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Ready to light my fletcher on fire

GreyDrakkon

MGF, Master Grumble Framer
Joined
Aug 25, 2010
Messages
545
Haven't been on this site in a few years, just remembered I had it bookmarked in time for me to have a nice rant ready to blast that's related to framing. I'm chugging along getting four frames ready for someone who's in a rush to get them for a show, everything is going well with fitting the second to last one together until "CLICK." Fuuuuuuuuuuuuu. I pull the trigger to my flexi point fletcher again just to see if it will eject the point, sometimes I get lucky and it will spit it out at high velocity and clear out the chamber. No such luck. Ok, how about I remove the front block, sometimes the point ends up wonky and I can pry it out just by-of fer crying out loud. The "hammer" (the flat piece of metal that hits the point and sends it out) is slid back and there's no point to be found. This is the second time it's happened, and I had to pull the entire thing apart (with springs going everywhere) and it took forever to put it together (because springs like going everywhere but where they need to go) and it lasted one whole month. Gnnnar. Ok, well I'm pretty sure there's another fletcher laying around here somewhere, lemme just load it up and "click". Oh yeah, that one's broken too, that's why we bought the new one. That doesn't work well. Well let's look around, there must be something else, ah, another fletcher...That uses the silver points. And we're out because we switched to the flexi points because they used to be useful. :mad: Ok back to the job at hand, just needed to blow that off before I threw something. Like a fletcher.
 

Jeff Rodier

SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God
Joined
Jul 28, 2005
Messages
19,206
Get a manual point driver from 888 Manufacturing that fires both hard and soft points. I sell them to the local artists and have only had one with issues. Customer had spilled a Coke and it gummed up the points so they wouldn't feed and it took one minute to clean the syrup out. I've put over 40,000 points through the one I use with no misfires. They are also half the price and the points are 1/4 the price. 888's pneumatic driver shoots both hard and soft and only costs 2x the price of a Fletcher manual.
 
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Rick Granick

SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God
Joined
Jun 30, 1999
Messages
18,939
Steve, those oldies must be diamond point guns, as I don't think the framers points have been around that long. I still occasionally use my old diamond point driver for certain particular situations. I've had to replace various parts on it many times, and have gotten them from United, or from older, broken drivers I saved to rob for parts. I could rebuild one of those in my sleep.
:popc: Rick
 

prospero

SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God
Joined
Jul 16, 2007
Messages
19,229
1/2" brads and a little hammer. That's how we did it in the olde days.


Tell that to the kids today - and they won't believe you. :icon11:
 

Rick Granick

SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God
Joined
Jun 30, 1999
Messages
18,939
Well, they still make these. (I have an older, metal-handled version that works really well.)
:cool: Rick

 

Frances M.

CGF II, Certified Grumble Framer Level 2
Joined
Apr 10, 2006
Messages
344
I tried to fix my new one when the push plate (?) seemed to get stuck in the wrong position. Looked all over internet and Grumble to see if there were any directions and only saw one video about changing the spring. Tried to follow directions to see if I could shift the push plate. Now I have a Baggie full of point driver parts - there is no way I'm getting that puppy put back together. I would use it for parts for my old worn out one but suspect I would then have 2 bags of useless parts.
 

artfolio

SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer
Joined
Feb 16, 2007
Messages
2,651
Thanks for the (re)welcome, and the recommendation. I had to resort to using a stapler, like some sort of framing barbarian, to finish the project in time.
Gee!! I must be a barbarian because a staple tacker is my weapon of choice for closing frames. The only time I use a points driver is for those jobs where the customer wants to be able to change or insert the artworkthemselves.
Looking at mine (Fletcher) it is obvious that it is only built to "handyman" standards and is not a rugged tool designed for regular use by a serious craftsman.
 
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GreyDrakkon

MGF, Master Grumble Framer
Joined
Aug 25, 2010
Messages
545
Urg, brads, yeah I could have resorted to those I suppose. I've had to use them for certain situations and the pincher thing we use (and the spare) wobble all over the place and generally make the job take three times longer than it has to.

Frances, I've actually dismantled and completely put together one of these things at least twice, this will be the third time. It helps if you have some sort of telekinetic power to hold the springs in place, or have a mutation for octopus limbs, or just be incredibly stubborn. I curse it out, too. I think it helps.

Artfolio, being a barbarian isn't all bad, you have good company like Conan and Red Sonja. Perhaps even Captain Caveman, although I suppose he's a bit more old school than a barbarian.
 

John Ranes II CPF GCF

SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer
Joined
Jun 7, 1999
Messages
3,803
artfolio said:
...Looking at mine (Fletcher) it is obvious that it is only built to "handyman" standards and is not a rugged tool designed for regular use by a serious craftsman.
I would disagree. We've been using Fletcher FrameMaster point drivers (black) as our standard fitting tool for almost all projects since they were released in the mid-1980's. We also have a Fletcher FlexiMaster (green) that is used when customers need to remove the contents (Flexible points) and a Fletcher MultiMaster (Yellow) for stacking frames.

Rick Granick said:
Steve, those oldies must be diamond point guns, as I don't think the framers points have been around that long. I still occasionally use my old diamond point driver for certain particular situations. I've had to replace various parts on it many times, and have gotten them from United, or from older, broken drivers I saved to rob for parts. I could rebuild one of those in my sleep.
:popc: Rick
Rick, the Fletcher FrameMaster has probably been around longer than you think. I'm thinking it was first released in 1984-86. Like you, we used the old No.3 and No.5 Fletcher Glazier guns prior to then. Those old metal drivers were heavy, used waxed Diamond points and had a strong kick. The FrameMaster was a huge improvement, and used the "Framers Point" which BTW was the first fitting point designed specifically for the picture framing industry = long like a brad (adaptation) and flat like a glaziers point (adaptation)

Regards,

John
 

John Ranes II CPF GCF

SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer
Joined
Jun 7, 1999
Messages
3,803
Frances M said:
I tried to fix my new one when the push plate (?) seemed to get stuck in the wrong position. Looked all over internet and Grumble to see if there were any directions and only saw one video about changing the spring. Tried to follow directions to see if I could shift the push plate. Now I have a Baggie full of point driver parts - there is no way I'm getting that puppy put back together...
Frances,

It really is a fairly easy process, once you know how to disassemble any of the FrameMaster family of point drivers. I recently returned from a training session with the Hobby Lobby Lead framers and reviewed with them all how to do this. All the veterans had it down pat, and the new folks did it right in front of me. Yes...it can be intimidating the first time, but once you understand how and what to do, it's "a piece of cake!"

GreyDrakkon said:
...This is the second time it's happened, and I had to pull the entire thing apart (with springs going everywhere) and it took forever to put it together (because springs like going everywhere but where they need to go) and it lasted one whole month. Gnnnar.

.....Well let's look around, there must be something else, ah, another fletcher...That uses the silver points. And we're out because we switched to the flexi points because they used to be useful...
Grey,

As you are a neighbor ;) (Iowa that is), you are more than welcome to visit me anytime and I would be glad to show you how easy it is to repair, disassemble and reassemble your Fletcher drivers. In fact, we're hosting the PPFA Chapter meeting on September 7th at our shop in Appleton. The Heartland and Wisconsin PPFA Chapters are bringing in multiple speakers for this event. If you elect to journey up for this event, I would be more than happy to spend 15 minutes with you and demonstrate what I know. :thumbsup: Send me a PM or an email if this works for you.

Regards,

John
 

GreyDrakkon

MGF, Master Grumble Framer
Joined
Aug 25, 2010
Messages
545
Thanks for the invitation, John! I might take you up on a visit sometime, but I have to say I'm a native New Englander, and the notion of driving for hours to get somewhere triggers all sorts of horror. ;)

I ended up buying one of the point drivers from 888. I actually like the feel of it better, there isn't as much of a kick when I pull the trigger so thinner mouldings don't get jostled as much. Maybe I just managed to get a bad fletcher, but it was aggravating enough that it's pretty much soured me on the brand. Especially since that wasn't the first point gun failure I've dealt with.
 

framah

PFG, Picture Framing God
Joined
Mar 15, 2001
Messages
8,751
Here's a little hint to minimize the "jostling" thinner frames get...

Press a block of wood on the outside of the frame where you are driving the point and as you pull the trigger, push against the frame with the block. This gives the frame more mass and helps minimize movement of the frame allowing the point to drive in farther.:thumbsup:
 
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Larry Peterson

PFG, Picture Framing God
Forum Donor
Resource Provider
Joined
Apr 8, 2003
Messages
8,356
Here's a little hint to minimize the "jostling" thinner frames get...

Press a block of wood on the outside of the frame where you are driving the point and as you pull the trigger, push against the frame with the block. This gives the frame more mass and helps minimize movement of the frame allowing the point to drive in farther.:thumbsup:
Same same except I substitute my thumb for the block of wood. Never can find that pesky block of wood. Most of the time I can find my thumb.
 

Frances M.

CGF II, Certified Grumble Framer Level 2
Joined
Apr 10, 2006
Messages
344
John,

I have no doubt it's easy it to put the thing back together if "you know how to do it". But the thing is that I don't so I can't and I can't find anything written or on video that shows how. So it's all in a Baggie.
 

