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The Esquire Theater!! Construction Begins... - Page 51

post #1501 of 1756
I'll have to get off my butt and do a bit of cleaning and/or work before you come.
post #1502 of 1756
When are you guys having an Albany HT meet?
post #1503 of 1756
Thread Starter 
When are you coming up here Ted?? I'm sure we can put something together!
post #1504 of 1756
Benji, the carpet looks GREAT! - the carpet joints are invisible and looks very neatly done.

Congratulations and good luck with the final stages of your build - enjoy it

post #1505 of 1756
Guess my memeory is bad....I've got Berkline 12010s. They look really similar except mine don't have the stitching in the seat back and bottom. They do have it in the headrest and foot rest and that same little curve in the arm rest.

post #1506 of 1756
How did the door seal end up performing? I need to get a few and not sure what company to go with.
post #1507 of 1756
Thread Starter 
Thanks Will! I wish I had your finishing skills!

Tom - I almost ended up with those 12010's...do you like them?

Adam - The door seals are doing an excellent job...as carpet holder-downers on my living room floor. I haven't had a chance to install them yet, but I did a bunch of research and the Zero International products seem to have the best performance. Plus, you know that you'll receive the best advice and support from Ted and John at the Soundproofing Company...and their price is right too.

Progress - Not much to report here this week, although I did fix the entry door last night. I originally just stuck it up there so the carpet guys could work with it, but last night I finally got it level, square, plumb etc. Unfortunately I have a gap at the top that's a little bigger than I would like for soundproofing purposes...looks like a call to Ted is in order. I have some leftover putty packs so maybe between that and some SilenSeal I will be able to plug that gap acceptably.

Staples were delivered yesterday, door seals are waiting for me too, OC703 is coming today, upholstery stapler tomorrow...I'm going to be busy this weekend!
post #1508 of 1756
Tom - I almost ended up with those 12010's...do you like them?

I like them fine. After drywall and wall treatments I was somewhat width constrained and needed something a little smaller than the 090s that I would have preferred. On the real plus side, LOGANESS likes the smaller chair. I just find myself bumping the seat control button when I shift around. No big deal. Overall, I'm quite happy with them. And so far, they've stood up to the dog who refuses to get into the chair WITH the quilted pad covering it and climbs up the one without.
post #1509 of 1756
Thread Starter 
Not a big update here today but I did get some theater work done this weekend. The entry door is now painted to match the walls on the inside of the HT. Still haven't decided what I'm going to do on the other side of the door but that may be a project a little further down the road. (Sorry I forgot to take a pic of the door for everyone...I'm going to try to find door hardware tonight so maybe I'll have a pic of that tomorrow.)

I also made some additonal acoustic treatments for the area to the immediate left and right of the screen but they haven't been installed yet. Here are a few pics of the fabric panels I built for above/below the screen.

Top panel painted black...ready for fabric. That Porter Cable upholstery stapler is worth every penny. It's great if you have any significant quantity of staples to install.

Here is the bottom panel with fabric going on...

And here are some installed pics. Pretty difficult to see the fabric, but I guess that's the point!

That's all for now...more progress this week I hope!
post #1510 of 1756
Hey Ben,

Build is looking great!

What is the stage covered/finished with?

Also take some up close pics of the door seals when you install them.
post #1511 of 1756
Thread Starter 
Thanks jcorbin - The stage is covered with a simple black carpet (no pad underneath). I don't even know what brand they installed - I just asked the guy who came to measure to find the darkest black sample they had and get that one. It's not quite as black as the GOM fabric but it's pretty close -the pic above is deceiving because the screen lights are shining down full strength on it. In hindsight it's pretty shocking that I just decided to wing it on the black carpet when I have been pretty ridiculously OCD over my entire project...

I'm hoping to find time to finish up the door and seals this weekend - I will be sure to take some pics.
post #1512 of 1756
Ben, it's looking great. I'll have to come by after my trip.

You might want to stop by and see how I did my door seals since I had a couple of issues and mine are the same as yours. Oh, and to pick up your threshold supplies!
post #1513 of 1756
Andreas, the seals are OK at this point?
post #1514 of 1756
It's really turning out great, Ben!
post #1515 of 1756
Originally Posted by Ted White View Post

Andreas, the seals are OK at this point?

Ted, yes....although I need to finish caulking in a few spots around the door since I didn't before putting on a couple of pieces of drywall and the door jamb. I have some sound leakage, but it is likely from lack of caulk. I can't get give quite final judgement yet. Unfortunately my progress is really slow right now...or has been slow for a while, I should say....while Ben speeds up!
post #1516 of 1756
No, no way!
post #1517 of 1756
Thread Starter 
Not too much recent progress but here's a quick update.

