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Sound proof curtains.


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#1 of 37 Fernalfer

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Posted April 29 2008 - 01:48 AM

Does anyone know where i can find blackout sound proof curtains? my room has a rear, side and front wall, but the right side is open to where the kids play area is.

I wanted to run a curtain from the front wall to the back wall on the right side to close the room off. but also wanted it to be blackout and as sound proof as can be.

Does anyone know where i can get such an item?

#2 of 37 Robert_J

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Posted April 29 2008 - 05:31 AM

The blackout portion is easy. Any curtain lined with blackout cloth will work. Blackout or curtain liner is available at any fabric store for around $8 yard (last time I looked). There is no "soundproof" curtain. No such thing. We have enough trouble convincing people to use multiple layers of drywall to just reduce the sound. Sound is reduced/stopped by mass. So a curtain that could do that would need to weigh as much as a wall.

-Robert

#3 of 37 luckytiff02

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Posted May 02 2008 - 03:00 AM

There are noise reducing curtains at Bed Bath and Beyond for a reasonable price. The brand name is Eclipse.

#4 of 37 Robert_J

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Posted May 02 2008 - 06:41 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by luckytiff02
There are noise reducing curtains at Bed Bath and Beyond for a reasonable price. The brand name is Eclipse.
The key word is reducing. Do they come with technical specs as to how much sound is reduced by frequency?

-Robert

#5 of 37 Micah Cohen

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Posted August 27 2008 - 02:38 AM

I'm bumping this thread because I'm tearing my hair out trying to find curtains to blackout my theater room windows and Eclipse curtains at BBB are crap. They are not even lined. They let light thru completely, and don't do anything for sound.

I've been around and around with the company that makes them, and they seem unaware that without "a lining" the Eclipse at BBB are basically "sheer."

This same company also has a product called Eclipse ThermaBack, available at Walmart. It is a thicker, lined curtain. One style is a faux suede, which seems to be the ticket. (But, I need BLACK curtains, and for some insensible reason finding a black blackout curtain is very difficult. Plus, I'm loathe to work with this company because they strike me as sort of undeserving of my money after my dealings with their BBB product...)

Linens-n-Things has Solaris-brand lined curtains, in black! But, they come in two-packs of two 27" wide curtains... I'd need four of these to do one of my two windows. Why doesn't anyone make a normal 54" wide panel of blackout curtains?

Home Depot and Lowes have Roc-Lon brand (white vinyl) blackout LINERS, which you'd have to sew into or onto another curtain.

Meanwhile, having someone custom make me insulated blackout curtains for light and sound could run me $800. For goodness sakes.

Any advice, product endorsement or suggestion, for sound and light blocking curtains would be appreciated.

ARG!

MC
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#6 of 37 Robert_J

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Posted August 27 2008 - 04:07 AM

Find a nice old lady at one of the fabric stores to sew the blackout fabric onto the curtains that you want. Better yet, you do it. A decent sewing machine is about $200.

My curtains around the screen are as simple as can be. They were cut to length, hemmed at the bottom and a pocket sewn in the top to accept the bar. I'm going to add sound absorption panels behind the side curtains so that my mains will sound a little better.

The curtains over the window (right side of the picture) are constructed the exact same way but they are 3 layers thick. Layer 1 is what you see. Layer 2 is blackout fabric. Layer 3 is a sheer. Not sure why we needed that but my wife wanted it on all windows. The curtain rod is a triple model. Because of the weight, I did have to add a few braces but it wasn't that difficult.

I may the one of the most knowledgable straight men when it comes to curtains. Not because I wanted to learn but because I'm a cheap SOB. We have 6 arched windows in our great room on one in our master bath. Arched curtain rods were about $300 each! I built all 7 out of parts from Lowes electrical and plumbing departments for less than $100 total.

