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QotW: Do you have a favorite tool that you use with a lot of different materials?


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Hi folks, no new questions in the pool today so I will take a swing at it.

I have been thinking about tools in the shop that get used often or that if they weren't there I would be inconvenienced. One such tool is the bar stick, or hand held blender. I use it when mixing up slips from dried clay and slip, I use it to remix small amounts of glaze when using the airbrush as it fits the container and quickly does the job. I have even used it in a container of dry clay broken into inch size chunks to get to sandy chunks before adding water.  I mix underglazes and stains with it, along with glazes in small amounts, 

QotW: Do you have a favorite tool that you use with a lot of different materials?

best,

Pres

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I don't know is water counts as a tool but it is the only thing I can think of that I use for different material.   I soften a bag of clay in a 5 gal bucket of water.  revive dry clay with water,  mix glaze, slip, oxides and plaster with water,  throw on the wheel with water,  wash my hands with water.   I could list some more,  I don't know what I would do if I didn't have it.     Denice

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Sponges (and Denise's water), several sizes - big, half a big, cut to size and shape pieces for particular jobs (per Bill van Gilder's suggestion - somewhere...), for clean ups, controlled application of water whilst working with clay, also removing water from a work in progress, wiping back glaze and underglaze.

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Chopsticks. Round, square, fancy, plain, bare wood, enameled-I use them for so many things in the studio!! Stirring, making different sizes & shapes of holes, lettering, texture designs, getting dried glaze out of the inside of the jar caps, use as tweezers to grab stuff that doesn't need the precision of tweeezers...and when I need some more (I go through a lot) I get to go to Golden Dragon for their terrific Mushroom Chow Yuk and steamed dumplings with spicy mustard. 

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I would say an electric drill. I use it on clay for drilling holes and mixing...for drilling holes in plastic, wood and various metals, for rotating coarse wire wheels to create texture in clay and wood...for driving screws, too!

Edited by JohnnyK
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This was a tough one. I have lots of tools I am very fond of. The needle tool get the most use, hands down, for all sorts of things. It’s not my favorite. The clay mallet is my favorite, but it’s got only a couple jobs. So I have to say it’s the 12” Shimpo banding wheel. It’s a Cadillac. Decorating, carving, hand-built pieces, not to mention just spinning a piece on it to take the whole thing in. If I ever had a burglary it could be a force multiplier.  

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