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post #91 of 1592 Old 07-31-2008, 05:55 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by BIGmouthinDC View Post

Do a search on Mini-Split air conditioners. The Mitsubishi MR Slim line are pretty quiet.

Thanks Big, I would have never known to search on mini-split. It turns out that the Sanyo the GC recommended is indeed a mini-split. Need to do some additional research but I will likely go with two mini-split units instead of that other window unit.
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post #92 of 1592 Old 08-01-2008, 07:24 PM - Thread Starter
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Has anybody installed the MR Slim unit that is the ceiling recessed casette series? Dimensions (37 3/8x37 3/8x11 3/8) seem fairly large so GC would have to build a cavity inbetween the ceiling joists. Or any thoughts on the ceiling suspended series? I'm a bit reluctant to do the wall units since the vent is very large.
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post #93 of 1592 Old 08-11-2008, 02:55 PM - Thread Starter
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In an attempt to refresh this thread to pre-loss, BIG had asked what I intended to do with my center channel speaker, mentioning that optimal placement would be above the screen.

Since my drop ceiling is only 8' or 96" my only option is to go with the center channel below the screen. My 110" screen measures approximately 104"Wx59"L, leaving me with only 37". I used the riser height calculator and came up with the screen hanging 33" from the floor, with 4" on the top, resulting in a 9 3/4" riser.

The width of my room will be 14' or 168". With the 104" taken up by the screen and frame, I've only got 64" left, so 32" for each side column. The Triad In-Room LCRs measure 10 3/4"Wx29"Hx11 1/16"D while the Powersub (2x) measures 17 1/4"Wx18 1/8"Lx15 3/4"D. Seems like that there will be more than ample space (below screen or behind columns) to hide the three fronts and one or two subs.
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post #94 of 1592 Old 08-11-2008, 05:42 PM - Thread Starter
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Just realized that I lost a whole bunch of pics as well, documenting my inspiration for the HT build.

Uptown's





Big's





Brit's





Chinadog's






Hoping to employ the design of Uptown's with a mix of the other three since it appears that Uptown has an AT screen (which I don't-will have to place center below the screen).

BIG, if you care to chime in again with your thoughts about mixing the designs and fitting everything in my 14x23 space that would be great. Thanks!
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post #95 of 1592 Old 08-13-2008, 05:40 PM - Thread Starter
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So close to starting I can almost taste it! Will likely sign my GC to commence work next week and already have my HT guy waiting in the wings. Had to wait for a revised estimate to take into account the addition of the egress window and dual zone LG art cool mini-split. Credit goes to BIG for helping me out in those areas!

In the meantime, got my sample swatches from GOM and picked out my color schemes - GOM FR701 Violet and Blue Plum. Front stage and side columns will be black. Contemplating various color schemes for molding and chair rail that will work well with the Armstrong black frost ceiling tiles and respective fabrics. I especially like Chinadog's trim color. Still need to shop around (with swatches in hand) to see what color carpet will work best.

On a separate note, on the advice of Paul Scarpelli (aka Triad dude), I'm switching my center to In-Room Gold Center from Gold LCR. Did not realize that there was even a Gold Center, which works better with my set-up. Will still be below the screen though.
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post #96 of 1592 Old 08-16-2008, 04:44 PM - Thread Starter
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Ok, we just spent 5 hours straight moving all our 'junk' from the basement into our garage. At least this will force us to throw out a lot of stuff if we ever want to park our car back in the garage! The GC is coming tomorrow morning to measure everything and work will commence on Tuesday morning.

Only items left for the HT are the drop ceiling tile choice (really like the Black Stratford from ceilume.com but pretty pricey), trim color and carpet color. Even though this is not a DIY project I will still try to document the progress since many of the issues would most likely be of interest to others. I can't tell you how gratifying it is to finally 'start' this project which has been in 'research' mode for an eternity. I can only imagine what it will feel like once it's completed.
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post #97 of 1592 Old 08-17-2008, 03:20 PM
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Yahoo!

Yes, post pics of the build as it progresses and we will give you feedback regarding the competency of the builders.
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post #98 of 1592 Old 08-20-2008, 08:58 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by BIGmouthinDC View Post

Yahoo!

