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  • #16
    Re: Making picture frames

    Matrix, here's a photo of a few I've made. You can see the splines in 1 and the Miller dowels in another. The maple frame is just glued. Hope this helps...
    Attached Files
    If at first you don't succeed, try reading the owners manual.

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    • #17
      Re: Making picture frames

      Matrix
      You mention the poplar and oak from the HD and Lowes. I've used a lot of the same lumber for tables and chairs. It usually takes me 2 or three trips to find just the right boards, because they never seem to have enough straight, square and unblemished pieces the first time around. I have used my table mounted router for edge jointing and was very pleased with the fit. Just my 2 cents
      See ya when the sawdust clears...
      Hector

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      • #18
        Re: Making picture frames

        The size of the frame and what you are framing will dictate the joinery method. V-nails work great for narrow frames for photos or lighter art. If you're going to frame a mirror or put a large picture behind glass I would use glue with biscuits installed perpendicular to the miter joint. For some frames you could even use pocket screws. I try to use pocket screws where possible.

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        • #19
          Re: Making picture frames

          I just finished making a picture frame for a world series newspaper (attached picture), and I also waited until the frame was assembled to rout the edges and the rabbet for the glass. This way, everything will line up perfectly after the frame has been glued up. I also use splines when I make the frame. Having a planer is a big plus when making the splines the correct thickness. I've made them with and without the thickness planer, and i will use the thickness planer from now on. I've also used pocket holes to for the corners, and i find it hard to set them up. I think it's easier to use a jig for the table saw then use the screws, and I think the splines look better. I'm of the philosophy that you should use the easiest joinery that will suffice for the joinery. So it depends on the size of the frame and the weight it will be holding as to what joinery you use. Simply gluing the 45's may work just fine if the frame is small enough. I hope I haven't confused you anymore then you already were, but you'll learn whats best for you with experience. Trial and error can be the best teacher.
          Attached Files

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          • #20
            Re: Making picture frames

            Here's a Craftsman style frame I made for my parent's house. It's got mortise and tenon corners as well as square tenon pegs with only clear poly finish. The rest is a light cherry stain finish, to match an armoire they have, and three coats of poly.

            The wood for this frame came from two separate pieces of oak reclaimed from our house. The top and bottom pieces are cut from one piece (you can see the grain lines); the sides are both cut from another pieces. It will soon house a canvas painting my mom picked up somewhere that has a crappy-crapola fugly frame.

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            Attached Files

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            • #21
              Re: Making picture frames

              You've gotten some great feedback on the cutting and joining of the 45 degree corners. I'll go back to a couple of your original questions on the need for thickness planer and/or jointer.

              Obviously, if you're going to be making your own profiles you need a router and table. Where the planer/jointer comes in is these tools give you the opportunity to make the edge that's going to be routed perfectly flat and straight. Although you can run wood that is slightly warped or twisted through the router by applying the pressure in the right places and using due diligence, it is amazing how even very slight variations in the distance from the bit can be visible, especially with small profiles that leave a "lip". The straighter and flatter you can get the wood to be, the more consistent and less "work" it will be.

              When I first got into woodworking, I built an entire set of kitchen cabinet doors using a reverseable set of router rail & stile bits and stock pieces of oak from the home center. They didn't turn out too badly, but I do remember having to do a fair amount of sanding because some of the coped joints just didn't come together flat. I just figured that was the way it goes, but later realized that even the slightest bow in the wood was causing very slight changes in the distance to the router bit. By checking the bow before I routed, I found I could control the effect somewhat by applying more pressure at certain places to attempt to keep the distance to the bit consistent.

              Once I got a jointer and planer and started running "everything" through them before getting to the router, I found I didn't have to work nearly as hard. I could actually setup the proper table and fence featherboards and just push the all wood through. I could even start picking the "best" edge to route based on desirable grain direction and pattern, rather than which way the "cup" was. I'm not saying that you can't get by without a jointer and planer. In fact, I think one of the reasons I can really appreciate what these tools do is because of all the work I used to did without them.

              Jim

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