Overview: Ceramic decals are made using inorganic decorating enamels, similar to those used for "glass-firing" decals, but are suitable for use on ceramics only because of the higher temperatures required for firing. The raw materials used to make the ceramic decal colors are designed to achieve their proper color, adhesion, durability, and gloss, at temperatures typically in the 1375-1475 degree Fahrenheit range, safe for ceramics, but hot enough to distort or melt glass. Actual firing temperatures can vary, depending upon numerous factors, such as the type of oven used (kiln or lehr), the length of time the ware is allowed to "soak" at the peak temperature, and the firing schedule.
Firing: While many times it is possible to use lower firing temperature "glass" decals on some ceramic pieces, the higher firing ceramic decals often exhibit greater long-term durability for detergent and chemical resistance. On certain substrates, such as porcelain, the ceramic colors are markedly better than glass colors, due to their thermal expansion characteristics. One major disadvantage of ceramic colors is the need to have equipment capable of reaching the high temperatures necessary to properly fire them. NOTE - We feel it is a very good practice to always test fire a few pieces of any decal on the ceramic substrate you will be using, before applying and firing the decals on the entire job.
Colors: There are a wide variety of colors available for ceramic decal decorations, including metallic Gold, Silver, and Copper. However, due to the nature of the inorganic compounds used to make up the ceramic colors, there are limitations to what is achievable. For questions regarding special or unusual color requests for decals, please contact us .
Overview: Glass decals are made using inorganic decorating enamels specifically designed to be fired at temperatures suitable for normal soda-lime glass. Due to the nature of the materials used in making the decals, most colors must be printed over a base coat of white glass enamel to provide the opacity and gloss most people prefer. This fact should be taken into consideration when artists develop the artwork to be used for decals that will be applied to glass substrates.
It should be noted that "glass-firing" decals are often applied to ceramic pieces and successfully fired at the same temperatures as one would for glass. For various reasons, this is not always possible, but glass decals may often work where the same exact design is to be used for both glass and ceramic pieces rather than having separate glass and ceramic decals made. One point to remember, not all glasses are the same. There are many different kinds of glass, such as lead-crystal, soda-lime, and borasilicate. Likewise, there are different kinds of ceramics available also, stoneware and porcelain for example. Because of these differences, always be sure to test fire a few pieces first to decide if the decals will be suitable for use on your particular ware.
Typically the firing temperatures for glass decals are in the 1050 - 1100 degrees Fahrenheit range. The actual temperature needed to properly fire the glass decal depends upon great many variables. Some but not all of these variables would include the length of time the glass is held at the peak firing temperature, the thickness of the glass, the composition of the glass, and the specific chemical makeup of the glass enamels being used.
NOTE: We feel it to be a very good practice to always test fire a few pieces of any decal, whether for use on glass or ceramic substrates, before applying and firing an entire production job.
Colors: There are a wide variety of colors available for glass decal decorations, including metallic Gold, Silver, and Copper. However, due to the nature of the inorganic compounds used to make up the glass colors, there are limitations to what colors are achievable and therefore we cannot guarantee exact color matches. If you have any questions regarding special or unusual color requests on decals, please contact us.
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