A 135" Diagonal 2.35:1 White Milliskin over Light Silver Milliskin Spandex Screen Build. - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 118 Old 02-14-2013, 09:06 AM - Thread Starter
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Just this last weekend, I had the distinct pleasure of making a short drive up into the hinterlands of Central Missouri to help member "monumentally" construct a large Spandex Screen, as well as advise him on a few various sundry aspects of his proposed Theater. Got to indulge in his excellent hospitality, and quaff several Guinness Black Lagers too, which helped with the creativity quotient.

As specified, the object was to construct a 135" diagonal 2.35:1 Screen, with the intention of creating a platform for a Constant Image Height application. Already in hand and waiting to be abused was a Panasonic AE-8000U.

Inasmuch as "monumentally" also wanted to place a "ultra low profile" Martin Logan Center Channel speaker at dead center behind the proposed Screen, I determined that the construction of a shallow Shelf at that location was in order. Also, that the Screen assembly itself needed to stand off the wall a full 4.5" to accommodate the MLCC.

So we both got to work. First... "monumentally" did an excellent job of hand culling some very straight sticks of 2" x 4" x 12" Pine Studs. These were laid out "on Edge" after having Mitered the ends of each. Stud Dimensions were 130.5" "outside" on the Top & Bottom lengths, and 59" "outside" on the sides.

After selecting the "straightest of the straight" timber for the longer lengths, and some good ones for the shorter ends, precise Mitering of the corners allowed for a very square frame. (...after assembly there was a slight twist, but nothing ungovernable...) Below is a diagram showing the method and materials used to join the corners.



Both a 3" Corner Brace "AND" 2.5" Coarse Threaded Screws we used to secure each corner. First the Corner Braces were applied (...after marking and pre drilling guide holes...) to hold the assembly together, then two screws were inserted into each "wide side" of each corner (w/Countersinking also...) to pull each corner tight.

To hang this biggun' onto the wall and accommodate a 4.5" stand off, a "Ledge" bracket was made (2) for the Top & bottom lengths out of 2' x 4" Blocks. The outside "Top Edge" edge of the Hanging Block had to be Flush with that of the Top Edge of the Frame. (see next image)



Here is an image of the Frame hanging on the Framed Wall:



......and another image that shows both the degree of "Stand-Off" from the existing Wall Framing, as well as the Corner Bracket used:



Here is a shot of the completed Frame laying on the plastic covered Floor "Face Up" with the initial "Back Layer" of Light Silver Milliskin draped over:



The Light Silver Milliskin stretched and secured....................:



..................and now the White Milliskin stretched over the Top:



The porosity of the White Milliskin allows a good deal of the Light Silver Milliskin to bleed through, effecting a very light Silvery Hue. That can only be a good thing, as the ensuing images will show.

Here are images with a White Milliskin remnant laying across the finished, White Milliskin surface. You will note the difference in shading.

With Flash:



No Flash:



And now, the first "reveal". The Screen hung in place, with good 'ol "monumentally" standing by it's side.




.................and finally.....Screen shots!

A Menu shot showing bright, accurate color:



Everybody's favorite Blood Sucker:



The Couple:



Bite me......



Some else's Wedding...obviously...:



That's all for now....I only had the DVD at hand to work with, and time was almost gone for me to get started Home.

Comments welcome! Soon, "monumentally" will pop in and both give his impressions on the process, and take on questions, and hopefully later provide a variety of images that don't purvey the Undead. tongue.gif
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post #2 of 118 Old 02-14-2013, 10:16 AM
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Man, that looks awesome....can u share like how much better this is with respect to the Moleskin White over Silver setup? No ' scientific readings' rolleyes.gif, just your 'opinion' would do.

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post #3 of 118 Old 02-14-2013, 11:47 AM - Thread Starter
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The two primary differences are:

Surface Texture: Milliskin is smoother....but just the same, Moleskin isn't very much rougher. Really, the lighter Silver Milliskin is desirable for a Top Coat because it is in fact a lighter shade if Silver/Gray than it's Moleskin cousin. Both "Whites" are very close, but Moleskin's thicker constitution doesn't pass quite as much light through. In in the same respect, the rearward layer of "any" silver won't have as much bearing on how the "white" Top surface reacts to projected light as does the thinner Millskin.