Yes, post pics of the build as it progresses and we will give you feedback regarding the competency of the builders.

Thanks, that would be awesome. Always good to get a second opinion. Due to a minor setback the first day wasn't until today. GC spent the day applying drylok to the walls and sketching out the layout.

Setback was due to my planned use of Mirage engineered wood flooring in the playroom area. I was going to put dri-core panels down everywhere except for the bathroom but the Mirage folks strongly advised against it since they said putting the engineered wood over the dri-core would most likely result in quite a lot of bounce. So, long story short, no dri-core in the playroom area. Bostik MVP4 Vapor Barrier will go down first (dry 24 hrs.), followed by Bostik TKO #9 glue and then the Red Oak (traditional grade and cashmere finish) Natural. In the HT, I will still do the dri-core and then have the carpet padding and carpet.

Width space is going to be VERY tight in the theater. GC will likely have the framing done for the HT tomorrow and then I will consult with my HT guy to see whether I can even get two aisles in there. I may only have room for one since ideally I'd like to have the surrounds in columns.
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post #99 of 1592 Old 08-21-2008, 06:43 PM - Thread Starter
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Day 1: Drylok applied to the walls and room set-up sketched on floor.

Day 2: Framing was put up for the HT (looks like back wall not yet finished) with entrance door and equipment closet door in temporary spots until HT guy details actual placement. Framing also done for bathroom and closets, playroom not yet finished.

Front Wall


Equipment Cavity (along with future egress window)


Right Wall (sorry got some of the 2x4 in the pic)


Left Wall (if facing screen)


Back Wall


Width space will be a challenge as I need to fit first row seating IOIOOIOI (125") and second row seating IOIOIIOIOI (138"). Not sure how much that will leave for depth of columns. May eventually just end up with one aisle on the left side instead of two aisles.

Coming home from work is like Christmas. I can't wait to run down into the basement to see the progress.
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post #100 of 1592 Old 08-21-2008, 08:41 PM
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Turn over your chairs and take a look you might be able to remove one of the left arms and turn the II into a I. That would save a few inches for the back row.
Depends on how your particular model was made. Mine are just bolted together. You might just need to put a couple of feet on a metal rail to level it up.
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post #101 of 1592 Old 08-22-2008, 04:24 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by BIGmouthinDC View Post

Turn over your chairs and take a look you might be able to remove one of the left arms and turn the II into a I. That would save a few inches for the back row.
Depends on how your particular model was made. Mine are just bolted together. You might just need to put a couple of feet on a metal rail to level it up.

Thanks, I will check it out when I get home from work. I had the loveseat and back row config set up specifically to accomodate that steel pole that was in the original HT spot. Even though we don't have that issue anymore in the new spot, I like that look and the kids love sitting together (as we pretend we're watching a movie). What's great about the chairs is the flexibility to easily change to IOIOIOIOI for both the first and second rows.

Three inch steel header beam still needs to go up to replace those original wood columns. Big, you were SO right. This is definitely the better location for the HT.
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post #102 of 1592 Old 08-24-2008, 08:56 AM - Thread Starter
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Days 3 and 4: Since we are waiting for specs from the HT guy, GC worked on the rest of the basement framing, including the bathroom, closets and playroom area. So far, I'm very happy with my GC choice. He has showed up everyday at 8:30 and works very diligently. I had heard horror stories that once you give your first check they hardly ever show up, if at all. Being smart though and not getting ahead on payments. Other developments include picking out the carpet for the HT and the basement stairs runner. Went to ProSource (contractor store) and lucked out. I'm not very good at interior decorating and was looking through all the different carpet racks with my GOM fabric samples. Two other women were nearby, where one friend was helping the other with carpet choices. One of the women was an interior decorator and an instructor in interior design at the local college. She felt compelled to help me when she saw how miserably I was doing throwing up my fabric on carpets that didn't match very well. She leafed through the racks and then when she stopped on one, she knew and I knew it was the perfect match. It is kind of like a dark blue plum (like my bottom wall fabric choice) with some simple flower design in a lighter shade. It's dark enough that I've also decided to use it for the staging as well. She indicated to me that if I did go the black route, it would create a break in the room and make my room appear smaller. So now the only things left for the HT are the ceiling tile and trim. After much thought, I just can't do the black ceiling tile. I will shop around some more and possibly go with a grey. Or maybe somehow I can employ Big's design where he did black fabric just right about the screen in a semi-arc. Need to run my daughter off to a birthday pool party but will post a couple updates (though not HT related) with the rest of the basement.


