Spandex DIY screen; Moleskin white, milliskin silver - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 29 Old 11-18-2012, 07:11 PM - Thread Starter
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Been hanging out in the theater build forum for a while and finally made it to the screen. After going around a bit, someone suggested I look for DIY Spandex. Seemed that Spandexworld was having a hard time keeping up with Moleskin matte silver, so I just ordered Moleskin matte white and Milliskin matte silver. This weekend I picked up the lumber. I was going to do the typical poplar 1x3, but couldn't find any straight sticks long enough for my horizontal runs, so I went with 1x4 oak instead. After a few cuts and some paint, I have my 132" x 55" cinemascope frame!

i-BRSx6Sr-L.jpg

Someone pointed out seeing the vertical supports in the middle, so I added some thick paint stir sticks below the T brackets to push those supports back a tad. Today I worked on getting the frame hung. Probably going to paint these or just wrap them in electrical tape or something.

i-Qw6nwzb-L.jpg

Looks pretty good from the second row.

i-HLk22KB-L.jpg

This is how it sits in the basement right now. I need to get the tracks and supplies from Home Depot and hopefully get the frame wrapped tomorrow. My projector (AE8000) is hopefully coming Wednesday.

i-L3p9Dwp-L.jpg

I'll post back as things progress. I also need to get a real camera out and stop using my iPhone. It's just so convenient!
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post #2 of 29 Old 11-18-2012, 09:55 PM
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Interesting. I would change your tittle so it says milliskin silver. I think there will be alot of people interested in this build. Are you going with the moleskin white or the milliskin silver as the viewing surface? Can you tell us more about the milliskin?
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post #3 of 29 Old 11-19-2012, 04:43 AM - Thread Starter
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I am starting with the silver as the back and the white as the viewing surface. Someone else suggested with this screen size I might want the extra light. I'm going to try the screen door mounting system so I can experiment if I'm not happy with it.

I haven't seen the moleskin silver, so can't comment much on color. As for the material, the milliskin is definitely lighter and thinner than the moleskin. It wasn't obvious from looking at it, but as soon as I tried to drape the material over the frame loosely (fail) and pulling the moleskin out of the box for the first time I instantly noted that it was heavier and thicker to the touch. Given what people have said about single layers letting through too much light and such, I don't think I'd want to do 2 layers of milliskin. But I figured with 1 layer of each I would have a good compromise and also hopefully improve acoustics through the material as well.
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post #4 of 29 Old 11-19-2012, 05:55 AM
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The screen tight stuff if awesome. As I said before, who ever discovered this method is a genius.

Whar projector do you have?

You are the first milliskiner. Would you be willing to take some shots with the milliskin over the white? It's looking like Scott and I failed with our moleskin silver alternative. Maybe you will suceed where we didn't.
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post #5 of 29 Old 11-19-2012, 06:28 AM - Thread Starter
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This is my first trip into projectors. I just ordered a Panasonic AE8000 yesterday that I am hoping shows up Wednesday. Sure would be nice to play with for Thanksgiving with the whole family there!

Perhaps you all can help advise me a bit. My room is just over 12' wide and about 22 feet deep. I think the projector will be about 16 feet from the screen. The screen is cinemascope, 11 feet wide by 55" tall, 143" diagonal. I wanted a BIG screen, and since I was limited on height I went with scope. I figure if I don't like the size I can always mask it down, I can't stretch it bigger.

To my question, with that size screen and that projector at that distance, some are saying I should do white over silver. My initial thought was silver over white. My room is 100% light controlled. When I close the double doors there is VERY little light leaking around the doors. If the light is off in the adjacent room, you can't see your hand in front of your face after 5 minutes in the theater. It's dark. I think I will flip it back and go with silver over white, but any feedback would be appreciated.
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post #6 of 29 Old 11-19-2012, 09:44 AM
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Congrats on jumping to the projector world. I am newly projectorized myself. Will you be watching in complete darkness all the time, or do you plan for some ambient lighting? MississippiMan wrote a nice little jingle about screens in my moleskin vs metallic thread. Basically white is good for complete and total darkness. Silver is better when ambient light is in the mix.

There are a view threads that show the difference in white over silver, vs silver over white. You are the first to milliskin it. I would try it both ways..and go with what you like the best.
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post #7 of 29 Old 11-19-2012, 09:53 AM - Thread Starter
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Thanks. A home theater has been a dream of mine for 10 years or more. I'm so excited to be finally putting the finishing (temporary) touches on it. I still have plans to switch my old JBL's for some in wall Definitive Technology speakers and then do fabric/sound treatments on the walls. I can't say for sure if I will be watching in complete darkness. Long term i want to have a rope light around the ceiling and I have some rope light around my riser. I could see watching with the riser rope light on just for some light. I'll start figuring that out this weekend when i start watching movies in there I suppose. I think I have decided to start with silver over white. If I'm not happy with it or I get bored, I'll switch it around someday.

