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Thread: trying to turn a picture frame

  1. #1

    trying to turn a picture frame

    7 inch outside diameter with a 5 inch diameter picture. I am having trouble trying to figure out how to mount the piece for turning. I mounted a 4/4 mahogany(I thought) plank on the worm screw mounted in the chuck and turned the outer rim and face. I hollowed out the center (except for a half inch around the worm screw) and removed all but about 3/16 of the center. leaving the face almost complete and the back unturned. Am I right in figuring to use the cole jaws to mount the piece to cut out the interior and finish the "mortise/tennon/spigot" for the glass and picture?

    When I started, I thought I had a nice piece of reddish mahogany, probably Honduran. (I got it as a cut off from a casket company almost thirty years ago.) Now that the face is sanded down to 400 grit, it is more of a honey golden color instead of red. It does have some really nice, hate to use this word for the first time,,,,, chatoyance. (can't think of another word that fits) Where I cut the plank with the table saw, the wood was indeed reddish brown. that red has disappeared.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Lewiston, Idaho
    Before I started something like this, I'd mount the wood for the frame to a piece of sacrificial wood that was attached to a face plate. The wood for the frame could be screwed to the sacrificial piece or mounted via turners tape. Then turn the frame to finish.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Fredericksburg, TX
    Try your method on a piece of pine or whitewood to work out the details as to method and don't worry too much about finish or surface finish. It sounds like using the Cole jaws would work to finish up the inside at back, and also using a waste piece fastened to the frame section would work but would leave the screw holes. Good reason to try practice piece first.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    McMinnville, Tennessee
    This video by Carl Jacobson might give some ideas.

    Sid Matheny
    McMinnville, TN

  5. #5
    Whenever I need to make something like this, I use friction holding methods. A recess cut into plywood disk with the work press fit to cut and finish the back side. Then reverse the piece to shape the face. A bit of double sided tape or a couple of spots of hot melt glue add some sense of security but you really donít need it if you get the fit right.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Kansas City
    I have several boards of Honduran mahogany with a honey-gold tone to them, not the reddish brown tone you'd expect.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2018
    Sparta Tn
    I didn't watch Carl's video but I would do it with double stick tape. Don't use the foam backed tape buy the good stuff that has cloth backing. You can get it from most turning supply places. You will still have to find a way to center it because you probably want to turn both sides. I would turn the rear first. Then you will have a rabbit shape for the glass and that can be used to align it to turn the front side. Use a large wooden blank screwed to a faceplate or chuck. Mark centers on your blank. Put double stick tape on the back. Then use the tailstock to push against the center marks and press it against the faceplate. Turn the opening and then turn the rabbit for the glass and rough out the outside. Remove it from the faceplate (I find a long thin knife works well) Turn a very shallow tenon on your faceplate that is a jam fit to the rabbit opening in your mirror. The put some more double stick tape and push your mirror blank back on, the tenon will align it perfectly. Now turn the front side.

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