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Wax On, Wax Off?

shayla

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Apr 5, 2008
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We color the ends of some frame legs, either with wood-colored pens or Prismacolor pencils. We also like to hide the join line in the corner as much as possible, so sometimes use Amaco corner fillers. I sometimes wonder if filler will stay in the pencil-colored corners over the long haul. On one hand, two waxy things might glom on to each other; on the other, they might repel. So, do you think the wax (putty?) will eventually separate, due to the pencil wax, or that it's more likely to adhere?

(And if your frames never need any work in the corners, congratulations. Ours look very good, but we still do this.)
 

David Hewitt

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Feb 26, 2009
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The putty pressed in the crevices will be sufficient. Years later it may separate from expansion, contraction, and shrinkage, but all would be slight, and a slight repute will fix. We putty everything, as it then becomes lets say a closed corner frame. The Mohawk Hard Waxes are great for blending ornate corners.( Pat Murphey has them)
 

David Waldmann

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Well first off, no - our frames never need any work on the the corner. Well, except maybe on whites. Or...

Getting back to the real question, I would suggest markers for the ends and then CJ or CC paste for any gaps. I don't see two dissimilar wax type products coexisting for 13 millennia (just guessing at what your warranty period is).
 

wvframer

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I have been very impressed with the CJ & CC pastes. They are very quick and in most cases do a better job than the wax based fillers.

For those really special frames, the Mohawk hard waxes or the lacquer based burn-in kits will make a nearly closed corner frame. But it is much more labor-intensive.
 

shayla

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Well first off, no - our frames never need any work on the the corner. Well, except maybe on whites. Or...

Getting back to the real question, I would suggest markers for the ends and then CJ or CC paste for any gaps. I don't see two dissimilar wax type products coexisting for 13 millennia (just guessing at what your warranty period is).
12.7 millenia.

After that, all bets are off.
 
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nikodeumus

MGF, Master Grumble Framer
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Apr 21, 2015
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580
I also "paint" the edges of cut mitres before joining.
I use touch up markers, it absorbs into the wood, rather than leaving a waxy coating.

I've wondered about what the Amaco filler will do over many many years myself.
Shrinkage? Expansion?

I checked out the CJ paste others mentioned.
Yet again, another awesome product not available in Canada. SIGH :confused:
 

shayla

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From a search, it looks like those are tube pastes. Do you always have to mix to get the right color? We use Amaco fillers, with a wee dowel that's pointy on one end, flat on the other. I'm happy with the results, but every now and then, we do have one that's a hard match. It's always nice to have more options.

An aside: Both Studio and LJ now have white finishes that perfectly match Amaco white. I don't know if this was intentional, but if so, it was very smart. White is tricky, and so great to have an easy match.
 

wvframer

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The pastes work so well and mix so easily that I use them more often than anything else these days.

I also have some liquid pigments that I have mixed into them to get a perfect match. These liquid pigments mix well with other putties too.
 

framah

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Mar 15, 2001
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8,811
When coloring the miter, sometimes it's not about matching the finish color exactly but more like toning it down so the bright wood doesn't show.
There are times when a very light warm gray does the job.

As for the fillers, I took one of those swing clips that you use to hold stuff in when you want to take it out every so often, and I filed and sanded the end of it so it is really smooth with no possible metal edges to scrape the finish and wrapped a bit of tape on the other end to hold onto it.
Nice thing is you can wipe it off and it's ready to go for the next time.

It makes a really good tool for pulling a bit out of the can as well as a mixer for blending fillers to make the color you need. I use a small piece of glass as my easel for the mixing.
 
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nikodeumus

MGF, Master Grumble Framer
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Apr 21, 2015
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580
I have a pretty good collection of Amaco fillers.
Enough that I can mix to match pretty much any colour of moulding.
f01.jpg

I mix on scraps of mat board, I have a few dozen custom mixed colours ready to use in a moment.
Hard to see in the photo below, but most of these are labelled with the specific moulding it was mixed for.
Ie: "Cascade Glacier Blue", or "Lisbon Aged Honey".
If I find that one works with a different moulding, I just scribble it on the board as well.
Some of these work with 3/4 or more mouldings. Some I've mixed once and never used again.

