The 'El Unico' Theatre Build - Page 13 - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #361 of 422 Old 04-27-2019, 07:15 PM - Thread Starter
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A real quick update because I just couldn’t wait. I’ve finished up all of the paint with the exception of a few small touch ups!

I’m amazed at how the projector cubby all but disappears with the paint on.


Not a lot to show otherwise, just finishing of the paint on the soffit crown. I was super nervous painting above my head with the carpet in so I draped the entire floor in plastic. Once the painting was complete I pulled up the plastic and my heart sunk when I saw this.



What does every man do in a situation like this? Scream for his wife. After a quick assessment of the situation my wife launched into action. She disappeared up the stairs like a flash of light returning with a bucket of something magical and started scrubbing. Alas, the stain was not budging. I took a step back to collect my thoughts and began to accept my fate. As I stared at the situation the stain moved slightly. Was that just my imagination? It had to be, stains don’t move. I reassessed and burst out laughing. Turns out it wasn’t a stain at all. The culprit - the cables still dropping from me painting the projector cubby, casting a shadow on the floor.



Stain gone.



Whew and how embarrassing! And I just could not wait to see what all the hard work has led to. Lots to do yet; refinish the stage step, fabric frames on the pillars and screen surround, the screen, HVAV vent covers, star field and of course the hours of cable termination but man, we’re close!

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post #362 of 422 Old 04-28-2019, 11:18 AM
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post #363 of 422 Old 04-28-2019, 03:59 PM - Thread Starter
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I’m putting together what should be my final construction order. Does anyone know a good source for custom vent covers? I have 4 that are an odd size.

Thanks.
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post #364 of 422 Old 04-28-2019, 08:00 PM
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I’m putting together what should be my final construction order. Does anyone know a good source for custom vent covers? I have 4 that are an odd size.

Thanks.
I thought I remember Big posting about a place to get some. You may want to PM him.

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post #365 of 422 Old 04-28-2019, 08:57 PM - Thread Starter
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Big to the rescue

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post #366 of 422 Old 05-03-2019, 05:19 AM - Thread Starter
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I have a big weekend coming up - getting to work on the screen. In preparation I’ve been trying to track down velvet. I tried online but nobody seems to shop to poor old Canada.

For those local to the Edmonton area, is $40/meter pretty average? I’d need just over 3 meters to cover the span of the frame without seems.
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post #367 of 422 Old 05-03-2019, 06:11 AM
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I have a big weekend coming up - getting to work on the screen. In preparation I’ve been trying to track down velvet. I tried online but nobody seems to shop to poor old Canada.

For those local to the Edmonton area, is $40/meter pretty average? I’d need just over 3 meters to cover the span of the frame without seems.
You bought your screen material from Seymour, right? Call them, I'll bet they'll sell you some of their Fidelio.
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post #368 of 422 Old 05-03-2019, 06:17 AM - Thread Starter
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I went down that road initially, it’s $40/yd plus shipping. The local fabric store has a nice , deep, flat velvet for the same price. I was a little thrown back by that. I’d need about $140 worth with half of that being waste.
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post #369 of 422 Old 05-03-2019, 07:17 AM
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I went down that road initially, it’s $40/yd plus shipping. The local fabric store has a nice , deep, flat velvet for the same price. I was a little thrown back by that. I’d need about $140 worth with half of that being waste.
Back in the day a lot of people recommended syfabrics for their velvets - if you search around you should find a link to the one generally recommended. I think it's like triple black or something. I think it's a bit more affordable. Not sure how fast they are to ship or any of that.
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post #370 of 422 Old 05-03-2019, 11:50 AM - Thread Starter
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Thanks for that, I do recall a lot chatter about that.

Has anyone heard of velveteen? What’s the difference?
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post #371 of 422 Old 05-04-2019, 08:06 AM - Thread Starter
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So I have my father lined up to help with the screen today. I’m going to bite the bullet and pick the velvet up locally. $52/yd. ouch!