Realizing I really should have sanded/rounded the corners of the frame before I stretch the fabric. So unfortunately I'm not sure I'll get to wrapping it tonight. We'll see. I anticipate the edge being covered by a border eventually, so I may just sand it and put the screen on there and not worry about painting it black. Being this close to finished is making it really difficult to even feign interest in work.
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post #8 of 29 Old 11-19-2012, 10:05 AM
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Check out my thread. I nailed some pine door stop on the perimeter of the frame for the stand off. I wouldnt worry about painting it. Like you said will be covered by the velvet border. I checked out your thread. You may want to reconsider your hanging method. I think it would be a pain in the ass to with that big screen to hit those loops. I would highly recommend a french cleat out of 2x4 or even a 1x wood.
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post #9 of 29 Old 11-19-2012, 10:25 AM
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Randy98mtu,

With the 8000's 2400 lumens / 480hz panels in play, and it's superb contrast specs, you have naught t worry about as far as your Screen size or Room situation. Silver or White....Either is right....with little or no light....you'll do all right. (....somebody stop me....)

I'm almost matching your effort with one of my own at present (10'er 2.35:1 w/ 13.5' throw ) My Screen will however be a Painted-onto-Drywall endeavor whose shade of metallic Gray will be about the same as the Silver Moleskin Spandex.

Always remember, a screen that has the ability to assist a PJ's efforts to render deep blacks while maintaining Whites offers the best possible balance. That the Panny has such stupendous contrast (...albeit dynamic, not native...) means that it has a decided leg up as far as maintaining as good a rendering of Black levels when "any" ambient light is factored in. Under any ambient light situation, a Gray is going to outperform a White

Another thing to take into consideration, by virtue of how your post reads, what with you being limited as to "height", that speaks to me that your ceiling will be in fairly close proximity to the top of your screen. That would mean that light intrusion from the rear of the room is not your primary concern, but rather "reflected projected light' bouncing off the Ceiling and washing across the top of the screen.

So....here's hoping your Ceiling is appropriately colored and has no sheen characteristics.

But....as I mentioned previously, starting out with deeper Black levels + high Lumen output means that they (Blacks) can suffer a bit of wash without horrible consequences compared to a PJ that doesn't offer such contrast. And if you use a Gray material that can resist ambient light...even a little bit more than can a White...and if you have the Lumen output to push past any attenuation a Gray introduces.....well, it'll be "All Good" for you.

Now...go shoot a Turkey. Myself....I'm after a 14 point Buck who lives within 1 mile of my barn. Using a 50 cal. Muzzle Loader w/Scope.

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post #10 of 29 Old 11-19-2012, 10:45 AM - Thread Starter
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In the middle of my room, my ceiling is actually 87 or 88" and my screen will be ~ 16" from it. I will be about 8" from the walls on either side (go big or go home.) And I'll be about 16" off the floor. The ceiling and front wall are painted Glidden flat black (a Glidden pre-mixed paint.) It's pretty dark, but does have a slight sheen to it. Now on either side of the room, I have a 24" wide by about 9" deep sofit (also painted black.) My screen will be about 6" from that. My plan is to wrap that in a black fabric as time, money and ambition allow. Obviously if there is a reflection that I find bothersome, time, money and ambition will be located in a hurry.

The wife bought a Tur-Duc-Hen. Hoping we are home to eat it. Her button is about to pop on daughter number 3, like, any day. We gave our company cooking instructions as we may not be there. Not too late to put a dead bolt on my theater... I should put a big "keep out" sign up there before I leave for the hospital.
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post #11 of 29 Old 11-19-2012, 11:02 AM
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Yeah....black paint is not the best choice at all....somehow people have always tended to think it was, seeing it be so dark when lights are up. But in fact, black will shine with a blueish tint.

A ultra dark Gray is worlds better. looks better too when the lights are up.