f02.jpg

I use the pointy end (but not sharp) of these little wooden sticks below for application if needed.
These came from my father who is a woodworker. I think they are used for glue spreading? Not sure where he got them.
Most of the time just using fingers works fine for me.
f03.jpg

I use a metal framing spring clip to mix and blend.
The springy-ness provides good pressure to smoosh the waxes together.
Several strokes in one direction, then back the other way.
Then turn the spreader on it's side to use the edge to scrape the spread mixture back up into a ball.
Repeat smooshing until well blended.
It's easy to add just a little bit of a particular base colour to get the exact custom colour I'm after.
f04.jpg

Yes, it takes up time.
BUT I usually only have to make a mixture once and it lasts for a long time (depending on how much I mix).
So in the long run, I think I save myself time, not mixing each time I need a custom colour.
I haven't gotten to the point where I keep records of the exact mixture recipes to get repeatable results.
That is way too organized for me.
 

snafu

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Mar 2, 2003
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I also have some liquid pigments that I have mixed into them to get a perfect match. These liquid pigments mix well with other putties too.
ditto on the liquid pigments, I use it with elmers wood filler.
I also have an old coffee cup warmer that I use to heat wax filler or beeswax for that moulding with a beeswax finish, wax a lot easier to mix when it's warm.
 

shayla

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Love this conversation.

I was taught to mix the filler in the tin lid. The inside of each lid is like a tiny pallet. This thread is a good reminder to be open to new ways, even with longtime habits. :)
 

nikodeumus

MGF, Master Grumble Framer
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Apr 21, 2015
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ditto on the liquid pigments, I use it with elmers wood filler.
I also have an old coffee cup warmer that I use to heat wax filler or beeswax for that moulding with a beeswax finish, wax a lot easier to mix when it's warm.
What kind of pigment do you use?
I did a quick G**gle search for "liquid pigment".
Most of the hits are for Resin Pigments and almost all very bright rainbow colours.
 
Beauty, Brawn, and Brains: Wizard Z1 CMC

wvframer

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ditto on the liquid pigments, I use it with elmers wood filler.
I also have an old coffee cup warmer that I use to heat wax filler or beeswax for that moulding with a beeswax finish, wax a lot easier to mix when it's warm.
That is just brilliant. I have one of those thing lying around but never thought to use it that way. I have a 60 watt light bulb in an old that leans over my wax filler and that softens them some.
 

snafu

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Mar 2, 2003
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What kind of pigment do you use?
I did a quick G**gle search for "liquid pigment".
Most of the hits are for Resin Pigments and almost all very bright rainbow colours.
I use Createx pure pigment https://createxcolors.com/purepigment.html
I've tried other brands but Createx is very concentrated. I also use this pigment to make daubers I've found that grey and taupe colors come in handy, you can get empty daubers on dickblick.com
 

wvframer

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The Createx is what I use. Somebody mentioned them on the G a few years ago and I thought they would be fun if not useful. They have proven to be both.
 

Echobelly

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Nov 7, 2019
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Larson/Juhl carry touch up markers in about every shade of wood and even bright colors for enameled frames. We have a large selection and I always use them on the cut ends of frames before joining. It cuts down on the use of the wax filler.
 

David Waldmann

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Interesting that no one brought up the best way to reduce the need for coloring ends or fillers - good miters and good joining techniques.

I feel we have some of the best in the business, but even still, unless you are doing finished corners, there will always be that profile/finish that won't look perfect without some finessing.

Black and White are the worst, with White edging out for the win almost always. The CC/CJ paste works awesome on "white".
 
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nikodeumus

MGF, Master Grumble Framer
Joined
Apr 21, 2015
Messages
580
Interesting that no one brought up the best way to reduce the need for coloring ends or fillers - good miters and good joining techniques.
Yes, that would be ideal. I would love it if I never had to do any edge colouring, or use fillers.
But unfortunately, those dang frame gremlins find a way to make things difficult for me. :confused:
Thanks to all the G members sharing knowledge (like this thread) I am continually making improvements to my work.
I have new mitre blades, and a high quality (I hope?) vice to play with next time I'm in the shop.
Those should improve my corners significantly.:D
 
Vermont Hardwoods solid wood picture frame molding
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