Poster board backdrops

Discussion in 'Photos & Videos' started by Pitchwife, Jan 4, 2005.

  1. Pitchwife

    Pitchwife Dreamer

    I am thinking of using poster board (actually it's heavy cardboard) to paint my backdrop on. the pros are that it is flexable to go around the rounded corneers, it is easily mounted to the wall and can also be easily removed and it can be laid flat to do the actual painting. The cons are duribility and covering the joints. Has anyone ever tried anything like this?
  2. Matthyro

    Matthyro Will always be re-membered

    I have and you need some good frame work to hold it in place because without it the card tends to warp. My preference now is to use 1/8th masonite as it can be curved for the corners too.
  3. spitfire

    spitfire Active Member

    You can also use thin flexible plastic sheet from a sign supply shop. Don't buy from your LHS or you'll pay too much since they deal in smaller sizes. I used masonite for my backdrop, but it was full sheets, 4x8 and at that size it barely flexed at all - certainly not enough. So now, I have square corners, because I just found out about the plastic idea after I'd done the masonite. :cry: :cry:

  4. ezdays

    ezdays Out AZ way

    Just got a great idea on this. Wait until the next election comes. Every street corner in town will be plastered with signs, some small, but many pretty big, 2' x 4' or even larger. Some are cardboard, but many are signboard and they all seem to stay stiff even after a rain. Wait until the morning after the election and help yourself, don't do it before then or you could wind up in the pokey since that it against the laws in most places. You will be doing them and the enviroment a favor. And the price is right. :thumb: :thumb:

    Unlike Val, I haven't started my backdrop yet, but I think I'm going to wait, There's a local election coming up soon. :wave: :wave:
  5. seanm

    seanm Member

    I guess Masonite in full sheets won't bend enough, but I ripped mine into 16" strips and it bends REAL easy! I even have one place that needed an S curve and it worked. I used joint compound and some joints are better then others, but they are mostly hidden after painting.

  6. Fred_M

    Fred_M Guest

    I use a matte board which is already sky blue. It can be purchased at Hobby Lobby and is 2X heavier than poster board and bends corners easily. The straights will need need supported with slats. Fred
  7. Pitchwife

    Pitchwife Dreamer

    Thanks for all of the input from everyone. :thumb: And here I thought that backdrops were a pretty cut-&-dried aspect of the hobby. :rolleyes: Glad to know that there are so many variations to choose from. Now to pick the one that is right for me. :D :D :D
  8. SAL Comet

    SAL Comet Member

    I don't think anything is cut & dry, there seems to be a half dozen ways to do everything.
  9. ezdays

    ezdays Out AZ way

    Yep, and if 12 people answered, there'd be a dozen ways. :) That's what maikes this hobby so much fun. :thumb:
  10. Sir_Prize

    Sir_Prize Member

    Here's mine...
    I'm going to use clear lexan, the thin sheets. That way I can put images of buildings on the
    front and back to give them depth. on the back I can "haze" things to make the buildings
    seem even futher back (or smoggy like a city is). I a couple other "magic" things.
  11. SAL Comet

    SAL Comet Member

    :eek: :eek: LEXAN!! $$$$$$ Have you priced that stuff Prize?
  12. seanm

    seanm Member

    Lexan? Sure don;t think I could aford it around my Layout! Maybe for one "module" or something.

    I think I saw an article about someone using aluminum flashing in rolls. Looked interesting but I started to think about the cuts I would get from trying to handle 25' of 14" wide material with that sharp an edge. eeeeeouch!!!
  13. Blake

    Blake Member

    Here's another one (just what you needed, right?). Styrene. A buddy of mine used 1/8" sheets of styrene and it worked out very well. He got it from a plastic supply place and it wasn't all that expensive. He said it was very flexible yet strong.
  14. Pitchwife

    Pitchwife Dreamer

    One thing I've found that produced good results as far as obtaining low cost plexiglass was a visit to my local glass store. I was able to procure a couple of pieces of plexiglass of varying thicknesses and dimensions by asking them if I could go through their trash bins. I picked up two nice pieces, one was 1/16" thick approximately 7"X54" and another piece 1/8th" thick 10"X18". The thin one will front the flashing where the tracks will be percariously close to the edge, and the other will make a nice layout point control panel. The best part was the price. Since they were "trash" I got them for FREE! Definately worth looking into. :thumb: :thumb: :D :D
  15. jetrock

    jetrock Member

    I bought some .020" styrene sheets from a local plastic supplier--40"x72" sheets--for $3 each. The price per foot is even cheaper for 4'x8' sheets. Thicker might be better for a backdrop--.040 maybe--but with less flexibility. A lot cheaper than buying sheet styrene at the hobby shop!
  16. ezdays

    ezdays Out AZ way

    It's a fact that Plexiglass (acrylic) is about a third the cost of Lexan, but it is more prone to cracking and not as easy to drill. One good source for cuttoffs, like Clark said, is glass shops or any plastic fabricator. We used a lot of acrylic when we had our business, and I always had pieces that were too small or an odd shape and weren't worth using. Some dealers will sell you these maybe by the pound, others will just give it away.

    Another thing to consider is ABS sheets. Like styrene, it is very fexible and soft enough to drill or cut, but ridgid enough to stand up. It comes in a variety of colors and most have a texture on one or both sides. And it's cheap, about half the cost of acrylic.
  17. seanm

    seanm Member

    But if you need to have a backdrop that is 8 feet long or more, how do you deal with the seam if you are using plexi or plastic. With masonite or even drywall, mud and sanding works. I suppose you could use plastic filler putty or something.
  18. jetrock

    jetrock Member

    Actually, mud and sanding works fine for plastic too! It's how I hide seams in my styrene streets. The only trick to it is that instead of using sandpaper, smooth the dry mud using a damp sponge.
  19. ezdays

    ezdays Out AZ way

    That depends on the type of plastic. I'm not sure how well drywall mud would work on plastic over the long haul. I would think it wouldn't adhear that well and eventually crack. I haven't tried it so I can't say for sure, but I've worked around plastic long enough to wonder.

    I doubt that you can get a seamless look no matter what you did, but there are many good glues that work well. You can get exopy in clear and different colors now days that would work on most any kind of plastic. You can use the same glue that you put model structures together to glue acrylics and styrene and for PVC or ABS, well there is both black and clear cement. Sanding a buffing will smooth things out, but let's face it, any seam doesn't have to be perfectly smooth, it will get painted over anyway so if it's a bit rough, who's gunna notice?
  20. Charles Mark

    Charles Mark Member

    I just installed 22' of 1/8" Masonite, rounded corners very easy and look great.

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