Cheap Portable Projector Screen





Introduction: Cheap Portable Projector Screen

I finally decided to upgrade from the sheet I had tacked to my wall. I had a small budget, and wanted to be able to take it down when I wasn't using it and this is what I came up with.

Step 1: Materials

I already had some of the materials, so it cost me less than a dollar, but it could be done for around ten bucks.

You need:
-An old sheet.
I'm sure you could find a cheap one at walmart or goodwill or something.
I got twelve feet at home depot for 75 cents, they even cut it for me.
-Eyelets/ eyelet kit
If you don't already have one, they have the kit at home depot for a couple dollars.
The kind with the little screw on one end.

That's about it. I also picked up a pack of velcro straps at walmart for 2 dollars. I needed them anyway for cord management.

Step 2: Construction

1. Decide what size you want. Mine is 5 feet wide by 6 feet tall.
2. Cut and sew the top and sides. Leave a couple inches extra on each side so you can fold it over and sew a seam.
3. Insert eyelets. One on each side of the top.
4. Sew in pvc pipe. This is to make it hang flat and straight, and to make it easy to roll up and store. Just fold the bottom over the pvc, crease the sheet, take out the pipe and sew all the way across. Then slide the pipe in and sew the sides shut.
5. Put the hooks in your ceiling. I put some in my living room, my bedroom, and another bedroom. They're hardly noticeable so I just leave them up there all the time.

Step 3: Enjoy

Hang it up and enjoy. Whenever you're not using it, just start at the bottom and roll it up, then put the velcro straps around it and put it in a closet or something. As always, thanks for reading.

I thought about cutting the pvc in half and leaving about a two inch gap in the middle so it could be rolled up and folded in half. Whatever works for you.



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um.......sounds good but is there an easier way to do the screen?

Others have recommended a painters drop cloth from Home Depot or Lowes as well.

My friend used blackout curtains for a very nice screen, much better than a sheet. Blackout curtains are the material you put inside light color curtains to make them opaque.

Just a thought, if you put another 75cent piece of pvc along the top, you would have less drape and wrinkle problems.... screen would hang straight.

2 replies

...or failing that, just one or two more grommets at top, in the center, might have the same effect.  Nice work.

Both good ideas. I think I'll be making a 2.0 soon.

I made my projector screen out of an 84 inch white pull down window shade available at Wally World ($8). Mount the support brackets on the wall you want to use and you're ready.

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Wow, I've never seen one that cheap but that's very clever.

I used pure white blackout curtain material. It was supercheap for the my screen (8' by 6' approx). It looks great too, no light shines through (hence the blackout), so there is more reflection. This design seems pretty solid, but I would definitely spring for the blackout curtain. It was a great addition to my Overhead/LCD projector.

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Sounds like a good idea. Where might I buy some?

You can get this at a decorating/design store that sells designer fabrics...ask for blackout liner by the yard;  it is usually 54-55 inches wide. You will have to cut the selvedges off (edges where it was not coated.)  You can use a pencil and a ruler to draw your lines...just know that if you draw a crooked line, you cannot erase it off the fabric. When you cut it, it won't unravel at the raw edges. Take care to make the pocket as straight as humanly possible,  or it will drape unevenly and distort your image. When you store one of these made of blackout, it would be great to  roll it up with some thick white paper, or a scrap piece of white cloth to pad it, leave enough sticking out to tape to itself and serve as a protective will be glad you did,  as this stuff can get permanent wrinkles in it. Also,  when you roll it up,  roll loosely around the PVC,  put some tape around the end that will be "UP" as you store it...this way, it will hang, and you won't get a bolt wrinkle where the fabric slides down until it starts to puddle on the floor. This is a great idea...I never considered the cost of a screen this large...I have two smaller old-fashioned projector screens I use now and then.  I think I will hang onto them after reading this!

Oops, I forgot to add this...there is a woven side, and a matte finish side...I think the matte finish side will give you crisper details in your projected image.  Have fun!

I built my screen out of blackout material too!  Excellent stuff - the quailty was really poor on the thick opaque stuff, so I ended up with the thinnest they had; and it allows some light to transmit through; leaving me with a darker overall image. 

Picked it up at a fabric store (its designed to make drapes)

My friend, with whom i built this, actually picked it up for me, so I'm not sure where he got it. I want to say michaels or bed bath and beyond. It cost less then $10 because it was bulk fabric, but I can't seem to find anything like that on their websites, but this site seems to have some that is affordable.

Looks good.
I'd like to add the following improvements:
.. another bar to stiffen up the top to reduce drooping
.. black edges for sharper contrast, matt ducttape should do the trick

 NIce i need to do something like this i picked up a eyeclops mini projector for 10 bucks at a thrift store so this will come in handy :)