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post #1 of 452 Old 03-31-2008, 10:34 PM - Thread Starter
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Well, after much anticipation, I finally managed to get my theater under way. While I still dont know "exactly" what I will have in the end, I at least have a good idea, and sometimes that's all that one needs.

I want a theater room in which I can enjoy my NHL Center Ice all winter long, and partially into summer, as well as movies (blu-ray now), and then another room where we can sit and play cards and what ever else.

To get things started, the lady and I just moved into a newer (16 yo.) colonial, and the biggest gripe I have is the stairs right in the middle of the basement. It limited me a bit, but in the end I will end up with 2 rooms. One 20x15 (theater) and another 11x20 (card area/fridge). the rooms are split by support beams in the middle.

My construction ability is none, so I originally thought to just contract out the framing, electrical and drywall, and do the low voltage myself. Well, after months of reading, I convinced myself that I might be able to do this myself. So the decision came, whats the easiest way for me to do this? and I ended up deciding to go with steel instead of wood.

I figure it is easier for me by myself to work with the steel and I can order it all at once, and not have to worry about anything warping if it lays around too long.

So, on good friday my shipment came, and I hauled everything down to the basement, and that was it, the rest of the weekend was shot. I had a busy week last week, so I was not able to start until this past Saturday. Both nervous and confused, I tried figuring out what I was about to do, and as soon as I hit the power hammer for the first time I was into it. --I guess I lied, I actually started Thursday night last week because I just had to try the power hammer, I nailed down 2 runners and called it quits...

Well, after the weekend, I look back and say I managed a bit more than I would have thought, but i have something now and i will take it from there.

As I go along, I have no idea what kind of pace I will have, but from the looks and sounds of it from reading, many folks move fairly slow. It will be tough in the summer to get lots done, but I will do what I can and call it a day...

Some before shots:









The Layout...(I hate drawing)
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post #2 of 452 Old 03-31-2008, 10:35 PM - Thread Starter
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Then some demo photos:






and where I am at tonight:



I am going to have a plumber move this water meter back a few inches to I can frame my wall...he has to replace the main shutoff anyway so he said it is no big deal

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post #3 of 452 Old 03-31-2008, 10:35 PM - Thread Starter
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And one last photo:
-note, in my haste, I forgot about this window, and now I dont know what to do about it. Do I go back and frame around it and put in curtains, or do I bury it behind my wall forever. the wall where this is, is going to be the screen wall, so it is tough to decide what to do with it... the track in the middle intersecting the wall is from the old drop ceiling so it will go away...


In using steel I have one major concern, rattle as a result of Bass. I know very few people use steel here, so it is tough, but because I wont have drywall on the backside of some exterior walls, I dont know what to expect. I will have insulation. I thought about screwing the backs of the studs to the track as tell, but it is tough to get in there with the screw gun, so I thought tonight of the idea to get tape foam insulation stuff and put it at the backside to at least reduce any possible rattle from where the stud meets the track in the back. However, if anyone else has done steel like this and has other ideas, I am all ears. (what i really want to hear is that even if I dont screw the back side of the studs as well, I dont have to worry about rattle... )
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post #4 of 452 Old 04-01-2008, 07:13 AM
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Quote:


To get things started, the lady and I just moved into a newer (16 yo.) colonial, and the biggest gripe I have is the stairs right in the middle of the basement. It limited me a bit, but in the end I will end up with 2 rooms. One 20x15 (theater) and another 11x20 (card area/fridge). the rooms are split by support beams in the middle.

I am in the same boat. 16yr colonial with stairs smack dab in the middle of the basement. Have you drawn up any floorplans yet? I'd really like to see them as I try to figure out what I am going to do in my basement. (See link to thread down below in my signature).

As for the steel studs, can't help you there, but if it were me, I would be very leery of putting a permanent wall over a window unless you are absolutely positively sure that things never gonna leak....
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post #5 of 452 Old 04-01-2008, 08:18 AM
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Smakovits: does that basement have any emergency exit other than the stairs?
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post #6 of 452 Old 04-01-2008, 08:31 AM - Thread Starter
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spartan, i had some plans, however, since I made them things completely changed, so the setup is completely different now. I wanto to try and redo some plans, so I have them, and then I can show them to you.

