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Away from prying eyes: this creative DIY privacy screen lets you keep yourself to yourself

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A privacy screen made from several wooden planks stands out behind a bed of plants.
This DIY privacy screen looks stylish, can be expanded on a modular basis and makes sure you can relax without being disturbed.
  • Difficulty
    medium
  • Costs
    50-100 €
  • Duration
    1-3 h

Introduction

Do you love spending time in the garden, on the balcony or on the patio? Then you probably also want to take this time for yourself and enjoy your privacy. No problem: We’ll show you how to build a stylish, creative privacy screen – that you can even expand – in just a few simple steps that looks great and shields you from prying eyes.

It should go without saying that your safety is paramount throughout every step of the project, so make sure you take the necessary precautions to protect yourself. You can find an overview of the correct protective clothing you need when using each type of tool here:

What you need

Icon accessories
Additional items
  • Pocket rule
  • G-clamps
  • Pencil
Icon confirmation
Material list
  • 2 wooden beams made from Douglas fir (70 x 45 mm each) | 9 wooden slats (100 x 20 mm each), 2 m in length | Torx screws (4 x 50 mm)
L: Length, W: Width, H: Height, D: Diameter

Let's start - step by step

1 10

Saw the wooden beams to length

A wooden beam is being measured with a laser measure.
A wooden beam is being sawn to length.
A wooden beam is being sanded with a cordless multi-sander.

What you need: Cordless NanoBlade saw, nanoBLADE Wood Speed 65, laser measure, Cordless multi-sander, Sanding sheet for multi-sander G120, G-clamps, Pocket rule, 2 wooden beams made from Douglas fir (70 x 45 mm each)

We are only going to show you the steps to build a one-metre module for a privacy screen. That way, you’ll still be able to design your own privacy screen however you like and adapt it to your circumstances. The greater the amount of space you have to cover, the greater the number of modules you can build and connect together at the end.

First things first: start by sawing the crossbeams to the right length.
In our case, we’ve measured 1,200 mm for this. One module requires two beams in this length.

Then, sand the sawn edges.

2 10

Attach the slats

A wooden slat is being positioned on a crossbeam.
A wooden slat is being attached to a crossbeam with a screw.

What you need: Cordless sander, T20 drill bit, G-clamps, Pocket rule, 2 wooden beams you sawed to length in step 1 | 2 wooden slats (100 x 20 mm), 2 m in length | Torx screws (4 x 50 mm)

Now, lie the two wooden beams you sawed to length 1,300 mm apart on your work surface.
Then, place two wooden slats on the two beams: In our case, the slats are 800 mm apart and each one protrudes 200 mm over the lower end (picture one).

Next, fasten the two wooden slats with a screw at each of the four overlapping points (picture two). Watch out: You should still be able to move your construction so that you can align it perfectly in the next step.

3 10

Align the construction

A diagonal is being measured on a frame made from several wooden beams and slats.
You can perfectly align the construction vertically by measuring the diagonal length between the two opposite crossbeams.

What you need: Pocket rule, A helping hand

The slats need to be attached perpendicular to the crossbeams so that your privacy screen stands up straight when you’re finished.
To make sure this happens, measure the diagonal between the two ends of the crossbeams (the opposite corners of each). You’ll know you’ve got the 90-degree angle you need if the two diagonals are the same length.

Tip: It’s best to get a second person to help you out with the measuring as it’ll make holding the pocket rule easier and the result more precise.

4 10

Position additional wooden planks

Longer wooden planks are being positioned on a wooden frame.
A gap between two wooden planks is being measured with a pocket rule.
Spacers are being used to position several wooden slats at equal distances.
Several wooden slats are being pushed up to the same height so that they are level.

What you need: Pocket rule, spacer, 7 wooden slats (100 x 20 mm), 2 m in length | Wooden beam with a minimum length of 1,200 mm

Now, take the seven other wooden slats and lie them on the crossbeams as well, positioning them between the two slats you’ve already attached (picture one).

Push the slats to one side so they’re flush together and measure the ‘remaining’ distance between them and the fixed slat (picture two) – in our case this is about 100 mm.

Now, divide this distance by eight to work out the size of the gap you need to leave between each slat (12.5 mm) and use spacers to position them at the equidistant intervals required (picture three).

