Q We have several antique wood frames with various amounts of warp. Can they be straightened?

A Once wood is warped it may be very difficult to get it back in shape, said Dan Gelfand of New Look Refinishing Inc. in Minneapolis. But you can try.

• Remove the picture and glass, leaving the frame empty.

• Lay the frame on its face on a sturdy flat surface.

• Place long and narrow strips of damp (not wet) rags along the back of the frame.

• Put six to eight clamps around the perimeter of the frame, clamping the frame to the flat surface.

• Tighten the clamps once a day, but only a small amount or the frame might break.

• Keep the rags moist.

• Continue this process until the frame is clamped flat. It may take a week or more.

• Once flat, leave the frame clamped for another week without dampening the rags or tightening the clamps.

• Remove the clamps.

• If the frame stays in shape, varnish the back and inside of the frame. Wood that is varnished only on one side tends to warp more easily.

Karen Youso, Fixit Editor

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