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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Here are some photos of a 98" FolkArt Gunmetal Grey screen.

It looks pretty good in a non-ideal room with a lot of reflective and light-colored surfaces.



It works alright with a few lights on.



It can also perform decently during the day.



This used:
$14 worth of matte poly
$10 worth of FolkArt GunmetalGrey metallic
A little water
These were mixed in a 1:1:1 ratio (about 10oz FolkArt metallic, 10oz matte poly and 10oz water)
A $40-$50 paint sprayer (Wagner Opti-Stain)

It was sprayed onto a ~$10 sheet of ThriftyWhite supported around the back by wood-gluing a few 1x3 poplar boards and made into a very straightforward ZeroEdge style "black" screen.

A screen this dark-colored doesn't always need a ton of projector horsepower hitting it to show a decent image.
I'm using a ~400lm portable (REAL full-color lumen...not exaggerated manufacturer specs). That's less than 14ftL hitting that screen.
However, a brighter projector can help any screen punch through more light and help the image avoid looking dim compared to bright surroundings.



Here are a few comparisons:
That "lighter-colored" sample at bottom/left is CarlsALR...this mix is significantly darker-colored.
For reference, CarlsALR is a similar shade as the CineGrey3D and 5D, the Stewart FirehawkG4, the premade BlackFlame/BFX1 ALR paint and the 8:1GreyTabby DIY mix.
This paint should be more on-par with the DarkEnergyAbyss and StewartPhantomHALR (if anyone is willing to pass on a screen sample of DEA or HALR they are no longer using, feel free to PM me with details)

The samples are (left to right) CarlsALR, Pro-Grey and Pro-White.
The ~150lumen projector is shooting a 6ft-wide image onto a ~0.9gain panel which means about 7ftL is all there is to help the screen fight the lights and lamp.


FolkArt metallic has some EXCELLENT properties:
It's available practically everywhere; Joanne's, Walmart, Amazon..even outside of the USA.
It works amazingly well sprayed, even with my cheapo ($40-$50) Wagner Opti-Stain sprayer, going on smooth and fast with much less visible sagging than other paints and less pitting/bubbling than others.
Because a lot of its pure-state gain seems to be acheived via gloss rather than a lot of metallic/mica, it works best when mixed with a matte-clear (like untinted deep-base) or matte-poly (water-based) which can matte away some of the excessive gloss without concealing the metallic/mica as much as regular paint tends to.

A 1:1 mix of FolkArt metallic "GunmetalGrey" and water-based matte Polyurethane (thinned with about 25%-33% water) works great.
Best of all, despite being one of the darkest-colored mixes I've seen AND hitting around 0.9gain on-axis, it is also VERY clean and smooth-looking.
 

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Discussion Starter #2 (Edited)
Some more details:
aaaand a video showing the Wagner Opti-Stain assembly, mixing, spraying, drying and cleaning..complete with several screw-ups that still led to a nice panel because the mix is so forgiving to spray.
 

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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
Some pictures and comparisons:

70" television near a 98" Gunmetal+poly screen..using a ~400lumen projector

Is that backdrop a flat grey ? Any flat whites for comparison of that claimed 0.9-1.0 gain figure ? It is impressively dark in room light and bright in comparison to the backdrop, but no white ?
Yes the backdrop is flat-grey (around N7.5 or 0.5gain).

HOW DARE YOU and...and other stuff.
Good point, that was a bit lacking.

First, a lights-on, far off-axis shot to show the sample locations..ProGrey on the left, 1:1FA-gunmetal+poly in the middle, ProWhite on the right and the same ~N7.5 backdrop.



Lights are off for all other on/off-axis shots.
0degrees on-axis: Almost as bright as the 1.0-1.1(claimed)ProWhite.



10degrees off-axis:
Here it's dimmed to roughly match the ProGrey sample's brightness.



15degrees off-axis:
Already starting to dim below the ProGrey.



30degrees off-axis:
By now it has fallen below the ~0.5gain neutral grey backdrop.



45degrees off-axis:



But fear not. Even though gain is obviously falling pretty fast on account of the mix's aggressive nature toward ambient light, that doesn't mean it can't take a bright and colorful image at the front..



..AND also show nearly equally bright and colorful screenshot from far off-axis.

Just wanted to show that ALR off-axis shots without a flat/matte comparison in the shot aren't really showing much at all.


The FA-gunmetal+poly sample is sitting on the box in front of a larger 2:1DeepOnyx panel. Farther to the right is CarlsALR and then ProGrey and finally ProWhite at the farthest right.
 

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Is that backdrop a flat grey ? Any flat whites for comparison of that claimed 0.9-1.0 gain figure ? It is impressively dark in room light and bright in comparison to the backdrop, but no white ?
 

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Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)

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Discussion Starter #6
Does anyone happen to remember if there's an Accutel measurement (or any other measurements) for Flexi-Grey/Pro-Grey?
Part of this mix's gain estimate is based on it being a decent ways brighter on-axis than ProGrey which claims to be a 0.8gain material I believe, but I'm wondering if ProGrey might be a little lower than that.
 

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Does anyone happen to remember if there's an Accutel measurement (or any other measurements) for Flexi-Grey/Pro-Grey?
Part of this mix's gain estimate is based on it being a decent ways brighter on-axis than ProGrey which claims to be a 0.8gain material I believe, but I'm wondering if ProGrey might be a little lower than that.
The Amazon page claims 0.8 but one of the reviewers claims 0.7 after direct comparison to multiple other samples. He doesn't claim to have measured with instrumentation, though, which means it is relative to other samples' mfg CLAIMS.
 
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Yes the backdrop is flat-grey (around N7.5 or 0.5gain).

HOW DARE YOU and...and other stuff.
Good point, that was a bit lacking.
Thanks for adding the white. Don't feel picked on, I complained to MM and AZ when they neglected white comparisons too. BTW, do you have a pony fetish ?:p

That last pic is grainy but it appears to be in room light ?

