Building the Providence Stage Panels

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This is the stage panel project Houston Woodworking designed and built for Providence Community Church. These panels measure about 32 feet wide by about 6 feet tall.

Materials

(3) 4×8 sheets of 3/4″ oak plywood

Over 50 pieces of 1x4x12 pine lumber

1,000’s of 18 gauge 1-1/4″ brad nails

Several 1-1/4″ Kreg brand coarse thread screws

Several 1/4″ hex bolts 2-1/2″ long as well as nuts and washers

2×2 steel piping for frames (built by a different craftsman not associated with Houston Woodworking)

Design

PCC Middle Panel

This project was designed in two parts, the picture above is the SketchUp model for phase 1. The final design was modified and phase 2 planning was drawn without the use of SketchUp.

Build

These panels were fun to build! The geometric pattern was so satisfying for an OCD(ish) type brain such as myself.

I used plywood for the wood frames that the planks are attached to. Plywood is often more square than dimensional lumber and it served as a great material to make the frames. They were constructed using pocket holes.

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Please ignore the horribly messy workbench in the photo!

Once I had my plywood frames I established my angle for the wood planks. The first panel made was very tedious, but it served as a template for the rest of the build. More information on this soon. Once my angle layout lines were properly drawn I began to place slightly over-sized 1×4 planks onto the frame. I attached using brad nails. Since the panels are mirror images of one another I was able to cut multiple 1×4’s at a time.

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After the wooden planks were attached I used my Makita plunge saw and track to clean up the edges. I found this to be faster and more precise than trying to cut every angle perfectly on my miter saw.

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I used this first panel as a template to build the remaining panels. I placed the template panel plank side up on my workbench. I then began building the next panel on top of the template, but plank side down. This process did two things: first it insured perfect alignment between the two panels, and second it created the mirror image needed for the chevron shape. Unfortunately I do not have a picture of this process.

Once the panels were built everything was sanded to 80 grit and stained “Special Walnut” by Minwax. Yes, this did take FOREVER, and I managed the worst splinter of my entire life during this finishing process.

Once all panels were dry they were taken to the church and installed. The install process was simple. I drilled holes through the plywood and metal frames then secured the panels using bolts. Care was taken to make sure that each panel was straight and aligned properly with one another. The panels were also attached to one another using pocket holes and screws. There are a total of 8 different panels in this project.

Conclusion

If you are still with me I want to thank you for taking the time to read this build article. I hope that you found it interesting and possibly even a little educational.

 

 

 

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