Is it the Object or the Finish?


Unsanded very coarse clay that might require lots of sanding
to make clean.

I bought a name not too long ago from a buddy who runs a mid-size
woodworking store. He was making a number of dozen walnut tables for
a restaurant and ending them with pre-catalyzed lacquer. He
despatched off a pattern of the end to the restaurant proprietor, who
got here again with an objection.

The restaurant had employed knowledgeable potter to make the
dishes (good!). And the plates and bowls scratched the end
after they had been slid throughout the floor. The proprietor didn’t need
to make use of tablecloths or place mats as a result of the walnut within the
tabletop was so lovely. What to do?

Because it occurs, my spouse is knowledgeable potter. I believed I
knew the reply, however I additionally thought it greatest to debate the
drawback along with her. She mentioned the potter the restaurant employed simply
wasn’t sanding the bottom of the pottery clean sufficient. The
backside didn’t have to be polished, simply clean to the contact so
it wouldn’t scratch.

My spouse defined that doing this can be a lot of labor. She spends
lots of time smoothing the bases of all her pots.

There are a variety a methods to do that, normally with top quality
sandpaper. She makes use of silicon carbide paper with a material backing.
However she agreed manufacturing store making plates and bowls
may arrange an meeting line and use a hand-held sander. She
additionally mentioned there are flat grinding stones that match proper on a
potters’ wheel accessible from potter suppliers. However the bases
of the pots need to be nearly completely flat for these stones
to work properly.

She additionally cautioned that clays are completely different, some come out of
the kiln rougher than others. So the potter must
determine the system that works greatest for the clay she or he is


The sanded base of one in every of my spouse’s bowls.

What concerning the end? Are there finishes which can be more durable than
pre-catalyzed lacquer, onerous sufficient in order that they wouldn’t be
scratched even when the dishes weren’t sanded properly?

There are more durable finishes, the almost definitely candidate being
catalyzed (conversion) varnish. The issue is tough
base on a pot goes to scratch nearly something. I don’t
suppose catalyzed varnish is extra scratch resistant than plastic
laminate (they’re each made with the identical resin, melamine
formaldehyde, generally referred to as simply melamine), and a tough pot
will scratch plastic laminate if slide throughout the floor.

So I recommended that my buddy have the restaurant proprietor discuss
with the pottery provider.

— Bob Flexner


Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: