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Author Topic: Converting My Garage  (Read 9938 times)

el duderino

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Converting My Garage
« on: April 04, 2007, 05:00:11 pm »

hey everybody...this is going to be a long process (and post)so i appreciate any help. hell i appreciate you reading it at all!

well, i've decided to bite the bullet and convert my garage. Not to a full blown studio, but a quality control room with an iso booth for overdubs. and HOPEFULLY a half bathroom.

Its going to be DIY for the most part (aside from electrical and other things that kill). Luckily, just about every local band I've worked with has at least 1 guy who does some form of construction so most labor will be free. Plus, it turns out an old friend is a plumber who is starting a metal band that needs to record. So im callin in favors and setting up to owe some.

Now, the space is a two car detached garage that is about 20'x 20'and has nothing in it. cement slab for a floor and the walls are basically just studs inside. outside is sort of stucco but not 100% sure on that. The ceiling is about 8' where it meets the side wall and slopes up to 14' in the center.

First off, do you guys think this is doable? i mean i know we can build it, but do you think it could be up to the potential im hoping (gear aside for now)?

Also, (and this is where i have no clue) putting in electricity (only has 1 outlet at present) and some sort of heating system/AC are blowing my mind. When exactly does this stuff happen? would it need a frame for the inner wall built before both can go in? how's it usually done? is this stuff going to cost as much as materials for everything else? thats my current grief.

another thing im wondering is if the iso booth will do its job. there's going to be loud amps in it and while ive dealt with less than stellar iso booths before, they were in studios where id didnt have to worry about neighbors. well, at least MY neighbors. Also, building an iso booth would be better than one of those pre fab ones right?

btw, the closest building is my house about 20 ft away. then a neighbor's house about the same distance, maybe a bit more. I'd very much like to not piss them off when doing rhythm gtrs at 2 am. Plus, i monitor fairly loud.

i've read the master handbook of acoustics (a couple times) and keep going back to it as well as this forum and some others and of course ethan's site. I *think* i have an ok grasp of building the shell- thick insulation, layer of drywall caulked, 4" air gap, second wall with more insulation and two layers of drywall caulked and having the seams of them not on top of one another. then comes bass traps and diffusers where needed.

would it be beneficial to use rigid fiberglass in either wall instead of the usual stuff?

would the ceiling need as much, or could 1 layer of drywall and a lot of insulation do it? im mainly worried about the weight with much more than that.

ive got about 5 guys to help do drywall, insulation, and flooring. Plus I'm putting a new roof on this sucker so we'll be ripping off the old one to save money. I'll handle the audio cabling and initial acoustic design (hoping to have enough $ to pay for some consultancy on that).

Well thats about it for now. Am i insane? I figure in a worst case scenario where i fail at having a studio I'll have added some value to my home by having a separate functioning "guest house" that needs some windows Laughing

I'll try to get exact measurements tonight or tomorrow and post a little diagram of what im thinking of.

Thanks in advance. As this thing moves along i'll post pictures of the progress. now to go read Fibes buildout thread....again.
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crna59

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Re: Converting My Garage
« Reply #1 on: April 04, 2007, 11:11:25 pm »

This is good that you are asking now. First I would make sure the structure is sound! LOL Not kidding! The thing you should consider is to build a room within a room. That's what I did in my basement. Luckily for me the ceiling height was 12'. You will also need this to contain the sound and keep sound from outside coming in.
Now... If the building is ready, you'll need electrical/plumbing permits. Also if you want complete isolation, you might want to saw the concrete between the rooms. Now before you put anything on the walls, you will need to acoustically caulk every seam/hole/junction... whatever. Acoustical caulk is cheap and I went through 33 cases!
Next comes the plumbing. This you will need to saw the concrete for drainage. Consult a plumber. Next will be electrical. Wires will be run through studs/joists. You'll need to caulk these as well. My electrical was $30k. !! Acoustical caulk is your friend!
Next comes the insulation. Rock wool is the best, but the pink stuff will be more cost efficient. You can then start to think about if you want a room within a room, or just build everything up. Don't forget the vapor barrier on the concrete before you build anything on it. I sealed the concrete first.
You can either do 2 layers of 5/8 plywood on the floor with Green Glue inbetween or a raised platform floor.
Drywall is fine. Two layers of drywall with Green Glue is better. You want to decouple everything as much as possible. Think about Resilient channel. If you like to see some work in progress, take a look at my build. I spared no expense at sound isolation. You can use as much or less as your budget will allow!