Playroom area where LCD will hang in the bump out (some may recall that this was the original HT spot)



Double Closest


Bathroom
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post #103 of 1592 Old 08-24-2008, 09:35 AM
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What happened to the basic boring builders beige carpet? Did I shame you into getting more creative?

Space is coming along nicely.
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post #104 of 1592 Old 08-24-2008, 12:04 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by BIGmouthinDC View Post

What happened to the basic boring builders beige carpet? Did I shame you into getting more creative?

Space is coming along nicely.

Funny you should say that. While we were at the store I remarked to my mom when I saw a beautiful beige carpet (with raised line patterns) that Big 'chided' me for even thinking of the 'basic builders beige carpet'. I was tempted but when I saw all the other choices it wasn't even a contender anymore. Shame can go a very long way .

On a separate note, a couple audiophile friends of mine have strongly advised against my choice of the Marantz AV8003 as the pre-amp to match the B&K 200.7S2 amp to drive the Triads. They state that Marantz is the top of the middle-line class, but I'd be better off (for the same amount of $) going up the the entry level or mid-level of the next class, such as Krell or Classe. I'm quite content with my Marantz selection but admittedly I am not an audiophile (I'm trying to get there). But I always do additional research when given suggestions so I'm polling the Triad guys for their input. If anyone would care to chime in on that issue please do so. Thanks.
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post #105 of 1592 Old 08-26-2008, 05:47 PM - Thread Starter
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Days 5 and 6: GC spent most of the time on the bathroom since we're still waiting on the HT guy with specs.





He did, however, start on the riser (will be around 10" and 8' deep).


Right Wall - Door, small box for equipment rack location and two lines for columns. Not sure of where the best placement will be for the two columns on each side wall. I suppose sconces will just go inbetween the two columns.


Left Wall - that door entrance will be moved up toward the front of the room once we know how far out the stage and proscenium will go.
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post #106 of 1592 Old 08-26-2008, 06:13 PM
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Your builder is moving at light speed compared to us DIYers. That looks like a huge bathroom.
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post #107 of 1592 Old 08-27-2008, 05:08 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by BIGmouthinDC View Post

Your builder is moving at light speed compared to us DIYers. That looks like a huge bathroom.

Yes, I am truly amazed every time I come home and see all the progress that they have made. He typically only has one helper but the other day I heard he had two.

Day 6: Most of the day spent digging the well for the egress window. They also put up the two 2" steel beams in place of where those original wood columns had stood. Oh, and the shower basin was put in too. Yes, those inground sprinkler hoses need to be re-routed.



Equipment-wise decided to stick with my original plan (Marantz AV8003 as pre-pro). Upcharge was pretty considerable and in my opinion not worth it. Facing some challenges with the right wall. Door will most likely go to the right of the steel pole because space will be tight to the left as a result of my stage. As you can see below, not much room left for the equipment rack. Originally, I was going to build a frame around the rack and have a glass door. Now I'm wondering whether I can just hide the whole thing since my wall space is limited. This way, I can still have my chair rail and actually have some wall on the right side. Those lines are where the columns will be and the rectangles are where my sconces will be. First column (which may look misleading where I drew the line) will be right before the riser and hide the surround speaker. Second column is strictly decorative.

Any thoughts about just hiding the rack behind a fabric frame instead of the glass door? Any downside? For the staging, my HT guy recommended 8" high but I'm thinking 6" would be plenty. Room height is limited as well. Once the drop ceiling gets put in, GC tells me I'll only have 89" left. After the 59" for my screen, that only leaves me with 30". Have to play around with the riser calculator again to see what my options are.

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post #108 of 1592 Old 08-27-2008, 06:30 PM
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On hiding the equipment rack you need to consider how often you will be popping in a DVD/CD and need to access those players. otherwise with the right remote you should be fine.

