DIY Privacy Screen

  • DIY Privacy Screen

One end of this deck is open to the garden and the other is exposed to the neighbours and so needs screening. 

The original lattice screen didn’t offer a lot of privacy and wasn’t effective at hiding the water heater located next to the deck.

Recycled hardwood sleepers were used to custom-build a screen for the space. 

The screen is a box frame with slats that pivot, so they move like louvres.  

deck with privacy screen, handyman magazine,

Click here to see this full DIY Deck Renovation

DIY PRIVACY SCREEN CLOSE UP, handyman magazine,
Recycled hardwood sleepers were used to custom-build a screen for the space

Cut the sleepers 

The screen frame and louvres are made from 2400 x 210 x 30mm sleepers. For a 2400mm high screen, cut the louvres to 2330mm to allow for the top and base with 5mm clearance. Clamp two sleepers together to cut with a circular saw.  

cut the sleepers,
The screen frame and louvres are  made from 2400 x 210 x 30mm sleepers

Step 1. Prepare sleepers

Use a trim router and a 10mm roundover bit to arris the edges of the recycled 210 x 30 x 2400mm spotted gum sleepers. Sand the sleepers smooth using a belt sander or, if you don’t have one, use a random orbital sander. Cut the sleepers to length using a circular saw.

Step 2. Make louvre holes

Draw a centreline along the length of the top and base of the box frame. Mark a line 30mm from each end for the frame sides, then mark the louvre centres on the centrelines. Drill 4mm pilot holes and use a 22mm spade bit to open the holes to 15mm deep. Drill a 10mm clearance hole right through.

Step 3. Drill louvres

Make a jig from scrap timber to help locate the end centres of the louvre slats and drill 10mm clearance holes to a minimum depth of 90mm. On the edges of the box frame sides, drill three equally spaced holes. On the ends of the box frame top and base, drill three equally spaced holes.

Step 4. Assemble screen

Use the predrilled holes to secure the frame top to the sides with three screws at each corner. Insert hex head bolts through the louvre holes, add two washers, then position the louvres. Insert the bolts and washers in the base, then attach to the louvres. Secure the base to the sides using screws.

Step 5. Secure the screen

Check the bolts are seated in the louvres, then secure in position with a high-strength building filler such as Selleys Plasti-Bond. With the help of another person, lift the screen and clamp in position, securing through the base to the joists with screws and to the pergola with brackets.

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