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DIY Curved Screen w/Motorized Masking

post #1 of 43
Thread Starter 
OK, my fellow 2.35 forum aficionados-

Awhile back I decided to go Cinemascope, and was inspired by Vern Dias's DIY 2.35 curved screen. I added my own twist by incorporating a motorized masking system. For my room, I settled for a 112-inch wide screen.

Essentially, building the screen was pretty straightforward. I constructed a frame consisting of a couple of 2x2's, MDF, and brackets of assorted lengths. The "rise" is about 6 inches from the center.

The 2.5 inch wide MDF is very bendable, and became the top and bottom pieces to which the duck canvas was stapled to.

After the frame was built, it was time to staple the duck canvas to the frame. Starting at the top, I was able to get the canvas secured to the MDF stapling every 3 inches or so. Once that was done, I then stapled the bottom side.

It is recommended that the sides NOT be stapled, otherwise the fabric will tend to flatten out and not follow the curve.

I then painted the screen with Behr Bright White latex paint. This helped tighten the screen by shrinking the fabric somewhat. This took 3 coats to acheive adequate coverage and uniformity.

Here are some pics of the construction.

Don
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post #2 of 43
Thread Starter 
Here's some pics of the DIY curved screen with the masking system installed. I positioned the masks to various aspect ratios. The masks ride about 1/4 inch from the screen.

Don
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post #3 of 43
Your curved HT screen and masking looks great. Would you mind letting me know where you got or how you constructed your curved masking kit/screen/parts etc. I've been wondering how I would curve the masking curtains and suspend them. I haven't started my DIY curved screen but am ready to.
Thanks,
post #4 of 43
Jim,
You're gonna laugh when you find out.





He's the manufacturer. He sells them and they are a GREAT deal.

Scott
post #5 of 43
Quote:
Originally Posted by scottyb View Post

Jim,
You're gonna laugh when you find out.





He's the manufacturer. He sells them and they are a GREAT deal.

Scott

There was another guy here a couple of years back that also did a nice motorized masking system.

Bob Trinanes is his name. Here is the archived thread --> Pics of my 4-way motorized masking system

Along the thread there is a few pdf's with schematics and masking system layout.
post #6 of 43
camarillo_cinema, scottyb says you manufacture and sale your masking system/screen. Can you give me an idea of the cost per 2.35.1 horizontal inch or foot? Can you sale the masking system separately from the screen? If it is motorized, can it be remotely controlled by the projector trigger? Thanks again-
post #7 of 43
Quote:
Originally Posted by James A. McGahee View Post

camarillo_cinema, scottyb says you manufacture and sale your masking system/screen. Can you give me an idea of the cost per 2.35.1 horizontal inch or foot? Can you sale the masking system separately from the screen? If it is motorized, can it be remotely controlled by the projector trigger? Thanks again-


Go to www.htiq.com for some info.
post #8 of 43
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by James A. McGahee View Post

Your curved HT screen and masking looks great. Would you mind letting me know where you got or how you constructed your curved masking kit/screen/parts etc. I've been wondering how I would curve the masking curtains and suspend them. I haven't started my DIY curved screen but am ready to.
Thanks,

James-
I can come up with a suitable parts list for the screen. All materials for the screen were procurred from Home Depot, except for the duck canvas, which can be bought from any fabric store. Keep in mind that if you use duck canvas, it will not be AT. For this, you will have to use another material, such as SmX. Instead of stapling, you could use another piece of MDF in front with the material wedged between the two, held in place with wood screws. Paint or cover the outside piece with some velvet to produce a nice looking frame.

The masking material is rolled on rollers, and the track can be easily formed to follow the curvature of your screen. The masking material is about 1/4 the width of the screen on each side to mask to 1.33.

Don
post #9 of 43
Don,
Do you sell just the masking part of the system?
I already have curtains but they are only for looks on the front wall, so I could hide the masking mechanisms behind them

Scott
post #10 of 43
Nice Job Don,

And according to your website, not to bad on price either.

I like the idea of rollers for the material, unlike using curtains, this means that you don't need alot of space on the sides of the screen, for excess fabric (when the masking is fully open.) Right? This should also help out people who have their left and right speakers right next to the left and right of their screens.

I do have a question though, having a curved screen. The track is bent to follow the curve of the screen, so that masking material stays close to the screen, ON THE END. But are you able to get all of the masking material/panels to follow the curve of the screen. To make myself clearer, does the entire mask follow the curvature of the screen, or is the middle section of the masking area basically stretched between the to endpoints, and as a result it protrudes from the curvature of the screen?
post #11 of 43
And another question. Those of us with commercial curved screens (Stewart in particular) have frames that work the opposite of what you have built. The screen material is snapped onto the BACK of the frame. So the Frame protrudes out in front of the screen (in my case by about 1 and 1/2 inches.) Can your system accommodate this arrangement and still provide a clean edge, that is close to the screen material, for masking?

Thanks
post #12 of 43
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by lawdawg View Post

The track is bent to follow the curve of the screen, so that masking material stays close to the screen, ON THE END. But are you able to get all of the masking material/panels to follow the curve of the screen. To make myself clearer, does the entire mask follow the curvature of the screen, or is the middle section of the masking area basically stretched between the to endpoints, and as a result it protrudes from the curvature of the screen?

lawdawg-

The answer is "YES". The fabric does follow the curve. Keep in mind that in most cases, the masks will not be more than about 28 inches wide to mask to 1:33. With that said, the curve is really not that much. I noticed this on my own screen. When looking from the center of the screen out, the curve is quite pronounced. But we're not masking the whole screen.

To answer your second question, yes, I do realize that commercial screens have a protruding frame. Typically, the screen will be set back from the front edge of the frame 1/2 to 1 inch. Not much I can do about that, unless you want to get rid of your frame. But, the tracks can be positioned so that the masks ride just in front of the frame. I have not experienced "shadowboxing" with that distance.

