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jolieo

Any Input Would Be Helpful

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Hi,

I do need some help. Last year I went through an illness that made me reconsider a great deal of things. I am a waitress, and most people would not have chosen this as a life profession, it has suited me for 25 years, money and schedule being good. After this illness my my recuperation time has been long and I also realized it was time to get the things I have been postponing into my life.

I want to throw clay on a wheel. I was going to take classes, but the instructor wants $190 for 4 lessons, and $100 a month to use his studio, bring my own clay and glazes. I already have a kiln, and a shop, I have decided to invest in my own wheel.

I am broke from not working for a year , plus I am resistant to buying a very expensive wheel w/o having thrown nor knowing anything about wheels.

Here's where I need input: there is a Brent model b used on ebay, probably will bid up to $350, it looks rusty but my husband thinks that it is fine. I could just about swing a clay boss, but I found a few reviews that weren't glowing. My husband is a wood worker so I could get the foot wheel kit by Brent . I could swing the ie by Brent.Finally there is a Bailey pro-x on ebay that will probably bid up to $400.

I am a person who almost always goes small, plus my kiln cannot hold large pieces.

Any input is very appreciated. Thanks Jolie

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Hi Jolie...

 

First- are you more comfortable throwing with a kick wheel or an adjustable electronic wheel? This is a big point of personal preference, and you'll find strong advocates both ways. Your decision on the kick-wheel vs. electronic dichotomy should not be dictated by cost. You'll be using that wheel for a long time.

 

I'm personally suspicious of used wheels- especially when you don't know the use history. If- as you say- you're planning to routinely throw small, I'd think that the ie should work well for you.

 

Just my two cents... I'm sure you'll field some suggestions that are dramatically different!

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Hi Jolieo and welcome to the forum.

 

My first thought is that you should not buy the wheel before you get a chance to see if you even like throwing. You might end up liking hand building or coiling or sculpture and never use a wheel.

Have you checked into any nearby Arts Centers or Parks programs to see if they offer beginner pottery classes? Or Google for other nearby potters who might trade studio help for instruction?

clay lover likes this

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Thank you for the fast input. I did check out classes , and the cost is what drove me to look into buying a wheel.

I have worked in clay before, I have an affinity for the stuff, I love clay! I want to throw because it trully opens up many artistic avenues. I love in saint augstine florida, and I would like to segue into selling curios to the tourists. We are an artsy town , without any made in town art souvenirs ( go figure). If it doesn't work out like I planned, I am good with that. I am fine w either motorized or kick wheel as long as the ability to have a stable mechanically sound machine is the same.

I have read so many articles saying to start w a used wheel, and if must say that I prefer to recycle and buy used when possible, but it have had poor luck with things like refrigerators, middle luck w cars. My husband rarely buys used electric tools, but he buys used hand tools.

I was thinking the ie was the way to go, or maybe the used brent b. I am just am wobbling and indecisive cuz I have no input from those that do here in st Augustine. Thanks

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I am a brent fan-have 4 of them-bought 3 used

I would stay away from the clay boss

Bailey make a solid product as well.

After looking at those brent wheels on e-bay the newer one in Georgia with the slash pan looks in better shape

The rusty one  in Florida is pretty old as the motor design shows

You should make sure they spin and are not noisy while running

Enjoy your wheel.

Mark

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I have two Clay Boss wheels, one bought new and one bought used.  I love them.  I have used Shimpo and Brent, and I'll readily admit that there are benefits to spending more, but if you don't have it.... 

 

My 'used' wheel is better than the newer, store-bought one - go figure.  The used one was an e-bay purchase, but I'm not sure I'd buy one again without being able to try it out first.  I was just very lucky!  I definately recommend plugging it in and seeing if it runs smoothly, if you buy used.

 

Alice

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Like Mark, I am a fan of Brent.

My CXC just stopped running after 35 plus years. I think I need to change the belt.

I also have a secondary Brent B which I am now using. Works great and is quieter than the CXC.

I know the kick-wheels. Someone in my old studio is trying to sell one for $150.00. They are pretty heavy and take up a lot of space. I paid $700.00 for my used Brent b. No regrets.

I would go with a used electric.

TJR.

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I'm a Bailey fan. I have had my Bailey wheel for about 15 years and no problems yet.

I really recommend you try sitting at one first to see if it is comfortable for your body.

Even a better consideration, as Chris says, see if you even like throwing first.

 

Marcia

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Thank you very much for your input! I gather that the brent or the bailey are ok bets. I realize the learning curve is steep, but when I went to take classes they were steep too. I have taught myself weaving, water colors, pastels, embossing, on and on. I lived in a rural area with no classes on anything for years. I take that back: an artist gave me lessons on perpesctive and drawing, it was fun!

I will see if I go through with bidding on wheel: the Brent that is beat up is my best bet right now, but I am a little afraid of how beat up it is. The bailey is in better shape but is already at 430 and probably will go much higher w the 1/2 hp motor. Idk , might just keep looking and hope for a better deal or save my money and go for the real thing. Thank you for your input, Jolie

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When I used to throw in a large studio with a mix of wheels (Brent, Pacifica, Clay Boss Baily, and kick) I would always get there early to try to use one of the Brent wheels.  It made a big difference.  I start and stop my wheel a lot so I don't like using a kick wheel.  My second choice was the Pacifica and if I got stuck on any of the other wheels during class I would just spend my time glazing.  To me, it was a huge difference and I had no association with name brand at the time this was just from the experience of using the wheels.  When it came time to get my own wheel I got a Pacifica (due to cost) and I like it almost as much as the Brent wheels except for the foot petal control. If I ever get the opportunity to get a Brent cheaply I will jump on it.  Still, I don't think I would buy a rusty one off ebay.  Probably wait patiently for one to come up on craigslist.

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Have you included the shipping costs in your budget?  If you buy from out-of-state, shipping can be costly.  If it is somewhere you can drive to and haul it home yourself, you'd be better off.  If it has to come by truck (most will), they usually only deliver to the curb--they don't do steps or doorways.

 

Shirley

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