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View Full Version : Best miter joint for a picture frame?



runway1
04-10-2004, 06:51 PM
I'm thinking that a biscuit joint is the best type for a picture frame mitered corner. Am I on the right track?

If I'm good here, what type of router bit is best? I see three wing cutters, slot cutters and slot/rabbet bits. Which would be the best cutter to go with? I'm thinking I want a bit that I can vary the position on the shank. That way I can adapt to different wood thicknesses - right? Thanks all.

daddo
04-10-2004, 08:51 PM
I too would like to see the answere on this one, as I have never used the bisquit joint stuff. I have always just glued my frame joints and have had good success so far, but if a bisquit is easy and stronger,I might try it.
I've heard that a "pocket hole" works as good too.

deathwish2
04-10-2004, 09:53 PM
A biscuit will NOT add any more strength than any other joint. What it will do is aid in alignment while you glue up.

As to which is best? The best is the one that pleases you!

You can do biscuits or pocket screws as mentioned already, you can use dowel pegs, exposed wooden splines with a contrasting wood can be visually appealing. If you have a router table, you could even use 'cope and stick' joints like what would be used on a raised panel cabinet door. Depending on your tools and skills, you could do a half-lapped miter . . . or a full half-lap joint. You could even use what the 'commercial' frame shops use . . . little metal clips (fancy staples).

You can pretty much make it as simple or complex as you want.

Sawduster
04-11-2004, 12:03 PM
The strength of any joint is dependent upon the long grain glue surface. For a miter, my bet would be a half lap miter joint for strength.

bob_r
04-11-2004, 02:13 PM
Mark,

I believe biscuits would add strength to a miter joint, much like a spline. A normal miter without any special joinery would be gluing end grain to end grain and a biscuit would add long grain to long grain so it would add some strength to the joint.

When gluing boards together (long grain to long grain), I agree with you that they only help with alignment.

Bob R

runway1
04-11-2004, 02:37 PM
Thanks all, I understand the strength issues. What about a cutter for the biscuit slot? I'll be using my router. Thanks again!

BradTheDog
04-11-2004, 06:20 PM
je best way to sure a miterd picture frame corner is a propper framing wedge.

pgeer
04-13-2004, 07:25 AM
>Mark,
>
>I believe biscuits would add strength to a miter joint, much
>like a spline. A normal miter without any special joinery
>would be gluing end grain to end grain and a biscuit would
>add long grain to long grain so it would add some strength
>to the joint.
>

I agree with Bob on this one.

>When gluing boards together (long grain to long grain), I
>agree with you that they only help with alignment.

And I'll take it further, any amount of wood you put across the joint will add some strength but to say none I think is way off.



Paul

six24
04-15-2004, 11:21 AM
Rockler sells a biscuit cutter bit set for the router. It comes with three different bearings so you can use #0, #10 and 20 biscuits and sells for $30.
http://www.rockler.com/ecom7/product_details.cfm?&offerings_id=10329&objectgroup_id=551&catid=78&filter=biscuit%20cutter

I have one myself and it works okay, though it took a little getting used to lining it up. I've since bought a biscuit cutter.

Darrin O
04-17-2004, 12:14 AM
I think the biscuit would be the easiest/fastest. The spline miter would be nearly as fast after you set up a jig to do it on your ts or router table, and as was said, be visually appealing.

Doing miters for picture frames on a ts or a miter saw isnt always as easy as it seems. by having four mitered corners with any width to the frame you invite compounded errors. It might even warrant setting up a miter jig/shooting board, to fine trim the miters to get joints to your satisfaction. if you dont have problems getting them right on your ts or miter saw, then good for you! I know i tried it once and it didnt turn out well for me. but then again, a lot of things i try ONCE dont turn out that well. Only after i try them several times do they start to look good.

Enjoy your project!!!

Darrin
"Ever notice how good enough, is usually neither good nor enough?"