I've asked about the difference in off-axis viewers and side dimming before, but I am still confused about ALR paints in this respect. You place the small sample at 0 degrees to the projector lens and then take pictures from where viewers might be off to the sides. Is this the same result as if the sample was placed off to the side and the viewer is at 0 degrees ? I know you have taken some pictures with the projector just filling the panel, but it seems like there is such high FL at that point that side dimming is not really noticeable. Using just the small sample from Carl's against my 122" white screen, the effect of sample placement was hard to judge.

I tried to take a picture of my white field lamp uniformity issue last night with a mostly white freeze frame of a commercial on TV. The camera pushed blue that wasn't there and exaggerates the brightness difference for some reason, but it does show the sort of outside edge dimming I would expect from an ALR screen's outside edges when viewed at 0 degrees. Am I correct ?
 

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First, a lights-on, far off-axis shot to show the sample locations..ProGrey on the left, 1:1FA-gunmetal+poly in the middle, ProWhite on the right and the same ~N7.5 backdrop.
BTW, every time I see one of these comparisons I think "different occasions might need different screen surfaces". I had a brainstorm about how I could make a mounting for a reversible and flexible screen hinged at the top and pivoted at the sides to get four surfaces: 1) flat white flat screen for use in the dark with guests, 2) flat white curved screen for A-Lens use, 3) ALR flat screen, 4) ALR curved. If I ever get my construction finished in my new room and try to put my screen brainstorms into practice it will either be noteworthy or disaster.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Thanks for adding the white. Don't feel picked on, I complained to MM and AZ when they neglected white comparisons too. BTW, do you have a pony fetish ?:p
No problem, I feel a little dopey for neglecting that comparison in the first place despite asking for it from others myself.
I'm not big into anime so the ponies are almost always my go-to for animated content with large areas of bright, solid colors.

That last pic is grainy but it appears to be in room light ?
Yes, that's with the overhead light turned all the way up. Sadly my old phone/camera decided to bite the dust a little while ago and I replaced it with an even cheaper model with a particularly lackluster camera.

I've asked about the difference in off-axis viewers and side dimming before, but I am still confused about ALR paints in this respect. You place the small sample at 0 degrees to the projector lens and then take pictures from where viewers might be off to the sides. Is this the same result as if the sample was placed off to the side and the viewer is at 0 degrees ?
Yes, either should show the same amount of dimming as long as the angle from PJ-to-screen-to-viewer is the same..BUT using a centered sample while moving the camera/viewer location gives a more consistant result that's a little easier to measure because it isn't affected by throw-ratios or distance.
For example, my 45degree off-axis shots with a centered sample will be about the same as the sample placed at the far left/right edge of a screen with a centered viewer at 1:1distance:width and the projector at ideal height and 1.5:1 throw-ratio. While users with a longer throw-ratio or farther seating-distance (or both) will experience less edge dimming.

If I instead showed pictures of my edge-dimming, everyone would need to take my throw-ratio and camera/viewer distance into account before doing all the same math AND it'd be a little trickier for me to show precise angles since I'd have to take account of three angle effects instead of just one.
The centered sample makes it easier for me and a little easier for others looking for those numbers.

I know you have taken some pictures with the projector just filling the panel, but it seems like there is such high FL at that point that side dimming is not really noticeable.
Because the camera (or eyeball) adjusts for the peak-brightness at center, the difference between the bright center and dimmer sides/corners will still show regardless of overall brightness..although I DID have to lower the output quite a lot to stop the camera from catching the DLP refresh with the super-fast shutter speeds required for capturing a very bright image without over-exposing the shot. So if it makes you feel any better, those tiny shots are probably only around 20ftL-30ftL ("only" being somewhat relative here).

Using just the small sample from Carl's against my 122" white screen, the effect of sample placement was hard to judge.

I tried to take a picture of my white field lamp uniformity issue last night with a mostly white freeze frame of a commercial on TV. The camera pushed blue that wasn't there and exaggerates the brightness difference for some reason, but it does show the sort of outside edge dimming I would expect from an ALR screen's outside edges when viewed at 0 degrees. Am I correct ?
I'd say the camera is probably exaggerating that more than you'd normally see using an ALR screen in person. Cameras tend to exaggerate any brightness differences inside of a picture because they can only capture roughly 1/3 as much contrast as your eye sees and then they stretch that smaller bit out to nearly fill their entire 0-255/16-235 output.

Also, I'm pretty sure you'd hear complaints from absolutely everybody if ALR screens had non-uniformity in person that looked that extreme.
Besides that, yes I think that's a good example of how the non-uniformity can usually appear (except in most cases it will be much less extreme/visible and won't have a noticable change in color-temp).

BTW, every time I see one of these comparisons I think "different occasions might need different screen surfaces". I had a brainstorm about how I could make a mounting for a reversible and flexible screen hinged at the top and pivoted at the sides to get four surfaces: 1) flat white flat screen for use in the dark with guests, 2) flat white curved screen for A-Lens use, 3) ALR flat screen, 4) ALR curved. If I ever get my construction finished in my new room and try to put my screen brainstorms into practice it will either be noteworthy or disaster.
That would be quite a thing to see. Will you be posting any diagrams/sketches somewhere?
 

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That would be quite a thing to see. Will you be posting any diagrams/sketches somewhere?
I need to actually get the room finished before I can actually test my prism-based A-Lens at full size and determine whether the curve improvement to focus and CA at the edges is worth it over a flat screen. Rather than trying to use the "calculator" for curved screens, I intend to do it empirically by just holding white paper away from the wall and see how much the sides need to come forward to eliminate pincushion and restore focus.

Like wise, I need to test some of these ALR formulas to see what I like about them. I've lived with a white screen for 15 years and was not impressed with any of the Carl's samples, so something full size is going to be needed to convince me.

