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akin4843

Weight/size Charts?

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Does anyone know of any good weight/size/measurement charts for different types of pots? My ceramics teacher used to have a chart that listed the type of pot (mug/cereal bowl/pitcher, etc), how much clay to use (in lbs.), and how tall & wide each piece should be. I kick myself when I think how I should have copied that stuff down b/c I can't find anything anywhere similar. There are a few sites that have them put the weight is in oz. & ml. I would like something that lists how many lbs. b/c that's how my scale is. I am just starting out on my own, having already graduated and I would find this pretty handy to have. Thanks in advance...

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I believe this link will help you:

 

http://www.lakesidepottery.com/HTML%20Text/Tips/amount-of-clay-per-pottery-ware.htm

 

You should be able to select the text, copy and paste it to a text file, or maybe that PDF I attached will be downloadable.

 

I think, but not certain, that there is something similar in a Robin Hopper book, Functional Pottery. It might even be the same chart.

 

John

Weights of Clay Needed for Thrown Pottery Ware Size Measurements.pdf

Weights of Clay Needed for Thrown Pottery Ware Size Measurements.pdf

Linda Lees and mss like this

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IMO, there are too many factors to say definitively how much clay should be used for each form. It all depends on what size you want the pot to be, how thin you throw, and the shrinkage rate of your clay. Many years ago I spent a great deal of time working out a chart like that, and today it's not very accurate. I now use a different clay body, and I throw thinner than I used to. Take the time to make your own chart. It'll be well worth the effort, at least for a few years. But it's easy enough to modify the chart as your throwing style changes.

 

The chart JLowes posted isn't even close to what I use on most of those forms. 4 1/2 pounds for a teapot? That's one massive teapot. 5 3/4 pound pitcher? To big to pass around the table when it's full. 1 1/2 pound mug is closer to 20 ounces. Those are some thick pots they're making.

Marcia Selsor and douglas like this

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I yield to the superior throwing skills of Neil. 

 

When I was beginning this fun trek I would have been amazed to use the low amounts in the chart.  Now my bride will make me hammer things that weigh more than she thinks I am capable of, but maybe she hasn't seen this chart.

 

John

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I have a chart from CAD that was made by Robin Hopper.  I've used it for about three years for students, and have told them to add 1/2  lb. to 3/4 lb to what the chart has listed, because they can't yet throw as well as Robin.  Making your own chart sounds like the best idea, because so much depends on the type of clay and your expertise. 

 

Start with a pound of clay and see how large a cylinder or bowl you can pull.  Move up to two pounds and take note of the results.  Start throwing lidded containers and making note of TOTAL amounts for body and lid.  Same for teapots, include all parts.  Remember, if you are making a cereal bowl, you can make it thinner than if you are making a large mixing bowl which needs to be thicker to withstand the beatings it will have to handle.

 

Shirley

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I agree with Neil. Those weights are massive.

Mug..3/4 to 1lb

Cereal bowl..2and1/2 lbs

M edium bowl..3.25

Large bowl,, 5lbs

Plates.........5lbs

Teapots, 2 and one quarter lbs

Jars...2and1/2 lbs, and moving to larger increments.

TJR.

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In the past, I used a pound and a half for my larger mugs.  But as I've gotten better, and thrown thinner, I have found that to be too much, and I usually end up trimming quite a bit off the top.  So the mugs end up being closer to a pound.

 

With that said, I like the chart, and it might be something helpful to hang in my classroom, to give the students, a general idea.

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I have seen several size charts over the years, and most give an approximation. Remembering that the size of an item is base on the density and the wetness of the clay, and the skills of the potter. I used to think that throwing eggshell thin pieces was a sign of a good potter, and then I tried drinking out of those eggshell thin mugs of ^6 stoneware finding that they would get too hot, would get cold too quick, and the rims had to have special care to make them comfy. Even the weight of the mug with coffee in it seemed off. So I forced myself to not throw so thin, and found I liked the functional pieces better that way. Start with a size chart, and figure where things go from there for yourself.

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Thanks for the replies everyone. The reason I want the chart is purely for reference, not as an end-all/be-all. Sometimes when I'm throwing (let's say a mug with 1.5 lbs of clay), I often wonder if that's an appropriate amount b/c I find everything I throw to be too small once it comes out the kiln. The charts you guys have linked are essentially the same chart I found through google and it really confuses me b/c of the oz. My scale doesn't have oz. and I wonder why you would need to get something down to the oz. anyway. If it's 14 oz. then why not just say 1 lb. (close enough for me, anyway). I will look up that book Dianne mentioned and see what that's about. I just like having a reference around is all since I'm a total beginner and don't have the skill to even throw 4 lbs of clay (yikes).

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The best way to do this list is weigh then throw and look what turns out.

I have a form list on the wall at wedging table with wieghts-my one developed over time

My mugs for example are 3/4# and 1 #(the standard) 1 1/4 # and 1 1/2 # and huge ones at 2#

 

Your may be a different weight as your throwing skills and style may vary.Get a better scale(more accurate)

The list you want is only for you. Keep throwing till its 2nd nature then work on such a list.

