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Home Improvement
Home Improvement ideas, help, DIYs, and show room. Got a home improvement project you need help with or want to share. Post your project now!

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Old 12-09-2014, 09:17 AM   #1
Tb151
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Basement Projects

So I've finally begun some basement projects and thought I would start to document there here. We've been in this house for about 3 years, and it came with a huge finished basement. It's not up to my standards and we haven't used it much but recently we finished a patio out back. You enter it from the basement and we replaced some older french doors which were poorly installed, which means it retains heat alot better and it's time to start using it.

The previous owners had decided to build in a REALLY old school big screen tv which was older than the house itself. I was planning on studding in the wall, but was worried about losing access to the hot water heater and plumbing behind it. Theres a small opening on the side by the bar, but I didn't think it would be enough if I ever needed to do work on those. I made the call to reinforce the actual wall unit, and hide it by blending it into the wall. To do this, I decided on using 1/4" red oak plywood and ripping it down into planks. I then dyed them, and finished with several coats of shellac and poly. There were alot of steps involved, but the final outcome is a unit which is quite hidden, yet is fully mobile and can role out to provide full access behind.

I then installed a fully articulating mount and got a new 65" Samsung LED mounted up. All hardware is being mounted behind and I've used long hdmi and other cords so that the tv can me move around easily without getting caught up. The back side of the entertainment center has shelves where I'm mounting up all of my audio equipment. It will be controlled using IR repeaters and stay out of sight.

After, I decided to frame out our large picture window which was done previously with just drywall. I added a full wood frame complete with a hardwood sill made from black walnut. It's right by the pool table so I wanted something people could set their beers on. I geeked out and went to a lumber store which has harder to find wood, and loved the Black Walnut.

Certainly not done with the work down there but thought I would throw up a few pics. Hope you dig it



Starting

















Bar area to the side



Behind Couch



Window Sill Finishing



Partial view of new wood framing




I'm not done, and have decided to move my home theatre stuff down there from our living room. I dont get to use the Subwoofer much as the kids are sleeping and I dont want to wake them, so I figure I will get much more use out of it down there. I'm looking into the proper speakers for this as well, but that's an entirely different story.

Much more to come
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Old 12-10-2014, 07:57 AM   #2
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I have to say, that's pretty genius. Did you do the work yourself? Looks really good!

Is there any AV equipment and if so, how do you access it?

BTW, patio looks great too.

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Old 12-10-2014, 03:24 PM   #3
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I have to say, that's pretty genius. Did you do the work yourself? Looks really good!

Is there any AV equipment and if so, how do you access it?

BTW, patio looks great too.
Thanks! Yes, I did every single thing myself. Youtube and forums are incredible teachers. The current av equipment is limited to my cable box and older denon receiver. They are sitting on shelves in the back of that unit using the ir repeater from Samsung to control them. On the right side (in the pics) there is a smaller doorway type opening where I can walk in to access them. As I add more hardware I'm going to have to revisit this and perhaps put an AV rack in the opening. I just placed an order for some new speakers and will be mounting them on adjustable mounts on either side of the "mobile media wall." Picking them up this weekend so we shall see how that goes!
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Old 12-11-2014, 12:31 PM   #4
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Thanks! Yes, I did every single thing myself. Youtube and forums are incredible teachers. The current av equipment is limited to my cable box and older denon receiver. They are sitting on shelves in the back of that unit using the ir repeater from Samsung to control them. On the right side (in the pics) there is a smaller doorway type opening where I can walk in to access them. As I add more hardware I'm going to have to revisit this and perhaps put an AV rack in the opening. I just placed an order for some new speakers and will be mounting them on adjustable mounts on either side of the "mobile media wall." Picking them up this weekend so we shall see how that goes!
Yeah, the way that wall was studded it looked like an ideal place to build some shelves for AV equipment. Smart to stain the wall a darker color, it really makes the TV blend better. I did the Same thing when I mounted my TV over a fireplace. The darker wall + TV looks very sharp...
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Old 12-11-2014, 12:32 PM   #5
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Old 12-30-2014, 08:16 AM   #6
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Over the holidays I decided to build in an AV rack. Up until now my receiver and cable box were in the rear shelves of the hidden entertainment center. I knew I wanted better/easier access to them and decided to build a rack into the wall between the utility area behind the tv and the bar. As mentioned before, there is a smaller opening for easy access to the water heater and main drain behind there so I decided to keep that opening and build right above it. Here you can see that area, above the green curtain. That will be coming out too but I haven't decided what I want to put in its place, whether a small door, or black curtain, anyone have ideas??



When looking at the spot, there was a 2x4 right in the middle, but its not load bearing. So, I measured out where I wanted the rack to go, and removed it with a hack saw by cutting through the framing nails.



Then, I cut out the drywall



Next I re-framed the opening with 2x4s all around. After that, I used some 1/4" plywood that I had, tipped it and framed out the opening.




I've been really impressed by alot of the diy racks I've seen on here. I considered getting something from Middle Atlantic but since I could build something myself right now, that won out. I decided to use the "Larry Fine" approach (thanks Larry!!) and attached slotted metal shelf bars on the side frame. I then bought rounded edge mdf shelf material and made the right cuts on the front so they would fit seamlessly. I decided to paint the shelves and "jamb" black, and will copy the white mouldings present in the rest of the basement. The interior dimensions are 19.25" wide and around 39" tall.



And here they are in place. I used a flash so you can see the utilities in back, but you cant see anything even with all of the lights on.