If I decide my brainstorm isn't a brainfart and build it, I will take pictures along the way.

Basically, I envision one of those mobile chalkboards used in classrooms that can be flipped over to show either side (yes, I am old enough they used chalkboards when I was in college). Nothing fancy, all manual. Except instead of being on a mobile stand, the outer frame uprights would be hinged to the wall at the top. It would pull out away from the wall far enough to allow the inner edgeless two-sided screen to flip over on side pivots, then hinge back flush with the wall again. The screen would have fabric stretched over both sides and stapled along the edges no-one would see rather than on the back. The center of the top and bottom rails of the screen would have tabs that could be locked to the wall surface while the outside edges could be pulled forward and held away from the wall to create the curve no matter which surface was facing outward.

I converted my picture to grayscale and bloomed it a bit to show more what the eye sees. The camera really messed up.
 

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Discussion Starter #12 (Edited)
I'm having trouble imagining how you'd make the curve bow round/eliptical instead of turning harsh and triagular.

Besides the hotspot being off-center, that looks like a good example. Plus actual hotspotting/warmspotting moves around depending where you're viewing from anyway, so it could easily end up a bit off-center in reality.

Also I stole your picture..
 

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DIY Granddad (w/help)
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...just sayin'

I would venture you have to get / learn better control over whatever camera / phone your using. Your "ambient Light" content images are full of noise and every shot (excepting the two dark room shots in the 3rd post, and the no content, ambient light-off axis shots in post 5) is underexposed, not overexposed. As such they really do not serve to show much else. It doesn't seem your "ambient light" shots are very much more than low ambient light. Why is that? The dark room shots....you gotta work on those too. (...with more varied, real world content...please) Photography of your examples has always been a weak point. And while you have been quick to analyze and sometimes criticize other much clearer and illustrative efforts as being overexposed or "slightly" misleading, you gotta get your own house in order if your really going to make a conscious effort to show what your efforts are really accomplishing.

(The above critique was offered / intended to help....not belittle)

Good job on the spraying / straining instructions. Something vaguely familiar about them though...can't put my finger on it.....

And using a Matte Poly? Genius !

One thing to point out....the mix as listed involves mixing a small amount (20 oz w/o water - 30 oz w/water) and that is not enough for any but the smallest screens. It also means the 1st sprayed coat attempt must be nailed....perfectly, or the 2nd is not going to compensate for errors or miscues. And any success will depend upon a lot of good fortune.

It also involves sourcing / buying enough small 2 oz Bottles of a particular paint, which can be difficult no matter who carries it.

If one knows to go back and check a variety of Threads & Posts during the Pre- "Micheal's Silver Metallic" era,(2005-2008) the advanced mixes that used metallic paint from Delta Silver and White Pearl started out with the 2 oz sizes. Later 12 oz Bottles were available...for a time. Popularity made both sizes become scarce in Michaels - Hobby Lobby - .....almost anywhere they were sold. Even the Folk Art Sterling Silver (FASS) variety, when desperation called for substitution, became scare if just one end user came in. BAM. Inventory depleted.

Of course very few were painting 86" diagonal screens, so there is that to consider. 4-5 bottles is a far cry from 20-25.

So many went to the Internet. Blick's was one source....a few others were found. But gosh....soon they would get whacked too.

Folk Art has never offered the suggested paint in larger sizes. As such it was not a viable consideration. And....when the 12 oz'er of Delta Silver & Pearl became 1st scarcer then non-existent (Stores dropping Delta)

In my own experience (not opinion) it's is not conducive to assured success among the Masses to suggest that such paints be applied in 2 coats. Nor is the ability of a Spray Gun to lay down heavier coats indicative of the desirability of using one. Nothing can be said against trying to make things easier....but any such attempt takes more R&D than just a small sample. And any such spraying technique as suggested must be scaled up, and my experience shows that trying to get someone to maintain a straight, level line at any consistently accurate distance from the wall over any width greater than 7', (...and manage an accurate drop distance too...) and not lay down too much here and/or too little there.....at 1' - 1.5' per second...................* ......well it isn't going to be successful enough often enough to warrant advocating it as being "easy".

There is more than a few specific reasons a thinner mix applied quicker over several coats is best. Spraying like is mentioned above equates more to getting a heavier coating more akin to rolling. Of course the stated mix above does have a "added water" option, one that when employed suddenly starts to emulate other well know mixes in the lower viscosity realm. That however means that using the correct type sprayer (true small orifice HVLP) and applying it more precisely becomes both desirable and imperative.

There are Electric HVLP guns with finer spray capability than the mentioned Wagner...and they are priced within $10-20.00 on either side. So really, creating a mix / application that calls for the use of a less-than ideal spraying rig / method seems very counter productive.
A Trio of Correct Choices:
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01F8HI0S8?th=1
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B003VKFDEO/
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000DZBP60/

The mix shows enough promise...it should...it's really not anything new and other nearly identical DIY applications have already worked fine, albeit some showed the same Straight on viewing considerations as listed....yet others much less so. What's Old is New. A truly well known idiom in DIY Screen making. And some did involve using Folk Art exclusively. Mostly just to be different...and not be seen as copycats. I remember that those mixes didn't fare well for long, especially when higher content levels were involved / needed to get results that actually made a difference. Good or bad. In all fairness, one cannot get involved with using metallic's without looking for / stumbling onto paints (& ideas) that have already been used. Of course, as the Author notes, the current batch of FASS seems to be different from the more "grainy" older version. But the use of a dark Gray base w/ Poly added to attenuate the overly aggressive reflect'ivity of the FASS....now that might be construed as being new, since very few ever managed to get acceptable results when using FASS as just an addition to a base paint alone.

In closing....DIY'er must accept at least a certain "buy in price point" when attempting to make a surface that will perform better and more effective than a Matte White or Flat Neutral Gray. Absolutely we all want more for less. But giving out "Reality Checks" must be part and parcel to giving out correct and good advice as well.

