Indirect Method

tobytubMay 5, 2011

Can anyone clearly

explain how the traditional indirect way of making mosaics works. All I have found on google is confusing.

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Indirect method � lay tesserae upside down in a mold that you have coated with Vaseline or mold release, and gently pour cement, as for a stepping stone. Pour gently enough that the tess are not disturbed. The indirect method is usually used when a smooth surface is required, or when mosaics are made in a studio and then transported elsewhere for installation. The tesserae MUST lie flat so that the cement does not creep under it. Turn over and allow the mosaic to release and fall out of the mold after the proper setup time (read directions on whatever type of concrete you are using). Example, Diamondcrete sets up in about one hour.

If you have a pattern you wish to follow, here's what you do. First coat the mold. Cut a piece of paper to exactly fit in the bottom of your mold. Draw the design on the paper. Then, holding the paper up to a window, trace the design on the back side of the paper. Lay the paper design in the mold, reverse side up. Cut a piece of clear Contact paper the exact size of the bottom of the mold. Lay the Contact paper in the mold, sticky side up. Mosaic the pattern, pressing your tess firmly against the Contact paper. Then gently pour the concrete, Diamondcrete, or whatever you are using.

I hope this isn't too confusing. I will check back to see if you have questions, plus there are others that visit this board that know more about this method than I do.

    Bookmark   May 6, 2011 at 8:23PM
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I have found useful information on the following web page.

Here is a link that might be useful: Direct and Indirect Method

    Bookmark   May 6, 2011 at 9:38PM
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You dont have to use cement on the back, although that is one way. Indirect simply means your mosaic is made upside down, usually on paper, and then, using the paper put in place as a whole unit into a bed of adhesive. As mentioned above it is used when the surface is needed to be totally level. Suc a method is used for say a table top, backsplash, or something like that. Te mosaic my be pregrouted from the back, set into the adhesive, and then grouted from the from the front after it sets which keeps any adhesive from seeping thru to the front. Its important to use a water based glue so the paper may be gently soaked off after setting.

    Bookmark   May 7, 2011 at 10:39AM
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Thanks for the feedback to all.

    Bookmark   May 13, 2011 at 11:18PM
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I see there is also a "double indirect method" described on the webpage, which seems to have more advantages.

    Bookmark   June 11, 2011 at 4:40AM
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I believe that is mainly for large scale professional work

    Bookmark   October 2, 2012 at 4:52PM
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Hi I think I have used the double indirect method. Lay clear contact paper over a pattern if you are following one. Then lay your tess. I think this works best with glass. Then when your pattern is done you take wide scotch tape. Packing tape clear and tape over the top of your glass and press it well. If it is a really large instillation then I suggest cutting it down ,between the pieces of glass,as a large piece gets pretty hard to handle.

Then turn the whole piece over and gently peel the contact paper off. Back butter your glass trying not to use too much silicone or glue of choice depending on how or where you are installing. Too much glue fills the grout lines and will need to be picked out. UGH Then lift the piece and press into place.

I use this tape method often with out the contact paper when I have fit many small pieces together and do not want to have to move and glue them one at a time. They never seem to go back exactly as the first time. LOL

    Bookmark   October 2, 2012 at 9:34PM
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I tried it once early on and had some trouble. I used paper and the paper didn't hold it's shape as well as I would have liked. It kind of stretched during the process. So, it didn't fit the table exactly. Pretty disappointing actually! I'd try something different if I choose to do this method again.

    Bookmark   October 3, 2012 at 12:32PM
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