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Andy's Maple Ale Theatre - Page 6

post #151 of 173
Thread Starter 
Originally Posted by jdanforth View Post


You betcha !! Just no beer... (you'll find out why:eek:)
post #152 of 173
Thread Starter 
Catching Up ...

I modified the speaker stand to make it wider to hold the L and R channels.

The other cat likes to sit on anything I am working on:

Everything is now at the AT screen level with the exception of the sub.

(Lights are $4 clamp lamps from IKEA that take $9 bulbs. LOL.)

When the screen is up and the lights are off the speaker highlights are okay. I would need to move the speakers back farther to improve the effect, but it is not bad for now.

For the screen support I followed Big's minimalist methodology. Boy am I glad I stumbled on that thread, as I had all these plans to build this thing with all these 2x4s. In the end I used two 2x4s (one at each end) and one long 1x4 across between then where the screen will hang from. Again, I used the wisdom from the Seymour DIY instructions and the screen hangs from two opposing pieces of tapered trim. This makes it easy to lift on and off in case I need to get behind.
post #153 of 173
Thread Starter 
My Wife Makes Screen Curtains !

Still mulling over the masking question (what to do, what to do) I explained what I was trying to accomplish to my wife. In the end we both agreed the best thing to do in the short term (to get the system running by Christmas) was use simple velvet drapes. Maybe next year when I have time I might do something more elaborate with motors as per my original plan, but for now this will do.

We found some reasonable suspension rails from IKEA and used the same velveteen that I used for the screen frame as it seems to absorb light quite well. The fact that my wife got out the sewing machine to sew curtains even though she was not entirely clear on the concept (basically going on my word of contrast) is a sure sign she loves me. We had to make sure the kids were not in the house as my sweetie starts talking like a trucker when she is sewing.

Once the curtains were done we hung them up and did a few projector tests (since the kids were out). My wife was quite amazed at the difference the masking curtains make.

I think the curtains work great. They are easy to move in or push back, and they look classy. Even without a weight to keep the lines straight they give that classy theatre look.

Here they are in 4:3, Widescreen, and Cinemascope ...

post #154 of 173
Thread Starter 
New INSTEON Devices

While my wife was working the fabric I fiddled with some last lighting bits.

I ordered another regular insteon dimmer to control the step lights. The OutletLinc (insteon plug) has this stupid thing called Load-Sense, meaning it is always giving a trickle current and any low power devices like LEDs never turn completely off.

However this new device (and my master keypad I later found out) would not respond to Scene programming on my ISY99i. It was really frustrating as I could turn them on and off, just not in a scene. It turns out I had to upgrade my ISY firmware to support these latest devices, and once that was done I had to:
- delete device from isy99i
- pull tab out for 15s for air gap to reset
- relink from isy
- then add into scenes
(slight grumble)

And yes, I got it working. Love this stuff. I'll do a demo post in the future.

I also worked on putting the connectors on most of my cat6e cables. Thank goodness I had borrowed a cable tester from a friend at work (thanks Steve!) ... I don't know where my head was and the first cable of the day took 4 tries to get it working properly.

Great documentation comes with the cable tester.

LOL biggrin.gif
post #155 of 173
Thread Starter 
Sink !

Putting in the sink should be straight forward - there are even bathroom rough-ins for the drains in the furnace room right next to where I want to put it. However I don't know the standards for the slope of a drain running sideways for 6-10ft (or venting standards for that matter) and I am running short on time. I decided this would be one of those things I pay someone to do. My schedule finally aligned with a recommended plumber and now we have a nice sink on our counter!

post #156 of 173
Originally Posted by andymo View Post

My Wife Makes Screen Curtains !
The fact that my wife got out the sewing machine to sew curtains even though she was not entirely clear on the concept (basically going on my word of contrast) is a sure sign she loves me. We had to make sure the kids were not in the house as my sweetie starts talking like a trucker when she is sewing.

Now that is sweet and funny! Interesting how guys have language challenges frequently that aren't funny but, when our wives do its so hilarious!

Your new curtains work great. Do you have a photo with the house lights on?

Andy your theater really is looking fantastic.

post #157 of 173
Thread Starter 
Thanks Dale !