Post note:
Several YouTube and Ebay Screen Mixes use formulas close to the one within, except few have tried it so "darkly". But there are some...and the same advantages & issues that plague their results are manifest in here. Plenty of Metallic-induced enhancement....poor ALR ability except within a narrow viewing cone...and often restricted PJ placement considerations when the painted surface really had significant ALR ability due to strong Retro-or Angular reflect'ivity.
 

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Discussion Starter #14 (Edited)
I would venture you have to get / learn better control over whatever camera / phone your using. Your "ambient Light" content images are full of noise and every shot (excepting the two dark room shots in the 3rd post, and the no content, ambient light-off axis shots in post 5) is underexposed, not overexposed. As such they really do not serve to show much else. The dark room shots....you gotta work on those too. (...with more varied, real world content...please) Photography of your examples has always been a weak point. And while you have been quick to analyze and sometimes criticize other much clearer and illustrative efforts as being overexposed or "slightly" misleading, you gotta get your own house in order if your really going to make a concussion effort to show what your efforts are really accomplishing.

(The above critique was offered / intended to help....not belittle)

Good job on the spraying / straining instructions. Something vaguely familiar about them though...can't put my finger on it.....

And using a Matte Poly? Genius !

One thing to point out....the mix as listed involves mixing a small amount (20 oz w/o water - 30 oz w/water) and that is not enough for any but the smallest screens. It also means the 1st attempt must be nailed....perfectly, or the 2nd is not going to compensate for errors or miscues. And and success will depend upon a lot of good fortune.

It also involves sourcing / buying enough small 2 oz Bottles of a particular paint, which can be difficult no matter who carries it.

If one knows to go back and check a variety of Threads & Posts during the Pre- "Micheal's Silver Metallic" era,(2005-2008) the advanced mixes that used metallic paint from Delta Silver and White Pearl started out with the 2 oz sizes. Later 12 oz Bottles were available...for a time. Popularity made both sizes become scarce in Michaels - Hobby Lobby - .....almost anywhere they were sold. Even the Folk Art Sterling Silver (FASS) variety, when desperation called for substitution, became scare if just one end user came in. BAM. Inventory depleted.

Of course very few were painting 86" diagonal screens, so there is that to consider. 4-5 bottles is a far cry from 20-25.

So many went to the Internet. Blick's was one source....a few others were found. But gosh....soon they would get whacked too.

Folk Art has never offered the suggested paint in larger sizes. As such it was not a viable consideration. And....when the 12 oz'er of Delta Silver & Pearl became 1st scarcer then non-existent (Stores dropping Delta)

In my own experience (not opinion) it's is not conducive to assured success among the Masses to suggest that such paints be applied in 2 coats. Nor is the ability of a Spray Gun to lay down heavier coats indicative of the desirability of using one. Nothing can be said against trying to make things easier....but any such attempt takes more R&D than just a small sample. And any such spraying technique as suggested must be scaled up, and my experience shows that trying to get someone to maintain a straight, level line at any consistently accurate distance from the wall over any width greater than 7', (...and manage an accurate drop distance too...) and not lay down too much here and/or too little there.....at 1' - 1.5' per second...................* ......well it isn't going to be successful enough often enough to warrant advocating it as being "easy".

There is more than a few specific reasons a thinner mix applied quicker over several coats is best. Spraying like is mentioned above equates more to getting a heavier coating more akin to rolling. Of course the stated mix above does have a "added water" option, one that when employed suddenly starts to emulate other well know mixes in the lower viscosity realm. That however means that using the correct type sprayer (true small orifice HVLP) and applying it more precisely becomes both desirable and imperative.

There are Electric HVLP guns with finer spray capability than the mentioned Wagner...and they are priced within $10-20.00 on either side. So really, creating a mix / application that calls for the use of a less-than ideal spraying rig / method seems very counter productive.
A Trio of Correct Choices:
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01F8HI0S8?th=1
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B003VKFDEO/
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000DZBP60/

The mix shows enough promise...it should...it's really not anything new and other nearly identical DIY applications have already worked fine, albeit some showed the same Straight on viewing considerations as listed....yet others much less so. What's Old is New. A truly well known idiom in DIY Screen making. And some did involve using Folk Art exclusively. Mostly just to be different...and not be seen as copycats. I remember that those mixes didn't fare well for long, especially when higher content levels were involved / needed to get results that actually made a difference. Good or bad. In all fairness, one cannot get involved with using metallic's without looking for / stumbling onto paints (& ideas) that have already been used. Of course, as the Author notes, the current batch of FASS seems to be different from the more "grainy" older version. But the use of a dark Gray base w/ Poly added to attenuate the overly aggressive reflect'ivity of the FASS....now that might be construed as being new, since very few ever managed to get acceptable results when using FASS as just an addition to a base paint alone.

In closing....DIY'er must accept at least a certain "buy in price point" when attempting to make a surface that will perform better and more effective than a Matte White or Flat Neutral Gray. Absolutely we all want more for less. But giving out "Reality Checks" must be part and parcel to giving out correct and good advice as well.

Post note:
Several YouTube and Ebay Screen Mixes use formulas close to the one within, except few have tried it so "darkly". But there are some...and the same advantages & issues that plague their results are manifest in here. Plenty of Metallic-induced enhancement....poor ALR ability except within a narrow viewing cone...and often restricted PJ placement considerations when the painted surface really had significant ALR ability due to strong Retro-or Angular reflect'ivity.
Yeah, I need to remember to use the low ISO and hold steady for cleaner shots instead of using the auto-ISO...or start carrying a second/better camera. The low ISO is smoother/less-grainy but blurs really easily if I'm standing on sailer legs.

Spraying formation is the same I've seen from literally everyone so far besides Crystal Ken B (folks online and even car painters all seem to use a similar format).
Poly; what! I can take advice. ..it just takes a while for me to find somewhere useful to employ it. ;)

I only suggested using this mix WITH the water so far, although it might need to skip water entirely for rolling onto a vertical wall (assuming that even works in the first place with decent results).

