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Home Theater and a Woodshop: A match made in heaven


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#1 of 11 David Tolsky

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Posted March 11 2001 - 05:07 PM

Let me start out by saying I've been waiting for this Topic Area for a long time. There is lots to be learned and I am a big DIY guy, so let the good times roll!
I am fortunate that I am able to use one hobby, Woodworking, to compliment my other hobby, Home Theater. My latest project is replacing all my plastic armrest/cupholders on my cinema seats with solid oak pieces. I have a ton of oak in my shop and this project was the perfect excuse to use some of it up. I also plan on making an oak version of the DVD display with a "Now Showing" sign above, as well as a shelving system for all the dvd's.
Moving on, you know the Film Reel table in the Bass catalogue that sells for over $300? I've got three of those tables in the works and when finished, I'll complete them all for about three quarters of what one of the catalogue model costs. In the future, I'll figure out a way to post some photos here.

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#2 of 11 gregstaten

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Posted March 12 2001 - 12:40 AM

I've been building film reel tables too!

I've built two from ten inch 35mm reels and will build one more and three eighteen inch 35mm reel tables as well.

I spray painted the reels flat black and mounted them onto a mike stand. Then I had a piece of glass custom cut to exactly fit the top. Total cost for two tables: about $25.

I'm using the 10" reel tables in my current home theater as side tables. I plan to use the 18" reels as tables in the lobby of my soon to be built screening room.

-greg


#3 of 11 David A. Frattaroli

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Posted March 12 2001 - 01:56 AM

David, I'm in the same position you are. We're planning a remodel of our living to accomodate a front projector and I'll be building a a wall unit that will conceal the screen. Talk about a lateral expansion from one hobby into another.

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#4 of 11 Ron-P

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Posted March 12 2001 - 02:36 AM

Quote:
My latest project is replacing all my plastic armrest/cupholders on my cinema seats with solid oak pieces.
David,

Are you able to take pics of your new oak armrests? I eventually plan on doing the same with my theater seats. I want to find a way to do it w/o damaging or altering the original seats/armrests in any way.

I love wood working and new armrests are on my to-do list. Just interested in other ideas on the issue. Just this past weekend I built a nice enclosure for all my gear which resides in my closet on a flexy rack.


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#5 of 11 David Tolsky

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Posted March 12 2001 - 04:15 AM

Ron P, I'll be happy to post some pictures of the armrests soon. In the mean time I'll try to explain my progress. I started with the ends of the isles. They originally came with wooden block armrests, not even w/cupholders like the rest of the row, because they are "ends". Not any more. I first had to dissasemble the metal end pieces from the rows and take them to a metal machinist. I needed them ground down and certain pieces removed so I could eventually fit the new oak piece. Each end came with an ugly particle board flat end piece with old looking veneer. Not any more.
I replaced those with oak as well so they would match the new armrests. With the ground-down metal I could now fasten the oak armrest to the top of the flat oak piece using furniture dowels and wood glue. It would be easy for me to e-mail you a photo of this but I'd like to post it here. What's the easiest way to do that without linking to a website?

The Film Reel tables: I opted to go the strong rout. I got my reels from a contact at Warner Bros. I bought a 20' piece of mild steel tubing, one eighth thick, seven eights diameter. Having that cut to 9 twenty-one inch pieces (3 per table) and having a welder weld them permanently in place. With the extra tubing left over he is going to cut some spacers to put in between the reel ends for reinforcement-3 in each reel. Already had the glass cut to 20 and a half inches, to overlap the reel by about 3 inches.
These tables are going to be super strong, indestructable structures. They'll cost me about $70 per table when done.
I spray painted the reels 1) dull grey, 2) blue metal flake, and 3) green metal flake. They look great!

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#6 of 11 Grant B

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Posted March 12 2001 - 06:02 AM

David
You and me both.
I realized very quickly the so called "custom" entertainment centers were $$$$ and pretty lame. A custom closet designer that advertised entertainment centers quoted me $13,000 and that was after I deleted a few of my wants.
I ended up finding a huge armoire from the 20's for $500. All the rest, I built from scratch. I think the total was about 1/10th of the price.
Here's the outcome
http://www.hometheat....ent/28843.html
Have fun
Grant
ps, the reels sound great! Is there a website or phone number that the rest of us can use to pick some up?
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#7 of 11 David Tolsky

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Posted March 12 2001 - 07:26 AM

Grant, I honestly don't know if there is a site that sells reels themselves, although I've seen some on ebay. I've gotten mine directly from the studio because I'm lucky enough to know some people. I am however considering making future reel tables for sale Posted Image

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#8 of 11 Steve U

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Posted March 12 2001 - 07:30 AM

Great stuff, guys. I just got four 15" 35mm film cans I plan to make into tables, one on top, one on bottom, oak dowel/post between. Picked them up on eBay for $7 each. Pics will be up when I get there, but I'm only on the sheetrock...

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#9 of 11 David Tolsky

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Posted March 12 2001 - 07:38 AM

Guys, if it's film CANS you want, thoses I can get plenty of, even the 2000' ones because I work on a tv show that shoots film. If you pay the shipping I'll get you some. Shouldn't be a problem. We're talking about film containers right? The kind that holds raw stock from Eastman Kodak?

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#10 of 11 gregstaten

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Posted March 12 2001 - 08:13 AM

You can pick up 35mm film reels from any reputable movie theater supply company. Just about every single metal reel is made by a company called Goldberg Bros., located in Denver.

I got my reels out of their LA warehouse (through industry contacts). They don't sell directly to the public, though.

-greg


#11 of 11 James Mudler

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Posted March 15 2001 - 12:54 PM

David I completely agree with you. A woodshop and home theather go hand and hand. I have built the space above my garage into a home theather. My friends and family are totally impressed (I am too). I picked up alot of creativitly from car audio (built 3 world champion cars). I can not justify spending $$ on stuff I can build with a little time.

As for the reels, I picked up some rope lights at Costco (Sams has them too) for asile lights and the lights came in a reel that looks very similar to 35mm reels. Made of plastic. $10 with lights.

Hope it helps

James

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