Chimney down, plasma up! Well pleased!

Discussion in 'Home Cinema Building DIY' started by koonl, Jan 24, 2008.

  1. koonl

    koonl
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    Ever since moving into our home December 06, I've always wanted to remove that hideous fireplace. Well now that's down, I started piping in hundreds of metres of cabling around the home (from the cabling left over, I calculated approx 650m of Cat5, WF100, RG59 for CCTV and 6-core alarm cabling!), in walls and under floorboards. After months of pain and labour, and nagging from the missus and mother-in-law, the plasma is finally up!

    1 Chimney Panoramic.jpg 2 Chimney.JPG 3 Chimney down.JPG

    Being Polish, my missus and her mum needed Polish satellite, and I have an 80cm dish with a quad monobloc LNB, one of the outputs feeds into a Philex distribution amp along with freeview, radio and CCTV inputs. The output drops down two levels to the living room along with Cat5, and then under the floorboard to the plasma position. This will enable several services to be viewed in the living room before returning the signals back to the distribution box and then distributed to the bedrooms.

    I've also dropped two extra cables incase I ever go back to Sky (running Freeview at the moment). There is also another extra cable for Free-to-Air or Freesat. All these cables go into a Triax Quadplexed wallplate or Philex modular wallplate system.

    Loft.JPG

    All the cables were boxed in with MDF in the corner of the room, and an "access" hole cut covered with a blanking plate. I've cut a whole for the sub cable that feeds all the way from the plasma position.

    The living room was plastered by a Polish guy who was flown over from Poland to do a job at a friends house, working 12 hours day with only two food breajs (14 hour day in one case) for little money, he plastered the whole house with Lafarge Easy Finish plaster. This is much harder wearing than Thistle stuff in my opinion, it needs two coats and then hand sanding when dried. It's worth sourcing a plaster from Poland and flying him over by EasyJet and still save pennies.

    4 FLooring down.JPG

    Once the plasma positioning and outlet points were finalised, it was time to get the SDS out! This was fairly straightforward and I used skirting trunking from B&Q for the main conduit from Plasma to AV units. Looking through the trunking, you can see that it's divided into three sections, but I just cut these out for a whole cavity to avoid cable snagging. The plasma bracket was from AVS, this is a beauty of a bracket if you are looking for one, easy to fit. I used Wickes M6 x 60 no problems into plaster/brickwork to fix the bracket in. All the cables were fed into the conduit, posed no real problem, didn't think that the Supra HF100 HDMI cable was that thick though! I've also piped in cables for the Ikea Dioder LEDs to give that Phillips "Chavlight" look.

    5 Wall chasing.JPG 6 Conduit and Barcket in.JPG

    Using Thistle Bonding Plaster to patch the conduits before finishing with Lafarge Easy Finish has left a super smooth finish that even a good plasterer would be proud of! It costs at least twice as much as Thistle plaster for less than half the pack (£13-£17/10kg) but it's easy to use and imperfections are sanded back when dry.

    7 Wall chase plastered.JPG

    I've set the TV to the bracket to the lowest position, to determine the lowest point, as I plan to get a new HD set and I know that I will have space to play around with on the existing bracket. The sub cable goes to the corner of the room behind the skirting, and the rear QED Micro cables go under the floor boards and chased to the rear of the room.

    8 Complete.JPG 9 Cable exit.JPG

    As the AV equipment will be in a cupboard, I will use Keene IR Distribution hub. The IR sensor is in a two gang wall socket bottom-right of the plasma. An existing two gang power outlet used to be there, this has been re-routed under the floorboards and to the bottom-left of the plasma as you can see in the pics. The cable from the IR sensor goes down the existing conduit and to the cable exit.

    10 Complete.JPG 11 Complete.JPG

    All that needs doings is to make good the skirting boards, and then feed all the cables into the side table that will sit under the plasma and "hey presto!"

    I will drop a few more pics when the equipment is in the side table and finally positioned under the plasma. But there is one problem at the moment, I bought the table from eBay, a lovely 35 year old piece, but the amp is too big to fit in! Just need to jigsaw a hole at the rear of the table to allow the rear of the amp to stick out a bit.

    Koonl
     
  2. Jasonjo

    Jasonjo
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    Looks good...:thumbsup:

    Looks very similar to what I am doing at the same moment...all this talk or PWD6 and QED micro cable, it sounds like we have very similar ideas/setups!

    I have been taking lots of piccies, but not put them together into a post yet. I am also a little behind you as I have only recently finished the channeling.

    Hopefully when I get around to it, you will see a lot of paralells with our ideas :cool:

    Cheers

    JJ

    P.S. Just a tip, it might look even nicer with the Panny grab handles removed...
     
  3. koonl

    koonl
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    Ah! Never thought about that! Can you take it off while it's still on the wall or do I have to take it off again to take the handles off?

    I'm the kind of person who wants to do things right now, I stayed up until nearly 2am this morning setting it all up, and decided to have a go at lifting the plasma myself onto the bracket. I'm 5'9" and 77kg, don't consider myself a strongman or in the building trade with plenty of strength, but I managed it without too much trouble. The wife was surprised to see it on the wall the following morning!

    I've got QED micros to the rear, but Silver Anniversary XT for the front and original Silver Anniversary for the centre. The PWD6 is a brilliant panel for SD material, and I have the twin board component input card. The settings and features are way beyond most plasmas in the consumer market which makes this a very versatile panel. It's not HD, but it will do for now until the feature lists (24spf/1080i and all that jazz) settle down and the costs come down.

    I strongly advise to make sure that if you use bonding plaster to cover the conduit to leave a few mm to allow for the finish coat, otherwise you end up with a "bump". I made that mistake first and had to scrape the bonding back a bit. And also not to trowel too much bonding on the surface either side of the channel, as this will only add unwanted depth once you finish over it. Just scrape is off before it hardens, or sand it right off if dried. If you can get Lafarge plaster I would recommend that, as it comes in smaller 10kg bags and is very easy to work with, needs to be like a "whippy ice cream" consistency, and is very forgiving and trowel marks are easily sanded down afterwards.

    Good luck, and I hope to see some of your pics.
     
  4. Jasonjo

    Jasonjo
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    I think you can get them off with a right angled philips screwdriver, but it is much easier to do with the plasma off the wall - you will then need some help getting it on the bracket though as you will need to lift it using the side panels.

    As we are having some other work done in our garage conversion, I have kindly asked one of the guys to do a bit of "ad-hoc plastering" in the lounge for the final finish coat to get a good looking finish :D :smashin:

    Lazy, but handy! :)

    Will post my own upgrade story in due course...

    Cheers

    JJ
     

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