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Details for Potters, Manufacturing


Description

Operate production machines such as pug mill, jigger machine, or potter's wheel to process clay in manufacture of ceramic, pottery and stoneware products.

Tasks

  • Perform test-fires of pottery to determine how to achieve specific colors and textures.
  • Position balls of clay in centers of potters' wheels, and start motors or pump treadles with feet to revolve wheels.
  • Adjust wheel speeds according to the feel of the clay as pieces enlarge and walls become thinner.
  • Mix and apply glazes, and load glazed pieces into kilns for firing.
  • Move pieces from wheels so that they can dry.
  • Press thumbs into centers of revolving clay to form hollows, and press on the inside and outside of emerging clay cylinders with hands and fingers, gradually raising and shaping clay to desired forms and sizes.
  • Pull wires through bases of articles and wheels in order to separate finished pieces.
  • Raise and shape clay into wares such as vases and pitchers, on revolving wheels, using hands, fingers, and thumbs.
  • Smooth surfaces of finished pieces, using rubber scrapers and wet sponges.
  • Verify accuracy of shapes and sizes of objects, using calipers and templates.
  • Design clay forms and molds, and decorations for forms.
  • Maintain supplies of tools, equipment, and materials, and order additional supplies as needed.
  • Teach pottery classes.
  • Prepare work for sale or exhibition, and maintain relationships with retail, pottery, art, and resource networks that can facilitate sale or exhibition of work.
  • Operate pug mills to blend and extrude clay.
  • Operate jigger machines to form ceramic ware, such as bowls, cups, plates, and saucers.
  • Operate drying chambers to dry or finish molded ceramic ware.
  • Start machine units and conveyors and observe lights and gauges on panel-board to verify operational efficiency.
  • Examine finished ware for defects and measure dimensions, using rule and thickness gauge.
  • Adjust pressures, temperatures, and trimming tool settings as required.

Interests

  • Realistic - Realistic occupations frequently involve work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They often deal with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery. Many of the occupations require working outside, and do not involve a lot of paperwork or working closely with others.
  • Artistic - Artistic occupations frequently involve working with forms, designs and patterns. They often require self-expression and the work can be done without following a clear set of rules.

Education, Training, Experience

  • Education - Most occupations in this zone require training in vocational schools, related on-the-job experience, or an associate's degree.
  • Training - Employees in these occupations usually need one or two years of training involving both on-the-job experience and informal training with experienced workers. A recognized apprenticeship program may be associated with these occupations.
  • Experience - Previous work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is required for these occupations. For example, an electrician must have completed three or four years of apprenticeship or several years of vocational training, and often must have passed a licensing exam, in order to perform the job.

Knowledge

  • Mathematics - Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
  • Administration and Management - Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources.
  • Customer and Personal Service - Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
  • Design - Knowledge of design techniques, tools, and principles involved in production of precision technical plans, blueprints, drawings, and models.
  • Sales and Marketing - Knowledge of principles and methods for showing, promoting, and selling products or services. This includes marketing strategy and tactics, product demonstration, sales techniques, and sales control systems.
  • Mechanical - Knowledge of machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.
  • Chemistry - Knowledge of the chemical composition, structure, and properties of substances and of the chemical processes and transformations that they undergo. This includes uses of chemicals and their interactions, danger signs, production techniques, and disposal methods.
  • Production and Processing - Knowledge of raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and other techniques for maximizing the effective manufacture and distribution of goods.
  • Fine Arts - Knowledge of the theory and techniques required to compose, produce, and perform works of music, dance, visual arts, drama, and sculpture.

Skills

Related Careers

  • Etchers and Engravers
  • Jewelers
  • Prepress Technicians and Workers
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