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Laminate Screen Material and Testing! - Page 2

post #31 of 2849
Thread Starter 
Ericglo my searches weren't initially for laminate, they were for Sintra, Celtec, and substrates like that. I did check Wilsonart out when you recommended it, and no I didn't start searching for cabinet companies looking for laminate. Laminate is a totally new direction I just started checking on.

To answer why I didn't call the corporate office... there is a local distributor and dealer here so I contacted them. Maybe the main office can help, but when their local distributor told me to go through a local dealer because they don't sell direct to private individuals, then the dealer says they don't carry anything in that size and sends you to a company that hangs up on you that doesn't leave a positive impression about the company... at least not dealing direct with them. Every local Wilsonart dealer listed from the Wilsonart website refered me to Connecticuit Plywood Corp, who are the ones that hung up on me... So I decided to wait until I can make it to Saratoga before calling more places.

I still have to check Lowes and HD in Saratoga, it's an hour drive to get there but both places have been helpful in the past so they probably will take the extra step to special order something. The stores close to me say they won't make special orders. I will definitely ask them about Wilsonart. The Wilsonart dealer was helpful enough to answer some questions and said their Decorative Metal series in chrome is basically a laminate mirror... that in of itself makes this worth pursuing. Talking to Saratoga HD on the phone they are saying the Wilsonart laminate is around $3 a square foot, that seems a bit high from what you are seeing in your area. Saratogo Lowes said on the phone they can't get the Decorative Metal laminate... I'll be out that way soon so I'll stop and talk to them in person.

There is still that company in MA that sells the Celtric and he did say he could check on a 5x10 sheet of it, but he wasn't sure if he could get it, but he said he'd try. His best guess on a price was $150-175.

Ericglo I really do appreciate your input and never intended anyone to have bad feelings over this thread, not that you do, but I can see how it can be frustrating trying to help someone when you can locate the same material quickly. If anything, maybe this can bring laminate back into play as a viable substrate for those of us in the north east that are finding it hard to get Sintra, Celtric, Do-able or any of the other substrates other people are using. I do have a possible lead on some 1/8th inch plexi down in PA that I may pick up when I go there next month. Like I said though that doesn't help others in this area so laminate may be a solution up in this area.
post #32 of 2849
Although the metal would be great as a first surface mirror, the price of $600 pretty much removes it from consideration. You would be better off attaching aluminum mylar to a substrate. Mylar is around $40 a roll.

See Clarence's post for an alternative place to get the Wilsonart.

Ericglo
post #33 of 2849
I just did a comparison on the screen. The Designer White is closest to pure white like I originally stated. The regular "White" might be good for a CRT owner. It shifts blue a little and has a little gain, but don't quote me on gain with such a small sample.

Ericglo
post #34 of 2849
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ericglo View Post

Although the metal would be great as a first surface mirror, the price of $600 pretty much removes it from consideration. You would be better off attaching aluminum mylar to a substrate. Mylar is around $40 a roll.

See Clarence's post for an alternative place to get the Wilsonart.

Ericglo

I have the Saratoga HD checking prices on the Chrome and Natural Aluminum now and should hear back from them tomorrow.

I have been reading the laminate threads an this is looking like a great potential.
I ordered several samples based on the laminate threads and when they come in I will test them against my temporary Silver Screen setup. This will be an interesting comparison to me.

Yes, I know this has been done, but the laminate threads all seem to be dead or dormate and besides I want to get some testing of my own done.

Interestingly they have some colors that look very close to the Silver Screen and Universal Gray paints. Since these are perfectly smooth and matt finishes they look like they will make good test material.
post #35 of 2849
Thread Starter 
The samples I ordered are 3x5 sheets of the following:

White 1570-60
This is their standard white hopefully to use as a baseline.


Designer White D354-60
Some in the other threads have used this and liked it so it's worth testing for comparisons.


Frosty White 1573-60

The Grays

Fashion Gray D381-60
This is just one of the lighter grays


Dove Gray D92-60


Pewter D73-60

Decorative Metals

Chrome AK1102
The sales people say this looks just like a mirror... you know what this is going to be used for if they are right...

Everything except the chrome should be available in the Saratoga Lowes and Home Depot. HD hasn't given me prices, but for the regular solid colors Lowes quoted $84 for a 5x8 sheet, no special shipping or fees. The link Clarence provided is even cheaper, but there is also shipping, so it just about equals out. If however you are in an area where there are others that want to go in on an order, as Clarence pointed out you save 15% for 2 sheets or more.

I'm not necessarily looking for cheap DIY, more for a custom match for my projector. If nothing else it was commented on in other threads how smooth this is so it should make a flawless surface to work with for other applications. I'm thinking of a frame design where I can slide the sheets in and out which would add a lot of flexibility as far as future upgrades, but that is down the road after I get some of my own comparison's done. The screen is the foundation, the trim is the details, and a masking system if needed is the optional item.
post #36 of 2849
Thread Starter 
Ericglo and Clarence thanks for introducing me to laminate. It looks like there are some good possibilities with it. I really like the Dove Grey. Originally I wanted something thicker, but now that I think about it... why? Mfg screens aren't big bulky behemoths.
post #37 of 2849
I ordered a 5x10 sheet of Designer White just out of curiousity. It only took 2 days to arrive. Huge box... 60"x16"x16". I'll try to test it this weekend.
post #38 of 2849
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Clarence View Post

I ordered a 5x10 sheet of Designer White just out of curiousity. It only took 2 days to arrive. Huge box... 60"x16"x16". I'll try to test it this weekend.

I'll be ordering when I get back from PA in a couple weeks. You're doing the designer, I'll get either the Grey or Dove Grey since I need a contrast boost anyway. Should be fun and hopefully some good results for both of us
post #39 of 2849
This 5x10 sheet of Wilsonart Designer White makes a very nice screen surface.

Here's the shipping box in front of the 115" wide screen I've been using for a couple of years....



...it's simply drywall painted with Kilz2. I used Sherwin Williams Ultra White before that. And I've used BO cloth, parkland plastic, white Formica, 4x8 melamine, pull down screens, and Video Spectra screen material. Plus an untold number of painted mirror and rear projection screen tests.

I've been tempted to buy a $750-$1000 permawall screen for the past couple of years. It's actually not the cost that's holding me back, it's the potential for damage from my young sons and the neighborhood kids... there are several kids in our HT daily. They're usually well-behaved, but the young, grubby hands always go straight for the screen (as can now be proven by the current Kilz2 surface). The rest of our HT is durable and kid-friendly so a durable screen is essential.

I had a 4x8 panel of melamine MDF before. And it made a great, durable $25 screen. But 48" wasn't high enough for my preferred screen size.

My current projected image is 65"x116". I recently started re-assessing screen options because with the lights on and from very close-up at just the right angle, I can notice the drywall seam from using 8' sheets of drywall on a 14' screen wall.

This wilsonart is 61" high. So I can easily adjust to 61" x 108".

The wilsonart sheet unrolled nice and flat after I cut the 3 straps that kept it rolled in the shipping box.

I simply propped it up against the wall and tucked it behind my speaker columns. It held itself up pretty nicely... when I mount it, it'll be a couple of feet higher, but with the bottom edge on the floor, this left a nice strip along the top so we can see a comparison against my previous screen.

These are 1080i from a Motorola 6412 HD cable DVR deinterlaced to 1080p with a Lumagen HDP scaler. Canon S45 digital camera on tripod. No flash. Auto settings. Resized to 640 pixels.

In this screenshot, I stood by the screen to point at the seam. The image above my finger is the Kilz2 screen. The lower part of the image is the new Wilsonart sheet of laminate...



I tested from the side to check the viewing cone. Interestingly, it dropped off less than the Kilz2...













Very nice surface... affordable, zero spraypainting tools or talent required, durable, ideal texture, nice gain, true colors, and great contrast. I don't see any indication of glare or hotspotting.

These preliminary tests have proven that this surface is worth permanently adhering and trimming to my wall... I'm going to use black velvet masking adjustable between 16:9 and 2.35 aspect ratios.
post #40 of 2849
That is a great post, Clarence. It looks like the Wilsonart is much better than the Kilz. It is to bad that you can't get large samples. I would love to see the regular White compared to the Designer. Also, you may want to do a curved screen. With the Wilsonart, it should be easy to give it a 3-4 inch horizontal curve to help uniformity. You may want to give Terry a ring about this. It should be easy enough to experiment with by putting some 2 by 4s up and laying the laminate over them.

