I 've been making my own stretched canvases and enjoy it a lot. I also can make them for about half price. I ran into a problem with three canvases that I made the other day, though and need some advice.
The three canvases have lost their tightness. They are still smooth and look good, just not as tight as they were.
I made them using an unprimed 10 ounce cotton duck canvas and Dick Blick Standard stretcher bars. No keys installed yet. When I first made them, they were nice and tight and gave a pleasing drum-like ring when I thumped them.
What I did differently from the past was that after stretching, I wet them thoroughly before priming them and let them air dry. I was thinking that this would tighten them a bit more. It didn't! After drying, they had lost the tightness. Obviously wetting them was a mistake.
I know I can put keys in to re-tighten them, but is there another way to re-tighten them?