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Shimpo Vl Whisper Vs Rk Whisper Vs Skutt Prodigy

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Im on the market for a good wheel. i have used the Shimpo vl whisper and love it. i was wondering because ill probably start doing larger pots so i dont want torque to mess things up. 

im looking at a shimpo vl whiper and rk whiper ( http://www.bennettpottery.com/pdfs/2013/P33-35.pdf )

and a skutt prodigy ( http://www.theceramicshop.com/store/product/2807/Skutt-Prodigy-Pottery-Wheel/?gclid=CjwKEAjwsvmvBRCT5ozK-dmY7D4SJACyIoJmOZsGHBUNKvAMehqsykzyBtfyBKliX2gd3ndAwkik0xoCi0rw_wcB )

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The Skutt has more torque the the Shimpo wheels by far.

 

One of the greatest benefits of the Skutt/TS wheels is the huge splash pan. The Prodigy is the only model that has a small pan, and it has a 12" wheel head instead of the normal 14" head. Save up for a Classic. It'll be worth it.

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I just ordered a TS/Skutt wheel. It should show up at the supplier in a couple of weeks. I opted for the 1/2 horsepower fixed pan model, adjustable legs, and SSX drive. I have a Skutt kiln and when I've called up there (Oregon) for advice/ technical questions, they are great.

 

I sold my old Shimpo (1972?) to a friend who was desperate for an inexpensive working wheel, and my Brent CXC because of the color...just kidding. I didn't like the pedal, chirping (belt/motor), pan, and speed change delay.

 

I told my friend she was not allowed to sell the old Shimpo to anyone but me. I love that wheel.

 

I've used the VL Whisper quite a bit at the local JC. There are at least 6 of them there. They get hammered on daily. The oldest one is about 5 years old. They are GREAT workhorse quality wheels. I don't like the splash pan, and the quietness is unnerving really. The pedal is nice and speed is easy to control.

 

If you need more torque, you adjust your speed.

 

Most students grab a Whisper first over the Brents and Soldners at the JC. Which is odd really, because the Soldners kick ass. They are just beat to hell after 30 years of service and lack of maintenance. I usually use a Soldner wheel at the JC when I'm there.

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The one thing about the Tomas/skutt wheels is the splash pan sticks above the head plane. I see you can order the riser shaft to fix this. I like to throw large 18 inch platters on large bats so the only way is having this be above the splash pan. I take off my brent pan.
I think the T/s wheels as well as the Brents will make it thru the test of time.One of my Brents is from 1971 and still works every day.
The wispers are noise free but not very strong on torque-the pans are cheap plastic-I see issues down the road-same thing with Pacficia wheels.
Mark

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Late to the party, but I have a fair amount of experience with Brent and Shimpo.  The RK Whisper is very quiet (hence the name), which is nice.  Also the best if you move your wheel around to do demos and such; much less likely to get hurt than a conventional 3-legged wheel.  I'd probably choose a midrange Brent if I had the only vote, but the wife likes the RK, so that's what I have at the house.  I seldom throw more than half a bag per pot, and I've never ever had an issue with torque, even on my forays into full-bag pots.  The splash pan is easily removable for cleaning, and I know of RKs that have been use daily for classes for over a decade with no ill effects.  Downside is the smallish wheel head and moderate sized splash pan, but it is (slightly) below the wheel head, so when I put on a 16" bat the only issue is a mess on the floor.  Based on my statistically unsatisfactory sample size, it seems that the pedal action on the Shimpo is a bit less prone to issues than the Brent, but both seem to be workhorses.

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Jamie, is that old Shimpo you (kind of) sold made of cast iron or something, super heavy, like a car engine block?  I have one of those, and I think it was the first model they ever made.  Still kicking on! 

 

One day I will have to get a new one, Whisper VL was the first choice but interesting comments on Soldner and Skutt...

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