Jump to content
Yomama

Pugmill for tile extruding

Recommended Posts

Hello. 

I am making handmade ceramic tiles and I am having some problems with making them as flat as possible. 

Currently my process is 100 % handmade ( wedging, hand rolling with wooden roller...) and around 1/4 of the tiles warp too much to be used.

I use white stoneware with 25% chamotte size 0-0,2mm. I try really hard to not bend the clay while rolling and cutting tiles...

So my question is:

Would a pugmill like Peter Pugger VM-30TE get rid of my warping of tile problems?

Should I try a different / more suitable stoneware?

Anyone has any experience with tile making and wants to share the knowledge?

Any other suggestions?

Thank you.

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Commercially, tiles are made from (as far as I can remember) 100% talc and no water.   They are pressed under huge pressure and then fuse in the firing process.  The lack of water is why they don't shrink.

Follow the advice from @Babs and @Mark C. above, and slow, slow, slow drying.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
17 hours ago, Yomama said:

Hello. 

I am making handmade ceramic tiles and I am having some problems with making them as flat as possible. 

Currently my process is 100 % handmade ( wedging, hand rolling with wooden roller...) and around 1/4 of the tiles warp too much to be used.

I use white stoneware with 25% chamotte size 0-0,2mm. I try really hard to not bend the clay while rolling and cutting tiles...

So my question is:

Would a pugmill like Peter Pugger VM-30TE get rid of my warping of tile problems? How would you use the pugmill to make the tiles?

Should I try a different / more suitable stoneware? Has this clay worked for you in the past? If so, why change?

Anyone has any experience with tile making and wants to share the knowledge?

Any other suggestions? Just a question...What is the end use of the tiles? Are they to be used individually or in combination with others to cover a specific surface area? Can you provide pix of the end product?

Thank you.

 

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Pressing tiles rather than rolling them will reduce warpage. However warping can also occur because of the drying method. The edges dry faster than the middle, and warp up as they shrink. Slowing down the drying helps, as well as drying between layers of something absorbent like drywall.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have probably made a thousand tiles and don't have any problem with warping.   I roll the clay out on my slap roller one direction  on the thick side and then I turn it and roll it out to the right thickness with the clay  going the other direction.   I flip the rolled clay directly on the sheet rock and smooth any canvas marks off the surface.  Canvas marks on the back of the tile will help your mortar to stick.   If your clay seems wet you might give it some time before you flip it on the sheet rock.  The sheet rock surface will peel up if the clay is too wet,  it is also harder to use the tile cutter in wet clay.   I stack the layers of tile and sheet rock 3 or 4 high,  if it is thick tile I will change out the sheet rock after a couple of days.     Denice

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 8/1/2019 at 12:54 AM, Babs said:

Place your tiles between two boards to dry

Flip them daily

Sounds awful but dont wedge. Clay memory will make clay more likely to warp.

 

About wedging. Well I still have plent of cut-offs that I need to reuse. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
15 hours ago, JohnnyK said:

 

This pugmill also extrudes clay in a wide and thin so you just have to cut out the shape of a tile. No need to roll the clay... I saw that many handmade tile factories in USA work like this. 

This clay that I use now produces many warped tile. I try to slow down the drying. 

These tiles are used in a same way as industrial tiles - walls, low traffic floor.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
12 hours ago, Denice said:

I have probably made a thousand tiles and don't have any problem with warping.   I roll the clay out on my slap roller one direction  on the thick side and then I turn it and roll it out to the right thickness with the clay  going the other direction.   I flip the rolled clay directly on the sheet rock and smooth any canvas marks off the surface.  Canvas marks on the back of the tile will help your mortar to stick.   If your clay seems wet you might give it some time before you flip it on the sheet rock.  The sheet rock surface will peel up if the clay is too wet,  it is also harder to use the tile cutter in wet clay.   I stack the layers of tile and sheet rock 3 or 4 high,  if it is thick tile I will change out the sheet rock after a couple of days.     Denice

Thanks Denice. I am glad it works for you. Will try this stacking method to see if it makes the difference.

I am also interested in knowing what clay do you use for tiles and firing temperature.

And thank you all for your advice. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
6 hours ago, Yomama said:

About wedging. Well I still have plent of cut-offs that I need to reuse. 

Back to recycle bucket. When slaked down and dried on olaster board slam it tovether. Cut with wire anfmd slam together a number okjf times then slam into a block shape. Cut with wire to just about the thickness you require for tile and roll between guide sticks to the thickness okf the tile you are making. Cut your tikes and place on thr drywall board  cover with other board and so on.

