Thin black frames

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Thin black frames

Postby Ed209 » Tue Sep 26, 2017 5:46 pm

Is it me or are thin mouldings generally more different ie currently doing a couple of frames with Wessex a019 black approximately 14mm wide but very difficult to get perfect joints. Wider stuff general near on perfect


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Re: Thin black frames

Postby poliopete » Tue Sep 26, 2017 6:56 pm

Perhaps a little more info' will help to answer your question :|

May I ask what is going wrong with the joins and how are you joining :?:

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Re: Thin black frames

Postby Not your average framer » Tue Sep 26, 2017 7:44 pm

Narrow black frames are never much fun I'm afraid. As the frames get narrower, the manufacturer needs to use stronger wood to ensure that the moulding will have adequate strength to compensate for the reduced quantity of wood employed. Sadly, this also means that you have less choice where you can position your wedges and placing the wedge nearer the outside edge and the harder wood does not compress to the same extent as a softer wood, therefore the wedge displaces the wood outwards at the corner, resulting in a less tidy corner.

Sorry, but this is just one of those unfortunate facts of life which is no easy to overcome. Some models of underpinner have more effective rebate clamps and this can sometimes help a bit. There can also be a tendancy for the wedges to cause the corners to open a little while underpinning. I find that some types of wedges appear to perform better than others, but not everyone seems to agree about which wedges are best in this regard. I think that it's not just the wedges that you are using, but the combination of the wedges and the underpinner as well.

I have a CS-88 and to be honest, the rebate clamp is a little lacking at times ans there are times when I replace the hinged "L" guide with one made out of two pieces of wood joined together and with very fine sandpaper glued to the inside faces. This substantially reduces any tendancy of the corner to open as the wedge is inserted, by you do need to make sure that the rebate clamp is reasonable tightly positioned to start with. If you sandpaper is a nice fine grade it will not only grip well, but also not mark the moulding.

Sadly, the little rubbery rings in the CS-88 rebate clamp have a little too much give for my liking and don't tend to grip quite enough on harder wood mouldings. Hence the improvement by adding a little extra grip with the very fine sandpaper. I don't suppose that I will be the only one who prefers not to use narrow black mouldings that are unnecessarily narrow. Unfortunately, I still get customers who insist on having the narrowest possible black mouldings. I also note that far too many of these narrow black mouldings have ridiculously narrow rebates as well. A pet hate of mine!
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Re: Thin black frames

Postby kartoffelngeist » Wed Sep 27, 2017 10:05 am

Does anyone else get 'thin black frame' as the standard thing that customers ask for when they don't know what they want? Never sure if it's just me...

Also hate narrow frames. Going to have to have a go at pimping up my cs-88 though! Something with a bit more grip sounds helpful.
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Re: Thin black frames

Postby Jamesnkr » Wed Sep 27, 2017 10:54 am

kartoffelngeist wrote:Does anyone else get 'thin black frame' as the standard thing that customers ask for when they don't know what they want? Never sure if it's just me...


Because they think they will be the cheapest? Plain colour, and as small as possible.
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Re: Thin black frames

Postby vintage frames » Wed Sep 27, 2017 11:13 am

I'm often reading on this forum how framers seem to struggle with bad mitre-joins by blaming the underpinner. And I may be wrong in my thinking, but the purpose of an underpinner is to hold tight together two mitres and nail them together with a staple or two. The bed and fence of the underpinner will simply hold and reflect back the quality of the cut.
My impression is that if the cut is poor then no wriggling or clamping at the underpinner stage is really going to improve the situation.
Which gets us back to narrow mouldings. The only cutting reference that the Morso or saw sees is the base of the moulding. On a wide moulding the base is generous and holding down the moulding is easy, and prevents and rotation of the moulding during the cut. On an narrow moulding, then the base area is very narrow and even with well set fences, it's quite difficult to hold the moulding true to the cut.
So, I'd say if you're having trouble with your joins, look more closely at your cutting.
And of course be judicious enough with how you place the staples.
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Re: Thin black frames

