Many beautiful buildings and homes use stunning tiles for walls, floors and sometime ceilings. They are functional and decorative and are highly prized. As far as colors, designs and patterns go, the possibilities are endless with the use of kitchen tile and bathroom tile work. Have you ever wondered just how tile is made? Perhaps the following will give you some helpful information.
What is a tile?
Tiles are a kind of ceramic also known as whitewares. The American National Standard Institute states that tiles are categorized in terms of their production methods and make. For example, a ceramic tile is made of natural clay or porcelain. Tiles may also be made from other materials such as bamboo, metal, rubber, perlite wood, mineral wool, slate, marble or glass tile. They can be formed molds and then fired in ceramic slurry.
The process of making tiles
There are a variety of ways to make tiles, based on the materials that are being used. Clay tiles are the most common type of tile produced due to the availability of the materials. The clay is combined with various substances producing the consistency desired for color and durability. This is also dependent on just what results the producer is looking for. Clay that is chalky is the preferred choice for manufacturers who wish to make tile with a white surface which will be easy to decorate or paint. Molded pieces are fired, cooled, decorated and glazed.
A marble tile is cut from a large sheet of stone, marble, clay or wood and processed depending on the maker’s specifications and their final usage. When creating a mosaic tile effect, they are often molded with the use of wooden or metal frames in order to create different forms and shapes. These can be further refined, mixing them with a variety of material and ceramic powders and then compacted. This process is also known as dust-pressing. Other tiles are inlaid with designs on their bodies, dried and then fired.