Very easy, fool-proof "hot swappable" screen frame? - Page 2 - Home Theater Forum and Systems - HomeTheaterShack.com

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post #11 of 36 Old 01-25-12, 07:27 PM
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Don
 
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Re: Very easy, fool-proof "hot swappable" screen frame?

Your laminate questions are better answered by those that have used it. I'm hoping Mech or Wbassett or someone else with actual experience with laminates will pop in here and be able to give you authoritative answers. All I have seen are the little sample pieces of WilsonArt laminate you can pick up at the dealers and those already have a hardboard backer on them.

The WilsonArt laminate (and I assume other brands as well) that comes in rolls is thin and fragile. Some people have even had it crack while trying to unroll it. Once you get it glued (not screwed) to a firm substrate breakage isn't as near as much of a problem.

Another problem with laminates is that IIRC they were not designed as projection screens and the surface gloss from sheet to sheet can vary meaning some sheets will hot spot and some won't. The Fashion Gray you mention usually hot spots from what I have read; this is because it's easier to see hot spotting on a gray screen compared to a white screen.

The mirror clip idea might work, but not with a flimsy type laminate; I would expect that type of material to pucker, and possibly break, around the clips. We keep coming back to needing some type of firm substrate to resist bending and puckering.

I like your Can-Do attitude and your idea of a swappable screen system; and being an ex-Navy man, Wbassett is all about KISS solutions (note the ease of making our Black Widow™ screen mix - that wasn't by accident ).

I believe you are on the right track thinking about preformed aluminum to build a frame with, the problem is finding the proper shape, and finding it at anywhere near a price the "normal" DIY'er can afford.
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post #12 of 36 Old 01-25-12, 08:22 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Very easy, fool-proof "hot swappable" screen frame?

Harpmaker and Kalani,

Wow! Thanks guys for the timely responses. Yeah, I'm a man on a mission. lol I guess to clarify/summarize my goal, it's this:

1. Simple frame on wall that allows easy slide-in/slide-out of laminate sheets (whether painted or not).
This doesn't necessarily have to be super duper simple to make as long as it provides the
"hot-swap" flexibility. And...


2. Be able to show this to my friends and people online looking for something easy.
So, I'm looking for a fairly generic, boring, universal approach. Nothing fancy-pants or super custom.


I suspect that there are a lot of people that try something DIYish first, get in over their heads, and then give in and buy a mfg screen. I think they probably made the same mistake I did and underestimate the extensiveness and involvement of the project they set out to do. Just using laminate, I believe, will take out a lot of this hassle. And, a simple, "hot-swappable" solution will relieve the need of permanence ("oh no! I'm stuck with this for a while if I don't like it!") So, if I can break the laws of physics with my Jedi mind tricks and make it do what I want it to do, I can help out some other people to not get intimidated by all the Tim the Toolman Taylor stuff.

Thank you guys for your help. Yes! If wbassett can pop in and give me the lowdown on this stuff, that would be great. He mentioned in the laminate thread that some people have used mirror clips or just nailed it to the wall. But, I'm not sure if he knows if they did this successfully or not, and if it remained a successful option over the long term. Sorry about rambling! I'm just excited about laminate.
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post #13 of 36 Old 01-25-12, 09:36 PM
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Re: Very easy, fool-proof "hot swappable" screen frame?

The easiest way would be to use an extruded aluminum frame system with a track or slot pre-cut into the pieces. Then the laminate could be slid in and out but it most likely will have some flex to it.

"Make everything as simple as possible, but no simpler." - Albert Einstein

"If all else fails, spin the cat."- Grzboken
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post #14 of 36 Old 01-26-12, 08:27 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Very easy, fool-proof "hot swappable" screen frame?

Hello Mr. Bill! Thank you for your input! Thank you everybody, for your input!


I work in a factory doing a repetitive job, so it gives me a lot of time to think.

I think I may go back to the Sintra/PVC foam board idea that I began on. I can't help but think that the laminate would be more involved than I originally anticipated. I think making the journey to score some Sintra would be worth it. And, what little I know about Sintra, it does sound pretty forgiving and newb-friendly. Thanks guys, again, for your help! Time to switch gears... unless you have any words of wisdom/warning/caveats about Sintra? Thanks.
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post #15 of 36 Old 01-26-12, 10:20 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Very easy, fool-proof "hot swappable" screen frame?