I wish the metallics were all easier to get in larger amounts and around the world.
I'm personally trying to stick to metallics that I can easily find in physical stores which are located all around the US (faster than online for me and easier for others to follow along than small-store local items). So I've been somewhat limited to FolkArt, RalphLauren, and Rustoleum.

Because of the worldwide online availability, I eventually intend to goof around with AAA-fine as well.

I've been pretty excited about using the FolkArt specifically because it has provided the smoothest spraying experience (less rough than Rustoleum and less coughy/saggy than RalphLauren/Disney) possibly because of its slightly higher level of gloss compared to those two and faster dry-time. Between that and the poly (or hopefully DeepBase once I've done some testing) the mix is able to lay really smooth and avoid sagging/running even in adverse conditions (cold/wet) and even despite several major screw-ups during the painting process itself (patchy thick/thin areas and having starts and stops and basically everything going wrong).
So I think it's not only cool for the sake of being a particularly dark and aggressive mix with a nicely smooth/round gain-curve, but it's ALSO a really friendly mix to introduce people to spraying because of its fairly ridiculous level of forgiveness.

If you find yourself with a little free time, grab a tube or two of the FolkArt metallic GunmetalGrey and mix it 1:1:1-1.5:1.5:1 with the matte-polycrylic I'm sure you've already got on-hand and water (that's a half'n'half mix of FA-gunmetal and poly and a 25%-33% thinning with water), and give it a spray onto whatever panel you think a 6oz-10oz amount of paintmix can appropriately cover. It's kind of "freeing" having something be so forgiving and inexpensive yet dark-colored and brightly imaged.
It'd also be really cool to hear from you whether or not this level of viscosity is appropriate for your gun of choice..although I'd expect it should work for either since your BFX1 was shown to work fine out of the OptiStain.

The OptiStain is listed as having an 0.8mm tip online I believe.
I personally like it because it's only $40-$50, commonly available in physical stores (some local hardware stores as well as Walmart), quiet, lightweight, creates very little over-spray or mess, no amputation warning like the atomizer guns warn, and it's pretty easy to clean. I don't have anything against other guns, this just happens to be the one I know and like.
 

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DIY Granddad (w/help)
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Spraying formation is the same I've seen from literally everyone so far besides Crystal Ken B (folks online and even car painters all seem to use a similar format).
Poly; what! I can take advice. ..it just takes a while for me to find somewhere useful to employ it. ;)
Awww....now really. Car Painters aside, I was advocating and illustrating the Duster Method since 2005, way long before anyone else even bothered with advocating anything remotely like it. (...although I did get initiated to adding water...via a Canadian Car Painter on Vancouver Island though.....:eek: ) And only then once advanced DIY mixes became as thin as they are. Before that, a 1.6 mm Needle was the smallest that could be effectively used. (ie: The Original Wagner Control Spray - circa 2005)
People around the World have been reading AVS's DIY Screens both before that time and ever since and gleaned their ideas from what they have read / learned. That's just too patently obvious to ignore or discount. So a little specific credit where it is due would be appreciated.

However I cannot say I've seen anyone advocate a 2 Coat process with any mix that was truly thin enough to ever hope to pass through a 0.8 mm Needle. Basically...it's impossible. You had better check your facts...don't depend upon a Seller's description. I say that without fear of contradiction because I speak with / have spoken with the Chief Tech at Wagner / Earlex many times, and it's a totally irrefutable fact that NO Wagner product now in existence possesses a Needle Tip less than 1.8 mm. No question about that can be considered. That's the way it is.

The sheer fact and incident that you were able to apply what you considered an acceptably thick covering in just 2 coats bespeaks the use of at minimum a 1.8 mm tip. Basically....you were led astray by a On-Line Vendor who misquoted or Typo'd an incorrect figure.

I only suggested using this mix WITH the water so far, although it might need to skip water entirely for rolling onto a vertical wall (assuming that even works in the first place with decent results).
With a 1:1 ratio of paint to Poly........I would not suggest that it will, unless a Roller Cover with a ultra smooth nap is used (3/16th) and the application is applied very wet and with minimum "working". Even then the tendency toward Retro-Reflection will jump way up. One other very telling thing to bear in mind is how you do not see anyone suggesting you can get a streak-free finish with Poly using a Roller. The 50% Poly Content still is "too rich" to allow for that, and besides, the rolling of any such mix risks the "Flattened" alignment of the Metallic content at the surface. No....spraying is the only assured method to obtain a truly Flat sheen.


I wish the metallics were all easier to get in larger amounts and around the world.
I'm personally trying to stick to metallics that I can easily find in physical stores which are located all around the US (faster than online for me and easier for others to follow along than small-store local items). So I've been somewhat limited to FolkArt, RalphLauren, and Rustoleum.

Because of the worldwide online availability, I eventually intend to goof around with AAA-fine as well.
I fully understand...but alas few outlets ever keep more than 4-5 bottles in stock. The Internet is about the only source where one get get what quantity one needs, but as you well know, many are loath to go to that trouble. So at times they must hit every available location within their given local. That's how it has rolled since the beginning.....

As far as the AAA-Fine, it's new formula makes it much more like a Mica product...but it's aluminum still creates more issues than advantages if it is used in the amounts you've been trying with Mica -based products. And in reality...it's neither inexpensive nor all that widely available unless one also shops it on the Web.


