I mounted the screen yesterday. Almost everything went smoothly as per plan and the final result is a nice taut 120" screen on my diy frame.
One word of caution though: the front surface is very easily damaged! At one point I had the roller bar rest on the screen (by mistake) and the resulting indendation caused light to reflect improperly. Fortunately I was able to position the screen so that it ended up on an edge and not in the visible region. BE VERY CAREFUL and DO NOT PUT IT ON A ROUGH SURFACE!
I had bought a size larger than I needed (I needed 120", but bought 133") ... I am quite glad that I did since it gave me sufficient excess to work with. I do not believe that I could've achieved a clean fit had I gone for the 120". The price differential was only $40 shipped and well worth it. I bought mine from Cousin's Video.
Extremely smooth internet purchasing experience and they kept me constantly posted of what was going on by email. The screen came in a couple of days ahead of the promised date.
With the 133", I was able to use the canvas plier and pull everything real nice and tight. By the way, I found that a combination of using the plier for tension and hands for removing wrinkles worked the best. Two pairs of hands are highly recommended.
In spite of all my care when I finally projected an image on the screen, I noticed 5 small marks near the left top edge. They are not scratches but appear more like scuffs or places where the surface has been pushed in a bit. Each is about 1-2mm wide and 3-4mm long ... not that big, but from certain angles
with a bright clear white image you can see them. For the most part they are not noticeable (but I know that they are there which is more hassling!). With the projector off I cannot see them (unless I go closeby looking for them) and I even wonder if it was a defect the screen came with. In any case since I've cut it all up, I can't really go back to DaLite. With a 4x3 or 1x2.35 image, there is nothing projected on it (its in the first couple of inches from the top about a foot from the left edge). I've absolutely no idea of when this could've happened, but can easily live with it (as though I have a choice!). For those of you are starting to worry ... don't! This a very minor issue and I'm sure that it could easily happen when the screen is rolled up and down. Its just that the screen needs care.
The image is nice and punchy and all my worries about not being in the cone etc. have been put to rest. When I first had the screen laid out on the floor, I noticed that the viewing cone was real. As I moved my head away from the source of light, the gain dropped off dramatically. But with the screen up and an image projected, I can move around quite a bit with no noticeable dropoff. My screen is about 12 feet from the projector. The projector (AE900u) is ceiling mounted (78" from floor) and even with my head 3.5 feet below the projector and to one side (i.e. not the best seat), the image is far better than the blackout cloth I had. I really have to move to the edge of the room (beyond the edges of the screen) to notice any significant drop off). I had originally planned on lowering my projector, but now I think I'll wait and see. For those that are thinking in terms of angles, my angles are in excess of 15 degrees ... and it's fine. Standing up and coming into the cone makes it only marginally brighter in my opinion. The eyes easily get used to the differences in brightness ... so if you are on the "edge" of the theoretical limits and worrying about it ... don't ... just get the High Power!
The color balance is slightly different and I had to recalibrate using AVIA. Not only did I have to adjust the contrast and brightness settings, but the color AND tint changed a bit too. I plan to do a full grayscale (CalMAN and SpyderPro) a few weeks later when I get some time.
Ok, the attached zips file have some shots: There are 18 images (numbered and with text names). The file was too big to upload in one shot, so I've loaded them separately ...
", "2 OuterCase2.jpg
" and "3 EndCapsEtc.jpg
These comprise the outer shell of the Model C. I had to get the end caps off (which were each held by 4 screws) and slide the screen assembly out AFTER releasing the tension. Along with the end caps you can see the metal plates that maintained the tension. BE CAREFUL NOT TO HURT YOURSELF AS THESE ARE UNDER TENSION AND CAN FLY OUT. DON'T STAND IN THE WAY.
Once the roller is out ... "4 RollerEdge1.jpg
" and "5 RollerEdge2.jpg
" show you the two sides. Notice that the screen has been unrolled.
At the other end of the screen is the pull bar which would normally be used to pull the screen down and hold it in place. These are held by 8 screws (4 on each end) again. "6 PullBarScrews.jpg
Remove them and the plate falls off and the bar can then be slid out easily. "7 PullBarRemoval.jpg
" ... the blue toe you see is from an earlier "accident"
At the roller end, the screen is fastened to the metal roller by brown tape (looks like strong postal tape) : "8 ScreenAtRollerEnd.jpg
". Peel it off carefully and then the roller and pull bar are off ... "9 RollerAndPullBar.jpg
The screen is now ready for trimming etc: "10 ScreenUnrolled1.jpg
" and "11 ScreenUnrolled2.jpg
". ... and cut as well "12 AllCutAndReadyForMounting.jpg
Using instructions on the web on mounting canvas (search for "How to stretch canvas" in yahoo):
", "14 FinishingAnEdge.jpg
", "15 AllEdgesDone.jpg
The "gray" cloth underneath is the rear side of the Blackout Cloth I'd been using all these days ... in image 17 below I turned off the flash to show that its not all that darker than the High Power normally. Now for the final product ... (still need to do a black trim)
", "17 FinishedScreen2.jpg
", "18 FinishedScreen3.jpg
Snaps1.zip 423.6865234375k . file
Snaps2.zip 412.6171875k . file
Snaps3.zip 498.1533203125k . file