If wedging and using offcuts immeduhhuately ypoou will get uneven moisture levemmms in your clay

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I make low fire tiles and C5/6 oxidation (electric) fired tiles.    The local ceramic supply store carries mostly Laguna clay so I choose from their selection,  occasionally I will special order some but the freight prices  cost more than the clay.  The low fire clay I use is  terracotta  and the C 5/6  I use a clay that is formulated for hand building.   I tend to work with pressed designs in the tile so the fired color and texture of the clay is important to me.  I am currently working on a project where I am using Laguna's  Red Standard,  they won 't be glazed and fire to a nice reddish terracotta.   I have used this clay before on the exterior and it has held up well to  ice and snow.    Denice

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, Denice said:

I use a clay that is formulated for hand building

This is important, a plastic body made for throwing is going to be more prone to warping than a sculptural or tile making body. If the clay isn't as plastic it doesn't have as much clay memory so warping is reduced.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I forgot to mention that I tape the edges of the sheet rock with duct tape,   this keeps sheet rock particles and dust out of your clay and your sheet rock will last longer.    If you don't have a truck sometimes the home stores will have cut pieces to sell.  The Lowes near me will cut it into fourths so I can get it in my car and I can cut it again at home.   You might want to cut off the tapered edge of the sheet rock.   Denice

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 hours ago, Denice said:

I forgot to mention that I tape the edges of the sheet rock with duct tape,   this keeps sheet rock particles and dust out of your clay and your sheet rock will last longer.    If you don't have a truck sometimes the home stores will have cut pieces to sell.  The Lowes near me will cut it into fourths so I can get it in my car and I can cut it again at home.   You might want to cut off the tapered edge of the sheet rock.   Denice

Thanks Denice. I already have some tiles I am drying between sheetrock/drywall. Really hope it makes a difference. If it works well I’m going to tape the edges as well.

Is there a website of yours where I can see your tiles or perhaps instagram or facebook page?

Thanks again

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, Babs said:

Great book
Handmade tiles by Frank Giorgini
ISBN 1-86351 -164-4
Sally Milne publishing.
Your local library may have it or get it in for you.
Very comprehensive.

Agreed, a great book. As it has been (re?)printed by several publishers it is perhaps best to give your library the title rather than details of a particular edition.
Handmade Tiles: Designing, Making, Decorating by Frank Giorgini

You can see the contents list at:
https://books.google.co.uk/books/about/Handmade_Tiles.html?id=PYrh8-kBNYEC&printsec=frontcover&source=kp_read_button&redir_esc=y#v=onepage&q&f=false
The first chapter, being a historical overview, gives a rather misleading impression of a very practical book.

BTW Bookfinder lists second-hand copies of the book at  ~$4.
https://www.bookfinder.com/search/?full=on&ac=sl&st=sl&ref=bf_s2_a1_t1_1&qi=eOQzb.AaQGULEGlA0YmFzKCBwI8_1497963026_1:7:2
...you may need to do a new search with your own currency and location.

Regards, Peter

PS You might try contacting  the originator of this thread, if they are still about:

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 7/31/2019 at 4:24 PM, Yomama said:

Hello. 

I am making handmade ceramic tiles and I am having some problems with making them as flat as possible. 

Currently my process is 100 % handmade ( wedging, hand rolling with wooden roller...) and around 1/4 of the tiles warp too much to be used.

I use white stoneware with 25% chamotte size 0-0,2mm. I try really hard to not bend the clay while rolling and cutting tiles...

So my question is:

Would a pugmill like Peter Pugger VM-30TE get rid of my warping of tile problems?

Should I try a different / more suitable stoneware?

Anyone has any experience with tile making and wants to share the knowledge?

Any other suggestions?

Thank you.

 

 

I replied  separately to your inquiry about the Peter Pugger.

I do have a bit of the lazy in me and look to find ways to reduce the manual labor involved in making tiles, especially flat ones. One approach was to find (even custom formulate) a high-grog tile body. The second was to keep the clay as low moisture as possible while still being in the workable range. The third was to dry wet tiles on closet shelving (the white wire shelving you find at Home Depot). The tiles themselves would sit on top of a strip of window screening to hold the shape of the tile when wet: this facilitated drying from below as well as from above. If the top sides of the tile still dried too fast, I use newspaper on top of the tiles to better equalize the drying process.  

Even the slab roller can affect warpage. The dual roller kind (like North Star) can reduce the bias in the clay that turns into warpage, and at least save you the step of flipping a slab over to roll again. I have a North Star and love it.

The Peter Pugger does create a very homogenous clay extrusion with maybe less warpage bias than more manual methods, but still a lot depends on the clay, the moisture in the clay, and the drying process.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use.