Anyone use this Tighten-Up product?

Tommy P

MGF, Master Grumble Framer
Nov 16, 2003
Mid North Indiana
Stretched a previously streched 39 x 52 canvas today. Customer brought it home from China. (see post on China art) It is acrylic (I believe) on linen.

Seemed to go okay but after a couple of hours it was'nt very taught. I spritzed it on the back with water and let dry but did'nt seem to help.

There is a product available from called Tighten-Up. Has any one used this and does it do what it claims? Tighten up a slightly lose canvas.

I hope I'm not going to be reprimanded for the wife, an artist, said to try it...
Framers taking framing advice from artists . . .

What's this world coming to?

Sound like trouble to me.

Remember the artist is my WIFE!!
I understand, Tom.

My wife suggested I plan to spend the day painting walls tomorrow. I'll probably follow her advice, too.
The dampen the back shouldn't do any harm but as you found out it won't tighten it either. Is the substrate linen or synthetic? Down here we are getting a lot of stuff on some type of synthetic backing and it is impossible to do much with. I wouldn't like too much tension on someting 39 x 52 that was prepainted anyway. Can't help with the Tighten-Up sounds like a PVAish thing, if it is might as well block it & be done with it?
Or you could try expandable strecther bars/Lebron Strecthers. This would allow you to strecth the canvas, but then go back and dial the keys out so the canvas becomes tighter.

Patrick Leeland
I've used it. It works claimed. I can only go by the products claims to be "archival". We've carried other products by the company too in our art supply store and they have all been fine quality wise. We were asked to carry it by some very traditional and finicy painters in the area. It sometimes takes quite a lot if the distortion is bad. It could very well contain a PVA but I don't know. The canvas where the product is used will feel stiff like it's been starched. I don't think it is removable. I think it's an ok solution in the right situation and I would use it again. Some of these artists spray their canvas' before painting (but after priming). They say that it never loosens up then and I think they like the stiffer feel. It is a fairly new product so it has that question mark against it I guess.
I used to carry the Masterpiece line of products when I was an art material dealer. Their products are excellent quality compared to some of the stuff out there.

I just ordered some Tighten-up from McCallister's in Dayton, Ohio. Good old George Bussinger, the owner, is a great guy and a past president of NAMTA (National Art Materials Trade Assoc). McCallister's carries almost anything you could need supply-wise and is one of the few true art supply stores where specialty products are available.. Their number is 1-888-419-6615.

Jim Cook (GUMBY)at Cook's in Canton is good too...better get that in, right Jim...but he's deep into custom framing and you'd be supporting a fierce competitor... ;)

Dave Makielski
Cook's Art Supply (where GUMBY resides)can be reached at 330-494-7730.

I just called and Jim doesn't carry the product yet, but he's going to talk to Masterpiece about having a case sent to every Grumbler...

Now there's a guy with "pull"!

Dave Makielski
The plot thickens....

Customer came and looked at the slightly loose stretched canvas I have been speaking of...

Likes what he sees and goes back to his law office ( I know, that's a red flag) and brings me the mate to what I have done.

Wants it stretched big deal.
After he leaves I unroll it and the tissue that it is rolled in is stuck in quite a few places to the art work!!! I will call him Monday....but what can be done?????