How To Make A Projection Screen


Materials and Tools Needed

Before starting your project to make a projection screen, it’s important to gather all the necessary materials and tools. Here is a list of items you will need:


  • Projection screen fabric
  • Wooden frame
  • Staples or adhesive tape
  • Support braces
  • Screws
  • Paint or stain (optional)


  • Measuring tape
  • Saw
  • Screwdriver
  • Staple gun or adhesive tape dispenser
  • Paintbrush (if you decide to paint or stain the frame)

When choosing the projection screen fabric, make sure to select a material that is specifically designed for optimum image quality and clarity. Look for a fabric that has a high gain factor and provides wide viewing angles. There are various options available in the market, such as vinyl, PVC, or fiberglass-based materials. Consider the size of your projection screen and the ambient light conditions in the viewing area when selecting the fabric.

The wooden frame is a crucial component of the projection screen. You can use standard 2×2 lumber or any other appropriate-sized wooden boards. Make sure the wood is smooth and free from splinters to avoid any damage to the fabric. If desired, you can paint or stain the frame to match your room’s decor.

Support braces are essential for stability and to prevent warping. Use additional pieces of lumber to reinforce the frame structure. These braces should be placed strategically along the sides and corners of the frame, ensuring that it remains sturdy and rigid.

Aside from the materials, you will need a set of basic tools to complete the project. A measuring tape will help you accurately measure the size of the frame and fabric. A saw will be needed to cut the wooden boards to the desired lengths. A screwdriver will be necessary to attach the support braces and secure the frame. You can use either a staple gun or adhesive tape dispenser to fix the fabric onto the frame securely. If you decide to paint or stain the frame, a paintbrush will be required.

Now that you have gathered all the necessary materials and tools, you are ready to proceed with the construction of your projection screen. The next sections will guide you through each step of the process.

Choosing the Right Fabric

When it comes to making a projection screen, selecting the right fabric is crucial for achieving optimal image quality. The choice of fabric can significantly affect the brightness, contrast, and overall viewing experience. Here are some key factors to consider when choosing the right fabric for your DIY projection screen:

Gain Factor:

The gain factor of a projection screen fabric determines how much light is reflected back to the audience. A higher gain factor indicates that more light is reflected, resulting in a brighter image. However, a higher gain may also lead to narrower viewing angles and potential hotspots. Conversely, a lower gain factor will provide wider viewing angles but with a decrease in brightness. Consider your viewing environment and the desired level of brightness when selecting the fabric.

Viewing Angle:

The viewing angle refers to the range at which viewers can see the projected image clearly. Some fabrics have wider viewing angles, allowing for better visibility from various seating positions. If you have a larger audience or a wider seating arrangement, it is advisable to choose a fabric that offers a broader viewing angle to ensure everyone has an optimal viewing experience.

Ambient Light Conditions:

The amount of ambient light in the room can impact the projection screen’s performance. If you have a dedicated home theater or a room with good light control, you can opt for a fabric with a higher gain factor. However, if you have a brightly lit room or anticipate a significant amount of ambient light, consider a fabric with a lower gain to minimize glare and retain image quality.

Material and Construction:

Projection screen fabrics are available in various materials such as vinyl, PVC, or fiberglass-based materials. These materials differ in terms of their durability, flexibility, and image clarity. Depending on your budget and specific requirements, choose a fabric that offers good tensile strength, minimal wrinkles, and excellent color reproduction to ensure a high-quality viewing experience.

Size and Aspect Ratio:

Consider the size and aspect ratio of your projection screen when selecting the fabric. Ensure that the fabric is wide enough and has the appropriate aspect ratio to match the dimensions of your frame. You can find fabric rolls of different widths in the market, allowing you to choose the one that fits your screen perfectly.

By considering these factors, you can make an informed decision and choose the right fabric that suits your needs and provides an immersive viewing experience. Once you have selected the fabric, it’s time to move on to the next step – measuring and cutting the frame.

Measuring and Cutting the Frame

Now that you have chosen the fabric for your projection screen, it’s time to move on to the next step: measuring and cutting the frame. This step is crucial to ensure that your projection screen fits perfectly and provides a seamless viewing experience. Here’s how to measure and cut the frame:

1. Determine the Screen Size:

Decide on the desired size of your projection screen. Consider the available space in your room and the viewing distance from the screen. It’s recommended to follow the standard aspect ratio of 16:9 or 16:10 for widescreen projections. Measure the width and height of the desired screen size.

