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post #1 of 9 Old 08-31-2012, 12:40 PM - Thread Starter
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Hello all!

After having been scouring through these forums off and on for the last several years, I've finally bitten the bullet and am looking to build my first screen. I have an Epson HC 720 that for three years has been projecting on a gross, bumpy, off-white drywall in a room with uncontrollable light. Even with all that, I've loved the projector experience!

I'm moving to a new place and we're installing blackout curtains and I've been given the wife-ly mandate - build a screen if we're keeping the projector. I'm looking for something that is lightweight and movable (the apartment is a rental - but we are allowed to screw in); but still has good image quality. I work in the film industry and a big part of the upgrade is to feel better about inviting over co-workers for the multiple requisite movie nights.

Initially I was thinking a BOC screen, velvet frame, and some form of handle-coat hook mount (which would be great for me as it's removable), but with all I've been reading on the various substrate boards, I'm now terrifically confused. I'm leaning towards a Do-Able or Wilsonart Deluxe White, but not sure whether either will be as light as a BOC board (or close); and which will work best with some ambient light.

The important things to me are -
a) Don't want to paint. Just not yet! I have a limited time frame to put the screen together.
b) Lightweight - I don't want to damage the apartment we're using within days of moving in!
c) Last but certainly not least - performance! Ideally it works decently in ambient light situations, but it's not the end of the world. We HAVE been projecting on a white drywall, afterall.

Any help you can offer would be great! I live in the Los Angeles area if it helps for material availability.

Thanks!
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post #2 of 9 Old 08-31-2012, 03:25 PM
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Cinesonic,

Welcome to AVS's Diy Screen Forum!

Hmmmmmm.....a hard man.

Well, with the 720, and because you don't want to even try painting....the best, least expensive "Hang-N-Shoot" material for you would be Do-able Board. Usually a Lowes offering. Or....Lowes or HD might have a similar product. It cannot be glossy in the least.

But sadly Bro....both of those items as well as Black Out cloth are white, and so being...you can kiss any real ability to watch programing in ambient light goodby.

Consider this.

You pick up a sheet of Doable or similar "NON-Glossy" White board.
Have the location you get it from cut it to 82" x 48". (...we are shooting for a 90" screen here...)
Buy 2 Tubes of Liquid Nails
Buy 4 sticks of 3.25" Primed MDF Baseboard Trim
Buy 1 Quart of Behr Flat Interior Enamel tinted with Disney's Mouse Ears Black
Buy 1 Good 3" Brush

Now comes the nasty.....

If you even were to consider trying to build a frame for a BOC screen, between the time and expense you'd be spending more of each instead of simply picking up a Couple roller, a Can Of Behr Flat Interior Enamel in a neutral Gray, and simply rolling on two nice even coats. No contest really. And when you stop to think that if you do so, ambient light performance will improve 150%....where's the argument? (...you can always spray your next effort...because there will be a next effort.... biggrin.gif )

But that Murphy guy...I heard he has a home up in Ventura, and likes to trouble LA'ers at times? Well supposin' you can't find any Doable. Home Depot and Lowes also carry something called Thrifty White Hardboard...a piece of material that costs all of a whole $13.00. I know HD will cut it for you...and if you simply take care rolling onto that material, you should spend all of 1 longish day getting the Screen done and up.

The size I mentioned above relates to these instructions.

The Board can be rolled while Flat on the wall, held up by 6-8 screws shot through the 2" of extra Boarder that is all around the 78" x 44" actual Screen area. Cover 1-1/2" of the two inch Boarder area (from the outside edge in) with Painter's Blue Tape, and then paint all the way out as close to the edge of the Tape as possible.

While the screen is Drying with each of what should be 2 light coats and one final normal coat of the Gray, cut your 4 pieces of trim so the inside edges of the corner Miter Cuts are 78" x 2 and 44" x 2

Paint the Trim using a Brush and with care to avoid obvious Brush marks. Detail out the side edges, but do not paint the rear.

Take the Dried, finish screen down and lay it Flat on a hard surface. Apply the Liquid Nails to the painted Screen board as a long ribbon 1" in from the outside edge. Not too thick....but at least as thick as a big School Pencil in diameter. Place the Trim onto the Board, press it into place with FIRM pressure (...wear some clean Cotton Jersey Gloves to avoid marring the nice Black finish...)

Now go away....let the trim set up and dry HARD overnight. Now all you have to do is get a Hangman French Cleat, attach one piece to the rear of the Screen with Glue & Screws...the other to the wall, hang and enjoy the exclamations of your fellow cohorts.

Oh yeah....hang the projector at or as close to 9' 3" as you possibly can. You want maximum Lumens to get maximum fl on the screen.

Once again....ya gotta go Light Gray in the least, so the above is the quickest, easiest, and least expensive way to make a very portable (one man easy carry) and very acceptable Screen.

Get'ter Dun!

To quote James T. Kirk;
"I'm laughing at the superior intellect"
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post #3 of 9 Old 08-31-2012, 04:01 PM - Thread Starter
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Wow, thank you so much! I did think that a grey was probably going to be better but wasn't sure the best way to go about it. I suppose I could go about this and still use the black velvet on the MDF trim right? Might add a little bit of extra time, but I think the look and feel of it will be worth it.

