Affordable Outdoor Movie Screen for under $50

Picture of Affordable Outdoor Movie Screen for under $50
Down here in Texas we don’t get a lot of pleasant outdoor weather that doesn’t include hungry, mammoth-sized insects.  When Fall and Winter come around we try to make the most of it.

This instructable will show you how to make a quality, affordable, stowable, movie screen for outdoor viewing—for under $50!

Things to note.

1. This is NOT a free-standing screen frame.  It mounts on the wall of your house or garage. I used the wall of my house that is on the patio as I have 16+ feet between the screen and yard which produces a sufficient sized picture. 

2. This will achieve a screen height of 4 feet.  Beyond that size, you are special ordering cloth or would need to stitch two pieces together.   The former is expensive; the latter, sloppy-looking.

Step 1: Materials


• (1) 1 3/8” wooden dowel @ 96” length (approximately $12)
• (1) sheet of blackout cloth from fabric store.  It comes at 4.5 ft. width, and I had it cut to 9 ft. overall.  ($20)
• (2)  1 ¼” wood screws ($0.30)
• (2) small “D-ring” picture frame hanging hooks
• 26 ft. of non-shock absorbing cord, trotline or similar.  I used ¼” cord for the stays and trotline for the center support (about 1 ft. of it).
• (1) Bostitch grommet kit (includes punch tool, washers, grommets, and flange tool)
• (3) 1 ¼” screws and plastic anchors suitable for brick (or wood as your case may be)
• Level
• Drill with masonry bits (I used 1/8 as a pilot and ¼ to widen appropriately for the anchors)
• Scissors
• Sewing machine
• Pencil
• Straight edge
• Straight pins

Below is an image of the D-rings used.
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Cats Science Club made it!3 months ago

We used some of your ideas and others to build our own.

We had a great time outside with this screen! Very cool to see it showing a movie. We also set up Photo Booth. Kids took pictures of themselves on the big screen.