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antoniodominion
03-10-2018, 03:59 AM
Hello Everyone!
:-)

I am trying to create a good support for my acrylic paintings. Paramount to me is that it be archival, which to me means that it is not unreasonable to expect for it to have a life of at least 100 years.

I wanted to purchase (or make) canvas panels where the canvas or linen is adhered to Dibond, or similar type of material (ACP panels) with an archival heat activated adhesive like Beva 371, which I have seen on YouTube and read about on the Internet. Nevertheless, this seemed like too much of an investments just to start with so I was investigating starting off by making my own canvas over MDF panels.

Following is the list of steps that I came up with for making the canvas over MDF panels. As you can probably figure out from all the steps, I want to have the canvas actually stretched over the panel as opposed to just having it glued on. But then I also want to have that adhesive so that it maintains direct contact with the panel throughout its life.

However, now it seems like I’m making everything just a little too complicated and so I think I will start off by just purchasing a well-known or well regarded canvas panel. Everyone talks about them like they are **** “cardboard” and not worth putting paint on. That was what I was trying to avoid in making them myself.

So, here are the steps in draft form, meaning that this is just my first attempt at coming up with a method for making stretched canvas adhered to panels. I would appreciate any thoughts or input on my methodology.

Step by Step Making Canvas Panels
1. Purchase 6 mm MDF Panel
2. Purchase sealant to seal MDF panels
3. Purchase 2.5 mm Beva 371 adhesive film
4. Purchase Cricut Heat Press Device or larger, commercial heat Press, if so desired (optional as a household iron will probably work)
5. Purchase electric stapler
6. Purchase 5-6 mm stainless steel staples
7. Purchase cotton canvas or linen fabric
8. Have the 4 x 8 foot MDF panel cut to desired sizes
9. Seal the front, back, and sides of the panels with ?
10. Cut the fabric to match the panel sizes + 3 inches (to allow 1.5 inch overlap on the back in which to staple)
11. Cut the Beva film in sizes that match the panels
12. Tack the Beva film onto the MDF Panels
13. Stretch the fabric over the MDF as you would if using stretcher bars, stapling on the back
14. Heat the front of the panel to activate the Beva film (150°F for 5 minutes)
15. Size your canvas or linen with ?
16. Gesso your canvas or linen as desired

Thank you very much for your kindest consideration of my question! I look forward to hearing back from you, and I will await your reply.

Best regards,

~Antonio :)

contumacious
03-10-2018, 05:41 AM
My comments are in blue within your text. Certainly not the only way to do it, but they are based on my own experience which has worked well for me. You may want to try several variations before you decide on "the one" for a bunch of panels.

Consider ACM Panels
Unless I want a gallery wrap look, my favorite type of rigid support for canvas is ACM Panels/ generic Dibond with the canvas glued or heat mounted to the surface and trimmed flush at the edges. 3mm ACM works great up to 16x20 with no bracing needed with 4mm until you get pretty big. I pay $40 (Not the $120 they ask for Dibond) US for a 4x8 3mm ACM panel, $13 for a 5/16 tempered hardboard. Cutting ACM panels to size only requires a craft knife, straight edge and some clamps. The cost is 3 times that of 5/16" tempered hardboard, but the results are superior. No warping, no priming needed, no cradles needed until you go HUGE, no worries about it breaking down over time. When you think about the cost of the canvas plus your time involved, the ACM panel seems well worth it to me.

That being said, I do like the idea of stretching the canvas around your panel then heat mounting it for making gallery wrap rigid support panels. That should give you a really smooth and nice looking wrap. You will likely need cross bracing in the middle even on smaller panels to push back against the heat mounting press if you end up using one. I am assuming you will be using cradled panels so you will have something to staple into. Stapling without cradles isn't going to work very will unless you are working really thick (thicker than 6mm) panels. Consider simply mounting the canvas to the panel, then trimming if you don't feel the need for an exposed edge gallery wrap. If you will be framing them, there is no need for a gallery wrap.

If you do choose gallery wrapping, you might look at pre-made cradled panels faced with tempered hardboard or birch plywood, unless you have the tools and skill to make your own cradled panels. They will be less money than a premade rigid backing gallery wrap panel.


Hello Everyone!
:-)

I am trying to create a good support for my acrylic paintings. Paramount to me is that it be archival, which to me means that it is not unreasonable to expect for it to have a life of at least 100 years.

I wanted to purchase (or make) canvas panels where the canvas or linen is adhered to Dibond, or similar type of material (ACP panels) with an archival heat activated adhesive like Beva 371, which I have seen on YouTube and read about on the Internet. Nevertheless, this seemed like too much of an investments just to start with so I was investigating starting off by making my own canvas over MDF panels.

Following is the list of steps that I came up with for making the canvas over MDF panels. As you can probably figure out from all the steps, I want to have the canvas actually stretched over the panel as opposed to just having it glued on. But then I also want to have that adhesive so that it maintains direct contact with the panel throughout its life.

However, now it seems like I’m making everything just a little too complicated and so I think I will start off by just purchasing a well-known or well regarded canvas panel. Everyone talks about them like they are **** “cardboard” and not worth putting paint on. That was what I was trying to avoid in making them myself.

So, here are the steps in draft form, meaning that this is just my first attempt at coming up with a method for making stretched canvas adhered to panels. I would appreciate any thoughts or input on my methodology.

