Smooth yixing teapot?
While buying a yixing teapot I was stuck between two teapots, the owner of the tea shop suggested I should go with the smoother one because the maker of it spent more time smoothing it out making it higher quality. Is this true or are smoother yixing fake?( the yixing teapot was smooth but not shiny and the inside was coarse)
Pots such as Jian Shui are smoothed in the exterior with river rocks, by hand. The extra work has nothing to do with how it effects the tea, factors that do are the clay composition and whether the type of tea you plan to brew is better in a thick walled pot, thin walled, high fired etc. The seller might have wanted to sell you a more expensive pot for reasons other than tea brewing.
To my experience, smooth Yixing teapot could be the sign of a cheaper pot, although not necessarily is.
Cheaper teapot are made with a mould, rather than slab built on a turning table.
Even the moulded teapot are partially handmade, since the artist shall place by hand the clay in the mould and shall put the pieces together by hand as well; e.g. attaching the handle to the main body.
Moulded teapot tends to be smoother, because the ceramic inner side of the mould is extremely smooth.
Slab built teapot are not pressed in a mould, but rather turned on a table by hand; look at this short video I took last spring: https://www.facebook.com/video.php?v=664799120294101&set=vb.567253313382016&type=2&theater
That said, not all moulded teapots are of same quality and many are definitely fine art pieces.
The price range is even higher for slab built teapot; it is barely impossible to find one for less than 200 USD on the Chinese market and prices can range up to more than 30000 USD, depending on artist’s ranking, clay quality and complexity.