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Using Sausage Caulk Guns, 18x1 thrust ratios, as Clay Extruders?


T.Cotta
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Hello fellow potters!

I am now in the market for buying a clay extruder gun. I have looked into the clay extruders sold at ceramic supply stores online, but found with shipping added it was cheaper to get a premium sausage caulking gun from Amazon with my Prime membership. This interest in replacing the clay extruder with a full barrel , aluminum, caulking gun is what brings me here!

I have been eyeing  two guns in particular, but I wanted to hear from other potters on if a sausage caulking  gun is a viable tool for ceramics. I was looking into the20oz 18x1 thrust ratio of the Albion engineering B18S20 B-line manual drive sausage caulking gun. I figured that with the added benefit of a higher thrust ratio it would make for a less strenuous time when pushing out coils from the gun, especially if I plan on using it frequently. The other gun is similar, but of a different brand. I have included the link below to both guns I am considering.

I want to add, that I do not have a home studio and therefor need the convenience of a mobile handheld extruder. I have used many extruders in the past, but due to recent projects am in the need of getting my own personal extruder. I have a range of clay from very soft porcelain, to mid-fire stoneware.

What are your experiences using a sausage caulking gun for an extruder, is it superior? Which of the two listed would you pick? Do you have another product suggestion?  Do you feel the 26x1 ratio would be more worth it in the long run?

 

 

Albion Engineering B18S20 B-Line Manual Drive Sausage Caulking Gun, 20 oz, 18:1 Drive: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00EKJVYLQ/ref=ask_ql_qh_dp_hza?th=1

Caulk Gun, Bulk/Sausage Packs, Blk, 24 oz.: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B013WAXI9Y/ref=ask_ql_qh_dp_hza

Thanks!!

Edited by T.Cotta
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1 hour ago, neilestrick said:

Get the highest ratio you can. Clay is difficult to extrude. A hand-held extruder is only good for small stuff, like coils or mug handles. If you're looking at making hollow forms and such, you'll need a proper wall mounted unit.

I'm only hoping to use it for coils, as my projects mostly consist of them. Usual clay extruders are in thrust ratio of 6x1-12x1 I believe right? I didn't know if 26x1 was overkill for the clay or if that is standard and I hadn't realized. Have you used caulk guns for clay before do they work well or should I stick with ones marketed for clay?

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  • T.Cotta changed the title to Using Sausage Caulk Guns, 18x1 thrust ratios, as Clay Extruders?
1 hour ago, neilestrick said:

The clay ones are just modified caulk guns. They're not building them from scratch. I've got a 14:1 caulk gun that I run caulk with, and I can't imagine trying to use that for clay. Caulk and sausage are nowhere near as dense as clay.

I built one out of pvc and a manual caulking gun and the clay bent the shaft and plunger to the point where I couldn't remove it.  It was that day I bought a custom made wall extruder on ebay.  Was 250 bucks and it's a beast.  There's a Canadian guy named TA Ironworks on ebay and he welds them himself.  Love it!

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31 minutes ago, liambesaw said:

I built one out of pvc and a manual caulking gun and the clay bent the shaft and plunger to the point where I couldn't remove it.  It was that day I bought a custom made wall extruder on ebay.  Was 250 bucks and it's a beast.  There's a Canadian guy named TA Ironworks on ebay and he welds them himself.  Love it!

Thats why I was looking into the higher thrust ratios for better support. I believe I'll just do the 26x1. I don't have the funds at the moment to get a battery powered one as nice as it would be. I called Bailey's inquiring of their Kemper gun's ratio and they had no idea what I was talking about. Kemper, whom they directed me to, hadn't a clue either. I wanted to know as a baseline what it was I was used to using in other shops. 

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@neilestrick, Sorry to say, but for coils, handles, and feet among other things my Ryobi electric caulk gun has been running for 2 years now, and is still going strong. The amount of torque the motor puts out compared to my hand is more than sufficient for these dies. I recommend it to anyone looking for a small hand held extruder.

 

March 2019 issue of Ceramics Monthly,  contains an article written by Madeleine Coomey and I. You can also find it on my blog site.

 

best,

Pres

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10 hours ago, Pres said:

@neilestrick, Sorry to say, but for coils, handles, and feet among other things my Ryobi electric caulk gun has been running for 2 years now, and is still going strong. The amount of torque the motor puts out compared to my hand is more than sufficient for these dies. I recommend it to anyone looking for a small hand held extruder.

March 2019 issue of Ceramics Monthly,  contains an article written by Madeleine Coomey and I. You can also find it on my blog site.

https://ceramicartsnetwork.org/ceramics-monthly/clay-tools/making-clay-tools/tips-and-tools-extruder-conversion/

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10 hours ago, Pres said:

@neilestrick, Sorry to say, but for coils, handles, and feet among other things my Ryobi electric caulk gun has been running for 2 years now, and is still going strong. The amount of torque the motor puts out compared to my hand is more than sufficient for these dies. I recommend it to anyone looking for a small hand held extruder.

 

March 2019 issue of Ceramics Monthly,  contains an article written by Madeleine Coomey and I. You can also find it on my blog site.

 

best,

Pres

The DIY Ryobi is something I've looked into, but I dont have access to the saws and required equipment to adjust the various pieces. You should look into making these modifications and selling them on eBay or Amazon. I'm sure you'd make a pretty penny. 

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I also have a standard caulk gun with pvc and carved out my own shapes from insert end caps (thin and easy to cut). The PVC is about 8 3/4 inches long. There was no need to size down the plunger and the whole set up cost about $10. Love it for small batches of handles.

 

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Edited by Stumonster Clayworks
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