Drying Low-Shrinkage Steel XT

Low-Shrinkage Steel XT does most of its shrinking while it is drying, not so much during the firing process. This shrinkage can cause the steel to distort significantly while it’s drying. How do we prevent it? People have come up with all kinds of potential solutions, including air-drying, or drying under heavy objects. However, because of friction between the back of the piece and the drying surface, the flat piece may crack while trying to shrink (even if you oil the surface). This can happen even if you dry it very slowly or in the air. Placing a heavy object on top of it is likely to interfere with the shrinkage and cause cracking.

The best way to dry a flat square is to watch it and flip it over once it starts curving upwards. Then flip it again when it starts curving again. By flipping it each time it curves, you allow it to curve back in the opposite direction until it is flat, while also avoiding friction with the drying surface. The process is short and safe.

Here is a short video clip demonstrating the process:

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