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Old 09-21-2011, 07:19 PM   #1
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The Arch is complete


(scroll to the bottom to see it textured and painted)

Height: 7'4", width: 7'1"
Took 3 days to frame and drywall - now I need to mud and texture.
No - it was not easy. Will I do it again? Probably not. But I wanted one so I made one.





To make the arched part of the doorway: I hung a sheet of ply from the ceiling and traced the squared-door opening onto it. Then I was able to remove this sheet, carried that outside - and drew the shape of the arch onto one-half of it using a 1" wide reed that came off of an old set of venetian-blinds (wood). This was reasonably flexible - yet not too stiff and shaped a curve quite nicely.

I used this sketched arch as a template to make vertical struts of 2x4 - using the curve drawn on thy plywood to transfer the angles to the 2x4's and set the skill saw accordingly (my miter saw died) - this made things more time consuming but still got the job done.

Then I carefully transferred these cut 2x4's to the rough cut opening per precise measurements.

On the underside of these I adhered 1/4" plywood that was shaped using a wet-method that I'd like to name "too lazy to shape in a steam box so I wet it down and then cooked it with a blow-dryer" (I'd like to thank the academy) - which worked great. As it relaxed I was able to tighten screws all along each piece to get it to hug to the 2x4 struts.

I let this dry.

Then I dry-walled - the only tricky part here was cutting the curved underpiece. I cut that to the needed width and every 2" I scored the back - if this was bending wood this would be a kerf-cut method. I then applied a layer of mud to the ply to act as a temporary adhesive so I could apply the scored pieces of drywall and attach it all with a bounty of screws.

tada - done. So simple!

The center of the arch - you know, I should have KNOWN this was going to happen: the illusion of it sagging. It's *not* actually sagging - it's perfectly flat and level there. But! With the springers (curved portion of the arch) and so on in place it makes it look like it's sagging. When I mud and texture I'll take care of this false sense of imperfection. The Greeks learned this, too - and thus the Parthenon is 'perfectly imperfect' But I promise - it's not actually falling down. It just looks like it from some angles.

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Last edited by Snav; 09-27-2011 at 04:14 PM.
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Old 09-21-2011, 07:39 PM   #2
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The Arch is complete


A little late to say this, but there is an easier way. You had the right idea with the plywood. Use a piece for each side and infill between with 2x4's following the curve. Then use 1/4" drywall to follow the curve. The radius of the curve can be easily calculated with a construction calculator or an online calculator. If you know the length, and the total height, the calculator will give you the radius.

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Old 09-21-2011, 07:54 PM   #3
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The Arch is complete


Yes - that would have been easier. But that would have required me to borrow my dad's truck and drive into town for a sheet of plywood.

I just didn't feel like it.

Somehow - when I'm lazy - things get more tedious. Total woman for ya.
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Old 09-21-2011, 08:20 PM   #4
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The Arch is complete


Nice! Looking forward to seeing it finished.
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Old 09-21-2011, 08:22 PM   #5
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The Arch is complete


Painted is what I meant, if you're painting.
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Old 09-21-2011, 08:26 PM   #6
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The Arch is complete


I've seen that done on hgtv. It takes work so nice job.
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Old 09-27-2011, 03:09 PM   #7
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The Arch is complete


Ok - room is textured and painted (well, almost done being painted). I hate the yellow (my husband's color of choice) but whatever - I'm not the interior decorating type - that's all on him. I just do the work.

And as you can see I sculpted the center upward by removing the drywall in this area and evening it out with mud before adding the bead trim. So it's more 'flat' in appearance - not perfect, but much better - no serious sag illusion.



The arch looks better now that it's been tidied up and polished off.

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