How to Make a Silk Screen Frame

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How to Make a Silk Screen Frame. Printing a silk screen is a lot of fun. But before you do it, you need to make a frame. It's worth putting a bit of effort into this step, because a well-built frame will last a lifetime.

Things You'll Need

  • Brushes
  • Polyurethane Finishes
  • Wood : Pre-routered Framing Material Or Kiln-dried 2x2s
  • Wood Glues
  • 1-inch Wood Screws
  • C-clamps
  • Medium-grit Sandpaper
  • Miter Saws
  • Variable-speed Drills

Choose Supplies

  • Decide how large your frame will be.

  • Choose a type of frame. Your options, essentially, are two: framing wood that is pre-routered for stretching the silk screen (and often precut in standard sizes), and plain wood (2-by-2) that you buy at a hardware store or lumberyard. Option 1 is easier but more expensive.

  • Buy your supplies.

Build a Frame from Pre-routered Wood

Build a Frame From Scratch

  • Buy kiln-dried lumber (2-by-2). Eyeball it to choose the least-warped pieces.

  • Cut to the desired length, using a mitre saw. If you're an experienced carpenter, try lap-joint construction for greater stability.

  • Join pieces two at a time to form corners, using screws and wood glue.

  • Allow the frame to dry.

  • Sand any sharp corners or edges to protect your fabric.

  • Coat with polyurethane finish to seal and protect the wood.

Tips & Warnings

  • Pre-routered wood stock will have a groove cut into it for placing rope to stretch the silk screen fabric.
  • Try using angle braces on the non-grooved side for greater stability.
  • Sanding the inside corners where the grooves meet up will protect your fabric.
  • Try using angle braces on the corners for greater stability.
  • Check twice before you mitre - cutting in the wrong direction is a common mistake.

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