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The Loft -> Home Cinema.

Discussion in 'Home Cinema Building DIY' started by RimBlock, Apr 7, 2003.

  1. RimBlock

    RimBlock
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    Hi,

    Just thought I would add my experiences to date and hopefully update this week.

    First point to note is that this has been done on a very limited budget and second point is that the flat is rented.

    Right brief overview.

    Flat is top floor of a double fronted house with access to the loft.

    The loft is around 4 metres wide and 10 metres long (walkable area) with 4 sets of diagonal beams coming to floor level in the center of the loft.

    First idea, make it walkable without worrying about falling through the ceiling and to give me a place for some gym equipment.

    Off to B&Q and bought some loft flooring (chipboard). Cut it in and fitted (screwed down - with thanks to the inventer of the electric screwdriver). Bought a box of 400 3" screws for the task rather than the loft screws as it worked out much cheaper.

    The idea gets expanded;

    Having just upgraded my AV reciever and dvd player I had both sitting around doing nothing so bought a pine shelf and some 1"x1" wood lengths and set about building a 1ft high table for them. That done popped down to Hyperfi and bought some Whalfdale speekers for the setup and now I had music up there but still had the problem with dust and crap from the beams falling on everything. B&Q to the rescue again. Hessian dust sheets (£12 each). Few sheets of hardboard cut into 1.5" strips and used to secure the cloth to the rafters and the end walls. Superb, no more dust but no light or power either. Wired a consumer unit with 3 fuses (two for power, left and right of the unit which is central to the loft and one for lights). 3 fluorescent lights later and I can see what I am doing.

    Ok now to get comfortable, carpet. Looking at offcuts and there was just nothing of the right size (as you may expect) but then we got to the floor tile section. Oh dear, three boxes of floor tiles later and not two and a bit sections are tiles. Covered half of the diagonal braces with the same dust sheet material.

    Warped again;

    After trawling the internet and seeing various sites with cheapish projectors (second hand or ex-demo) I found the diyaudio site with information on building your own projector (don't laugh too hard :D ). Well after spending £4500 on my new AV gear there was no way my wife would go for another big expense so being able to build a reasonable lcd projector which is easy to maintain and modify seemed like a godsend.

    One trip to ebay later with a OHP projector and 15" 1024x768 true colour LCD later and I am just waiting for them to arrive (grand total under £200).

    Grand total spent around £700 (inc £200 for the projector parts).

    Lessions learnt;

    The loft flooring boards have differing amounts of glue in them and one pack I bought was noteable darker and harder to screw holes into (the nail gun had issues trying to get nails into it).

    Now I just have to try and get some material for a screen and work out a way to hang it at one end of the loft.

    Hopefully this will get to a stage with a working projector by the end of the week. I will try and take some pics and update.

    Cheep and chearfull it maybe but the wife even approves and it can all be taken down again (excliding the flooring which will probably be left) if we decide to move on.

    Now a seperate thread on screen material :) .

    Thanks for endulging.
    Rb
     
  2. Gary Lightfoot

    Gary Lightfoot
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    I did something similar to my loft, except I strengthened the flooring because the 'floor' joists of the loft are smaller than the floor joists of the upstairs and downstairs (6"x2" instead of 4"x2").

    Pics on my web site if you're interested, including my DIY screen using blackout cloth.

    Gary.
     
  3. RimBlock

    RimBlock
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    Just found out that Argos do a blackout blind for £16 which is almost exactly the right size. Will pop down there when (if) my LCD screen arrives today.

    Cheers
    Rb
     
  4. RimBlock

    RimBlock
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    Gary,

    Yep my loft is the same shape but smaller at around 7ft high at the roof apex (unless you are very short :D ).

    My only problem is that as the loft isn't sealed I still have the risk of getting corrosion within the bits I put up there hence my Cyrus gear will remain in our front room. Maybe when I buy a place I will do this properly.

    Cheers
    Rb
     

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