Over the last several years, I've had plenty of questions about
the design, suggestions for improvement, etc. I've tried to list
the most common questions below. The categories are modifications,
clarifications and general
Q. Do you have plans for a smaller easel?
I don't have anything specific. However, you could
easily modify my plans to be shorter and narrower with some simple
adjustments. If you only need to reduce the size by a little bit,
cut the center support piece of the main supports down to the same
length as the main supports. If that isn't enough, remove some of
the length from the top of the main supports--you can safely and
easily remove length all the way down to the middle crossmember.
This allows you to cut about 25" off the total height, and
still maintain the ability to secure huge paintings.
Others have asked about making it much smaller.
You could modifiy the design to accept smaller diameter lumber (i.e
smaller than 2x4's). If I had a complete woodworking shop I might
have done this myself--the motivation for 2x4's was to make it simple,
inexpensive and easy. If you do decide to use smaller diameter lumber,
please keep in mind that you will have to adjust nearly all of the
dimensions in the measured diagrams.
Q. Can your plan be modified to work as a wall-mount
This modification would be relatively easy, and
simpler and less expensive than building the whole thing. Don't
build the base or rear supports. Instead of attaching the bottom
of the main support to the base, attach it to some 2x4 studs mounted
to the wall (sticking out from the wall enough to clear the rear
of the easel shelf). Do something similar at the point where the
rear supports meet the upper cross-member.
Q. Have you ever modified the plans to work
for watercolor (i.e. flat)?
I haven't. However, you could cut the main support
in half and add hinges halfway up, allowing you to adjust the top
of the main support into a horizontal position. Haven't tried it,
but it might work.
Q. Could I use a different wood, i.e. oak,
birch, poplar, maple, etc.?
Of course. Don't let me restrict your choices.
I specify pine 2x4's because they are cheap and readily available.
A nice hardwood is undoubtedly a good choice of material. However,
that said, I will say that my pine easels have held up just fine
Q. Are there any other modifications I should
Plenty, and they are all listed on the gallery
page as they are modifications by others who have built an easel
from my design. I encourage you to check out that page for more
Q. Will the easel support go straight up and
down (i.e. for pastel work)?
No problem on the straight up and down. It will
do that. Mine will even
adjust a bit forward of 90 degress. This is dependent on the exact
placement of the lag screws in the top rear supports and the length
position of the slot in the bottom rear supports (all adjustable
to your needs).
Q. What is the total height of the easel?
The total height of the easel as listed in the
plans is 7'5" when the main support is perpendicular to the
Q. Do you have a metric version of the plans?
Unfortunately I don't have the measurements in
metric. However, perhaps
you could use an online converter, such as:
to ease things for you? Unfortunately, as an American
that grew up in the
only civilized country to hang onto our archaic measurement system,
what I am most familiar and comfortable with. If anyone wants to
modify the plans with metric measurements and send them to me, I'd
be happy to post them here (with full credit, of course).
Q. What would it cost to have a carpenter build
this for me?
Depends on the carpenter, but at least one person
I know of has done this and it cost them $200 total.
Q. Are [german,french,spanish,etc.] translations
Not from me for sure, but please use Google's
Translator if you need it.
Q. Why did you put this information up for
free? Don't you know you could make some money doing this?
See my answer to this on the author
Q. What time of year do you get the most feedback?
About a year or two ago I started seeing the trend
of increased feedback and questions around the winter holiday season--many
people seem to build these as gifts.
Proceed to the plans,
resources, or gallery.