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I've added too much vinegar to my clay and made it too sticky. Is there any fast way to get back the plasticity other than just slowly drying and then adding water back in? Would an alkaline solution work - a little bicarb in the water?

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    Vinegar is added to increase plasticity, so it may be that the problem is simply too much liquid. Before modifying the pH or adding more liquid, try letting a sample dry out a little, with occasional kneading. See if it becomes less sticky.
    – fixer1234
    May 10, 2020 at 22:33
  • I thought it made it more 'sticky' - great for joining as it breaks down the clay, but not for plasticity as such.
    – LeasMaps
    May 11, 2020 at 5:30
  • Find any solution?
    – rebusB
    Sep 22, 2020 at 21:31
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    Not really, but I think it was just too wet. This is the first time I've reused clay (my normal pottery class is closed while we get Covid under control in Australia) so it's all a learning process!
    – LeasMaps
    Oct 1, 2020 at 1:04

1 Answer 1

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try the following approach:

  1. Start by kneading the clay vigorously on a clean surface. After kneading for a while, repeatedly cut and compress the clay to further distribute the moisture.
  2. If you have access to the same type of dry clay, incorporate small amount of it into the sticky clay. Gradually add small portions while kneading and wedging, until the desired consistency achieved.
  3. As you mentioned by yourself, adding a small amount of bicarbonate of soda (baking soda) to water can create an alkaline solution. You may lightly spray the clay with this solution while kneading and wedging. Be cautious not to add too much of this solution, as it can make the clay too wet.

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