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Old 11-12-2014, 12:19 AM
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Default Stretching Canvas for Painting

Has anyone built stretched canvas for use by painters? Know anything about choosing the sizes of stretchers? How about systems that allow retensioning of the canvas later?

I'd think small Dominos might be useful at the mitered corners, but if it then needs retensioning, how would I do it?

The sizes that I'm thinking about are 4'x6' (1.2m x 1.8m) and larger.

As always, if you can tell that there are questions I should be asking, please answer those.

Thanks,
Ned
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Last edited by NedYoung; 11-12-2014 at 12:23 AM.
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Old 11-12-2014, 12:42 AM
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Default Re: Stretching Canvas for Painting

Way back when I was in college, a couple of years after you, they sold standard sized stretcher members in the bookstore that had a mitered mortise & tenon joint; male on one end, female on the other. They were about like a 1"x2" and could be easily disassembled. If you build your own frames with Dominos, I'd leave the domino loose in one side of the joint, should the canvas ever need to be removed and the frame disassembled for moving. Raw canvas does shrink slightly when coated with a gesso base before a painting is created.

Many large paintings are routinely removed from their frames and rolled up for transport to another location. The exception is older works that can't take the flexing.
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Old 11-13-2014, 04:49 AM
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Default Re: Stretching Canvas for Painting

You can buy canvas stretcher bars at Dick Blick or Michael's craft stores - already cut with lock miters in whatever lengths you need. Dick Blick carries them up to 70" in length it looks like online.

You could order a couple and then make others to match, or just check the dimensions on their websites.

My wife does needlepoint and the needlepoint bars have an option of an adjustment screw on some of the bars. Check those out online - just google adjustable needlepoint stretcher bars.

If you are doing painting canvas, if you get the canvas stretcher pliers and staple the canvas, you should not have to adjust the bars for a long time - 20 or more years!

neil

Last edited by neilc; 11-13-2014 at 04:52 AM.
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Old 11-14-2014, 06:04 AM
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Default Re: Stretching Canvas for Painting

Many thanks for the info, Alex & Neil.

I found this video:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lWL4kXdXRzo

This was produced by the John Annesley Company, makers of what appear to be first-class canvas stretching pliers.
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