Yeah, I know, egress window...definately just the stairs at this point. I have thought about the egress window and while it isnt in the plans right now, I am considering it. I havent ruled it out, but right now it isnt on budget either.
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post #7 of 452 Old 04-01-2008, 11:22 AM
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Originally Posted by smakovits View Post

I have thought about the egress window and while it isnt in the plans right now, I am considering it. I havent ruled it out, but right now it isnt on budget either.

Then at least make sure you have an interconnected smoke alarm from upstairs to downstairs even while you are in this construction phase.
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post #8 of 452 Old 04-01-2008, 11:41 AM - Thread Starter
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is that a special smoke alarm system I would have to buy then, or is it something that can be rigged up with normal smoke alarms and some low voltage wire?
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post #9 of 452 Old 04-01-2008, 11:54 AM
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I think the majority of smoke detectors sold today are designed to be interconnected due to the requirement of current building codes.

In new construction you take a run of 2 conductor wire plus ground to the first detector, then run 3 conductor wire to the remaining and Daisy chain them all together. The extra wire is used to interconnect. I'm guessing you could do it with low voltage but I'm not sure. They also make a wireless version for retrofits.

http://www.buyhardwaresupplies.com/?...Number=5369558
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post #10 of 452 Old 04-01-2008, 12:41 PM
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Check out my thread for my bar top theme with a tribute to the Penguins.

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post #11 of 452 Old 04-01-2008, 12:45 PM - Thread Starter
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might have to look into the wireless ones for the time being, 100 bucks now is better than 4k, and then later on down the road I can get the egress window.
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post #12 of 452 Old 04-01-2008, 12:47 PM - Thread Starter
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Netko, I love the Penguins Theme, I am a Gretzky guy myself, but thats not to take anything away from the old 66. I saw him at the US Open last year and wsas still in awe. The only difference if it was gretzky is that I probably would have wet my pants too...

I have a bunch of Mcfalane figures and then 2 jerseys I need signed and framed by the tiome this project is complete
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post #13 of 452 Old 04-14-2008, 01:40 PM
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I'll be keeping an eye on this thread to see how it turns out. what kind of equipment do you plan on putting in your theater?

Check out Dinger's
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post #14 of 452 Old 04-17-2008, 03:13 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dinger23 View Post

I'll be keeping an eye on this thread to see how it turns out. what kind of equipment do you plan on putting in your theater?

Equipment wise I bought way early on the onkyo 805. By the time I get to use it it will be close to a year...I wanted to upgrade my receiver, then I moved and 1 thing led to another and so i got to use it for about a month in a stereo configuration.

speakers: front l/r - Klipsch RF-82s
Center - Klipsch RC-62
Side and rear Surround - Klipsch RF-62's
Sub - Polk 404 - I think this is the last one of the good ones before they started going down hill, or so I have been told.

- I will get some Blu-ray player, no clue as to which yet.
- Possibly some gaming consoles, everyone speaks of the Wii these days but who knows, thats down the road.
- Dish Network 722
- Leaning toward the Carada Screens.
- Projector is still up in the air, between the Epson 1080, Sony VW40 and the Panny AE2000

Other than that, lighting will be done via a grafik eye possible 6 zone.
Remote Wise right now for some reason I am justifying the 1k it will cost for a MX3000 or maybe the like 980 (the color one)
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post #15 of 452 Old 04-17-2008, 03:21 PM - Thread Starter
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The window framed properly:


Electrical Panel:


Under Duct Framing:




Front wall under beam (I never thought I would be firing nails into a steel beam) I used Liquid nails as adhesive as well to add a little extra...


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post #16 of 452 Old 04-17-2008, 03:59 PM
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you're braver than i was. there was noooooo way i was going to shoot nails into my i-beam. i just used the heavy duty liquid nails and it once it was all constructed it was strong as a rock.

fwiw i haven't had any problems with bass rattling any of my steel. my sconces on the other hand...

