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Walnut Picture Frame for Charity

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Project by scoobydooo9r posted 03-20-2014 06:57 AM 1202 views 5 times favorited 11 comments Add to Favorites Watch

A couple weeks ago, my wife told me that she was going to donate one of her wall art photography prints to help raise money for charity in a silent auction. I was waiting for her to ask if I would build a frame for it, but it never came…. until she went to a frame shop to get it frame and they told her it was going to cost $150-$200… then she “remembered” that I could probably do it! LOL

So, I took it on and here is what I built:

It’s a walnut frame with a cove profile on the front. I used the table saw to cut the coves into the pieces using the cove jig I made a while back for another picture frame I built. I really like doing it this way, and it’s fairly easy to set up. I usually sight down the jig with a workpiece behind it to set it up. It usually takes a couple tries to get it dialed in, but it’s pretty fast. I just use some MDF or ply that is the same dimensions as the workpieces, and this time it took about 5 tries to get it dialed in where I wanted it. I know there are ways to do the setup mathematically, but I’m pretty sure that the test and try method works faster for me.

Although I am not particularly a huge fan of making picture frames, I do LOVE the fact that it allows me to pull out my shooing board to get that 45 degree angle dialed in! Those are the best inventions ever, and someone should really buy the guy who thought it up a beer!

I reinforced the miters with purpleheart splines (whatever they’re called) to ensure that the frame stays together for life. I use another jig that I made for the table saw for those. It’s a simple shoe that slips over my fence with a 90 cradle that you put the frame into to cut the slots.

The finish was supposed to be a simple oil/varnish blend (equal parts tung oil, Arm-R-Seal, and mineral spirits), but for some reason I was having curing issues on this one. After 3 coats of the blend, it was still sticky after letting it sit overnight after each coat. So, there was only one thing left to do… whip out a can of shellac and be done with it! The finish turned out great after a couple light coats of shellac.

The front “glass” is actually acrylic, which I was really skeptical about the first time I used it in another pic frame. It turned out perfect though, and I have been using acrylic ever since. I also did all the matting myself and used a 1/8” piece of masonite for the backer board. All in all, the project turned out nice, and it was even better when we mounted my wife, Gretchen’s photography in it. Isn’t she talented!!

If you would like to check out more of her work, her portrait photography website has lots of “people pictures”, and her Etsy shop all of her wall art in it. Check her out, she’ll love you for it.

I can’t wait to see what our teamwork will do for raising funds for the charity. I’ll post an update on how much it went for at action.

-- I don't make mistakes, I make design challenges!





11 comments so far

View Monte Pittman's profile

Monte Pittman

15182 posts in 1063 days


#1 posted 03-20-2014 10:07 AM

Awesome job. You did justice to it. Thanks for showing the build.

-- Mother Nature created it, I just assemble it.

View jumbojack's profile

jumbojack

1203 posts in 1349 days


#2 posted 03-20-2014 01:55 PM

I have not used much walnut, but today have seen three or four projects using walnut. As I live in one of the walnut capitals of the world, I am going to have to get on ‘board’. Your frame and wife’s photograph should turn a pretty penny at the charity event. VERY nice work both of you! Thanks for posting.

-- Made in America, with American made tools....Shopsmith

View garbonsai's profile

garbonsai

135 posts in 680 days


#3 posted 03-20-2014 04:21 PM

It took me a minute or two to figure out how your table saw jig for doing the cove works… Did that come from plans you found somewhere, or is it something you came up with on your own? I didn’t see it listed under your Projects, so I figured I’d ask before I started Googling….

-- Do not taunt Happy Fun Ball.

View scoobydooo9r's profile

scoobydooo9r

171 posts in 2500 days


#4 posted 03-21-2014 06:34 AM

Thanks Monte, this one went really smooth and I have to admit I had a great time making it.

-- I don't make mistakes, I make design challenges!