-Robert

-Robert
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#7 of 37 Micah Cohen

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Posted August 27 2008 - 06:17 AM

Grrrrr... I had a sewing machine once. Tried to teach myself to sew. Truth. My wife saw the seams I was sewing on my t-shirts ("Why is this thread all over the place?") and that was the end of that. I paid NINE DOLLARS for that sewing machine -- a Singer, with the manual and the peddle and all -- at a thrift store. And I brought it back to the thrift store when we moved and I didn't feel like packing it.

You think you're cheap? Forget it. I'm trying to do this on a shoestring. And that shoestring does not include having someone sew for me because I'm finding the labor costs are just stupid.

I can't tell you how frustrating it is just trying to find "black colored blackout curtains." Head-smashingly frustrating. A simple thing. Maybe I should make them myself and go into business!

Today's discovery: Solaris (at LinensNThings) is only "room darkening," not actually "black-outing." The package says a "black out" product is available, but it turns out to not be.

I'm waiting for the jahmokes at Eclipse to get back to me about the Thermaback product, which I can't find in black anywhere...

SIMPLE!

MC
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"There's nothing funny about a clown in the moonlight." - Lon Chaney

#8 of 37 MichaelBA

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Posted August 27 2008 - 09:07 AM

This sounds nutty! Black-out curtains are simply NOT available in these here United States?! How about just the drapes that hotels use to block out light? No? Micah's barking mad -- someone help him!
He's got the bit between his teeth... all right!

#9 of 37 Alfonso_M

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Posted August 27 2008 - 09:29 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by MichaelBA
This sounds nutty! Black-out curtains are simply NOT available in these here United States?! How about just the drapes that hotels use to block out light? No? Micah's barking mad -- someone help him!


Here, they are all out at the moment it seems, but if you don't mind about previously used Music Studio sound proofing curtains/drapes,(you can get them dry cleaned) keep an eye out for fresh stock here.

Acoustical Soundproofing Curtains, Drapes, Clear sheeting and Strip Doors

I bought three sound proofing drapes from them, almost as new, back in 2001, these drapes are 'doubled up' with a heavy lining material that blocks pretty much everything I needed to be blocked from my three HT's windows..

I've tested using a DB meter pumping my Sound System (four subs) at reference level, hardly a bleep on the meter at two feet away from the window's glass..my closest neighbor's window is at about 20', success!!!Posted Image

#10 of 37 Micah Cohen

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Posted August 27 2008 - 11:56 AM

BARK! BARK!

This is driving me barking mad!

That's a cool acoustic soundproofing site. Interesting stuff there. (When they have it in stock, I guess.)

I just got some emails from a nice woman at Eclipse (at the shipping facility in NC, not the brain-dead corporate offices in NYC) telling me where their products are distributed -- KMart, Sears, JC Penney. So I have to go find these Thermaback Eclipse Curtains tomorrow.

Another example of the simple, turned complex! BARK! BARK BARK!

Nuts!

MC
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"There's nothing funny about a clown in the moonlight." - Lon Chaney

#11 of 37 KASR

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Posted August 28 2008 - 02:31 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Micah Cohen
This same company also has a product called Eclipse ThermaBack, available at Walmart. It is a thicker, lined curtain. One style is a faux suede, which seems to be the ticket. (But, I need BLACK curtains, and for some insensible reason finding a black blackout curtain is very difficult. Plus, I'm loathe to work with this company because they strike me as sort of undeserving of my money after my dealings with their BBB product...)

I almost bought the same fake seude drapes at JcPenney's last night for a large window in my future theater room. They look pretty good, but I would think you'd need to line the other side with something alittle more substantial to keep more light out. Maybe some thin vinyl or something...

#12 of 37 KASR

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Posted August 28 2008 - 02:37 AM

I just had a thought....my wife works in the international sales department of a company that handles some vinyl sewn products....I wonder if I can take the drapes that I did buy and have them line the back of the drapes with a thin vinyl???? hmmmm....I'll keep you posted.

#13 of 37 Micah Cohen

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Posted August 28 2008 - 06:50 AM

Aaron, wait! I just came back from JCPenney, matter of fact, and NO, I do not think you would not have to sew anything onto the faux-suede curtains.

