At Wade, we pride ourselves on having extensive knowledge of the ceramics industry, and are fully competent when offering advice for all types of customer scenarios.
We are aware of the many different types of ceramics and the wide range of characteristics that can be tuned for performance and aesthetic requirements.
Whatever the final material chosen, the following are good pointers to follow;
Be focused, clear and specific on the end use and the likely numbers required from the start of the design process.
Be aware that ceramic materials shrink when fired, and that fine detail tends to be lost during contraction or glaze application.
Be aware that ceramics contract to +/- 2% variation on a given size. This means that not every piece will be dimensionally the same and needs to be allowed for in the design.
Keep wall thicknesses even, ideally in the range 3 to 5 mm. Mixtures of thick and thin cross sections will be difficult to produce in most cases and will lead to cracking or distortion on firing.
Create 90° (sharp) corners, instead use flowing curves or small radii where necessary. Sharp angles create stress points and potential cracks in the finished piece.
Create a design that is “top heavy”. Generally, it is better to keep the mass of the product at the base of the design.
Have large, flat surfaces as they will often distort in the kiln and lead to buckling, or damage to the piece.
The team at Wade are always happy to help and advise on any aspect of design and production in ceramics, so please don’t hesitate to get in touch!