Wednesday, January 29, 2014

My tryst with acoustic panels

Things you need (for 7 Panels)
1.   Ply wood – 12 mm – 6 ft X 4 ft = Rs. 900.00
2.   Labor charges to cut them into 3 inches slabs = Rs. 300.00
3.   Metal “L” clamps to make frame = 2” X 2” - 56 nos @ Rs. 5 each = Rs. 310.00
4.   Screws – “4 X 20” – CSK -  224 nos = Rs 200.00
5.   Fabric – behind the panels – 9 Meters @ Rs 40 per meter = Rs. 360.00
6.   Fabric  - Front panel – 11 meters @ Rs 100 per meter = Rs. 1100.00
7.   Small metal L clamps to make hanger = 14 nos @ Rs 5 each = Rs. 60.00
8.   Misc. nails and screws = Rs. 100.00
9.   Rock wool = 50mm thick – 64 Kg density = Rs. 2000.00 (inclusive of Rs. 500 – transportation)

Tools that you need
1.   Screw driver
2.   Drill with the right sized bits
3.   Hammer
4.   Scissors
5.   Measuring tape
6.   Pencil
7.   Safety equipment – pair of gloves and breathing mask
8.   Don’t remember, what else – but use your imagination J

Any forum you go to for home recording and if you do a word search, I am quite certain you get this phrase – “untreated room”.

And so the mitigation of this ‘untreated’ to “TREATED” J (sounds nice doesn't it). (At least some treatment)

And so I bagan in keeping with the wisdom of the “gurus”, to make some acoustic panels for my home studio.

After much searching, found one guy would sell one bag of Rock wool slabs and ship it also… and boy was I glad and so …..

First things first, why seven panels? The Rock wool slabs come in a bag of 14 and I figured that, since they are quite thin, double it and viola the magic number 7.

Home work- I looked at the videos and information in the web and they all talk about making panels out of wood (not ply wood) and getting wood (decent quality) cheap and at the sizes you want can be a daunting task when home depot is not accessible. And so I had this brilliant idea of using plywood instead of wood (it is going to be light and easily accessible and mostly cheap).
After buying the plywood, I got it cut from the shop itself and then I thought, how hard could it be, let me just nail the darn thing and boy was I shocked. The wood just split when I tried to make a frame….
Back to drawing board… (just a phrase)

Then it struck me, what better way to do this, then with some “L” clamps and screws. And that is what I did.

So I began measuring the “L”clamps against each slab of wood, marked it for holes that need to be drilled. Then drilled the holes and mounted one end of the “L” clamp on all the small sized slabs (23” – This is based on the size of the rook wool).

Once this was done, I now took each piece and marked it against the longer piece (40” – This is again based on the rock wool) and drilled holes and mounted the other end of the “L” clamp. So on and so forth, and was done with the 7 frames.

Now I needed to nail the back fabric to the frames and chop the extra off.
Once this was done, I turned the frame over with the fabric at the bottom and filled it with two slabs of rock wool. Gave it a tight squeeze.
Now it was ready for the main fabric to be mounted.

It is very important that this is done carefully (and hence changing tone from I to you J)
·         Lay the fabric on the floor (evenly and clean)
·         Place the frame with the rock wool in such a way that the backing fabric is on top.
·         Make sure that there is enough fabric all around to help roll it over the frame.
·         Now stretch the fabric starting from one end of the smaller size and start nailing them to the frame from the center.
·         Do the same thing at the opposite side of the smaller side
·         Now repeat the process of the longer side.
·         Measure and mount the small “L” clams to the frame to be used for hanging the panel.
Once this is done, all that is needed to finish, is finish the edges… (this is easier said than done)
·         You would need to cut the excess pieces of fabric and then tuck one end and fold the other end to give it that professional look. Now nail the fabric on to the frame.
·         You are DONE.

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