http://gallery.audioasylum.com/cgi/view.mpl?UserImages=1002

Regards,
Bruce

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el duderino

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Re: Converting My Garage
« Reply #2 on: April 06, 2007, 04:32:11 pm »

thanks!

its going to be 1 room with an iso so i dont think i'll saw the concrete. Tho it may help the booth i guess. hmmm....

30k on electric is alot! more than my whole budget for this in fact. I'm hoping its no where near that. Sad

I'll check into resilient channel, thanks.

Thanks for the link to your build, very helpful. I was thinking of going with u-boats under the floor as well.

I've been busy but will get a diagram u soon. Thanks again.
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el duderino

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Re: Converting My Garage
« Reply #3 on: July 25, 2007, 03:46:10 pm »

hey guys...

so after way too long ive finally gotten to the point where things are finally ready to begin. aside from permits but thats coming within a few days.

ive attached a VERY rough sketch of what im trying to do.

the air gap will be 6", or so im planning. I cant go much bigger but if there's a reason for it to be smaller I'm all ears.

right now im wondering what to do about the squareness of it. it's 19' x 19' now and when the inner walls go up it will come down to 17 ft 2 6/8 in. for length & width.

what i'm considering is bringing in a wall a few feet more and make it into a closet for storage. but will this work? or just add to my problems?

also if there are any suggestions on re arranging the positioning of things id love to hear it.

kind of just freaking out here over it and wondering if it will end up being horrendous and require a similar if not larger budget to treat the room. Crying or Very Sad index.php/fa/5773/0/
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crna59

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Re: Converting My Garage
« Reply #4 on: July 25, 2007, 04:59:19 pm »

I'd say if it were me that had this space, I would rotate everything 90 degrees to the right and have the door over my left shoulder and the Iso booth over my right shoulder. That way you could triangulate the 2 front corners for  bass traps and add diffusion/absorption to the side walls at your first reflection points, or better yet, angle the walls somewhat.
You might want to think about building a perimeter soffit around the whole room for bass trapping.
See attachment.


Regards,
Bruceindex.php/fa/5777/0/index.php/fa/5778/0/
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el duderino

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Re: Converting My Garage
« Reply #5 on: July 27, 2007, 02:56:34 pm »

thanks bruce!

i was considering turning it the room orientation and the bass traps in the front corners makes sense.

I dont think im following the "building a perimeter soffit around the whole room for bass trapping" though.


could you elaborate?

thanks for the input btw.
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crna59

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Re: Converting My Garage
« Reply #6 on: July 27, 2007, 11:23:46 pm »

For a perimeter soffit, you frame out approximately a foot or so down from the ceiling and about a foot or so out from the wall. You put rigid fiberglass on the inside and you can use the bottom for lighting like I did. I have removable panels that will be covered in rigid fiberglass and fabric. Take a look at the picture.

Regards,
Bruceindex.php/fa/5791/0/
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Ian Visible

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Re: Converting My Garage
« Reply #7 on: July 30, 2007, 09:04:45 am »

Eek, there's a ghost in your control room!  Shocked

el duderino

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Re: Converting My Garage
« Reply #8 on: July 30, 2007, 03:19:12 pm »

ahhhh..i see. thanks for posting the pic.

Do you think it would work if i used the space over the air gap? or might i create a resonating cavity?

