Need bit of advice. I am making a custom mirror frame to match a vanity
I made earlier in the summer. I have the concept down of building a
pitcure frame to hold the glass with a rabbet from the back but I am looking
for ways to hold the mirror in the rabbet -- first thought is to use
silicone caulk as a glue but I am wondering if I need some sort of
mechanical means to hold the mirror in the rabbet (in addition or instead of
the glue/caulk). Of course the mirror will be hung from the frame .....
If it's a square frame then it is a simple matter of making some backing
strips of wood that matches the frame. Use silicone on both sides of the
mirror, and then put the wood strips so that they sit flush with the back of
the frame. Make them rectangular, with the shorter dimension going vertical
onto the mirror. Bevel the outer inside edge and drive pin nails into the
frame to secure the strips. I've done this several times when putting glass
into projects (cabinets, clocks, etc.) and it really looks better than
anything else I've seen. For a mirror, where noone will likely see the
back, there might be other ways to do it, although this approach isn't very
The standard method is to use glazing points (just ask for them at the
hardware store, they should have 'em anywhere) and then use a glazing
compound to seal and hold the mirror in place. Easy to do, even for a
beginner- the glazing points just press in with a flathead screwdriver
or putty knife, and the glazing compund is applied just like caulk.
Are you sure about what you are saying concerning Mirrors? I just posted
pics of a curio cabinet that has a 2 mirrored back. My local glass supplier
indicated that most any sealant adhesive or glue that comes in contact with
the mirror back can damage the mirror backing. Also if using glazing points
you could scratch the back plating on the mirror.
I went with my own 1/4" rounds and brad nailed them in.
You could be right, of course. I've done a lot of windows like this,
but only 2 or 3 mirrors. In all cases, everything worked out just
fine, but I didn't do any mirrors until after I had replaced the glass
in about 3 dozen windows, so I may have just had the right touch when
it came to putting in the points. Honestly, it's been long enough
that I don't even really remember whether I used glazing compund or
not with the mirrors, so it's possible the stuff could wreck the back
of a mirror (Though I remember it being ok IIRC- it could be that the
product I used had a different chemical composition than some others)
Obviously, standard advice applies here- test in a hidden area before
using anything in the final project!
(Though I remember it being ok IIRC- it could be that the
Just to clarify that a bit more, I was under the impression that the damage
to the plating could be over a period of time. Testing may not be long
enough unless you let the test go for a year or 2.
Perhaps a piece of mirror with several possible compounds used for a long
I use a backing board, same as for picture framing. Small brads hold
the board in place. The backer may be hardboard (masonite), or for
better work (especially with big mirrors) it's hardboard with a layer
or artist's grey mounting board on the inside.
If you have moisture movement problem in the frame, you can twist and
crack a big mirror. A soft mounting board interlayer helps avoid this.
Don't use silicone caulk near mirrors. It releases acid when it cures
and that damages the silvering. Use either electronics-grade
(low-acid) silicone, or a special mirror-mounting mastic (cheaper).
I mad my own 1/4 rounds and brad nailed them in. My glass supplier strongly
advised against using any type of adhesive or sealant for mounting a mirror.
Apparently these compounds will damage the mirror plating if they get on the
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