What is Freeside?

Freeside is a Georgia nonprofit corporation, organized to develop a community of coders, makers, artists, and researchers in order to promote collaboration and community outreach. Learn more »

What to Do With a Stack of Picture Frames?

When You Have Too Much Free Stuff!

Our newest member Raul got his hands on a stack of about 40 picture frames that were being junked. On a general note Freeside tends to discourage large piles of objects randomly appearing as it tends to collect in corners. Raul got permission from our projects team with a time limit of a few weeks. In this case unnecessary, as the membership more or less attacked the pile of boxes and rapidly rendered them into things.

Unfortunately starting off all the frames looked something like this:

Not terribly useful. We don't even have any idea who these guys are. After a few passes through the planer, however, we get something like this:

A perfectly good picture frame useful for stuff. First idea was to push a couple of these through a the laser cutter. Concept good, aim.... Aim was a little off. Also we had just rebuilt the laser computer and electronics so there were a couple of kinks to work out in CamBam's post processor:


Instead of getting distracted by that rabbit hole of troubleshooting, though, Nathan, in a process pioneered at Freeside by Mr. Ferguson, took a few frames and burnt some Lichtenberg figures. The actual process is pretty straightforward. Soak some wood in saltwater, hook a microwave oven transformer to the wall up backward, and poke the scary ends into the wood. There's some insulation and other safety jazz that I'll leave to: Google.

The raw frames come out a little (a lot) sooty and salty and need cleaned up:

Sanding and staining, or painting, plus a layer of polyurethane gives these:

But Wait. there's More!

Before the rest of the membership got ahold of those picture frames, Raul had intended on making a stool. We actually had a broken branded stool lying around to use for parts. The next day he was working on putting the stool together. After some disassembly, sanding, nails and whatnot:

A wild stool appears!

The Final Product


Post a Comment