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Building a fixed frame projector screen

This guide provides a straightforward approach to constructing a fixed frame projector screen, a popular DIY project for home theater enthusiasts. Utilising simple materials like wooden beams and a staple gun, this method is one of several to achieve a high-quality screen.

At PSM, we are dedicated to supporting your DIY projector screen projects. Whether you’re looking for a quick review of your plans or need a comprehensive discussion about your specific requirements, don’t hesitate to reach out. We’re here to provide the assistance and guidance you need.

1) Gather Supplies

Tools

  1. Staple Gun
  2. Saw (DIY stores can cut for you)
  3. Screwdriver
  4. Tape Measure

Materials

  1. Staples
  2. Wooden Beams ~ 3″ x 1″
  3. Screws
  4. L & T-Brackets
  5. Sand paper

2) Calculate your frame dimensions

Before purchasing your frame materials, please calculate the height and width of your frame and account for any border you wish to include.

Example: 
If you are building a 120” 16:9 screen with a 2” border tape, the following calculations will be made to calculate your frame size:
  1. Calculate Viewable Size: Using our screen size calculator, input the diagonal length of your desired vieable screen size, for example 120” 16:9 equates to 105” (L) x 59” (H)
  2. Calculate Frame Size: Add dimensions of border tape all round to the length and height of the viewable size: Frame Length = 105” + 2” + 2” = 109” Frame Height = 59” + 2” + 2” = 63”

3) Build your frame

The frame is the foundation to creating a perfectly flat surface to your projector screen. Cut the wooden beams to correct dimensions. For larger front projection screens, you may want to add internal vertical beams for added support and rigidity.

Join beams together with L & T-Brackets to form the frame. Remove any sharp corners of your wooden frame with sand paper to avoid any possibility of tearing the screen fabric when stretching to your frame.

PROTIP: For any internal vertical beam(s), set these back a couple of millimetres from the front face of the screen so that when you wrap your fabric over the frame, the internal vertical beam(s) do not touch the screen fabric otherwise their presence may telegraph through.

PROTIP: Before making final fixings of your beams, check that the two corner-to-corner diagonal lengths are equal to ensure your frame is perfectly in square. If you find your finished frame is slightly out of square or twisted, don’t worry this can be rectified once you fix it to a flat wall.

4) Attach your screen to frame

Before unpacking your projector screen material, please ensure your work area is clean and dust free.

Start by laying the projector screen material face down, then place your frame front-side down on top, as shown in the diagram below:

Fold material around frame. We would recommend starting from the centre of one long side and maintain an even tension as you fix a small section. Then fix the opposite side, giving enough tension to pull the fabric taut but not too much that its tearing at your staples, then gradually work towards the corners maintaining an even tension as you go. You may find you have to re-adjust some staple positions as you go.

5) Attach Border Tape and you’re done!

Border tape can either be applied directly to the screen material or to an external architrave type border.

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