Ericglo
post #41 of 2849
Thread Starter 
Very impressive Clarence. Look at those blacks too! You definitely have some nice equipment to play with.

This really ups the ante... no fuss no muss AND in larger than 4x8 size. Plus I see LOTS of that 'pop' people are always talking about.

I won't be able to test the Dove Grey and plain Grey until sometime next month. Trust me I would love to test it sooner but I have to travel to NJ and PA for work so I won't be able to play for a few weeks.

Clarence you know what this means don't you? We're going to get stoned to death by the paint people! Yes it's more expensive than Parkland and some of the other substrates out there but this is looking like an excellent one step with an ultra smooth surface. Just think... a person can go out and buy their trim wood and material while they wait for the laminate to arrive, and it sounded like it shipped pretty fast didn't it? Once the laminate arrives they literally can put it up and frame it all on a Saturday afternoon, and be watching movies that night! Painted screens can be phenomenal too but the time it takes to wait between coats there is no way a painted screen can be an afternoon project and used that night.

Someone with a decent to high cr DLP or LCD projector needs to try this and see how it works with those kind of projectors.


Ericglo and Clarence thanks again for introducing me to this....

How much was your Sony G90 if you don't mind me asking? And is it ceiling mounted, and how far from the screen?
post #42 of 2849
Interesting thread.
I used a Doable 1/4 inch (more like 5/16ths) 49"X97" 3 years ago and still love the image. It's not much bigger than the standard 4X8 sheets but the 49" height fit our HT just right. The surface is less reflective than melamine and can serve as a projection surface. I did paint ours though.
Bought it at Home Depot in the Northwest.
post #43 of 2849
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cyrano View Post

Interesting thread.
I used a Doable 1/4 inch (more like 5/16ths) 49"X97" 3 years ago and still love the image. It's not much bigger than the standard 4X8 sheets but the 49" height fit our HT just right. The surface is less reflective than melamine and can serve as a projection surface. I did paint ours though.
Bought it at Home Depot in the Northwest.

I have been able to find substrates in the 4x8 range even in my area, the problem I was running into was finding something to make a 54x96 screen out of. The Wilsonart comes in sizes big enough to make that screen, in fact you could make a 60"x107" monster screen if you wanted, but I don't have the room for something that big. Clarence is reporting it took two days to ship, so you could order it Monday, get it Wednesday, and have it up by the weekend! How perfect is that
post #44 of 2849
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ericglo View Post

...you may want to do a curved screen. With the Wilsonart, it should be easy to give it a 3-4 inch horizontal curve to help uniformity.

I was thinking about the potential for a single-axis curve as I was bending the sides to place it behind my speaker columns.

However, I don't think the gain is high enough to have problems with uniformity. I'll take a picture of an all-white screen and see if I can detect or measure any drop off at the edges.

I briefly considered a torus screen, but after seeing one, I was thrown off by the visible curve and the echo acoustics. Plus, the proper material would be expensive and vulnerable to damage by kids.

Quote:
Originally Posted by wbassett View Post

How much was your Sony G90 if you don't mind me asking? And is it ceiling mounted, and how far from the screen?

My throw distance is 13'.

Pricing a G90 is like pricing a Porsche 911... what year? what condition? how well was it maintained? was it serviced by a professional? was it driven hard? It helps to know what to look for... plus a lot of patience and a little luck in finding a good one at a great price, ideally nearby.

Let's just say that I wouldn't trade my G90 for any of the digital projectors I've seen... and that includes the $20K+ Sony Qualia and a $10K Sony Ruby. The good news is that the G90 has become more affordable... a couple of years ago you'd be doing good to find one for $10K-$12K. I got extremely lucky finding my G90 locally at a very envious price. Currently they quickly fetch $6K-$8K. But other 9" CRTs are usually $2500-$5000. And impressive 8" CRTs can be found for <$1000.

