A big part of Menegroth is entertainment: TV, videos, games, exercise, internet, etc. Obviously a centerpiece is the home theater. We decided straight off that top priority in what we wanted was something comfortable and casual. No theater seating! We also wanted to go big – big screen, big sound, go for it!
Getting the Screen Wall Prepared
We’re putting in a screen that is 106″ – that’s big. We’ll get a projector for the picture. On the projector wall we’ve decided on some cabinets, shelves, and a fixed screen. We did look at an electric screen, but it was pretty expensive. A fixed mount screen gives a better picture and I bet after a few times you always leave the electric one down anyway. We are also going to put stone on the wall, so we can save some bucks by having a fixed screen – no stone behind the screen.
The wall is all prepped so really where we need to start is figuring out how to mount the screen. Our screen is from Severtson – made in the USA! We want the screen mounted and surrounded by stone – so that’s a bit tricky. The screen is covered in black velvet so it will get dirty incredibly easily. The wall is all prepped with the backer board and shelves and all.
The screen comes with two brackets that hook on the extruded aluminum frame. So I’ll need to mount the brackets, catching on some studs after drilling thru the backer board and sheetrock. Oh yeah and it has to be level.
Protecting the Screen
At $1500 (approximately) I’d really not like to get a big blob of goo on it or a bunch of stone dust. To get the stone work close the frame needs to be on the wall I think. The decision: mount it and protect it. First decision: you can assemble and mount without the screen material in the screen. This is key! Then it was a simple idea to wrap the frame parts in plastic dropcloth and spray glue it. I could then slice it open in the back to get it on the brackets for testing and then seal it back up.
You can see here, I did also have a cardoard template that I made to pre-measure everything on the wall. This is also a great way to make sure things will look ok. I had this screwed to the wall so that I could see dimensions and really how things would look.
In the shot to the left you can see the frame wrapped, the brackets, and the slits. After I test the placement and function of the brackets, I’ll re-seal these and put the fully protected screen frame up on the wall.
Mounting the Brackets
The brackets are about 50 inches long with a ton of holes. Its nice because all you need to do is get it level and not worry about anything else. The screen can slide a bit to make sure it is centered. It was a bit tricky to get it level – to be absolutely sure I did pre-drill the holes and also used 3.5″ stainless steel screws to catch the studs. I think that should work 🙂
The math on getting the lower bracket installed at the right height is the most important thing. There are a couple of clips that need to catch correctly. Your measurements need to be within 1/16″ of accurate or it will not work right. We’ll have to see if I did it right.
I think I’ve got the screen installed and most importantly it looks level. Whoo-hoo!
With that out of the way the stone can go in. We’ll see how that goes. The rest of the theater components will be installed after everything else is done. The concept with the screen on the wall during the stone application was spot on. This allowed for close placement and getting the look just right.
The stone is from Boral – yeah its cultured stone. Real stone is $$$$ – too much for us as we are already over budget. In general the stone concepts I had originally considered were just going to bust the bank. We cut back quite a bit on the stone, but by going with cultured stone we could still have a nice looking effect. I really like it. It also turned out that because of the sizing, real stone would not have worked as easily and would have taken a long number of hours to shape and cut the stone. With what we did using a thick black mortar given the stone a dry stacked look as well, which I had not originally considered.
Here’s another shot showing how the speaker wires come out thru gaps in the stone.