Yep. Replying to me again. :P


How about mirror clips with a piece of Sintra? Sintra has a rigidness to it, doesn't it? So, one could simply
pull the Sintra out of the clips, turn it around, and put it back in? (I'm pretty hooked on the 2 sides idea in case you haven't noticed.) I'm also thinking about a very simple, black, rectangular frame that you basically hang around it. You could just pull this straight off, then pull the screen out, flip it around, and put the rectangle back. Maybe there's an even easier way. Hmmm.. I'll be thinking about this.
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post #16 of 36 Old 01-26-12, 12:06 PM
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Re: Very easy, fool-proof "hot swappable" screen frame?

Sintra is designed to be painted so the raw sheets may have slightly different gloss levels with some hot spotting and some not. While Sintra is not fragile it is a relatively soft plastic and can scuff and gouge from rough handling. When getting sheets for a screen be sure to examine both sides for damage, and take care in transporting.
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post #17 of 36 Old 01-26-12, 06:14 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Very easy, fool-proof "hot swappable" screen frame?

Thanks! Will do.
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post #18 of 36 Old 01-26-12, 07:34 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Very easy, fool-proof "hot swappable" screen frame?

Guys, if I'm getting on your nerves, you just ignore me anytime. But I love you guys for not ignoring me! I will figure this out. I'm like Rocky Balboa in Rocky IV running up the mountain to the cheesy 80's music. I'm going to distance. lol Sorry..


Here is my next idea I think might be the ticket:


Assumption: We are working with a fairly stiff substrate such as 6mm Sintra (is this actually pretty stiff?)


Design:

-4 metal angle brackets along the bottom of the screen, supporting some weight from the bottom.
-Magnets are attached to the screen just behind the border to attract the screen itself back against the metal angle brackets.
-4 metal plates attached to the wall just behind the upper border of the screen. The screen attracted to these with magnets along the top.
-1 screw through the center top for security. And maybe 1 screw through the center bottom as well.
-Optional: 2 metal plates (one on each side), halfway down the screen behind the border. Attracted by magnets as well.



Any of you pros have any gut feelings on this direction? What I don't know is just how flimsy or strong Sintra is. I guess I won't know until I get it. I also don't have a sense of heaviness, but I'm sure if a french cleat can hold something at the top, a metal shelf can support something at the bottom. (?)

With magnets, you just pull the screen away, flip it, and set it right back. You can have a 2-sided screen for when one prefers Black Widow, and the other prefers Sugar&Cream.

-Jon


P.S. Could this possibly be a laminate solution as well? Magnets with some bottom support?

Edit: This post has gone through a series of edits. I apologize if you have read between edits. lol

Last edited by j0nnyfive; 01-26-12 at 09:27 PM.
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post #19 of 36 Old 01-26-12, 09:46 PM
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Re: Very easy, fool-proof "hot swappable" screen frame?

While I have never seen a large sheet of Sintra the 6 mm material is said to be self-supporting meaning it will support it's own weight without sagging or bending (much like a piece of 1/4" plywood). The 3 mm material needs support from a frame.

For general info on Sintra read this. The weight of the 1 mm thru 6 mm material is about half the weight of solid PVC.

I would expect any 1/4" sheet of material could be used with the support system you described above.

One of the really cool things about doing a DIY screen is that you are only limited by your own ability to create what you want. The problem is that so many folk design and build their screens and then don't share that knowledge so others can gain from it as well.
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post #20 of 36 Old 01-27-12, 10:00 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Very easy, fool-proof "hot swappable" screen frame?

Hey Harpmaker!


I want to share share share! I think I am going the Sintra direction, definitely. Laminate is nice, and while some of it might be cheaper than Sintra, I think Sintra fits my "screens for dummies" criteria a bit better. I like the whole "self-supporting" and "never warping" thing, definitely definitely.

Okay. I just got back from Lowes and I found these tiny little corner braces that I think may be PERFECT for the job. They...

a. are cheap ($1.77 for a package of 4)
b. require only one screw a piece
c. prevent lateral movement
d. love magnets!
e. and they are small, lightweight, yet strong!

I couldn't ask for something better.


Now, I need to know something. Do you have any experience with Gorilla Glue? I'm wanting to adhere the little magnets to the border areas of the Sintra itself. I'm wondering how glue ages, and if there is a better way of accomplishing what I'm trying to do. (Stick the Sintra to the wall magnetically). I was looking for small metal "u channel" pieces that I could slip over the top of the screen so I wouldn't need to use glue. But should I fear glue? Is glue my friend?

Also, I love the look of black velvet. But, when we tried to cut our triple black velvet from Sy's, we found it difficult to cut straight. lol Is there a really nice black velvet -looking tape out there that you guys really like? I'm wanting to create a 2 inch black border around the screen (this will also hide the magnets beneath it).

Thanks guys. I love this site (did I say that 10 times already?)

-Jon

Last edited by j0nnyfive; 01-27-12 at 10:17 AM.
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