Need Advice On How to Build Curved Top Acoustic Panels - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 12 Old 05-05-2010, 02:39 AM - Thread Starter
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I have a build thread going (3FB's "Foreclosure" Theater, see the link in my signature if you want to see pics of current progress) but I'd thought I'd post to the main forum to get more responses on this one. My wife and I love these acoustic panels that the amazing Dennis Erskine and his group built.







The first question is, what parts go into making these panels? I can imagine the following materials list, but please correct me or make suggestions:
  • Fabric (thinking GOM FR 701)
  • acoustic absorption material (duct liner or OC703 for this?)
  • trimwork (normal millwork for the sides and bottom, but flex trim for the top trim?)
  • 1/4" of plywood backing?
  • mdf for the backing for the sconces to affix to

The second question is, what order do I put this all together in? Its pretty complicated because the fabric has to be stapled tight to something, then the trim work, but the flex trim can't be painted until its nailed in place.

The third question is, how should these be affixed to the wall? There are so many ways to affix acoustic panels, just wondering what might be recommended for this particular type.

Its 1:37 AM on a worknight, but I can't stop my brain from thinking about how to make these. Any advice would be very very welcome!!!!
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post #2 of 12 Old 05-05-2010, 04:03 AM - Thread Starter
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Dennis has informed me that these are actually hand painted drywall, so I guess the example isn't an acoustic panel. EDIT: Miscommunication, they are acoustic panels.

Anyone out there that has made framed acoustic panels and has experience with flex trim that could give some advice?
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post #3 of 12 Old 05-05-2010, 05:17 AM
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The round top panels on the wall ARE acoustic panels. I misread your post and thought you were posting about the curved, radius soffits.

Dennis Erskine CFI, CFII, MEI
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post #4 of 12 Old 05-05-2010, 08:43 AM
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Looking at the picture I can pretty much deconstruct how the talented Erskine group did the wall panels. I'm stuck in my office today so I will try to describe the general approach. Dennis's guy may have used different methods/materials but you should be able to get similar results using this approach:

Starting with a flat drywall surface you will build all the panels on the wall.

Mount 1 inch thick furring strips to the drywall with liquid nails and drywall screws around the perimeter and directly under the location of the decorative molding. Plan the furring to support the crown molding at the top and the baseboard at the bottom. Multiple parallel strips may work best for the baseboard.

Mount a 1 inch thick mounting plate to the wall for the sconces at least as big as the sconce footprint.

Attach a combination of linacoustic, batting or other 1 inch thick wall treatments to the wall per your overall pre-engineered acoustical treatment plan fitting pieces between all the furring.

Stretch and staple fabric to the furring strips. Plan the staple locations so that they will be hid by all the trim work and sconces. I would use a full size cardboard or foamcore template as a stapling guide.

Fasten all the pre-finished molding to the wall hiding all the staples with finish nails.

Touch up nail holes, mount sconces.

You can buy pre-curved molding, or make your own. I don't think flexible molding was used. Dennis's team may have wood bending capability. You can google wood bending if you really want to go down that path, it would require a bit of learning and equipment. Here is one source I found doing a Google for curved case molding: http://www.curvedmouldings.com/curves.html

Here is a video on steam bending wood for you to get an idea of what is involved:

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post #5 of 12 Old 05-05-2010, 01:01 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks DC. I think where I'm getting hung up is the flex trim, it creates all sorts of issues because you have to nail it in place before staining, and I cant stain the trim with the fabric in place, it seems the paint would get on the fabric.

But if I find some pre-curved pieces of trim wood, I can paint them beforehand, stretch and staple the fabric, and nail the pre-stained trim in place.

Thanks again! Stay tuned for pics.
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post #6 of 12 Old 05-05-2010, 02:08 PM - Thread Starter
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Anyone know where the average joe can buy acoustically transparent cloth that has patterns such as this?

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post #7 of 12 Old 05-05-2010, 02:16 PM
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here is one option
http://www.athometheaterrooms.com/9.html

IMHO, What you really want for panels are fabrics that don't reflect sound. If they happen to absorb some of the frequencies on the way to insulation so what? Acoustically transparent is necessary for those covering speakers.

Don't ask me how to tell if they reflect sound.
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post #8 of 12 Old 05-05-2010, 02:49 PM
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Let's see ... you wanna copy my curved top panels...
you'd like to use fabric like I have ...
There is simple answer ... you do what the owners of those theaters did.

Thanks for the flattery.

Dennis Erskine CFI, CFII, MEI
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post #9 of 12 Old 05-05-2010, 03:03 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dennis Erskine View Post

Let's see ... you wanna copy my curved top panels...
you'd like to use fabric like I have ...
There is simple answer ... you do what the owners of those theaters did.

Thanks for the flattery.

Imitation is the most sincere form! But not to worry Dennis, no matter how hard I try to copy you, my theater will never look like the works of art that you create!

Anyone else know of companies that make designer acoustic fabric like the company DC recommended? I'm trying to collect as many sample designs as possible.

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post #10 of 12 Old 05-05-2010, 04:52 PM
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Thats a nice fabric, really nice - is it AT?

Edit: if so, what is it? and where can I get it?

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"what is worth knowing is difficult to learn"

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post #11 of 12 Old 05-05-2010, 05:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Elill View Post

and where can I get it?


Add this trick to your tool kit:
Right click over the picture then select properties, the vendor who is hosting the picture is in the link. Of course it was the one I linked earlier.
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post #12 of 12 Old 05-05-2010, 05:31 PM
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Cheers Big!

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