I have watched 4 or 5 movies recently and I'm going to have to do something about the equipment room - it's getting too hot. Luckily, I have a supply and return in the room, but they're currently connected to my main HVAC system and that's not cutting it. The room is next to a crawlspace in my basement so I have some room to build a dead vent or rearrange the lines. I'll have to add a temp controlled fan and do some sort of air exchange with the adjacent room. Ugh, more work.

I also had a hard time finding door handles I liked and it's really easy to be OCD about stuff when I don't have much time for actual progress in the theater. rolleyes.gifredface.gif I was looking for something pretty specific:
1 - A lever, not a knob.
2 - A keyed handle. This is probably silly but I just feel happier with a key.
3 - Something heavy to help a little with soundproofing the hole in the door. Michelmia also told me that his first handle was too flimsy and didn't work well because of the pressure created by the door seals.
4 - Reasonable price...hopefully under $100 per handle.

I searched to the very end of the interwebs but didn't find anything I liked that met all of the criteria. I had never heard of the store called Tuesday Morning but it turned out that had exactly what I was looking for. Two solid brass levers (one for the equipment room) and a deadbolt. And they're super heavy too. And the price was right - they were on clearance: $139 for each piece marked down to $19.99 for each piece?!?! eek.gifeek.gif So I saved $360! biggrin.gif

So last night I tried using a chisel for the first time to fit a differently shaped strike plate in the door. Wow that was slow going (I really didn't want to mess it up). But now one of the two handles is installed and I will do the other two and the threshold tonight (FINALLY). Here's a pic...the handle looks a little brassy due to the flash but it looks black in person.

post #1518 of 1756
Hey Ben. Things are looking great. As I was reading your last post I kept thinking that you were going to have to delve into commercial levers to meet your needs, but congrats on the awesome deal you scored on the exact items you were looking for. We all know that rarely happens.......I guess we can chalk it up to Venus passing across the sun or something.

Regarding your heat issues....I did a cursory search of your thread and didn't see any really detailed pictures of the rack and/or room with the all the equipment installed. Is it an enclosed Middle Atlantic rack? Is it the whole room you are looking to bring to ambient. If your rack is closed you can always add Middle Atlantic whisper fans or use something like a "coolstack" from Active Thermal Management (http://www.activethermal.com/default.htm) to get the heat out of the rack. But then you have to get it out of the room. Active Thermal Management makes a product called "System 1" which you could use. Middle Atlantic makes a product called "Duct Cool". Both of these professional solutions come at a professional price. To extract the heat from the room you could use a simple Panasonic WHISPER bath fan (50 cfm should be plenty) and connect it to a digital high voltage thermostat, like the Honeywell TL8230A1003 for $48, along with some insulated 4" duct line running from your fan to your storage area. You'll save about $300 over the professional solutions, that's for sure. So if you could, please post some detailed pics of your equipment room.

I hope this info helps!
post #1519 of 1756
Thread Starter 
Hi TMcG - great to hear from you and thanks for your input! The gear isn't in a MA rack at this point but it will be in the future. My issue isn't cooling the rack etc. - the equipment room is small (about 4.5' x 9.5') and I would like to bring the ambient temp down a bit in that entire space. I am also thinking about building a projector hushbox that will exhaust air into the equipment room, so that will exacerbate the heat issue I currently have.

I don't have any recent pics of the equipment room but the two pics below probably best illustrate the situation. I'm hoping it's a pretty easy fix. The equipment room and theater were designed as one room for soundproofing purposes and then a partition wall was added to turn them into two rooms...like this:

Here is the back of the theater with the drywall shell finished but before the equipment room partition was added. The bump out in the back is the equipment room. Dimensions are about 4.5' x 9.5' and this whole area gets too warm over the course of a movie. There is a supply and a return in the equipment room - I hope that simply adding the Panasonic fans mentioned above and a thermostat will be an adequate solution to increase the airflow and reduce heat buildup a bit. The current situation isn't terrible, but when you step into the equipment room there is a very noticeable temperature change.

And here is the partition wall in progress...
The orange tube in the ceiling is the basic location of the projector...it would be easy to build a hushbox for it and poke a hole through the partition wall to exhaust heat into the equipment room. My problem is a potential height clearance issue for those sitting in the back row of the theater...I haven't measured carefully yet but I think it may not be an option.


