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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Background blabble: So we've collected quite a few posters but never could afford to frame them. I started making a frame for a poster (under the one shown) and was going to do a tongue and groove and with the rough side. The other poster was dark and I'm a bit more drawn to seeing the clean wood grain (its heart pine I got out of the house from 1839). So because I messed up the cuts I cant do the clean side and got out one of our smaller posters (shown).

Question: any suggestion on how to make this? Should I leave it squared or route a profile on the inside or outsie edge...or both? leave the outside edge rough? I only have a few router bits (the onea that come with the smaller mlcs kit) and two whiteside edge beads. I'm planning to rip the width down to 2-2.25".its about 1 1/16" thick.

I'm not planning to stain it or anything but just finish with waterlox. Any other suggsstions?

I think I'm just going to mitre the corners this time. The poster is 16x25. I'm assuming just a glue up is stong enough to hold it all together or should I reinforce it in any way? I will have glass.

Thanks!
 

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If it were me I would lap the joints and after assembly route out the back side to insert the artwork and a backer board. I know nothing about posters. Hopefully they are near standard sizes so you can make the frames all alike so from time to time you could change the artwork without making new frames.
 

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For starters, a mitered joint will not be strong enough--no matter what kind of glue you use because it will have a relatively small surface area of glue and it will be end-grain to end-grain, so it will be a poor bond. Miter joints are common on frames, though, because they look balanced and appealing from the front. You need to reinforce the joint so that there can be edge-grain surface areas for the glue to work with. I like splines personally in the corners. Another way would be to have half-lap joints with a mitered top.

As for channeling the frame stock for the glass, poster, and backing materials to fit, this is a must. I like to just rip the channels in the frame sections before hand on the table saw. Two cuts are all that is needed on each piece and you end up with a long narrow stick of wood that can be nice for inlays or whatever else. If you hog out all of that material with a router, you will have a lot more saw dust/chips all over. If you do use a router, you can assemble the frame first and then route away. You'll have to use a chisel to square out the channel corners since they will be the same radius as the bit.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks for the feedback guys! I guess lap joints is the way to go. I wonder if it would look neat to do the lap joint and then put a peg through the face on each corner with some of the scrap. Not sure I could make a nice round peg though. I've never done a lap joint before so this will be interesting to try.

Still trying to decide if I should leave it flat and squared or put a bead profile on it. I guess that's just personal preference that I need to figure out, but i'm leaning toward just leaving it basic.

Steve the posters we have unfortunately are all different sizes, so we'll have a lot of frames to make.

Thanks for the link Phaedrus, and the suggestion on using the table saw to cut out the space for the glass. I usually go though router table way, but it might be nice to save some wood and not saw dust.
 

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I have about 60' of 1/2" square (-ish) maple strips from six frames that I have built this year. I am always finding uses for them!


Also, you can always add bead and other details once assembled. I would focus on cutting your joints to fit tight, flat, and square first. Keep it simple and build from there if you like.


Sent from my DROID RAZR MAXX using Woodworking Talk
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Update: So I got the miters cut and lap joints made...they're not pretty as on one corner I raised the blade a bit instead of lowering it a bit and had a nice little cavity in there. I glued in some little pieces to try and fill it as best I could. I might still throw some screws in the back for added strength. The picture is from before I cut the laps and glued up. Nice thing about old heart pine, it's got a lot of resin. Sanding up the corners filled in the little gaps nicely with some resin filled sawdust. On the down side, my sanding gave some bad sanding spots on the wood.

Question: Anyway, my question now is...what do y'all use for the backing? From smaller frames I've been able to find real this board but for something this size I'm at a loss. I was thinking 1/4" plywood, but is too heavy? Is there a better solution?
 

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+1 on using foam board. I checked at Michaels and the ones I saw listed there were 1/2" thick which may be a bit much. I've found it at Wally World in 20x30x3/16" which is about perfect thickness. Cuts easily with an Xacto or box cutter knife. Elmers also makes an acid free version if that's a concern. Just google "acid free foam board".:smile:
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 · (Edited)
Hey thanks guys! I looked on Michaels website and couldn't find anything but I think the 1/2" thickness would be a bit excessive. I found a lot of places online that carry the acid free stuff but you either have to order 25 boards or I found one place that sells custom sizes for one piece orders but shipping is $10. Looks like Walmart has the acid free boards in stock in my area. Thanks!
 

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I have made a lot of picture frames. All except one has just been mitered and glued. None has fallen apart yet. Now, if it were dropped, all bets are off. OP, for your poster frame, I'd use some biscuits.
Almost all of my stuff has been professionally put together. I bring the frame, and the art, and they do the rest. One thing I've learned is that unless you attach (glue) the art to the backer board, it will wrinkle. I was told this by the framer, and sure enough, the ones I did and didn't glue are wrinkled. So be aware. Also, I'd definitely go with acid free products. AND, do you know the framing places have anti-UV glass? Yes, it's more, (there are a couple grades), but worth it, IMHO. If it's worth going to the trouble framing, it's worth spending some money on excellent products.
Oh, and check out a mitre trimmer. Kind of expensive, but makes the joint disappear. I wouldn't make frames without it! Grizzly carries them, I have one, and it's been great.
 

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Yeah, you know, I have wondered about that, and haven't really gotten a good answer. Not sure if it's permanent or what. I will ask the question again.
 