As I look at the picture there looks like there should be room to the left of the pole. As something to think about is assuming you extend the stage all the way to the wall the rack could actually sit in the wall just a little above the the stage if you need to put it there. There is now law that says hit has to go all the way to the floor. You just need to make sure is sits far enough in front of your false walls to look right.

Another thought is that you just stick the whole rack in the 45 inch deep space to the right of the door and put a Mini rack with access directly into the theater for any thing you need to access frequently like a DVD player, bluray or game console.
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post #109 of 1592 Old 08-27-2008, 07:57 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by BIGmouthinDC View Post

napkin 1.0

leave about 16 inches behind the rear row.


Funny how many months later and even a different location this napkin still works perfectly. Only difference is my room is 3" longer now and the stage has a proscenium to hide the L and R (and possibly sub) speakers. Doors got swapped in terms of left and right sides. Plus, instead of the straight line from the curved stage, it's actually two angles at about 45 degrees.

Here is where I am struggling. I'm not sure how deep to make the stage. Screenwall will go the entire width of the room, with at least 16" behind it (my center is 29"Wx10 3/4"Lx11 7/8"D but leaving extra room just in case the sub needs to go below there as well which measures 17 1/4"Wx18 1/8"Lx15 3/4"D). Proscenium will go in from the outer walls so that is is no less than 105" (screen with frame measures 104"Wx59"L). I figure the proscenium should be a minimum of 16" from the front of the screen wall to the front of the proscenium. Again, this is to accommodate possible sub placement. L and R speakers measure 10 3/4"Wx29"Hx11 1/16"D.

So if I add up 16" for behind the screen and 16" for behind the proscenium that brings me to 32" total deep for the stage. Perhaps putting a few more inches (4") in between the front of the screen and proscenium would make it 3' feet even. When I look at Uptown's photos though it looks like he has a much deeper stage, especially from the build photos. In one photo, he has what looks like a 4' piece of plywood on top of the stage.



Determining the proper depth of the stage is critical since my entrance door and equipment closet door are very dependent upon where it ends. On the right side wall, that steel pole is exactly at 79" off the front wall (keep in mind no double drywall yet though) while on the left side where the entrance door will be that steel pole is at 103" off the front wall. And the placement of the equipment closet door dictates where the equipment rack goes and what type (hidden or not). I almost feel like I have too much going on on that right wall that's why I'm leaning toward just hiding everything in the closet. I will be using a URC MX-980 remot with the MRF-350 base station. Can't exactly get a chair rail up if there's no open space on the wall.
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post #110 of 1592 Old 08-28-2008, 07:11 AM
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I like the idea of hiding everything in the closet. If you put it just to the right of the access door you could crack the door and reach in and pop in a movie.

I would use a right hand door, hinges toward the screen end, opening into the theater. A right hand door swings toward your right arm when you put your butt against the hinges.

That way you can crack the door and reach the DVD player without even leaving the theater if you position the rack correctly.

That de-clutters that wall.

As for the depth of the stage I like the look of a ft of stage in front of the proscenium. Uptowns stage looks about 5ft deep. Don't forget to consider the thickness of the false wall and proscenium framing when planing access and placement of your speakers.

Planning ahead, not sure who is going to be building your false wall and proscenium but you need to start planning how to put on the fabric. It is a science. For instance. If it is your GC he needs to understand that the proscenium should actually be built loose(free standing). Then you can wrap and staple the fabric, then slide it into position and fasten in place (screws). That method allows you to hide all the staples.

If the GC builds it and nails it into place you will have difficulty hiding the staples.
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post #111 of 1592 Old 08-28-2008, 01:03 PM
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Just a couple random thoughts. You can put that pile of sand I see in the pics in your stage. Actually anything that fits between the joists (big rocks) can be placed in there and then pack sand around the items. Just be sure it is dry.

Should save a few trips for your GC.

A 10 inch high riser needs an intermediate step. I think 8 inches is the limit for a single step up. Your GC should be aware of the local code on stairs and could correct me if I'm wrong.
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post #112 of 1592 Old 08-28-2008, 08:53 PM - Thread Starter
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I like the idea of hiding everything in the closet. If you put it just to the right of the access door you could crack the door and reach in and pop in a movie.

