Tuesday, March 5, 2024

Stretcher Bars


I made a set of stretcher bars out of some scrap 40x40 pine for a canvas 500x500mm, not because I have any particular painting in mind, but just to see how easy or hard it would be to make them. They're not hard.

They're not enormously expensive to buy, but they're far from free, and this gives me ultimate flexibility when it comes to size and profile.

I've learned one or two things in the process:

  • It would be a good idea to leave a bit of a horn on the tenon, to be sawn off after assembly.
  • Also, if I put a mortice at one end of each bar and a tenon at the other, they should (I think) be interchangeable. Though that's probably only worth while if I was making a whole bunch to be assembled later. For this one I did each bar with either mortices or tenons, to minimise the chances of getting myself lost.
The bars need to incline down on the front face towards the inner edge to keep them free of the canvas, and to help with that they have a thin raised bead running along the outer edge. That was easily made in one step on the table saw.

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