Upcycle Progress: Lichtenberg Vinyl Frame

Hi All,

In this blog post, I’ll be going over some of the progress I’ve made thus far on designing my Lichtenberg vinyl frame. Although I have not physically started constructing my vinyl frame, I’ve made some preliminary designs for the dimensions.

The vinyl album itself is 12 and 7/16″ squared. To size the frame, I decided to have the innermost edge of the frame be 12.25″ with an additional quarter inch cut out of the back to fit the album in, as shown later on. I modeled this in CAD and produced the following rendering of the entire frame.

As you can see, I’m just doing simple 45-degree angles to join the wood together for this frame. Being that the album is square, this means I can make four identical pieces to compose this frame. In order to hold the frame in place, there will be 0.25″x0.125″ cut off of each corner of each of the four pieces. A side view (looking down the 2″x4″ piece of wood, is shown below, where you can see the piece that will be cut out to hold the album.

Once that has been cut out of the four pieces, and I cut a 45-degree angle on both sides of each of the four pieces, the back of the frame should look similar to the rendering below.

Before the assembly of the frame, however, I must drill out a hole in each of the 45-degree-angle faces in order to stick a dowel pin through to connect each of the corners. And, of course, before I do that, I must apply the Lichtenberg pattern on the wood.

I plan on messing around with this technology on scrap pieces of wood before I finalize the pattern that I want to make. As Michael Burns recommended in my first blog post, I want to try to apply a unique pattern of fractals across the wood. By making my own patterns, I will have more control over how the final product should look. In the coming days, I will start experimenting with creating Lichtenberg patterns on wood so that I can see if there’s a desired pattern that would look great on this vinyl frame, ideally matching the aesthetic of the Dark Side of the Moon album that will go into the frame.

I’m excited to start working on this, learning about how the process works for making the Lichtenberg patterns, and get some of the class’ feedback on this!

* All images in this post have been created by myself.

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2 Comments. Leave new

  • I was not super familiar with Lichtenberg by name but after reading your post I do remember really liking this practice a lot. I know you said you were going to experiment with different scraps to try and get the pattern you want, do you know if there’s a more straightforward way of getting specific patterns or is guess and check really the only way? Either way, great progress.

  • Hey Chris,

    This is an awesome project and it looks like you have done good progress on it. I read about fractal burning on wood and although it seemed like a scary process, the patterns formed were amazing. Do you process a Lichtenberg machine or do you plan on making one?


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