Once you’ve done that, you can use a normal wooden beam to easily push all the slats up to the same level height (picture four).

5 10

Screw the wooden slats to the frame

A wooden beam is being used to mark holes in the correct positions.
Several wooden slats are being screwed together using a cordless screwdriver.

What you need: Cordless sander, T20 drill bit, G-clamps, Wooden beam with a minimum length of 1,200 mm | Torx screws (4 x 50 mm)

You can use the same beam again in the next step to mark the holes for the screws. Do this by positioning the beam above the attached crossbeam and marking two points on each slat (picture one).

Now, insert the screws into the marked positions to secure everything in place (picture two).

6 10

Design the front – attach the crossbeams

Two short beams are being positioned on a row of wooden slats.
Make sure that the beams are level when they are screwed on to the privacy screen.

What you need: Cordless NanoBlade saw, nanoBLADE Wood Speed 50, Cordless sander, T20 drill bit, Pocket rule, G-clamps, 2 wooden beams made from Douglas fir (70 x 45 mm) | Torx screws (4 x 50 mm)

It’s now time to add a little glamour to your privacy screen by attaching a second layer of wooden slats to the front of it.
It’s up to you how many more slats you want to attach – it depends on how creative you’re feeling and how you’re going to use your privacy screen. In our case, we decided to go for an extra two-slat element and an extra three-slat element.

For the three-slat element, you first need to saw two addition wooden beams (70 x 45 mm) so that they are both 300 mm in length.
Then, position the beams on the front of the privacy screen (picture) perpendicular to the slats at a somewhat larger distance apart and screw them on tightly from behind with enough screws.

7 10

Design the front – attach the slats

A protractor is being used to ensure that wooden slats have been positioned level.
Three wooden slats are being attached using a cordless drill.

What you need: Cordless sander, T20 drill bit, Pocket rule, Protractor, G-clamps, 3 wooden slats (100 x 20 mm), 2 m in length | Torx screws (4 x 50 mm) |

Now, lie three wooden slats equidistant apart on the attached beams and make sure the bottom edges are level. You can use the example above to help guide you here. (Picture one).
Then, attach the slats using four screws for each one. (Picture two)

Repeat steps 6 and 7 to build a two-slat element. In this case, the short beams underneath the slats need to be 180 mm in length.

8 10

Saw the slats to size

  • A piece of a wooden slat is being sawn off with a NanoBlade saw.
    Feel free to get creative when you’re sawing the slats.
  • A wooden slat is being sanded with a cordless multi-sander.
    And then proceed to sand them carefully.

In this last step, you can add a more personal touch to the design of your privacy screen.

Do this by using a NanoBlade saw or a traditional saw to shape the top ends of the wooden slats in whichever way you like. It’s completely up to you whether you want them all to be the same length, to vary in height or to form a wave.
But remember to sand all the edges after you’ve sawn them.

9 10

Connect the modules

  • Two privacy screen walls made from wooden slats are being connected with one another.
    It’s easy to screw multiple modules together if the two crossbeams are offset when you attach them.

What you need: Additional privacy screen modules

You’ve now built the first one-metre-wide privacy screen. The protruding crossbeams on both sides make it easy to add to the module, meaning you can follow the same process to build even more privacy screen walls and connect them together. This works as both a row and a corner, depending on what you need.

However, make sure that the crossbeams of the other modules are offset so that they can be slotted together and screwed together tightly at the end (see picture). It’ll then be easier for you to screw the individual modules together and expand your privacy screen to the size you want it.

10 10

Put your privacy screen together

A large privacy screen is standing on a patio.
Several modules together ultimately result in the perfect privacy screen.

What you need: A plan!

Before you can enjoy your new-found privacy, you should think about how you’re going to secure your screen in place: There are, of course, different options depending on the conditions in your garden or on your patio. You can drill holes and screw it in place, stick it into the grass or even build a support so that it can stand freely.

Choose whichever option is best-suited to making your privacy screen stable.


Legal notice

Bosch does not accept any responsibility for the instructions stored here. Bosch would also like to point out that you follow these instructions at your own risk. For your own safety, please take all the necessary precautions.