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Bailey slab roller

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In order to roll a 24 x 24 slab, I guess at how much to cut off a block of commercial clay.  Maybe 2 inches.  The slab roller doesn't add much to the width of the rolled out clay, so the first pass is only to establish the width, so the slab roller is adjusted for maybe 1 1/4".  The second pass rolls the clay the other way and is set for the final thickness.  The change in adjustment from 1 1/4 to 1/4 is kind of a pain.  Lots of quarter turns.

Has anyone made a modification to the hand crank to change adjustment?  I'd rather have that as an electric drive than the slab roller itself.  That seems overly complicated though, maybe a larger wheel on the other end?

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On my electric 30 inch Bailey-if I wanted a 24 inch slab. I would cut a 25# pug diagonally the long way.(this may take for than 1/2 the pug-you will learn soon how much to cut) Then on the wedging table I slowly toss that clay so it stretches out. and an angle . It still has the angle cut and soon its about 24 inches long-the angle now fits into the rollers easy which are set to my final (only height)  and the width is already 24 inchs  so with one pass its 24 wide and over 24 long . 

I rarely run slabs thru twice these days. The Bailey has two drive wheels so the are equally compressed .

I'm not sure way you are doing it that way seems way to many steps to me?Unless the manual roller is a bear to work???

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my 24 inch wide bailey is the kind with an 8 foot long table.   to make a full size slab, i cut about a 2-3 inch piece off the boxed clay.  my clay comes in a rectangle so the finished cut is about 8x16 x2or so.   then the good part, i slap the piece down on the concrete floor onto a printer's blanket so it stretches and flattens.  doing this about 3 times, i can see that the width will be the entire width of the slab roller and the thickness is about right to feed through the roller.  it's a bailey so it will work.    my rollers is set at just under a quarter inch and i rarely ever change that setting.

the clay was compressed each time i slapped it down and the roller compresses it to less than a quarter inch in thickness.   i know that many people think anything thinner than 1/4 inch is weak.  well, my clay is very strong, solidly sturdy and able to be made into almost anything i want.   i have seen people who make excessively thick slabs, half an inch and then try to bend the clay into a shape.   i cannot understand that at all.  thickness is not strength, it is just extra weight.


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One full turn of either dial is only about 1/16".  I'd rather do it this way (I think), one pass in canvas to get the width and a second pass with the slab mats to finish it off.   Makes for a nice square slab.  I'm surprised Bailey doesn't put a handle like this on themselves since the connection is already there.

slab roller.jpg

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