The Quick & Easy Pottery Tool Guide

What tools do I need for pottery? What are the best pottery tools? What tool is used for…

Do you have questions when it comes to choosing the right pottery tools? We can help! Shopping for new tools can feel overwhelming, especially for newer artists looking to build their collection. More seasoned artists may also struggle when it comes to trying something new or finding an updated replacement for an old favorite. Here at DiamondCore Tools, we love all things pottery and know a thing or two about choosing the right pottery tools, so we put together this helpful guide! Of course, we’re happy to help you select the best tools for your studio. If you have any questions, please let us know!

Pottery Carving Tools

When you’re looking for the right tools to finish your piece by carving or sculpting a design, you need the right carving tools.

What To Look For:

  • High Quality Materials: hardwood handles, ergonomic foam grips, and stainless steel blades
  • Curved Blades: for creating deep grooves
  • Straight Blades: for carving more shallow grooves, great for sgraffito techniques
  • Fine Point Blades: for fine detail work

When To Use Them:

  • Creating detailed lines and designs
  • Use for sgraffito, mishima, sculpting, and scraping
  • With bone dry or leather-hard clay

Finding the Right Carving Tools:

You can shop for carving tools by blade shape, blade type, and blade size, to find the right tools for each type of pottery you’re creating. The most popular pottery carving tools come with square tips, U-shaped tips, V-shaped tips and more unique tips, with curved, straight, and fine point blade types. At DiamondCore Tools, our blade sizes range from 1mm to 12mm.

Best-Selling DiamondCore Tools Carving Tools

Pottery Trimming Tools

Trimming your pottery pieces is so important, you need to have the right tools on hand for the job!

What To Look For:

  • High Quality Materials: hardwood handles and stainless steel blades that are sharp enough to trim clay that’s either too wet or too dry.
  • Look for blades that are the same sharpness on both sides for both right or left-handed use.
  • Blade Shapes: The shape of your trimming tool blade will heavily influence the work you do with it.
  • Handle Shapes: Trimming tool handles can have different tip shapes that often act as a bonus tool.

When To Use Them:

  • Trimming wet clay so the piece can be altered after
  • Great for carving, shaving, sculpting, scraping

Finding the Right Trimming Tools:

Pottery trimming tools will vary by blade shape, blade size, and handle shape. The most popular pottery trimming tools come with blades in all shapes and sizes. Some of our most popular tools have half dome, arc, slanted square, u-shaped tip, torch, spade, wedge and even avocado shaped blades. The handle shape is also an important element when selecting a trimming tool. We offer handles shaped like paddles, talons, and boats along with cone-shaped stylus, square-tipped, rounded-edge, and flat-head handles for the ultimate comfort and precision.

Best-Selling DiamondCore Tools Trimming Tools:

Diamond Stylus Tools (Sgraffito Tools)

You need great tools to create the pencil-like, intricate etching and detailing work of sgraffito designs. Diamond stylus tools in the right shapes and dimensions can really elevate your work!

What To Look For:

  • High Quality Materials: hardwood handles, ergonomic foam grips, and diamond tips
  • Long-lasting diamond sgraffito tips on both ends
  • Foam grip handles to reduce fatigue

When To Use Them:

  • For pencil-like freehand carving
  • For sgraffito detailing and arcs on dry clay
  • Carving, shaping, sculpting on drier clay
  • Cleanup of bisque lines/grooves

Finding the Right Diamond Stylus Tools:

When you need to make crisp lines in underglaze or slip, diamond stylus tools are a must-have! Choosing the right tool will depend on what you’re creating, look at both the size and shape of the diamond tip to understand what shapes and designs they are best suited for. DiamondCore Tools creates sgraffito tools with diamond tips on both ends for versatility! Make sure you’re purchasing the diamond stylus tools that will best suit your style and pieces.