Mark

pattial and D.M.Ernst like this

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So I have been throwing a lot of mugs lately. I like a decent thickness on my walls, if I go to thin, the wife's coffee and tea gets cold to fast. But I also don't like heavy either. I think the 1# is about right for a nice 10oz mug. I made some bigger mugs with 1.5# and they were probably 16-20oz. I can't even imagine a 2# mug. Must be more like a beer stein or something. I guess it also depends on how much your clay shrinks. 

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As I often throw off the hump, I have come to think of size balls instead of weights. Golf ball gets me a decent: small cup, salt bowl, lid for teapot or other container, chalice bowl. A tennis ball yields a good sized coffee mug, a salad bowl, a larger lid, closed box form for lid separation later, or even a short chalice stem. Hard ball sized ball will be a larger mug, a small teapot, a larger chalice stem, a larger salad or soup bowl or ramekin, larger closed box form, or quite large mug. Softball size will do well for teapots, batter bowls, serving bowls, some larger lids, and small pitcher forms. Then we get to sized we don't have balls to relate too, but then you might get the picture. It is not rocket science, but it works. You will notice that I do not have anything in the way of plates here, I still have not mastered throwing them, even small ones off the hump.

Marcia Selsor, Chilly and Joseph F like this

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Plates are hard.  Some of the best I've seen are jiggered.  The form is so simple that variations inherent in throwing don't add a lot to the basic plate shape, in my opinion.  Plates should probably be the favorite form of surface-oriented potters.

 

I do weigh clay, but I've found that for small weights, after all these years, I can grab a handful, plop it on the scale, and be within a few tenths of an ounce most times.

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Akin, I know where you're coming from!! As a newbie it's hard to visualize a finished product from a lump (especially weight-wise), and factoring in shrinkage adds another level of complexity. I made a cup I thought would be perfect and after firing it's tiny. As much as we beginners hate to hear it....it takes practice.

 

My scale is an old-fashioned kitchen scale with pounds ticked off and ounces marked in lines between. It's not precise but it doesn't have to be, really. Close truly is good enough. I think the lists that have such exacting amounts are for those potters who have a.) mastered the form and consistency in that form; and b.) production potters who don't have time to reclaim a lot of clay and so don't want a lot of excess getting cut off the top or trimmed off the bottom. Me, I end up doing a lot of trimming and reclaiming. :-)

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Plates are hard.  Some of the best I've seen are jiggered.  The form is so simple that variations inherent in throwing don't add a lot to the basic plate shape, in my opinion.  Plates should probably be the favorite form of surface-oriented potters.

 

I do weigh clay, but I've found that for small weights, after all these years, I can grab a handful, plop it on the scale, and be within a few tenths of an ounce most times.

Yes, being able to judge weight/size is a learned skill. It can really come in handy at other times when picking something up and having to judge how heavy it is. -_-

rayaldridge likes this

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I work exclusively in porcelain, and that often means that a fair amount of trimming is inevitable.  (Especially if you're a control freak like me.)  I let my trimmings dry out and use them for slip, and avoid some of the reclaim process.

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I used to make my mugs 3/4 of a lb. Many people asked for bigger mugs, so I went to a 1 lb size and dropped the smaller size.

I think the sizes were developed for fluids, as in pint measure. As I apprenticed in England, that's where I got my measurements. When I came back to Canada, everyone wanted bigger.

Go figure.

TJR.

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The place where I am regular for breakfast has started using a larger mug for some of. . . it handles a 1/3 of a pot! I usually drink 1 1/2 mugs there. Yeah, I love my coffee. . . black if you please!

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On my salad plates I've used 2 lbs , where I center and open to 9 in then pull a wall for the rim, lay it over so the rim is at the edge of a 10 in bat pin hole but this seems to be too light to me, sorta what "Pres" said about mugs. I'm thinking It should be 2 1/4- 2 1/2 lbs to give more substance. I went up to 3 1/2 on my plates and that seems about right

Do others here like a thin or more robust plates.

Wyndham

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My patens are over sized from what is commercially available. My customers seem to like it that way though These plates have a rim that would be considered oversize, and the feet are the same. For presentation purposes and to handle bread loaves or even piles of torn bread I open out about 6" at the base 1/2" thick, then pull out a rim that is about 3" wide rim with a thicker outer edge roll sloping upward to allow easy pick up when standing. Over the years they have varied, but 4-5# is what I use now to throw them. Thinner ones did not seem to hold up well for some reason or other, and I did not like the thicker ones myself. For serving plates these work really well as I use rejects at home. :rolleyes: However, as dinner plates they are larger, and a little heavy.

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This is an interesting thread.  I have kept track of the weight of the clay that I use and saw a clear decrease over time.  I have noticed that my goals of throwing thin pieces with "ideal" forms often conflicts with what people want (thicker pieces that insulate and feel solid, and some bowls with flat internal bottoms).  I have become less interested in impressing my potter friends and have no problem throwing a piece that the user wants.  But, it took me a few years to be comfortable enough in my ability to throw what I want, that I am willing to make thicker or flatter bowls when the need arises.  It just takes a couple heartbroken friends when their "beautiful bowl" is chipped to convince me to make sturdier ware.

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