I was considering it but now it looks like it could be worth it. Id have the inner wall go up to 8ft and the ceiling slopes up into the center so there would be roughly a foot high, probably a little less, and similar amount going out from the ceiling that i could stuff with rigid fiberglass. The air gap would get covered over with plywood or something to close off the space between the walls.

am i nuts?
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gullfo

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Re: Converting My Garage
« Reply #9 on: August 06, 2007, 08:58:58 pm »

you'll likely need soffits or something overhead for hvac so the top level soffits may be useful for trapping as well as hiding duct work if you cathedral the ceiling. if you do cathedral the ceiling, you should align the CR so the front has the ceiling sloping up and away, rather than on one side or the other.

index.php/fa/5867/0/
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Glenn Stanton

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Steve Hudson

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Re: Converting My Garage
« Reply #10 on: August 07, 2007, 03:19:58 pm »

Glenn's got some good ideas in his sketch. A square room is very problematic acoustically, so the CR should be narrowed as Glenn suggests. Do a search on room ratios and figure out what the ideal width would be with the fixed front-to-back dimension (19') and the average ceiling height. By way of example, I have a 20'x20' space with an average 10.5' ceiling, so we went with a roughly 19'x14' control room layout.
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Dave Snyder

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Re: Converting My Garage
« Reply #11 on: August 07, 2007, 11:33:55 pm »

1:1.6:2.33 "golden ratio".  I've never used it, but I've read about it.  Any opinions?

Workable CR dimensions for your garage would be 8' ceiling x 12.8' width x 18.64' length.  

Leaves room for the iso.  Good luck!!
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gullfo

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Re: Converting My Garage
« Reply #12 on: August 09, 2007, 10:55:42 pm »

there's a number of aspects to consider and room ratio is a good starting point. you can also layout the room width-wise as well as length-wise.

index.php/fa/5878/0/
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el duderino

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Re: Converting My Garage
« Reply #13 on: August 14, 2007, 01:48:51 pm »

whoa thanks glenn. much appreciated. I've been changing things around a bit and one thing i came up with is very similar to your first layout.

I've been measuring and figuring out exactly what the walls will be made of and how thick they'll end up being and also have been playing with ratios.

I've been using ethan's room mode calc and i've managed to end up using a recommended ratio afterall. 1:1.29:1.56 (if i remember that correctly, but it must be close if its not). So the control room will be 17ft 9in long, 13ft 10in wide and the ceiling is an average of 11ft.

the iso wont be quite as big as id like but its mainly for amps and there will be enough room for a singer in there. I figure if i need to OD something requiring more space we just stick on some cans and do it in the room.

thanks for the help guys, much appreciated. I'll be sure to take pics. We start by this weekend sometime, all depending on when i can get the damn electrical inspector on the phone to verify we need an 18" trench for the electrical run to the place.

time to get dirty.
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el duderino

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Re: Converting My Garage
« Reply #14 on: September 27, 2007, 11:24:37 am »

well, the trench is done. 20" deep and about 45ft long. would have been easier if there wasn't a bunch of concrete about a foot down!

also framed the wall that closed off the garage door. and of course took out the rails and opener.

also started working on the ceiling.

sunday we run electrical. its going great so far. the inspectors have been easier to deal with than i imagined thankfully.

pics coming soon....
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franman

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Re: Converting My Garage
« Reply #15 on: September 30, 2007, 06:06:52 pm »

Take it easy Dave... don't want you to get in over your head!! LOL... Twisted Evil

The ratio listed is a good starting point, but as has been pointed out many times, each size calls for individual calculation of room ratios... sounds like this is well underway at this point.. Best of luck Dude and keep us advised!!


Dave Snyder wrote on Tue, 07 August 2007 23:33

1:1.6:2.33 "golden ratio".  I've never used it, but I've read about it.  Any opinions?

Workable CR dimensions for your garage would be 8' ceiling x 12.8' width x 18.64' length.  