To be absolutely definitive in this, direct side -by- side comparisons....FULL SIZED preferably....would need to be made.

The second is cost. A $2.00 difference per yard in the Milliskin's favor. Not a bundle of difference.....but still.

Tossing in a third for good measure, the Milliskin stretches out easily and far. It is sublimely easy to get smooth and flat, even pulling out set-in wrinkles.


One important word of advice to all. When ordering "ANY" Spandex for DIY Screen use, request that it be sent on a Roll. Otherwise, they will stuff any order at/under 4 yards in a Box.

I ordered "monumentally's" to come on a Roll and there was nary a single wrinkle in all 8 yards (2 x 4 yards)

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post #4 of 118 Old 02-14-2013, 11:54 AM - Thread Starter
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Oh yeah.....,

Here is a shot of the amount of light bleed through with two layers...white & silver. A pretty good case for using the thicker Moleskin in either White or Silver as the respective backing for it's opposite.



Looking...the dark vertical bars are the Studs behind the screen.

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post #5 of 118 Old 02-14-2013, 01:23 PM
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What do you thing about the 2 layer of spandex over the boc sheet?
Have anyone else try this method for blocking the bleed?
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post #6 of 118 Old 02-14-2013, 01:52 PM
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If you were using boc as the backing you would only need a single layer of spandex over it, but you would lose the acoustic transparency, which is the main reason for using spandex. That may be changing, though, since spandex is easy to obtain, easy to work with and cheap. It is <1 gain, but that isn't much of an issue if you have a high lumen, good contrast projector.
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post #7 of 118 Old 02-14-2013, 04:33 PM - Thread Starter
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Yeah, but if one employs BOC, first it will require 10x the effort to stretch it across a frame. After that, it's easy enough to spray on a coating that would trounce anything Spandex can offer.

However if painting is not an option, then Spandex offers up one of the most finest surface you can find in any cloth....including coated BOC. Given the choice between BOC and Spandex as a surface, what with BOC being .85 gain, about identical to White Spandex, it would be IMOHO the "go to" choice.

...........if you have the lumens....and/or your screen is small enough.

Everyone be on notice...I'm not a Spandex Fan Boy. But under the right circumstances I would never hesitate to use it again.

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post #8 of 118 Old 02-14-2013, 04:34 PM - Thread Starter
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Yeah, but if one employs BOC, first it will require 10x the effort to stretch it across a frame. After that, it's easy enough to spray on a coating that would trounce anything Spandex can offer.

However if painting is not an option, then Spandex offers up one of the most finest surface you can find in any cloth....including coated BOC. AT properties notwithstanding. Given the choice between BOC and Spandex as a surface, what with BOC being .85 gain, about identical to White Spandex, the latter would be IMOHO the "go to" choice if backed with Silver Spandex..

...........if you have the lumen output....and/or your screen is small enough.

Everyone be on notice...I'm not a Spandex Fan Boy. But under the right circumstances I would never hesitate to use it again.

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post #9 of 118 Old 02-15-2013, 12:28 PM
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Talk about perfect timing... I've been pouring over these forums for ideas to upgrade my current HT. Reading and looking at all sorts of options, but I keep coming back to a 54" CIH AT CinemaScope screen and the Panasonic AE-8000U. My biggest concern was what a zoomed in picture would look like. From your pics, I don't think I have too much to worry about.. This is my first projection project and I would love some more details regarding your build.

What is the room size and the projector throw distance? The pics look awesome, have you had a chance to see how the screen holds up with some ambient light? smile.gif

Regarding Materials: Why did you choose 2x4's? Screen size or was it just easier to incorporate with the rest of the construction? I am thinking about using 1x3" but not sure what wood to use... any recommendations? pine/poplar?

Looks like you stapled the fabric to the frame? Works for me, can you describe the technique you used to stretch and staple? Did you start in the middle of the top and bottom... and work your way to out to each end?