I would use a right hand door, hinges toward the screen end, opening into the theater. A right hand door swings toward your right arm when you put your butt against the hinges.

That way you can crack the door and reach the DVD player without even leaving the theater if you position the rack correctly.

That de-clutters that wall.

Yes, I'm liking that idea more and more with my limited wall space. I don't anticipate having to access the equipment all too frequently since we will mainly be watching movies. So if I understand your right hand door correctly, it simply means the knob is on the right and the hinges on the left, with the door opening facing the theater seats?

Plus, then I can still get in my chair rail. Can you tell I like chair rail.
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post #113 of 1592 Old 08-28-2008, 09:05 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by BIGmouthinDC View Post


As for the depth of the stage I like the look of a ft of stage in front of the proscenium. Uptowns stage looks about 5ft deep. Don't forget to consider the thickness of the false wall and proscenium framing when planing access and placement of your speakers.

Planning ahead, not sure who is going to be building your false wall and proscenium but you need to start planning how to put on the fabric. It is a science. For instance. If it is your GC he needs to understand that the proscenium should actually be built loose(free standing). Then you can wrap and staple the fabric, then slide it into position and fasten in place (screws). That method allows you to hide all the staples.

If the GC builds it and nails it into place you will have difficulty hiding the staples.

I'm not quite sure I'm following you when you say the look of a foot of stage in front of the proscenium. In Uptown's it looks like it ends at the front of the proscenium with the exception of the curve part.



Yes, I was thinking Uptown's looked about 4 1/2 feet. But if I'm hiding my rack, the equipment door can certainly go to the right of my steel column, which in turn makes the staging area that more flexible in terms of depth.

Is there a standard thickness that should be used for the false wall and proscenium framing? I just assumed they would be built with 2x4s. Can you tell construction and design are not my strong points.

So the actual proscenium could in essence be carried off the stage since it's not going to be screwed down to anything? I guess that makes the sizing very precise because the fit will obviously need to be very snug. And only AFTER those left and right walls get wrapped in the fabric does the GC secure them in place with screws?

The GC will be building all of the staging and proscenium while the HT guy will be applying all of the linacoustic, cotton batting and fabric.
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post #114 of 1592 Old 08-28-2008, 09:10 PM - Thread Starter
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Just a couple random thoughts. You can put that pile of sand I see in the pics in your stage. Actually anything that fits between the joists (big rocks) can be placed in there and then pack sand around the items. Just be sure it is dry.

Should save a few trips for your GC.

A 10 inch high riser needs an intermediate step. I think 8 inches is the limit for a single step up. Your GC should be aware of the local code on stairs and could correct me if I'm wrong.

Thanks for the sand tip. Yes, I had read in another thread that 8" was typically the limit for the single step. I had hoped to get away with an 8" riser but it seems like every day I lose a few inches off my ceiling. I did various calculations and the riser ranges from 10 to 11 3/8". I brought up the issue with my GC and he said he'll just add a mini step half the size of whatever the riser ends up being.

Still uncertain of whether I can actually get in two aisles or not and the depth of my columns. Need to do a lot of sketching and thinking this through over the weekend.
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post #115 of 1592 Old 08-28-2008, 09:11 PM - Thread Starter
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Meant to ask another question. From all the builds it doesn't appear that anyone has put any special framing for behind the screen. Is it simply hung with 4 screws in each corner or does it need additional support in the middle?
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post #116 of 1592 Old 08-29-2008, 09:05 AM
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Originally Posted by queendvd2 View Post

I'm not quite sure I'm following you when you say you like the look of a foot of stage in front of the proscenium. In Uptown's it looks like it ends at the front of the proscenium with the exception of the curve part.

Is there a standard thickness that should be used for the false wall and proscenium framing? I just assumed they would be built with 2x4s. Can you tell construction and design are not my strong points.

So the actual proscenium could in essence be carried off the stage since it's not going to be screwed down to anything? I guess that makes the sizing very precise because the fit will obviously need to be very snug. And only AFTER those left and right walls get wrapped in the fabric does the GC secure them in place with screws?

The GC will be building all of the staging and proscenium while the HT guy will be applying all of the linacoustic, cotton batting and fabric.

