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Great Dane Cinema aka Brent's Budget Theater - Page 3

post #61 of 224
Thread Starter 
I have started work on the star ceiling panels! After hauling a pile of MDF sheets down the stairs I painted one side of each one black. This will be the side that will be covered with GOM fabric. The black paint serves two purposes. First, since GOM is a fairly open weave, it will insure that the MDF isn't visible through the fabric. Second, it will hopefully help the spray adhesive stick a bit better and not soak into the MDF.
After cutting only one of the panels to size I can say with great certainty that MDF makes a heck of a mess of fine sawdust. and that crap gets everywhere!
Doing a test fit of the panel before covering it with fabric was crucial. One side had to be almost 1 1/2 inches longer than the other to fit properly. I also left about 3/8 of an inch gap between the soffit sides and the panels to allow for some adjustment during the final installation. This gap will be hidden by GOM covered panels later.

The first piece test fit, no GOM and no fibers run yet.
post #62 of 224
Looking good. I left a bit of a gap around my star ceiling and was planning on covering the gap later but I ended up just leaving it. You cannot see the gap with the black fabric and my black soffit fronts. Even before I had the light tray up you could not really see the gap.
post #63 of 224
Working with MDF sucks, I try to avoid it at all cost. I made mine from what they call MDO (Medium Density Overlay) other wise known as Sign Board. It is plywood but very flat, has a paper surface fixed to one face that is great for painting or glueing (that is why it is used for signs). Also should be lighter and stiffer then MDF. With MDF you are going to want to make sure you fasten it in the middle or it will sag over time.
post #64 of 224
Thread Starter 
Yeah, the MDF sucks to work with, but it will be worth it. The MDO stuff looks pretty interesting. Too late for this project, but I'll definitely take a look at it in the future.

Tonight's activities included using my projector to trace out the stars on one of the panels. Due to space constraints in my work area. I'll be completing each panel before moving on to the next.

post #65 of 224
Thread Starter 
The past few days have been pretty productive ones.

I pre-drilled some holes around the 3 outside perimeter edges of the panel using a countersink bit. After it was covered in fabric I cut a little slot in the GOM so it wouldnt bunch up when putting a screw through the hole. I'll run drywall screws through these into 2x2 strips attached to the ceiling. After the screws are in, it looks something like this. I expect them to virtually disappear in a dark room.


The edge that will be in the middle of the room, will have no visible screws. Instead I attached some 2x3s to the panel before covering it with fabric. These will be screwed to the joists. You can see them in the finished panel pic further down this post.

Then it was time to cover the first panel with fabric. I wasnt about to toss a $300 roll of fabric on the dusty floor of my basement, even if i swept it, it would still collect all sorts of dust. So, keeping with the most redneck solution I could come up with I have this:



A couple spare 2x3s screwed to the floor joists above, some shelf brackets turned upside down to hold a rod... thats actually an extension handle for a paint roller and.. it works great!



I didnt really know how much of the spray adhesive to use, but it seems to have worked ok. I used 3M super 77. I did a test piece too, and I could still pull the fabric off if i really wanted to, but it seems to stick well enough.



I ordered a pneumatic upholstery stapler , but its not here yet. Since I was impatient and wanted to get this thing done, I used my Ryobi electric stapler. It was a real pain. That thing jams up way too much. If your doing a job that requires this many staples. Do yourself a favor and get a pneumatic stapler.

I somehow talked my 8 year old daughter into helping me run the fibers. She was pretty proud to be such a big help on this project. I hope she doesnt change her mind on the next few panels. They will have around twice as many stars as this one! After a couple hours, we had this:



The rectangles in the middle of the panel line up with strips I screwed to the joists. I'll shoot some finishing nails through these to give the middle of the panel some support.

I experimented with hot gluing the first few fibers in place using a 'low temp' hot glue gun. But it proved to be time consuming and difficult to not damage the fibers. For the rest I just put a dot of wood glue on the base of the fiber once they were in place. It was faster, easier, and made it really easy to see with holes had fibers run to them and which didn't. After the fibers were run i taped them in place so they wouldn't move around or get pinched on the mounting strips during installation. Once this was done, the glue seemed to be pointless. I'll probably use the wood glue on the next panels anyway simply to keep track of which holes have fiber easier.

