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- 29-June 10
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Posted 28 Apr 2013Hi Clay lover! I agree with you! I bought a cheap second-hand pug mill because I find pugged clay much easier to throw, and honestly can't deal with kneading by hand. I do find the pugging hard work at times, but not as hard or time consuming as reclaiming by hand. As I don't drive it costs me as much in delivery costs as to buy clay, so reclaiming is a necessity. In the UK clay is expensive and carriage costs horrendous! I am not a professional potter - just someone who loves clay and potting. As I don't sell my pots for profit, but for church funds, I need to keep my costs down. Also I am a bit ancient with all the usual aches and pains and at times don't deal with scraps when I should so they can be at various stages of dryness. I try to guess how much water (or slip) to add to the clay as I put it into the hopper and usually it comes out alright. If it is not quite right I put it through the mill again, adjusting the water content. I am aware this is a bit haphazard, but if it gives me a few more years' potting I am happy to do it. This method wouldn't be for people making a living from their pottery, but there are many amateur potters who shouldn't be afraid of making life a bit easier for themselves, especially the older ones of us, who keep thinking they will have to give up the pottery "soon" - but can't bear the thought of actually doing it. I didn't start potting until I was 60 years old, and smashed my shoulder shortly after that, but 12 years later (after two ops on the shoulder) still manage to enjoy making pots - so find a way, whether it means buying a pug mill or whatever else is needed.
You young ones enjoy your workouts kneading your clay and do your best to keep fit - long may you continue without needing a pug mill!
Posted 28 Apr 2013All of the above makes perfectly good sense.
I LOVE MY PETER PUGGER!
I do a lot of hand building, and the scraps go straight back into the pugger,it is sealed and they don't dry out in there, When the hopper is full, push mix, wait a moment, push de air, wait 30 sec. push pug, out comes PERFECT clay, exactly the consistency I want for the job I'm doing.
For throwing, often the bagged clay is too stiff for me, I buy in quanity and some of it has been around a while. I cut it into 6 pieces, throw it in, add water and in 5 minutes have perfect clay for throwing. It has saved me MUCH muscle work just that way.
For using the large 5" wall extruder, I can do the same and struggle less to push stiff clay through that.
It also acts as a motorized horizontal extruder, super thing when I'm weaving baskets and need lots of strips. I also run test tiles out that way.
Very little of what I use it for is actual reclaim, the clay never dries out, it goes right back through the pugger and then is wraped in plastic and store in a plastic tote on the floor to be used.
Other thing, I am much more likely to scrap a not so great pot now, it's no work to recycle. I need to use all my clay, my brain is not happy with 'throw it away'.
Also,. I never realized how much better to throw the pugged clay is, no matter how much I wedge, the clay was never as nice as it is out of the pugger. t has really improved my throwing.
Nuff said, love the thing. I have MUCH less muscle trouble, no more carple tunnel issues, and make many more pots that I did before I got it.
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