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Slab And Coil Method Large Platters On The Potters Wheel
Do you like the look of a large "thrown"platter, versus a slab platter, but don't quite have the skills to start with a ball of clay to make one? Well, there is an alternative method that might just be the ticket!
We are going to make an 18" platter with a slab and large coil finished off on the potters wheel. Not only is it going to look great, it will give you a sense of accomplishment!
Grab a cup of coffee and follow me to the studio! The first thing we need to do is make a slab large enough to cut a 16" circle from. If you have a slab roller that's great... if not, you can use a dowel rod, and two pieces of wood the length and thickness you need.
Start with roughly half a block of clay (6-7lbs) and throw it down on a ware board at an angle to start stretching it. Rotate and flip the clay with every toss to get a somewhat symmetrical slab.
Once you have it stretched a bit, use your dowel rod and begin rolling it. Again, rotate and flip the slab occasionally.
Now that you have a fairly large slab, place one piece of wood (1/2" thick) on each side of the slab, and continue rolling until the clay is the thickness of the wood.
**Note** make sure the dowel rod is long enough to go past the clay onto the wood. This is how you will get an even thickness throughout.
I used two different size Plasti-Bats to make my platter. The first one is a 16" to cut a perfect circle from the slab, the second is 18", and I used this one for the wheel throwing part of the project.
**Note** if you cut the circle out on a ware board and place the 18" bat over it, you can easily flip the "sandwiched" clay onto the larger bat.
Put the large bat on your wheel head and smooth the clay with a damp sponge and tools if needed. You can also trim the outside edge to get a "centered" base if it's off center.
Make a large coil with roughly two pounds of clay and put it on the outside edge of the circle slab. **Make sure you score/slip both the base and the coil.**
Start the wheel spinning and put downward pressure on the coil to help secure it to the base.
Now that they are securely attached, pull upward on the coil to create a wall. Again, used any tools necessary to shape and trim this piece.
For this platter I used a Steve Tool, to design both the inside bottom, and the rim. I absolutely LOVE the way it looks but feel free to design your platter any way you want!