I have long said that you can always save money in any project/home studio by building what would normally be expensive things like desks, etc. yourself. Sound proofing panels are no exception.
The first thing that you want to think about is the size of the panel you are wanting to make. I chose 4′ x 2′ just to make the measurements simple. I started by buying an 8′ 1″ x 2″ board. (the better the quality wood, the easier and more solid the panel will be). I cut the board in to (2) 4′ sections and (2) 2′ sections.
I attached the sections with the 4′ pieces on the outside and with 2 wood screws on each and to keep the boards from twisting.
Then once I have my outside frame, I grabbed the cheap mattress foam and cut it to size. You want the foam to sit right in side the frame snugly.
From this point you will want to attach a cross bar to make sure that the foam stays in place once your panel is complete. Again use a 2′ section for this.
Once this is done, you can now start covering your panel. I chose to cover mine with some inexpensive velvet. But you can choose any material you want as long as it is easily stretchable. This will help when attaching the material to the frame in the next step.
The first thing you want to do is lay your panel out on the material and cut it to size. (you will want to leave more than you think on the edges, if you have too much you can always trim it off later… too little and you have just wasted a piece of material)
Now it’s time to put the foam in to the frame. You will want the outside (the side facing the material) to be the smooth side. If you don’t do it correctly, the ripples in the foam will appear on your panel. Lay the panel down and place the foam inside. (be sure that your center piece is towards the back) With the foam in the frame, it should be flat all the way across when the panel is laying flat.
For good measure, I stapled the foam to the center support just to make sure it would stay put. Once you are done with that, the panel should look like the second picture below. Now you are ready to start “wrapping” your panel in velvet (or whatever material you choose)
I started by doing the sides first. I pulled the material and checked everything twice before stapling just to make sure the material was enough to cover the entire panel. Start with one side first, making sure that you stretch the material tight as you go down the edge. Once that side is done, repeat these steps for the other side. As I mentioned before, if the material is to long, just trim it off “after” stapling.
Once that is complete, you will want to start working on the two ends. Now, what I did was every once in while I would turn the panel over to make sure that there weren’t any ripples or creases, and that everything looked smooth. This will save you from having to go back later and remove staples, etc. I paid special attention to the corners to make sure that they didn’t look funny from the front. I wanted everything to look as smooth and clean as possible once hanging on the wall.
Well, you are almost done with your panel! The only thing left to do now is figure out a way to hang it. I decided to just go with the average “picture hanger” as I wanted to minimize the amount of holes, etc. in the wall of my studio. But you are welcome to use whatever means necessary to hang your panel.
Well the only thing left to do is place the panel on the wall and see how it looks!
Thanks for reading!