Here were testing it out. The glow of the fiber bundle looked really cool, but it was hard to capture in a picture.


And....... Finally.... the first panel is in place!


Its every bit as awesome as I hoped it would be. But the best part is that my kids actually think that I finally made something cool. When we did the first test of lighting it up, my daughter told me, "Hey dad, that's actually pretty neat." As if she didn't believe me. Ha!
post #66 of 224
Thread Starter 
I finally finished filling my stage with sand. Its all put back together. I'll probably put another layer of OSB on before I put carpet in though. Between the sand filled stage and the duct liner on the walls, the room sounds much better than it did before any treatments.

.... now back to running fibers for the star ceiling....
post #67 of 224
Thread Starter 
I was playing around in Paint.NET today and made myself a nifty backdrop /intro image.

post #68 of 224
Hmmm if you want to be true to the name shouldn't the great dane be lying on the couch, or pestering you for something ?
post #69 of 224
Thread Starter 
Ha! Good point!
post #70 of 224
Thread Starter 
My dad helped me fit the third star panel into place tonight. It looks fantastic. I cant wait to get the last panel finished and in place. The 2nd and 3rd panels have a lot more stars than the first one and took significantly longer to construct. Based on my star map, i think the last one is going to take the longest. I'd estimate Ive spent around 25 - 30 hours to get to this point. Im really glad i decided to make one panel at a time. It breaks up the work nicely. I think i would have gone crazy running the fibers for all of them at once.

Its hard to take a picture of, but here are some progress pics:




post #71 of 224
Looks awesome!

Quite the family project.
post #72 of 224
Looks great, you won't need any exrta lighting!! It is a suprize how much light the star ceiling adds to the room, and the screen unfortunately.
post #73 of 224
Thread Starter 
yeah i think they are a bit bright too, even with the illuminators at their dimmest settings. I was really surprised how bright the stars are. I've thought about putting some tissue paper or something in the illuminators to block the LEDs a bit. It might give a more varied appearance to the star brightness too. Since its LED, heat or fire hazard shouldn't be an issue. Or I could color the ends of the fibers with a marker or something I suppose.
post #74 of 224
Thread Starter 
I got the last star panel put up tonight.... finally!

Here's a shot facing the screen wall:


Here's facing the rear of the room:


There's still a little fine tuning to do, but this is a huge milestone for me. Ive dreamed of installing a star ceiling since I got the idea to have a dedicated theater.
post #75 of 224
Star ceiling looks great, congrats on a job well done.

Your pattern came out great, I may have to follow your process
post #76 of 224
Thread Starter 
I've been thinking about my column design and construction. I've had this idea in the back of my mind for a while to use cabinet doors for the wood part of the construction. I think it would really speed up the construction of them and i feel that I'd have less to worry about as far as fit an finish. The panels would already be the right size, all I'd have to do is attach them to a frame. Cost wise, they might be a little more expensive, but a lot faster to build. I can get raw unfinished cabinet doors from my local Menards. Cost would be around $145 per column for the wood, which im sure is more than a typical plywood construction with trim would be, but i haven't calculated those costs yet. Does this seem to be really high? How much is reasonable to spend on column construction? Thoughts?

Here's a quick sketchup i did to give you an idea of what they might look like.
Column.jpg
post #77 of 224
Quote:
Originally Posted by meyer64 View Post

I've been thinking about my column design and construction. I've had this idea in the back of my mind for a while to use cabinet doors for the wood part of the construction. I think it would really speed up the construction of them and i feel that I'd have less to worry about as far as fit an finish. The panels would already be the right size, all I'd have to do is attach them to a frame. Cost wise, they might be a little more expensive, but a lot faster to build. I can get raw unfinished cabinet doors from my local Menards. Cost would be around $145 per column for the wood, which im sure is more than a typical plywood construction with trim would be, but i haven't calculated those costs yet. Does this seem to be really high? How much is reasonable to spend on column construction? Thoughts?
Here's a quick sketchup i did to give you an idea of what they might look like.
Column.jpg