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post #17 of 452 Old 04-18-2008, 03:50 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scissorfightX View Post

you're braver than i was. there was noooooo way i was going to shoot nails into my i-beam. i just used the heavy duty liquid nails and it once it was all constructed it was strong as a rock.

fwiw i haven't had any problems with bass rattling any of my steel. my sconces on the other hand...

Believe me, I was afraid too, heck, I still am. Plus it is 100x harder to hit the nailer upwards than it is to hit it down on the floor.
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post #18 of 452 Old 05-05-2008, 09:49 PM - Thread Starter
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I never thought I would say this, but I officially hate nice weather. It simply means that instead of being able to work on my theater, I have to do yard work and other such manual labor around the house. I was also out of town one weekend, so that didnt help, but this past weekend I made sure that I would get down in to the basement to get some things done. It wasnt much since Saturday was wasted doing chores (of course)...I went ahead and ripped down all of the drop ceiling supports, taking down all the fluorescent lights with it. I replaced the lights with some normal 100 watt ones about 2 less fixtures than the 4 bulb fluorescents that I took down and man can I say how different the light is. mostly there is just less light. I can still work but I think I will be forced to add at least one more at one of the ends. removing all the t bar things really opens the room up more, adding the few inches of ceiling height makes a huge difference.

I also built one of the two rear walls, 2 because there is one on each side of the staircase. The one that I built is the one which wont have a door because I havent yet decided on 30x80 or 32x80 doors. However, I am thinking 32x80 since I have the room and they are the exact same price...

These next bunch of weekends are packed full of stuff so it really is going to slow me down...I hate it and I wish for lots of rain, especially if the lawn is mowed, because then I dont have to worry about cutting wet grass. We will see what I get to, but I hope to have all the framing done sooner than later. I want to finish by the time the buckeyes hit the field in the fall, but at the current rate things might be pushed to the Michigan game, although I am planning to go to that one so it doesnt even matter there... We will see, at least it gives me something to shoot for.

The one thing that is really beginning to bother me though is the water department. I am still waiting to re-plumb my water meter so it fits in the wall, but they have to schedule a dig because they cant find the shutoff so instead they have to dig up my tree lawn now to find it, and I have been waiting over a month for this to happen... Other than that, not much is really new, I am chugging along slowly and I am starting to think about ordering some wires...I need to find a projector too...

2 things though. I have ordered from mono price a few times now, and have been happy, but what do people think about blue jean cable? is it the same thing, better worse? I always get confused at their site and go back to monoprice...

second, is there really a future at say 9.1 or anything of the sorts, I am going 7.1 but should there be any real consideration for wiring for future at all? I have now ideal if it will happen any time soon but I figure if I have the chance to do it now I should consider it...

and maybe 3 things...is there any real difference if I were to run rg6 for my coax sub run vs something pre-made such as http://www.monoprice.com/products/pr...seq=1&format=2 also, are coaxial sub runs affected by distance at all or is that mainly just video?

and while it will be argued, from what I think I gather on this site, if using wall plates, audio goes unaffected, while video can take a visual hit in some cases...
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post #19 of 452 Old 05-06-2008, 06:09 PM
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Quote:
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...I havent yet decided on 30x80 or 32x80 doors. However, I am thinking 32x80 since I have the room and they are the exact same price...

Definitely go for the wider doors. I don't know if there's an accoustic issue but there will definitely be a furniture issue at some point, unless you want to frame your rooms after your stuff is in place.
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post #20 of 452 Old 05-06-2008, 06:38 PM
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and maybe 3 things...is there any real difference if I were to run rg6 for my coax sub run vs something pre-made such as http://www.monoprice.com/products/pr...seq=1&format=2 also, are coaxial sub runs affected by distance at all or is that mainly just video?

The cable you linked to is an RG6 Coax cable, just made with RCA ends for exactly the reason you are intending to use it for. Based upon my research, the one really nice thing about coax is the minimal affect due to the length of the run. Of course, the bad part about coax is that the signal will be "phase shifted" due to the capacitance of the cable design. With subs, this usually isn't an issue since they hopefully have a phase adjustment. You don't want to run Coax for normal speakers, however.