What you saw was called LINDEN SUEDE. Penney's has this, and a Linden Thermal. The "Thermal" one is fabric backed with a second (white) layer, and the fabric is available in black. (The suede is not.) Both types of curtains are quite reasonably priced, like $30 for a large panel, I think.

And both seem to be serious black-out curtains. I held them up to my eyes as if I was a hostage or something, and I could not see the bright store lights thru them.

I have to go back this evening with my wife to make the final approved selection, but this might be what I finally get.

Meanwhile, KMart stocks something made by Eclipse called Kent Stripe Thermaback, which is quite inexpensive, seems to block the light (when covering my eyes) and comes in a black fabric.

When I go later, I might bring a MagLight flashlight to put behind the fabric and test how much light might get thru.

Exhausting! But I feel like I'm getting closer.

MC
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"There's nothing funny about a clown in the moonlight." - Lon Chaney

#14 of 37 Micah Cohen

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Posted August 28 2008 - 06:52 AM

Quote:
my wife works in the international sales department of a company that handles some vinyl sewn products....I wonder if I can
...And I'm wondering if you and I don't produce true black-curtains on our own once and for all using this resource and market the crap out of them and make millions!

I'm sick of not being able to find what I need, this simple thing!

MC
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"There's nothing funny about a clown in the moonlight." - Lon Chaney

#15 of 37 KASR

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Posted August 28 2008 - 07:18 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Micah Cohen
...And I'm wondering if you and I don't produce true black-curtains on our own once and for all using this resource and market the crap out of them and make millions!

I'm sick of not being able to find what I need, this simple thing!

MC


LOL! Now you're talking!!! Those faux-seude ones from Penney's were pretty decent and decently priced (like you mentioned)...even those lined in a thin vinyl should do the trick and not be an eye-sore for the room!

#16 of 37 Micah Cohen

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Posted August 28 2008 - 01:40 PM

STAY TUNED.

My trip to Penney's (and etc) with my MAGLight flashlight was... um... ILLUMINATING. Tomorrow (Friday) I'll post my complete findings. (A preview: Don't believe ANY "Black Out" claims!)

MC
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"There's nothing funny about a clown in the moonlight." - Lon Chaney

#17 of 37 Micah Cohen

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Posted August 29 2008 - 06:21 AM

Ok, kiddies, gather round. Here's the absolute skinny on "black out" curtains. (Apologies for "hijacking" this thread, I think.)

Note 1: I needed black-colored blackout curtains for my theater room. I did not choose to use "blinds," or "roman shades," or any "layering" of multiple drapes using "blackout liners," like Roc-Lon Liners (which do work). These are other options, probably worth exploring. But I needed one certain thing (black blackout curtains) to match the room and block the light.

Note 2: Going shopping for blackout shades? Bring along your police-issue 3-cell MagLight. The bottom line is that if light from the MagLight gets thru the curtains (when you put the MagLight behind the curtains hanging in the store) then light from your windows will also.

Note 3: I am a very angry man.

There are basically three companies making "black out shades." The first is Roc-Lon, which makes commercial window treatments and consumer-level blackout liners, which are used in conjunction with an "over drape." You can use a white Roc-Lon liner, which costs about $25 per panel, behind any color drape or curtain. I will be ignoring this option for the purpose of this email, as noted above. The second company is Ellery Homestyles, based in NY. At the moment, I hate this company. But let me say that they have multiple brands and types of "black out" curtains under the brand name "Eclipse," available in most consumer homeware stores. We'll get back to Ellery in a moment. The third company is Springs, based in NC, which makes "Solaris" brand "black out" curtains, available in Linens-N-Things. There are other store-brands, such as Linden at JCPenney.

First, you need to know that no fabric-based "black out" curtain works, at all. Solaris Portland doesn't work. Eclipse anything doesn't work. (And Penney's Linden brand fabric based curtains also do not work.) Put your MagLight behind them (when you're shopping in the store) and you'll plainly see: even tho they all scream "Blocks 99% of light! Black out light for a good night's sleep even during the day!" ... they are all lying.