2. Mark the Measurements:

Using a measuring tape, mark the measurements of the width and height on the wooden boards that will form the frame. Take into account the thickness of the boards when measuring.

3. Cut the Boards:

Using a saw, carefully cut the wooden boards according to the measurements you marked. Ensure that the cuts are precise and straight for a clean and professional look. Take your time and double-check the measurements to avoid any errors.

4. Check the Fit:

Once the boards are cut, assemble them to check the fit. Make sure the corners are aligned properly and the frame is square. Adjust the cuts if needed to ensure a snug fit without any gaps or overlaps.

5. Sand the Edges:

After cutting the boards, sand the edges to remove any roughness or splinters. This will prevent any potential damage to the fabric during the assembly process and give the frame a polished appearance.

Remember, precision is key when measuring and cutting the frame. Take your time to ensure accurate measurements and clean cuts. By following these steps, you will be one step closer to creating your own DIY projection screen. The next section will guide you through assembling the frame.

Assembling the Frame

With the frame cut to the desired size, it’s time to assemble the different components and create the structure for your projection screen. Here are the steps to help you assemble the frame:

1. Lay Out the Boards:

Start by laying out the four cut wooden boards in the correct position, forming a rectangle or square shape depending on your screen size and aspect ratio.

2. Align the Corners:

Ensure that the corners of the frame are properly aligned. To double-check the alignment, use a carpenter’s square or a measuring tape to ensure that the corners create right angles.

3. Attach the Corners:

Secure the corners by using screws or nails. It’s recommended to pre-drill pilot holes to prevent the wood from splitting. Attach one screw or nail per corner to hold the frame together firmly.

4. Check for Stability:

Once the corners are attached, check the stability of the frame. Wiggle it gently to see if there is any movement or if it feels loose. If necessary, reinforce the corners with additional screws or nails to ensure a sturdy and rigid frame.

5. Measure Diagonally:

Measure the diagonal distances between opposite corners of the frame. The measurements should be equal, indicating that the frame is square. If the measurements differ, adjust the frame by applying gentle pressure until the measurements match.

6. Check Frame Alignment:

Verify that all four sides of the frame are straight and aligned. Adjust if needed by applying pressure to straighten any curves or misalignments.

7. Paint or Stain (Optional):

If you want to enhance the appearance of the frame, you can choose to paint or stain it. Apply a coat of paint or stain evenly, following the manufacturer’s instructions. Allow it to dry completely before proceeding to the next step.

By following these steps, you will assemble a strong and stable wooden frame for your projection screen. With the frame complete, you are ready to move on to the next step – adding support braces to ensure long-lasting durability.

Adding Support Braces

To ensure the stability and durability of your projection screen, it is important to add support braces to the frame. These braces will help distribute the weight evenly and prevent warping or sagging over time. Here are the steps to adding support braces:

1. Determine Brace Placement:

Study the size and shape of your frame to identify the areas that may require additional support. Typically, support braces are placed along the longer sides of the frame and sometimes along the center of the shorter sides.

2. Measure and Cut Braces:

Using a measuring tape, determine the length of each brace required to span the desired distance between the frame’s sides. Cut the braces from the same type of wood used for the frame, ensuring they are the correct size for the intended placement.

3. Position the Braces:

Place the cut support braces along the designated areas, ensuring they are positioned flush against the frame. Double-check the alignment and adjust the braces as needed to ensure a snug fit.

4. Attach the Braces:

Attach the support braces to the frame using screws or nails. It is advisable to pre-drill pilot holes in the braces to prevent splitting. Start by attaching one end of the brace to the frame, then secure the other end. Add additional screws or nails as necessary to create a secure connection.

5. Reinforce the Braces:

To further strengthen the support braces, you can add additional supports between the sides and the brace. These can be smaller pieces of wood attached at an angle or perpendicular to the brace, providing additional rigidity to the frame.

6. Check Stability:

Once all the support braces are attached, check the stability of the frame. Apply gentle pressure to the frame and observe if there is any noticeable movement or flexing. If needed, add more screws or nails to reinforce any areas that feel weak or unstable.