So...do you think the Panasonic fans (or similar) will work here?
post #1520 of 1756
Originally Posted by AirBenji View Post

My issue isn't cooling the rack etc. - the equipment room is small (about 4.5' x 9.5') and I would like to bring the ambient temp down a bit in that entire space. I am also thinking about building a projector hushbox that will exhaust air into the equipment room, so that will exacerbate the heat issue I currently have. There is a supply and a return in the equipment room - I hope that simply adding the Panasonic fans mentioned above and a thermostat will be an adequate solution to increase the airflow and reduce heat buildup a bit. The current situation isn't terrible, but when you step into the equipment room there is a very noticeable temperature change. So...do you think the Panasonic fans (or similar) will work here? Thanks!

Yes, the Panasonic fans will definitely work. Given the size of your equipment room (I didn't realize it was that big), I would probably bump it up to an 80CFM model such as the Panasonic FV-08VK3 This fan will hook up to either a 4" or a 6" duct line directly, fyi. Panasonic also makes the exact same unit with a variable speed control to the fan, but probably not worth the extra expense.

Now, I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but the existing HVAC is a problem, unless it is a system 100% dedicated to the home theater zone. The problem is that given your northern climate, you are using the heating more than you would be using the cooling. As a consequence, your supply air will actually be supplying heat into your home theater equipment closet during your heating months. Having the return air there is no problem, provided there is enough supply to the whole room to equate to the air your are returning. So you have three options: 1. Remove the supply completely from your main supply trunk line and REUSE that line for the Panasonic fan to exhaust by discharge the heat; 2. Install very good dampers (ideally in two spots) where you can block the airflow coming through that supply during your heating months and then just separately install and duct the Panasonic fan, or 3. Re-route the supply into the main area of the theater and duct the Panasonic fan separately out of the equipment closet. Without researching it, I am not fully aware of what your total CFM input and output for the theater and equipment room is. But there is also one other complicating matter....like most well-built theaters with meticulous attention to detail to soundproof the room, the room is considered extremely tight. So it is absolutely critical that you get the total supply and total return as balanced (equal) as possible. Otherwise if you are returning more air through the HVAC than you are supplying AND you now have an 80 CFM Panasonic fan drafting air from the theater into the equipment room and then vented out, you could wind up with what's called a negative pressure situation (deficit of supply). This negative pressure will make your sealed door very difficult to close as you will be fighting the pressure of the incoming air to be in pressure balance. If I were you, I would probably hire a professional to come in with his CFM anemometer and make the definitive recommendation and/or adjustments to your primary HVAC supply and return, given that the 80CFM of air removal from the theater by the Panasonic fan is a fixed measurement. It might be $200, but money well-spent to get things dialed in right. An intermediary step would be if you have a local tool rental place that can rent you the cfm anemometer (typically a $200 tool) and take the measurements yourself during maximum heating and cooling cycles. You may then find a willing HVAC shop to help you through any changes that need to be made via phone with the experience and calculation tools they have at their disposal.

Regarding the hush box - I would probably skip it. Seems like a lot of hassle for only a little db reduction payoff. Now if the primary reason to do it is that you feel your room is getting warm over the course of a full day of movie-watching, especially with all the chairs filled, then exhausting that heat directly into the equipment room for removal probably is a good idea if there is no way to keep the room 100% comfortable through proper balancing of the supply and return lines in the theater. Some food for thought.
Edited by TMcG - 6/7/12 at 9:22am
post #1521 of 1756
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the good info TMcG -

I do have motorized dampers on the supply lines to the theater and to the equipment room so that I won't be adding heat in the winter. There is a thermostat in the theater that opens the dampers when the temperature falls below X in the winter or rises above Y in the summer. I realize that this isn't ideal for air exchanges in the room and leaves potential for the suffocation of movie watchers, etc. rolleyes.gif

HVAC should be my contribution to the "what I would do differently next time" thread. I'm a total novice when it comes to home improvement and I was substantially more green when I started this project. I had a lot of obstructions and very few usable joist spaces. I called a few HVAC contractors who came over and I basically asked them "how would you solve this?" Of course, I got wildly varying answers and wildly varying price quotes. When I started, my budget estimate for the whole theater project was also off dramatically. At this point, I realize that HVAC is pretty important (an understatement) and spending an extra $2K on it would have been a no-brainer.

I spent a ton of time (and a bunch of pages of this thread redface.gif) thinking of solutions. I'm unqualified and could have saved myself a lot of headache by admitting that. In hindsight, I should have kindly asked Dennis for a solution and implemented it. Write check...move on. rolleyes.gif

For now, I think the plan will be to remove the equipment room supply and return lines from the main house HVAC. I will add the fan and do an air exchange with the adjacent room in the basement. thanks again TMcG! smile.gif
post #1522 of 1756
Is your current HVAC system considered a dual zone system? The other question is if your dampers are what's called "normally open" or "normally closed". My hunch from your description is that they are "normally closed" and only open when called for by the theater thermostat. I see two problems - first, there would probably never be an instance where you would want the equipment room damper open during the heating season and second, if your theater stays at roughly the same temperature range without calling for heating or cooling, the air in that room may get a bit stale. The normal work-around for this issue is that you have the dampers open when you call for just the HVAC fan to run, thereby force-ventilating the room with ambient air.