I’ve never shopped velvet before. The stuff I’m looking at is super black but I notice a sheen to it depending on the angle you’re looking at it. Is this normal?
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post #372 of 422 Old 05-05-2019, 07:33 AM - Thread Starter
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Well I took the plunge and bought the fabric locally. Another big hit but worth the progress I suppose.

The screen:
The original plan was to simplify using 4x1 inch finger jointed pine. I rummaged through the hardwood thinking it would be stronger but it was pretty twisted. The risk was the only pine I could find was an actual dimension of 3/4”. Attaching the screen was going to be staples along the backside of the frame.

When I got the material home I started second thinking the approach. My big concern was retentioning if ever required. Removing the screen would be a royal pain. So off to HD to pickup materials need to attach the screen material with track and spline.

The first step once the frame was cut to dimensions was to create the tenon for the track to sit. This was the first concern - the pine is 3/4” thick and the track is 5/8” thick. I wasn’t sure if there would be enough material left to provide the necessary support.

During my garage Reno I did a lot of downsizing to make better use of my small garage. I elected to sell my floor standing table saw and go with the battery operated Milwaukee contractor. Great little saw with amazing power but the downside is the size of the blade. It uses an 8.5” small kerf. I wasn’t sure if it could handle the extra mass of a dado stack so I elected to create the tenons with a router. It worked but took several passes with incremental depths to get where I needed. It took about an hour to cut them all.



I’ll be using angle brackets to attach and strengthen the mitres but added biscuits to help with alignment.


The only blade that I had handy was a little big but worked fine as the fabric will cover the overage.



Next step, install the spline track. We made the tenon as tight as possible so there really wasn’t a need to glue, I added some epoxy anyway for good measure.






And lastly the wrapping of the fabric. This went surprisingly well with two people. I sprayed the front side with 3M spray adhesive. With the fabric rolled up one of us rolling it out while the other aligned and attached.





We then flipped the board and spayed the back side after masking the track. This was a little tricky so as not to spray everything around it. Sliding a piece of cardboard underneath worked well just had to be certain to change the cardboard out with each spray.







The ends were a little tricky and difficult to explain. A little cutting of the excess and folding like a present did the trick using a couple of staples to keep things in place.









And that’s where I’m at. I’ve cut the slits in the ends of the fabric to reinsert the biscuits. The result isn’t as tidy as I had hoped. I had to remove a lot of material to keep it from bunching up in the biscuit joints. I’ve dry fit the joints and it feels okay. I’ll see how tight I can get things when I attach the L brackets on the backside.

One thing I completely overlooked was the bracing. I knew going with a wood frame would require center braces. What I didn’t account for was the screen material being attached on the backside of the frame. Because of this I won’t be able to place the bracing flush on the inside - that would put it on the front side of the actual screen. The plan now is to attach the screen then a 1/4” spacer only where the two braces will be, then attach the braces to the backside of the frame. Not ideal but it won’t be seen and I can’t think of another way of getting me there.

I definitely underestimated the time this would take. I thought I’d have the screen hung in a few hours, we’re 9 hours in to this point!
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post #373 of 422 Old 05-05-2019, 02:36 PM - Thread Starter
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The 'El Unico' Theatre Build

Hard at it today, well not really, all the hard work was done yesterday. Today was squaring the screen frame up and adding the angle brackets. The caution we took in building paid off, the mitres are very tight and I’m within 1/16” square; I’ll chalk that up to the slight variance in velvet thickness at the corners .













I will say I’m thrilled with the velvet, this stuff is extremely dark. It shows just how not black the carpet is.
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post #374 of 422 Old 05-05-2019, 07:07 PM - Thread Starter
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And couldn’t resist, our first showing ......

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post #375 of 422 Old 05-06-2019, 05:12 AM
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That is a really cool frame you built there! Did I miss when the screen itself is coming in?

I'd be VERY interested to see the final tally (hours and cost) when you're done.
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post #376 of 422 Old 05-06-2019, 06:45 AM
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I definitely underestimated the time this would take. I thought I’d have the screen hung in a few hours, we’re 9 hours in to this point!
Ahhh woodworking. Everything always takes about ten times as long as you think it will.