Hmmm ... you are correct - I still need to post a near-final sequence. I'll have to get on that. smile.gif
post #158 of 173
Thread Starter 
The Story Of The Leaking Keg

There is a little alcove part of the basement that we never really knew what to do with. Built-in shelving? Secret room behind shelving ?

Then one day my wife saw a little bar fridge/kegerator at Costco and bought it for me for father's day. It fits in the alcove almost perfectly. I love my wife.

I didn't get it fully assembled until October and it ran famously upstairs in the kitchen for our annual halloween party. It's nice and cold - so cold in fact that I had the beer line too close to the back of the 'fridge and it froze a little bit.

The only modification I thought it needed was better cooling in the beer tower, to keep that beer from getting warm and causing foam. So I found some great mod ideas on the 'net and built a fan that pushes air up into the tower from inside.

[missing image: keg_mod_inside.jpg]

Jump ahead about 6 weeks and I am rushing around trying to finish everything for a Christmas launch of the home theatre, as well as a New Years party/hangout that we will be hosting. I should have know things were going to be ill-fated when I kept hitting small roadblocks at the different micro-breweries:
- sorry, we just spray painted our new kegs and I can't fill them until tomorrow
- sorry we are closed today for our staff christmas party
- sorry, i made a mistake, we are out of the lager.

Finally I got a 30L keg, moved the fridge downstairs and hooked it all up. I had thick garbage bags spread everywhere to protect the carpet in case I dripped during the tapping. All done. Mmm.. tasty beer on tap.

Unfortunately in my rush I didn't notice that a small gasket had fallen out. eek.gif

I spent the next 24h or so running around trying to finish other Christmas errands and stuff. All the while a small drip of beer was coming out of one corner of the fridge and going into the brand new carpet. Christmas Eve morning I walk by the keg and my foot goes "squish".

(insert your favourite expletive here, as well as those of your friends) mad.gifmad.gif

I see the drip, open the fridge and more beer splashes out. I frantically move fridge-keg-everything into the storage room and secure in industrial garbage bags to contain the leak until after I address the carpet. I am guessing over 10L of beer was spilled. I rip the carpet back and start cutting out underpadding until I get to the edge of the spill. I probably removed about 5 sq meters of soaked underpadding.

Many phone calls, but it seems all carpet cleaners are booked for the day and not coming back until after the holidays (it was after noon on Christmas eve, after all). Luckily we eventually found a local guy who was just on his way home and was able to stop by and clean both sides and treat the area. Thank goodness.

Over the next several days we had fans running and I kept flipping the carpet to ensure everything was okay. Eventually I got back to the keg and discovered the problem. By then, almost all of the keg was gone and I took an industrial garbage bag of draft beer outside and emptied it on the curb.frown.gif

Overall it was isolated to a far corner of the basement, but I am still very mad at myself for letting this happen. It could have been a lot worse.

This consumed most of my spare minutes over the holiday, thus the belated notice of the theatre launch.

Now on to more updates !
post #159 of 173
Thread Starter 
The All-Powerful Mickey Mouse Phone

This is my Mickey Mouse Phone:

I have had this since I was a teenager and was really excited to pull it out and use it in the basement. Unfortunately Mickey is just a bit too powerful and malevolent (who'da thunk it?). Plugging Mickey into a phone jack kills not only my phone line, but it also brings down my internet and my security system. Yikes! eek.gif

Next summer project: take Mickey apart, inject Kryptonite, re-assemble.
post #160 of 173
Thread Starter 
A 3D Christmas

My wife has been great at going along with this big project, but I guess that over time I had forgotten that she is not seeing all of the many fantastic images and posts on this forum that I have seen to keep me inspired over the past 3 years. So it was hilarious when I took her one night to demo the Panny AE8000 at a nearby store. They played some clips for us, and for 3D they showed the famous Potato Cod scene from Under The Sea. She was amazed, and when we got back in the car she looked at me with huge excited eyes and said "We are going to have one of THOSE in our basement ?!?!!". That spark totally helped me drive to Christmas completion.

So for Christmas my folks gave me a 3D Blu Ray player (Sony '590) and we gave the boys each a 3D movie and glasses. To my wife I gave the Under the Sea 3D BluRay.

It also has a special importance because our first open-water dive happened to be at Cod Hole, the place where you see these couch-sized beasties.

