search  current discussion  categories  kilns & firing - misc 

fireplace, hearth tile

updated sun 11 mar 01


Stephani Stephenson on sat 10 mar 01

RE: question on what kind of clay is suitable for a fireplace hearth.
What clay will withstand heat of fire?

Choose a clay with a good amount of grog. Look for clay with
shrinkage rated at 7%-10%. Raku bodies, sculpture bodies, handbuilding
bodies may be suitable. This will help the tile withstand changes in
temperature without cracking. The grog doesn't have to be massive in
size, like the most rugged raku or sculpture body out there. Usually a
mixture of different meshes makes for a well balanced, workable clay. A
durable,well fitting glaze generally finishes it off.
At Alchemie Studio we make tile that is about 1/2" thick. It is
thicker than typical commercial tile. Often times 6 X 6 inch field tile
will comprise the inner hearth and floor for the hearth .We fire to cone
04-02 and glaze to that temperature. This tile has been used
successfully in hearths for many years. No special process , material,
or method is used in the making or glazing of the hearth or fireplace
tile versus floor or wall tile. I would talk to an installation pro with
regards to installation.
These are just a few tips, from personal experience. I also am always
interested in hearing from those with technical or other info in this

Stephani Stephenon
Leucadia CA

Alchemie Ceramic Studio