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nrsmdwf

Tile warping in glaze fire

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I've never used a top layer of fabric rolling out with a chunk of round closet rod and sticks. I have a sheet of plywood with canvas permanently mounted for a base, then I just have to lift and flip the slab a few times between rolling. That'll save you some work peeling, and it results in a nice stable slab if you make sure you flip it enough times. I also dry between two sheets of drywall stacked (weight!) so they dry evenly. Once I get to the final thickness, I try to keep any manipulation to flip/flopping between boards so I'm not bending the tile, let them set up until stiff then do my final trimming.

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Re the grog problem - I find using a rubber rib to smooth slabs works better than anything else. The yellow Mud Tools rib works very well. Anything else just seems to raise the grog. If I need to wipe something on slab work, I try to use a chamois rather than a sponge. Anything that wipes away the small clay particles will make the grog more apparent. Perhaps putting fabric over the slabs as you roll them is lifting those small particles, like the opposite of using terra sig.

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Once again, excellent ideas!

 

 

I haven't tried the slip idea yet - concerned it will fill in my impressions/stamps. But recently, I tried drawing into the clay, and liked the ease of it, so may try the slip with that. I need to look for a slip from clay with similar shrinkage as the main clay body, right?

 

I had been using the two pieces of sheetrock (wall board) in the past, but I'm actually getting better results from the open racks right now. Probably because of the change in clay body. Also allows for my occasional tiles with an added on surface decoration.

 

Also have used a rib (wood) to smooth the slab surface (need to try the rubber one) ... but never thought about the fabric taking some clay with it .... basically it seems to be just wet, but might be contributing. I don't think I could pick up and flip slabs without deforming them ... they are usually about 20 x 6 inches (to cut out 4 - 4 1/2 inch tiles). That's where I'm using the fabric to be able to slip a piece of luan under the slab to flip it.

 

This forum and site has been SOOO amazing!

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Using a sheet of plastic rather than fabric might help. The plastic would not absorb water or clay. If I need to lift a slab to drape it over a form, I leave the plastic on the slab until I have it in place. I have a box of the economy plastic drop cloths from Lowe's. they are even thinner than dry cleaning bags, can be stretched to make them perfectly smooth, and are very flexible.

 

I have had a lot more problems with warping of slabs made with a slab roller than slabs rolled by hand.

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