Home Engineering Publications
WPI Technical Theatre Handbook: Materials
  next up previous contents index
Next: Tools Up: Construction Previous: Construction   Contents   Index


Many different types of materials can be used to construct the various elements of a set. Wood, cardboard, paper, plastics and metal are among the materials commonly used in large theatres. Most small theatres tend to limit themselves to wood, cardboard and paper, but there are often exceptions. Proper knowledge of how to work with these materials is essential for a successful and safe set construction.

Wood is a relatively easy material to work with. It is strong, easily cut with the appropriate tools, and readily available. Corrugated or honeycomb cardboard can be used in place of wood in some instances, especially in non-structural set pieces. It is easily cut with a knife, and readily shaped into a variety of forms. A variety of useful foams exist that can be used to construct various decorative set pieces. Plastics and metal are more difficult to work with, and require special tools that are often more difficult to gain access to than those for working wood.

Obtaining the appropriate materials can sometimes be a challenge. Lumber is usually fairly easy to obtain, as there are several lumber yards and homeowner-oriented stores that carry a large selection of materials. Other, more exotic materials may be difficult to track down. Theatre supply houses, craft stores, hobby shops, and industrial supply companies are all excellent resources for hard-to-find materials such as corrugated cardboard, plastics, metal, and foams.

next up previous contents index
Next: Tools Up: Construction Previous: Construction   Contents   Index
Steve Richardson 2000-07-06

Use of information in this document implies understanding and agreement with the copyright and terms of use. Specifically, no warranty is expressed or implied regarding the accuracy of the information contained within. YOU USE THIS INFORMATION AT YOUR OWN RISK. All trademarks are property of their respective owners. You must obtain permission from the author before using the contents of The Handbook for anything other than private use.

Table of Contents

[PDF] [Whole book in PDF 5.3MB]

Page last modified:
Copyright © 1993-2000 prefect - All Rights Reserved.