Sunday, December 02, 2007

Mancave Progress Report

I have reached my goal of completing the basics of the room by Thanksgiving. I had already finished the painting before my last post. The next step was to install the flooring. My plan is twofold: reduce bass resonance from the floor which is completely unsupported and keep sound out of the living room below. I accomplished this with 3 different material layers. First, a heavy plastic layer to create an air barrier and protect the nice hardwood floor from the next layer, rock board. I had originally thought I'd use sheetrock but when I saw the rockboard, I went for that. It's far heavier and denser than sheetrock. It's designed to be used as the walls in a bathroom. It comes in 3 x 5 sheets. You'll want a friend to help you get it home, each sheet weighs about 40 pounds! It's easily scored and broken to be fit into place. For the cuts around the radiator feet, I used a masonry wheel on my circular saw. On top of the rock board went a layer of OSB plywood. This is to keep furniture feet from crumbling the rockboard through the carpet. I finished off with carpet and pad. Below, you can see the layers. This edge is by the door into the room. I'll be trimming it with wood before the room's done.

My next task was the accoustical treatments. I did a fair amount of research on this subject. There are many companies that sell panels in every shape and size but they aren't cheap. I decided to build my own. I bought my material from ATS Accoustics. They sell all the raw materials you'll need. I got 2 cases of Roxul Rockboard 60 (6, 2 x 4 foot sheets per case). This material is rigid and reasonably lightweight yet very dense. It has a density of 6 pounds per cubic foot. It's comparable to Owens-Corning 705 but about half the cost. I also got 15 yards of burlap and some 3M spray adhesive. The panels were pretty easy to make. I cut 8, 2 x 2 foot pieces for the walls. The material cuts very easily with a sharp kitchen knife. The burlap just glues on and wraps around the back. I didn't use any frames. I hung them on the wall with a few screws to cradle them. You can't attach anything to the Roxul itself, it's too fragile. The screws are under the corners of each diamond shape.

As you can see in the photos, I also covered the windows. The panels fit in via friction. No hardware was required. I put a large enough panel on the bottom of each window that if I wish to install a window AC unit, I can just remove the panel. Once I had the window panels in place, the room really sounded great. It's quite something to just stand in the room and talk. I feel like I have a new piece of gear. I can't wait to have electronics in there!

My recliners are on the way from the Theater Seat Store. I went for the Charlize model. There will be 2 chairs with a common center armrest, black leather of course. I've also got the hardware I need to build a 36-inch flexi-rack. You can see a great article about that here. Thanks to Jeremy Brown for his great article, pics and most importantly, McMaster-Carr part numbers! I will have pics and articles about all the upcoming builds; the flexi-rack, plasma stand and surround speaker stands. Also, stay tuned for gear and lighting updates. Panasonic has just come out with a new commercial plasma that I have my eye on. I'm also still waiting for that Samsung Duo player. The latest rumors have shipping January 15th. My lighting will consist of some floor standing fixtures and an Ideal-Lume bias light behind the TV from Cinema Quest.
Lastly, I am now a Lumagen dealer so one of their fine products will be going in this room. A complete review will be coming soon. Please stay tuned for all updates. Thanks for reading and enjoy the view!


Ornery's Wife said...

I am curious about your previous post's statement that you plan to build a cover over the radiator. Do you not need it to heat the room?

Your mancave looks pretty awesome. You would shudder at the lack of our viewing equipment (which we rarely use), and probably our antiquated stereo, too. We've had it for over 20 years, but since it still works (and would blow the windows out if we turned it full blast) we are content.

Am enjoying reading your progress, and congrats on making Authorblog's blog of note today.

Chris Eberle/Precision Video said...

Thanks for your compliments. The radiator cover will have a metal screen in front so it will not decrease the function of the radiator at all. I have covers on all my radiators and they heat very well.

david mcmahon said...

G'day Chris,

Looking good so far. Yes, in response to your comment, I'm happy to exchange blog links ...

Take care