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Teapots are one of my favorite ceramic forms.  I love to make them, but they can be challenging. I prefer working on the wheel using Laguna Bmix clay. Making the body, the handle and the spout are no problem for me . One challenge I have is a lid that really fits well. I generally make a dome lid with a flange on the bottom. The lid seems to fit fine when the pot and lid are both constructed. Often there are warping problems with the opening of the pot warping, which I assume is the weight of the handle and spout or the manner in which I attach those. Also looking for ideas on favorite tools to punch holes in the pot before attaching the spout.I would appreciate any other helpful hints from fellow teapot makers.

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Is this a cone 6 body or high fire cone 10?

The opening should not be warping-is this area to thin? more clay needed ?

firing beyond the clay limits? B mix is just white stoneware and besides it uneven drying it should work fine.

I use a brass hole punch to make the spout holes-I have a few sets (kemper makes good ones) have a variety of sizes of punchs is a good idea as yoiu need a varity say for teapots and soap dishes or garlic keepers all different sizes work for different forms.

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I love to make teapots also, they are the considered ultimate form challenge for me as most potters. I wonder if you are putting your handles on with the lid on, and also what type of handles you are making, strap extruded or coil, over the top or down the side. . . etc. I usually do extruded handles down the side anymore, and attach them with the lid on the pot. I leave the lids on teapots all the time so as to assure the nothing causes warping of the rim of the pot. When you are handling teapots, as in putting on spouts, handles, or other things like simple ornamentation you can warp that top ring accidentally. Best to protect it with the lid. 

As to hole punches, I have a variety of hole punches that I use, many of them are simply made of thin pipe found at hobby or hardware stores. Another favorite of mine looks like a pipe that was cut to a point like a knife, but the curve and the cut allows you to make several different sized holes from the same tool, and they are all tapered.




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Thanks for the comments. I bisque at 04 and glaze fire at cone 5 holding for 5 minutes. I will try keeping the rim a little thicker. I pull my handles and let then dry for about an hour before attaching to the pot. Probably my biggest problem was not keep the lid in place while attaching the spout and handle. Here are some examples of my teapots.


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I don’t have any teapots documented, but I do make them on occasion. 

In terms of tools to drill holes with, my favourites are just drill bits. If I have a lot of holes to make, I’ll even use them in the drill. The trick is to wait until the pot is set up to a firm leather hard so that when you do the holes, the clay isn’t sticking to itself at all. Cleanup is negligible at that point. Waiting until the pieces are a bit firmer can also help eliminate some of the warping, because it’s easier to not accidentally distort things. 

Another approach can be to work really, really fresh: attach handles and spouts while everything is freshly thrown. Leave the body of the pot attached to the bat, and add your spout and handle wet. Throw the lid, and just let everything set up together. Use a blowtorch or heat gun on the flange so that the lid doesn’t stick, and when the pot has firmed up enough to cut off the bat, you have minimal finishing. With this approach, you likely aren’t including a built in strainer though. As a tea drinker I usually use a tea egg for loose leaf, and find it superior to the built in ones.


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