Great work on the frame - especially cutting the groove/dado for the spline track. That's a lot of work to do with a router. Turned out great. On another note I'm really digging the top of your router table. I need to build a new one and might have to steal a couple ideas from yours!
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post #377 of 422 Old 05-06-2019, 11:27 AM - Thread Starter
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That is a really cool frame you built there! Did I miss when the screen itself is coming in?



I'd be VERY interested to see the final tally (hours and cost) when you're done.


Appreciate it Doug. The screen was ordered from Seymour a few months ago, one of the many things equipment included, sitting in a shelf waiting. Tally so far, in CDN dollars:

Wood - $75
Brackets: $25
Spline: $100
Velvet: $200
Screen material: $475

I have about $30 left in miscellaneous remaining - need to figure out a way of bracing the center. I’m leaning towards 2 pieces of 1/2” aluminum channel.
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post #378 of 422 Old 05-06-2019, 11:35 AM - Thread Starter
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Ahhh woodworking. Everything always takes about ten times as long as you think it will.



Great work on the frame - especially cutting the groove/dado for the spline track. That's a lot of work to do with a router. Turned out great. On another note I'm really digging the top of your router table. I need to build a new one and might have to steal a couple ideas from yours!


Crazy right? I’m just starting to get serious with woodworking. Really glad I had my father here to help.

The benches are the first things I built. It’s awesome to have a nice work surface at the right height. I used the Paulk design, abbreviated to fit my garage. They’re on casters to tuck them under the stationary benches when not in use.

I’ll take some shots of the benches later tonight?
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post #379 of 422 Old 05-07-2019, 06:05 AM
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Appreciate it Doug. The screen was ordered from Seymour a few months ago, one of the many things equipment included, sitting in a shelf waiting. Tally so far, in CDN dollars:

Wood - $75
Brackets: $25
Spline: $100
Velvet: $200
Screen material: $475

I have about $30 left in miscellaneous remaining - need to figure out a way of bracing the center. I’m leaning towards 2 pieces of 1/2” aluminum channel.
Very cool, thanks!! How big is the screen at that price?
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post #380 of 422 Old 05-07-2019, 06:42 AM - Thread Starter
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It’s 150”. If I did it again (ain’t gonna happen!) I woods have eliminated the step on the stage and went with a single level platform. That would have saved 8” and allowed for a 160”.

One cost I forgot to add was the French cleats. I could have made them out of 1x material but decided to buy. They were $20x3.
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It’s 150”. If I did it again (ain’t gonna happen!) I woods have eliminated the step on the stage and went with a single level platform. That would have saved 8” and allowed for a 160”.

One cost I forgot to add was the French cleats. I could have made them out of 1x material but decided to buy. They were $20x3.
Very cool, I dig it. I looked, but can't see where you got the AT material from? Did you find that you were limited by the available widths in material, or by your decision of the size you wanted?

Just asking because I'd love to be able to consider DIY screens, but only if I can get 4k AT in the size I want. I'd like to keep it to a 14' 16:9, but IDK that DIY material comes that wide?
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post #382 of 422 Old 05-07-2019, 10:18 AM - Thread Starter
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My limitation was the physical floor to ceiling restriction. Seems crazy to say but the 150” 2.40 aspect isn’t as wow as I thought it would be. That may change with the material on. Now a 14’ 16:9 would be incredibly immersive!

I got the screen from SeymourAV.com. John was awesome answering the million questions I threw at him. I did a lot of research before landing on this product. I went with the XD material because I’m sitting further than 10 feet. It’s supposed to be the more superior 4K material but you don’t want to be closer than 10’. I believe the max width (or height as it were) is 98”.

Take this all for what it’s with as I haven’t seen an image on it yet.
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My limitation was the physical floor to ceiling restriction. Seems crazy to say but the 150” 2.40 aspect isn’t as wow as I thought it would be. That may change with the material on. Now a 14’ 16:9 would be incredibly immersive!

I got the screen from SeymourAV.com. John was awesome answering the million questions I threw at him. I did a lot of research before landing on this product. I went with the XD material because I’m sitting further than 10 feet. It’s supposed to be the more superior 4K material but you don’t want to be closer than 10’. I believe the max width (or height as it were) is 98”.

