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[:RU]How to produce ceramic tiles[:]

[:RU]Recently reviewed at photos from a trip to Spain in 2013, including the production of ceramic tiles. I decided that it is necessary in general to talk about the technology, and a photo with the modern enterprise without interest …

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The visit began with a factory showroom. As well, a very large room comfortably placed the entire range of the company. Key collection features in the interior … Such is Ikea, but about ceramics and without visitors — all of it is built only for the partners of the company.


Next visit to the offices. The Cabinet of the designers of the company. It’s very cute, do not skimp on hardware, narrow windows — a feature sunny Spain.


Chief designer talked a little bit about new collections. Initially, the global design trends appear in the fashion-industry, so the company is working directly with designers to produce tiles of current trends faster than the competition.


Then — just production. The entire plant is located in two buildings: the main shop and polishing workshop. The peculiarity of the company — line of tiles with a strong gloss.


The shop is so big that the workers ride around on bikes on it.


Ready-made ceramic mass (part of which is a trade secret) goes to press. It was born here and tiles.


And as soon as the first stage of quality control. The control is made after each significant transaction, because the later to be defective — the more it will cost for the manufacturer.


Thereafter, the workpiece fall into the dryer. Drying — it’s not burning, but dry preform is already possible to pick up and it is not deformed.


On both sides of the tile are chamfered.


Then the workpiece is rotated and the operation is repeated.


Starting point, making the blank tile itself — the application of enamel. The tile surface is washed, for every grain of sand spoil enameled plane, after which the tile is applied primer.


Conveyor runs under fountain enamel.


Again, dryer, and long after her «stage» to cool tiles.


The ends are cut off the excess enamel tiles.


After that tiles laid on racks that move on the territory of the automatic loader. Which, by the way, moving silently on electric and if you stand on the route of its movement — stop and start demanding food. Then you’re sure to oglyanёtes otprygnete and thinking that you are going to a cube with sides of 3 meters. The entire production is automated as much as possible. Prior to this stage on the assembly line is the only person generating sampling blanks after pressing. Intermediate storage on racks necessary because on the way preparations are divided: some will go directly to the firing and the background will be white tiles, and some go to the line of printing.


The printing press is located in a separate pavilion inside the shop. As I understand it is necessary to clean the air in the area of ​​printing. Technology — offset, color model — the standard CMYK + ready color.


Naturally proofs printed directly on the tile.


After printing the tile again goes to the shelves.


All because the drying before firing takes place directly on the racks, shelving with 2 floors rolled into a drying chamber.


After the camera racks are unloaded at Conver, who goes into the oven for baking. That’s a long building to the left — it is.


The furnace temperature is gradually growing in the beginning to 1200 degrees, then just as gently lowered. The output temperature of the tiles — like the dishes from the dishwasher.


Immediately three phases output control: geometric control.


Automatic control of the surface quality.


And the post of manual control surface. On it the defects found are marked marker and then directly on the tile, written comments. All this is necessary in order to understand at what stage of production formed the defect could fine-tune the process. Incidentally, this is the second person in the way of the tiles.


Next stage of packaging. Here tile waiting for the third and last person who is not directly involved in the operation of the machine, but watch out for the presence of consumables.


Here tile again divided into two streams: matte varieties are packed in cardboard boxes and sent to the warehouse of finished products, and future glossy — are pulled together in a pack.


And stacked on pallets.


Are automatically drawn into the film.


And also placed on the storage area next to the finished tiles. The company produces a variety of collections, tiles vary in size, pattern, gloss surface. Accordingly, changing the size requires replacement of molds and readjustment of the press, the change in the pattern — a replacement roller printing machine and its calibration … So at the beginning of the year is made up of production and the collections are not released at the same time, and in turn, stored in the open air (climate permitting) and dealers are shipped upon receipt of orders.


Polishing plant — much smaller room.


Tile is unloaded from the pallet to the line, of course, takes the input control.


Washes and goes to the polishing machine, where it is processed abrasive heads of different factions. Every room in the circle on top — this is the stage of polishing.


So look for yourself head. Each stone at them costs a few hundred euros.


At the output we get the tile with a «glass» gloss, which can not be achieved by any other Spanish factories.


Then again drying, automatic output control and packaging.


Interestingly, the water in the polishing machines (polishing is carried out as «wet») is filtered, re-enters the case, and the pellet — added to the fresh clay and again goes into production.


It produces and finishing material, which is almost eternal, is varied texture, wear-resistant, and its design — a work of art.

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Author: Olga Pereko[:]

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