This Dave Cohen built kickwheel (@1978), made to a design by Paul Soldner was the only wheel we used for throwing until the early 1990s. Having taken a pounding for over thirty years it still spins with the vigour of youth.
With minimal maintainance amounting to replacing a few bearing units and some care
of the wooden splash tray, the outstanding design makes for a wheel that can take anything you can throw at it, or at least what we’ve thrown at it!
Over the years a few other wheels have come and gone, and even though we now have a couple of genuinely effective electric wheels, I’m sure the kickwheel will outlast them all. On top of that there are still certain processes which are only comfortably and conveniently possible on the kickwheel.
The wheelhead is wide and unfettered by any high-sided splash tray; an expanse of level marine ply a few inches below and infront of the wheelhead is all you get. This enables easy throwing of very wide based pots and the turning of very wide rimmed ones; up to nearly 24″, which is a just a bit big for our kiln.
The wheel is designed to easily accommodate all shapes and sizes of potter, with adjustable seat angle and height, wheelhead height, flywheel and footrest height and distance from seat to slip tray (useful for lanky-legged kickers).
It spins so efficiently that you get a reasonable amount of throwing time between kicks up to considerable weights.
Llike any kickwheel it does not require any power supply other than your own, but it may be simply rigged to take a motor attached to the flywheel.
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