When my old buddy Frank Tucker sold his Cone Art Kiln Company to Shimpo he was in pretty tight with the boys in Japan. They were about to launch this silent but deadly weapon called the Whisper. Frank asked a few of his potter buddies what they would ask for in a new wheel. I responded- a decent splash pan, a better bat pin system and make the splash pans the colours of Sherill ribs- red, blue, green, yellow, pink etc. Go to pottery classes and count the man to woman ratio. Woman like fashion, women like colour and they are your customers. Well you can see how much they listened to me.
So at least my Thomas Stuarts are a nice powder coated green and blue. I still think the neon splash pans would be a HUGE marketing advantage.
I love bats. I have ever since I went to a workshop by legendary potter- Harry Davis. He threw everything on bats and said plainly-"Why build in distortion????"On a visit some many years ago to the studio of Hillsdale, Ontario potter Robin Hopper I saw the bat system that would make me a million dollars. A pin in the center of the wheel and one 2 inches out. This way you can have 4 inch bats. Want to make a porcelain saucer- you don't have to use a 12 inch bat. I bought a sheet of marine plywood and cut 4" bats. So outta a sheet of plywood ya get 288 bats. That's a lot of bats. How could you store 288 12" bats and how much would they cost? Oh yeah, mine remained square and I tell people don't watch the bat watch your clay.
PS: Frank bought back his kiln company from Shimpo and hey that blue colour that he is sporting on those double wall kilns is pretty dang sexy. Why did ya buy it? I liked the colour!!!!! Someone's listening!


Anonymous said…
You've got that right tony - we love having the right in point, over 20 years ago, in Hamilton, I got the well known Williams' wheel - made to order - when i came time to paint it, Al usually used 'gunpowder grey' - i had just painted the basement (studio!) in my house, sunshine yellow and i wanted the wheel painted 'watermelon pink' - he did it, but reluctantly!!! it looked totally stunning!

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