DIY Project Ceiling Mount

January 20, 2009

When I first picked up my projector, I just slapped a shelf up on the wall at about the right height and left it at that. Pretty ugly, but worked great.  After we moved into the new house, a shelf wasn’t an option.  Quality mounts run $100 – $300… ouch.  So I ordered a cheap $15 mount from Monoprice while I figured out plan B.

The Monoprice mount worked okay, but:

  1. it was a pain to adjust
  2. shook the projector when people walked around above
  3. sagged so I had to realign it all the time.

Time for that “Plan B”… so I spent some time with my white board, SketchUp, and looking at other mounts to see what they were doing.

Most mounts have only one point of support and articulation, which doesn’t even line up with the projector’s CG (center of gravity).  This means you’ll always have some image shake if there ‘s any up-down movement.  And the alignment system for almost all mounts I saw were of the “Line it up, tighten it down, and hope it doesn’t shift or you’ll have to repeat the guessing game” variety.

I knew I wanted something solid that I could line up nearly pixel-perfect and wouldn’t ever sag, so I went for a “tripod” support scheme. Two turnbuckles at the front for adjustment, and a solid “leg” at the back for the third point (you could make this a turnbuckle as well if you need more adjustment room).  This would give very controlled pitch and roll adjustment for the projector, and since everything is perfectly balanced, there’s nothing to tighten down or sag over time.  The other upside is that it’s a piece of cake to detach the projector; just unscrew the rear coupling nut, and then lift it off the turnbuckle hooks. No second person or tools needed, which means much less chance of dropping your ‘spensive projector in the process.

Anyway, enough talk – here’s what I came up with:

Plan B

Plan B


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