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Peter Angel

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  1. Peter Angel

    Making terra cotta bricks

    Hello all, This failed badly. The thick bricks (2.5" - 3") cracked when I put them in the sun. I did some research. Big cracks happen when you don't use enough sand. I found the following recipe on Wikipedia: Normally, bricks contain the following ingredients:[15] Silica (sand) – 50% to 60% by weight Alumina (clay) – 20% to 30% by weight Lime – 2 to 5% by weight Iron oxide – ≤ 7% by weight Magnesia – less than 1% by weight Can some please tell me what I would use for lime? Getting closer! Pete
  2. Peter Angel

    Making terra cotta bricks

    Quick update. I tried 3 layers of newspaper at the bottom of the brick but it buckled and wrinkled badly when it got wet and it left a deep texture into the bottom of the brick that I had to smooth out. No big deal but it was one addition step. Then I tried 1 layer of aluminium foil at the bottom of the brick. Foil has 2 sides. A textured side and a smooth side. I used the smooth side. It worked perfectly! Peeled off cleanly. Pete
  3. Peter Angel

    Making terra cotta bricks

    Thanks for your help. Mark C, if I use dry canvas, will the bottom of the brick pick up the texture weave of the canvas ? Pete
  4. Peter Angel

    Making terra cotta bricks

    Hello all, I have made a brick mould. It's made of wood and I keep it wet before adding my clay. I'm using an ancient roman brick recipe of 60% terracotta powder and 40% fine river sand...(river sand has minimal shell in the sand). I works really well and the brick mold lifts straight up leaving a perfectly formed brick. Here is a you tube video that shows the concept. My mold is less wet than his. I let it drain for a minute. It's closer to damp than wet. The big problem I am having is the wet clay brick sticks to the bottom wooden board. Even after 3 days it's still stuck. Any solutions? Pete
  5. Peter Angel

    Making terra cotta bricks

    We have a similar kind of soft brick in Australia called convict sandstock. Its a very popular recycled building material and costs the same as brand new brick even though theyre 100+ years old! Each brick has its own personality.
  6. Peter Angel

    Making terra cotta bricks

    These aren't mine! I think these have been carved after firing. This is the type of thing I want to make. Pete
  7. Peter Angel

    Making terra cotta bricks

    Dear all, Thanks for your replies. I want to make something a bit like this:
  8. Peter Angel

    Making terra cotta bricks

    Triolaz, thanks, do you have the proportions of redart/sand/ball clay that he uses? Pete
  9. Dear all, i want to carve some bricks while they are soft, then sun dry them, then fire them extra slowly, then carve the detail into the well fired brick. I've researched this and all the instructions tell me to dig up natural clay. I can't do this as i live in the city and i don't have land to dig. Would it work if i buy some terra cotta powder and silica sand, add water, and mix it thoroughly? Regards, Pete

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