Metal clay cutters come in two varieties: those that are similar to cookie cutters and those that are like cheese slicer. The cookie cutter style tools are used to create uniform designs or easily replicate a complex outline. The process of making these cutters is relatively easy, but can be dangerous as the flexible metal used has sharp edges. Cheese slicer style cutters are made by suspending a wire between two handles. The wire is held taut and can be used to divide large chunks of clay.
- Skill level:
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Things you need
- Aluminium ribbon
- Small clamp
- Metal glue
- Metal rasp
- 1/2 Inch dowel
- Cheese slicer wire
Draw or print a picture of the shape you would like to outline.
Lay the string over the image tracing the border of your desired cutter.
Cut a piece of metal ribbon 2 inches longer than the length of string.
Bend the metal to match the shape of the image using dowels, the table edge, pliers and your hands. Place the ribbon on top of the image as you bend to get accurate curves.
Trim the unused ribbon to 1 inch. Overlap the beginning and end of the ribbon.
Glue the edges of the ribbon together. Clamp the cutter. Dry for 1 to 3 days as directed by glue packaging.
Lay the cutter on a stiff surface. Curve the edge of the ribbon all the way around the image by running the rasp over the edge from the outside in. Work in only one direction to avoid wavy edges.
Instruct hardware supplier to cut dowel into two, 3 to 5 inch lengths.
Cut a small notch in the middle of each dowel.
Slide the looped ends of the wire onto each dowel.
Hold the wire with the pliers while turning the dowel to tighten the loop in the wire and secure the wooden handle.
Sand the edges of the dowel as desired.
Tips and warnings
- Foam, glue or liquid latex may be applied to the finished cutter to make it easier to handle.
- Failing to curve the edge of the wire cutter with the rasp may result in cuts during use. Test the cutter before using it regularly.
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