Those side walls are gonna haunt you. I'd get some Black Velvet and make some nice sidewall treatments. Play your hand right, and they could blend into Hand Pull BV curtains at each side of the Screen to frame the 2.35:1 image AND pull inward to mask off the 16:9 images your bound to have to deal with at times.

http://www.syfabrics.com/View.aspx/Plush-Triple-Velvet/Black-Plush-Triple-Velvet/681/264

The Theater I'm doing at present will have motorized, trigger actuated masking for 16:9

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post #12 of 29 Old 11-19-2012, 11:11 AM - Thread Starter
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Thanks for the tip on the velvet. The long term plan is for fabric on the walls. I know I'm going to get some reflections in the short term from them. They are currently a tan color used in our upstairs. The Depot mixed me up 3 gallons of flat when I asked for eggshell. So I used the last 1.5 gallons (after I found the mistake) in the theater. Long term I'm using a mix of black and gold/tan fabric (GOM "Streetwise") on the walls with some wood trim. One piece at a time. But like you said, I want to put some velvet around the screen and maybe I'll buy enough to just nail some to the walls in the interim.

Do you have a grey you recommend? I don't be changing it in the near term, but just curious what you recommend.
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post #13 of 29 Old 11-19-2012, 12:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by randy98mtu View Post

In the middle of my room, my ceiling is actually 87 or 88" and my screen will be ~ 16" from it. I will be about 8" from the walls on either side (go big or go home.) And I'll be about 16" off the floor. The ceiling and front wall are painted Glidden flat black (a Glidden pre-mixed paint.) It's pretty dark, but does have a slight sheen to it. Now on either side of the room, I have a 24" wide by about 9" deep sofit (also painted black.) My screen will be about 6" from that. My plan is to wrap that in a black fabric as time, money and ambition allow. Obviously if there is a reflection that I find bothersome, time, money and ambition will be located in a hurry.
The wife bought a Tur-Duc-Hen. Hoping we are home to eat it. Her button is about to pop on daughter number 3, like, any day. We gave our company cooking instructions as we may not be there. Not too late to put a dead bolt on my theater... I should put a big "keep out" sign up there before I leave for the hospital.

Sounds way to familiar......My wife and I are going in on Wednesday for kiddo number 3. 2 boys and....I guess we will find out on Wednesday.
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post #14 of 29 Old 11-19-2012, 12:25 PM - Thread Starter
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Congrats!

Just got shipping notification and my projector will be here tomorrow! Now I REALLY need to get my screen figured out tonight! Tomorrow i'll be trying to hang and adjust a projector! I did test out my projector HDMI cable with a 19" TV, so there shouldn't be any surprises there. Should just be a bit of measuring and marking, a couple holes and off to the races.
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post #15 of 29 Old 11-19-2012, 01:32 PM
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Did you need 4 yards of fabric for a screen that big? I like the Idea of the milliskin I wonder if the silver milliskin over white would be brighter then the silver moleskin over white due to the thinner material.
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post #16 of 29 Old 11-19-2012, 04:51 PM - Thread Starter
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Yes I ordered 4 yards of each.

What is the trick to getting the material stretched evenly into this screen base? I'm having a heck of a time with the white. I was also trying to get little feet to stop walking on it so my patience was wearing thin. Hard to find the trick to something when you can't concentrate. I'll go back at it after all the little feet are in bed.
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post #17 of 29 Old 11-19-2012, 07:28 PM - Thread Starter
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So it seems the more you stretch it, the easier it goes in the slot. Without having put an image on the screen or ever having worked with a projector before, I can tell you the Milliskin is far easier to work with. Goes into the slot very easily. My method was to push the top into the slot, then go to the bottom of the screen and push the whole frame away from me (on the carpet.) This put a nice even stretch in the material. Then I stretched it some more and put the bottom in (I worked from the middle out on all 4 sides.) I still need to do a bit more clean up on my trimming. Overall I'm very happy. The only defect I see is the top edge of the bottom 1x4 is visible for some reason. I suppose it's a twist in the board/frame and it's farther forward than the rest of the frame. I'll wait and see if it bothers me.

Just the white, untrimmed:

i-HBmTGqj-L.jpg

The silver waiting on the floor.

i-Q7j4Nsz-L.jpg

And finished. Still needs some trimming/staples in the corners. And needs me to stop being lazy with my camera. The iPhone is so easy. That and my 5D2 is sitting in the car waiting to go into the hospital.

i-sGTdKcJ-L.jpg

Mission accomplished. Tomorrow night is focused on getting the projector hung and some basic alignment/setup completed. Wish me luck, since I've never done this before!!!
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post #18 of 29 Old 11-19-2012, 08:44 PM
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Looks good man. Can you get a photo of the milliskin stretched? What does it look like as far as density to the stretched moleskin?
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post #19 of 29 Old 11-20-2012, 04:04 AM
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Yes...the contact between the top edge of the framing and the Spandex must be slightly higher than the bottom edge...and illustrates the good reason behind having a Stand-off leading edge around the perimeter. It doesn't take much of a difference at all to transfer such an edge to the front.

