Thursday, January 13, 2011

Military Sword Shadowbox

When framing objects, we want to treat them with care and mount them in such a way that is aesthetically pleasing and structurally sound. We also do not want to harm the objects in any way by using glues or any other irreversible methods. For this project, I chose crimping wire and wooden dowels (wrapped with suede) to support the weight of the sword, leather belt, and sheath. The next two pictures below demonstrate how I used crimping wire. Notice the side view of the suede matboard glued to a black acrylic backing for extra stability. Holes were pre-drilled and the wire fed through to the back to be crimped tight.

Using the crimp tool.

Wooden dowels were used to support the sword, which were wrapped with the same suede by peeling off the fabric layer from the matboard.

Holes were pre-drilled in the dowel and screwed from underneath.

Here the sheath and belt are wired in and the dowels secured.

The sword is placed on the dowels, notice that on the blade a dowel was placed on the top and bottom to form a tight fit. Finally, the sword handle and tassle were wired in as well.

A close-up of the handle...

...and the blade.

Next, the glass was cut and placed in the frame. We are using Museum Glass, that has an anti-reflective coating to minimize glare almost entirely. This glass also filters 98% of UV rays to preserve the fabric and items from fading. Shadowbox sides were made with the same suede matboard, cut at the appropriate depth and glued to a piece of 1/8" acid free foam core to keep the glass in place. These sides were then glued to the inner side of the frame with a tight fit. The final step is cleaning the entire project. The glass is cleaned and polished and dust specks removed from the suede backing. This step is tedious and time consuming but well worth the effort.

The final product, looking quite spiffy! The frame has a gold design that accents the fine work on the belt buckle and sword handle. The back has a paper dust cover and a hanging device (wall-buddies in this project). Thank you! -Russell

1 comment:

pk said...

Super job -- very professional -- looks great!