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Author Topic: Building DIY floating room - possible?  (Read 2060 times)

New Room

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Building DIY floating room - possible?
« on: September 23, 2007, 06:56:45 am »

Hello chaps,

I'm still trying to get my head 'round the possibilities and costs of building my new mastering room (see here: http://recforums.prosoundweb.com/index.php/t/19009/16082/ )

It seems to me the best bang for buck would be to employ someone like Franman or Wes L to provide a complete and detailed design, then build the whole thing myself.

Sooooo, my question is, do you folks think that this is feasible? - that someone like me (with no prior building experience, though mildly handy at DIY) could build a room based on a proper, pro design?.....money would need to saved somewhere, but I'm not sure that the design phase is the place to do it!

Or is building a pro studio only to be done by pro builders?

BTW, I'm in Europe so no on-site supervision would be possible for the designer.

Thanks! .... New Room
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gullfo

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Re: Building DIY floating room - possible?
« Reply #1 on: September 23, 2007, 07:42:02 am »

i would agree having Fran or Wes design your facility would be a really good choice, but then not to follow up with a proper and precision construction phase would seem to be less desirable. i guess it depends on your expectations and budget. for example, maybe a smaller mastering suite properly designed and constructed is better than a large one with a proper design but not necessarily properly constructed.  Confused
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Glenn Stanton

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Wes Lachot

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Re: Building DIY floating room - possible?
« Reply #2 on: September 23, 2007, 01:38:12 pm »

New Room wrote on Sun, 23 September 2007 03:56


...Sooooo, my question is, do you folks think that this is feasible? - that someone like me (with no prior building experience, though mildly handy at DIY) could build a room based on a proper, pro design?.....money would need to saved somewhere, but I'm not sure that the design phase is the place to do it!

Or is building a pro studio only to be done by pro builders?

BTW, I'm in Europe so no on-site supervision would be possible for the designer.

Thanks! .... New Room


You are smart not to skimp on the design, that being so very critical. I've done plenty of projects with DIY builders - sometimes with band members pitching in and whatnot, or maybe with the owner doing a good bit of the labor and trading out studio time for some of the work. One upside is that no-one is as passionate about getting it right as the owner, usually. And the savings in contracting fees can be up to one third of the overall cost. Owner contracting can be a very rewarding experience, but it takes a lot of diligence and hard work to search out the lowest prices for materials and labor and so on. You also need to check to see if a licensed contractor is required in your locality.

Some of the DIY projects I've been involved with went pretty quickly, but other DIYers can tend to go pretty slowly. That's a potential downside, as I see it. But it can be done, for sure. Start watching building videos and subscribing to building magazines. Got any friends in the trades?

--Wes
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Wes Lachot Design
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Adam Miller

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Re: Building DIY floating room - possible?
« Reply #3 on: September 23, 2007, 02:27:41 pm »

New Room wrote on Sun, 23 September 2007 11:56


BTW, I'm in Europe so no on-site supervision would be possible for the designer.

Thanks! .... New Room


There are a few european designers out there! (Well mostly UK based, but they would probably travel to the continent if needs be).

Adam
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jfrigo

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Re: Building DIY floating room - possible?
« Reply #4 on: September 23, 2007, 10:25:36 pm »

In knowing ahead of time that it will be a DIY project, good designers will make choices to fit your design goals, one of which in this case is to be able to build it yourself. They will not spec a jack floor if you don't have the necessary skills. Instead they will suggest something more appropriate for your situation, like pucks or U-boats, and probably even help you source the materials.

Still, you should familiarize yourself with common mistakes to avoid. A build team with zero experience in studios can still mess up a good plan, even with the best of intentions. However, with some self study and a designer who keeps your experience level in mind, you should do fine.

The thing to worry about is when in the middle of the build you start saying, "couldn't I just X-Y-Z instead?" Well, if you didn't want to the meet design goals, then you could start second guessing the designer, but then why hire one in the first place? Any project limitations you should let them know up front, and they'll warn you of any compromises, but you'll get the best room possible within your constraints. Just follow their advice. Too many times I've seen people leave out  vital pieces of the build, or make major mistakes while thinking they were just making inconsequential adjustments.
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New Room

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Re: Building DIY floating room - possible?
« Reply #5 on: September 24, 2007, 01:50:56 am »

All good advice, thanks a lot!
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franman

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Re: Building DIY floating room - possible?
« Reply #6 on: September 30, 2007, 05:56:18 pm »

Yeah.. I always tell folks one of the things they are paying for with a firm like ours is "complete and detailed plans"... this means, that anybody who knows how to read architectural drawings and has the care to do a proper job, can build a studio correctly. It's not rocket surgery!! (and I'm not a bored certified rocket surgeon!!)...

Having said all that, there is a level of DIY when it comes to construction, that would be required for an ambitious project, ie: floating construction, proper mechanical, electrical and high end acoustic finishes including stretched fabric.

We have done plenty of projects with clients where I knew they were going to basically Do It Themselves and we try to detail things in such a manner as to make is as fool proof as possible. Stick to the dimensions and materials we specify, and it usually works out well.. The assumption is that you "have some skills" in construction which may include: electrical wiring, duct work, carpentry, fabric work... There is a reason that a high end studio involves so many specialty sub-contractors... Anyway, it can be done!! Just takes some perseverance from both the client and the designer.
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