Postby featurepiece » Wed Sep 27, 2017 2:17 pm

I hate narrow mouldings - in fact I have none on display and will only use them if the customer is 100% sure it's what they want. Most only really allow one wedge as anything else will probably open the join. But there's also the limitation of what we can use on the back as hanging hardware etc. If cost is a factor I'd rather take the hit and supply a slightly wider moulding & charge for the slim. Crazy I know but it's way I roll :D
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Re: Thin black frames

Postby Jamesnkr » Wed Sep 27, 2017 2:37 pm

There's always the option of metal frames, which come in very thin indeed - and you don't have the worry of cutting them.
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Re: Thin black frames

Postby Not your average framer » Wed Sep 27, 2017 7:34 pm

I used to stock a particular imported far eastern narrow black moulding and a while ago decided to ditch it in favour of an almost indentical european manufactured moulding. I have yet to order the replacement moulding at this stage, because some very similar european moulding turned up in a bundle of discontinued mouldings that was going cheap.

It was noticable that the european moulding beat the pants off of the far eastern moulding when it came to the quality of the joined corners. The european moulding used better quality and softer wood. Also the far eastern moulding was using finger jointed wood of an unknown variety.

I was interested to read the comments by Vintage Frames which also make a lot of sense.
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Re: Thin black frames

Postby Ed209 » Wed Sep 27, 2017 9:50 pm

I feel some of the problem with thin smooth black mouldings are there is not a lot to look at apart from the mitres and even the slightest imperfections stand out as you are looking for something, It would seem no mater how meticulous I am with my cutting and pinning I seem to get three very good mitres and one almost very good and then that obviously becomes the focus of attention. Best solution as others have said remove the offending chevrons and take a hit on something more substantial by offering it at the thinner price if budget is the reason


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Re: Thin black frames

Postby vintage frames » Thu Sep 28, 2017 10:16 am

Another thing you could try is to run a stanley blade vertically against the underside of the moulding, so as to scrape off any blisters or overpaint of the finishing laquers. On such narrow mouldings, even the smallest imperfection on a flat base can lead to an error in the cut.
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Re: Thin black frames

Postby Ed209 » Thu Sep 28, 2017 6:19 pm

Spent the afternoon tweaking the Morso and it seems to have improved things quit a bit, I originally had my R/h fence set at 45* to the blades the put a straight edge across to set the L/H fence parallel to that. everything checked out ok with rule and a decent quality 45* setting block.
But have found setting the L/h fence to 45* to the blades then just bringing the r/h fence to touch a rule that was running along the Morso rule better. Now things don't check out when you run a rule across the two fences there is a gap also the morso rule dosent run exactly parrelel to r/h fence but it cuts 99.9 perfect mitres and square according to my expensive fixed engineering square.
seen various ways to adjust morso, probably does not help using different scrap mouldings when trying to calibrate
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Re: Thin black frames

Postby Steve N » Fri Sep 29, 2017 8:54 am

The Right hand fence should line up with the ruler, because the moulding will be running along the ruler's edge, then run a straight edge along the ruler and right hand fence and the left fence, adjust the left fence so all three are then in-line, it doesn't matter if the individual fences are not spot on 45 degrees to the blades, it's the SUM of the two angles, if they add up to 90 degrees then it's right, because that is what you are doing , cutting a right angle at each corner of the frame
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Re: Thin black frames

Postby Ed209 » Fri Sep 29, 2017 9:24 am

My problem is the r/h fence does not line up completely parallel with the rule I can get the extreme r/h edge of the right fence to line up but you end up with a couple of mm gap towards the centre, have checked the rule and it seems ok not much adjustment on that and if it was altered it would not meet up correctly with the extended fixed/pinned rule. My two fences are not exactly parallel to each other either a steel rule pivots in the centre of the two.
Doesn’t seem right but at the moment I am getting good mitres and a frame with 90* angles


