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Motorized curtains - Page 2

post #31 of 103
Yeah let us know how accurate you can get the sucker!
post #32 of 103
I have a brand new unit sitting in a closet. I had bought it, and then hired an interior designer, and ended up going with a different electric curtain configuration altogether. I never took it out of the packaging. I tried to sell it on AVSForum a while back but no takers. Here are the details and what I paid for it (I think it is a white in color). I think it can be cut shorter, but may require a reseller to do it. If any interest, let me know.

Purchased from Houston Automated Shade
www.automatedshade.com
BTX Motordrape 1000
154" total width
Center Split
Wall mount Brackets
$619.00

Subtotal $619.00
Credits $30.00 - Sample package
Shipping $40.00

Total $629.00

Shake1
post #33 of 103
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shake1 View Post

I have a brand new unit sitting in a closet. I had bought it, and then hired an interior designer, and ended up going with a different electric curtain configuration altogether. I never took it out of the packaging. I tried to sell it on AVSForum a while back but no takers. Here are the details and what I paid for it (I think it is a white in color). I think it can be cut shorter, but may require a reseller to do it. If any interest, let me know.

Purchased from Houston Automated Shade
www.automatedshade.com
BTX Motordrape 1000
154" total width
Center Split
Wall mount Brackets
$619.00

Subtotal $619.00
Credits $30.00 - Sample package
Shipping $40.00

Total $629.00

Shake1

Unfortunately that's not wide enough for me.

In any case, does this BTX system offer presets? If so, how many?
What kind of interface for the controls comes with it? IR, RS232, ?
How would you rate the overall manufacturing quality of such a unit?

Thanks much!
_____
Axel
post #34 of 103
BTX makes many models. I ended up going with custom made, high end BTX model. As this was a couple of years ago, I do not remember what this model offers so you would need to call BTX and ask them, or a reseller, or google it. I know there are a few sites out there with the manual in electronic format.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Axel View Post

Unfortunately that's not wide enough for me.

In any case, does this BTX system offer presets? If so, how many?
What kind of interface for the controls comes with it? IR, RS232, ?
How would you rate the overall manufacturing quality of such a unit?

Thanks much!
_____
Axel
post #35 of 103
Thread Starter 
I spoke with someone at BTX - this unit does not have pre-set stop points, you can only stop it with the remote.
post #36 of 103
I don't like that.
post #37 of 103
Thread Starter 
Is there any motorized system that anyone knows about that has pre-set stop points costing even in the $600 or $700 range? $1500 just seems like a lot of money to move curtains back and forth....

Thanks!!
post #38 of 103
I am wondering if you can use a timer macro in the Pronto, to auto stop the curtains at certain intervals for each desired aspect ratio - if the curtain control system does not support preset stops.

For electric curtains, here are draper rod links I have to share:

http://www.motorizedsolutions.com
http://www.btxinc.com
http://www.automatedshade.com
http://www.silentgliss-usa.com
http://www.smarthome.com/_/Somfy/_/1t5/nav.aspx?Ne=265
http://www.smarthome.com/3151.HTML
http://www.htmarket.com/lighting--si...tain-rods.html
http://www.remotecontrolcurtain.com/

Shake1
post #39 of 103
Thanks for the links! How is your install coming?
post #40 of 103
Brian D gerat question, seems nobody can answer it though.
post #41 of 103
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cameron View Post

Thanks for the links! How is your install coming?

Going well! I am almost 100% finished (if there ever is such a thing). I bought this house 5 years ago, with an existing dedicated media room in it. I've been chipping away at this project over the years, buying stuff as I came up with the funds. I only have a couple of things that I'm working on. I still need a subwoofer; and I need to finish up programming the macros in the URC MX-3000 remote.

Here are some pics of my curtain configuration. The curtain rod is a BTX, and custom built for my room (their platinum color). This curtain rod was very expensive, more than I wanted to spend, but I think it was worth it in the long run. I had the curtains made by a local custom drapery lady. When open, the curtains "stack" on the side walls. The wall where the curtains are located is 13' wide. I do not use the curtains for anything other covering the wall where the screen is hanging.

Shake1
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post #42 of 103
Quote:
Originally Posted by elmalloc View Post

Brian D gerat question, seems nobody can answer it though.

I am not sure how many folks use an electric curtain to mask screens for AR, so it may be hard to find these answers via individuals. BrianD will need to call the manufacturers and ask them about their products and features.

FYI - most of these products can be purchased through drapery companies / individuals, at significantly less cost.
post #43 of 103
Thank you shake.
post #44 of 103
Shake1,

Your room width is almost the same as mine (mine is 160"). I'm curious: When your curtains stack to the side of the screen, how wide is that stack? I'm just wondering how much room to each side of the screen is needed for the stacking of a similar length of curtains covering my screen.

