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VOCOMOTION - A Cappella Studio - Construction Thread Channel Strip Plugins
Old 19th August 2008
  #1
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VOCOMOTION - A Cappella Studio - Construction Thread

About VOCOMOTION:
VOCOMOTION is an award-winning a cappella production facility based just outside of Chicago. Since 1998, we have produced only a cappella albums for groups all over the US, Canada, UK, Denmark, Venezuela, etc.


The New Facility
For the first ten years, we were located in Evanston, IL and now we're building a new facility in Skokie, IL (just three miles away from the current studio). I hired the Walters-Storyk Design Group (WSDG) to design the new space. John Storyk is the architect and Matt Ballos is the Project Manager. We're building in the Historic Bronx Building in Skokie, IL, which was built in 1926/1927 and has some interesting challenges for us, being such an old building.


Goals
The goals of the new space are to keep the design very modern, sleek, and streamlined for how we record & mix a cappella music. At the same time, we are trying to be as "green" as possible by using recycled, reclaimed, renewable, and efficient materials and systems.

The studio will have a mix room and an iso booth. The building also has mens/womens bathrooms, kitchen, rec room (pool, ping pong, pinball, futons), conference room, parking lot, etc. As for layout, I wanted as little between me and the monitors (almost like a mastering studio), so all my rack gear will sit behind me and will only have the smallest-possible desk right in front of me (just big enough to hold my tiny bluetooth keyboard, mouse, and Avocet controller). There will be a 52" LCD display on a stand between the monitors, as well as a 20" LCD displaying a video-feed from the iso-booth. The iso-booth will have an LCD mounted on the wall for singers to follow their sheet music (a cappella groups usually write out their arrangements and have to follow in the studio). To turn pages silently, they will wave their hand in front of a sensor (the sound of pages turning drives me nuts).

The Team
Architect - John Storyk, Walters-Storyk Design Group
General Contractor - Irwin Axelrod Construction
Electrical Contractor - Kimbar Electric Company
Acoustic Materials Supplier - The HUFF Company
Lighting Fixtures - Nora Lighting
Custom Racks - Sound Construction & Supply



--> freddie
Old 19th August 2008
  #2
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Here's the latest "scheme" we're up to (Scheme #4):
Attached Thumbnails
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Old 3rd September 2008
  #3
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I've just gotten the Low-Frequency Analysis report from WSDG. I've posted it on the Construction Diary (can't post pics here, I guess).
Old 4th September 2008
  #4
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I got the "90% Pricing Set" from WSDG last night. I guess this means that they're 90% done, but done enough to get bids from contractors and submit for permits, etc.

Of course, I haven't heard back from my possible General Contractor on the project. Anyone know anybody good in the Chicago area?

Thanks!

--> freddie
Old 4th September 2008
  #5
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Good luck with it!

You learn a lot, real fast, when you get into this studio building madness!
Old 19th November 2008
  #6
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Demolition has begun!

We ripped up the old carpeting in the space yesterday. There is tiny ceramic tile underneath, but we'll be leaving that (when we tried to rip it up, it was bringing up chunks of the soft concrete below it). We'll be putting a layer of Kinetics SR Floorboard, then two layers of 1/2" plywood, then bamboo hardwood flooring.

The ceiling is coming down next. I'm supposed to get the full Construction Drawings from WSDG today, so I'll post some of them here...it's like 30-pages long, so won't post it all.

--> freddie
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Old 24th November 2008
  #7
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I received the final construction drawings from WSDG last week. Here are some of the 27 pages of drawings here. We’re submitting for permits today and should be ready to start actual construction in about two weeks (hopefully!).

--> freddie
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Old 26th November 2008
  #8
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I just paid for all the acoustic materials and placed my order with The HUFF Company. Here’s what that includes:

* Kinetics SR Floorboard and Permiter Isolation Board (for isolated floor)
* Mass-loaded vinyl rolls (between layers of drywall in the walls)
* Kinetics IsoMax clips (for RC in walls)
* Kinetics ICW spring hangers (for ceiling)
* Fabric-wrapped acoustic panels (for walls)
* Fabric-wrapped cloud panels (for ceiling)
* Kinetics HighTones diffusor panels (for rear custom diffusor)
* NoiseBarriers acoustic glass door (for iso-booth)
* Door seals (for all other doors)

That’s a lot of STUFF! Doesn’t include the three big-ass RPG Modex Plates that will get mounted on the ceiling. Those will be ordered soon too…

--> freddie
Old 28th November 2008
  #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vocomotion View Post
I just paid for all the acoustic materials and placed my order with The HUFF Company. Here’s what that includes:

* Kinetics SR Floorboard and Permiter Isolation Board (for isolated floor)
* Mass-loaded vinyl rolls (between layers of drywall in the walls)
* Kinetics IsoMax clips (for RC in walls)
* Kinetics ICW spring hangers (for ceiling)
* Fabric-wrapped acoustic panels (for walls)
* Fabric-wrapped cloud panels (for ceiling)
* Kinetics HighTones diffusor panels (for rear custom diffusor)
* NoiseBarriers acoustic glass door (for iso-booth)
* Door seals (for all other doors)

That’s a lot of STUFF! Doesn’t include the three big-ass RPG Modex Plates that will get mounted on the ceiling. Those will be ordered soon too…

--> freddie
Hi Freddie,
thanks for your construction thread, it's a always a pleasure to see a new studio in the making.
I'd like to know if you can tell us ballpark figures for the Kinetics products (especially the SR floorboard). I'm about to decide if I wanna rebuild my studio from zero or just make some improvement and the Kinetics products are high on my list, unfortunately I sent them and e-mail and got no reply. I just would like to know if we're talking about a 1000, 10.000 or 100.000 figure, so I'd know in a minute if I can afford it or not.

Thanks.
Old 28th November 2008
  #10
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The SR Floorboard and PIR should cost less than like $5/sqft. All the acoustics materials for my 430sqft studio will come in around $20k.

--> freddie
Old 28th November 2008
  #11
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Also Judah, if you can't get Kinetics to respond, try finding a rep near you. Check out The HUFF Company at: The HUFF Company, Inc. Home Page. I've been working with Todd Mitchell, one of the owners (it's a father/son business for like 40 years).

--> freddie
Old 2nd December 2008
  #12
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They're installing the new electrical service today!! He's bringing in 400Amps, 200 of which will be for my studio and the other 200 will probably just sit unused (but to be used for other offices in the building at some point). The subpanels are being installed today too. I'll take some pics of that later.

This is the big panel that will sit on the other side of the wall, on the outside of the building.
Attached Thumbnails
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Old 3rd December 2008
  #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vocomotion View Post
Also Judah, if you can't get Kinetics to respond, try finding a rep near you. Check out The HUFF Company at: The HUFF Company, Inc. Home Page. I've been working with Todd Mitchell, one of the owners (it's a father/son business for like 40 years).

--> freddie
Thanks Freddie. Kinetics finally answered with their European distributor contact details and I already exchanged a few e-mail with'em. Let's see what happens.

Thanks again.
Old 3rd December 2008
  #14
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Here are some more pics of the mains panel and the two subpanels. Those subpanels are located in the area that will be in a closet at the back of the studio.

--> freddie
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Old 9th December 2008
  #15
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Irwin, our General Contractor (GC), just called to tell me he was going over to pickup our permits today! I’m meeting with Kostas (he’ll be the GC on the project) on Thursday to over the final plans. I’ll be installing the subfloors (three layers) this Saturday with a couple buddies of mine (I'm doing a bit of the construction myself, to save on costs). Then the contractors start framing up the walls next week. We’re movin’, kids!!!
Old 10th December 2008
  #16
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limestudio's Avatar
 

cool! id love to got to your studio some time !
Old 10th December 2008
  #17
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I've got wood!

The 27 sheets of 1/2″ plywood arrived today (1350lbs worth). Saturday is lining up to be a busy busy day here. We’ll be putting down the acoustic floorboard, the two layers of subfloor, and taking down the old ceiling grid (actually simultaneously). Heh...we'll see how this goes...

--> freddie
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Old 14th December 2008
  #18
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We put down the subfloor in the Control Room today. Once the subfloor is in, the contractors will take over and frame up the walls, ceiling, and do the electrical.

The subfloor has three layers: Kinetics SR acoustic floorboard (the yellow board in the photos) and 2 layers or 1/2″ plywood. Each layer has to be rotated 90-degrees from the layer below it, and all of the seams have to be staggered at least 12-inches.

The top two layers of plywood get screwed together with 7/8" screws, but the whole subfloor “floats” and is not secured to the slab below. The bowing of the plywood you might notice in the photos is only temporary. It will settle over the next few hours and will then be completely flat when we screw the two layers together.

--> freddie
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VOCOMOTION - A Cappella Studio - Construction Thread-dsc_0326.jpg  
Old 21st December 2008
  #19
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I finished all of the SR Floorboard installation today. It was a bit of a pain because I had to make cuts where the walls will go between the Control Room and the Iso-Booth and the closet. There has to be a break in the floor so that each room floats independently of the others. In the photos, you can see the white Perimeter Isolation Board that separates the rooms.

