Expert advice

Choosing the right canvas stretcher bars

The Estonian family-owned company has been manufacturing stretcher bars for more than a quarter of a century

Kenover Puit, one of the leading stretcher bar manufacturers, shares its expert advice on choosing the best material for canvas stretcher bars to ensure the longevity of printed canvas jobs.

Types of wood for stretcher bars

  • For softwood options, pine or spruce are popular choices.
  • Lightweight, durable, and easily workable, pine is known for its versatility, also offering a favourable quality-to-price ratio.
  • Spruce stretcher bars have a softer texture with a uniform grain and clean aesthetic. While lightweight and cost-effective, it may wear out faster than pine.
  • Among hardwood options, aspen stands out for its lightweight yet robust nature, but having a softer composition careful handling is necessary.

Finger-jointed and glulam construction

  • Enhancing wood durability, finger-jointed and glulam (gluing and laminating) techniques offer distinct advantages.
  • Finger-jointed stretcher bars use interlocking fingers, which helps to distribute stress more evenly across the frame, reducing the risk of warping.
  • Glulam stretcher bars bonds multiple wood layers with adhesive giving wood exceptional strength and stability and support for canvas, also making it ideal for larger frames.
  • Finger-jointed and glulam wood combined gives the stretcher bars superior stability, strength, and resistance to ageing.


  • Avoiding knots in wood is advisable to prevent potential warping or aesthetic inconsistencies. Nordic pine, renowned for its density and strength, is recommended for its optimal price-quality ratio.
  • For the utmost durability, opt for knot-free, finger-jointed, glue-laminated wood. This ensures a stable frame for long-lasting printwork preservation.

In conclusion, the choice of wood for stretcher bars significantly impacts the longevity of canvas print jobs.

For further information on Kenover Puit's range of stretcher bars, visit: