The N00b's Birch Picture Frames

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Project by Chris P. posted 03-10-2011 07:12 AM 2477 views 2 times favorited 5 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Continuing to learn a lot about how things work in the wood shop – what causes tear-out, how to use a keyhole bit – the lessons are endless (and often “learned” multiple times).

This is a gift for a good friend of mine, three pictures I took of his puppy printed on canvas and mounted on foamboard. I made the frames out of birch from the local hardwood shop – found a piece with some particularly interesting reflective qualities.

I cut the pieces and first joined with only gorilla glue (mostly because I am lazy). Then I decided to go back and try out the dowel jig I got, but failed because I couldn’t get the strap clamp around the pieces fast enough before the dowels started expanding. So I snapped them off, sanded them down, and finally settled on joining them with #10 biscuits.

Finish is three coats of tung oil.

Any advice peeps have on doweling successfully, I’m open!

5 comments so far

View Jesse 's profile


105 posts in 3779 days

#1 posted 03-10-2011 08:24 AM

I don’t know anything about doweling, but i do like your frames. Also, I see nothing wrong with gluing up miters. Although, gorilla glue wouldn’t be my choice for frames…it expands too much for me. If you wanna jazz it up and add some style to the corners you could try bridle joints or keyed miters.

View MOJOE's profile


571 posts in 4186 days

#2 posted 03-10-2011 01:08 PM

I don’t have a lot of experience with doweling either, but I would try glueing in pieces…..basically glue opposite corners, then once dry, glue 2 halves together to make 1 whole frame…..might give you a little extra working time.

-- Measuring twice and cutting once only works if you read the tape correctly!

View RandyMorter's profile


228 posts in 3607 days

#3 posted 03-10-2011 04:54 PM

I like the way the birch looks with the tung oil. You’ve got me inspired to try somethiing like this! I’ve got some birch laying around – I just hadn’t seen how nice it can look! Thanks!

-- Randy Morter, Phoenix, AZ

View Dusty56's profile


11861 posts in 4605 days

#4 posted 03-10-2011 05:07 PM

We refer to that as “Flame Birch” in my neck of the woods. I love it !!
You did a great job on the frames and I just might have to make some this year : )
Thanks for the inspiration !

-- I'm absolutely positive that I couldn't be more uncertain!

View Chris P.'s profile

Chris P.

79 posts in 3582 days

#5 posted 03-12-2011 06:06 PM

Thanks for the pointer – I used to get Wood (no pun intended) many years ago, when my dreams of making stuff were a lot farther off. I have been thinking I need to start that subscription again – where can I get sweet discounts on the subscription cost? :-)

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