My old Harrow colleague Peter Willis asked about the gadget in the back of this photo (above), just behind my left hand. It’s a carborundum attached to a drill and the drill is mounted in a vice. It’s what I use for grinding spur marks off the bottom of pots. I have to sit the pots on little pointed spurs because I glaze the bottoms and otherwise they’d stick to the shelf when the glaze melts in the kiln. This method is a quick way of taking off the marks they leave.

But I’ve now decided to turn foot-rings on the bottom of pots instead, including tall shapes, so that the bottoms can be glazed, the foot wiped clean and the pot put directly on to the kiln shelf. Spurs are expensive because they can only be used twice and and spur marks are ugly. To be honest, I dislike turning because making a foot-ring takes longer than throwing a pot, but I’m applying the principle that you can never take too much trouble.


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