View scoobydooo9r's profile

scoobydooo9r

171 posts in 2500 days


#5 posted 03-21-2014 06:39 AM

Thanks jumbojack. I think you’ll enjoy walnut… works well and it always seems to look fantastic when you’re done with it. I checked out your profile and saw you have a Shopsmith, me too (well it’s my dad’s, but he lets me use it). I mainly use it as a lathe. It’s a neat little machine. Has it’s limitations, but man it can do a lot! Is yours a newer one or older?

-- I don't make mistakes, I make design challenges!

View scoobydooo9r's profile

scoobydooo9r

171 posts in 2500 days


#6 posted 03-21-2014 06:55 AM

Hey garbonsai, I am pretty sure that I got the design idea from The Wood Whisperer, Marc Spagnuolo. Here’s a link to his video about it on his website:” http://www.thewoodwhisperer.com/videos/coves-on-the-tablesaw-the-parallelogram-cove-jig/":http://www.thewoodwhisperer.com/videos/coves-on-the-tablesaw-the-parallelogram-cove-jig/ As usual, he covers it quite well.

It’s super easy to build it yourself or you can buy one at Rockler. I just looked it up and I think it’s actually on sale right now. Here’s the link to it: http://www.rockler.com/cove-cutting-table-saw-jig

Marc does a great job of explaining how to use it and how to make one. Even if you are definitely going to build instead of buy, you may want to take a look at some of the features that the Rockler one has and compare it to the one Marc builds. I think it may have a couple great additions that you could design into your build pretty easy. If I can help out at all, just let me know. I’ve used mine a handful of times, and it’s super easy.

The one important thing is to take very small passes since the table saw isn’t really meant to have lateral pressure on the blade. It will give you better results too.

You’ll have to clean up the cove afterwards, the wood is left with a surface that I would say is similar to what you get when using a bandsaw. If you have a gooseneck (or other round) card scraper, you can scrape it smooth pretty quickly, and that should get you out of having to sand most of it. When sanding, try to find something cylindrical to wrap the sandpaper around (I use a drum from my oscillating spindle sander). It makes the surface more even after sanding it.

-- I don't make mistakes, I make design challenges!

View garbonsai's profile

garbonsai

135 posts in 680 days


#7 posted 03-21-2014 01:20 PM

@scoobydooo9r: Thanks so much for the detailed reply. The Rockler one does have a couple of neat additions, but yours/Marc’s looks as though the two sides will always remain in parallel, which seems pretty important too. Something tells me I’ll end up with a combination of the two. I bookmarked both links, and I’m going to put this jig in the queue right after the two I have in progress (crosscut sleds and drill press table) and the one I haven’t started yet (combination spline and dovetail key jig). Thanks again!

-- Do not taunt Happy Fun Ball.

View scoobydooo9r's profile

scoobydooo9r

171 posts in 2500 days


#8 posted 03-22-2014 08:49 AM

No problem garbonsai, let me know if you have any questions about mine. I can shoot a quick video of it and post it if you want a better look at mine and how I use it. Actually, I probably will anyway so I’ll let you know when I get it done.

I really like that cove jig because it was super easy to make, not very fussy to build and use, and it really opens up a ton of possibility for profiles. It would cost a fortune to buy every router bit profile that you can make with it!

Don’t forget to post pictures when you build yours, I want to see what you do with yours (might have to upgrade my own!)

Cheers

-- I don't make mistakes, I make design challenges!

View dnick's profile

dnick

937 posts in 1107 days


#9 posted 03-23-2014 03:26 AM

Very nice frame. Well done.

-- dnick, North Hollywood, Ca.

View scoobydooo9r's profile

scoobydooo9r

171 posts in 2500 days


#10 posted 03-23-2014 05:38 AM

Thanks dnick, still waiting to see how it goes over at the auction. I’ll post updates when I get word.

-- I don't make mistakes, I make design challenges!

View mcoyfrog's profile

mcoyfrog

3371 posts in 2319 days


#11 posted 04-21-2014 07:03 PM

Sweet, I dig the splines

-- Wood and Glass they kick (well you know) Have a great day - Dug

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