Everything You Need to Know About our Handheld Clay Extruders
Why do I need handheld clay extruders?
These sharp, adjustable tools make it easier than ever to consistently make your feet and handles! They work on a variety of clay types and are ideal for hand builders and also useful for throwers. Designed for both right- and left-handed use, our clay extruders are so easy to use and let you avoid all that pulling for minimal debris and easier clean up!
Each of these tools are based on a main shape but can and should be used as you see fit. R1 to R3 are generally geared more toward feet, but we have seen plenty of other uses, such as rims or tiny sections of the extrusion added to the surface of a piece. R4 to R6 are generally geared towards handles but again, they are a great option for a lot of other uses. R7 to R9 are meant to push the bounds of creativity, creating extrusions that would otherwise be very difficult to form by hand.
How do they work?
Just slice it, trim it to length and attach! They were thoughtfully and expertly designed for creating clean, beautiful feet and handles for your ceramic pieces. The sharp, angled, stainless steel blade leaves clean edges and pulls through clay effortlessly, creating consistent, precise shapes. Create feet for slab-built platters, dishes or plates, as well as handles for mugs, pitchers and other vessels. DiamondCore’s advanced blade technology and depth control feature allow you to save time pulling a handle and get clean edges on your feet.
How are our tools different?
When designing these new tools, we had a lot of inspiration! We wanted to create something that was a completely new type of tool compared to everything else we had. There are nine tools in the series by design.
Potters of all skill levels and styles have a unique relationship with making handles or feet, and often it's a struggle that some completely avoid. This is a problem that hand-builders and wheel-throwers both share, and there hasn't been a lot of innovation in this area. Using the knowledge we have of carving and trimming tools — and how they best move through clay — we developed a new type of blade where the "debris" created was actually the final product we were trying to make.
We optimized the angle, contour and size of this new blade such that it created a simple extrusion in the shape of a trapezoid. This became the R1. Working with the same blade design, we formed countless prototypes trying different shapes and sizes. We asked artists to test these prototypes while taking video so we could evaluate all the feedback carefully. Some artists liked a certain shape for feet that others liked for a handle, and some used the tools for completely different applications.
The next stage of development is where we came up with the depth ski that was adjustable and could produce various sizes of the main shape. This turned a single tool into many and was truly a novel concept for ceramic artists. The nine tools that are seen here are a mix of shapes that were favored by us and artists and some that are meant to push the creativity of those who use them.
- R1 Trapezoid Handheld Clay Extruder - Slices through a slab to make a trapezoid foot shape. Max blade width is 17 mm X height 19 mm, min. blade width 16 mm X height 14 mm.
- R2 Triangle Handheld Clay Extruder - Slices through a slab to make a triangle foot shape. Max blade width 19 mm X max height 20 mm, min. blade width 17 mm X min. height 14 mm.
- R3 U Shape Handheld Clay Extruder - Slices through a slab to make a U foot shape. Max blade width 19 mm X max height 18 mm, min. blade width 15mm X min. height 10mm.
- R4 Concave Handheld Clay Extruder - Slices through a slab to make a handle shape that is concave in the middle. Max blade width 21 mm X height 14 mm, min. blade width 21 mm X height 7 mm.
- R5 Middle Ridge Handheld Clay Extruder - Slices through a slab to make a handle shape with a ridge in the middle. Max blade width 20 mm X max height 18 mm, min. blade width 19 mm X min. height 10 mm.
- R6 Oval Handheld Clay Extruder - Slices through a slab to make a basic oval handle shape. Max blade width 21 mm X max height 16 mm, min. blade height 21 mm X min. height 10 mm.
R7 Single Line Handheld Clay Extruder - Slices through a slab to make a handle shape with a single line down the middle.
R8 Double Line Handheld Clay Extruder - Slices through a slab to make a handle shape with double lines down the middle. Max blade width 21 mm X max height 1 5mm, min. blade width 20 mm X min. height 9 mm.
- R9 Double Round Handheld Clay Extruder - Slices through a slab to make a double rounded handle shape. Max blade width 22 mm X max height 13 mm, min. blade width X min height 9 mm.
What’s next for this series of tools?
Developing this series was a lot of fun for our team! We tried a lot of concepts that didn't quite work the way we wanted them to. What may look like some bent metal on a piece of wood is actually an artistic engineering challenge that has been refined over and over into its simplest form. After a lot of work and many iterations, ending up with a final product that was elegant and highly functional was very satisfying. We are already looking forward to expanding the R series after seeing what all artists out there can create with them and we're definitely interested in what shapes people may want to see in the future.
We are so excited to hear your thoughts on our new line of tools! If you have any questions when it comes to choosing and buying the handheld clay extruders, we’d like to help. Just leave a comment here on the blog, send us an email or get in touch with our team on social media; we’re on Facebook and Instagram!
Deb Yates Bunnell – Thank you for your support of the extruders and the suggestion of an individual container. Although we have removed as much plastic packaging as we can, we are aware of this need and want to provide the best possible solution that meets your requirements in addition to our sustainability goals. We encourage our customers to reuse our corrugated boxes and even include instructions to fold our small tool box into a tool stand.
I love the handle extruders! Please consider a adding a plastic individual container for the extruders!