If you haven't seen a G90 or any other well-setup CRT, you don't know what you're missing. The oft-touted disadvantage of their size, setup complexity, and weight are greatly offset by their picture quality, durability, and cost effectiveness. Even a $750 CRT easily handles 720p and 1080i... with no LCD screen door effect, no DLP rainbows, and no worries about trying to guess when your continually dimming digital lamp is going to blow... tubes last 10,000+ hours... I've got 10-year-old CRT projectors with 26,000 hours that will still spank new $3500 dPJs.

However, I also have a JVC D-ILA G15 (1365x1024 pixels, 1500 lumens) (link) that I use for outdoor movies... it's a lot easier to setup a 10 lb digital projector outside for a night instead of a 150+ pound CRT (my G90 weighs 242 lbs). But any floor joist that's capable of holding a 200 lb man or a refrigerator is capable of supporting a ceiling-mounted CRT.

But "CRT vs digital" discussions are just as contentious as trying to determine which DIY screen technique is better. CRTs enthusiasts are very enthusiastic and very fanatical. But I fully support the continuous improvements in the digital projector market... in 3-5 more years they might finally get close enough to replace my G90.

CRTs and dPJs are very different. Kineto_hound's very enthusiastic post about using wilsonart gave me the incentive to order a sheet, but he was using a CRT projector, too. So I won't claim this will be perfect for everyone, but I will give it my not-so-humble thumbs up for any CRT owner seeking an affordable, durable 8'+ screen with great PQ performance. After I get the Wilsonart mounted and masked, I'll try some digital projector test shots with the D-ILA.
post #45 of 2849
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Clarence View Post

My throw distance is 13'.

Pricing a G90 is like pricing a Porsche 911... what year? what condition? how well was it maintained? was it serviced by a professional? was it driven hard? It helps to know what to look for... plus a lot of patience and a little luck in finding a good one at a great price, ideally nearby.

Let's just say that I wouldn't trade my G90 for any of the digital projectors I've seen... and that includes the $20K+ Sony Qualia and a $10K Sony Ruby. The good news is that the G90 has become more affordable... a couple of years ago you'd be doing good to find one for $10K-$12K. I got extremely lucky finding my G90 locally at a very envious price. Currently they quickly fetch $6K-$8K. But other 9" CRTs are usually $2500-$5000. And impressive 8" CRTs can be found for <$1000.

If you haven't seen a G90 or any other well-setup CRT, you don't know what you're missing. The oft-touted disadvantage of their size, setup complexity, and weight are greatly offset by their picture quality, durability, and cost effectiveness. Even a $750 CRT easily handles 720p and 1080i... with no LCD screen door effect, no DLP rainbows, and no worries about trying to guess when your continually dimming digital lamp is going to blow... tubes last 10,000+ hours... I've got 10-year-old CRT projectors with 26,000 hours that will still spank new $3500 dPJs.

However, I also have a JVC D-ILA G15 (1365x1024 pixels, 1500 lumens) (link) that I use for outdoor movies... it's a lot easier to setup a 10 lb digital projector outside for a night instead of a 150+ pound CRT (my G90 weighs 242 lbs). But any floor joist that's capable of holding a 200 lb man or a refrigerator is capable of supporting a ceiling-mounted CRT.

But "CRT vs digital" discussions are just as contentious as trying to determine which DIY screen technique is better. CRTs enthusiasts are very enthusiastic and very fanatical. But I fully support the continuous improvements in the digital projector market... in 3-5 more years they might finally get close enough to replace my G90.

CRTs and dPJs are very different. Kineto_hound's very enthusiastic post about using wilsonart gave me the incentive to order a sheet, but he was using a CRT projector, too. So I won't claim this will be perfect for everyone, but I will give it my not-so-humble thumbs up for any CRT owner seeking an affordable, durable 8'+ screen with great PQ performance. After I get the Wilsonart mounted and masked, I'll try some digital projector test shots with the D-ILA.

My first projector was a Zenith 840 Pro I think I bought around 1992. It was nowhere near the specs of yours but at the time it was a pretty good projector and popular in clubs and sports bars. Even as old as this thing was, from what I remember the picture was surprisingly good. I'm trying to talk my wife into a home theater addition to the house but she's saying no way. If I could build a dedicated home theater room I'd have to put some thought into a crt projector or digital one.
post #46 of 2849
Quote:
Originally Posted by Clarence View Post

I was thinking about the potential for a single-axis curve as I was bending the sides to place it behind my speaker columns.