The room is looking good. My project already came to a slow down as well. Can't wait for winter
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post #21 of 452 Old 05-07-2008, 12:09 PM - Thread Starter
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Definitely go for the wider doors. I don't know if there's an accoustic issue but there will definitely be a furniture issue at some point, unless you want to frame your rooms after your stuff is in place.

Definately not, I will do 32" doors. Looked at a few yesterday at Lowes...the only thing I couldnt figure out is what is the difference between a split frame door vs the smooth frame I believe. The guy there said it meant the one is a thicker frame and not worth it...for 30 bucks if thats the difference I guess it is definitely not worth it

Quote:
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The cable you linked to is an RG6 Coax cable, just made with RCA ends for exactly the reason you are intending to use it for. Based upon my research, the one really nice thing about coax is the minimal affect due to the length of the run. Of course, the bad part about coax is that the signal will be "phase shifted" due to the capacitance of the cable design. With subs, this usually isn't an issue since they hopefully have a phase adjustment. You don't want to run Coax for normal speakers, however.

The room is looking good. My project already came to a slow down as well. Can't wait for winter

I was thinking about buying a box of cable and running it to length and then use one of those adapters to make it RCA, but I guess to minimize hassle I will just get the ones with the ends already on there and just coil any extra cable and tuck it out of the way.
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post #22 of 452 Old 05-08-2008, 08:53 AM - Thread Starter
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Nothing is greater than watching a nail pop out through a Steel I-Beam. Until now, most of my nails only penetrated my I-Beam a little bit, but last night I wanted to finish attaching the runners for my wall...This time I was a little more confident with the hammer than the first time I was firing into the I-Beam, I wasnt as hesitant to hit the thing. So I again used some liquid nails, gripped the thing to the beam and began firing away...the first shot was lame, just like last time, barely in the steel. but then the next shot fired clear into the beam. 3/4" pins poking out the top side of the beam, it was great, it certainly put a smile on my face...

Now granted it is no jack hammer or Bobcat, but it is the most powerful "tool" that I have used in my time...

Now just a question about acoustical effect...the way the room will be configured, the stairs will make up the middle of the back wall. then on the two sides, I am recessing the wall back some 2 feet to allow me to put my speakers there and to bring the couch that much farther from the screen. My question is, will these cove like spaces cause echo or other such acoustical issues?
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post #23 of 452 Old 05-10-2008, 04:09 PM
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Very cool, more of a NCAA fan than NHL, (currently at U of Wisconsin... no WI NHL teams ), but I love the hockey theme!

PS3: IceBadger
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post #24 of 452 Old 05-11-2008, 11:41 PM
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very very sweet man-i'm a die hard pens fan as well so i can truly appreciate what you're doing here. you live in pittsburgh? i'm completing a home theater right now myself, although nothing on the scale that you're doing. consists of a panny th-pz85u, onkyo 705, armstrong pace hd dvr, ps3, 360, svs sbs-01 speakers, apc h10blk power conditioner. nothing too fancy, but it gets the job done in my apt.

how long do you think it'll be until you finish it? i'm real real anxious to see it completed. keep up the good work!

on a side note, how bout the pens tonight? controlling the series 2 games to none. i love it! how kick ass would a sweep of the flyers be?

"it is the mac-daddy of all centers."
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post #25 of 452 Old 05-13-2008, 01:07 PM - Thread Starter
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very very sweet man-i'm a die hard pens fan as well so i can truly appreciate what you're doing here. you live in pittsburgh? i'm completing a home theater right now myself, although nothing on the scale that you're doing. consists of a panny th-pz85u, onkyo 705, armstrong pace hd dvr, ps3, 360, svs sbs-01 speakers, apc h10blk power conditioner. nothing too fancy, but it gets the job done in my apt.

how long do you think it'll be until you finish it? i'm real real anxious to see it completed. keep up the good work!

on a side note, how bout the pens tonight? controlling the series 2 games to none. i love it! how kick ass would a sweep of the flyers be?


