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Drying Tiles


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#1 Ray Bright

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Posted 22 July 2012 - 08:55 AM

I'm making 5" diameter, disks, finished at 1/2" think. The edge will be beveled slightly. These are to be put into a wooden object, so they must be able to stand up outdoors.

What body should I use? And how do I prevent warping and cracking during drying?

Ray

#2 Chris Campbell

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Posted 22 July 2012 - 10:59 AM

This is a hard one to answer without more info and you might get more views if you ask again in the "In the studio" part of the forum.
The more info could include your level of experience so people can tailor their replies ... also your firing options and cone temp that you want. Is it a functional or decorative object and will you be glazing it?

Chris Campbell
Contemporary Fine Colored Porcelain
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#3 Stephen Robison

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Posted 22 July 2012 - 12:45 PM

I'm making 5" diameter, disks, finished at 1/2" think. The edge will be beveled slightly. These are to be put into a wooden object, so they must be able to stand up outdoors.

What body should I use? And how do I prevent warping and cracking during drying?

Ray



I have been working with tiles for some time now and find a high degree of particle size to be the best clay and dryer clay, ( stiff clay you may not want to throw), helps with less shrinkage. But the main answer in drying that has helped me make nice flat tiles is to either flip them once they start to become rigid and or use dry wall with taped edges to create uniform drying. Think of it this way, the surface of your tile is like a skin and as it dries it becomes taught in it's shrinkage and pulls the tile into a warp. If you flip your tiles or use dry wall to have both sides of the tile drying at the same time that skin is pulling equally on both sides and helps to prevent warpage. One other consideration is in the actual making of the slab for the tile. Remember the fact that clay has a memory and when the slab is bent it will remember that bend. So when handling the slab try not to manipulate it at all! Try and flip it from canvas to board and then cut tile and leave it. Another great and maybe the best method for making the tile is to press it with an arbor press into a mold. This technique would allow the maker to use very little water content. Think bricks, many brick makers use around 4-10 percent water content and hydraulic pressure for their bricks. They do not want warped bricks, which is great for us when building our kilns. One other technique is to extrude tile with a pugmill, I am not to sure how that technique works but am investigating that this fall! Good luck with your project!
STEPHEN ROBISON
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