However, I don't think the gain is high enough to have problems with uniformity. I'll take a picture of an all-white screen and see if I can detect or measure any drop off at the edges.

I briefly considered a torus screen, but after seeing one, I was thrown off by the visible curve and the echo acoustics. Plus, the proper material would be expensive and vulnerable to damage by kids.

I believe the usual dropoff on a CRT from center to edge is like 30% to 50%. It is just not as noticeable, because it is harder to detect changes in brightness. VDC uses straight white on their Torus screens. If you can do an easy experiment to see if you like it, then it might be worth a try. If not, then I wouldn't bother. For me, I can see how much better the uniformity is on a Torus than flat screen. For others, it isn't that big of a deal. For digital guys, a horizontal curve may be plenty with the better uniformity that digitals have.

On your G90, I think you are fine for a long time. If digitals are as good or better in a couple of years, then it may be time to consider a switch. The problem is what would you gain. They would have to surpass the image that you are getting by a wide margin to consider spending the money for a change. Think about it. You already have it mounted and it does 1080p. The only thing you will need to replace is a green and/or maybe a blue tube(s). The only fly in the ointment is the stupid copy protection crap.

Ericglo
post #47 of 2849
I currently have a BOC screen that I'd like to replace. I'd like to keep the existing frame I'm using however and just attach this Wilsonart to the back. How easy will it be to keep it flat and tight or do I need to consider another route??? I'd like to just take off the BOC and screw the Wilsonart to the back of the same frame.
post #48 of 2849
Any thoughts on this? I'd like to avoid having to attach it to anything.
post #49 of 2849
It would work with no problem... it lies perfectly flat on it's own... there is no way it can be "tight" or loose.

I have it tacked up on the wall with some small white finishing brads. The 10' length gave me about 3" on each side behind my speaker columns. I put a piece of duct tape on the corners and pre-drilled a couple of holes in each corner with the smallest drill bit I had and a scrap of 2x4 behind the panel. I figured the tape would help prevent chipping or splitting, plus keep the drill bit from slipping.

I tacked up one top corner with a brad. Then I went over to the other side, levelled it and tacked in another brad. Then I went back and put a small 3/4" flat-headed screw in each corner. The edge bows out slightly in the middle so I'll probably get some laminate adhesive at HD. Or just run a bead of liquid nails along the edges.

Anyways, for your screen, it'd probably work fine to use similar means to attach it to your existing frame... Liquid Nails along the edges, with 1/2" or 3/4" screws in predrilled holes every 6" or so.

I watched several movies on it this weekend... I haven't noticed any drawbacks to this screen... still the best surface I've seen.
post #50 of 2849
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ericglo View Post

Although the metal would be great as a first surface mirror, the price of $600 pretty much removes it from consideration. You would be better off attaching aluminum mylar to a substrate. Mylar is around $40 a roll.

See Clarence's post for an alternative place to get the Wilsonart.

Ericglo

... put a piece of mylar on a small piece of hardboard and sure does look like a mirror to me... and way cheaper too...

This is just going to be for experimenting. I'm 99.99% sure the Wilsonart is what I will be using.
post #51 of 2849
I have found the Wilsonart material in the Atlanta area for $ 50.00 for a 5x12 sheet in designer white. You do need a business license to buy. Its at Wilsonart in Decatur Ga. I don't know if they will ship. I will picking up mine this week and I will ask. Can anyone tell me how the Panny 900 would look on this?
post #52 of 2849
Thread Starter 
Is it a Panasonic PT-AE900U Projector ? If so that has an incredible contrast ratio (5500:1)

What are you using right now for a screen and how do the blacks look? I'd say this should work just fine for you. Clarence said when he gets some time he will do some testing with one of his digital projectors. The beauty of this is you can always paint it down the road if for some reason you aren't totally happy with it. It looks like a great substrate in the over 4x8 catagory... you can use it as is, or use it for a very flat and smooth surface for your favorite paint mix...

