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How To Build And Install A Mission Style Frame For An Existing Bathroom Mirror

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Project by James E McIntyre posted 05-06-2020 04:19 AM 1969 views 2 times favorited 12 comments Add to Favorites Watch

This is a mirror frame I made and installed in the bathroom of our guest bedroom after I finished the lower cabinet and the granite counter tops were installed.
It’s made from QSWO.

It’s a large frame at 11’ long x 45” high.

The biggest challenge for me on this project was sawing 11’6” pieces through my table saw in my small shop.
In one door and out the other.

The frame was glued with biscuits, stained and finished before installation. Parts that were to be glued were taped before finishing.

I stained the rear side of the frame that faces the mirror 1/2” in from all inside parts. If this isn’t done the 1/4” mirror will reflect the unfinished wood behind the frame.

In the photo above (the part on the left) the top cap of the upper part of the frame is 3/4” high x 1-1/2” deep.
The lower detail on the top part of the frame is 5/8” high x 1-1/8” deep.

It’s half I-beam design gives it greater strength.

The top part of the frame is 5” high.
The sides and the bottom of the frame are 2-3/4” wide.

I added a 5/16” x 3/8” piece that came from the resaw of the bottom detail of the top piece on the back top of the frame to compensate for the thickness of the mirror.


The parts were attached to the mirror and drywall with Loctite 0 sec. Power Grab, and braced from the opposite wall for 24 hours. After etching the mirror with a multi tool with a carbide attachment. Caution was used to avoid breaking the mirror from vibrations and sonic resonance.


Along with the Loctite all corners were glued using #10 biscuits and Titebond III. The Loctite was placed 1-1/4”+ from the edge of the frame to avoid being seen.

The top part of the frame was attached to the wall studs using pocket holes I made using a 1-1/8” forstner bit drilled at a 15 degree angle then drilling holes for the #8 2-1/2” screws.
I tried using my pocket hole jig but it wouldn’t work on the 1-1/2” top piece.

Here’s an illustration I found on the internet explaining how to make your own pocket holes using a forstner bit.

Here’s the lights and extenders I had to make because the frame and mirror are almost two inches wider now.

Next I’ll install these lights, a towel rack, medicine cabinet and a new walk-in shower.

Thanks for visiting.

-- James E McIntyre





12 comments so far

View Mark Wilson's profile

Mark Wilson

2970 posts in 2520 days


#1 posted 05-06-2020 07:20 AM

That’s an awesome job, James. No fear of wood movement? That’s too big a bloody mirror to have crack. Is there play in the frame? Rubber spacers between glass and wood?

-- Mark

View James E McIntyre's profile

James E McIntyre

1886 posts in 2749 days


#2 posted 05-06-2020 07:51 AM

Thanks Mark. Do you mind if I study your very good question for a while Before I answer it. I think the I have the answer.
The Loctite has some elasticity and I hope it will be ok. White oak is very stable and doesn’t move very much vertical or horizontal
I have a project on my project sight that I did in 2018 of a similar mirror Frame project that’s doing fine. Check it out. Thanks for the first comment.
Wood movement doesn’t occur on length, only on width. I hope this will help on this project.

-- James E McIntyre

View AandCstyle's profile

AandCstyle

3306 posts in 3714 days


#3 posted 05-06-2020 11:19 AM

James, that is a great solution to make a very difficult project into a very doable one. The completed frame is typical of your work, outstanding!

-- Art

View Jim Jakosh's profile

Jim Jakosh

27698 posts in 4562 days


#4 posted 05-06-2020 11:24 AM

WOW, Jim. That is a big frame! Nice work on it. Is the mirror stuck to the wall so you did not have to handle it?

Cheers, Jim

-- Jim Jakosh.....Practical Wood Products...........Learn something new every day!! Variety is the Spice of Life!!

View splintergroup's profile

splintergroup

6944 posts in 2679 days


#5 posted 05-06-2020 02:32 PM

Doing what you did with that huge mirror just baffles me 8^) I worry about small box mirrors cracking or otherwise running my day, you just jump in with both feet and get-r-done!

Looks fantastic! That bathroom will eventually surpass you laundry room for elegance.

View luck's profile

luck

23 posts in 4504 days


#6 posted 05-06-2020 02:51 PM

Great job

-- Luc, Gatineau Quebec

View sras's profile

sras

6697 posts in 4586 days


#7 posted 05-06-2020 04:51 PM

Nice solution! Those unframed mirrors always look a little bare – nice upgrade!

-- Steve - Impatience is Expensive

View James E McIntyre's profile

James E McIntyre

1886 posts in 2749 days


#8 posted 05-06-2020 09:24 PM

Thanks Art, Luck and Sras.

-- James E McIntyre

View James E McIntyre's profile

James E McIntyre

1886 posts in 2749 days


#9 posted 05-06-2020 09:31 PM



Doing what you did with that huge mirror just baffles me 8^) I worry about small box mirrors cracking or otherwise running my day, you just jump in with both feet and get-r-done!

Looks fantastic! That bathroom will eventually surpass you laundry room for elegance.

- splintergroup

Thanks Splinter! Like you said I’ll have to charge admission.

I was thinking of what you said about cat hair becoming a condiment.
In my shop it’s becoming a component of my finishing.

-- James E McIntyre

View James E McIntyre's profile

James E McIntyre

1886 posts in 2749 days


#10 posted 05-06-2020 09:38 PM


WOW, Jim. That is a big frame! Nice work on it. Is the mirror stuck to the wall so you did not have to handle it?

Cheers, Jim

- Jim Jakosh

Thanks Jim. The mirror was attached to the wall I think back in 1985 before we bought the house. We bought it in 1996.
It must be glued with mirror mastic.

-- James E McIntyre

View therealSteveN's profile

therealSteveN

9985 posts in 2031 days


#11 posted 05-07-2020 06:02 AM

Wow James, that is just bleeping huge. Big mirror hardly covers that puppy. What do you figure it weighs? Nice job on the build.

-- Think safe, be safe

View James E McIntyre's profile

James E McIntyre

1886 posts in 2749 days


#12 posted 05-07-2020 04:29 PM


Wow James, that is just bleeping huge. Big mirror hardly covers that puppy. What do you figure it weighs? Nice job on the build.

- therealSteveN

Thanks Steven. I was wondering the same thing. My guess would be approx. 40 lbs.
The top part is the heaviest and supported by the studs. The next is the bottom resting on the backsplash.

-- James E McIntyre

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