7. Sand and Finish (Optional):

If desired, sand the support braces to smoothen any rough edges. You can also choose to paint or stain the braces to match the rest of the frame or give it a distinct appearance. Ensure proper ventilation and follow the manufacturer’s instructions when applying any finishes.

By following these steps, you will add the necessary support braces to your projection screen frame, ensuring its long-lasting stability and durability. The next section will guide you through the process of attaching the fabric to the frame.

Attaching the Fabric to the Frame

Now that you have assembled the frame and added support braces, it’s time to attach the fabric to create the projection surface. Properly securing the fabric will ensure a smooth and taut screen for an optimal viewing experience. Here are the steps to attach the fabric to the frame:

1. Lay out the Fabric:

Start by laying out the projection screen fabric on a clean and flat surface. Ensure that the fabric is large enough to cover the entire frame with some extra allowance on each side.

2. Position the Frame:

Place the assembled frame on top of the fabric, making sure it is centered and aligned. Leave a space between the frame and the edges of the fabric to allow for folding and securing.

3. Fold and Secure:

Begin with one side of the fabric and fold it over the frame, ensuring it is taut. Use staples or adhesive tape to secure the fabric to the backside of the frame. Start at one corner and work your way towards the opposite corner, pulling the fabric gently to remove any wrinkles or sagging.

4. Repeat for Remaining Sides:

Continue the process of folding and securing the fabric for the remaining three sides, one at a time. Pull the fabric tightly to ensure a smooth and wrinkle-free surface. Make sure to maintain the alignment of the fabric and adjust if necessary.

5. Trim Excess Fabric:

Once all sides are secured, trim any excess fabric using scissors or a sharp utility knife. Be careful not to cut too close to the staples or tape, ensuring that the fabric remains tightly secured to the frame.

6. Check for Tension:

Check the tension of the fabric by gently tapping the projected surface. It should feel firm and not sag or ripple. If you notice any areas that are not taut, reposition the fabric and readjust the securing method to achieve the desired tension.

7. Inspect the Completed Screen:

Inspect the front and back of the projection screen to ensure the fabric is evenly stretched and properly fastened. Look for any loose areas or wrinkles that may affect the image quality, and address them accordingly.

By following these steps, you will successfully attach the fabric to the frame, creating a smooth and taut projection screen surface. The next section will guide you through the process of mounting your newly created projection screen.

Mounting the Projection Screen

With the projection screen fully assembled, it’s time to mount it in your desired location. Proper mounting ensures stability and allows for optimal viewing angles. Here are the steps to successfully mount your projection screen:

1. Choose the Mounting Location:

Select a suitable location for mounting the projection screen. Consider factors such as the viewing distance, room layout, and available wall space. Ensure that the location provides a clear line of sight for all viewers.

2. Prepare the Mounting Surface:

Ensure that the mounting surface is clean, flat, and sturdy. Remove any protruding objects or obstructions that may interfere with the installation or affect the image quality. If needed, use a level to ensure the surface is perfectly horizontal.

3. Mark the Mounting Points:

Hold the projection screen against the mounting surface at the desired height and position. Mark the locations for the mounting brackets or screws. Use a level to ensure the screen is straight and aligned.

4. Install the Mounting Hardware:

Depending on the type of mounting hardware, follow the manufacturer’s instructions to install the brackets or screws securely. Ensure that they are firmly attached to the wall or ceiling and can support the weight of the projection screen.

5. Hang the Projection Screen:

Carefully lift the projection screen and hang it onto the installed mounting brackets or screws. Make sure it is properly aligned and securely attached. Double-check that the screen is at the desired height and angle for optimal viewing.

6. Test and Adjust:

Once the projection screen is mounted, test it by projecting an image and adjust as needed. Ensure that the screen is level, flat, and free from any wrinkles or distortions. Make any necessary adjustments to the screen or projector to achieve the best image quality.

7. Cable Management:

Take the time to organize and secure any cables running from the projector to the screen. Use cable management solutions such as hooks, clips, or cable channels to keep them neat and hidden, enhancing the overall aesthetic of the installation.

By following these steps, you will successfully mount your projection screen, allowing for an immersive viewing experience. Now you can enjoy movies, presentations, or gaming on your DIY projection screen.