Just to add to Alans points... Full play is where its at, to the extent that some places wont rent you the film if you're using a platter.
I can see the attraction of doing it all yourself, and will certainly learn when I get time, but its not just a "point and shoot" affair like a digital. There is no problem getting a good projectionist to do it for you. He will do everything for you including checking the print, putting it all together and breaking it down.
Hiring a projectionist also makes for more of an event. Ive said this before, but I owe a debt of gratitude to Alan here. When discussing my new install, at the embryonic phase, he suggested I throw in a 35mm option. My reaction was along the lines of "why would I put one of those dinosaurs in?". Alan insisted I was way off base, and should take the opportunity to see a good domestic 35mm install. I did, and within minutes I realized he was right and I was totally wrong. Which brings me back to the projectionist....When I went to see a"private screening", which is what some buffs prefer to call it, the fact that the projectionist came into the reception area, announced the film and led us to our seats, added significantly to the atmosphere.
I will use a projectionist initially, then I'll get him to teach me.
PS Alan....I could have used a heads up on how big and heavy these things are. I had to totally re do the framing for the projection room