do the same and struggle less to push stiff clay through that.

It also acts as a motorized horizontal extruder, super thing when I'm weaving baskets and need lots of strips. I also run test tiles out that way.

Very little of what I use it for is actual reclaim, the clay never dries out, it goes right back through the pugger and then is wraped in plastic and store in a plastic tote on the floor to be used.

Other thing, I am much more likely to scrap a not so great pot now, it's no work to recycle. I need to use all my clay, my brain is not happy with 'throw it away'.

Also,. I never realized how much better to throw the pugged clay is, no matter how much I wedge, the clay was never as nice as it is out of the pugger. t has really improved my throwing.

Nuff said, love the thing. I have MUCH less muscle trouble, no more carple tunnel issues, and make many more pots that I did before I got it.



#100 potter232

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Posted 28 April 2013 - 05:27 PM

Hi Clay lover! I agree with you! I bought a cheap second-hand pug mill because I find pugged clay much easier to throw, and honestly can't deal with kneading by hand. I do find the pugging hard work at times, but not as hard or time consuming as reclaiming by hand. As I don't drive it costs me as much in delivery costs as to buy clay, so reclaiming is a necessity. In the UK clay is expensive and carriage costs horrendous! I am not a professional potter - just someone who loves clay and potting. As I don't sell my pots for profit, but for church funds, I need to keep my costs down. Also I am a bit ancient with all the usual aches and pains and at times don't deal with scraps when I should so they can be at various stages of dryness. I try to guess how much water (or slip) to add to the clay as I put it into the hopper and usually it comes out alright. If it is not quite right I put it through the mill again, adjusting the water content. I am aware this is a bit haphazard, but if it gives me a few more years' potting I am happy to do it. This method wouldn't be for people making a living from their pottery, but there are many amateur potters who shouldn't be afraid of making life a bit easier for themselves, especially the older ones of us, who keep thinking they will have to give up the pottery "soon" - but can't bear the thought of actually doing it. I didn't start potting until I was 60 years old, and smashed my shoulder shortly after that, but 12 years later (after two ops on the shoulder) still manage to enjoy making pots - so find a way, whether it means buying a pug mill or whatever else is needed.

You young ones enjoy your workouts kneading your clay and do your best to keep fit - long may you continue without needing a pug mill!




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