MM - you mentioned " the lighter Silver Milliskin is desirable for a Top Coat because it is in fact a lighter shade if Silver/Gray than it's Moleskin cousin. Both "Whites" are very close, but Moleskin's thicker constitution doesn't pass quite as much light through. In in the same respect, the rearward layer of "any" silver won't have as much bearing on how the "white" Top surface reacts to projected light as does the thinner Millskin."

You also mention the white milliskin is close to BOC (if I read it right). After seeing this install and from your comments above, do you think the Silver Milliskin over a Silver Moleskin would a great option for this projector in a room with some ambient light? I know that a very relative question... I'll post my room details on a new thread and would appreciate your feedback.

Thanks and can't wait to see more "progress" pics!
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post #10 of 118 Old 02-15-2013, 02:40 PM
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Poplar is the usual hardwood of choice. I used 1x3" for my frame but it seems that most people use 1x4" poplar for their frames. Regardless of the wood you want straight pieces without twists. I used Moleskin Matte Silver over white and I am happy with it using an Epson 8100 with a 13 foot throw on a 120" diagonal 2.35:1 screen. I may switch it around to use the white over silver since my room is completely light controlled. The way it is now I can watch TV readily with wall sconces on and dimmed slightly. The screen above was stapled on the edge, but on mine I wrapped the spandex around the frame and stapled on the back. A lot of folks have used the screen tight hardware for attaching spandex, which has the advantage of allowing the spandex to be easily removed without removing staples or tearing the spandex.
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post #11 of 118 Old 02-15-2013, 04:19 PM
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thanks aharjr143 - I appreciate your reply and perspective! That's pretty much what I want to do... fully light controlled room, but, in the interest of domestic tranquility, some programming really needs to have the lights up a bit. How did you measure for your frame. Is the entire frame constructed to 120"? or is the frame larger than 120'... so the screen size itself, is "inside" the frame? I think this would let me attach a black cosmetic frame the same thickiness as the screen frame. My searching has pulled up some nice pics, just nothing describing the actual measurements.

I've been reading about the use of screen tight... sounds great... but what happens at the corners? don't you end up with a bunch of material? Maybe it just doesn't matter or get in the way of hanging the screen. Obviously, I've never tried anything like this.
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post #12 of 118 Old 02-18-2013, 06:50 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PixelPusher View Post

thanks aharjr143 - I appreciate your reply and perspective! That's pretty much what I want to do... fully light controlled room, but, in the interest of domestic tranquility, some programming really needs to have the lights up a bit. How did you measure for your frame. Is the entire frame constructed to 120"? or is the frame larger than 120'... so the screen size itself, is "inside" the frame? I think this would let me attach a black cosmetic frame the same thickiness as the screen frame. My searching has pulled up some nice pics, just nothing describing the actual measurements.

The frame is constructed to the size of the screen unless you are attaching a border, then the frame needs to be oversized to accommodate the border overlap. In my case I was doing a 120" diagonal screen in a 2.35:1 aspect ratio so my frame was 111x47".

I didn't use the screen tight but I imagine the issue is the same. I used some information that was drilled into me growing up by my mother when being taught to make my bed, namely "hospital bed corners". I did the hospital bed corners thing and just stapled it down. Another option would be to staple from each direction and simply trim the excess. That is a little more dangerous because the spandex is under tension and if you trim too much you could wind up with an issue.
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post #13 of 118 Old 02-19-2013, 07:39 PM
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Is light silver milliskin now the go to over sliver moleskin as a topcoat for ambient light builds?
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post #14 of 118 Old 02-19-2013, 09:30 PM
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What are you guys using produce the 2:35x1 ratio is some kind of lens? If so what lens any links be nice. One more thing where do you get this material at the spandex im talking about
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post #15 of 118 Old 02-20-2013, 04:59 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Duke Broadway View Post

Is light silver milliskin now the go to over sliver moleskin as a topcoat for ambient light builds?