Take this all for what it’s with as I haven’t seen an image on it yet.
I talked to John about year or so ago about doing a 163" 2.35:1 AT screen. He was saying I think if I remember if you are back 11' or more that you should be good with the XD material. The 163" screen would be about 64" tall and I think they can go bigger. The price wasn't to bad for the material and they would install grommets to help tie back to a DIY frame. They have a link on their site on how to build a DIY frame as well. Also when they cut it they turn the material on an angle I believe to help it not having imperfections. There a few guys in KC that have their screen and what I have seen of them look pretty good.

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post #384 of 422 Old 05-07-2019, 11:24 AM
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He was saying I think if I remember if you are back 11' or more that you should be good with the XD material.
I remodeled a couple years ago, and my seating distance went from 10'6" to 9'6" and Chris made me upgrade from XD to UF. It was a good decision, though I was fine at 10'6".

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The benches are the first things I built. It’s awesome to have a nice work surface at the right height. I used the Paulk design, abbreviated to fit my garage. They’re on casters to tuck them under the stationary benches when not in use.

I’ll take some shots of the benches later tonight?
Awesome yeah I'd love to see them. Fortunately the house I'm in has a pretty large downstairs garage which for some reason they only put one garage door in despite it being about a three car garage wide. Anyway I'm not complaining as that gave me plenty of room for a big shop. That being said, the dream is still a totally separate shop - and in lottery dreams it has a huge basement where I can store stuff lol.

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post #386 of 422 Old 05-07-2019, 11:43 AM - Thread Starter
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I remodeled a couple years ago, and my seating distance went from 10'6" to 9'6" and Chris made me upgrade from XD to UF. It was a good decision, though I was fine at 10'6".


I knew it was something like that and good to hear that others are fine at 10’+. I’m about 14’ so don’t anticipate any problems. Caveat; this is my first projector so I’m not sure I could identify the problems anyway!
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post #387 of 422 Old 05-08-2019, 01:37 PM
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Screen frame looks great!

I know I'm a bit late, but if you need more Velvet (say, for around the screen, or side walls, or just to drape yourself in while watching a movie), I used Sy fabrics from the US, at $ 8.99 a yard. Triple Velvet I think it was called. I needed several yards ( to do panels to go around the screen wall), so even with exchange rate and shipping, it was a lot cheaper. Came pretty fast as well.

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post #388 of 422 Old 05-08-2019, 08:20 PM - Thread Starter
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Doh, thanks Darren.

I’m in a weird situation now. The material was $200 and I used about 2/3 of it. That means I have about $70 of material left. This is enough to cover the panels top and bottom of the screen. The side panels are 22” so 2 yards will cover them. That means for another $100 I can surround the screen.

If I buy anything else to surround the screen I’ll need 5-6 yards, probably $100 all in from Syfabric but I’ll also be tossing the remainder that I have now. So essentially, it’s a wash.

Does that make any sense at all? I just closed my notebook, long day at the office.
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post #389 of 422 Old 05-09-2019, 03:37 PM
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Doh, thanks Darren.

I’m in a weird situation now. The material was $200 and I used about 2/3 of it. That means I have about $70 of material left. This is enough to cover the panels top and bottom of the screen. The side panels are 22” so 2 yards will cover them. That means for another $100 I can surround the screen.

If I buy anything else to surround the screen I’ll need 5-6 yards, probably $100 all in from Syfabric but I’ll also be tossing the remainder that I have now. So essentially, it’s a wash.

Does that make any sense at all? I just closed my notebook, long day at the office.
That sounds about right. You'll probably want the sides to match. For an extra 2 yards of fabric, might as well bite the bullet. If you plan to do the side walls (say 3 feet out from the screen wall) and/or ceiling to reduce reflections, then it might be worth it to order from Sy fabrics to get the extra. But yeah, for only 2 more yards, and so they match, I would just go with what you have right now.

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post #390 of 422 Old 05-09-2019, 03:48 PM - Thread Starter
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Yeah, just wanting the bleeding to stop!
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