Thanks.
post #45 of 103
I did not have a tape measure with me, but the wrap around to the side walls is about 3.5' to 4'. Per the pictures, you can tell that I have the stop set just to the outside of the screen border (left / right edges). the curtain track is curved in each of the corners.

The curtains are made a heavy material.
post #46 of 103
It might be helpful to know that the industry standard for stack is 1/3 of the total. As an example, if your curtain width on one side is 100 inches, then your stack space would be about 33 inches. Measure the distance from the center of your rod (center of screen) to where the end of the rod will be.

While this is an industry standard calculation, in actual practice I find it runs very slightly less required stack space.

Another thing to know is that screen curtains shouldn't be lined. No need. You're not stopping any sunlight. Not lining them cuts down the stack space a little, and also makes them less bulky and stiff. It also lowers the cost.

Another useful formula for figuring stack space if you're going wall to wall is to divide the total width by 6. Example: 200 inches wall to wall, divided by 6 gives you about 33 inches of stack on each side of the screen. If you want, take that number times 4 and you get the screen opening. Example: 33 x 4 = 132" screen opening. Double checking: 132"+33"+33"= 198". That's less than the 200 because I rounded the numbers with each calculation.

Screen curtains do not need to be more than 1.5 times fullness, not the usual 2 to 3 times fullness often employed on window draperies. Cuts down stack a tiny bit, save a bit on fabric, and looks fine.
post #47 of 103
Thread Starter 
I am starting to feel like this is going to be like everything else with my theater.... I am going to spend a lot more than planned....

Shake1 - how much did you spend on just the curved motorized track system? I think that is going to be the way I need to go... do you have multiple pre-set stopping point options or is it just open and close?

Thanks!!
post #48 of 103
BrianD,

The curved BTX curtain rod was around $2,500 (I cannot exactly recall). I purchased the rod via the custom drapery person I contracted with. I do not think my rod supports multiple stopping points (BTX model 5060). You would need to call BTX to ask, and maybe ask which of their models have that feature.

The draperies were around 2x that price (labor and materials). If you've ever purchased custom curtains for a house, you will know that they can easily be one of the most expensive purchases you will ever make. Fabric is unbelievably expensive! But, they can have a huge impact on the room's looks. It ended up being a lot more than I planned / wanted to spend, but I am happy that I did. Looks very, very nice and the wife loves them.

For my HT, I spent more of my budget on the aesthetics for the room (paint, draperies, furnishings, etc.). I believe this is where most of the "Wow!" factor happens when friends and family come over to visit. Most people I know cannot tell the difference between DVD and Blu-Ray, and they really don't care. Remember, these are one time investments in the room, whereas technology changes regularly and is often replaced. I have nice equipment too, but I would say that I am a middle of the road kind of HT technology consumer.

I have an audiophile friend, who has a HT setup as well (FP & screen). He has spent tens of thousands of dollars on the equipment, the best you can buy (literally). His HT room is a converted spare bedroom room and looks like crap. And although "he" enjoys his gear, no one else shares in his appreciation. What they see is his HT room, and there is no "Wow!". If he invested more into his room's aesthetics, and put it on par with his gear, he would knock it out of the park.
post #49 of 103
Yeah making the room nice is definitely part of the balance. It is definitely something that makes the whole experience better for me.
post #50 of 103
Sadly, BTX does not have any motorized rods with intermediate stops. Only programmable open and closed positions. You can stop them at any location, however, with the remote.

The 5060 is an outstanding rod and the best one they make.
post #51 of 103
Another motorized curtain supplier...
http://www.blindshademotors.com

Mostly Somfy. Good luck.
post #52 of 103
Deane Johnson,

Thank you for the contribution. Very helpful.
post #53 of 103
Quote:
Originally Posted by R Harkness View Post

Deane Johnson,

Thank you for the contribution. Very helpful.

If you run slightly short of stack room, there are some tricks that will help. If this is the case, contact me and I'll detail them to you. It's kind of difficult to make generalizations, or else I would just post them.
post #54 of 103
Deane,

Do you know of any motor systems that can be stopped in various places?
post #55 of 103
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cameron View Post

Deane,

Do you know of any motor systems that can be stopped in various places?

I do not, and I try to check out everything I come across, though I certainly don't know about all of them. It is my belief that there is nothing on the market with programmable mid stops. Most will stop anywhere with the remote, but are not programmable to do that.

The closest possibility is the Makita, which I have no experience with, but understand it has some sort of mechanical device you can attach to stop it mid-stream. However, I think to fully open or close, you would need to ratchet through these stops, something that wouldn't look very professional, if even possible. Makita builds good stuff, but for some reason most distributors and retailers have dropped them. I am told it's because they are a pain to deal with.

