Build a Projector Mount – Interface with Architecture

I’ve been doing projector installations on the fly for quite awhile, and have seen just about every method out there. For portability and speed, nothing beats a thick steel plate, with holes drilled in it where the projector mount screws align, and some easy to find hardware. In the middle of the plate, I put a standard tripod nut or bolt (1/4″). If its a nut, use JB Weld to glue the nut to the back of the plate, after drilling through of course. Then, you can easily attach a Manfrotto super clamp and from there, to a a pipe clamp. Or to a tripod, or any standard lighting/photography gear (arms, ball heads, security camera mounts, etc. they all use 1/4″ screws).

The key to all this is the plate. Most sub-10lb projectors can get by with just two of their screws holding the projector up, assuming you’re hanging the projector horizontal or close to it. Build an X or a triangle if you need something stronger. On my 4200 lumen projector, I build an “X” to hit all 4 mounts, with a tripod-sized bolt holding it together in the middle. Not only is this WAY cheaper than the “ceiling mount” junk out there, its also low-profile, allowing the projector to fit in its original case by just unscrewing it like you would a camera to a tripod.

On the larger projector, I mounted a quick release plate, and put a second screw through, so it will never turn and loosen. This allows the projector to be mounted at any angle. Note: some projectors I’ve been told won’t operate vertically, although I’ve never seen this.

The manfrotto clamp
Generic pipe clamp
(great for going around pillars, or other architectural features)

Oh, and you’ll need a ball head for aiming. Manfrotto has fancy one’s, but you don’t need anything expensive for smaller projectors. Slik is usually fine. Here’s some info on them

Combine this with a VGA transmitter, and your installs are a snap. No long runs, no gaffing cables down, no stands to fall down.

Here’s this setup in a timelapse for IPR’s canal-closing with Share. Notice the projector mounted to the pillar? Took no time to install.

Hope this helps you get in and out of your gigs quick and easy.

Here’s one I set up holding a projector on a wall, bouncing off a convex mirror to hit an entire ceiling at the Time’s Up 20th anniversary.