Any photos of from the DIY crowd? - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 7 Old 08-07-2001, 07:18 AM - Thread Starter
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I love the ideas about the homemade screens. I was wondering if there are more pics out there so that I can see some of the details that you are going though.

For example, I was looking at the idea of using electrical conduit as the frame, but I don't "see" the screen attaching process.

Also, can anyone recommend a screen size (16:9) for my new NEC LT150? My room is 19'4 x 20' with a sloping rear ceiling. I want to maximize my screen size and hope to plan my material gathering accordingly.

Man, I wish I knew about this site last year. I could have saved a bundle from the advice here.
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post #2 of 7 Old 08-09-2001, 01:03 PM
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Take this for what it is worth, since I don't have a DIY screen, but I have an idea on using conduit.
If you have a heavy duty sewing machine around, or can hire someone to do it for you, you could take your screen material and sew some black elastic material onto it. The black would frame the image, and you could also make loops on the outside, so that when you insert the conduit, it would keep the screen tensioned. You would have to have the corners of the conduit exposed to start with but could cover it later, since you would not want to tension it toward the corners.
How is that?

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post #3 of 7 Old 08-09-2001, 02:50 PM
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I just made a screen for my new HT using a 4'X7'1" melamine board painted light grey (I have a Sony 10HT projector). I am working on putting together photos etc but it may take a while. Here's a quick synopsis:

- I painted the melamine with paint made from a quart of flat white paint mixed with 5/48 oz of lamp black
- I mounted the melamine board on the wall surrounded by 1X3 boards on all sides
- I then created a black velvet border around the "screen" which angles out at about 45 degrees (providing some shadowbox qualities) using wood trim and lots of (hidden) staples
- Finally, I created wooden mattes covered with black velvet which I mounted on hinges which I can swing in front of the screen to watch 2.35:1 movies without the annoying light spill

Everything has worked well so far. I'll be sure to post more details once I have pictures developed (I admit it, I do not have a digital camera, just a scanner!)

Mike
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post #4 of 7 Old 08-10-2001, 03:04 AM
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I don't have pictures but here is what I did for my constant area screen.

Screen Supplies:

4 8' 1x4" boards
3-4 yards of black out fabric
1 1/4" 2 foot by 4 foot panel
manual staple gun (I think load with 1/2" staples)
3/4" phillips wood screws (~40~ or so of them)
hand held jig saw
cordless drill
small level

Masking supllies:

1 8'x4' 1/4" plywood sheet
6-7 yards of black cotton material
some more of the 3/4" screws
packing tape (get the good stuff)
hand held jig saw
cordless drill
small level

Ok, I first cut 2 of the 1"x4" boards to the width I wanted. Then I determined what I need for height, and cut 3 vertical braces, out of the remaining 2 boards. Then I took the 1/4" plywood sheet, and cut 4 1'x1' triangles (well first a 1'x1' square, then cut that at a angle to make two triangles), and two keystones 1 foot long and 4" on the short side of keystone, and about 10" on the long side. I laid out the 1x4 boards and measured the diaganol's for or five times until I was sure the frame was square. The the triangle quater inch pieces were attached to the four corners of the frame, while the two keystones were used to provide attachment for the center vertical brace. While attaching each piece I kept measuring the diangonal's of the frame, making sure it was square. Then I laid it on its back, and lined up the balckout material. I made sure to buy extra in case any part of the material had any blemishs. Ok, next we cut it about 3inchs short of the width of the frame. Then came the fun part, stapling! The staples were attached to the FRONT of the frame, becuase the masking coverd those up, but we will get to that later. We started with the staples in the middle with one or two staples on both sides and top and bottom. We made sure to pull the fabric tight as we did that. From there, we worked to the corners, with just 2-4 staples at a time in each direction and then rotating to the other side of the screen. So it was like this; pulling-stapling-rotate-pulling-stapling-rotate etc. When we got to the corners we were like "oh my, are those waves/wrinkles gonna disappear, or did we not pull tight enuff?!?". Don't worry the last few pulls and staples got rid of every wave/wrinkle the fabric had. We then hung the frame off some 2x4 fours, and made sure it was level. Those 2x4's are attached to set of industrail shevels, but that is a story for another time.