Larry Peterson

PFG, Picture Framing God
Forum Donor
Resource Provider
Joined
Apr 8, 2003
Messages
8,356
Backups.

I regularly troll eBay for used framing equipment. Within the last month I found a Fletcher flexi point driver for a good price and it is now my backup. I also found a NIB ATG 700 gun with a 752C gun thrown in free plus 2 rolls of 3/4" ATG. All for $31.00 plus shipping. Unbeatable plus now I have some backups.
 

tedh

SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God
Joined
Nov 7, 2005
Messages
11,538
So there's nothing on Youtube? Should be.
 
Vermont Hardwoods solid wood picture frame molding

John Ranes II CPF GCF

SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer
Joined
Jun 7, 1999
Messages
3,803
John,

I have no doubt it's easy it to put the thing back together if "you know how to do it". But the thing is that I don't so I can't and I can't find anything written or on video that shows how. So it's all in a Baggie.
Frances,

Every January, I spend a week in Atlanta at the Gift Market....If you are game and come into town, I'd be glad to put one of these together....and most important show you how to do this yourself! :D

As good as video and manuals may be...there is NOTHING like one-on-one training.

John
 

John Ranes II CPF GCF

SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer
Joined
Jun 7, 1999
Messages
3,803
GreyDrakkon said:
Thanks for the invitation, John! I might take you up on a visit sometime, but I have to say I'm a native New Englander, and the notion of driving for hours to get somewhere triggers all sorts of horror. ;)
Grey,

Please do take me up on my offer...a PPFA gathering is the perfect excuse, but our doors are open any other time as well. :thumbsup:

Your reply did make me smile as I know that New Englanders will drive if there is motivation. I just completed a road trip to Mass/New Hampshire/Maine and got the great priviledge of poking around some framers back rooms in those states. John Ranes Picture Framer - Road Trip.

Do drop me a note if you decide to head our way.

Cheers,

John
 

GreyDrakkon

MGF, Master Grumble Framer
Joined
Aug 25, 2010
Messages
545
Here's a little hint to minimize the "jostling" thinner frames get...

Press a block of wood on the outside of the frame where you are driving the point and as you pull the trigger, push against the frame with the block. This gives the frame more mass and helps minimize movement of the frame allowing the point to drive in farther.:thumbsup:
...You know, that's common sense, but like Larry I was just using my thumb to hold it in place. You just made me look around, and realize I can put the frame against my mat cutter. I'm almost too embarrassed to say that it worked perfectly and I had never thought of doing that. How many years have I been framing now? >_< Just goes to show ya, you never stop learning as long as you're willing to listen.
 

Jeff Rodier

SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God
Joined
Jul 28, 2005
Messages
19,206
A great weight to hold to the outside of the frame for points is a piece of steel bar stock. Stop at the local metal fabrication shop and get a 6" piece of 1" square scrap and cover it in fabric. No particular size is required just buy a scrap of whatever they have with flat sides.
 
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hangupsgallery

MGF, Master Grumble Framer
Joined
Jul 5, 2005
Messages
948
Steve, those oldies must be diamond point guns, as I don't think the framers points have been around that long. I still occasionally use my old diamond point driver for certain particular situations. I've had to replace various parts on it many times, and have gotten them from United, or from older, broken drivers I saved to rob for parts. I could rebuild one of those in my sleep.
:popc: Rick
Rick, these "oldies" are not diamond point guns. These are the black Framemaster that shoots standard framers points. (although you can get a Fletcher model that shoos glazier points.) I also have the FlexiMaster that shoots flex points & the MultiMaster that shoots the flexible multi-points. All three models are made by Fletcher & the all are made, pretty much the same except for the carriage that carries the points. Parts for all can be obtained direct from Fletcher.
 

Frances M.

CGF II, Certified Grumble Framer Level 2
Joined
Apr 10, 2006
Messages
344
Frances,

Every January, I spend a week in Atlanta at the Gift Market....If you are game and come into town, I'd be glad to put one of these together....and most important show you how to do this yourself! :D

As good as video and manuals may be...there is NOTHING like one-on-one training.

John
John,
That's a great offer! If I haven't solved the problem I may take you up on it. Any idea why Fletcher doesn't seem to have any repair instructions? The whole thing started with a brand-new Framemaster push plate stuck so even if i got it back together I wonder if it would even work right. Thanks again for your help!
 

tedh

SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God
Joined
Nov 7, 2005
Messages
11,538
2019 Update:
- checked on the Fletcher site, and still no instructions on how to replace part on the Framemaster.

Larry’s site has the diagram, but not the repair instructions. So there are still no instructions on repairing a Framemaster. Rats.
 
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