Leaves room for the iso.  Good luck!!

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el duderino

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Re: Converting My Garage
« Reply #16 on: November 20, 2007, 04:50:34 pm »

hey all, i'm back from working like a dog for what feels like eternity.

so most of the electrical is run (some going through the floor and in a wall yet to be built) ceiling beams are up, insulation on the exterior walls are done, vapor barrier, and we started to drywall the ceiling 2 days ago. what a pain in the ass that is! and i swear pics are coming very soon.

Right now, I'm wondering about my room dimensions. Particularly about having air gaps (large ones) behind two walls.

what i'm currently planning on will make the control room 9'8 1/4" High, 15'4 1/2" Long, and 12' 2 1/4" Wide. My question really is in relation to the length of the room. The actual length now is 18' 11.5" so there would be an air gap of a bit under 22" at the front or the back.

does this sound nuts? i've been trying to get a good ratio and this is pretty much it. but, it isn't a big room and 3.5' is kind of alot to lose. will this help much, or should I try to keep the space?

I keep reading as much as I can, but having never done this and reading that sometimes things still don't work out it makes me wonder.

Wish I had the dough for a proper consultation but I need to afford some gear for this thing when its done too! Rolling Eyes

any help is much appreciated as always.
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jimmyjazz

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Re: Converting My Garage
« Reply #17 on: November 21, 2007, 01:48:48 am »

My instinct -- and it's nothing more than that, and certainly not supported by any of the science -- is that for "small" rooms I'd err towards a larger room size than any specific set of room ratios.  That is, unless you can find good uses for the chopped up spaces.
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el duderino

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Re: Converting My Garage
« Reply #18 on: November 21, 2007, 10:13:43 am »

thats exactly what crossed my mind. it isnt a big space so having as much space as possible would be nice. I'm just concerned about modes and if the walls (with the air gap) will really make a difference. Not bothering neighbors is a concern, but its already pretty damn quite in there.

hmmmmm.......

ps: tried to upload pics last night but I used my fiance's camera and of coarse now the battery charger is mia. Evil or Very Mad
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rankus

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Re: Converting My Garage
« Reply #19 on: November 21, 2007, 01:35:12 pm »



I too would go for more space.  You can always plug it up later by building say, floor to ceiling lockers/storage etc.

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Wes Lachot

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Re: Converting My Garage
« Reply #20 on: November 22, 2007, 09:22:19 am »

el duderino wrote on Tue, 20 November 2007 13:50



Right now, I'm wondering about my room dimensions. Particularly about having air gaps (large ones) behind two walls.

what i'm currently planning on will make the control room 9'8 1/4" High, 15'4 1/2" Long, and 12' 2 1/4" Wide. My question really is in relation to the length of the room. The actual length now is 18' 11.5" so there would be an air gap of a bit under 22" at the front or the back.

does this sound nuts? i've been trying to get a good ratio and this is pretty much it. but, it isn't a big room and 3.5' is kind of alot to lose.


Here's a way you can make your room deeper and still maintain good ratios. Check it out -

You are currently using the old 1 : 1.26 : 1.59 ratios, which I like very much and have had good results with. But you can increase your depth to 17'-0 and obtain the ratios 1 : 1.26 : 1.76, which are just as good if not better. That gives you a width to depth ratio of 1 : 1.4, which is about the best ratio out there (an augmented fourth).

--Wes
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el duderino

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Re: Converting My Garage
« Reply #21 on: November 22, 2007, 11:34:24 am »

Thanks Wes! that sounds like a great idea. I'll have to look into the augmented fourth's as I dont fully understand it, but from what you say it sure sounds good.