I've been pretty excited about using the FolkArt specifically because it has provided the smoothest spraying experience (less rough than Rustoleum and less coughy/saggy than RalphLauren/Disney) possibly because of its slightly higher level of gloss compared to those two and faster dry-time. Between that and the poly (or hopefully DeepBase once I've done some testing) the mix is able to lay really smooth and avoid sagging/running even in adverse conditions (cold/wet) and even despite several major screw-ups during the painting process itself (patchy thick/thin areas and having starts and stops and basically everything going wrong).
So I think it's not only cool for the sake of being a particularly dark and aggressive mix with a nicely smooth/round gain-curve, but it's ALSO a really friendly mix to introduce people to spraying because of its fairly ridiculous level of forgiveness.
Ftoast, I can tell ya sumpthin'....it is the very situation your potentially facing with the RL-Disney paints...and before that the Martha Stewart variety that led to the use of the RustOleum. And while nothing in life or Paint Distribution is guaranteed, RustOleum stands a far greater chance of being around for a far longer period.

And offering further clarification, the RustOleum SM is only "rough" when it is not thinned enough and applied in the most optimal manner. I and others have no such results when using a properly thinned mix with a true 1.0 mm Tip.

You cannot expect the use of Deep Base to substitute for the Thinning and Translucent properties of Poly. The latter not having been given enough mention or credit in how it works to improve diffused reflection. I daresay that without it your attempts would have failed to be worth publishing. Going back many years, the original 1:1:1 mix of MMud (1 Part UPW - 1 Part Deep Base - 1 Part Behr White Pearl ) was a very thick, heavy mix. It would roll out just fine....but spraying with even a 2.2 mm Needle was an exercise in going verrrrry slowly. Proper applied, it was held up against the Stewart StudioTek 100 and a bit later the 130, and found to be wholly comparable (...and crazy less expensive...) But Spraying slowly with consistency was not something the NOOB could easily do right off the bat

The addition of another :1 Part Water to the MMud mix made it truly spray-able, (...bless that Canuck's advice...) nbut it was the substitution of 75% of the Water with a Satin Poly ( and 6 oz Behr Silver Metallic...) that ushered in RS-MaxxMudd, and the realization that yeah....ambient light resistance with no loss of gain was a real possibility.

(BTW... Deep Base is no Thinner or contains no less Titanium White than a UPW....it simply comes with less in the Can so more Tint can be added. I had the same misunderstanding for sometime, and once a fellow AVS / Painter set me straight, the need to use Deep Base became a thing of the past....until recently with the ultra Dark Gray Base I've used in lue of BF Colorant)

If you find yourself with a little free time, grab a tube or two of the FolkArt metallic GunmetalGrey and mix it 1:1:1-1.5:1.5:1 with the matte-polycrylic I'm sure you've already got on-hand and water (that's a half'n'half mix of FA-gunmetal and poly and a 25%-33% thinning with water), and give it a spray onto whatever panel you think a 6oz-10oz amount of paint mix can appropriately cover. It's kind of "freeing" having something be so forgiving and inexpensive yet dark-colored and brightly imaged.
While I appreciate the suggestion, and can understand you own enthusiasm, my doing so would amount to regressing at best, and also be a exercise in trying something I already know will not deliver the degree of performance I demand...and want to refer to others.

I'm sure you've seen both the "Full Wall Screens" I've posted Threads about, both of which are in the least every bit as dark or darker than the Gun Metal Gray, and are comprised of a custom Color Mix (...which I published...) using Glidden Diamond Base 3 (essentially a Deep Base).....Matte Poly, and BFX1I

They both of them neither exhibit the degree of off-axis dimming or limited viewing cone seen in your lit-room, non image examples above. And I noted that the images where you showed the three contrasting samples in ambient light at different viewing angles did not include any projected examples. Had you done so, the results seen as the angle of viewing was increased would have shown the center example to be tremendously attenuated in comparison.

And....I still insist it's not going to be "less expensive" if utilized in the amounts a 1:1:1 mix will require for any screen above 86" diagonal, and almost prohibitively so for 120"ers+ And what about getting all the paint out of all those little bottles? Sheesh...that was always a issue raised by Members. I'd hate to see that revisited.

It'd also be really cool to hear from you whether or not this level of viscosity is appropriate for your gun of choice..although I'd expect it should work for either since your BFX1 was shown to work fine out of the OptiStain.
It will work with your Gun. No chance at all with any gun that sports a finer Needle / Nozzle assembly.

The OptiStain is listed as having an 0.8mm tip online I believe.
I personally like it because it's only $40-$50, commonly available in physical stores (some local hardware stores as well as Walmart), quiet, lightweight, creates very little over-spray or mess, no amputation warning like the atomizer guns warn, and it's pretty easy to clean. I don't have anything against other guns, this just happens to be the one I know and like.
Well I think all the above concerning Tip Size has been settled. You can check yourself though...and easily enough by calling the Chief Tech for Wagner / Earlex @ 888-783-2612

Tell 'em Maurice sent'cha. We go back a'ways. ;)

In the end, you can at least be advised that the Opti-Stain (...or the Standard Control Spray ) can indeed spay out the mix you have with acceptable results....but you will have even better results if you at least increase the number of coats to 4-5 by increasing your speed by a minimum of 2x. You will also be doing others a service by suggesting such, and therein helping them avoid the runs, drips, and sags that they will get once they start spraying screens of normal sizes.
 

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Discussion Starter #16 (Edited)
Awww....now really. Car Painters aside, I was advocating and illustrating the Duster Method since 2005, way long before anyone else even bothered with advocating anything remotely like it. (...although I did get initiated to adding water...via a Canadian Car Painter on Vancouver Island though.....:eek: ) And only then once advanced DIY mixes became as thin as they are. Before that, a 1.6 mm Needle was the smallest that could be effectively used. (ie: The Original Wagner Control Spray - circa 2005)
People around the World have been reading AVS's DIY Screens both before that time and ever since and gleaned their ideas from what they have read / learned. That's just too patently obvious to ignore or discount. So a little specific credit where it is due would be appreciated.