I am going to order a full size sheet probably tomorrow, but I have to do some traveling for work so I won't be able to get any testing done for a week or two. I'm going with a gray sheet only because I need the contrast boost. I'll probably end up with several sheets though, maybe not 5x8 but bigger than the samples so I can do some comparisons.
post #53 of 2849
Quote:
Originally Posted by wbassett View Post

Is it a Panasonic PT-AE900U Projector ? If so that has an incredible contrast ratio (5500:1)

What are you using right now for a screen and how do the blacks look? I'd say this should work just fine for you. Clarence said when he gets some time he will do some testing with one of his digital projectors. The beauty of this is you can always paint it down the road if for some reason you aren't totally happy with it. It looks like a great substrate in the over 4x8 catagory... you can use it as is, or use it for a very flat and smooth surface for your favorite paint mix...

I am going to order a full size sheet probably tomorrow, but I have to do some traveling for work so I won't be able to get any testing done for a week or two. I'm going with a gray sheet only because I need the contrast boost. I'll probably end up with several sheets though, maybe not 5x8 but bigger than the samples so I can do some comparisons.

I'm currently in the process of builder my theater. So I have no screen at this time. I made the decision to paint a screen and then read about this material.
I have total light control. Like you said, if I don't like it I can paint it. BTW, it is a Panny AE900U.

Thanks,
post #54 of 2849
Thread Starter 
wbart4 I sincerly think with a contrast ratio like what you have along with total light control you really don't need a gray screen and this will work fine.
post #55 of 2849
Looks like I'll be going the Wilsonart Designer White direction.
Luckily I have a Wilsonart Distributor right here in Dallas.....and they sell to the public.

Thanks to all of you for your time and input. Im finding all the knowledge contained in these Forums to be very valuable. !!!

Im ordering 2 sheets of the Designer white.......one for the theater room....and the other for a portable Pool Party screen.

**EDIT**.....by popular request, the contact info for Wilsonart Dallas

The Wilsonart Distribution Center is located on I-30 just past loop 12.

Take the Cockrell Hill exit, go across the bridge (north), and take a right at the stop sign (only direction you can go). Its the first building on the left.

Wilsonart Distribution Center
4051 La Reunion, ste 140
Dallas Texas 75212
(214) 634-2310

Map: http://maps.yahoo.com/maps_result?ad...w=1&name=&qty=

Total for the 5x10 cost me $107.17. Designer White #D354.
post #56 of 2849
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by BKM72 View Post

Looks like I'll be going the Wilsonart Designer White direction.
Luckily I have a Wilsonart Distributor right here in Dallas.....and they sell to the public.

Thanks to all of you for your time and input. Im finding all the knowledge contained in these Forums to be very valuable. !!!

Im ordering 2 sheets of the Designer white.......one for the theater room....and the other for a portable Pool Party screen.

The only negative thing I can think of BKM is it's white, so it won't be very ambient light friendly, but there really are no white screens, painted, mfg or substrate that like ambient light...

Big screen and a pool... now THAT sounds like fun!
post #57 of 2849
Quote:
Originally Posted by wbassett View Post

The only negative thing I can think of BKM is it's white, so it won't be very ambient light friendly, but there really are no white screens, painted, mfg or substrate that like ambient light...

Big screen and a pool... now THAT sounds like fun!


No worries friend. Not much ambient light at the pool. I used a sheet the other night and people were impressed......just wait 'til I bring a dedicated, framed screen.

"Are you ready for some Football?" .....Pizza, Hot wings......now all I have to work out is the Margarita Machine......
post #58 of 2849
Quote:
Originally Posted by wbart4 View Post

I have found the Wilsonart material in the Atlanta area for $ 50.00 for a 5x12 sheet in designer white. You do need a business license to buy. Its at Wilsonart in Decatur Ga. I don't know if they will ship. I will picking up mine this week and I will ask. Can anyone tell me how the Panny 900 would look on this?


