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Undo an Old Pottery Repair

Once in a while I will buy a piece of pottery or ceramic that either has a crack or has been repaired.
Most of the time the repair job is a very sloppy one or very old and of course I think I can do better, so I get busy and try to fix it to my satisfaction.
Sometimes, some of my older repairs are starting to come apart, mainly because they have been made with the older type glue.
The glues of today are of much better quality and have a longer life.

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Altering a Greenware Piece
Check Porcelain for Repaired Spots
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Undo Old Pottery Repair
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This is a list of supplies that you will need:

plastic basin
hot water
paint remover
paint brush
razor blade
needle nose pliers
safety gloves

Softening The Old Repair.

Fill a plastic basin with boiling water, and soak the object for one hour.
It may be necessary to repeat the process several times until the adhesive bond weakens enough so the pieces can be separated.

If repeated soaks don’t loosen the old glue bond, brush paint remover onto all glued joints and let it sit for one hour.
Check once in a while to see if the pieces are loosening.
If not, repeat the process again.

Once the pieces have loosened, soak them again to soften the glue on the exposed edges.
Use paint remover if needed.
Rub off glue with plastic scrubbing pad and rinse pieces well.
Scrape off remaining glue with the razor blade.


If metal staples set in drilled holes were used in old repair, soak the pottery or ceramic in boiling water until staples can be wiggled.
Next, use needle nose pliers to carefully pull staples from the object.
Gently scrape off excess glue with a razor blade.
Then use cotton swabs dipped in hot water to remove remaining glue, use lacquer thinner for epoxy.
Rinse thoroughly and let dry for a day.

Tart Repair.

Put the glue on the break.
Set the repair and place the pottery or ceramic in the positioning box, which is a shallow box filled three quarters with dry beans or rice so that the piece stays balanced until the glue is completely dry which usually takes 24 hours.

Filling In Small Chips.

To repair chips that are 1/8 inch or less in depth, mix a small amount of slow setting clear epoxy.
Blend oil base hobby enamels into the epoxy with a toothpick to create a shade that closely matches the spot where the chip is on the item.
Use only enough paint to tint the glue, too much will thin the epoxy.
Dab epoxy on the chip and then smooth it with a disposable brush until it’s flush with the surrounding area.
Let the repair dry for 48 hours.

For Your Safety.

Wear strong gloves when handling broken pieces of pottery, ceramic, ironstone, porcelain, or glass because their sharp edges can cause serious cuts.
When using glues, lacquer thinner, paint thinner, enamel paints or any other compound that contains toxic chemicals, work outside or in a well ventilated area.
Do not use any of these products near an open flame or by a kiln that is being fired.
Avoid contact with skin and eyes, but in case this happens, wash the area well with soap and water and consult a physician.

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Have you ever come up with a good idea while working with your handmade pottery and thought that you would like to share it with others? You have? Well, why not send it to us and we will add it to the tips page for all to see.

Handmade pottery can be a very gratifying hobby that produces fun and satisfying results. For many people it's an enjoyable release that is created by working an inanimate mound of clay into a beautiful work of art that you made through your artistic abilities.

The best way of starting out is to take a few lessons from Youtube. You will probably waste quite a bit in materials when you first get started. Figuring out how to truly make handmade pottery correctly and shape into what you want it to be can be quite an ordeal. The different tools that a normal shop will have can be fun to try. You will soon see which ones you like to use the most and then when you are ready you will know which ones to buy.

With the help of the internet, you can now purchase most if not all of your ceramic and pottery tools and supplies online. We are located far from any well supplied dealers and yet working with reliable ceramic and pottery suppliers online has allowed us to recieve most of our orders within a timely manner.

When you get all set up, just enjoy the hobby and have fun at it. Some people get pretty serious and start selling their creations at craft fairs and small stores, but others just like to create items for themselves, relatives, and friends. Whichever kind of handmade pottery you desire to endeavor, enjoy the hobby and have fun doing it.

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