Today I put together a detailed step by step guide along with cut lists on how to build and hang a projector screen in the following sizes: 100-inch, 120-inch, 135-inch, 144-inch and 150-inch.

While the video above and guide below walk you through the 144-inch DIY projector screen build, everything for both the smaller and larger screen sizes are basically the same besides the obvious things like material length and the smaller screens not having a need for the center supports.

A few important notes to keep in mind if you choose to build according to my DIY projector screen plans:

1. The final screen size (diagonal) is determined by measuring two opposite inside borders of the felt tape once the frame is built and assembled. In short, the black felt tape border establishes the final screen size.

2. Because my DIY projector plans use the “wrap-around” method, you must use one of Carl’s tension mounted materials i.e…material that has some STRETCH to it. In my build I use Carl’s Flexiwhite.

The hanging cleat may be over-built and overkill for your needs, but I personally like anything hanging from my walls to be over-engineered due to my LOVE for my CHILDREN. They have a tendency to try and hurt themselves, as most kids their age do. Feel free to skip the hanging cleat steps and use any of the aftermarket hardware available for hanging at your own discretion/risk! I swear no one will think you don’t love your kids! …Well actually I can’t swear that…because I don’t know that. In fact I feel like I don’t even know you anymore.


Difficulty:
Beginner


Time Required:
Weekend


Cost:
$150-$250

100'' Screen120'' Screen135'' Screen144'' Screen150'' ScreenTools Req'd

100″ Diagonal (16:9 | 87-3/16″W x 49″H)
Cut List:

Frame:
2 – 1×4 @ 86-3/16″ (top, bottom)
2 – 1×4 @ 55″ (left, right)
Screen Material:
1 – 144″ Carl’s Flexiwhite (Rolled)
Screen Border:
1- 3″ x 60ft Black Felt Tape
Hardware:
2 – Hooks to hang

120″ Diagonal (16:9 | 104-5/8″W x 58-3/4″H)
Cut List:

Frame:
2 – 1×4 @ 103-5/8″ (top, bottom)
2 – 1×4 @ 64-3/4″ (left, right)
2 – 1×4 @ 57-3/4″ (center supports)
1 – 1×4 @ 41-1/2″ (hanging cleat)
Screen Material:
1 – 144″ Carl’s Flexiwhite (Rolled)
Screen Border:
1- 3″ x 60ft Black Felt Tape
Hardware:
4 – L-Brackets (outside corners)
4- T-Brackets (center supports)

135″ Diagonal (16:9 | 117-5/8″W x 66-1/8″H)
Cut List:

Frame:
2 – 1×4 @ 116-5/8″ (top, bottom)
2 – 1×4 @ 72-1/8″ (left, right)
2 – 1×4 @ 65-1/8″ (center supports)
1 – 1×4 @ 45-7/8″ (hanging cleat)
Screen Material:
1 – 175″ Carl’s Flexiwhite (Rolled)
Screen Border:
1- 3″ x 60ft Black Felt Tape
Hardware:
4 – L-Brackets (outside corners)
4- T-Brackets (center supports)

144″ Diagonal (16:9 | 125-1/2″W x 70-5/8″H)
Cut List:

Frame:
2 – 1×4 @ 124-1/2″ (top, bottom)
2 – 1×4 @ 76-5/8″ (left, right)
2 – 1×4 @ 69-5/8″ (center supports)
1 – 1×4 @ 46-1/2″ (hanging cleat)
Screen Material:
1 – 175″ Carl’s Flexiwhite (Rolled)
Screen Border:
1- 3″ x 60ft Black Felt Tape
Hardware:
4 – L-Brackets (outside corners)
4- T-Brackets (center supports)

150″ Diagonal (16:9 | 130-3/4″W x 73-1/2″H)
Cut List:

Frame:
2 – 1×4 @ 129-3/4″ (top, bottom)
2 – 1×4 @ 79-1/2″ (left, right)
2 – 1×4 @ 72-1/2″ (center supports)
1 – 1×4 @ 50-1/4″ (hanging cleat)
Screen Material:
1 – 175″ Carl’s Flexiwhite (Rolled)
Screen Border:
1- 3″ x 60ft Black Felt Tape
Hardware:
4 – L-Brackets (outside corners)
4- T-Brackets (center supports)

Kreg Jig
Clamps
Kreg right angle clamp
Speed Square
Staple gun
Power Drill
Wood Glue
Circular Saw
Miter Box
Miter Saw

*Not sure of the best tools for the job? Check out my article on beginners tools: Tools for New DIYers

A Projector for my Home Theater. FINALLY!

When my buddy first moved out of his mommy’s house (while I was…ahem…still living in MY parents’ basement…), he rented a unit in a brand new condo complex in Camden NJ, the sunshine city. His studio apartment had twenty foot ceilings and this wall that was MADE for a projector screen. If walls had purposes besides you know…being walls, this one’s purpose would without a doubt be to receive projections.

Every time I would hang out at his place I would ask him when he was getting that projector. You know what would look nice on this wall? A projector screen. I can’t believe you have a 32” TV here when you could have TWO HUNDRED INCHES OF PROJECTOR…ING. What a waste, I would say.