The programmable mid-stop thing would not be difficult for a manufacturer. The old discontinued DrapeBoss system had them.

What I would do today if I were building from scratch to get side masking would be to use two motorized rods, one for masking, one for the curtains. I'd program the masking rod to close to the proper location and stop, and open to the proper location and stop. This would give me 4:3 masking and full screen width masking. Wouldn't work for someone needing more than two stop locations such as the guys doing constant height variable width. One would need to be sure the rod was programmable and not one that simply stops when it comes to the end of travel and can go no further. I suppose the way around that might be to experiment with clamping something to the rod that fooled it into thinking it had reached the end of travel.
post #56 of 103
One other option (and I am not kidding ), is to go to a local electronics store, and get some names of folks that do small projects (e.g tinkerers, guys that want to earn extra money, etc.).

If you can do the mechanical portion of securing a motor to a curtain rod, I am sure you could find someone to make a controller and motor setup for you. Would require a stepper motor, an IR interface and a circuit to control the stepper motor stop / start, with small amount of programmable memory. Most of this stuff, if not all, a tinkerer will have access to via sidewalk meets and flea markets. This stuff can be salvaged out of old junk very easily.

Key components will be a good stepper motor and a curtain rod that is capable of holding the weight of your drapes. I would recommend a curtain rod that has some sort of ball bearing rollers, to reduce the drag once it has a load on it.

About twenty years ago, I used to do a lot of this stuff myself, and had all kinds of this stuff laying around. A project like this would not have been too difficult to build.
post #57 of 103
As I've mentioned a number of times, the automated curtain/roller panel system from Goelst has up to 5 programmable stopping points, which is why I'm going with this system:

http://www.goelstamerica.com/products-mot.htm

Info on their remote control system:

http://www.goelstamerica.com/product...%20Control.pdf

They are into remote control integration and I believe the remotes can be either IR or RF, and learnable by universal remotes.

Deane Johnson outlined a system that is very close to what I'm going to do.
I've decided on using the Goelst roller panel system instead of the curtains, as the roller panel system will allow for a more clean, discrete set-up in my room.

Here are some very crude Google Sketchup images to give the general idea of what I plan. The colors are not accurate, just there so you can easily discern the panel system.

Two panel systems will be employed, fit into a valance over the screen. The first "inner" panel system will be black panels, used for masking the image with various pre-set stopping points (I plan to use the "zoom" method).

Here's a crude top view of the masking panel track:



Here's the MASKING system in "action":



Closed:



The masking panels will be hidden behind the longer, outer panel system, which will be a more soothing color and cover the entire screen wall when not in use:



Closing:

post #58 of 103
Thread Starter 
R Harkness - I have an e-mail into goelstamerica.com - thanks for the link. How wide is your track/screen and what did they quote you for price?

THanks!
post #59 of 103
Just a bit more from the Goelst Brochures:

Both the automated curtain and automated panel-moving tracks use the "6000" series tracks, and hence both have the remote controlled features discussed from these exerpts of the brochure:




G-Rail series 6000 electrically operated curtain tracks with
‘built-in’ CAN-BUS switching allows for stand alone programming
and control or integration with most Home Automation systems.
Infrared remote control is supplied as standard with all 6000 series
electrically operated curtain tracks.
Optional manual switching and wireless radio control (RF) are available
allowing multi-control options.



The picture of the remote shows 5 pre-set buttons, and this description:

programming function
- 24h timer functon
- 5 intermediate stop positions


More from the brochure on the automated curtain/panel system:


Special Qualities
> Silent Operation
> System suitable for all curtain weights and applications.
> Strong motor with low system resistance.
> Delivered pre-wired for simple 24-volt installation
> Easy control and setting of the system using infrared remote control
> In-built repeat timer function.
> up to 5 intermediate positions programmable.
> Colour co-ordinated components.
> Standard travel speed set at 15 cm / second.
> Variable speed motor facility, launching/docking speeds and distances
pre-programmed by Goelst or approved distributor.
> Standard IR control, optional momentary switch (code 6048-1001) RF
(radio frequency) is also available
> Integrated G-Rail ‘CAN-BUS’ system, allows group / individual control
of G-Rail electric curtain tracks
> Compatible with most existing BUS systems.
> Optional 6280-PRS Pilot Release system, allows curtains to be
operated by hand in the event of emergency, power failure and/or
product unfamiliarity.


One of the interesting things there is regard to the motor speeds. It appears to suggest that, should you wish to have the travel speed altered, you can ask them to do so at the factory, before they send it to you. This could be handy for some of us doing some variable width set ups in which a slow speed and fine control could be helpful.
post #60 of 103
i need horizontal motors htough
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