The metal support braces are quite a bit longer than the shelves, so I have to determine what to do. I did a test fit of my old receiver and it fits and is still supported very well, but I'd like it to be even more secure. Next up is some nice window moulding to go around this, and then of course getting all of my stuff in there. I have a Denon x4000 which should be delivered any day now, in addition to my cable box, router, cd player and will have room for quite a few other things which will be added. Im moving my Kef speakers down there along with my HSU sub once the Denon arrives. Cant wait!!!

The weekend was also busy because we had a standby generator installed and I also built a cabinet to cover the transfer switch. I had to match the style of the cabinets used for the existing panel, and think it turned out pretty well. It still needs another coat of paint and then i'll cross that one off my list.

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Old 12-30-2014, 08:16 AM   #7
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Pardon the crappy cellphone pic but the molding is up and just have to sand and paint!

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Old 12-30-2014, 10:51 AM   #8
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Nice work. It looks like most of the style in décor is pretty modern, so I don't know that the more traditional window frame matches that well, but I think once you paint it, it may blend better.

Looking forward to seeing the end product.
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Old 12-30-2014, 12:46 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by oie77 View Post
Nice work. It looks like most of the style in décor is pretty modern, so I don't know that the more traditional window frame matches that well, but I think once you paint it, it may blend better.

Looking forward to seeing the end product.
Thanks for the feedback. Consider the light fixtures and current barstools gone. They will be replaced with more classical styled elements. The pool table light for example is



Here is my kitchen as well, which is on another thread, so you get a sense of the style we're going with.




And my office




I think the wall is certainly modern, but can play off the classical style more. Also the bar will be demolished with something else in its place.

I just have to find some time to do it all!! I'm heading over to CES next week, so no time for more projects but I may see some cool tech i can incorporate!
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Old 12-31-2014, 11:19 AM   #10
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I see what youre saying. When I look at your other rooms, it looks like it would blend pretty well.

I really like the office desk! Is that a custom piece? Where'd you get it?
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Old 12-31-2014, 11:40 AM   #11
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I like how you handled your wires on that desk. I hate exposed wires and yet I'm afflicted with them all the time. I'm curious if it's custom as well.
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Old 12-31-2014, 01:06 PM   #12
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Thanks guys yeah the power management is an awesome feature, which was actually built in already. It's the Hendrix desk from Pottery Barn

http://www.potterybarn.com/products/...chnology-desk/


I liked it because it was much bigger than most desks, and i wanted the scale for the room. Plus it matched the look I was going for. I've done alot more to that room since those pics actually. Im from the Adirondacks so I have some old wooden skis mounted to the wall, a paddle I used for a 60 mile canoe trip and some rustic art.
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Old 12-31-2014, 01:17 PM   #13
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Ahhh many thanks Tb151 you gave me the term I needed to have in that link. "Smart Desk".

I have two homes, the one I'm having storage issues with is the 700 sq foot loft in downtown Houston. I want to keep the decor ultra modern since I rent it out sometimes and managing all these cables for the flat screen and my computer desk has been maddening. But you got me to the right place, this is probably more my style.

http://homelilys.com/furniture-smart...impressive.htm

Thanks again!
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Old 01-03-2015, 08:14 PM   #14
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Pardon the bad pic, but moved the new speakers to the basement, along with my sub. My Denon x4000 finally arrived so im putting it all together. I also installed surround speakers, thank god for drop ceilings.

My awesome "stands" are my much older Becker speakers which will be handling that role until i pick out real stands. My sub (HSU VTF3-MK4) is also in its temporary spot until my longer cable comes in. I'm running that to a spot next to my couch where it will terminate in a wall plate. This stuff is addicting.

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Old 01-14-2015, 08:56 AM   #15
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Did a few more things over the last couple of days to tidy up some things. First thing was to finish the trim on the bigger picture window. Typically you don't use a "stool" which is the ledge on a window that has the more modern framing with mitered corners but I wanted to maintain consistency with the rest of them in the basement. So i had to determine whether i would just use a more colonial apron on the bottom or something else. It's a bit unconventional but I opted to have mitered edges also on the bottom, which just required smaller cuts for the side pieces which would then butt up against the stool, parallel with the upper side pieces. I haven't ever seen it done this way, but I like the final look.




Next up was a low voltage outlet for my subwoofer cable. I'm putting the sub next to the couch so I had to run in wall cables from the receiver to that. Its an exterior wall but I'm somehow getting scary good with the snake and was able to get it up and through the insulation on my first try

The HSU sub looks small in this but I can assure you it's not. And with it facing the sectional, it's body shaking experience. I believe the wife approves, heck I approve! I got the inwall cable from Monoprice, then the outlet, low voltage box and shorter cable to the sub from Amazon.





Next up was to mount the surrounds. I haven't upgraded yet so I put some Jamo's in place with mounts admittedly much larger than needed. Then I ran in wall Monoprice 12 gauge speaker wire to them. My wife didn't like seeing the small amount of speaker wire in the back so I tried using some wire loom. I actually like the result, at least for now. I'm also surprisingly pleased with their sound, especially with the end battle scene from Thor, Dark World, it gets pretty intense!





The next major move will be a total reimagining of the bar area. I'm looking to build out more of a kitchenette type thing, with cabinets along the back wall and a Bar/Island. I'm weighing my options, to either build something myself, find a kitchen showroom display deal on Craigslist or do an Ikea setup. The catch with Ikea is that they're launching an entirely new line in the beginning of February, so I may wait until then to see what they are offering.

I also need to find the right speaker stands for the Kef's.

Stay tuned!
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