However I cannot say I've seen anyone advocate a 2 Coat process with any mix that was truly thin enough to ever hope to pass through a 0.8 mm Needle. Basically...it's impossible. You had better check your facts...don't depend upon a Seller's description. I say that without fear of contradiction because I speak with / have spoken with the Chief Tech at Wagner / Earlex many times, and it's a totally irrefutable fact that NO Wagner product now in existence possesses a Needle Tip less than 1.8 mm. No question about that can be considered. That's the way it is.

The sheer fact and incident that you were able to apply what you considered an acceptably thick covering in just 2 coats bespeaks the use of at minimum a 1.8 mm tip. Basically....you were led astray by a On-Line Vendor who misquoted or Typo'd an incorrect figure.



With a 1:1 ratio of paint to Poly........I would not suggest that it will, unless a Roller Cover with a ultra smooth nap is used (3/16th) and the application is applied very wet and with minimum "working". Even then the tendency toward Retro-Reflection will jump way up. One other very telling thing to bear in mind is how you do not see anyone suggesting you can get a streak-free finish with Poly using a Roller. The 50% Poly Content still is "too rich" to allow for that, and besides, the rolling of any such mix risks the "Flattened" alignment of the Metallic content at the surface. No....spraying is the only assured method to obtain a truly Flat sheen.




I fully understand...but alas few outlets ever keep more than 4-5 bottles in stock. The Internet is about the only source where one get get what quantity one needs, but as you well know, many are loath to go to that trouble. So at times they must hit every available location within their given local. That's how it has rolled since the beginning.....

As far as the AAA-Fine, it's new formula makes it much more like a Mica product...but it's aluminum still creates more issues than advantages if it is used in the amounts you've been trying with Mica -based products. And in reality...it's neither inexpensive nor all that widely available unless one also shops it on the Web.




Ftoast, I can tell ya sumpthin'....it is the very situation your potentially facing with the RL-Disney paints...and before that the Martha Stewart variety that led to the use of the RustOleum. And while nothing in life or Paint Distribution is guaranteed, RustOleum stands a far greater chance of being around for a far longer period.

And offering further clarification, the RustOleum SM is only "rough" when it is not thinned enough and applied in the most optimal manner. I and others have no such results when using a properly thinned mix with a true 1.0 mm Tip.

You cannot expect the use of Deep Base to substitute for the Thinning and Translucent properties of Poly. The latter not having been given enough mention or credit in how it works to improve diffused reflection. I daresay that without it your attempts would have failed to be worth publishing. Going back many years, the original 1:1:1 mix of MMud (1 Part UPW - 1 Part Deep Base - 1 Part Behr White Pearl ) was a very thick, heavy mix. It would roll out just fine....but spraying with even a 2.2 mm Needle was an exercise in going verrrrry slowly. Proper applied, it was held up against the Stewart StudioTek 100 and a bit later the 130, and found to be wholly comparable (...and crazy less expensive...) But Spraying slowly with consistency was not something the NOOB could easily do right off the bat

The addition of another :1 Part Water to the MMud mix made it truly spray-able, (...bless that Canuck's advice...) nbut it was the substitution of 75% of the Water with a Satin Poly ( and 6 oz Behr Silver Metallic...) that ushered in RS-MaxxMudd, and the realization that yeah....ambient light resistance with no loss of gain was a real possibility.

(BTW... Deep Base is no Thinner or contains no less Titanium White than a UPW....it simply comes with less in the Can so more Tint can be added. I had the same misunderstanding for sometime, and once a fellow AVS / Painter set me straight, the need to use Deep Base became a thing of the past....until recently with the ultra Dark Gray Base I've used in lue of BF Colorant)



While I appreciate the suggestion, and can understand you own enthusiasm, my doing so would amount to regressing at best, and also be a exercise in trying something I already know will not deliver the degree of performance I demand...and want to refer to others.

I'm sure you've seen both the "Full Wall Screens" I've posted Threads about, both of which are in the least every bit as dark or darker than the Gun Metal Gray, and are comprised of a custom Color Mix (...which I published...) using Glidden Diamond Base 3 (essentially a Deep Base).....Matte Poly, and BFX1I

They both of them neither exhibit the degree of off-axis dimming or limited viewing cone seen in your lit-room, non image examples above. And I noted that the images where you showed the three contrasting samples in ambient light at different viewing angles did not include any projected examples. Had you done so, the results seen as the angle of viewing was increased would have shown the center example to be tremendously attenuated in comparison.

And....I still insist it's not going to be "less expensive" if utilized in the amounts a 1:1:1 mix will require for any screen above 86" diagonal, and almost prohibitively so for 120"ers+ And what about getting all the paint out of all those little bottles? Sheesh...that was always a issue raised by Members. I'd hate to see that revisited.



It will work with your Gun. No chance at all with any gun that sports a finer Needle / Nozzle assembly.



Well I think all the above concerning Tip Size has been settled. You can check yourself though...and easily enough by calling the Chief Tech for Wagner / Earlex @ 888-783-2612

Tell 'em Maurice sent'cha. We go back a'ways. ;)

In the end, you can at least be advised that the Opti-Stain (...or the Standard Control Spray ) can indeed spay out the mix you have with acceptable results....but you will have even better results if you at least increase the number of coats to 4-5 by increasing your speed by a minimum of 2x. You will also be doing others a service by suggesting such, and therein helping them avoid the runs, drips, and sags that they will get once they start spraying screens of normal sizes.
I'll probably try calling Wagner. If they're half as helpful over the phone as Carl's, it'll be a treat just for the experience. (Carl's really went above and beyond)
I could easily be wrong about that 0.8mm size as I've only seen it "spec'ed" on Amazon. If it gives you a fuller scope, this mix IS pretty watery-thin..thinner than milk. That's why I'm praising the FA so hard for not running/sagging.

Once I nail down a specific mix (either the 1:1:1 Gunmetal:poly:water or a darker 1:1:1:1.5 Black:Gunmetal:poly:water most likely) I plan to paint a 7ft-8ft wide screen which should give me a better idea of how many FolkArt tubes will fill different screen-sizes.
I expect 4-5 tubes of Gunmetal to be plenty for a 100"-110" screen, but I guess I'll find out.

