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Forum topic by giser3546 posted 05-24-2014 09:10 PM 840 views 0 times favorited 7 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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giser3546

179 posts in 936 days


05-24-2014 09:10 PM

An artist friend wants a frame for a 45” x 84” painting. I’ve done more frames than I cant count but never one that big. Any suggestions for making a sturdy frame that big?

-- "If you wait for it to rain, It will"


7 replies so far

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srzsrz

37 posts in 1331 days


#1 posted 05-26-2014 05:33 AM

I think the main problem would be with the frame racking, right? As in, it thinks it’s a linkage with four joints and therefore not necessarily a rectangle but rather a parallelogram?

If the painting is inserted tightly into the frame, the painting itself can provide the rigidity, but if you want to avoid that, I’d just use a backer of some sort. Here’s a possible way to do it:

In the image, you see a frame with a rabbet. The painting sits in the rabbet and is secured with wooden clips. The rabbet is deep enough that the painting does not stick out, so you can simply nail an MDF backer onto the frame (shown partially cut away in the picture).

Usually in situations like this you can get away with surprisingly flimsy sheet materials. Think of a standard mass market particleboard bookcase, like the IKEA Billy. You assemble the thing and it’s all wobbly, and then you nail on a sheet of friggin’ masonite on the back and suddenly you have a sturdy piece of furniture. It works because the force it has to counteract is directed in the only direction in which it’s strong, that is, along the surface, not at an angle to it.

That said, with something this enormous, your sheet goods are likely to buckle, and once it buckles, all the strength is gone. Rather than going up to a very thick and heavy type of backer, you may want to add some framing to the backer, like ribs on a piano soundboard:

Or have a thin material for the full backer and add triangles in the corners made of a thicker material. Intuitively, it seems like something like this should do the trick without incurring the weight of having a thick material all over, but I’m not sure my intuition on this stuff is all that great:

Just some ideas based on my intuition, YMMV, I haven’t actually built something like this ;-)

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Whiskers

389 posts in 1491 days


#2 posted 05-26-2014 06:04 AM

In my previous house, I framed a 4×8 sheet of pegboaard and hung it on the wall. I than hung a ton of tools on it with no problem. Of course it was secured to the wall studs. I don’t think anything that large should be hung with picture wire, period. Anyway, a sheet of that same material, without the peg holes is only about $8 around here, and it not that heavy. Canvas pictures have to have a fairly stout frame (canvas stretcher? per below) as it is cause the canvas is stretched. I would look at the picture and see if this is even a issue. If it is a canvas painting, than your worries should have already been addressed, your frame is just window dressing. If not than the framing of the canvas is what needs to be addressed. It needs some sort of internal bracing. The problem is hopefully non existent. If the picture is on like paperboard, like a paint by number set, than I would back it with some of that thin hardboard and use a french cleat to hang it. Actually, a French cleat is perfect with either type of painting in this case. You could even build it into the top of the frame if you use thicker wood.

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Whiskers

389 posts in 1491 days


#3 posted 05-26-2014 06:15 AM

Another thought I had. When my mother was in her art phase, if she did a paint by number type painting, the hardware was attached to the frame and the picture loosely secured inside it, but if it was on canvas, the hardware was attached to the framing of the canvas (canvas stretcher?), and the frame was loosely secured to that, and supplied nothing structural to the build. Of course she never did a 7’ paint by number set, never seen one of those. A lot of artist do use the same type material to paint pictures without using paint by numbers, my mother did. She did both canvas and paperboard, I’m only using the term “paint by numbers” as its a reference to a material everyone should have seen.

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CalgaryGeoff

937 posts in 1946 days


#4 posted 05-26-2014 06:27 AM

Is this a picture frame or canvass stretcher or maybe both you making ? Perfect timing for me, I need to learn this info too. I’m making some paintings now and need ideas for canvass stretchers. My plan was simple for stretchers, lap joints with glue and screws.

Hope you post the finished frame and the design you used.

Cheers

-- If you believe you can or can not do a thing, you are correct.

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Whiskers

389 posts in 1491 days


#5 posted 05-26-2014 06:32 AM

canvas stretcher, okay, now I know the tech term for what I was talking about in my above posts. I assume he is doing the frame, as the artist friend should have already dealt with the picture.

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Whiskers

389 posts in 1491 days


#6 posted 05-26-2014 06:53 AM

Calgary, I’ve never seen stretchers with screws in them. I’d use tongue and groove myself with glue and pins/brads. The issue with something 7’ is you would have to have some type of cross bracing. Simple X structure with a lap in the center would work perfect here. I would definitely affix the X to the top and bottom of the structure rather than the sides though, cause odds are all the weight will go on the top piece, and that is where you need the support and anti rack. Maybe screws and glue to affix the X to the top and bottom corners.

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giser3546

179 posts in 936 days


#7 posted 05-27-2014 08:06 PM

Thanks guys, right now I’m waiting to get more info from the artist, about how its hung and other specifics.

-- "If you wait for it to rain, It will"

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