Happy Thanksgiving everybody!
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gullfo

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Re: Converting My Garage
« Reply #22 on: November 24, 2007, 09:48:06 am »

here's a couple of good links that will only take, um, a little bit of time to go through Wink Twisted Evil

http://weslachotdesign.com/new/articles_scales_content.html

http://goldennumber.net/
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el duderino

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Re: Converting My Garage
« Reply #23 on: March 21, 2008, 03:23:07 pm »

hello all..

first my apologies for having not kept up with this thread as i had originally intended. life sometimes is full of crazy things that eat up your time, among other things. but the garage is getting veryclose to done. with actual building anyway.

I swear pics are coming in the next couple days, but basically where im at is as follows:

all walls framed, insulated, and drywalled
all wiring done
floor framed and insulated and now has one layer of ply on it

the floor sits on u-boats btw.

basically whats left is the second layer of plywood for the floor,  the iso booth window, hooking up the AC/heater mini split system (electrical already run for it), doors for the iso and the closet, the actual flooring (probably laminate fake wood stuff), the real lighting fixtures, and painting.

the first half of that list will be getting done this weekend. along with smoothing out/fixing any spackling.

it feels good to finally be getting somewhere. the last few months have been filled all sorts of un-fun things....my "foreman" broke his arm real bad and was out of commission for a while (ever seen an external facilitator?), my mom had cancer removed (looking good they say), 2 couples im friends with got divorced, and the majority of my friends helping me were on tour for the last month. not to mention that whole holiday period where everyone is always busy or... well you get the point.

so, things are back on track and now im wondering about acoustic treatment and such. i was going to build things but ive decided to buy most things instead. ive been looking at GIK products. real traps seem great but too much $ for me for the amount i'll probably need to buy

right now im considering putting carpet on the ceiling. in part because im worried about too many reflections but also so i dont have to look at the, lets say, less than perfect spackle job on the ceiling. Very Happy  I'm figuring with hard floors it shouldnt be too much but would like to hear your thoughts on it.

i plan on getting some diffusors, probably the auralex spacearray or the rpg omnifusor but need to check prices. i saw the GIK diffusor but man is that thing ugly. inexpensive, but ugly.

again, sorry to have seemingly abandoned the thread.
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gullfo

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Re: Converting My Garage
« Reply #24 on: March 24, 2008, 11:33:43 am »

skip the carpet on the ceiling. its likely a ifre safety/code violation as well as being worse than nothing... put up some GIK 242 or 244 absorbers on the ceiling - space them apart by 18-24" - this will give you enough to hide the spackling Smile and provide a good level of absorption.
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rankus

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Re: Converting My Garage
« Reply #25 on: March 24, 2008, 04:16:49 pm »



Pictures pictures pictures !  Smile

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el duderino

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Re: Converting My Garage
« Reply #26 on: March 25, 2008, 08:45:50 pm »

well nothing happened this weekend since everyone had things to do on sunday for easter and me with the wacky schedule was busy saturday all day. so, excuse the mess Laughing

here is the view when you walk in. the mix position will be a bit in front of where that brown corner desk is.index.php/fa/8263/0/
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el duderino

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Re: Converting My Garage
« Reply #27 on: March 25, 2008, 08:47:52 pm »

here is the view when you walk in if you look a bit left at the iso,closet, and rear of the control room.

index.php/fa/8264/0/
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el duderino

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Re: Converting My Garage
« Reply #28 on: March 25, 2008, 08:50:40 pm »

here is the same view but looking up....the lights are temporary until its painted and i get some sort positional/track lighting. which reminds me, any suggestions on dimmers? they can be a pita.

index.php/fa/8265/0/
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el duderino

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Re: Converting My Garage
« Reply #29 on: March 25, 2008, 09:12:54 pm »

here is the view from the iso windowindex.php/fa/8267/0/
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el duderino

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Re: Converting My Garage
« Reply #30 on: March 25, 2008, 09:14:01 pm »

and here is a shot looking toward the back by the closet from the front corner.index.php/fa/8268/0/
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el duderino