Eventually he moved away from that place having never bought a projector or inviting me back ever…again. He only lived there for like 6 months though so don’t be dramatic! We’re still friends!

Well here I am almost eight years later and I finally have a suitable space for a projector. I was putting off the purchase until after I renovate the rest of the house, but received the Optoma HD142X projector as a birthday gift. It’s the perfect budget HD projector to hold me over until 4K prices come down to the peonosphere. After hastily setting-up the projector upon arrival, I finally understood why my good friend never pulled the trigger. PROJECTORS ARE HIGH MAINTENANCE!

While the story of getting to the point of being ready for a projector screen is funny and interesting…it’s also a rather arduous one PROBABLY better suited for another post. So I wanted to take the time today to dig into the process of how to build and hang your very own projector screen. Check out the step by step guide below or the video above to learn how to build and hang a projector screen!

How to Build and Hang a Projector Screen

Cut the Boards to Size

First cut your boards to size according the cut list provided earlier in the post.

Join the Frame

Next, set your Kreg Jig to accommodate 3/4″ material. Clamp and drill pocket holes into both ends of your top, bottom and center support boards.


BOOM!


Layout your boards and prepare to join them!


Use the Kreg right angle clamp to pull the two boards together in preparation for screwing.


Use 1-1/4″ pocket screws to join the first corner of the top board. Clamp and screw the opposite end of the board together.


Now that the top and side boards are connected, join the bottom board to the side boards using 1-1/4″ pocket screws.


Make sure the center supports are centered (duh) by using a tape measure to find your center point is and dividing it between the two supports. Square up the supports by using a speed square.

Next, clamp with the right angle clamp and join the center supports with 1-1/4″ pocket screws.


Repeat on the opposite side of each support piece.


Secure L-Brackets to each of the four corners of the frame.

Secure T-Brackets to both ends of the center support pieces.


Now marvel at your newly joined projector screen frame!

Build the Cleat


I know what most of you are thinking…OH GREAT! A table saw! Well, if you’ve got one, great. Set the blade to 45 degrees and rip a 1×4 straight down the middle to make the cleat.

If you don’t have a table saw, you’ve got a couple of options:

1. Multiple shorter cleats hung at the same height.
Use a compound miter saw set to a 45 degree angled cut on a 1×4.

2. Join a 2×2 and a 1×2 together to form a cleat.
Join the two by pocket screwing through the 1×2 into the 2×2.  Make two of these. One for the wall, one for the frame. (drawing coming soon).


Because of the access door on my wall, I had to put some spacers behind my cleat. But this is the general idea of a simple wall cleat. One side attaches to the wall, the other permanently affixed to the projector screen frame.

Attach the Cleat to the Projector Screen Frame


Measure down off of the top of the frame about 12-16″ and make a mark. Carry the line from end to end using a speed square.


Repeat this on the other side.

I’m using a forstner bit slightly larger than my washers to countersink the screws (so they don’t stick out). If you don’t have a forstner bit you can always just use a bigger drill bit.

Next glue the cleat to the frame.

Finally, pre-drill and screw the cleat into the frame using 1-1/4″ screws.


Creepy.

Attach the Cleat to the Wall

Locate the studs on your wall of choice and transfer the marks onto your wall cleat.


Lag bolt + washer.


Slightly larger forstner bit.


Using the forstner bit, drill two holes where your studs fall to countersink the lag bolt head.


I’ll be using a longer lag screw because of the spacers, but 2-1/2″ to 3″ should work just fine for you.


Pre-drill with a bit slightly smaller than the lag screws we’re using to attach the cleat.


Vacuum the wood chips off of your new carpet using your wife’s favorite vacuum.


Set the drill to drill mode. In other words…FULL POWER!


Insert the drill bit…


and drill through the cleat and into the wall studs.


Remove the drill bit, insert a ratchet bit and set your drill into “LO” mode.


Start one bolt into the wall stud.

Next, check for level and secure the other end of the cleat.

Once the second bolt is secure, finish drilling in the first lag bolt.


LEVEL!

We’re halfway there baby!

Attach Carl’s Flexiwhite Projector Screen Material to the Frame


Here it is! 175″ of Carl’s Flexiwhite alllll rolled up! I prefer the rolled material over the folded so that I don’t have to iron out any lines in the fabric.


Lock and load your staple gun.


Using your wife’s kitchen scissors, cut any excess flexiwhite material and discard(throw away). Don’t tell Rachel.

Apply Felt Tape


Grab your roll of 3″ x 60ft Black Felt Tape.


Lay out and cut a little over what you think you need for each side.


Because I’m fancy, I’m going to miter the corners of the felt tape.

Use an xacto or utility knife to cut the 3″ projector screen felt tape on at a right angle…


and pull it apart.


Make your way around the perimeter of the screen, making sure not to pull or stretch the felt tape. IT WILL SHRINK!


Figure out how you’re going to lift this thing by yourself without hurting the screen (or just ASK SOMEONE FOR HELP!)…and place it on the cleat.


I mean honestly…was there ever really a choice here?

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