IMO yes. Smoother weave, good shade of Silver Gray, less expensive too.
Quote:
Originally Posted by cptcrzunch View Post

What are you guys using produce the 2:35x1 ratio is some kind of lens? If so what lens any links be nice. One more thing where do you get this material at the spandex im talking about

No Lens. Some PJs have a feature called Lens Memory which can recal specific Format sizes, and automatically adjust the image size to such. That requires a PJ with motorized Zoom & Focus. In this Thread the PJ used is a Panasonic PT-AE8000u

The Spandex source links:

http://spandexworld.com/c3/catalog/product/5954

http://spandexworld.com/c3/catalog/product/795

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post #16 of 118 Old 02-20-2013, 10:25 AM
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How did you attach the frame to the "ledge" 2x4 blocks? I see there are blocks on top and bottom. Did you measure carefully enough to be able to pressure mount it or does the frame just sit on the top blocks? Is it secured at all?

Overall this looked pretty simple, how long would you estimate it took?

Great build, great tutorial. This will come in handy for tons of people.

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post #17 of 118 Old 02-20-2013, 12:05 PM - Thread Starter
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1 screw (2.5") driven in at an angle through the rear edge of the Fame and into the ledge block.

Zat's it.

total build time......7 hours

Thank you for the Kudos. smile.gif

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post #18 of 118 Old 02-20-2013, 01:37 PM
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That's a big/bad ass screen. Nicely done!

MM, did you say your customer/client is going to put speakers behind that screen?

Did anyone test the AT properties on the Milliskin? Tux's tests on the Moleskin wasn't promising as an AT solution.
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post #19 of 118 Old 02-20-2013, 06:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MississippiMan View Post

IMO yes. Smoother weave, good shade of Silver Gray, less expensive too.
No Lens. Some PJs have a feature called Lens Memory which can recal specific Format sizes, and automatically adjust the image size to such. That requires a PJ with motorized Zoom & Focus. In this Thread the PJ used is a Panasonic PT-AE8000u

The Spandex source links:

http://spandexworld.com/c3/catalog/product/5954

http://spandexworld.com/c3/catalog/product/795

Good to know. Sometimes I feel like the moleskin is just a little to dark. Gonna stick with it for a good 6 months. We will see what happens after that.
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post #20 of 118 Old 03-03-2013, 04:50 PM
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Are you guys painting the frames on your spandex builds? I I'm not building mine now and wondering if I should
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post #21 of 118 Old 03-04-2013, 06:51 AM
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I didn't paint my frame. I don't think it is necessary if you are using two layers of spandex. With a single layer the frame showed through.
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post #22 of 118 Old 03-04-2013, 06:55 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ahajr143 View Post

I didn't paint my frame. I don't think it is necessary if you are using two layers of spandex. With a single layer the frame showed through.

thx!
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post #23 of 118 Old 03-04-2013, 07:01 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ScAndal View Post

Are you guys painting the frames on your spandex builds? I I'm not building mine now and wondering if I should

The Frame shown in this Thread was not painted. It received a bottom layer of Light Silver and a Top layer of White, and under projected light there seemed to be no bleed through of the underlying 1.5" Wood Frame, nor any acertainable difference between the brightness of the image inside the Fame and that which was showing "on top" the Frame.

The suggestion to use a layer of a Black "something or other" behind a AT screen harkens back to the use of conventional, single Layered, perforated AT Screen material. Which in fact was erroneous because the brighter screen surface when combined with a much darker rear surface only accented the difference between the perforated holes and the reflective screen surface. That caused "Morie" artifacts...and real drawback to AT screens in the past. Using no backing but a blacked out rear area was at least as bad a choice, because then the light that was lost through the open perforation reduced the gain over the perforated area and created the same issue. Those who really had the correct grasp on things simply painted their Speakers to reduce any tendency for the light that made it through a AT Screen from illuminating the Speaker cabinets / Grills.

