Covering a window to mount screen

Discussion in 'Home Theater Projects' started by JakeCo, May 21, 2003.

  1. JakeCo

    JakeCo Agent

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    Here is my perdicament: I need to cover a window in order to mount my screen. The screen is a 4'x8' sheet of formica somehow (haven't done it yet) adhered to a 3/4" peice of plywood. Behind the plywood I will "frame out" with 2x4's to bring it over the window and off the wall. How should I go about this? Do you have any suggestions on how to accomplish this? Thanks.
     
  2. MikeWh

    MikeWh Second Unit

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    I'm guessing you'll have to use the 3-1/2" thickness of the 2x4s to clear the window sill. The one problem I have is whether it needs to be removable-- for emergency egress or for whatever reason. It's very easy to construct a frame that is simply bolted in.... If you need to remove the screen, then you can use brackets to hang the frame on the wall.

    Give us an idea of what you need to do, then we can go further.
     
  3. JakeCo

    JakeCo Agent

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    I guess that it would have to be removable somewhat. What I mean by that is, that it can't be totally permenant, like a wall. What do you suggest for 1) adhering the formica to the plywood once it's been painted (using the Goo system)? and 2) mounting it to the wall?
     
  4. Scooter

    Scooter Screenwriter

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    First of all...I would imagine the formica would give you a "hot spot" when being projected upon.

    I had a similar problem and I simply sheet rocked the whole wall..and painted on the screen. Works like a chatm.
     
  5. MikeWh

    MikeWh Second Unit

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    Jake-- I'd suggest using a french cleat to hang the frame above the window. Since 2x4s and plywood are prone to warping; you could have some potential problems down the road. I'd suggest after hanging it, place 2 L-brackets (angle irons) along the bottom edge, screwed into studs.
    See if this makes sense: http://home.earthlink.net/~sushinut/screenframe.gif

    Hot spotting (Scooter's post) is a major concern with surfaces that have higher sheen and/or are extremely smooth. If you still decide to go this route (there are many posts on DIY screens here and at AVSForum), then I would construct the frame, screw/glue the plywood to the frame (inset screws), and then adhere the formica to the plywood. Then paint last.

    Another option (likely cheaper and easier, too)-- you can make a much lighter screen by stretching a canvas (or having a craft store stretch one for you). Black out the window with project board or some other completely opaque material. Then simply hang the canvas from little brackets made by small pieces of 2x4s or angle irons... so that it comes out past the window casing.
    http://home.earthlink.net/~sushinut/stretched.gif
    I'm not sure if the grey screws in the drawing can be placed at those positions to screw the frame to the L-brackets... you'd have to check that out or come up with an alternate way of afixing the frame to the L-brackets.

    My father-in-law's screen is a stretched/painted screen and looks great. I will probably be going this route myself.
     
  6. JakeCo

    JakeCo Agent

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    I guess I should have said that I plan on painting the formica with Goo Digital Gray basecoat and topcoat. Do you think that would solve the hotspotting issue with formica?
     
  7. MikeWh

    MikeWh Second Unit

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    Jake-- I see you have been in some other threads with Niel Joseph on the subject. He says he didn't have troubles with hotspotting, so at least you know it's not always a problem with Formica. There are several factors (lumens, ambient light control, screen gain, surface sheen, etc.) which effect the intensity of hotspotting, so your experience may be different from that of others.

    Maybe Scooter can elaborate on his experience.
     
  8. JakeCo

    JakeCo Agent

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    I should have also added that the pj I will be using will either be the Sanyo Z1 or the Panny 300. The screen will be about 96" diag. 16:9.
     
  9. Neil Joseph

    Neil Joseph Lead Actor

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  10. Scooter

    Scooter Screenwriter

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    The whole thing I did was pretty simple really. Just ran sheet rock across that whole wall...including over the window. I then did two coats of cheap primer amd 2 coats of cheap flat ceiling white. Flat ceiling white is a bit more reflective that basic white and being "flat" is non-glossy..thus avoiding hot spots. I projected the image on the surface..outlined the edge of the image with masking tape on the inside of the image and painted the surrounding area with cheap black paint. Every coupla years I repaint the screen surface due to dust and cigarette smoke.

    I think if you ask anyone who has seen my setup in person will tell you the results are quite nice.
     
  11. JakeCo

    JakeCo Agent

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    How did you mount the sheet rock to the wall and over the window?
     
  12. JakeCo

    JakeCo Agent

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    Scooter, when you say sheet rock, are you talking about drywall? What do you think about this, using a 4' x 8' sheet of drywall as a screen. I would prime in with latex primer and then paint the digital gray goo basecoat and topcoat on it, frame it out with black-painted oak or some other hard wood (how big should I frame it with the wood?) and then build a frame behind it so that it clears the window? What do you think?
     
  13. Pam W

    Pam W Stunt Coordinator

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    sheetrock = drywall

    Happy Memorial Day!

    pam[​IMG]
     
  14. Scooter

    Scooter Screenwriter

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    Pam nailed it!

    As for construction, I had my nephew do that. He and I DID decide it was best to simply do the whole length of the wall rather than just where the window was. So as to actual mounting and all...I can't answer you accurately.
     

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