Using the Foot Trimming Tool

Using the Foot Trimming Tool

The Foot Trimming Tool is a really easy way to add a shaped foot to a piece.

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They're designed to be used on soft clay, as the final stage of throwing. it works as a combined shaping and undercutting tool:

It's important to think about the foot placement, as you would when trimming a foot into a piece. The advantage to doing it with the bowl this way up is that you can see both the inside and outside, in the way the bowl will be seen during use.

The tool can remove clay, but I would advise just using it to shape the clay that's there. This means throwing in such a way that there's not a lot of excess clay around the base. I use my thumbnail at the start of the second and third pull to move the excess clay around the base back into the wall. This is worth doing anyway, as it means that all the clay you wedged and centered is being used rather than cut off at the end of throwing.

When it comes to trimming the piece, I do one of two things. If it's a bigger bowl or a mug, I'll trim the inside of the foot, but with smaller pieces I'll just burnish and compress the foot. It allows you to make very neatly finished pieces very quickly.

And if anyone is wondering why the double ended ones have both cutters on the same side, try turning it over! There's nothing worse than being stabbed in the wrist by the other end of a tool every time you go to use it (I'm looking at you, Xiem)

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