US Art Supply LARGE 12″ Diameter Sculpting Wheel Review
A sculpting wheel is an important tool for any potter. It allows you to focus on creating a beautiful piece that features intricate design and texture, without having to handle your work. A smooth turning wheel also allows you to add plenty of detail to any piece, easily and evenly. But the sculpting wheel can be used for much more than just sculpting.
In fact, many cake decorators swear by using one of these wheels in order to make large cake decoration fast and easy. If you have your own home studio, then this sculpting wheel will quickly become a tool you’ll rely on for most pieces, whether you use it to make precise cuts and trims, or for needlework detail, this affordable banding wheel has a lot to offer in terms of convenience and quality.
If you love working in ceramics, clay design, sculpting, and pottery, then you’ll love what this sculpting wheel has to offer. The top and base of this model are made from heavy-duty cast iron that’s joined with heavy-duty ball bearings that promote seamless spinning. The wheel can hold up to fifty pounds, effortlessly, so you’re able to work on projects of all sizes.
Sculpting Wheel Rundown & Features
Whatever you want to call them, decorating wheels, sculpting wheels, banding wheels, or turntables, this type of device is commonly found in pottery studios.
This sculpting wheel can be used for hand building techniques from slab and coil building to moving pieces safely during different stages of the creation process. It can also be used for altering forms from darting, carving, and when combining thrown elements that are taken from the wheel, such as adding spouts, lids, handles and much more.
A banding wheel is also perfect for certain decorating techniques, such as creating bands of color with slip, stains, and underglaze. When it comes to glazing, you can use it for different types of brushwork techniques or if you’re spraying glazes to ensure an even coating. When used for airbrushing it will allow you to create highly detailed areas packed with consistent blending and colors.
- This model features a twelve-inch wheel head made from cast iron, so you know it’s built to last.
- The base of the wheel comes equipped with a non-skid rubber boot which holds the wheel securely in place. Normally you’d have to drill a hole in your worktable in order to provide the wheel with this type of security, but with this model, no drilling is necessary.
- The top of the wheel features concentric circles, which promote easier centering. The wheel’s rim gives the wheel additional momentum when it spins.
- The wheel itself is tall enough for the user to place their hand beneath the top and rotate it during use.
- This sculpting wheel only weighs in at ten pounds, which makes it easier to store or transport.
- The wheel is a nice size, featuring a good weight for the base. The bearing allows the wheel to move smoothly.
If you enjoy airbrushing or love working with clay, the top’s textured grip works beautifully to keep your piece securely in place.
When you spin the wheel, there’s just enough resistance to allow it to spin smoothly, in a seamless, yet controlled manner, as opposed to spinning wildly.
Sculptors who purchased this potter’s wheel also recommended the Skilled Crafter clay tool set, which comes with a wide range of sculpting tools that are essential for any throwing, trimming, texturizing or delicate detail work.
Pottery Wheel Pros & Cons
This model features a cast iron design and uses quality bearings for an improved user experience.
- The banding wheel is perfect for home use, with a base that’s wide and easy to turn. Because the wheel is very solid and heavy it can be used for larger projects. If you’re a potter, then this is one of those must-have tools your studio won’t be complete without.
- The wheel is perfect for working on vases, cups, bowls and any item that you want to decorate with great detail and precision. If you’ve ever glazed before then you know how difficult it can be to handle a piece and avoid getting fingerprints all over it.
- With this wheel, you’ll be able to quickly turn any piece so you can create detailed work with balanced designs.
- The banding wheel can be used by sculptors of all skill levels. The wheel rotates smoothly and is easy to control and hard to tip over, which also makes it a good option for beginners or younger users.
Cons: Functionally, this wheel works well, however, there were several complaints regarding the quality of the wheel’s finish. Some of these imperfections include bumps or gouges in the wheel head’s center and random small pinholes on the finish. However, consumers who complained about this issue still decided to keep the wheel given its quality performance.
Sculptor Wheel by US Art Supply Final Thoughts & Rating
The US Art Supply twelve-inch sculpting wheel is priced affordably and can offer plenty of versatility to any project. Providing a solid performance, quality construction, smooth turning, and excellent stability, for the price, this wheel is definitely a steal.
We loved the lightweight design which allowed up to easily transport it in a trunk or move it from place to place in the studio.
Even though it features a lightweight design it still offered enough stability to allow us to work on heavier clay projects considering it features a fifty-pound weight capacity, which is pretty impressive.
The wheel’s finish definitely isn’t perfect. You can see small holes or tiny gouges in a few areas on the surface, but overall, this issue in no way affects the wheel’s performance or quality.
Sculptors who purchased this banding wheel gave it an impressive rating of five out of five stars despite the minor flaws in the finish. This is a banding wheel that comes highly recommended and it’s a perfect match for any skill level or project size.