(my wife is in the right photo. She doesn't know that the cod is coming up behind her!)

I have to say I am also very pleased with the Sony BD player. The loading and remote response times are waaay better than my old Sony. Also the "smart" internet features are not too bad. I initially just dismissed them as marketing "me-too" isms, but I was able to pull up 3D clips of all sorts very quickly for fun watching. Outside of movie services it is still mostly novelty, but fun none-the-less.

Our first feature-length 3D film was Ice Age 4 - Continental Drift. Great fun in 3D!

What a great Christmas !
post #161 of 173
Wow what a great space you have created for you and your family. Might just be the inspiration for me to get off my lazy &$$ and get started on my theater/bar/man cave room thingy. I might pick your brain about your Insteon lighting controls, I'm planning on the same type of setup. Enjoy the fruits of your labor
post #162 of 173
Thread Starter 
Thanks rmajor55 ! It's hard to believe I'm at this point. I hope to post something on Insteon for my own benefit as well.
post #163 of 173
Thread Starter 
3D Charging Shelf

I picked up a powered USB hub and mounted it in our media shelf so we have a place to charge all of the glasses.

Here is the top part of the shelves. Backlog of all of the discs I got at the Blockbuster and Rogers liquidations that I have to watch (yay!)

post #164 of 173
Thread Starter 
HDMI Splitter

The HDMI splitter I ordered from Sewell showed up just in time for the offical launch. I am using it to split my video signal so I can run everything from my in-rack monitor. That way I can set things up, or do a quick show program, without having to wait to turn the projector on or use up bulb hours. It works great, especially when I am playing music through the main speakers it is nice to not have the PJ on just to select albums or see what is playing.

Unfortunately the splitter does not seem to be passing along 3D capability properly. I know that HDMI automatically sets itself to the lowest common denominator, but even if the PJ is the only thing in the splitter it is still not recognized as a 3D device. So to watch 3D I have to bypass the splitter. (grumble grumble - I don't like moving HDMI connectors around a lot)

We'll see what Sewell has to say, but I don't like having to RNA things over the border.
post #165 of 173
I followed your link from Spaceman's thread. I really enjoyed reading through all of your posts. Great work on your basement.
post #166 of 173
Nice build Andy I really like your design.
post #167 of 173
Thread Starter 
erichoya, W00lly,

Thanks guys. I appreciate your compliments.

While I was away on a boys weekend the main house 'fridge at home died. The good news was that it was not the compressor, it was just the starter module. The bad news is that it fused itself to the compressor. So I am running around trying to find a new 'fridge. Bye bye $$.
post #168 of 173
That sucks. The fridge dying would be bad enough, but usually they are full of perishable food mad.gif
post #169 of 173
That's a cool theatre space you have there!!!
post #170 of 173
Hey Andy. GREAT thread!! I remember coming across your thread before with all the fantastic animations . . . but I think the late hour, Killian's Red (or both) got the best of me so I am glad I found your thread again. I just went through and re-read your entire thread and I am very impressed with your theater.

One favor - you have some great screen shots but do you plan to post some more photos of the theater itself with the lights on? Would love to see everything a bit more clearly, including the seating area.

What has been your overall impression of the Panny 8000?
post #171 of 173
Thread Starter 
Thanks for your kind words TMcG !

Yes - I have more to post, but the past few months have been really busy and I only get the occasional trip here to AVS-land. I still haven't written our Christmas letter ! Thanks for the poke!

As for the '8000 , my family and I really like it. It doesn't do our laundry, but boy does it put on a good show ! I will do some further tweaking once I get more hours on the lamp, but as with most things about the unit I don't feel internally pressured to do it right away (eg. there is nothing bugging me that makes me want to do it right now).

Now ... off to do that letter. ...
post #172 of 173
Originally Posted by andymo View Post

But the big point that I didn't see noted too often is that you want the condensate lines there to keep priming the P-trap in the floor drain, otherwise the P-trap would dry out and you get the smell of a thousand houses in your basement (or their sewers at least :-) )

I'm pretty sure it's too late for that, but for anyone ready the thread, a product similar to anti-freeze can be used and never dry out. This is what should be used. No need to keep it wet.

post #173 of 173
Just stumbled upon this thread, I must say you did a fantastic job and the results are amazing!
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