Each of these two main curtain brands (and some store brands) does make a "faux suede" curtain in limited colors. These curtains are very thick and heavy, almost like "microfiber," and do block a certain amount of light successfully. Use your MagLight if you are considering these materials. I did not want these kinds of curtains because they were not available in the color I needed.

Why I am so angry at the moment. Two months ago I bought Ellery's Eclipse Amanda curtain at my local BedBathBeyond. Package copy says boldly: "Blocks all unwanted light... Sleep in complete darkness any time of day... Blocks out over 99% of light... In laboratory testing, the Eclipse curtain blocked an average of 99.8% of light." (Seriously.) Yet, the curtain was basically sheer. Didn't block any light. I took pictures, wrote to the company. They were nice enough to say maybe something was wrong with the ones I bought, and they sent me a whole new set! But, the set they sent as a replacement was the same exact product, which did not block any light at all. I took more pictures, I wrote back to the company, and... they stopped helping me. Finally, I got a nice customer service woman on the phone at the company's NC shipping facility who told me, lo and behold, Ellery also makes MORE TYPES of black out curtains, with cool names like ThermaWeave and ThermaBack, and they are available under these names in other stores! They even have a complete separate website for these brandier brands! (So, um, why didn't the head office in NY tell me this?)

So, in spite, here's a rundown of Ellery's "Eclipse" black out curtain brands and their effectiveness, or lack thereof:

- Eclipse, available at BedBathBeyond for $40 per panel. Useless, practically sheer. Take them back.
- ThermaBack/ThermaWeave, available at WalMart, KMart, Sears. More interesting than the plain fabric curtains available under the basic "Eclipse" name, but just as useless, and all practically sheer. Avoid them.
- ThermaLiner, also at Wal-K-SearsMart, is, in fairness, a Roc-Lon-type vinyl liner; it does block the light, as its package claims. But it's a white vinyl liner, needs a curtain over it.
- Eclipse Triple Weave, also at Wal-K-SearsMart, sheer according to the MagLight test.

So, what can you buy to block the light? Unfortunately, the only true non-layered, non-suede light-blocking blackout curtain available in fashion colors (like the "black" I needed) is an Ellery brand of Eclipse curtain only available at... JCPenney. It's called the Robert Eclipse, and the only reason I know about it is because a nice woman at Ellery's shipping facility mentioned it; the guys at Ellery HQ in NY obviously do not want to sell much stuff. I mean, why have multiple types of curtains that all claim to "block 99% of light," when none of them do except ONE?

I went to JCPenney, and put the MagLight on it, and the Robert Eclipse curtain in black BLOCKED THE FRIGGING LIGHT COMPLETELY. I brought it home, hung it next to the Eclipse Amanda, took a picture of it blocking the light (next to the light streaming in from the "Eclipse" Amanda), and I am about to send an angry email to the guys at Ellery that asks, among other things, "Why did't you tell me about the product -- YOUR PRODUCT -- that actually works... months ago in the first place?"

If I knew how to post images to this thread, I'd lay it out for you. Only the Robert Eclipse, by (yech!) Ellery Homestyles, available at JCPenney, actually blocks the light like a real black out curtain!

So there. Months of heartache and hard work condensed into a little thread posting.

[Micah collapses on floor, but at least his theater is dark and quiet now.]

MC
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"There's nothing funny about a clown in the moonlight." - Lon Chaney

#18 of 37 KASR

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Posted August 29 2008 - 09:58 AM

You're a soulja Micah!!!

#19 of 37 jamminsport16

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Posted August 31 2008 - 07:53 AM

lol wha?Posted Image

#20 of 37 shaknwitu

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Posted October 01 2008 - 06:17 AM

My question for Micah and everyone else is: Which of these darker curtains kept out the most sound? I found your thread looking for ideas on normal looking curtains I can put over a window to keep out sound (mainly traffic noise from San Francisco of cars going over cable car tracks).

I need something dark to keep some light out, but the most important thing I am looking for is ability to block out noise (while still looking like a normal window curtain).

Any suggestions?


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