effective paint solution for garage - AVS Forum
DIY Screen Section > effective paint solution for garage
SHMO's Avatar SHMO 01:46 PM 10-24-2012
I am just getting ready to start a garage/theater makeover. I will be using an Epson 705hd projector, and hoping for 120" or larger screen. I have lots of flexibility in throw distance and placement. Ambient light can be controlled pretty well. However, being that this is a guys garage sporting events and pay per views will be a reality. Some amount of ambient light will be needed for that. My plan is to use the smooth drywall for screen material, and I would like some input on which of the paint solutions would work best. I have read through the beginners delight thead, as well as a few of the silver fire threads. I somewhat grasp what is being said, but to be honest, I am completely lost on what my application will require in regards to screen selection. The garage is very basic at this point. I will include a pic. Paint will be a definite, but black is probably not going to be an option. However, the walls and cabinetry will be decidedly darker than the current bright white. While this is surely not my "ultimate home theater" setup, I would like to give it the best fighting chance possible.

I am sure I have left out some important info, but if anyone has a suggestion in regards to screen paint, I would greatly appreciate it


The screen will be directly behind the couch in this picture

jwh92020's Avatar jwh92020 03:17 PM 10-24-2012
When I grow up, I want a garage that looks like yours!
SHMO's Avatar SHMO 06:05 PM 10-24-2012
Thanks.....just curious, when you grow up what kind of paint will you be putting on your screen wall? ....haha

jwh92020's Avatar jwh92020 07:15 PM 10-24-2012
My garage is storage and a workshop. I have a projector in our "formal" living room (I use that term loosely) and another that I use outside. For the indoor projector, I just built a 98" screen using Formica laminate. I had a couple of sheets left over from a job so I built a frame, covered it with 1/4" plywood and glued the Formica to it. It actually looks pretty good. At some point, I will paint it using one of the Silver Fire formulas. From what I can see, they are they way to go. As an experiment, I tried some paint I found through the forum here (it was a manufactured paint) and it didn't work for me like it did on the mfg's website. I also tried Behr Silver Screen. For a quick and easy screen, it looked good (at $17/qt it was cost effective as well). There are pics posted in the Screen section under digital1 crystal screen paint. Of the two, the Behr would be my choice, strictly on a cost vs return basis. Neither would compare to Silver Fire. To answer your question directly, in my case, a garage screen would be laminate, solely based on ease of care (I create lot's of sawdust), but the indoor screen will eventually become a Silver Fire screen. That was a long way to go to get a short answer, wasn't it?
SHMO's Avatar SHMO 11:58 PM 10-24-2012
I have been doing the outside theater for my business, and I love it. Unfortunately, here in NW Washington there is no "outside" theater from about Sept. to June...haha

I took some time tonight and setup a temporary movie in the Garage. I know my PJ is pretty bright and it is a little lacking on dark darks.I originally bought it solely for outdoor movies. Inside the garage, I ran it in ECO mode and played with the setup a little. That seemed to help with the image, granted it was only on a Killz primered wall. The thing I am most confused with in regards to screen paint is which shade to use. Obviously a gray tone screen is going to help me, but which one is the one for me? That is what I am struggling with.I like a bright image, but I also know that picking up some low darks and definition would help with a better picture overall.

Here is my rough idea. I am probably going to need to scale it back a bit. That is roughly 135", but the idea has me excited about getting the ball rolling.

MississippiMan's Avatar MississippiMan 06:21 AM 10-25-2012
For your needs and PJ situation, Silver Fire v2.5 3.0 would be best, providing you can spray. Rolling, your options are much more limited...leastwise to simple Grays with very little "Gain" potential.
SHMO's Avatar SHMO 10:15 AM 10-25-2012
Oh wow!

I wouldn't have guessed I needed it that dark. Thanks for enlightening me, (or darkening is this case). With that being said, I am able to spray, and I may just be inclined to do that. However, rolling does apeal to me because of the simplicity. Getting my big compressor to my garge would be my biggest obstacle, not to mention the lack of 220v power. So, here is the question that will be my deciding factor whether it will be worth the effort...... what product would be best for a roller application, and would there be a NOTICEABLE difference between Silver Fire V2.5/ 3.0 and painting it by roller with another product?

Thanks for your help.

SHMO's Avatar SHMO 11:48 AM 10-25-2012
I think I have found the answer to my questions by delving deep into some of your other threads, MM. You have sooooo much information out there. Thanks for all of your efforts. It is guys like you who make online forums such a success for guys like me. I appreciate what you do. Now, to see if I can gather up the motivation to tear into some Silver fire..

rengep's Avatar rengep 12:25 PM 10-25-2012
Go for the silver fire!! I just did and it turned out great. It's my first attempt and I'll say if I can do it so can you. Not difficult at all, a little focus and you're ready to go biggrin.gif

Here's some pictures of the paint job:

SHMO's Avatar SHMO 01:38 PM 10-29-2012
So I think I am going to attempt the silver fire paint. Knowing that my compressor and HVLP paint gun is not going to be an easy option, I have been reading good reviews on the inexpensive Graco HV1900USG setup. Any input on this item?

Also, I would be interested to know about color choice for the actual garage? For obvious reasons, I don't think "bat cave black" is going to work on my walls and ceiling. I still need this to function as a dual purpose space. Any suggestions on how dark I need to go in order to get a decent compromise? I would like to stay with white on the ceiling, but would something like this help much with refelctive issues overall? Would I need to go darker to see a noticeable improvment? Would I need to hit the ceiling as well to get good results? I would just like some input before i pick a shade and start rollin paint.

MississippiMan's Avatar MississippiMan 07:54 AM 10-31-2012

I'd suggest a Re-furbed Graco HV2900 instead. The 1900 is just bit too cheaply constructed and a bit under-powered as well.


First off...the ceiling is the MOST important surface. keep it White....and you'll condemn your Screen to being less than effective.

Your right about one thing...Black is a crappy choice. A very dark Gray for the ceiling and a slightly lighter Gray for the Walls is far better looking...or Dark Gray ceiling and a deep Flat Red or Flat Blueish Green or Blueish Gray are great choices.

Or......Simply leave those walls "as is" and paint the Ceiling and Trim a 3x darker shade of the Wall Color. Use Flat for the Ceiling and Eggshell Enamel for the trim.
(...otherwise the White trim will shine like crazy when the PJ / Screen is producing light...)
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