I definitely want to see a short series, watch the F-ers be done, they have gotten much farther than they should have already. I actually got to goto the game on Friday, it was awesome. Hockey is the greatest sport ever, and the only reason people hate it and say it sucks is simply because they dont understand it, and they can't follow the play. I can sit there in person or on TV and I pretty much know exactly what is going on. the haters on the other hand are confused because all they are trying to do is follow the puck as opposed to watching "the play" and understanding how thing thing develop. but enough of that...I am ready for tonights game, it will be a rowdy crowd but a few quick goals early will take them right out of it.

Got a few more things finished, such as 2 doorways framed minus the wood. I need my brother-in-law to return the saw so I can cut those. Otherwise, it is done. the doorway to the unfinished side is actually just high enough to get 82" under the beam. I didnt realize it was so close, but it will work and thats all I care about. The counter wall section is also finished, now I await finishing that, but I have some time. The bathroom I want to put in also needs to be designed. I am thinking 5x8 will be the finished size, but that is still in the works, it is just hard to figure out how to design it when the brain is thinking theater...

so here are a few new pics showing the newly finished items:




Until the bathroom is decided I think I am pretty much ready for electrical and wiring. I cant decide if I want 6 or 8 cans in the man theater room. also, are sconce's really necessary? are they mainly for effect? how many outlets is safe per wall, 1 or 2?

also, when it comes to electrical for the projector, do most just use a standard 3 prong computer like plug? I am curious because people talk about needing battery backup for the projector, and I dont understand how you can do that if you just wire an outlet right next to the projector. I figure you need to run a plug somewhere unless you hide the battery in the ceiling or I suppose in a hush box like enclosure.

Now the fun part. I want to finalize the projector so I can prepare accordingly. I am undecided between the Epson 1080 UB, Panny AE2000, and sony vw40.

Because I will want to watch sports which I assume will result in some light, I figure the Sony will struggle since it isnt as bright, but I could be wrong. when it comes to the Epson, i cant justify the extra 1k for the Pro so that brings me to the AE2000. For some reason this is where I keep ending up, however I cant make up my mind, therefore, I am looking for a little push. Anything that helps me make that final decision. Or due to the fact that I am a little ways off yet, do I wait and see if something new comes out in the next few months...?
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post #26 of 452 Old 05-20-2008, 09:02 AM - Thread Starter
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HVAC....when considering the right amount of vents, is one vent enough for a 14x20 room? I then have another vent in the attached room where the wall is open which is 11x19 and then there is a vent down at the area at the bottom of the steps.

My main concern would be the main theater room staying cool or warm depending on the season. I am always hot, so I need it cool in the summer, and the wife-to-be is always cold so I need the room the be warm in the winter...I know when I was working down there I always thought it was fairly comfortable, but if I need to plan for baseboard heat I can... However, before doing anything I figured I would ask if you guys thought 1 vent per area would be enough, I start getting worried when I see people with 4 vents in a similar sized theater.
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post #27 of 452 Old 05-21-2008, 09:07 PM
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GO PENS!

I have one vent in my ENTIRE basement and it works just fine. The lights will give off heat too. The one thing you will notice is that at the start of winter it will be very nice in the basement. Over time as the block starts to cool off it will get a bit cooler. But that will stay way into summer when it starts to get hot.

Just insulate the walls and put up a vapor sheet.

GO PENS!!!
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post #28 of 452 Old 05-23-2008, 06:33 PM
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Every "hockey haven" needs a set of goal lights... I am building a nice set based on what verizon center used to have (GO CAPS!) as part of an ambient light setup... i will take pictures when i'm done. the idea of it could be as cheap as 30 bucks but my costs are well over 100 so far..

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post #29 of 452 Old 05-26-2008, 11:06 AM
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Originally Posted by bucnasty View Post

Every "hockey haven" needs a set of goal lights... I am building a nice set based on what verizon center used to have (GO CAPS!) as part of an ambient light setup... i will take pictures when i'm done. the idea of it could be as cheap as 30 bucks but my costs are well over 100 so far..

A framed Ovechkin jersey would look good
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post #30 of 452 Old 05-26-2008, 08:41 PM
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Install some synthetic ice surface on one side of the area so you can practice slap shots. Better yet make it look like 1/3 of a rink!


That would be BALLER status.
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