Electric or Manual Floor Raising Screen Recommendations - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 4 Old 06-27-2020, 06:06 AM - Thread Starter
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Electric or Manual Floor Raising Screen Recommendations

This thread is semi DIY related so I initially posted it in the DIY section but its had no replies after a few days as there seems to be lower traffic there and the DIY they seem to be talking about mostly is DIY Fixed Screens and Paints etc. However, although I will ultimately be potentially DIY Modifying a Screen Recommended here, it is Pre-made screen recommendations I am looking for, so I feel this Thread does actually belong here and hope the mods don't move it back to DIY Screens.

Ultimately I want to build a 'Floor Raising' Screen inside the top of a Faux Radiator Cabinet under a wall mounted TV. To all intents and purposes it will look like a Radiator cabinet when not in use but when we want to use the Projector, the 'Floor Raising' screen will rise out of the top of the 'Radiator Cabinet' in front of the TV and the 5.1 sound will start booming out of the Low Profile Front, Left, Center & Right speakers and Subwoofer hidden inside the Radiator Cabinet.

Initially when I formulated this idea years ago, I planned to DIY everything including the Screen raising mechanisms by replicating what I saw on how these things work Online. However, upon restating research the other day I came across the VividStorm screens and the price while still a lot of money is a lot cheaper than I remember these things going for a few years ago. ie. a 120" Electric Floor Raising Screen with Long Throw ALR screen material and Tab Tensioning. After working out currency conversions and Customs Duties and Taxes, one of these screens would cost about €1,700 from Alibaba in China to my door here in Ireland. Unfortunately, I also then read that many people experienced Quality control issues with these VividStorm screens. I don't want to have spent that kind of money and then have to send the thing back to the other side of the world at great expense.

So I looked at other screens including Manual Floor Raising Screens and noted that they were shockingly cheaper. Sure these didn't have tab tensioning or ALR screen material but they were a Floor raising 120" screen for literally €300 !! I also noted how they worked. Piston Rods attached to the Scissors Lift Arms held the screen at whatever height the user manually pulled the screen up to. It seems to me that one of these Piston Rods could easily be replaced with a 12v Linear Actuator with the same Travel, which would electrically raise the screen. Suitable Linear Actuators are about €60 and an IR control box/relay probably a similar amount. I am presuming that the reason the manufacturers of Electric Floor Raising screens don't use Linear Actuators in there screens this was is that it would compromise the low profil formfactor of these screens designed to sit on a floor. However, for my use case with it mounted in the top of a Custom built Faux Radiator cabinet, I am not constrained the same way.

So basically, what I need is recommendations for 120" 16:9 Electric or Manual Floor Raising Screens. If there are suitable cheaper more locally available Electric screens those would be literally straight drop ins into my Radiator Cabinet whereas the Manual Floor Raising screens I would be modifying in order to electrically raise and lower them as described earlier. Therefor recommendations for both Electric and Manual Floor Raising screens are welcome! Google Algorithms are biasing my search results to my earlier searches and are just throwing up more VividStorm links. I've had a look on the sites of Screen makers that I know, like Da-Lite and Draper but theres a lot more reliable names in Projection screens nowadays compared to when I last looked and I don't want to miss any potential options.

TIA.

Last edited by Ca1ibos; 06-27-2020 at 08:07 AM.
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post #2 of 4 Old 06-27-2020, 09:15 AM
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I have been doing somewhat similar research since I could really use a floor lifting mechanism to raise a 120" diagonal screen since I wish to place it in front of a window under a sloped ceiling. I have looked at using building a lead screw mechanism to raise the screen 5 feet but am concluding that it is just too complicated (main issue is keeping the guiderails sufficiently parallel). . This does not seem like an insurmountable problem but alas there seems to be little DIY info out there.

It seems like the lifting mechanism could be decoupled from the screen such that any retractable screen could be purchased and mounted to the lifting mechanism but perhaps I am missing something?
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post #3 of 4 Old 06-27-2020, 10:43 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by wahoospiff View Post
I have been doing somewhat similar research since I could really use a floor lifting mechanism to raise a 120" diagonal screen since I wish to place it in front of a window under a sloped ceiling. I have looked at using building a lead screw mechanism to raise the screen 5 feet but am concluding that it is just too complicated (main issue is keeping the guiderails sufficiently parallel). . This does not seem like an insurmountable problem but alas there seems to be little DIY info out there.

It seems like the lifting mechanism could be decoupled from the screen such that any retractable screen could be purchased and mounted to the lifting mechanism but perhaps I am missing something?
I always figured that if I was to go the complete DIY route and also replicate the Scissors ‘arms’ >< myself, that the donor Screen could even be a manual pull down with the inertial lock disabled. ie. the thing that it has in common with roller blinds where you have to give the screen a downward tug before raising it. With that disabled you have constant tension and impetus to retract from the spring rollers and its your Scissors lift that resists this and when you lower the screen/scissors lift, the screen roller will automatically wind up the screen.

TBH given how much cheaper Manual Screens are, given how simple the scissors lift, piston, linear actuator idea is (assuming no gotchas I haven't thought of), given how much more living-room friendly a screen rising out of a TV unit instead of permanently hanging on the wall is, well, I am amazed more people haven't gone down this route long ago....which is why I have this nagging feeling that there is a Gotcha I haven’t thought of.
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post #4 of 4 Old 06-28-2020, 03:32 AM - Thread Starter
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Googling more.

One thing I noticed is that Tab Tensioned Floor raising screens have much wider chassis/rollers than the Screen itself. Likely because of the need for the roller to pull on the tab tensioning cable from an angle when the screen is fully extended to its full height. However for my install it would never extend to its full height and the large 'Black Drop' below the screen is surplus to my requirements as I would only ever extend it to the point where just the 16:9 area and a small amount of black drop under the screen is visible. Given what I said in my previous reply about Manual Pull downs (and disabling inertial lock on roller) it got me looking at Manual or Electric Pull downs as donor screens again. Their chassis/rollers don't seem to need to be as wide and extend as far past the viewable screen width. So perhaps a Manual or electric pull down tab tensioned screen could be a good donor screen for this project and I would build the scissors >< mechanism with piston and linear actuator myself. I'd have to do some research but there is the possibility that I could go with an Electric Tab Tensioned Pull down and simply disconnect the electronics and relays etc from their motor and connect them up to my linear actuator instead giving me all the electronics and RF and 5v/12v trigger functionality. Going this route might bring the cost back up not far from an electric Tab Tensioned Floor Raising screen but the benefit is that I wouldn't have to make large screen size compromise in order to get Tab Tensioning on my modded screen because of the extra wide rollers.

EDIT

I don't know what I was looking at last night actually. Can't find any tab tensioned pull downs that don't have a much wider chassis/roller.

Another potential option might be a Manual/Electric Pull-Down non tab tensioned but with a specialist screen material. Would I be remembering correctly that High gain screens have a thicker screen material less prone to waves and thus not as likely to miss Tab Tensioning on screens using that material?

Last edited by Ca1ibos; 06-28-2020 at 05:07 AM.
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