Hardboard tends to make a superior foundation for your mosaics as lengthy as you limit the sizing of the overall mosaic, limit the tesserae sizing, and do not display screen the mosaic in a wet atmosphere. Prevent hardboard for out of doors apps simply because of the probable for deterioration. Assuming your tesserae are the sizing of a quarter or considerably less and the overall sizing of your mosaic is considerably less than 24″x24″, I have discovered that one/8-inch thick hardboard presents an enough foundation. If your tesserae are compact, it’s astonishing how adaptable the mosaic is, even with grout, which signifies it can endure some warping prior to the grout cracks or glass items pop off. If your tesserae are big or if you integrate substantial items of stained glass into your mosaic, the thickness of your foundation ought to be increased simply because the mosaic are unable to endure as significantly warping (i.e., the thicker the wood, the far more resistant to warping). For case in point, suppose your mosaic is 24″x24″ and you use a solitary piece of yellow stained glass to represent the bright solar lights up the globe. Suppose the sun’s diameter is ten inches, which tends to make up a superior chunk of the mosaic. It is really effortless to see how a tiny warping can strain that solitary piece of glass leading to failure (i.e., breaking, popping off). It is really like ceramic tile on a concrete-slab foundation. As the concrete cracks and moves, strain is utilized to the ceramic tile and, if the strain is good plenty of, the tile breaks. Therefore, you ought to take into consideration the tesserae sizing when deciding on the thickness of your mosaic’s foundation.
Around the years creating several wall mosaics that are 24″x24″ or considerably less, I have discovered that my favourite foundation is one/8-inch hardboard. It is really the dark-brown stuff that pegboard is produced from but devoid of the holes. It is really slippery easy on one facet and rough on the other. I use this substance only for dry, indoor, wall mosaics that will not be exposed to dampness. I use this substance simply because it’s: one) Rather slender, 2) Rather light-weight, and three) Rough on one facet so the glue grabs keep of it very well.
The one/8-inch thickness will allow the finished mosaic to in shape in a standard pre-produced frame. My glass tesserae are about one/8-inch thick, so the whole thickness of the finished mosaic is only about one/4-inch. This will allow me to purchase a prepared-produced frame for nearly absolutely nothing. I system my indoor wall mosaics to be sixteen”x24″, 18″x24″, or 24″x24″, which are widespread sizes for pre-produced frames. If I were being to use three/4-inch plywood or MDF as the foundation, I would then have to use a custom made frame with plenty of depth to deal with the complete thickness of the mosaic (i.e., three/4-inch wood foundation furthermore one/8-inch tesserae equals nearly a one-inch thickness). Custom made frames expense up to 5 periods far more than standard pre-produced frames. For case in point, by getting benefit of their biweekly 50% sale at my favourite hobby shop, I can get a pre-produced 18″x24″ frame in a lovely design and shade that most effective satisfies the mosaic, have the mosaic installed in the frame, have the hanging wire installed, and have paper backing installed, all for considerably less than $twenty five. That’s appropriate! Much less than twenty five bucks. A custom made-produced frame might expense as significantly as $a hundred and fifty.
Not only do I help you save on framing charges, the hardboard is low-cost when compared to three/4-inch plywood and MDF. I purchase a pre-lower part of hardboard as an alternative of a whole 4’x’8 sheet. The pre-lower part is 24″x48″. Figuring out the peak of my indoor wall mosaics is generally 24″ (which is the width of the pre-lower part), this will allow me to lower the hardboard giving me a sixteen”, 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 purchase is 24″. I measure and lower 18″, which results in a piece of hardboard that’s 18″x24″. The piece suits beautifully in a standard 18″x24″ pre-produced frame. I measure and lower the hardboard working with a standard round saw and a “rip fence” that I make by clamping a three-foot degree to the hardboard with two C-clamps. The rip fence will allow me to thrust the saw alongside the straight edge of the degree to make certain a straight and correct lower.
I put together the hardboard foundation by portray it with two coats of white primer. The major purpose for portray it white is to get a white qualifications onto which the glass tesserae will be adhered (Be aware: I often adhere the glass to the rough facet of the hardboard). Though I normally use opaque glass, the white qualifications helps brighten it up. The dark-brown shade of the hardboard tends to make the glass items show up uninteresting and dark, even nevertheless the glass is intended to be opaque. The secondary reward of portray the hardboard with primer is that it seals it. I do not know if sealing hardboard does just about anything, but it tends to make me sense far better believing it’s sealed. I do not know the substance or chemical attributes of hardboard and how it’s produced, so I do not know if it requires to be sealed, but portray it offers me a awesome, warm-and-fuzzy feeling. I have a practice of sealing every thing irrespective of whether it requires it or not.
Following making use of the tesserae and grout, you can be surprised at how adaptable the mosaic is devoid of leading to glass or grout failure (assuming your tesserae are rather compact). When I very first applied one/8-inch hardboard as the foundation for a mosaic, I experimented and discovered that I could bend the mosaic a whole two inches devoid of influencing the glass and grout. I was much too scared to bend it far more than two inches! Following the experiment, I assumed if the mosaic can bend a whopping two inches, then it can survive any warping that might arise. Then, right after the mosaic was installed in the pre-produced frame, I understood that the mosaic was installed in these types of a manner to inhibit any warping at all. The mosaic was pressed and held in-location with the tiny fasteners in the back again of the frame to preserve it from falling out. The only way the mosaic can warp is if it’s potent plenty of to result in the frame to warp with it. I’ve in no way had a issue with any indoor wall mosaic warping when working with one/8-inch hardboard installed in a standard pre-produced frame.
one/8-inch hardboard is also light-weight plenty of so the body weight of the overall mosaic isn’t so weighty that you have to remodel your residence to generate a guidance construction stout plenty of to keep the body weight of a mosaic. Frequently, my 24″x24″ (or considerably less) mosaics are light-weight plenty of to sufficiently dangle by signifies of a photograph hook and nail installed in drywall. I do not have to lower into the drywall to install 2″x4″ items concerning the studs and then substitute the drywall. This is really advantageous, especially when offering or giving away the mosaic (i.e., you will never get rid of buyers that you might or else get rid of if you explain to them they have to dangle the mosaic by carrying out one thing far more than pounding a nail into wall).