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Point Drivers - Your Favorite?

Discussion in 'The Voting Booth' started by John Ranes II CPF GCF, Feb 26, 2003.


What is your primary tool for fitting frames?

  1. Fletcher FrameMaster (Black point driver)

  2. Fletcher FlexiMaster (Green point driver)

  3. Fletcher MultiMaster (Yellow point driver)

  4. Fletcher No 5 Point Driver (Glazier's diamonds/triangles)

  5. Elpa F-18 (Yellow brad driver)

    0 vote(s)
  6. Elpa F-15 (Flexibile point driver)

  7. Pneumatic Cassese Flexibile point driver

  8. Pneumatic Staple driver (Senco and others)

    0 vote(s)
  9. Fletcher Pneumatic FrameMaster (New)

  10. Fletcher Pneumatic FlexiMaster (New)

    0 vote(s)
  11. FrameMate (Green manual fitting tool)

  12. Manual fitting tools (Brad Pusher, etc.)

  13. Other

    0 vote(s)
  1. John Ranes II CPF GCF

    John Ranes II CPF GCF SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer


    Since Jodie Prymke has now discovered that it was some defective points that caused her concern with her Green Fletcher Flexipoint Drive, I thought it might be interesting/educational to find what type of fitting tools we all tend to use and or prefer......

    [ 02-25-2003, 07:00 PM: Message edited by: John Ranes II, CPF, GCF ]
  2. Lance E

    Lance E Member

    Hard call, depending on the frame type, Ready Made or Custom. I chose Custom...
  3. B. Newman

    B. Newman SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    Interesting story behind my very first point driver - that old Fletcher diamond point driver. Joe and I got married in July 1975, and for our first Christmas, he got me that point driver. Now, is that some man or what?! :D

  4. MarkG1

    MarkG1 MGF, Master Grumble Framer


    That is sweet! If my wife only felt the same way you do, about point drivers.

    Hey, as long as you get "diamonds" for Christmas.
  5. Jodie Noname

    Jodie Noname True Grumbler

    I like the way John Ranes II has put my name in bold!
    Thanks for this,
  6. John Ranes II CPF GCF

    John Ranes II CPF GCF SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    Do you use..... [​IMG] or [​IMG] or [​IMG] or [​IMG] or...........

    [ 03-18-2003, 03:39 PM: Message edited by: John Ranes II, CPF, GCF ]
  7. B. Newman

    B. Newman SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    I dunno John. A picture is worth a thousand words for sure, (which most of us have nooooo problem expounding) but I'm not sure point drivers have the "glamour" to bring it out! :rolleyes:

  8. Peter Bowe

    Peter Bowe CGF II, Certified Grumble Framer Level 2

    Our shop has 11 of the 12 fitting tools listed in the poll (plus 4 not listed) but we use the pneumatic tools 99% of the time. I think carpal tunnel syndrome would have taken me down about 20,000 pictures ago if not for compressed air.

    Peter Bowe
    Saline Picture Frame Co.
  9. John Ranes II CPF GCF

    John Ranes II CPF GCF SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    Peter, I tried to include as many as possible. I'm curious as to the four I missed....do they sort of fit into one of the groups, or are they really unique?


    [ 03-18-2003, 05:15 PM: Message edited by: John Ranes II, CPF, GCF ]
  10. Dermot

    Dermot SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer


    Are you including hammers!!!!



  11. Peter Bowe

    Peter Bowe CGF II, Certified Grumble Framer Level 2


    [I'm curious as to the four I missed....do they sort of fit into one of the groups, or are they really unique?]

    3 of them fit into your groups;
    Fletcher #1 diamond point driver (circa 1968)
    Red Devil #2 diamond point driver (circa 1950?)
    Senco narrow crown stapler

    the fourth is a face frame drilling jig for angled screw holes which we use to install stacked frames & large strainers.

    I found this to be an interesting question. When I did a cost/benefit analysis for purchasing a CMC I talked to an engineer friend who said "process improvements are almost always a good investment". This phrase has become a watchword for me as I monitor the way we operate our shop. We fit almost 7000 pictures last year. Saving a small amount of time - say 15 seconds - per picture adds up to almost 30 hours of staff time over a years time. 30 hours & possibly avoiding a repetitive motion disorder make considering fitting tools time well spent.

