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Question How can I keep an oversize photograph looking crisp without dry mounting?

picture framing clamps by MasterClamp 2021

FrameOfMind

Grumbler
Joined
Mar 12, 2009
Messages
19
Hello,
I just received an order for framing a large photograph. It measures 88 in wide. The customer does not want to dry mount the photograph, so I am worried that it will wrinkle in the frame with spacers keeping it from sticking to the glass. I have heard that using a sheet of reflection control acrylic turned inside out will not stick if placed directly onto a photograph because of it's coating. Any idea about the accuracy of that statement, or any other ideas in general?
Thanks.
 

Joe B

PFG, Picture Framing God
Forum Donor
Joined
Mar 29, 2008
Messages
5,543
Location
Blaine, Minnesota
I never trust that photos will not wrinkle unless drymounted. One of the problems with edge to edge framing with a space is that some framers put the photo, art, or poster on the spacers and then tighens the piece in there by installing the backing as tight as they can get it. There has to be a space for he item to expand and contract and then hopefully it will not get the waves. I use a discountinued 4 ply mat corner as a spacer between the backing and the point, removing the corner after installing the points, just to make sure there is plenty of space. Generally I will not have problems with waving or wrinkles if done with this space for movement.

I don't believe there is any coating on acrylic, from what I am told, the coatings are manufactured into the acrylic. It is the humidity that builds up inside the frame package that generally causes the sticking. Acrylic doesn't heat and cool as quick as glass so humidity is normally not a problem with acrylic but it is with glass. Applying the acrylic directly to the photo should be OK, it is called DCO (direct contact overlay) but if it is taken in and out in extreme weather I would not trust it totally. I have used DCO but I have always made sure it was on pieces that are replaceable and not of extremely high value.

I'm sure there are other opinions out there so stay tuned. Joe B
 
Last edited:

Prospero

SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God
Joined
Jul 16, 2007
Messages
19,453
Location
The Grand Duchy of Lincolnyshire
It's quite a forlorn hope to expect a piece of paper that size to remain dead flat unless bonded
to something more substantial. Overlaying it with acrylic will not keep it flat.
If it decides to go wavy it will. In fact I would go as far as to say that placing glazing directly on top
would greatly increase the likelihood of it going wavy.
Some prints are bonded to acrylic from the back, but that's just dry-mounting in reverse.

If sticking down is not an option the best you can do is put it into a frame without restricting the edges and
with minimal hinging.
But no matter how you do it there will be a high risk of it going wavy. :( It's the nature of the beast.
 

Joe B

PFG, Picture Framing God
Forum Donor
Joined
Mar 29, 2008
Messages
5,543
Location
Blaine, Minnesota
Totally agree with Prospero - if it isn't attached, expect waves. You can keep the waves to a minimal with proper spacing and hinging but otherwise there is not much that you can do about it. As Prospero says ":( It's the nature of the beast".
 

Matthew Hale

MGF, Master Grumble Framer
Joined
Dec 5, 2015
Messages
600
Location
OHIO
Client's often expect the impossible from us. It's our job as professionals to educate them regarding the best treatment and approach for their projects. Sometimes you just have to tell them they can't get exactly what they want. In this case they have a choice - hinge the art and live with the inevitable waves that will come and go, or drymount it and move on.
 
Airpag Corner, packing solution for frame shipping

Lafontsee

CGF II, Certified Grumble Framer Level 2
Joined
Sep 2, 2009
Messages
454
Location
Grand Rapids, MI
KoolTack Preserve is kind of an in between option. It's still a dry mount, but it is low temperature, acid free, and reversible (within certain limits). They make it in full 48 x 96 sheets. It should work great if you can get delivery and have a press that can handle the size. It's similar to ArtCare Restore, but much smoother. ArtCare Restore always seems too pebbly on glossy or thin media.

James
 
Hoffmann Dovetail Joining System
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