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cardew and spouts

updated wed 2 feb 11


Elizabeth Willoughby on tue 1 feb 11

Regarding the question about trimming spouts. I have always found a very
good explanation from Cardew's "Pioneer Pottery".
"During throwing, the clay particles have received a spiral twist or torque=
going in a clockwise direction. In drying and firing, this causes a slight
movement (sometimes nearly 20 degrees) onwards in the same direction, i.e.,
the clockwise twist continues instead of untwisting." I use a bamboo
skewer to compress the clay on the inside of the spout as I throw. They ar=
cheap, smooth, and do a good job. . .and then easily thrown away. I trim
with the spout facing me, left side down, to about 5 0'clock. This is for
cone 10 porc.
I have found that using earthenware clay, cone 6 clays, and also clay with
grog, that there is almost no twist in the spouts. It is important to know
your claybody. Once, I switched the porcelain that I was using which has
some ball clay in it, to a grolleg porcelain without any ball clay. I
trimmed in the usual manner, and when I opened the kiln, the spouts were AL=
facing straight up. Boy, do you ever learn a lot from one's mistakes.
Best to all,
Liz, waiting for the storm, for yet more snow.

Liz Willoughby
Ontario, Canada