    Peter Bowe
    Saline Picture Frame Co.
  12. Hannu Nystrom

    Hannu Nystrom True Grumbler


    I'm disappointed. You should be a specialist but you forgot Elettrograf. That's the Ferrari of point drivers...well, at least it's made in Italy. Fletcher seems to dominate. How did you get to vote so many times? I thought this is one man/woman, one vote deal [​IMG]

  13. jframe

    jframe <span style="color: red"><b><i>Charter Member</i><

    It's been many years since I have looked at pneumatic fitting tools. What is eveyone's current favorite and which ones are the lightest in weight? Do any of them use several sizes of points/staples?
  14. Rick Granick

    Rick Granick SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    Call me old-fashioned, but I can't believe that usage of the #5 point driver is so low. I love the diamond points. It is so useful that they can be bent down to grip into the backing when needed. I just bought a new driver to replace one of my aging oldies. My one complaint about that model: why can't they make the trigger levers out of something better than painted pot metal? I hate when they break in your hand. Their longevity is as unpredictable as that of halogen track-light bulbs. Some last quite a while, and others "burn-out" fairly young.
    I do like the multimaster system. It comes in quite handy when you need more surface area at the point-to-backing contact area. Of course the neatest trick is using the hole in the point with screws. A great innovation.

    :cool: Rick
  15. B. Newman

    B. Newman SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    I noticed, far too late to edit my post, that my first gun was a Red Devil point driver. That thing is heavy as a rock! I started out using one of those brad things like the first picture.

    I also have one like the second picture. I actually used it yesterday. I use it when I don't want to "jar" the frame, or when I just want to pull the points in gently. (When I have to remove framer's points to, uh, "go fishin" I just put the points in a pimento jar, and I've got all the loose points I'll ever need!)

    Man, I love old tools!

  16. Framar

    Framar SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    Betty, your remarks about the old point driver made me clean up my old Red Devil (which is marked "patent pending") driver. I washed the gunk of over 50 years from the wooden heel, and gazed fondly at the bent nail holding the thingamabob in place. I inherited this from Kramer the Framer and it took me years to get it working just right, but for some jobs there is no better fastener.

    It kicks like a mule, though, and I remember the first couple of weeks at the fitting table back in '69, when my hands were so swollen that my palms looked like pillows.

    I like the F-18 for its nonbending nails, but a minor annoyance is that I couldn't repair it when the spring broke. I ordered new parts and then just couldn't make them go in. Had to send it out for repair.

    The Fletcher flexi-driver which rounds out my trio of fitting guns, is better for some woods than others, but I do love the easy action and no recoil.

    I will be buried with that Red Devil, though, and when I made my miniature frame shop (The Framaree) I carved a teensy (3/4") replica and used a bent paperclip for the gizmo. I painted it red and then distressed the heck out of it.

    And while we're on the subject, one of the first toys, er, tools that I bought for my shop 20 years ago was a BRAND NEW point driver, which was made out of aluminum and painted green. This broke in half after a few weeks, so I went back to cast iron. Sometimes ya just can't beat cast iron!
  17. DB

    DB SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    I noticed that several of those who voted use the yellow point driver as a backup. I bought it to fit some canvases, but the points are too short. Given the allowance of a typical frame, I find that the screw hole falls short of the ideal placement for a screw...usually it's partly in the gap of the allowance. We're back to using offset clips for most canvas fitting jobs.
  18. John Ranes II CPF GCF

    John Ranes II CPF GCF SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer


    I've heard this from a few framers at trade shows, and I agree that the points could be a bit longer to "reach" across the gap. In our own shop, however, we've found that we can fudge* these out a bit and still not weaken the hold. This allows us to get the screw into more of the frame moulding.

    *(pull the canvas towards one side - Shoot Multipoints into canvas - Drill & Screw - Then snug the canvas towards the opposite side of the frame and add the Multipoint on that side.)


    [ 03-27-2003, 01:27 PM: Message edited by: John Ranes II, CPF, GCF ]
  19. DB

    DB SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    Thanks for the tip, John. We'll give it a 'shot'! (sorry, I HAD to say it!)
  20. Framing Goddess

    Framing Goddess SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    I love my Senco pneumatic staplers.
    We use 1/4" staples for stretching canvasses and 1/2" staples for standard fitting.
    I'd rather fight than switch.
    Those other fitters have WAY too much kick to them and are too hard on the hands.

    edie the prissyaboutmymitts goddess
  21. Jana

    Jana SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    I agree with Edie. That's what we use.

    [ 03-29-2003, 09:18 PM: Message edited by: Jana ]

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