I went with rollers simply because of the stacking problem associated with curtains. I decided to have curtains anyway, so I curved the curtain track so that they stack on the adjacent walls. Nice "WOW" factor.

best-
Don
post #13 of 43
Thread Starter 
I just wanted to correct myself on one point. The load bar follows the curve, since it has to follow the curve of the track.

However, that's not to say that the fabric follows the curve. That I think would be hard to do, unless you have an AT screen and a vacuum on the other side sucking on the material.

But, if you think about it, it's not really necessary for it to do so, since most importantly, the leading edge of the mask will be closest to the screen. What's behind the mask is immaterial.

Don
post #14 of 43
Quote:
Originally Posted by camarillo_cinema View Post

James-
I can come up with a suitable parts list for the screen. All materials for the screen were procurred from Home Depot, except for the duck canvas, which can be bought from any fabric store....
Don

camarillo_cinema, have you been able to put together a suitable parts list for the screen or what would it cost me if you made me a 14' wide 2:35 curved screen? Can the masking be added later?
Thanks,
James
post #15 of 43
Thread Starter 
James-
Yes, I am in the process of doing so as we speak. I just picked up the 1 inch aluminum channel that was "curved" at the machine shop. This will constitute part of the frame for the screen. This is a 9 ft wide screen, and I chose a radius of 20.5 feet, which actually may be a little extreme. But, these parameters can be selected to be whatever you want.

I intend to have a velcro attachment scheme for the screen material, which will be the Pfifer 4500 AT.

I will be adding a motorized masking system, and will post pics when ready, which will be before Santa arrives.

Yes, you can add masking later. I'm not allowed to quote prices here, but I can put together a price for you via PM.

Don
post #16 of 43
Looking forward to seeing it. I hope it is something I can handle and afford.
Thanks-
post #17 of 43
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by James A. McGahee View Post

I hope it is something I can handle and afford.
Thanks-

It will be very affordable.

Don
post #18 of 43
Thread Starter 
OK - I was waaaay off on my curve radius, according to Ausie Bob's curve calculator xls program (BTW, thanks Bob!). The radius for my screen, given the throw and height, should have been about 40 ft - not 20.

I did decide to go to a grommet and bungee ball scheme to mount the screen material. My frame will be made from 1-inch schedule 40 Aluminum pipe. However, I will first do a flat screen design first. A curved screen is very do-able, it's just that I didn't want to wait a week for the machine shop to bend the pipe for my 40-ft. radius. Besides that, the construction for both is virtually the same.

I prototyped the frame last weekend with PVC and mounted the screen material. So far, so good. I will be building the real thing this week, then adding the masking system.

Don
post #19 of 43
Looking forward. I'm excited there may be a screen, even a curved one, in my future. Hang in there and Thanks-
post #20 of 43
Thread Starter 
James-
The curve is based on the height and throw. For a 14 ft wide screen, your heigth will be 5.957 ft. What is your throw?

Don
post #21 of 43
From back wall to front wall is 18'6". The projector (IN76) lens is 18" from back wall (includes 4.5" clearance behind projector for cable clearance). The anamorphic lens is right up against the projector and adds 9" in front of the projector.
Some concerns:
Watching HD Sat. (CSI: Miami) with the anamorphic lens the image is approximately 14'2" wide and 64.5" high at center to 67.5" on each side due to pin cushion effect. I really like the size and feel of the 14'2" wall to wall image. With the Sat. box on 16:9/Native/Pillar Box and the projector on Native or 16/9 the image needs to be stretched a little top to bottom. Switching the projector to Letterbox seems to fix that problem but information such as ball game score bars at the top and closed caption at the bottom are cut off. I don't know if a scalar would be a solution or if I could ever afford one. There is about 8" of space above and below the image if needed for scalar adjustments or to squeeze in a border for masking. The only possibility with width is reducing the width as the image, as mentioned above, is wall to wall. I have not spent a lot of time but at one point I did a short search including talking to someone (I believe Jason or David) at AVS and had no luck finding a screen material that had the width (top to bottom image) without having a hem showing. I don't need AT material.
Thanks-
post #22 of 43
Thread Starter 
James-

The Pfifer 4400 is non-AT material, and comes in 98 inch widths, more than enough to cover the height of your screen and then some.

I will have to calculate the amount of curve for your screen.

I am in the process of building a screen right now. I will show pics when ready.

Don
post #23 of 43
Don,

Can you repost your post from today, it's gone.

Scott
post #24 of 43
Thread Starter 
Here's a nice example of a CIH screen with masking. The screen frame is wood and curved. The screen material is Pfifer 4500 AT. Not shown is the Austrian curtain which will be installed shortly. All theater design, installation and finish work was done by the homeowner. Nice work, Bob!
LL
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LL
post #25 of 43
OK I need to call you again and order masking. That looks great!!
post #26 of 43
Hey Don,

How's that separate motor & controller kit coming along? Haven't heard from you in a while.
post #27 of 43
Thread Starter 
OK Andy-
Here's a pic of the drive motor for the rollers. The motor actually fits inside the roller, except the last inch for the mounting bracket. You can see the encoder mounted on the drive shaft. Cheap, cheerful, and Oh so accurate.

The firmware is going thru an upgrade, and when it's "golden", the controller will be ready along with the motors.

Don
LL
post #28 of 43
Very cool, Don. Looking forward to the final result!
post #29 of 43
Hi Don, Thanks for the photo of your motor. How does it grip the inside of the roller tube ? Best of luck on your projects.
post #30 of 43
Thread Starter 
Hi Andy-
The drive interfaces with the tube with a speed screw.
Don
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