Have you tried Meyerdeco? Used to be Meyer Laminates - they are cabinet mfg suppliers that sell to the public. I used to rep High Pressure Laminates (Nevamar, Pionite, Wilsonart) they were one of my customers.
meyer

It looks as though the corporate offerings are Formice but if you contact the local branch they likely will handle several different brands. Also there are cross reference charts for all the laminate mfgs, the industry is so competitive that all make sure they have an "exact" match for each other's commodity colors (white, grey, etc). I will try to lookup the designer white match ( in nevamar I belive it's precision white)


FWIW: Studio Gray from Nevamar is supposed to be neutral gray, I am currently calling some old contacts to find out about the other brand's neutrals (Wilsonart, Pionite, Formica)
post #59 of 2849
Quote:
Originally Posted by wbassett View Post

Is it a Panasonic PT-AE900U Projector ? If so that has an incredible contrast ratio (5500:1)

What are you using right now for a screen and how do the blacks look? I'd say this should work just fine for you. Clarence said when he gets some time he will do some testing with one of his digital projectors. The beauty of this is you can always paint it down the road if for some reason you aren't totally happy with it. It looks like a great substrate in the over 4x8 catagory... you can use it as is, or use it for a very flat and smooth surface for your favorite paint mix...

I am going to order a full size sheet probably tomorrow, but I have to do some traveling for work so I won't be able to get any testing done for a week or two. I'm going with a gray sheet only because I need the contrast boost. I'll probably end up with several sheets though, maybe not 5x8 but bigger than the samples so I can do some comparisons.

If you can find a local distributor they often have "throw away" sheets. When large orders (palletized) are shipped there are usually "cover" sheets to protect the surfaces of the outermost product.
Some distributor's also sell "cut" sheets (2x4, 3x5, etc)

The best way to find out is to call some of your local cabinet mfgs and ask them where they buy their lamiate. Many will be happy to order it for you.

Also check into vertical grade "VG" as it is much thinner and cost less but still has the same characteristics for our application. Only difference is VG is not rated as high for impact strength.
post #60 of 2849
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by davedeal View Post

Have you tried meyerdeco? Used to be Meyer Lamiates - they are cabinet mfg suppliers that sell to the public. I used to rep High Pressure Laminates (Nevamar, Pionite, Wilsonart) they were one of my customers.
meyer

Looks like they are selling Formica brand laminate, which will also work. The price is virtually the same at my local Home Depot for Wilsonart and Formica (a penny or two difference per square foot)

I'm not sure what color they have that directly corresponds to Designer White. I got some of their samples and the ones they had in the store were all a shade off from the Wilsonart Designer White.

I'm sure they have something that will work, so it comes down to a matter of availability and preference. Since Home Depot and Lowes can both order either of them it doesn't really matter I guess, unless you want to go with a specific color like Designer.

Here's a couple things I found out as far as ordering online or through Home Depot.

Home Depot only gets shipments on Thursdays. They said I could place my order as late as Tuesday by noon and it would get there on Thursday. That matches Clarence's experience with 2 day delivery that he got ordering online. Pros and cons of this...

Pros: No shipping charges. Granted Home Depot adds $15 to the price, but that is already included when they quote you how much the sheet will be. They charge this no matter if it's Wilsonart or Formica so there's no difference in price there either. So for example if I was to order through one one of the online companies, a 5x8 sheet is $77.09 verses $83 at Home Depot. The difference is the online store charges $45.67 for shipping, which brings the cost to $122.76. Granted their shipping charges look fair based on the package size so I'm not saying they are ripping you off, just in this case the big store gets deals on shipping because they buy in bulk from these companies. (That's why HD in my area wouldn't order Parkland) So for me, Home Depot actually turned out cheaper. Formica was just about the same price, but they said it would take longer to ship. Shipping may also be less depending on where you live, so at least check it out. They have a shipping calculator too.

Cons: If you miss Home Depots Tuesday deadline for placing an order, you can still order it but you won't get it until the following week. So if you absolutely have to have it that week and you missed the deadline you're out of luck unless you order it online.

My recommendation would be to buy your wood for the trim, hardware, velvet or velveteen over the weekend, then place your order by Monday (or in the store while you're buying your wood). When it comes in Thursday pick it up and you already have all your trim materials so you could start putting it up that night if you wanted.

If you can pick a sheet up at a local distributor you can save even more, probably that $15 HD charges, maybe even more. In my area though unless you own a business the local distributors won't sell to you.
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