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For starters, a mitered joint will not be strong enough--no matter what kind of glue you use because it will have a relatively small surface area of glue and it will be end-grain to end-grain, so it will be a poor bond. Miter joints are common on frames, though, because they look balanced and appealing from the front. You need to reinforce the joint so that there can be edge-grain surface areas for the glue to work with. I like splines personally in the corners. Another way would be to have half-lap joints with a mitered top.

As for channeling the frame stock for the glass, poster, and backing materials to fit, this is a must. I like to just rip the channels in the frame sections before hand on the table saw. Two cuts are all that is needed on each piece and you end up with a long narrow stick of wood that can be nice for inlays or whatever else. If you hog out all of that material with a router, you will have a lot more saw dust/chips all over. If you do use a router, you can assemble the frame first and then route away. You'll have to use a chisel to square out the channel corners since they will be the same radius as the bit.
How come millions (yes, I do mean millions) of picture frames around the world seem to hold up perfectly well with nothing more than mitered corner joints?

George
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Thanks for the feedback about the moisture concern. I hadn't thought about that. I talked with the person at Michaels for some advice and she said they would not glue the artwork to the foam board but that they may use some double sided tape or something like that. She did say you want to keep the piece of the glass so it doesn't stick and also to keep moisture from getting trapped, so they use some spacers around the edge, that's assuming there is no matting. If there is matting that will keep it off. The tape on the backside will keep the piece off the glass as well. They also use an aluminum type tape around the inner edge wrapped on to the back side of the frame. She said this keeps the frame off the edge of the poster and also helps keep the moisture out. I think that was the most of what she said. A lot more than what I had thought goes into framing.
 

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Hmmmm, the whole moisture thing sounds silly. I doubt you are ever going to really keep the moisture out. Assuming she means the humidity in the air, like in the summer. And never has my professional framing guy ever once mentioned anything about moisture. Seriously, go to a professional framing shop and ask them. And get a quote from both places. Was Michaels going to use anti-UV glass?
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Oh, I assumed the wrinkles you said might happen without gluing to the backer board would be caused by moisture. And I had read online that someone said trapping moisture was a concern as well. That's why I asked her about that. I just don't want the poster to wrinkle or end up sticking to the glass. But I think you're right, it's probably not as big an issue.

I actually bought the glass at lowes. The UV-blocking glass they had at Michaels was going to be $50. They also had a higher end type of glass which would have been more. They said they'd finish it up for about $25-30 but that the glass would be an added cost. So i'm going to try and do it all here.
 

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From what I understand, the wrinkling issue stems more from an unsecured/gravity type issue more than anything else. If not using anti-UV glass, make sure it stays out of direct sunlight, or it'll get bleached. Is the poster worth anything?
As far as the even better glass, it's called Museum Glass. Not only anti-UV, but also anti reflective to the point that you cannot see it. I don't believe I have ever used it, although I did one painting for myself that I wish I had used it on. It is quite pricey, though. The big factor is size. For smaller items, the better glass becomes much less of a cost issue.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Yeah, i guess the gravity issue makes sense. I just recalled i had put two of my jazz fest posters in very cheap frames i got at target years ago and I remember they did start getting wavy. Didn't take long before i through those frames out and wrapped the posters back up.

The print I'm framing now cost us about $50. Maybe the better glass is worth it since one thing we like about the print is all the vibrant colors. We usually keep our blinds closed though and the light that would come in if they were open would have to pass through some shades we have on the porch which block out 95% of UV so maybe it'll be alright.

Thanks again for the info! This is the second frame I've made and first for anything of this size. We have several more prints we'd like to frame though so it definitely wont be the last we do.
 

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How come millions (yes, I do mean millions) of picture frames around the world seem to hold up perfectly well with nothing more than mitered corner joints?

George
I'd wager that this is only half true. Yes, there are millions of frames with miter joints, but a miter joint has zero (yes, I do mean zero) mechanical strength. Most frames of this type have fasteners to add mechanical strength to the joint. There are various v-nails and other specialized fasteners that can be pressed into the joint to hold it in place (see: http://www.leevalley.com/US/wood/page.aspx?cat=1,43293&p=52289). You could glue a frame that is made with just miter joints. Using regular wood glue, it would be end-grain to end-grain and would fail immediately. Epoxy or CA may last longer, but will eventually fail as well--especially with larger frames like what would be needed for a poster where the contact area of the glue is relatively small compared to the long length and width of the outside.

As for fastening the poster to the backing material, I'd recommend staying away from spray adhesives. They can soak into the paper and cause wrinkles. It depends largely upon the stock that the poster is made from as to how much it will want to change with fluctuations in moisture. Dry mounting might be an option, but I have not used this myself.
 

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It will NOT fail immediately! As I said, I have made a bunch with no mechanical fasteners, and to date, not one failure! (1st one was made around '03 or so.) If dropped or otherwise mishandled, of course, yes, there will be a failure. But, if you dropped it, it would be damaged either way, most likely.
Now, I agree if you're saying it has no structural strength. Absolutely. But does it need to? Apparently not.
I did a test one time out of curiosity. I made a corner, and ripped it apart. It actually had really good strength just trying to pull it apart, but it's killer is shock. Dropping it 3' onto concrete did it in.
About 1/2 of these frames are also very hard, heavy, dense exotic woods. My miter trimmer tends to leave a very smooth shiny finish. No issue. And don't forget, as a general rule of thumb, the bigger the frame, the wider the sides, therefore increasing the surface area of the miter length.
 
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