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Re: Converting My Garage
« Reply #31 on: May 07, 2008, 01:27:00 pm »

so its pretty much all done now. i'll post pics once its lookin all perty. i got a bunch of 244's for the ceiling and will be ordering more panels for the rest of the room soon. right now, im dealing with a set back due to the mini split heat pump tripping the circuit its on. 15A heat pump, 20A circuit, nothing else on it. and it was the electrical that was already run to the garage (the only line) and working fine. ARGGG! could be the unit itself but want to make sure before getting a replacement.

oh and the dimmers for the track lighting are buzzing. so i have to figure that out too. just wish the heat pump was working so i can move everything in there. the weather is still too weird here. 80 one day then 40 at night the next.

i'll be back.....
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rankus

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Re: Converting My Garage
« Reply #32 on: May 07, 2008, 02:14:15 pm »



Ian,  Try swapping out the breaker with a new one... They can get "tired" and trip at low amps...

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el duderino

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Re: Converting My Garage
« Reply #33 on: May 07, 2008, 03:03:08 pm »

will do Rick, thanks for the tip!
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danickstr

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Re: Converting My Garage
« Reply #34 on: May 09, 2008, 08:44:53 pm »

some motors need more than the rated amps to start, and it may be just enough to put you over the 20 amp circuit.  seems silly, but that is the way they do it.

btw great 3d artwork by the guy from NJ!

also, nice room by my neighbor in Issaquah
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el duderino

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Re: Converting My Garage
« Reply #35 on: May 10, 2008, 10:07:19 am »

well it turns out it was the emergency shutoff breaker outside. but we've got that under control and now im just waiting to get some R410A put in it and then its time to move stuff in. woo hoo! I hung up a bunch 244's (getting more) and they look great and have made a noticeable difference when just standing there and talking.
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el duderino

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Re: Converting My Garage
« Reply #36 on: August 19, 2008, 01:48:22 pm »

ok. so let me say im sorry its taken so long for some completed pics. had some things to do like, get married, work everyday, get someone who take take a picture without screwing it up (ala me) and wait for dumb shit to happen like the r410a! but i am sorry. you guys provided me with more help than you think. thanks a ton.

here are some pics of the place.index.php/fa/9748/0/

view from the back. better chair coming soon.
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el duderino

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Re: Converting My Garage
« Reply #37 on: August 19, 2008, 01:51:09 pm »

this is the rear view. the coffee table and couch are on wheels so i just push the table to the side wall and move the couch up right behind me and voila! a space for drums. it wasn't in my initial plan, but they sound surprisingly good in there. woo hoo!

index.php/fa/9749/0/
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el duderino

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Re: Converting My Garage
« Reply #38 on: August 19, 2008, 01:57:28 pm »

here's a shot of the iso booth. looks smaller than it actually is, but it isnt very big. just big enough for an amp or two, ac gtr, vocals, etc.

again im sorry for seemingly abandoning this thread but its been busy, thankfully. just 2 days ago i actually had people with record deals in my humble place and i've got quite a bit lined up for the next few months. which is good cuz i got DEBT!

who am i kidding, its all going to get reshuffled into an ATB and new converters. thanx again guys, you rule.

index.php/fa/9750/0/
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C.Cash

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Re: Converting My Garage
« Reply #39 on: August 20, 2008, 11:30:10 am »

looks great man!
Is that a Halogen lamp? If so does it have a dimmer and if so is it quiet?

Thanks.
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el duderino

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Re: Converting My Garage
« Reply #40 on: August 20, 2008, 12:41:41 pm »

C.Cash wrote on Wed, 20 August 2008 11:30

looks great man!
Is that a Halogen lamp? If so does it have a dimmer and if so is it quiet?

Thanks.


thanks! that is not a halogen lamp. it is a random piece of crap lamp that somehow survived a couple moves and the wife wanted it gone. very low WAF. think i got it at ikea 5 or 6 years ago. odd thing is, the top part buzzes a bit but the little side arm light doesn't. but thats fine since everyone wants it dim anyway.

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