I wonder what the typical wait time is for stores to special order extra paint for something bigger

I'm quite certain you were led astray (or misunderstood possibly) about the starting amount of tint/KX in most deep/dark-base (the base used for making black paints and the darker greys and deepest colors) before the store adds your requested colors. If you grab a can of deep/dark-base off the shelf and don't have it tinted at the store it will go onto a surface milky/translucent and dries to become almost completely clear/transparent.
You and I actually had this same conversation a year or two ago.

If you grab a single tube of gunmetal FA metallic and compare its color to BFX1 I think you'll find the Gunmetal to be a decent ways darker-colored than the BFX1. If BFX1 can be darkened by adding that custom paint-mix you posted earlier which is around N5.5-N5.7, the Gunmetal's N3.7-N4 shade will be deeper.

Should thinned flat base probably behave better for rolling than the matte poly or should the poly probably handle rolling just as well or better?
I mean in a mix..not alone, of course.
 

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Discussion Starter #17 (Edited)
Tried to organize the first posts a little better and completed most of the experimenting I planned on doing. Hopefully things are a little neater now..though I'm totally open to critiques for making it easier to get through.

It's looking like FolkArt metallic makes a better sprayed mix than just about any other metallic but a poorer rolled mix than just about any other metallic..so I can highly recommend spraying this but caution against rolling unless you're doing it for kicks instead of use.

I'm VERY happy with how well the same 1:1 metallic and poly (thinned with about 30%water) mixes work using the SterlingSilver or Pearl metallics either alone or mixed with the Gunmetal..The lighter metallic colors have slightly higher concentrations of metallic/mica which leads to slightly higher gain AND they can be used to lighten the surface-color to create less aggressive screens that look amazingly clean and uniform while still fighting a decent amount of ambient light.
I have also noticed the Pearl and Sterling FA metallics seem to use less pigment which leaves the mixes a little more translucent..which could present a problem if applied over a very dark surface.

Further dilluting the metallic with even higher amounts of matte water-based poly drops gain suprisingly less than I'd expect, but the lack of color-coverage gets in the way of allowing the user the cover larger areas with fewer tubes of FolkArt.
 

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Tried to organize the first posts a little better and completed most of the experimenting I planned on doing. Hopefully things are a little neater now..though I'm totally open to critiques for making it easier to get through.
Well, shucks. It does seem more organized now, but I can't remember what it looked like before, so ...

I do think the larger panel shot in the first post is an excellent addition. That crowd shot was obviously chosen to show off the darks with the lamp so close by, but I'd like to see a shot with a mix of lighter colors. Like these from Aeon Flux





The last one especially should be a good test of keeping true the variations and details in both whites and blacks side by side.

Also, your video doesn't make it clear what measurements of what components you are using. Did you already have poly in the cup and then added water to it, and then the FA Gunmetal or was that a darker FA ? And the spitting the gun did was not apparent in the end result ?
 

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Discussion Starter #19 (Edited)
That IS a nice screenshot for showing both shadow and highlight details at once..consider it stolen.


I was about to add in the mix used in the video until I rememered it was one of the SequinBlack tests which I consider to all be failures for all but the brightest projectors on the most modest-sized screens (we're talking 70" screens for Epson 2040 and Benq 2050 extreme low gain)..Granted, for that small niche they'd have an image that's bright on a screen as black as their Blueray player.

I believe the order in the video was; poly, then water, then FA SequinBlack..I want to say that was the 3:1:2 mix of metallic : poly : water which has a somewhat glossy sheen from too little poly being used.

Nope, the panel still turned out smooth and uniform with an image on it after the second coat...which was interrupted by the panel curling so hard it ripped itself loose from the tape because it was too cold that night. Had to grab more tape and then restart the second coat. It was pretty ridiculous.
The gun started spitting because I used too little paint which had the gun sucking air (when kept slightly tilted in the cup's straw direction you can use as little as 1oz of mix in that gun for a little panel, but tilting away from the straw or using less will cause it to start sucking air and sputtering).

That bigger panel (using the 1:1:1 mix of Gunmetal : Poly : water) was also sprayed during a colder night and I sprayed the first coat WAY too slow so it started sagging down the slippery front-side of the thrifty-white until I attacked it with the blow-dryer for a little while. I made sure to spray the second coat at a thinner ~1ft/sec and 10"-12"distance and blow-dried it for a minute or two and then ran out of paint right away while trying to start a third coat.
I was using only 0.55ounces of mix per square-foot of panel at the time so the overly thick first coat and some later goofing around took too much paint for there to be a third coat..so I called it "done" and it still turned out great.
 

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That IS a nice screenshot for showing both shadow and highlight details at once..consider it stolen.
Happy to help !

That sunlight is just murder. I suspect in anything less extreme the screen does not lose the details in the folds of her white outfit or the details of the various textures in her black tactical outfit ? I realize it is kind of amazing to even have an image in that kind of lighting, but come on ...

I thought the FA in the video looked awful dark, but your Gunmetal screen is pretty dark, too, so I wasn't sure. Based on your gain estimates for combinations of various FAs, I think I'd look to mix some Pearl and Gunmetal to keep gain above 1.0 while remaining relatively dark. I am kind of enthralled with the idea of surprising guests with how dark a screen can be and still be nice and bright in use. And if it still isn't bright enough for 2.40:1 use at 11' wide, there is still the reverse side to do with just Pearl-Poly on a white base, right ?

I actually read the entire S-I-L-V-E-R thread last night and it looked promising for high-gain until I found out the Behr Faux Glaze is off the market and nobody ever confirmed a substitute. Your use of the matte poly seems like it does the same as the faux glaze did, but MM told someone in that thread that poly or even a different glaze was not a good substitute.
 
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