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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Tool: Dewalt 82829 15' band clamp
Reviewer: bill edgington
Tool Rating: 10

- lets preface this review by saying I hate making picture frames. Only as a last resort will I agree to make one.

- having said that, I have your usual selection of many clamps of various sizes, some big band box ratchet clamps (cabinet boxes) and an assortment of smaller specialty clamps. I have no clamps that are really suitable for easily making picture frames.

- I recently had a requirement to make some frames that were 4 1/2" square overall and dreaded even trying to get them clamped. Enter the Dewalt 83839 band clamp. I love this thing. Its dead easy to use, tensions easily with precision and can be adjusted and re-adjusted simply by twisting the handle. It has two flip-lock cams to set the overall length of the band and the tension in the band is then taken up or released simply by using the handle. Need more band, flip the lock, feed some more band, lock it down and then tighten the band with the handle while fiddling with the frame. It is adjustable from about a 2" sq to say about 3' x 4' <limited by the provided strap to 15'>. I have not noticed any marks in the frame from the corner brackets but I expect that you could dent soft wood if you went all gorilla on tightening it.

- if you are stuck with making occasional picture frames you may want to consider adding one of these to your kit. I paid less than 20$ for it at my local big orange box store and highly recommend it. I can also see it may have some use for small boxes and who knows what all ......

- ebill

https://www.homedepot.com/p/DEWALT-15-ft-Band-Clamp-DWHT83839/303418630
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I'm curious about how you cut and prep your frames?
- step 1 > try not to get coerced into making frames !

- if step 1 fails, my tools would seem like a cave man method compared to yours. I have an old Craftsman double bevel miter saw. It has been tuned via a Wixey gauge to be dead on. Don't trust the factory as even a .0x" off will make your joints fussy. I also have a good Freud blade in it for 'fuzzy-less' (tech term <g>) and super clean cuts. Aside from that, nothing special. But I have learned that if your pieces are not the exact same length <sq frame> or the same for sides and same for top/btm <rectangular frame> you are not going to have joints that match up.

- I normally keep fussing with it until the do all match and I don't need filler or at worst a little sawdust and glue wipe on the joint. I have a PC profile sander which I can use as necessary but try to make mostly simple profile frames from material I normally rout to fit the purpose and hand sand. I like the idea of splines but have never attempted them.

- we probably have some amongst this group that have mastered frames and maybe we can get some more "frame making" input ?

- ebill
 
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