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Wedging


 Ken will be demonstrating how to wedge this mass of clay
and preparing it for potting.
You can easily prepare 50 to 100 pounds of clay at a time using this method.

Notice how the mass is made up of many small clumps of clay.  
Allow the clay mass to air and dry further.  
If the edges begin to get hard, cover loosely still allowing the clay to breathe.
 One or two days should be sufficient.



Now the mass has been turned over and resembles a taco shape.  
Cover the mass with the plastic.  All of the air bubbles need to be removed.
 Ken places his covered mass on the floor and walks on it.

 
He compresses the clay by walking on it, pushing the air bubbles out.  
Unfold the plastic, re shape into a ball, re cover, place on the floor and repeat the process.

   

Repeat the clay dance again


Once the clay loses its stickiness and the plastic pulls away from the clay,
it can be cut into blocks and placed in a covered plastic container until ready to wedge.


Cut the clay into manageable pieces approximately 10 to 20 pounds each.

 

Start by compressing the clay downward
on your wedging table.  Using a rocking motion
continue compressing the top of the clay inward.

    

Work the clay continually pushing the top
downward towards the center.
This will work the first part of the clay
towards the center of the mass.
Your are almost rolling your clay similar
to kneading dough.

As with dough, continue until you have worked all of the air from the clay forming a ball.
 If bubbles are present repeat the wedging process.  

Remember trapped air bubbles can cause your piece to fail
while throwing, drying, bisquing.
This can be disastrous during firing.
The bubble can explode causing pieces to fly and possibly
hit other pieces causing the kiln load to shift and fall.



Using a wire, cut your clay in the center
checking for air bubbles and clay consistency.

Clay balls ready for throwing

 Next Step:  Preparing the Clay for throwing

Step 2  Throwing  

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