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Bad chops - can't join metal frames

Discussion in 'The Grumble' started by cjmst3k, Jul 12, 2017.

  1. cjmst3k

    cjmst3k SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    There's a disco'd nielsen, and one supplier has some left. They sent us chops, and when we join them, the face is very open. We can't figure out what to do. We tried using four hands when joining the metal bracket, and no luck. I have to assume the cut is off.

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  2. Larry Peterson

    Larry Peterson PFG, Picture Framing God

    Use your engineering square to check the cut and sand as necessary to get the cuts square.
  3. Greg Fremstad

    Greg Fremstad MGF, Master Grumble Framer

    Try bending the hardware slightly to force the front of the frame together.
  4. prospero

    prospero SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    Assuming you have the corner hardware in the right way round..... :rolleyes:......

    I think I had this issue once and fixed it by giving the corners of the L pieces a tap with a ball-ended hammer.
    This has the effect of making it twist inwards so when you tighten the grub screws the pressure is biased to pinch
    the face together. Make sure you tap it on the correct side - the side with the unslotted ends of the screws. The un-holey plate might need a tap as well. These plates already have a slight twist in them which is why it's important to have them the right way round.
  5. shayla

    shayla WOW Framer

    Also, try a strap clamp. If all else fails, you could ask the supplier to replace it with one that has good cuts.
  6. cjmst3k

    cjmst3k SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    I don't have an engineering square, nor a sander. :(

    I have a pistorius saw with wood blades, but that doesn't help.

    Tried bending the hardware. A little bend made it so they no longer fit. :(

    I assume you mean the screw plate behind the flat plate? I like to think I've been doing it right all these years! :)

    I'm not sure I'm picturing this correctly in my head...

    Thats the backup plan, however unsure what to tell them to change when they cut, and since there's only a little bit left and discontinued, don't want them experimenting on the last remaining amount. Don't want them to burn through the last remaining bits with bad cuts too.
    Last edited: Jul 12, 2017
  7. Lafontsee

    Lafontsee CGF II, Certified Grumble Framer Level 2

    We will occasionally tweak the corners on metal frames with staples. Squeeze out a couple of staples so they stay c-shaped and are not compressed. loosen the screws on the metal frame hardware and fit the spine of the staples into the channel between the hardware and the back lip of the channel. (See the attached picture.) You may have to play with which side they go on. Sometimes they go either outside or inside of the screws.
    Sounds weird, but it will occasionally work. I was skeptical the first time I heard about it.

    Good Luck!

    Attached Files:

    dpframing likes this.
  8. Larry Peterson

    Larry Peterson PFG, Picture Framing God

    Every framer should have an Engineering Square. A good one, not some home center carp. Can't go wrong with a Lee Valley one. http://www.leevalley.com/US/wood/page.aspx?p=32601


    I use mine on my VNailer a lot. I will adjust the fence on my vnailer for certain mouldings. I also use it to check to make sure a cut is perpendicular for certain hardwoods when I suspect blade deflection.

    For a metal frame that is slightly out of square you can get be without a sander. Just use a block of sandpaper to true it up. Trickier than using a sander but it can be done.

    I also have these.




    These come in handy also. I also have a 45 degree engineering sqaure but can't a picture of it right now.
    cvm and JFeig like this.
  9. Myrna

    Myrna CGF, Certified Grumble Framer

    Thanks for posting this picture. I remembered something to do with a staple but not the details. We used this in the past and it worked great.
    Lafontsee likes this.
  10. tedh

    tedh PFG, Picture Framing God

    Go find a framer with a non-ferrous blade and true saw. Trim all eight corners ever so slightly.

    Then reduce the subject size by that eighth, and fit it.
    Joe B likes this.
  11. Martyc85

    Martyc85 True Grumbler

    We use a decent amount of metal molding from Neilson, for the most part it is great to work with. 99 percent of the time it is awesome, but every now and then I will run into some that the bottom of the molding is sort of rounded and not flat, or it may not be square with back of the molding. In other words, when I am sawing it, it will want to roll forward when the blades of the saw come down and first touch it. If it rolls forward when cutting that will equal a gap at the front of the joint when putting the molding together, you can solve this when cutting the molding by either by keeping lot of pressure on the back of the molding or if its bad enough find some sort of very thin shim ( I have a little thin piece of metal I use ) to place under the front.

    Not sure if this is your problem but I have seen it happen before.

    Good Luck
  12. cjmst3k

    cjmst3k SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    We think its likely their blades may be off, so they're sending another chop for us to work with. It seems to my eye the moulding must have been leaning forward during the cut, and when its joined, it straightens the back and opens the top. Should this second set of chops be off, we'll have to do some serious tinkering! :)
  13. Frances M.

    Frances M. CGF II, Certified Grumble Framer Level 2

    We have had some bad metal chops from the Larson Atlanta warehouse and ,after returning all of them, are now set up to get our metals from the Baltimore warehouse which apparently has the best equipment which has not yet been provided to Atlanta.
  14. snafu

    snafu MGF, Master Grumble Framer

    You may want to try different hardware.
    I recently receive metal hardware (tapped angles) from Decor that were unusable
  15. Larry Peterson

    Larry Peterson PFG, Picture Framing God

    With an engineering square you don't need to 'eye' it. You can see exactly where it is off.
    cjmst3k likes this.
  16. JRB

    JRB PFG, Picture Framing God

    You can purchase a 10" blade for your saw that is not a blade at all, but a disc to attach sandpaper to: https://www.infinitytools.com/set-up-and-sanding-disk-3278 This same company also sells the sandpaper pre-cut discs for it. Buy one of these and you can turn you miter saw into a disc sander for cleaning up sloppy cuts from suppliers.

    I guess I should add a little more to this. Set your miter saw up with the sanding disc then lock it in the down position. Very carefully slide your mitered frame section along the fence until it just touches the spinning disc. You don't want to change the length of it, just true up the miters. Practice on some scrap to get the feel of it. Do not use this like a saw and bring it down onto your frame section.

    Last edited: Jul 26, 2017
  17. cjmst3k

    cjmst3k SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    Omega sent new chops. They seem to work now. JRB - I'm going to have to look into those sander discs. Since we cut 99.5% of all our non-metal mouldings, its rare we have an issue to be corrected, but this sounds like a good product to have in our backroom arsenal. Thanks!
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