I have to agree - the HVAC is by far the most overlooked item on the check list because it is so prohibitively expensive in most cases to modify an existing system or install a new dedicated system. It unbelievably difficult to stand back and cut a check for $4000 - $7000 for work that seems exceedingly high for labor and disproportionately low in actual materials cost. You will see in my construction thread (once I get it up and running) that I worked a deal with a local HVAC company to give me the design, materials, advice and installation of the main HVAC unit for about $6000 less than what they were asking. So they pulled the permit and then inspected my part of the work before completing their portion and having it inspected. They helped me to properly size the supply and return lines to the theater area, but I will probably be hiring Dennis to handle the subtle nuances of linear slot diffuser sizing for supply lines and any special magic, such as a dead vent, for the return. It's the best I could do on my budget without making it almost to the end and not having carpet, a screen, a projector and seating. I guess we'll see how well the design works in a few months.....

By the way, an alternative to buying a dedicated Middle Atlantic rack is simply buying the rack rails and mounting them to a framed opening, similar to a window. The rack shelves would be completely open and free-floating in the back which might make sense for your room vs. having something you may have to put on wheels to access the back for wiring / maintenance.
post #1523 of 1756
Thread Starter 
No - the current system isn't dual zone. I considered that but would have had a hard time getting the zones to be similar sizes and I was concerned about cost (although again in hindsight it should've been a no-brainer).

In terms of normally open or normally closed, the ducts in the theater can be set either way. For now I have them set to stay open unless the theater gets too cold (which hasn't happened yet).

So when do we get to see the start of the StoneWater Cinema?
post #1524 of 1756
Very soon, my friend. I promised myself by next weekend I would get it up and running.
post #1525 of 1756
Thread Starter 
Well it has been quite a long time since I have posted any legitimate progress. redface.gif Work has been keeping me really busy. And of course, now that I have made a little progress and have taken a few pics to boot, photobucket seems to be a bit cranky this morning and won't let me upload my pics!

Anyway, I finally put the door seals on this weekend and they are AMAZING. (Not the door bottom though - I need to have the carpet guys come back and tuck the edge into the threshold - that should be next week.) Even without the door bottom, there is a huge difference in the amount of sound escaping from my room. I did some very subjective testing last night - I put music on about as loud as I would ever want it in the room and went upstairs. Awesome. Bass drums are barely audible and the remainder of the sound is entirely gone. If you turn on a TV or have basic light conversation upstairs, you would never know that music was playing in the basement.

There are a few loose ends to tie up to finish the soundproofing, but I am already 200% satisfied with the results. Very very much worth the extra effort.

Pics to follow once I stop fighting with photobucket... smile.gif
post #1526 of 1756
Thread Starter 
So I have been investigating crown molding recently and am trying to decide between two designs. The first two pics below are from brucelooney. I like this design because I have limited ceiling height and panels on the wall - I don't want the room to feel too cramped.

The third pic is from Lynea Moldings. Gonzo did something similar. I already know I'm going to get flamed up for the hearts. Go ahead, flame away. smile.gif I really the two-tiered approach because it will show off the detail of the molding well - I'm thinking of black molding with a silver accent. (NOT hearts. smile.gif) But this option might be eliminated once I mock it up and look at the ceiling height issue. Anyone have thoughts?




post #1527 of 1756
I lean towards simple/clean lines vs. ornate, so #1 appeals to me personally quite a bit more than #2.
post #1528 of 1756
I don't know what your personal style is, let alone the style of your house...but to my eyes you have a very modern looking theater with clean lines and colors. I think you have an opportunity to go with a more modern looking crown molding vs. the traditional styles you picked here. Something like THIS style from OVerstock.com has a very simple and clean line similar to your theater's style.

Although expensive, a good resource to look at crown molding profiles from every genre is www.invitinghome.com. I really like their Art Deco crowns. There is a contemporary crown molding called Memphis which you may like with your room.

What do you think of the 4" contemporary crown cove molding here as an idea?

Are you also looking at the possibility of creating a cove with the crown to illuminate with LEDs? If you are, you could even look at 8" deep by 3" or 4" high cove moldings which are specifically designed to provide a lit cove while maximizing ceiling headroom.
Edited by TMcG - 6/27/12 at 6:12am
post #1529 of 1756
Go with #1 looks like a winner
post #1530 of 1756
Agree with TMcG.
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