Isn't the Screen receiving Trim, or is it a "Floater" (DIY speak for "Zero Edge")

Randy.....go have that Kid!

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post #20 of 29 Old 11-20-2012, 04:44 AM - Thread Starter
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Right now it's a floater. I plan to trim around the whole screen to the walls. Not sure if that will make it a floater still. I'm not planning to give the screen its own border.

I think I'm going to try picking up a few 1/4" dowels to tuck in at the bottom of the screen. Hopefully that will solve my problem at the bottom. My plan is for the panels on the side to be in front of the screen to create a border for it, so I can just make those come over about 1/2 to 1 inch all around. That would cover the dowel. Better than coming up 4" on the bottom. I'm greedy. Don't want to give up that much display!

As far as pictures and density/stretch, I didn't look real close. I'm not exactly sure I stretched it enough. Probably not. It looks good though, so I am not inclined to pull it off and start playing around more. I will take more detailed pictures with my real camera later.

Trust me, I'm ready to go have that baby. So is the wife. She thought it was going to be last night the way she was feeling, but here I sit at work again. Soon. The projector is out for delivery today, but I told her I'd gladly postpone that if the baby is coming. I would be more than happy to put it off.
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post #21 of 29 Old 11-20-2012, 04:36 PM
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post #22 of 29 Old 11-22-2012, 05:22 AM - Thread Starter
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Still no picture updates, but after a few nights of using the screen I couldn't be happier. I may experiment with white over silver, but the picture is amazing. Still feel like I have more tweaking to do with the projector. I wish I had a way to give more information to folks related to the milliskin vs moleskin topic. To me the milliskin looks great, but I have nothing to compare it to. I am just thinking I shouldn't have thrown away my scraps of moleskin white. I think I can still get them out of the basement trash to drape in front of the screen for comparison.. smile.gif Overall I have absolutely zero regrets for going the DIY spandex route.
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post #23 of 29 Old 11-22-2012, 07:42 AM
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Forget the crap about the Screen! What about the Wife and Baby?!!!!!


Sheesh....talk about having a fixation about DIY'ing. rolleyes.gif

Oh, that's right. Having a Baby IS all about DIY'ing. First you both pitch in to get the project started.....now the Wife is DIY'ing all by herself.

Well....mostly.wink.gif

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post #24 of 29 Old 11-22-2012, 09:24 AM - Thread Starter
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Duke was the one having his baby yesterday. My wife is still pregnant. Waiting for her to say it's time. December 10th is the latest the doc will let her go.

Just showed the kids Cars 2 in there for the first time. They lasted about 15 minutes before they wanted to go play. They are only 3 and 2, so I didn't expect them to have the attention span to sit there for 90 minutes. The colors really pop on the animated movies though! The wife poked her head in again and complimented me again on how much cooler it is than she had expected.
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post #25 of 29 Old 11-22-2012, 10:05 AM
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Blues Clues... 30 min... and live size. Guaranteed smile.gif

Congrats with the new screen and theater... oh... and baby.

Happy Thanksgiving to all.

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post #26 of 29 Old 11-22-2012, 07:31 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by randy98mtu View Post

Duke was the one having his baby yesterday. .

A historical first! eek.gif

Jeesh....I can't be expected to keep all ya all completely separate. redface.gif

So....Duke..........WASSUP? cool.gif

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post #27 of 29 Old 11-22-2012, 08:24 PM
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We had a historical first for us. Welcomed our last kiddo into the world and it is our first daughter. Emsley 8lb 5oz. My guess was a girl at 8lbs 7oz, I was close. Her oldest brother was a monster at 10lbs 2.6oz. Thanks for inquiring.
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post #28 of 29 Old 11-23-2012, 06:51 AM - Thread Starter
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Congrats Duke! We are still in a holding pattern here. Hope everyone is healthy and happy and things went well!
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post #29 of 29 Old 11-23-2012, 07:04 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Duke Broadway View Post

We had a historical first for us. Welcomed our last kiddo into the world and it is our first daughter. Emsley 8lb 5oz. My guess was a girl at 8lbs 7oz, I was close. Her oldest brother was a monster at 10lbs 2.6oz. Thanks for inquiring.

Congrats fur sure.

My wife pushed 3 Boys out, with me there takin' pictures and helping out (La Boyea births)

1. 9 lbs 8 oz. 23"s
2. 8 lbs 15 oz. 21"s
3. 9 lbs 15 oz. 24"s (...this Guy looked like a body builder...)

No# 1 & No# 3 are both 6' 4" +'ers

Da Runt is just 6' rolleyes.gif

Dear old Dad is just 5' 9.5"
Mommy is 5' 10"

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