Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Building a Show Easel

These are very cool easels with zip setup time. They cost a bit so I decided to just build one. I have seen them so all I did was just roughly sketch it out and guess at the angle. I purchased 1"x4" oak at Home Depot for $30.00, 2 brass hinges, 4 Shaker pegs to hold 2 paintings and 4 padded feet. I also bought some dowels for the corner of the wood strips and some gel epoxy glue with 1000lb pull strength.

I tapered all the wood strips on a table saw, drilled the holes for the dowels and then mixed the epoxy gluing the two halves together. I let them dry overnight and then sanded a radius on all the edges which gives it a nice rounded edge to grab when carrying. I drilled holes for the pegs, the feet pads and then screwed in the hinges. When all of that was done I rubbed it with a wax/sealer which brings out the beauty of the oak.

It will hold two paintings, looks cool and is easy to setup...and cost very little. It's a great indoor easel and will look good in my house too.

2 pcs cut at 5"6 and one pc for the floor strips.

The wood is tapered and then ready for the dowels and epoxy.

I used a rubber "stop" to set how far down I drilled the holes for the dowels. I used these metal pcs with points in the drilled holes, put the two pcs together and it marks where I need to drill on the other piece of wood. Drill all holes, fill with epoxy insert dowels and put them together.

After sanding, this is what the corners will look like...note the footpads installed.

Here it is all oiled up ready for the art. You can see the Shaker pegs for holding the framed artwork. The two brass hinges go at the very top and at the very bottom in back. A very simple easel to build.
Here it is in the house with 2 paintings. The wood looks great with a natural oak finish protected with the oil rubbed into it. The feet are screwed in and allow for adjusting to uneven surfaces. Right now, the Shaker pegs can be pulled out to very the positions of paintings but I might just go ahead and glue them in place. I know a lady who mentioned she had lost a peg because they kept popping out. We'll see.


Teresa said...

Very Cool Ron! I've been looking to buy these and they are pricey! This is just what I need - thanks for sharing!

Ron Guthrie said...

Hi Teresa, Yeah, my eyes popped out when I found these being sold online too....hence, I bought the lumber and cut away. Actually, it was pretty easy to build it. If you have a table saw and a chop saw it really makes it easy but you can still make one of these with basic hand tools.
I'm in the middle of making a smaller second one from the scraps of the first one and making some canvas-covered masonite panels. Spending more time in the garage than the studio lately...

Anonymous said...

Hi Again Ron,

This looks neat. With a little more bracing, a means to fix it to the floor and maybe some more adjustment holes for pegs, it might also make a pretty good 'studio-easel'.

Are you a woodworker too, btw?


Ron Guthrie said...

Hi John,
The Artist Guild I'm in was planning on doing some shows at the Grange hall so I decided to build this easel to hang 2 paintings.

I'm not a woodworker by trade. My Dad always liked working with wood and I took wood classes in High School. It's just something I do when I don't have the money to buy something, hahaha. I've seen these easels online for over $125 and it only cost me about $30 for the oak used here. I do love working with wood though but I am nowhere near the ability of professional woodworkers...those guys would do circles around me.

Thanks for the comments John.

Stephanie Conrad said...

I absolutely love this. I have a gallery coming up and I have started to build several of my own for my show. I love having some freestanding Art rather than just typical wall displays! Thank you for sharing!

Ron Guthrie said...

Hi Stephanie,
Thanks for checking this out. I use this easel at a lot of our guild shows and it still looks as good as the day I built it. It gets a lot of comments and one of these days I will make another one. It was a great project to work on.