How to create a wooden mobile TV wall
In this blog, I am going to show you how to build a mobile TV wall for your home.
Skill level: Medium
Build time: 3 hours
Saw: Ideally, you would use an electric mitre saw to cut the wood to size. However, if you don't have one, then a standard hand saw will do the trick, but be prepared to get those muscles working
Screwdriver: A battery-operated or manual screwdriver or manual with a Phillip's head
Electric drill: Unless you have a battery-operated drill
3mm wood drill bit
7mm masonry drill bit
Ratchet or spanner: For tightening up the screw bolts
Nails: One or two boxes of 1.5" oval heads
> Wood screws: 12 x 4"
> Screw bolts: 4 x 2"
Wood: > Timber: 5 - 6ft x 3" x 2" > Roof battens: 12 - 6ft x 1.5" x 1" > Fence slats: 54 - 4ft x 3" x 1"
Hooks: 4 x hooks and 2 x raw plugs
Wheels: 2 x heavy-duty industrial cart wheels
I pre-cut the wood at the start of the build, to speed up the nailing process later, but you could do this as you go along. So using a mitre or hand saw, cut the following wood to the following sizes, to begin making the 6ft x 6ft TV wallboard:
Timber: 2 - 6ft x 3" x 2" (top and bottom of the outer frame)
Timber: 3 - 5ft 6" x 3" x 2" (left and right sides + middle bar)
Roof battens: 12 - 6ft x 1.5" x 1"
Fence slats: 54 - 4ft x 3" x 1"
Pro-tip: When buying wood, check it is straight by placing one end of your wood on the floor and then holding the other end up to your eye height. Now, look down the side of the wood to see if the wood is bowed (bending) along its length. Don't forget to turn the wood too, as each side may be bending. If the woods bowed, then select another piece of wood if you can.
Building the frame
First, you are going to make a box shape with the timbers, so take the 6ft woods and lay them horizontally on the floor, approximately 6ft above each other to represent the top and bottom of the box, while laying them down on the 3" side, not the 2" side. Now place one of the 5ft 6" timbers in the middle, parallel to the top and bottom timbers.
Take the remaining 5ft 6" timbers and position one on the left and the other on the right vertically, making sure that the 6ft top sits above the left and right timbers. The middle 5ft 6" timber should also butt up to the inner sides of the left and right woods.
Here are the maths
3" top + 5ft 6" side + 3" bottom = 6ft. IMPORTANT! If you put the sides on the ends by mistake, then you'll end up with a 6ft 6" wide x 5ft 6" tall rectangle, which is wrong. (see pic lower down in the batten section)
Before joining the corners together, we'll first pre-drill two pilot holes in each of the outer four corners of the wooden square and halfway down the sides to stop the wood splitting when you screw them together later. So here are the instructions.
Take the 3mm wood drill head and fix it in the electric or battery-powered drill. Now bore two holes in the top of the 6ft horizontal timber on both the left and right sides, drilling straight through into the ends of the left and right vertical timber tops. Now repeat, but this time in the bottom horizontal timber and through into the left and right timber bottoms.
On the left and right sides of the frame, measure to the centre of the 5ft 6" timber (2ft 8") and make a mark with the pencil. Now place the 5ft 6" horizontal timer in the centre of the box at the height you have just measured and repeat on the other side. Now pre-drill two more holes on each side, ready to screw the centre timber into place later. If you have a sunken screw head drill bit too, you can also use this for a cleaner finish. (see pic below)
Now screw the frame together using the 12 x 4" screws in the predrilled holes you've just created. Great! You now have a 6ft x 6ft frame, with a horizontal bar across the middle. At this stage, make sure you check the dimensions are correct with a tape measure, in case you've mismeasured anywhere. This will save you a lot of time later if you have, as it will influence the next stage of this project.
Pro-tip: At this point, it may be wise to check if you can fit this the frame through your doorway(s) into the room you intend it to reside. I was lucky as I have patio doors coming off my lounge and used these; nevertheless, it was still a tedious task once I had the wheels on.
Adding the battens
In this part of the project, we begin adding the 6ft battens to the frame, so start by placing them on top of the frame vertically at equal distances from each other. IMPORTANT! The first batten should be positioned far left of the lefthand side timber, with the twelfth batten positioned far to the right, on the righthand side timber so you can attach the outer fence slats easily later. Now space out the buttons equally about every 6" apart from each other.
Now take the 1.5" nails and the hammer and begin nailing the battens into place. Nailing through each batten and into the bottom, middle and finally the top horizontal timbers.
Adding the fence slats
There are several ways to layout the fence slats on top of the battens, diagonally, in full lengths or cut into smaller pieces similar to a mosaic wall. I chose the mosaic wall effect for this project.
To begin, lay down the first slat at the bottom left corner of the frame horizontally and check if both ends of the slat are resting on the battens. Ideally, the left side will cover the first batten entirely and the righthand side of the slat should fall halfway across a batten so that when you start off with your second slat you will have a solid surface to nail it onto. If it doesn't, then cut the first slat to size, so it does. Then continue this process again and again.
To get the mosaic effect, I used the following slat order:
Row 1: two long
Row 2: one half, one long, one half
Row 3: two long… and so on...
Pro-tip: If you want a more randomized look, you can also cut the halves smaller again, as long as they still end on a batten
By the end of this process, you should now have a full wall of fence slats nailed into place.
Outer edge finish
As this unit was to be on display in my living room, I wanted the finish to the edges of the TV stand to be neat and tidy, hiding away all those rough ends from the slats, battens and timber. To do this use two slats per side all the way around the unit and cut the ends where the corners meet at 45 degrees to create a neat joint. These will then need nailing into place.
For my wall, I purchased some old industrial cartwheels to make the unit more mobile, for whenever I want to rotate my living room furniture around.
Firstly, measure your wheels and position them about 15 to 20 cm away from each end, so you give the bottom timber enough support and so you don't end up screwing into existing screws. Now bolt them into place with the four screw bolts and ratchet or spanner. Build finished!
Fixing in place
For this next phase, you will need help to lift the unit as it will be very heavy due to the amount of wood used during the build. So be careful when lifting it and try not to rest the unit on the side of the wheels as you lift it vertically; otherwise, they may break off.
Once up, you can now use the wheels to roll the TV stand into position, wherever you want it to finally reside. Now in situ, I found that the best way to keep the unit mobile but still secure against a wall (keeping in mind a TV will be hanging on it) was to use large screw hooks.
To begin, pre-drill a small hole at each end of the top timber on the back, roughly 15 - 20cm from each end to help, when you start inserting the hooks and hand tightening it into the wood.
Next mark the wall where the hooks fall, by looking over the top of the unit with ladders or asking someone else for help. Then move the unit away from the wall, to drill the wall using the 7mm masonry drill bit, ready for the two raw plugs, which you will hammer into the wall, ready for the remaining hooks to be hand screwed in to place.
Now rolling the TV wall back into place, fasten the hooks together to leave the unit secure and upright.