Best-Selling DiamondCore Tools:

Diamond Stylus Tools 3-Piece Sgraffito Stylus Set (L1, L2, L3)

Pottery Sanding & Grinding Tools

Sanding and smoothing your pottery is an important part of finishing your work and can be done safely and efficiently with the right tools! You want tools that make smoothing and leveling your work easy, so look for tools that make the process faster and more efficient while still being careful. It pays to be choosy when buying new grinding discs, sanding pads and strips!

What To Look For:

  • Diamond grit is easier to use and works faster than sandpaper!
  • Check the hardness rating, diamond grit has a 7000 hardness rating, silicon carbide abrasive is only rated at 2400 hardness
  • Flexibility for getting in tight areas
  • Sanding pads that can be used wet or dry
  • Grinding discs that are premounted and permanently attached to a bat for pottery wheel use

When To Use Them:

  • Sanding pads and strips smooth off high-fired clay, glaze, bisqueware, tile, stone or glass
  • Sanding pads and strips are great for removing a sharp chipped edge
  • Diamond grinding discs remove high-fired glaze drips or high-fired ceramic
  • Level a warped pot with the right grinding disc
  • Smoothing the foot, sides or rim of a ceramic piece
  • For smoothing glaze drips or sharp edges
  • Remove high-fired glaze drips or high-fired ceramic
  • Leveling kiln shelf posts and furniture
  • Grinding chipped pots

Finding the Right Pottery Sanding & Grinding Tools:

You can purchase pottery sanding and grinding tools in different shapes (discs, pads, or strips) and by grit. The smaller the grit number, the coarser it is. DiamondCore Tool’s sanding strips come in grits of:

  • 60 (coarse)
  • 120 (medium)
  • 240 (medium fine)
  • 400 (fine)
  • 800 (ultra fine)

Our diamond sanding pads and grinding discs come in grits of:

  • 60 (coarse) for heavy glaze or high-fired clay removal
  • 120 (medium) general purpose, leveling a pot or grinding
  • 240 (medium fine) for smoothing

You should also be able to select the corner shape of your sanding pads, rounded corners and square corners are very popular. When shopping for grinding discs, different diameters are available, 8” and 12” are the most useful.

Best-Selling DiamondCore Tools Pottery Sanding & Grinding Tools:

Ceramic Rotary Tool Accessories

Easily clean up and make clean holes in your ceramic pieces with the right rotary tool accessories! Whether you’re looking to make holes, remove glaze drips, or get rid of stuck-on kiln wash, the right rotary tool accessories will make your life easier. Shop for rotary tools that work with bisque or high-fired ceramic, tile, stone, or glass to give you the perfect finish. Rotary tools come in a variety of sizes and shapes and can be purchased as sets or individually to meet your needs, so shop wisely to get exactly what you need.

What To Look For:

  • Rotary tool burrs made of solid diamond grit and metal down to the shaft
  • The right hole size, grit, and shape for your specific needs
  • Great craftsmanship for a long lifespan, as the tool wears a new layer of diamonds should be exposed

When To Use Them:

  • Grinding glaze drips, bisque or high-fired ceramic, tile, stone or glass
  • Removing sharp edges, smooth chipped edges
  • Shaping or cleanup of bisque spots
  • Removing kiln shelf debris
  • For polishing to improve the look of glaze or glass
  • To remove or reduce scratches
  • Make holes for fountains, sink basins, fittings, fixtures etc.
  • Drilling holes for plugs, hanging pieces, a drain hole for a plant

Finding the Right Ceramic Rotary Tools:

Whether you’re using a Dremel rotary tool, or something else, the right sizes and shapes of rotary tool accessories is important!

Shop by size, shape, and grit to curate the right selection of accessories for your studio! DiamondCore Tools has a great selection of ceramic rotary accessories in must-have shapes like bullet, cone, cylinder, dome, round and slim for a large variety of applications and uses. We also have great drill sets for making clean holes in your work and a polisher set our customers rave about!

Best-Selling DiamondCore Tools Rotary Tool Accessories:

If you have any questions when it comes to choosing and buying the right pottery tools, we’re here to help! 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!

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