It is the extreme "airiness" of Spandex that makes it such a good substitution for conventional Mfg AT Screen material. In fact, a few Vendors have sold Spandex as Screen material for a while (...we won't mention them...the Craven opportunists!...) Also, there is no detrimental aspect to having a White Spandex backing under a white or Silver Top layer. Some have taken the stance that you do not want "ANY" light returning to, or existing under a layer of Spandex. That's pure Bunk, based on supposition, and offered up by the same people who never could get their heads wrapped around the fact that attenuated light, shifted down in both intensity and shading, when recombined to the light existing on a overlying translucent surface, will only help to reduce lost light through absorption, as well as enhance color saturation that would be reduced by such loss, and enhance contrast by adding a darker, more impenetrable base.

ahajr143, ya dun beat me to the draw again. Well...I may be slow, but once I pull out my Shotgun, I can fill 'em up with a lot more lead. tongue.gif

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post #24 of 118 Old 03-04-2013, 10:19 AM
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I'm considering painting the frame because of the changes in humidity that happens so offten in a basement. What do you think?
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post #25 of 118 Old 03-04-2013, 10:28 AM - Thread Starter
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I'm considering painting the frame because of the changes in humidity that happens so offten in a basement. What do you think?

Ugh.
I hate painted Trim. Even the very best type Black Paint and a superb job of applying such cannot even be considered as being on the same Planet as the results you'll get with Black Velvet wrapped Trim.

Again.............................Ugh.

If you use the Pre-Primed Mdf baseboard sold at Home Depot, you can forget about any warp-age concerns

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post #26 of 118 Old 03-04-2013, 10:32 AM
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I'm referring to panting the frame to keep the moisture out. I do plan on using velvet, but at this time, I'm trying to put all my ducks in a row before I start building.
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post #27 of 118 Old 03-04-2013, 10:43 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jrguzmanr View Post

I'm referring to panting the frame to keep the moisture out. I do plan on using velvet, but at this time, I'm trying to put all my ducks in a row before I start building.

I realize that, and alluded to such in my final comment above. Mdf is much, much less prone to absorbing humidity to the point of swelling and warping. (...it doesn't do as good if immersed though... rolleyes.gif ) Pine on the other hand will absorb moisture from the air, and as it goes through repeated humidity-type wettings and dryings, it will warp and twist like crazy. As such it must be sealed far mo' bedder than Mdf Trim.

The Base @ HD is already Primed on one side, the side facing out, which is the only side you need to be concerned about. However if you put primer on the rear...your not hurtin' nothin'

You will find that the thickness of the Primer on the Mdf is quite thin. It's there mostly to prep the surface for any eventual paint to be applied. If you decide to apply more paint, you should also apply the same amount to the reverse side to prevent contraction from drying on one side from pulling the material into a mild Bow. In truth, if the Trim is to be set into place using Finish Nails set into the Mdf-Wall / and nail-set below the velvet layer, warping is almost going to be impossible.

To quote James T. Kirk;
"I'm laughing at the superior intellect"

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post #28 of 118 Old 03-04-2013, 11:02 AM
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ok, now I'm officially confused.....are you saying to build the frame from Mdf? I was going to use poplar 1x4 (or 1x3).
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post #29 of 118 Old 03-04-2013, 11:21 AM
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The frame would be poplar or some other hardwood. MM is talking about MDF for the velvet wrapped trim.
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post #30 of 118 Old 03-04-2013, 12:22 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ahajr143 View Post

The frame would be poplar or some other hardwood. MM is talking about MDF for the velvet wrapped trim.

Bullseye.

Dat's sum mitte fyne shootin' dere, Pard!

Far as I know of, ain't nobody found a way to directly overlap Spandex with Velvet on the same Frame. I thought fer certain sure we were talkin' 'bout a "Frame" for the Spandex and "Trim" being wholly separate.

Not that it might not indeed be possible to integrate it, if you reverse-wrap the spandex so it is on the back of the Frame, much like you see in a Commercially Mfg Fixed Screen.

But that would also entail dealing with other issues, paramount being you could not have any Centralized supports....the depth of the Frame can...and will create a shadow along at least two edges unless the PJ's lens is almost centered withing the screen.....oh.....don't make me go on.....it can be done, but you don't wanna go there.

So just how were you thinking you would do it? Might be something new to learn here.....

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