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  1. #1
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    ben swift's Avatar


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    Default restretch a wood frame process tutorial - ghetto staples technique

    This is one way to restretch a wood framed screen. This is the way I do it when in a pinch.

    This should only take about 20 minutes to do once you get comfortable with the process, and only costs as much as the screen fabric (and your precious time). If you are familiar with stretching canvas, this is basically the same idea. Your hands will probably be sore after doing a couple of these.

    Supplies:
    You need your old frame, cleaned up and old screen removed, some new screen material, a stapler, lots of staples, a hammer (to hammer down staples that don't go in all the way), and some scissors. (and beer)


    Cut your screen fabric to make sure it will fit.


    You'll need a bit to hang off the edges, enough to grip on and pull.


    OK - now for the actual stretching.

    The first thing you want to do is make sure the screen fabric is lined up, and we're going to tack the screen to the center points of the four sides of the frame to form a cross, this helps establish our basic stretch, and anchors it so the fabric doesn't get skewed all over the place.


    First: tack the side away from you


    Then: near you



    then the other two, I go left to right...


    And now you have your cross, the screen should be a bit taught in the center but have a lot of slack in the 4 quadrants.



    "How do you stretch it to maintain a uniform tension, without skewing the fabric too much?" you must be asking. Well, the way you do that is to start at your stretch center-points and move outward to the corners. Do this on one half of one side at a time, rotating the screen as you go. I usually go with the top right half of the side and work clockwise, you can do whatever you want.


    once you have completed those sections, turn around and go the other way, making sure that the fabric is evenly tensioned across the whole frame.


    Work your way toward the corners, pulling the tension with you. You want to makee sure that you're not pulling one side so much that the other side loses out, try to balance the tension between the sides.





    if you're lucky, after a few "practice" frames, you will end up with a screen that has pretty even tension across the whole mesh, from side to side and corner to corner!


    cut off the extra screen fabric around the edges and hammer down those pesky staples that didn't want to go in.


    now you have a fresh screen that is ready to print!


    I recommend cleaning the screen with a degreaser before you coat it since your dirty greasy mits have been all over it.

    Good luck, and keep it metal.
    ♥ Ben
    benswift.com - nonoart.com - eyeskull.com - me on facebook
    "ben swift hates fun." - Robbie Fuct
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  2. #2
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    The Bubble Process's Avatar


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    woah man that ruled! thanks for the info.
    I always want to feel this way! —Sean Higgins
    the bubble process

  3. #3
    squeegeethree's Avatar

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    Default

    Good thread. I remember the old days when I did this. I had to make my screens all from scratch. Rip the wood, use a bead etc. Sometimes wetting the screen helps with the stretching. Next time you can use those screen trimmings to protect your good screen from the staples. Just put a strip over the screen along the edge before stapling.
    This is a great way to use up mesh from larger screens that have ripped.
    Thanks Ben.

  4. #4
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    NeroInferno's Avatar


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    hi squeegeethree,
    sorry but i haven't understood.

    ..with a strip you mean common adhesive?

    ..with edge you mean the "bottom" surface of the frame, that's in contact with the table, or the edge-edge where the mesh "changes" direction?

    ..why a strip should help the screen from the staples? in my experience the frames i've are rounded on the edges, and the staples are positioned on the side and not on the bottom of the screens.

    however thanks ben swift for the tutorial, i'll try next time to mount the mesh using your tecnique

    Thanks,
    Fabio (screenfeticist)

  5. #5
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    ben swift's Avatar


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    Quote Originally Posted by squeegeethree View Post
    Sometimes wetting the screen helps with the stretching. Next time you can use those screen trimmings to protect your good screen from the staples. Just put a strip over the screen along the edge before stapling.
    Good tips- I will have to try them next time. As for the screen trimmings- that's a great idea, I usually just toss them out!
    ♥ Ben
    benswift.com - nonoart.com - eyeskull.com - me on facebook
    "ben swift hates fun." - Robbie Fuct
    "ben is hella white" - mrblonde

  6. #6
    micro's Avatar

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    sweet Ben!

    i will second squeegeethree on the trimmings as a layer between the mesh and the frame for stapling, in school we used a roll of nylon ribbon instead. it also gives you a nice straight guide to staple into. and then when you need to change the mesh, you can just pull the nylon ribbon and all the old staples come right out with it..

    i would also add that you should always staple at an angle (/) and not this way (-) or this way (|) that way your stapling two point on two different "planes" of the mesh and not one. less likely to rip.
    Last edited by micro; 05-10-2008 at 08:22 AM.

  7. #7
    andydiesel's Avatar

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    a long long time ago in another universe i welded some angle iron that was about 8" long on to a pair of vice grips. i had grip tape on the angle iron so it would grip the mesh tight. it ruled i could get a stapled screen so tight it was insane. I also used that fabric staple tape too.

  8. #8
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    ben swift's Avatar


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    Quote Originally Posted by micro View Post
    i would also add that you should always staple at an angle (/) and not this way (-) or this way (|) that way your stapling two point on two different "planes" of the mesh and not one. less likely to rip.
    another great tip! I was a bit haphazard on this one as you can see..
    ♥ Ben
    benswift.com - nonoart.com - eyeskull.com - me on facebook
    "ben swift hates fun." - Robbie Fuct
    "ben is hella white" - mrblonde

  9. #9
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    Andymac's Avatar

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    Looking at this thread brought back warm memories - of 1957.

    Friends don't let friends print with stapled screens....
    Andymac

    services www.squeegeeville.com
    equipment www.tmiscreenprinting.com

    Todo es empezar.

  10. #10
    andydiesel's Avatar

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    Quote Originally Posted by Andymac View Post
    Looking at this thread brought back warm memories - of 1957.

    Friends don't let friends print with stapled screens....
    i totally agree.

    but they do work.

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