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Welcome to Smile by Design Dental Studios - Porcelain Veneer Systems
Here dentists can learn about the various veneer fabrication techniques and systems including

  • pressed ceramics
  • refractory model method
  • platinum foil technique
  • CAD-CAM milled veneers
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Smile by Design Dental Studios
Pressed - Refractory - Platinum Foil - CAD/CAM
Pressed Ceramic Porcelain Veneers

porcelain veneer pressed ceramicsPressed Ceramic Veneers - time tested for over 15 years
Pressed ceramics were introduced to North America in the early 90's and are a popular method of creating porcelain veneers. The veneer design is created in wax and the lost wax technique is used to create the restoration. The Pressing Procedure - A homogeneous ceramic ingot is heated and then forced under pressure into a wax formed void. The process eliminates porcelain shrinkage, porosity and inconsistencies that may be present with brush build-up techniques. There are currently several types of ceramics used in the press technique, including leucite reinforced porcelain and lithium disilicate.

  • Process - the original design is created on the working model in wax, an ideal design material.
  • Strength - there is a wide variety of pressable ceramics available, including high strength leucite porcelain = 160 MPa / pressed lithium disilicate = 400 MPA
  • Fit - Excellent, due to the hot press technique and homogeneous porcelain base.
  • Esthetics - Pressed porcelains are generally monochromatic but the cutback technique allows for the esthetic application of finish porcelains (feldspar). Very thin pressed veneers, .3 mm are possible by rely on staining for esthetics.
  • Lab Materials /Equipment - Many laboratories use a press ceramic 'system' routinely. Systems include, shaded pressable ingots of a variety of ceramics and finishing (layering) porcelains.
  • Adhesion method: Veneers must be bonded.

Refractory Model Porcelain Veneers
Refractory Model Veneers - an original layering method (feldspathic porcelain)
The refractory model method of veneer fabrication was one of the original methods, often provided with an entire fabrication system. The master model is duplicated in refractory material (stone). The model supports the porcelain during multiple firings. Porcelain is skillfully applied with traditional layered brush buildup techniques. The refractory model is usually removed by air blasting methods. Finally, any porcelain tags that remain are removed and minor roughened surfaces are finely polished. Skilled ceramists can create very life-like restorations with internal shading and staining techniques.
  • Process - a traditional veneering method that been in use for over 25 years.
  • Strength - There is no exceptional strength in feldspathic layering porcelains.
  • Esthetics - excellent esthetics. Layering techniques build tooth shade and translucence into the porcelain, in layers.
  • Adhesion method: Traditional layering procelains gain fracture strength from the supporting tooth structure. Veneers must be bonded.
Platinum Foil Porcelain Veneers
porcelain veneer platinum foil veneerPlatinum Foil Veneers - a traditional support for feldspathic porcelain build-up
The platinum foil technique for fabricating crowns has been around since the early 1900's and has several fabrication advantages. It is quicker process than other methods. The ultra thin foil is applied to the master model and provides support for the layered build up of brushed on porcelain. Built up porcelains are supported by the foil during multiple firings. Ceramists can use the porcelains of their choice during build up. The thickness of the veneer can be checked during fabrication and if a veneer is damaged during fabrication it can be remade quickly, using the same master model.
  • Process - a traditional veneering method - not in common use today.
  • In the laboratory, the technique is straightforward, fast and forgiving.
  • Esthetics - can be excellent, as traditional layered build-up methods are used.
  • Tooth Prep - best when margins are clear and well defined
  • Adhesion method: Traditional layering procelains gain fracture strength from the supporting tooth structure. Veneers must be bonded.
CAD/CAM Porcelain Veneers

porcelain veneer cad/cam veneersCAD/CAM Veneers - a recent innovation for exceptional stength and conventional cementation
A recent innovation is the design and manufacture of all-ceramic materials aided by computers. A 3D model is created with a photographic or laser scan of the mouth, impression or poured model. Special computer software is used to create what is called a 3D computer model of the involved teeth and the completed ceramic restoration design. Guided by the original computer design, veneers can be milled out of various materials. Milled materials may vary from standard ceramics to super-strong zirconia (rare). Finishing porcelains (feldspathic) and complete the restoration and allow for surface characterization, staining, translucence and other creative nuances.
This type of restoration is used in rare situations when superior strength is the main goal.

3D virtual model & veneer designmilled ceramics - veneer and crownsmilled veneers
before & after staining
  • Process - this is not a common method of making veneers, but growing with the use of CAD/CAM in dentistry. 
  • Design - CAD creates a virtual 3D design, before fabrication (milling) begins.
  • Milled materials (blanks} are monochromatic but available in various porcelains, strengths, opacity and shades.
  • Traditional veneering porcelain build-up and staining is applied for vitality, characterization and esthetics.
  • Strength - flexure strength of 400 MPa, is a feature of this process, depending on the characteristics of the milled ceramic.
  • Tooth Preparation - moderate to aggressive preparation with a well defined margin, retraction for impression.
  • Adhesion method: Veneers must be bonded.