Ok now for the masking. We went to the home depot, and had them cut the full 1/4" sheet into four 6" wide panels (yes we have lots left over). We wanted 4 inch, but they said all they would do is 6"! We cut the length at home to what we needed. We cut the bottom panel so its the width of our 2:35 viewable image. This then had some black fabric taped to its A grade side, that we had preped with a paper towel rub down, which was done to get most of the saw dust off so the tape would stick. Ok, with fabric taped to the board, and the fabric sticking out the top we then attached the panel A grade side towards the frame with 3/4" screws. Now we had cut the fabric so it would basiclly wrap around the board completely minus a couple of inchs. And of course it was cut longer so it wraped around the ends. Anyway, when we attached the board we made sure it was level and centered. Oh and the board being 6inchs wide we left about 3inchs of it hanging off the bottom edge of screen. Now with the fabric pinned nicely between the board and screen frame we pulled it over and back around of the board, and taped it place. We did it that way so no screw is left showing. I know a picture would much better explain all this, but for now words will have to do. With some tucking and cutting, the fabric is completely around the board snug and tight. Now we did pretty much the same thing with the side masking, 6" wide 1/4" thick panels cut to the length we needed. Tapped the fabric to one side of the panel. Screwed it to the screen frame, and made sure again, it was level, then strecthed the material around to the backside. Ok if you have followed me completely so far, we have a screen and a big 6" wide framimg of black on the sides and bottom. Now knowing I wanted a constant surface area screen, the top masking had to be varible. For the top masking at this time, we just have a big section of the black material attached to long wooden rod, propped on top of the frame. Oh, we also sowed in one of the 6" panels again cut to the length we needed, so it would have weight to it, and lay against the screen nicely. To bring the masking in, we have to get up on a chair to manual roll/unroll the fabric. Soon we will have a custom rod system from a drapery company, that all we will have to do to bring down the top masking is pull a rope on the back of the screen frame. "Ok", you say "but how does that give you constant area?", I am getting there! So now that the top panel of masking can be raised and lowered, we need a way to give us varible side masking as well. For this (and note we haven't gotten around to this yet), we are gonna make two 9" wide black fabric panels, and two 4 and 1/2" panels. We are going to attach that to the back of the top masking with velcro.

How the varible masking all works, to give us constant area:

We concentrated on two things for our constant area screen. One was to make sure we could get a constant area for the 3 major aspect ratios (1..33, 1.85 and 2.35), and two was to be able to frame each of those aspect ratios with black masking. In other words, if the certain sections of the screen aren't getting a picture, they are masked off by black material. Ok for TV viewing (aka 1.33 aka 4:3) we will have the top masking up at the top. And we will use those two 9inch wide panels one on each side of the top masking, extending down to the bottom masking. For 1.85 movies, we will use 4 and 1/2" panels, with the top masking brought down a little. For 2.35 movies, we will just bring the top masking down, while the permament side and bottom masking do the rest. And how this works incunjunction with our projector is we use the zoom, to make the 4:3 image small enough to fit between those extra 9inch panels and the top and bottom. Then for 1.85 movies I will use the zoom to make it a little bigger so the full width of the projected image is used, but it will still fit the width with those extra 4 and 1/2" panels. And for 2.35 movies I use the zoom to make it even bigger, and then the top masking is brought down even further then for 1:85 movies. Oh BTW, Its a 4:3 projector, and I am using a PC for DVD playback, and dScaler for TV/satellite viewing. The projector can move a computer image up or down, so I move the image down until it hits the bottom masking for each aspect ratio that is viewed besides 1.33. With 1.33, the iamge is center, because its using the full projector resolution. I have the projector in table top mode, in the back of the room, shooting just over our heads. So what happens when I zoom in or out, the bottom of the projected image doesn't really move, truth be told I think it moves half an inch or so, when I make the projected image bigger. But with the projector being able to position a computer image where ever I want, that is really a non-factor. We went with constant area, becuase we knew if we used a 4:3 screen, the TV viewing would seem EXTRA large, when compared to viewing a 2:35 movie. Also I will make a note here, that we use the maxium width of the projectors image for each and every aspect ratio, its just for movies that we have to "throw away" pixels in the vertical domain, until someone loans me a panamorph on a permanmet basis.

Whew! Any questions?

PS sorry for any bad gramer or spelling mistakes, its late here!!!
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post #5 of 7 Old 08-10-2001, 03:10 AM
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Oh I was also going to add, that I just got a boat load samples from da-lite. Their matte white is darn close to the black out material for color and brightness, so close in fact, that I have no desire to buy a pre-made screen ever! Well, not untill I get a more powerful projector that could be used with their high-contrast material!

[This message has been edited by darth maul (edited 08-10-2001).]
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post #6 of 7 Old 08-10-2001, 09:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by SVonhof:
...sew some black elastic material onto it. The black would frame the image...it would keep the screen tensioned.

How is that?

Hey Scott. I like this idea!

Jeff Streitz
Iowa City, IA

Jeff
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post #7 of 7 Old 08-11-2001, 04:39 AM
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I'll happily post some pics i the next week or two. On Brett's classic thread.

My builder is coming in on Monday to help me finish my screen (finally). Right now it is blackout material staple-gunned to drywall. Tomorrow I have to remove the screen and he is putting in a melamine board ('cos drywall ain't perfectly straight). I will nail-gun the screen to the melamine then he will build a flush surround from 18mm wood veneer, completed with triangular shaped surrounds for the screen so it looks 'inset' into the wall.

Then I'll retire, maybe even watch a movie or two http://www.avsforum.com/ubb/smile.gif
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