Step by Step Making Canvas Panels
1. Purchase 6 mm MDF Panel
I would not use MDF. It is too fragile, too thick and too heavy when compared to tempered hardboard aka Masonite or Birch plywood.
2. Purchase sealant to seal MDF panels
3. Purchase 2.5 mm Beva 371 adhesive film
4. Purchase Cricut Heat Press Device or larger, commercial heat Press,You do not need a heat mounting press if you use the Beva 371 liquid but the heat method will be easier if you plan to do stapled gallery wraps. if so desired (optional as a household iron will probably work)
A heat mounting press that can handle the largest size you will want to do is very nice to work with using the Beva 371 film or equivalent, but as noted already, no heat is necessary if you use the Beva liquid or some other liquid adhesive for non stretched applications.
5. Purchase electric stapler Not needed or wanted unless you are also using solid wood cradles and definitely want to staple the canvas.
6. Purchase 5-6 mm stainless steel staples The staples shouldn't be much longer than 1/2 the thickness of what you are stapling them into. With a 6mm panel, a 3mm staple might be too short for a good hold plus with MDF or tempered hardboard the staples may cause break through to the other side causing bumps that will show on your canvas.
7. Purchase cotton canvas or linen fabric
If you are using raw fabric, you can size and size and prime the canvas AFTER it has been adhered to the sealed panel. I never size/ prime before rigid support mounting.
8. Have the 4 x 8 foot MDF panel cut to desired sizes You can do your own cutting with a small blade diameter (3" to 5 1/2") lightweight electric or battery powered saw, a straight edge and some clamps. Big saws are sometimes harder to handle with this type of cutting.
9. Seal the front, back, and sides of the panels with ? Several good products for this. Acrylic mediums, shellac, various primers from Bullseye, Rustoleum and more. I would not recommend rabbit skin glue. Oil based primers will reduce warping during the application process but make sure they are compatible with your ground.
10. Cut the fabric to match the panel sizes + 3 inches (to allow 1.5 inch overlap on the back in which to staple)
If you choose to cut flush, you won't need more than 1" larger.
11. Cut the Beva film in sizes that match the panels
12. Tack the Beva film onto the MDF Panels
13. Stretch the fabric over the MDF as you would if using stretcher bars, stapling on the back Staples often do not work well on MDF, hardboard or Dibond. On MDF it can crack, plus it has to be quite a bit thicker than the length of the staples. 6mm MDF won't work with staples without cradles. If you aren't using cradles, the odds of damaging the 6mm MDF or Hardboard are pretty high with staples even if it is thick enough for them. If you definitely want to stretch and staple the canvas rather than simply wrapping and gluing it around the back with a liquid adhesive, you need to be stapling into solid wood (cradle boards). Additionally with larger pieces you will need cradles, otherwise the panel is going to warp, particularly if you stretch the canvas. Adding cradles plus 6mm MDF means a very heavy package. Tempered hardboard, Dibond or Baltic Birch plywood will be less prone to breaking and lighter. 1/8" hardboard or plywood will work if cradled, as will 3mm Dibond / ACM panel. If you don't want cradles then gluing the wrapped canvas around to the back is probably your only option. For larger Dibond / ACM panels that are uncradled I would go with 4mm or 6mm. You will need to experiment to find what works best for you.
14. Heat the front of the panel to activate the Beva film (150°F for 5 minutes)
If you use the liquid Beva you won't have to deal with the heat, but you probably won't have enough time to stretch the canvas before it dries, so the heat method would probably be best if you are stretching the canvas in a gallery wrap.
15. Size your canvas or linen with ?
PVA, GAC100, GAC400, acrylic medium, clear gesso or just go straight to regular white acrylic gesso. I prefer scrubbing in a size first.
16. Gesso your canvas or linen as desired

Thank you very much for your kindest consideration of my question! I look forward to hearing back from you, and I will await your reply.

Best regards,

~Antonio :)

cliff.kachinske
03-10-2018, 09:21 AM
I always like to get the shrinkage out of the canvas before I mount it to a panel because I've had cases where the canvas curls the panel, cradled or not.

I staple the canvas to 3/4 inch plywood, seal it with gloss medium thinned 2:1 with distilled water, then apply gesso. Staples every two inches. To get an idea of the shrinkage involved, make a straight pencil line just inside the staples and check it after sealing and gesso.

contumacious
03-10-2018, 01:48 PM
I always like to get the shrinkage out of the canvas before I mount it to a panel because I've had cases where the canvas curls the panel, cradled or not.

I staple the canvas to 3/4 inch plywood, seal it with gloss medium thinned 2:1 with distilled water, then apply gesso. Staples every two inches. To get an idea of the shrinkage involved, make a straight pencil line just inside the staples and check it after sealing and gesso.

Thanks for bringing this up. I apologize for missing this in my first post. I don't prime a lot of canvas so the process is not in the "good part" of my aging memory. Particularly with larger panels, stretching before priming is pretty much a necessity even if it is temporary and the canvas will be mounted to a rigid support later. Another point to remember is that if you prime it un-stretched you will likely have other problems as well with buckling and curling. I have never had any 9x12 panels warp when I primed the raw canvas dry mounted on the ACM panel, but bigger stuff definitely can curl a LOT, even warping 6mm ACM panels.

ddattler
03-14-2018, 09:53 PM
I've always used lightly sanded Hardboard (Masonite) as a panel to mount my canvas on. I've never experienced bleeding, shrinking, warping or separation. I use a good heavy bodied gloss medium as an adhesive with a pre-gessoed canvas. I flatten it down with a piece of 3/4" plywood with a piece of wax paper in between to prevent gluing the plywood to the canvas. All weighed down with books or other heavy objects. Trim off the excess canvas with a knife after dried overnight. I've been painting for almost 50 years. I have paintings by one of my late friends on Masonite from the 1950s that are all in perfect condition.

Colorado_Ed
03-15-2018, 12:28 PM
Another vote on hardboard (used to be called Masonite) instead of MDF.

MDF is really fragile and super heavy at large sizes.