Starting out this year I've been focusing a bit on my display. I had the recent oscarcases purchase, but something I knew I really wanted to do was get some framing done for my Ad Slick and Cromalin.
Thanks to our own rebelchris, I found out about the site americanframe.com. As a test I decided to price out a frame for my ad slick to see what the cost was and it was a pretty good deal. Any order over $50 includes free shipping in the U.S. which was also nice. The frame arrived today after shipping on Monday and I thought I'd document the process in case anyone was interested in trying them out.
Their website is pretty straight forward. You input the dimensions of your piece and it will automatically calculate the size of frame, mat, etc that you'll need. You can also add a second mat and I might try that out with the Cromalin, as the samples I've seen have turned out quite nice. The default mat isn't made from archival materials, so you'll want to upgrade from that one. Once you've chosen your mat, your presented with options for the acrylic front. They offer two versions with UV protection, a glare, and non glare. I chose non glare for mine.
That's pretty much it for the ordering. I ordered on a Thursday and had shipping notice on the Monday after the weekend which I thought was a pretty decent ship time.
Today, I received all the materials and here they are spread out on the table.
Looking at the instructions online it said I'd need to assemble the frame pieces with wood glue and let them set overnight, but for some reason mine was already assembled. I'm not sure if that is because of it being a smaller frame or what.
The next step I did was getting the slick ready for the mat. The mat has a 1/8 of an inch overlap so I measured that on each side and made a mark in pencil. Now the question is how do you line up your piece with the mat and get it to stay without any permanent damage. American Frame has these archival strips, but unfortunately they were out of stock, so instead I ordered these which are also archival safe and no adhesive touches the piece.
So I placed one of the strips up to the adhesive portion to the tick mark on the mat and then did the same on one of the side. I then slid the slick into place and then placed the two remaining strips. Here is the slick with everything in place.
The next step was to put all the pieces into the frame in the order of acrylic, mat w/ slick, and backing board.
Now put the spring clamps around the back of the frame into position, drill the pilot holes, and then then insert the screws.
The last part is to determine how you want to hang the piece. You have the option of one of the sawtooth clips that you hammer into the top of the frame or you can hang with wire. I chose the sawtooth for mine, but on a larger piece I'd use the wire method.
Now for the final assembled piece.
It's great knowing that everything used was archival, UV protected and completely reversible without any damage done to the original piece. My first experience with americanframe.com was a great one and I'd recommend them to anyone wanting some cheaper framing and don't mind a little work.
If you've made it this far you can go get some rest now.