Published on December 16th, 2011 | by Jules Yap


Reinforced Ribba

Materials: Ribba

Description: I use a lot of Ribba fames at home, because their ‘oak’ variant matches very well with my oak doorframes. I also appreciate that they come with a pre-cut professional-grade matte that would cost more than the frame to have it done at a shop.

My major disappointment with the series is that their largest frames (the 70×100) use polystyrene instead of glass for the front. On such a large surface the polystyrene looks noticeably wobbly. So I replaced the front with a glass one, only to find out why they use plastic: the suspension system used on the Ribba – with the metal tabs clipped on the hardboard back – is unable to support the weight of a glass front. The hardboard deforms and eventually tears at the points where the clips are attached.

It’s a pity that Ikea chose to use a different front rather than a different hanging system on the large frames, but that won’t stand in the way of intrepid hackers!

I cut some wooden slats to size and glued and stapled them to the frame’s back panel as a reinforcing lattice. For good measure, some L-hooks were screwed on to further secure the back to the actual frame. The Ribba-supplied hanging wire was fixed to the wooden slats.

I’ve done this hack on two frames, one hanging horizontal and one vertical, and they’ve held up well. Personally I feel that my artwork really looks better behind a glass front.

~ Eli, Belgium

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The Author

Jules Yap

"I am Jules, the engine behind IKEAHackers and the one who keeps this site up and running. My mission is to capture all the wonderful, inspiring, clever hacks and ideas for our much loved IKEA items".

6 Responses to Reinforced Ribba

  1. Anonymous says:

    Of course they don’t use glass on the big ones because of the weight of the product.. It would be irresponsibleto do so.. If you are using glass please don’t hang off a wire..

  2. Anonymous says:

    Thanks for the tip!

    I too felt frustrated with the lack of a glass front, especially since I’ve found this fantastic website which supplies beautiful photographic art custom sized to fit IKEA frames. I plan on following your lead changing all my frames now.

    Here’s a return favour of a tip:

    the site’s called http://www.artforikeaframes.com

  3. Anonymous says:

    I’m sorry if this doesn’t turn out to be constructive, but I’ve been looking to shout out my disappointment about that frame in public for years :D
    The Ribba frame I owned was even unable to support the weight of that wobbly polystyrene front! It was bending for about a centimeter in the top middle and the frame deformed to something ovally. Shame on Ikea for building such an unstable frame and for selling it to a price many manufacturers sell really sturdy aluminium frames with real glass front and a much better hanging system! And even more shame on them for letting me argue and fight about half an hour with their support, as I tried to get my money back, even though they saw it with their own eyes, as I took that frame back to Ikea.

    The point is: You are spending money for wood, metal braces and even a real glass front to give that frame the functionality and quality Ikea was supposed to deliver in the first place! It’s like buying an expensive chair manufactured specially for obese people and having to build a wooden seating surface for it by yourself, because the manufacturer’s own one is made of rice paper! :D
    In my opinion, you didn’t gave an Object an creative new use, you repaired it! :D

    None the less, you did it well ;)

  4. collector says:

    I also found the perspex at the front of the larger frames a problem. Glass is so much better! Thanks for the hack.

  5. Anonymous says:

    I like how it turned out that the matte hides the big letters they used as filler for the sides of that print. I had to cut out a bit of the matte at the top and bottom for the print to fit. This is intimidating at first because the machine-made cuts are so perfect and precise, but the truth is once the picture is framed nobody is going to focus on the matte cuts, looking for imperfections… ;)

    (I didn’t post a photo of the horizontally hung frame because the art contains nudity)

  6. OMG~~~~ I am going to frame the SAME print when I buy my RIBBA! I Also have the 2 smaller ones to make the triptych. So glad to know this print works well with the frame. And thanks for the HACK!

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