Doesn't sound right. If you have 6 doors per column they are only $24 a piece? Could be I guess depending on what they are made out of.
post #78 of 224
Thread Starter 
the cost of each door varies depending on its size. I priced it out based on the unfinished raised panel oak cabinet doors that Menards keeps in stock. They vary in price between 20 and 35 each door. I found an online site that sells them for under $11 per square foot and offers custom sizes. I may order a sample from them too.
post #79 of 224
Quote:
Originally Posted by meyer64 View Post

the cost of each door varies depending on its size. I priced it out based on the unfinished raised panel oak cabinet doors that Menards keeps in stock. They vary in price between 20 and 35 each door. I found an online site that sells them for under $11 per square foot and offers custom sizes. I may order a sample from them too.

Yea if you can get them at that price I see no reason to mess around trying to make your own, that seems like a cheap way to go. I never did any columns in mine because of the width of the room and my seating I just didn't want to sacrifice the space, I do like the look of a room with a column though. Are you going to hide your surround speakers in them?
post #80 of 224
Thread Starter 
yes, 4 of the columns will be hiding speakers. I need to do a mockup and see how much space I'll really be losing with the columns. My side and rear surround speakers are about 9" deep, so I was planning on 10" deep columns. My dimensions look good on paper, but in practice it might make the room feel cramped. There is a chance I'll need to change my seating plans too.
post #81 of 224
Have you thought about changing your speaker selection for your surrounds? Maybe more cost up front, but in the long run give you more room by keeping the columns size down. My Triad Silver dipole surrounds are only about 4" thick. Big difference when you double that.
post #82 of 224
Thread Starter 
Right now Im using a set of Polk Audio Monitor Series speakers. Monitor 30's are used for the side and rear surrounds. I'm very happy with their performance considering they were fairly cheap, i think they were ~ $100 a pair. I previously had on wall Yamaha's which are about 4" deep , I could put those back into service but they have basically zero bass response. new speakers aren't really in the budget at the moment. My soffits are fairly deep too, since i had to work around existing duct work, and I'm concerned if i make the columns too shallow the proportions wont look right. I think my next step is to build some mock up columns to get an idea of proper dimensions in the room. The speakers themselves hanging on the wall don't seem like they protrude too far at least.
post #83 of 224
Being that they are rear ported speakers is their any concern about putting them in the colum, basically mounting them into a recess and having problems with the port?

Don't know if you have a stud wall on both sides of your theater, but if you do you could recess the speakers into the stud cavity which would take 4" off the depth of your columns.

Like tbraden32 I went the Triad route, I have the Gold Surrounds though. Originally the plan was on walls but then after looking at the room I really wanted to clean it up and not see any speakers on the walls, so dug really deap and got the inwalls, glad I did. If I had the column option that would have gave me more choices with speakers though. Only thing I wish I had done after the fact is go with diffrent fabric so the speakers could be hidden behind the wall fabric, as it is I still have the grills on the walls. I found that the selection of AT fabric you can use in front of a speaker is pretty limited though.
post #84 of 224
Interesting build - especially the masking.

AVS needs a "show us ya dog" thread biggrin.gif
post #85 of 224
Thread Starter 
I've decided to to carpet shopping after work today. Menards is running some sales with fairly good prices. Im not planning to get anything too fancy. But Im struggling to decide on a color. I was looking at this:
http://menards.com/main/flooring/carpet/frieze-carpet/citation-success-frieze-carpet-12ft-wide/p-1694132-c-6541.htm Either in that color or a solid dark brown (no online pic unfortunately). I'm not sure which way to go. I was almost set on the dark brown but I think the dark brown might make the room too dark overall. the taupe sample i have has some color variation, but no pattern. and Im fine with that. The dark brown almost looks black and Im sure will look like a black hole with the lights off, But Im not sure if thats a good thing. I dont want people tripping on steps or having trouble finding their way. A bit of contrast with a slightly lighter carpet might be nice too.

Opinions?
post #86 of 224
Thread Starter 
Ok.. update time. I have reworked the masking system so that the mechanics of it are hidden behind the screen wall and in the soffit. I built a channel out of 1x4 s and a 1x6 that the panel tracks and traverse rod sit inside. I got out my sawzall and modified the soffit framing so the channel could be mounted so the bottom of it is flush with the underside of the soffit.
IMG_7414Large.jpg

I changed out my makeshift wooden brackets that connect the traverse rod to the masking panels for slightly less makeshift and more robust aluminum brackets.

IMG_7422Large.jpg

I also mounted the rotor assembly vertically on the wall behind the screen wall and enclosed it in a box lined with fiberglass insulation.
IMG_7428Large.jpg
IMG_7427Large.jpg

The result is much quieter operation and due to the cord being shorter, more accurate stopping points.


Next I started work on finishing the soffits. I framed the front soffit curve to match that of the stage. The face of it is mdf covered in black GOM. I was lucky to be able to use GOM scraps left over from the star ceiling. Unfortunately the amount left on my roll isnt long enough to finish the perimeter of the room, so I'll need to order some more. I'll need more for the walls anyway, so its not a big deal.
IMG_7415Large.jpg

Before I covered the MDF in GOM, I used the soffit assembly as a jig to cut the trim piece for the bottom. I first traced it out and rough cut with my jigsaw, then used a flush trim bit on my fancy new router to get a nice smooth curve. I am very happy with the result. Eventually the curve will be transferred to a piece of oak using the same process.

Here is what the front of the room looks like now. The masking panels will need to be redone since they are too short now that the track is higher.

IMG_7419Large.jpg
post #87 of 224
Thread Starter 
And now Im back to my debate about the carpet. Below are two samples Im looking at, mocked up against my wall fabric. The wood trim will be stained a darker color. The carpet is nothing fancy, but it meets my budget requirements.

The first is a thicker, more plush frieze. this one is available in a very dark brown also, but i've pretty much decided against that.
carpet2.jpg


the second is more of a berber, with a pattern, but is not as plush. I think I like the color slightly better.
carpet1.jpg
post #88 of 224
Thread Starter 
Well, I ended up deciding on the second carpet option from my previous post. I think it will look much better in the room to have a little bit of a pattern to it. I also decided to do the carpet installation myself and picked up a carpet stretcher.

But before I can do that I have a few pesky projects to finish first. Tonight I finished redoing my riser steps. The way they were before they were too shallow and were probably
more of a safety hazard than anything. The new reworked steps are much more usable. Plus I finally got my step lights permenently installed.

06d2b8f0e3c215e95f6d96e4a0aa96f7_zpsee8ac235.jpg

8e4df39f65c01927bc04b8c2256a74ef_zps94ef0a43.jpg

I think I'm going to put a second layer of OSB on the riser like I did with the stage too. But that means another trip to town with my dads truck so the carpet installation might be slightly delayed, especially since funds are hurting after the carpet purchase.. I can't imagine what the really nice stuff would cost, plus cost of installation if I didn't do it myself.
post #89 of 224
I agree on the carpet with a pattern will look better.

I have one layer of 3/4 OSB on my riser and I don't see the need for anymore, I filled it with fiberglass insulation also.
post #90 of 224
Thread Starter 
Carpet is in! I did the installation myself, with a bit of help from the kids and girlfriend. It really wasn't too difficult but did take some time. I bought a cheapo carpet stretcher for this job since it wasn't much more than renting one, plus I'll have it to use in the future. It took me 3 nights to finish. The curved steps on the stage and riser took the longest, but I really like the way it turned out. The curved face of the stage is still bare OSB and will be covered in some oak trim , same for the curved face of the riser.

IMG_7472Large_zps94b226f4.jpg


you can see that I didn't completely trim out the riser front near the wall. This is going to be covered by the columns anyway so I didn't bother with it. The columns will sit on top of the carpet and will be semi easily removable if they need to be for whatever reason.

IMG_7482Large_zpsb3cd4a02.jpg
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