As far as painting does go, if it's my first time painting a screen, am I less likely to mess up while rolling or while spraying? I don't mind putting a few more pennies in if I'm less likely to want to do it again next week.

Thanks so much for your help! The addiction starts smile.gif
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post #4 of 9 Old 08-31-2012, 04:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cinesonic View Post

Wow, thank you so much! I did think that a grey was probably going to be better but wasn't sure the best way to go about it. I suppose I could go about this and still use the black velvet on the MDF trim right? Might add a little bit of extra time, but I think the look and feel of it will be worth it.

Oh yeah! I stuck the Black Paint in there because i thought you were really adamant about doing everything quick. here's alink to the least expensive, most applicable Plush Black velvet in existence: http://www.syfabrics.com/View.aspx/Plush-Triple-Velvet/Black-Plush-Triple-Velvet/681/264
Quote:
As far as painting does go, if it's my first time painting a screen, am I less likely to mess up while rolling or while spraying? I don't mind putting a few more pennies in if I'm less likely to want to do it again next week.

By my own and many other's reasoning, spraying is always the most assured way of getting a virtually perfect surface. Yes...mistakes can be made, but they seldom are if simple instructions are followed.
This unit here is your "Huckleberry". http://www.ebay.com/itm/GRACO-HV2900-39-CFM-450W-HVLP-House-Paint-Spray-Station-Machine-System-Painter-/230791007590?forcev4exp=true#ht_4652wt_1140

Do you have a Sherwin Williams Store anywhere near you?

Quote:
Thanks so much for your help! The addiction starts smile.gif

You have no idea. eek.gif


wink.giftongue.gifbiggrin.gifcool.gif

To quote James T. Kirk;
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post #5 of 9 Old 08-31-2012, 11:14 PM - Thread Starter
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I've got a Sherman Williams, HD and Loews all in convenient distance. This all seems pretty easily doable, although I might have to tell the wife to wait a few more days smile.gif Patience is a virtue, after all.

Are there any other tweaks you would recommend, assuming I was willing to spend a little more and/or take a little more time? I love the Hangman French Cleat idea, definitely what I was leaning towards, but if I am going to go the paint route (and for a decent grey screen, it seems the best way), I might as well spend the few extra days making this a screen I'm happy with for a while. Any extra suggestions or tips you've got would be amazing!

Thanks again for your help!
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post #6 of 9 Old 09-01-2012, 09:31 AM
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You should first finalize the size you want your screen to be, based on if not limited to the capabilities of your PJ. also as to if your actually willing and ready to spray instead of roll.

I'd say 110" diagonal is your biggest possible size (Sintra substrate) that can be construed to be "movable". It's Foam Board, so 1/4" thick by 54" x 96" only weighs about 30 lbs UN-trimmed..

Such expanded Foam "Sign boards" are better suited to the job of painting a screen because they are after all intended for sign makers to paint signs on.

But for certain, if you remain below 100" diagonal and you still want to pinch a penny until it squeals, the TWH is supreme.

Sherwin Williams has some excellent quality paints, but Home Depot's Behr Premium Plus Interior Flat Enamel is of more than adequate quality...for about $18.00 less a gallon.

Tweaking the Screen paint itself is very easily done...there are several types of applications with different levels of performance to choose from if your going to consider buying that little $39.00 gem of a Electric HVLP Gun. If rolling is what is in order...choices become pretty basic.

Give it some final consideration and we'll direct you down the road you choose. Just be advised that anything you choose will turn out to be something that performs far beyond your expectations. That's what makes it all so very much fun.....and cool. cool.gif

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post #7 of 9 Old 09-02-2012, 06:58 PM - Thread Starter
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So after looking at the room, I'm set on a 90" 16:9 screen. I'll ceiling mount the PJ at about 9'8" with seating between 9' and 12' from the screen. A little bit smaller screen will look Bette on the wall.

I'm goingto spring for the spraying - future proofing as much as trying to not mess it up : ).

So I think with that size I should go for the do-able board, cut to 82"x48" ( I might try for a slightly smaller border, 2.5" instead of 3.5" if possible, so then I would just cut down to about 81"x47". Velvet border, light grey paint and I should be ready to go.

Any thoughts or comments before I jump in?

Thanks again!!
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post #8 of 9 Old 09-14-2012, 12:58 PM
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Since it sounds like you plan to watch mainly movies, I am curious why you plan a 16:9 screen. that is what I had at first, but I recently made a 2.35:1 screen because I didn't like the gray bars at the top and bottom and wasn't really happy with my masking solution. Now when I watch a 16:9 format I draw a couple of black curtains and no more gray bars.
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post #9 of 9 Old 09-14-2012, 02:09 PM
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Cinesonic,

Your figures don't make sense for a 16:9 format.

They should be
85" x 48" (98" diag.)
84" x 47" (96" diag.)
82" x 46" (94" diag.)
80" x 45" (92" diag.)

A 82" x 47" sheet would leave you 2" of boarder around a 80" x 45" (92" diag.) screen.

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