A V-flat is a versatile and useful tool to have in your studio. While you can certainly buy one for around $200, it’s one of those things that’s pretty simple to make, and it will cost you half that much or even less. In this video, Nicole Bedard will show you how to make your own V-flat. It’s large, yet collapsible, portable, lightweight… and pretty cheap.
Nicole used 40 × 60 in foam board sheets: three white ones and three black ones. She had them cut to 40 x 40 in and kept the excess parts. After gluing the excess bits together, she got four 40 x 40 in squares that she used to make her V-flat. She paid $67 for the foam board only. However, there are ways to cut this cost.
Since Nicole glued black and white foam board together with some spray adhesive, she needed to buy both types. If you manage to find foam board that’s black on one side and white on the other, you’ll only need four pieces of that one. It can be the same size as Nicole used, or smaller, like 32 x 40 in. Alternatively, you can use a white foam board and glue black craft paper on the other side, or vice versa.
When your foam board is ready, it’s time to connect the four squares. Nicole used a technique that model airplane builders often use. It uses adhesive tape, and the trick is in alternating it along the edges of the board. Since it’s a bit difficult to explain, make sure to watch the video because Nicole demonstrates it perfectly.
Here are some things to keep in mind. First, make sure to use duct tape or any sticky tape that has water-based glue. The same goes for any adhesive you use on the foam boards or Styrofoam. Regular glue or hot glue will melt the foam in an instant, I learned that the hard way. And second, leave 1/4 of the V-flat without the sticky tape and add a bit of Velcro on the back. This way, you’ll be able to fold the V-flat, and fix the panels in place when you unfold it.
As I mentioned, make sure to watch the video so you get a better idea of how this is assembled. It seems so simple that I think it could be a DIY project you’ll do as soon as this weekend! If you make it, let us know how it worked out for you.
[DIY Portable Black and White V Flat, No Painting Necessary via ISO 1200]
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