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To cover or not to cover?

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 
I'm curious to know how many of you in building your theaters left yourself with no windows.

I'm in an executive town house with just one side connecting. That said I have 2 36"x24" windows along the one side. For sure 1 has to be lost, but the second comes 20.5' from the back of the screen wall. This is an AT setup so I will have at least 2' to use for the stage behind the screen leaving me with 18.5ft or so of length. Doing the math, it's getting REALLY tight for my 2 rows of 3. This will be with a 130" 2.35 screen. Room is 13'4" wide.

So question is... do I lose the last remaining window to pick up whaever extra depth I want and cover it and gain a ton of design flexability? Or do I make due and leave it open. I might add the GF is indifferent.
Edited by Nighthawk26 - 12/9/13 at 8:06pm
post #2 of 8
are there other windows or exterior exits on that floor? If yes you can lose it if you want.
post #3 of 8
Thread Starter 
Jeff, assuming you are getting to the legality of it all, im looking into it. reading everything online is proving to be somewhat contradictory and not super clear. im going to check with the city this week. all this of course is irrelevant if legally I need a window. from everything im reading thus far it appears a window is only needed if there is a basement anywhere on that floor, which there is not.

that said, to answer your question directly. Nope, there would be no other windows in the basement. thats the only 2 there are a slide 36x24.
post #4 of 8

Good idea to check with the city about this, as they are the ones that will have your answer.  While you are there...I would tell them what you are trying to do and what is needed permits/inspections from the city.  Might as well do it correctly upfront.  My friend is a Realtor and was trying to sell a house for a client.  The client didn't pull permits or have an inspection.   When the buyers had an inspector come in, he wanted to remove some drywall to see how the wiring was ran and room was built.  It was a beautiful theater and the seller said no and walked away from the deal.  It has been two months since they have had any offers. 

post #5 of 8
OK here is the deal, you are in your theater and the turkey is in the oven. A fire starts and before you notice the smoke and the alarm in your soundproofed theater space the top of the stairway gets blocked with flames.

If that was my house I would engineer a removable window plug that may look like a section of your drywalled theater room but if you gave a serious tug on a handle it would fall out of the window. If the window is high you also want a step stool tall enough to get out the window.

Your local code might not require it YET. Here it started out that just basement bedrooms needed an emergency exit, then they tightened up the regs and now any finished basement space must have an exit other than the stairs. It can be in a bedroom killing two birds with one stone or anywhere else but you have to have one. Many older homes have just those tiny casement windows and they aren't acceptable. To get a permit to finish your basement you now have to have an emergency egress.
post #6 of 8
Quote:
Originally Posted by BIGmouthinDC View Post

OK here is the deal, you are in your theater and the turkey is in the oven. A fire starts and before you notice the smoke and the alarm in your soundproofed theater space the top of the stairway gets blocked with flames.

If that was my house I would engineer a removable window plug that may look like a section of your drywalled theater room but if you gave a serious tug on a handle it would fall out of the window. If the window is high you also want a step stool tall enough to get out the window.

Your local code might not require it YET. Here it started out that just basement bedrooms needed an emergency exit, then they tightened up the regs and now any finished basement space must have an exit other than the stairs. It can be in a bedroom killing two birds with one stone or anywhere else but you have to have one. Many older homes have just those tiny casement windows and they aren't acceptable. To get a permit to finish your basement you now have to have an emergency egress.

+1 safety first always.

My brother inlaw finished his basement with open HT layout, and code in Novi, Michigan dictated a window egress point.
They dug a hole and inserted one.
Can you do that, insert a new one away from your HT?
post #7 of 8
Thread Starter 
Frankly the odds of me burning down the house with my cooking is VERY possible, so I would tend to agree with you 100%. I did plan on making something so that you could still access the window, but it was more from the perspective of a potential buyer down the road not wanting things closed off. I've read VERY little about these plugs. I'm not sure I will be doing complete soundproofing as of yet so I'm sure there are lots of options to cover the winder for easy access if need be.

I suppose making another window outside there is possible, however it's not an expense I want to take on. I'm sure it would be significant. I suppose I could still use both in the theater and "plug" both?? Again wasn't my point of the question but it's important none the less; would that be a code issue? They are there but covered with a reasonable means to remove this covering? I can see a lot of ways just orienting panels conveniently to hide them. My question was is having no windows in terms of natural light in a basement a big deal?!
post #8 of 8
you don't need natural light unless you want to grow something, even then there are work arounds.
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