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Re: Thin black frames

Postby Ed209 » Fri Sep 29, 2017 9:55 am

Just had another look at set up have now set my near blade rule to line line up with a steel rule exactly with the pinned extension rule and set my fences to that all lines up ok now have not yet done cut. I think my problem was I was told the best way to adjust was to set fence with a 45 from the blades but what you say about the Sum of the two adding up makes sense


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Re: Thin black frames

Postby Jamesnkr » Fri Sep 29, 2017 9:58 am

Ed209 wrote:My problem is the r/h fence does not line up completely parallel with the rule I can get the extreme r/h edge of the right fence to line up but you end up with a couple of mm gap towards the centre


It sounds as though you have a fundamental problem in your setup. The right hand fence *has* to line up with the ruler. Otherwise anything shorter than the 6" to the ruler is held against the fence; anything longer against the ruler, and the two are not in line. Can't make sense.
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Re: Thin black frames

Postby prospero » Fri Sep 29, 2017 11:26 am

Beware setting the Morso up with the engineering square. The blades may be spot-on 45º but that doesn't necessarily
mean the cut mitre will be. As the blades wear - or if they haven't been ground to exact specs, they can deviate when
cutting though. This can also happen if the moulding isn't held firmly or sometimes if the blade bites into a part of the
moulding and the hits another ridge halfway though the cut. Wood is a natural material and has a grain. It's not metal.

It's best in my exp to tweak the blades until they give an accurate cut rather than rely on some theoretical ideal.

* If the right hand fence does not line up perfectly with the rule you are knackered before you start. There are some
Allen headed bolts that hold down the short section of the rule. Try slackening these and see if you can jiggle it to line
up. Then do the same on the long section. Once you get that side sorted you can tweak the left-hand fence (usually
toward you) in tiny steps and test with short (wider the better) offcuts until there is no gap. When you underpin the faces
of the final corner should be ever so slightly apart before you come to pin them. Pushing the together will cinch up
the other three corners.

There are many other factors. Where do you get your blades sharpened? :? Are they doing it right?
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Re: Thin black frames

Postby prospero » Fri Sep 29, 2017 11:36 am

Another thing that can happen on narrow mouldings is not having the rebate supports set right. If they are not snug
underneath the rebate the initial contact with the blades can cause the moulding to tip or flex. The blade then continues
on a 'wrong track' until it hits the main body of the moulding and then it rights itself. This gives you an imperfect plane on
the mitre face. It's worse on some mouldings than others. The best way I've found of correctly setting the supports is to move
the blades down until they are just in contact and hold you foot there. Wind up the supports until they are finger-tight. It's
hard to over tighten them while they have the weight of the cutter block holding the moulding down. Over tightening and
lifting the moulding off the bed is just as bad.
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Re: Thin black frames

Postby Ed209 » Fri Sep 29, 2017 12:09 pm

Thank you for advise I have now adjusted my rule/s and calibrated the fence/s off of that and all seems OK, as stated I was told to set the fences to blade with a 45* set sq
which I must say made perfect sense to me but following your detailed explanation I now see the errors of that way.

I have not had any blades sharpened yet, The Morso F is second hand and came with three sets of blades that had been sharpened, I did put a pair of the new blades on when I got the Morso, I followed the blade changing instructions by the letter and that seemed to go well.

I did see the instructions for setting the fences to the rule but was told the other way with 45 set sq was better.

I presume the blades were sharpened via Wessex as that is who the framer I got the equipment mainly used.

Any recommendations for best place to send for sharpening please?

Had similar problems with my Keencut Ultimat Futura turns out the blades I inherited were wrong for general use (d15) spoke to Andy at keencut and he sent me some S12's and that has made a big difference, only turned up in the post this morning so re calibrating Keencut right now>
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Re: Thin black frames

Postby prospero » Fri Sep 29, 2017 12:27 pm

I mention the blade sharpening issue because certain folks actually contemplate taking them down to the local
lawnmower dealer to save a few quid. :| Or worse still doing them themselves with a bench grinder. :| :|
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