The foot in front of the proscenium is obvious in Brits build. Note how he also did a two step stage. The alternating light/dark shadow it creates really emphasizes the the stage even though he carried the same carpet color from the floor to the stage (like your plum carpet)



Most guys use standard 2x4s to frame the false walls and P.

I guess I should take a step back on the fabric discussion because I realized that I assumed that your installer would be using a staple method. You guy may actually use a plastic track system (like fabricmate.com). In that case the fabric is pushed in a channel and the track grabs the fabric. In that case you can mount on the front surface without wrapping the fabric onto the sides. In any case there needs to be some coordination between your GC and Fabric guy regarding the trim molding details and the fabric installation.

For instance if you love a good thick chair rail (sticking out from the wall) and you are planning linacoustic on the wall, the method of fabric installation and the sequence of construction is critical. If the chair rail is mounted to the drywall and then 1 inch of wall treatment is mounted above and below the Chair rail, the rail will look 1 inch skinnier. A work around is to use 1 inch thick furring strips to mount the chair rail molding 1 inch proud of the wall.

If the fabric guy is using furring strips, all molding in the room should be completed after the fabric is up. This includes the case molding around doors, crown, base and chair rail.

You need to have a detailed discussion with the theater guy on this phase of the project.
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post #117 of 1592 Old 08-29-2008, 09:19 AM
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Originally Posted by queendvd2 View Post

Meant to ask another question. From all the builds it doesn't appear that anyone has put any special framing for behind the screen. Is it simply hung with 4 screws in each corner or does it need additional support in the middle?

I forgot which screen mfgr you picked but in general all screens have pretty substantial frames and don't require any additional special framing. You should check their web site for an installation manual.

Some guys build a wall frame "pocket" around the frame and kind of set it in place. Don't forget to plan the thickness of any fabric treatments. It would be a good idea to have your screen and use the frame to check dimensions if you go this route.

I used a Stewart screen and it mounts with 4 screws that stick out from two vertical studs. the screen has 4 brackets with key holes that slip over the screw heads. The brackets slide anywhere along the top and bottom frame members. I positioned the two vertical studs about 25% in from each end of the screen.
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post #118 of 1592 Old 08-29-2008, 09:28 AM
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Back to your stage/riser/screen/ceiling heights planning

You are in a position now where you can do some real world testing of your planning. Just haul two chairs down to the basement. Put some scraps of wood on the riser and set one chair there. Put the other in front of it. Now you need to just lean a 2x4 in position where the screen will be and use some blue tape to mark where the top and bottom of the screen will be.

Sit in the rear chair and take a look, recline the chair and take a look.

This is one element where all the calculations and modeling don't compare to using your chairs in their actual positions.
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post #119 of 1592 Old 08-29-2008, 09:32 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by BIGmouthinDC View Post

Most guys use standard 2x4s to frame the false walls and P.

If the fabric guy is using furring strips, all molding in the room should be completed after the fabric is up. This includes the case molding around doors, crown, base and chair rail.

Yes, indeed HT guy will be directing GC where to put up the furring strips and he will staple fabric. Then after he's done, the GC will put up all the moldings, crown, chair rail, etc.
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post #120 of 1592 Old 08-29-2008, 09:40 AM - Thread Starter
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Some guys build a wall frame "pocket" around the frame and kind of set it in place. Don't forget to plan the thickness of any fabric treatments. It would be a good idea to have your screen and use the frame to check dimensions if you go this route.

I used a Stewart screen and it mounts with 4 screws that stick out from two vertical studs. the screen has 4 brackets with key holes that slip over the screw heads. The brackets slide anywhere along the top and bottom frame members. I positioned the two vertical studs about 25% in from each end of the screen.

I'm using the Stewart luxus deluxe screen. Just to make sure I truly understand this false wall concept. After the GC puts up the drywall then the framing for the false wall goes up (in my case with 16" behind it). That framing simply gets wrapped with the fabric. The linacoustic can be adhered directly to the drywall and then nothing else is necessary since the false wall will be covering.

My GC had asked whether there would be another layer of drywall. I don't think there is but just want to verify that I understand the process correctly.
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