How to Make Mosaics – Is Hardboard a Proper Foundation For Mosaics?

Hardboard would make a great foundation for your mosaics as prolonged as you restrict the size of the over-all mosaic, restrict the tesserae size, and never screen the mosaic in a damp surroundings. Keep away from hardboard for outdoor apps simply because of the opportunity for deterioration. Assuming your tesserae are the measurement of a quarter or a lot less and the overall size of your mosaic is considerably less than 24″x24″, I have discovered that 1/8-inch thick hardboard supplies an sufficient basis. If your tesserae are little, it can be shocking how versatile the mosaic is, even with grout, which indicates it can stand up to some warping prior to the grout cracks or glass pieces pop off. If your tesserae are big or if you include huge items of stained glass into your mosaic, the thickness of your foundation have to be greater simply because the mosaic cannot stand up to as a great deal warping (i.e., the thicker the wooden, the more resistant to warping). For instance, suppose your mosaic is 24″x24″ and you use a single piece of yellow stained glass to symbolize the brilliant sunshine lights up the entire world. Suppose the sun’s diameter is 10 inches, which tends to make up a fantastic chunk of the mosaic. It truly is straightforward to see how a small warping can pressure that one piece of glass producing failure (i.e., breaking, popping off). It’s like ceramic tile on a concrete-slab foundation. As the concrete cracks and moves, pressure is applied to the ceramic tile and, if the worry is wonderful adequate, the tile breaks. Therefore, you will have to contemplate the tesserae dimension when picking out the thickness of your mosaic’s basis.

About the decades generating lots of wall mosaics that are 24″x24″ or a lot less, I have identified that my favored basis is 1/8-inch hardboard. It really is the darkish-brown stuff that pegboard is built from but without having the holes. It is really slippery sleek on a person facet and tough on the other. I use this content only for dry, indoor, wall mosaics that will not be exposed to moisture. I use this product since it can be: 1) Rather thin, 2) Fairly lightweight, and 3) Tough on a person facet so the glue grabs maintain of it nicely.

The 1/8-inch thickness permits the concluded mosaic to in shape in a standard pre-made frame. My glass tesserae are about 1/8-inch thick, so the complete thickness of the completed mosaic is only about 1/4-inch. This makes it possible for me to obtain a ready-built body for virtually almost nothing. I strategy my indoor wall mosaics to be 16″x24″, 18″x24″, or 24″x24″, which are typical sizes for pre-built frames. If I were being to use 3/4-inch plywood or MDF as the basis, I would then have to use a tailor made body with more than enough depth to cover the full thickness of the mosaic (i.e., 3/4-inch wood basis plus 1/8-inch tesserae equals almost a 1-inch thickness). Tailor made frames charge up to five situations far more than conventional pre-produced frames. For illustration, by getting gain of their biweekly 50% sale at my favored hobby shop, I can get a pre-created 18″x24″ frame in a charming design and coloration that ideal fits the mosaic, have the mosaic put in in the body, have the hanging wire put in, and have paper backing set up, all for a lot less than $25. Which is ideal! Considerably less than 25 bucks. A tailor made-built body may well value as significantly as $150.

Not only do I help you save on framing costs, the hardboard is cheap as opposed to 3/4-inch plywood and MDF. I purchase a pre-slash segment of hardboard in its place of a whole 4’x’8 sheet. The pre-slash segment is 24″x48″. Figuring out the peak of my indoor wall mosaics is commonly 24″ (which is the width of the pre-slice section), this enables me to minimize the hardboard giving me a 16″, 18″, or 24″ width for my mosaic foundation. For case in point, suppose I want my mosaic to be 18″x24″. The pre-lower width of the hardboard I invest in is 24″. I evaluate and lower 18″, which outcomes in a piece of hardboard which is 18″x24″. The piece matches beautifully in a regular 18″x24″ pre-manufactured frame. I evaluate and slice the hardboard utilizing a typical round noticed and a “rip fence” that I make by clamping a 3-foot amount to the hardboard with two C-clamps. The rip fence allows me to push the noticed alongside the straight edge of the level to be certain a straight and accurate reduce.

I get ready the hardboard basis by painting it with two coats of white primer. The most important rationale for painting it white is to get a white track record onto which the glass tesserae will be adhered (Take note: I always adhere the glass to the rough facet of the hardboard). Though I usually use opaque glass, the white qualifications helps brighten it up. The dark-brown color of the hardboard will make the glass pieces seem dull and dim, even while the glass is supposed to be opaque. The secondary reward of portray the hardboard with primer is that it seals it. I you should not know if sealing hardboard does anything, but it tends to make me really feel far better believing it can be sealed. I never know the materials or chemical houses of hardboard and how it really is manufactured, so I really don’t know if it wants to be sealed, but painting it offers me a nice, warm-and-fuzzy emotion. I have a pattern of sealing all the things no matter if it wants it or not.

Just after making use of the tesserae and grout, you may be amazed at how versatile the mosaic is without the need of producing glass or grout failure (assuming your tesserae are fairly little). When I first applied 1/8-inch hardboard as the basis for a mosaic, I experimented and identified that I could bend the mosaic a total two inches with no impacting the glass and grout. I was much too scared to bend it a lot more than two inches! Right after the experiment, I assumed if the mosaic can bend a whopping two inches, then it can endure any warping that may arise. Then, just after the mosaic was installed in the pre-built frame, I understood that the mosaic was mounted in these a fashion to inhibit any warping at all. The mosaic was pressed and held in-place with the tiny fasteners in the back again of the frame to keep it from falling out. The only way the mosaic can warp is if it truly is potent plenty of to result in the frame to warp with it. I’ve in no way experienced a difficulty with any indoor wall mosaic warping when working with 1/8-inch hardboard put in in a conventional pre-designed body.

1/8-inch hardboard is also lightweight more than enough so the body weight of the all round mosaic just isn’t so heavy that you have to transform your household to make a assistance structure stout adequate to keep the weight of a mosaic. Typically, my 24″x24″ (or fewer) mosaics are light-weight sufficient to adequately hang by implies of a photograph hook and nail mounted in drywall. I you should not have to reduce into the drywall to set up 2″x4″ parts involving the studs and then change the drywall. This is exceptionally advantageous, in particular when selling or supplying absent the mosaic (i.e., you will not likely get rid of buyers that you may well or else lose if you tell them they have to hang the mosaic by doing a little something much more than pounding a nail into wall).