Chalk board

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I'm building an art easel for my daughter. I got the plans from New Yankee Workshop. On the show he says he got the chalkboard from a school supplier. However I've called every one in town and none of them carry unframed chalkboard. Does anyone have any ideas of where to find some at a reasonable price? I need two pieces about 2'x3'. Thanks
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<<I'm building an art easel for my daughter. I got the plans from New Yankee Workshop. On the show he says he got the chalkboard from a school supplier. However I've called every one in town and none of them carry unframed chalkboard. Does anyone have any ideas of where to find some at a reasonable price? I need two pieces about 2'x3'.>>
Two thoughts: if the frames on the framed ones aren't too fancy, buy a couple of those and knock the frames off. Or get some 1/2" MDF and paint it with chalkboard paint.
Lee
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On Wed, 18 Jan 2006 15:13:43 -0500, "Lee Gordon"

I did exactly that, with exactly the same easel with excellent results.
One board is a white board, made from Home Depot purchased material, the other board is tempered hardboard spray-primed flat black and then sprayed with chalkboard paint
Read the plan carefully before building. There are several opportunities to improve the project without undue work.
I put a nice routed edge on the drawer face, dovetailed the inner drawer added a second "chalk tray / brush holder", ran a bead around the frames and used leftover curly maple plywood for the bin and drawer bottoms. Even if you skip the dovetails, you can jazz it up!
Barry
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shantz wrote:

I can't offer a supplier. But, presuming you can't find it have you considered using chalkboard paint?
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On the show Norm says that he tried the paint and has issues getting a smooth surface to write on. I'm just about at that point though. I was just hoping to get the real thing.
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Shantz, Office Depot sells these things. They have 2'x3' chalk boards for $22 (item number 624775 ) (though this direct link may work as well: http://www.officedepot.com/ddSKU.do?level=SK&idb4775&&An=browse ).
The online sites I saw had similar prices, but shipping was obscene, so a local office supply place may be your best bet.
You might be able to get a decent one free if your local school district is phasing out chalk boards in lieu of whiteboards.
-Nathan
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Well, I'm past 50, and the "real thing" was already out of use by the time I got in school. But if you insist on authenticity, buttress your easel and go to a billiard supply house and see if they can cut some slate thin enough for the weight to be acceptable while being thick enough not to be brittle. <g>
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I'm not saying I need slate. What Norm uses on show is hardboard with a factory applied cloat of the chalk board paint.
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Apart from the obvious, slate doesn't actually work too well.
"School chalk" (from my time at school) is very soft and is optimised for writing on a painted or rubber roller blackboard. If you try to use it to write on real slate than gives a broad line and crumbles. To write on genuine slate, use welder's chalk. This is a long stick about 1/2" wide and 1/8" thick. It's actually steatite (more like talc) than chalk and is a bit harder.
Welder's chalk is cheap (although it comes in a huge quantity) and is handy in any workshop. It writes on stone, red hot steel and can even be carved to make signets for sealing wax.
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I could have sworn I just saw some sheets of chalkboard (maybe 3x4 feet, 1/4" thick) at Home Depot the other day. It might have been Chase Pitkin (our local version of the same thing), but take a close look around your local home center. Andy
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Wed, Jan 18, 2006, 12:43pm (EST-3) snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com (shantz) who stateth: On the show Norm says that he tried the paint and has issues getting a smooth surface to write on. I'm just about at that point though. I was just hoping to get the real thing.
Issues? Not to disparage Norm, I think he's great, however, this is a guy that nails everything, "Just until the glue sets". You give a kid some chalk, and he/she will be perfectly happy drawing on a concrete block wall. So, don't worry about the chalkboard paint not being "smoth".
And, it's always considered good form to reference the post/sender you're responding to.
JOAT If you can't say anything nice about someone, you must be talking about Hilary Clinton.
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shantz wrote:

Spray it. Both primers and the actual paint are available in spray bombs at just about any BORG.
Barry
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Have you considered a whiteboard for dry-erase markers?

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We consideered dry erase but the markers stain so easily, we decided to stick with chalk.
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If thinking of slate, ratehr than paint, you might try localschool boards. They sometimes have some left over from demolished schools. I found some that way, but use it for sharpening chisels. They gave it to me, but times they are a changin'.
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Then maybe I'll have to eat my words. I thought that slate had been phased out in favor of manufactured materials and coatings long ago.
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In my time at school the better blackboards had a glass sheet (or was it hard clear plastic?) with a satinized surface, as you get by sandblasting or etching (dont try etching glass at home...) over a dark background, sometimes with squares on for math problems, lines for writing of musical notes, and because the lines were under the glass they never were washed off..
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On Wed, 18 Jan 2006 22:26:29 +0100, Juergen Hannappel
I etched glass at home as a kid, back in the '70s, with some twee little crafts kit.
There is _NO_ way I would use those same chemicals today, now I know what they are !
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Most office supply stores carry them and I could swear I saw them at WalMart not long ago and I know Target has them. Possibly some of the crafts stores too like Michaels or Hobby Lobby. John
shantz wrote:

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On Wed, 18 Jan 2006 12:08:28 -0800, shantz wrote:

I saw 48 x 32 inch sheets at my local Lowes just the other day. Look at the cut sheet goods. I found white board and chalk board. It looks like it would be easy, however, to use chalk board paint on a piece of tempered hard board.
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