#1  
Old 05-05-2010, 03:28 AM
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Default Cutting terracotta pot base?

Trying to make a home tandoor oven.

What is the easiest way to cut the base off a terracotta pot? I was thinking about drilling holes in it, and sort of chiseling it off eventually? Good idea or..?
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Old 05-05-2010, 11:03 AM
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Default Re: Cutting terracotta pot base?

Angle grinder with cut off disk. Get the pot wet and keep cutting zone wet.
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Old 05-05-2010, 01:30 PM
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Default Re: Cutting terracotta pot base?

Use a diamond blade on the angle grinder.
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Old 05-05-2010, 03:45 PM
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Default Re: Cutting terracotta pot base?

Yes, diamond blade on an angle grinder. my "fire bricks" are basically terra cotta and I cut 1000 bricks that way.
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Old 05-05-2010, 07:11 PM
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Default Re: Cutting terracotta pot base?

Um, why are you cutting off the bottom? Tandoors have closed bottoms, don't they?
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Old 05-06-2010, 07:04 AM
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Default Re: Cutting terracotta pot base?

Thankyou for the replies. Is it possible I can saw it off, or will the terracotta chip/smash? Not sure where to go get it cut, and I don't trust myself to operate machinery as dangerous as that.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Archena View Post
Um, why are you cutting off the bottom? Tandoors have closed bottoms, don't they?
I'm hoping to use 2 pots, to allow have more heat flowing aruond inside the tandoor. I will cement them together using fire cement.
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Old 05-06-2010, 10:02 AM
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Default Re: Cutting terracotta pot base?

Quote:
Originally Posted by oasis786 View Post
Is it possible I can saw it off, or will the terracotta chip/smash?
If you don't have access to a power tool you can use a hacksaw with an abrasive blade, but that might take you a long time to cut.
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Old 05-06-2010, 06:49 PM
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Default Re: Cutting terracotta pot base?

Ah, okay. Makes sense now.

Don't hit the terra cotta - yes, it will chip like crazy! Get an angle grinder like the guys said. Also, you might want to give it some drying time before final assembly. The interior will be exposed to the water and will likely absorb some. Steam inside ceramics is very, very bad. It'd probably just spall although it might possibly 'explode' a portion (pop off a section) - either way not a good thing.

Once it's all assembled you shouldn't have a problem keeping it dry enough - and it might not even matter. It just depends on how hard the interior is - terra cotta isn't all that hard to begin with.
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Old 05-06-2010, 07:31 PM
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Default Re: Cutting terracotta pot base?

The low tech way is to put tape around the side you want to keep at the point you want it cut to. Use a sharp knife or something and scribe the edge to around 10% of the thickness of the pot. You can then gently beat on the part that you do not want to keep, and it will break off leaving a crisp outer edge and a decent cut through the pot.

A diamond blade on an angle grinder would do the same thing in seconds and much cleaner, though.
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Old 05-06-2010, 07:40 PM
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Default Re: Cutting terracotta pot base?

They sell a carbide hook scribe for score-and-break work on tiles and wonderboard, for the procedure that Tscarborough describes above, but a cheap angle grinder is a worthwhile thing to have around, and frankly, not that much more expensive.

Ask around among your acquaintances, surely someone has one that they could lend you, and give you a quick tutorial, if you're nervous about it.

Also, you're going to need a side hole at the bottom for air and fuel. That would be hard to pull off with a score-and-break technique.

Just work outside, and be careful about you eyes and lungs. That dust gets all over.
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