--> freddie
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Old 22nd December 2008
  #20
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Keep goin! Really likin' it so far.
Old 31st December 2008
  #21
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I spoke with Kenny, our HVAC contractor today. He called to setup a time to come take the old ductwork out of the studio space…so Friday they’re going to rip all that stuff out. Saturday, I’m finishing the subfloor layers…and Monday, the contractors will finish some last demolition and start framing the walls! Pictures to come…

--> freddie
Old 6th January 2009
  #22
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Subfloor is done. Three layers (Kinetics SR floorboard, 1/2" plywood, and 1/2" plywood). I put in 700 screws in the floor to secure the two layers of plywood together. It really locked it up. The floor is floated on the SR floorboard and is separated between the Control Room and the ISO (as seen in the pics by the white Perimeter Isolation Board).

The contractors are coming tomorrow to start the first layer of drywall over the existing walls and to start framing. I'll be out of town for the rest of the week, so I'll post pics Sunday with what they got done this week.


--> freddie
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Old 13th January 2009
  #23
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The first real week of construction (by the contractors) is done. I was actually out of town the whole week (had to attend my Grandfather’s funeral in NY), so I was a bit concerned about how much work would actually get done. My friend Bill Hare told me a story of how he kept catching the contractors playing horseshoes on his property, while building his studio. Luckily, no horseshoe pit here! I also didn’t tell the contractors about the rec-room downstairs with the pool table and pinball machine. Better if they don’t know.

They flipped the door-frame around for the door that goes out to the hallway, and they put the door back on. They also ripped down the old ceiling in the front-half of the control room. It was plaster and lathe, with some sort of false joists “supporting” it. I use that term loosely, since the ceiling was sagging anyways.

The original exterior walls didn’t go all the way up to the decking, so they started framing them all the way up. They also started putting on the layer of drywall on all the existing walls. I noticed they didn’t put drywall over segments that have outlets. I think the electrician needs to come and pull those out (they’re dead in the wall anyways).

Today they should be putting in the IsoMax clips all over the room and the resilient channel as well.

Here are some pics of what it looks like at the end of the first week…


--> freddie
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Old 14th January 2009
  #24
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The Roof! The Roof! The Roof Is…kinda leaking.

I got to the space this morning to check up on the contractors and they were there working on the walls. I did notice it big old leak in the roof, at the exterior edge of the Control Room. There’s a gutter on the roof above and it appears to be blocked and backing up. We’ve had a lot of snow and ice here lately and I guess that’ll happen. We’ve got a big garbage can underneath it right now.

The roof guy came today to patch it up...but now I'm always going to be worried that another leak in the roof is happening, above the layers of drywall and soffits we're going to have on the ceiling. Plus, the clouds, etc. Great.


--> freddie
Old 14th January 2009
  #25
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The walls are starting to take shape now. They’ve framed out the exterior wall, with one with the door that goes out to the parking lot. The window to the outside you see in the photos is being covered over (painted black, stuffed with insulation, two layers of drywall over it all).

The guys are working on framing up the wall at the back at the Control Room now. It’s taking a bit longer because we’re using heavier gauge studs on that wall. They can’t cut those studs with tin snips, as you would normally, but instead have to use a circular saw (which makes a GREAT smell).

--> freddie
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Old 14th January 2009
  #26
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Looks like the architect miscalculated a bit when it came to the ductwork that could not be removed. There is a bit of it that is now poking through the isolation wall between the Control Room and the Iso Booth. Looks like I’m going to have to get the HVAC guys back here to cut down that duct some more, so it doesn’t touch the wall.

--> freddie
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Old 14th January 2009
  #27
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And a few more pics. All the framing is done. Now they're doing the IsoMax and RC tomorrow...

--> freddie
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Old 20th January 2009
  #28
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They finished putting up all the Resilient Channel (RC) and IsoMax clips yesterday. In the photos, the RC is the horizontal steel channels you see on the walls. They are mounted to the existing walls using IsoMax clips, which decouple the next layers of drywall from the underlying wall.

Today, the contractors are boxing in the steel beam that runs through the top of the control room with three layers of drywall. You can see the uncovered beam in one of the pics here. The electrician is coming in Wednesday to do the rough electrical work and the inspection (framing/electrical) is scheduled for Thursday at 10am. On Thursday at 7am, 120 sheets of drywall are being delivered as well.

--> freddie
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Old 20th January 2009
  #29
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Keep it up!
Love those threads.
Don't think nobody is looking because of the small amount of replies
Old 21st January 2009
  #30
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Great job Freddie!
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