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Remote truck acoustic treatment advice
Old 3rd December 2003
Here for the gear
Dr. Cuso's Avatar

Lightbulb Remote truck acoustic treatment advice

Hi all!

I'm in the process to finish this truck.

I want to receive opinions about the best option to get good acoustic results without take too much space inside the truck (wall thickness)
The truck box is empty now, it only has the outside metallic sheet and frames, see

What I want it's see if I can use the air gap between the metallic frame and exterior metal sheet, I was planning to use some kind of Ethan DIY traps (Realtraps) directly in the metallic frame of the truck and save some space, see

Any recommendation, comments or advice to get the job done in the best way will be very appreciated.


PS. in advance I do apologize for my english I hope you get what I trying to explain.
Old 3rd December 2003
Super Moderator
Remoteness's Avatar
Beautiful -- Great pictures and descriptions.

Let's help you build this virgin truck online!

This thread can become a step by step -- string of posts.

While we ponder that idea, here are two threads (kind of) on the same subject... Sonic Isolation and a New Mobile Recording Truck

Herbie Robinson at Curbside recording has an efficient way of treating it. And I talk about undercoating the aluminum before you add your interior wall. Check out the link above for more info.

Don't confuse acoustics with isolation. Two different animals. Both need to be addressed.

Old 9th December 2003
Gear Maniac

Dr, just curious - what do you plan on fitting inside the truck in the long run?

Have you settled upon a minimum square footage required for your mobile unit after treatment?
Old 10th December 2003
Here for the gear
Dr. Cuso's Avatar

Steve, thanks for all comments! I will do my best to make this thread a good tutorial.

Wanted to ask, do you have any reference or link to a product for undercoat the metal sheet?

I have seen yellow spray to iso temperature, is it that you are referring to? or is it a plastic paint (dense)?

Jay, I'm planning to setup console (for now a Neotek) and some outboard (3 rack 24 spaces for 1U furniture) audio, video and computer monitors, furniture for cables and mic, sofa for guests, chairs operators.

Here is a plan, top view.

Would be great if you can print it or just draw over it to add some ideas or comments


Old 11th December 2003
Gear Head
Shelton's Avatar


What are your thoughts on building a rig in a vehicle other than a truck box? I've been looking into the idea of using a trailer with a slide out section. Also, what about an RV with slide out sides?

Do you think they would be looked upon as less professional if they are not in the typical 24' truck?
Old 18th December 2003
Super Moderator
Remoteness's Avatar

The yellow spray foam is not what I was talking about. The undercoat product we used is the standard undercoating material used to undercoat automobiles. Very dense stuff. I wanted to dampen the aluminum sheet and ribs before we applied the inner walls.

Since you're building your mobile recording studio from the ground up, consider the undercoating I mentioned. Then, double up the wall and ceiling thickness. In my opinion, MDF is your best alternative. You can use the (yellow) sprayed foam insulation or rockwool Fiberglas insulation behind the MDF sheets. We used rockwool for it's density and better performance in fire protection. Consider hardwoods and fabric over angel hair & rigid Fiberglas panels. But, weight is a major concern. With all the added material, you may need to upgrade the chassis' suspension. Or even consider installing an independent air ride system.


Any vehicle will do ... if it's done right.

When you said, "trailer," did you mean a small trailer that a dually would pull, or a tractor / trailer setup? Obviously, a tractor / trailer rig would rock. Small trailers and/or RV's can work if the recording system is small and compact enough to fit in there. Also, you must consider the weight issues. Proper control room isolation is a very heavy (weight) proposition. Instead of an RV, why not a motorcoach?

Expandable sides or walls are very cool, but can be a nightmare with regard to sonic isolation and such.

I personally don't look upon the RV or small trailer setup as less professional then a truck. I cannot respond on what others would think, but for me -- Being professional is more about the gear, crew and operation, then where you set it up in. I've seen too many truck operations that were not very professional. And they had all the bells and whistles. Go figure?

I've noticed that my original link is not working anymore. It was a GS search of other threads about the "remote recording design" topics. If this concerns you, click on the link and follow the instructions.

I hope this helped.
Old 19th December 2003
Here for the gear

See the "Sonic Isolation" Thread

My post about using Butyl caulking tape with foam is in a tread started by Fletcher call "Sonic Isolation". There is a bunch of other good info there.

Your truck probably has better springs than mine; so, I'm not sure I would recommend the technique here. Mass and completely isolated double walls are the things I know that reduce LF transmission.

Amoung other things, the truck will ride better if you are up near the max weight limit; although, the gas mileage may not be so great.
Old 10th January 2004
Super Moderator
Remoteness's Avatar

I found some pictures that show part of the undercoating process. You will find the original bare walls, then the completed undercoating and then the MDF sheets mounted to the ribs.

Notice the rockwool instulation and rolls of lead lining in one of the pictures. I looked for shots of the applied insulation and lead lining but I had no luck in finding them.
Attached Thumbnails
Remote truck acoustic treatment advice-aslxpandoundercoating.jpg  
Old 12th January 2004
Gear Head
Shelton's Avatar


What would you think of using spray in bed liner material as oppossed to the under coating? When my friend had his pickup bed sprayed it really killed alot of noise.

Any thoughts?
Old 14th January 2004
Super Moderator
Remoteness's Avatar

That sounds pretty cool. That material must be very dense. It should work out very well. Without any research or testing, take what I said with a grain of salt.

My gut feeling tells me it's a great idea. Applied to the entire truck body, makes for an expensive project. heh If money's no object... Wow! Great tip!

I'd look into that for your new expando, if I was you!
Old 25th January 2004
Super Moderator
Remoteness's Avatar
Bruce Havery (italysound) added an important post to my, "The 10 basic needs when designing a mobile recording unit". I wanted to expand on this idea in this thread. I thought it would be a perfect place to do it.

I also split up the original thread into two threads. The new thread is called ..."Questions about designing a mobile recording unit -- expanded"

Here's what italysound posted...

The floating floor in my mind is very important, all of the walls and ceiling must sit on the floating floor to be a true traditional recording studio. But people are cheaping out and and not considering quality. I am finding more people are setting up a live recording in a room in the back of the club or theatre thinking they can do a better job than a real remote truck.

I am not qualified to give advise on floating floors for remote trucks but I am looking for advise to build my remote truck this year.

I own a 2001 Ford E350 One ton, the box is 15.5 feet long, 7.5 feet wide and 6.75 feet high.

Right now I use the truck for Sound & lighting rentals.
I just sold my old recording truck it was a 1972 Dodge Tradesman with air shocks. This truck had no room to move. But it has been recording live shows for the last 20 years between two recording studios.

It good to get feedback from a pro.
Thanks BH
Soundman Productions
I too believe that a floating floor is very important! But, and it's a big BUT -- Can the vehicle you're using handle it? If I was you, I would reconsider using your truck. A one ton 2001 Ford E350 may not handle all the weight you want to put in it. Also, the box is a bit small for a room within a room design. What do you think? I guess you can make the 15.5 foot length work, but what about the height and width?

Well, this is a start. Let's build TWO trucks via this forum!! Anyone else want to add to this thread?

Alex (Dr. Cuso) How's your remote truck project coming along? We haven't heard from you in a while...
Old 5th September 2004
Here for the gear
Dr. Cuso's Avatar

I just want to say hi!

It is been a while since I do not post in the forum, I have been reading old post and I want to thank Steve (Remoteness) for such a great place of shared information and experience.

My remote unit still in process of construction. I have been busy taking care of my young family (4 children), and our recording studio-workshop-support business. fortunately; last weeks, I had the chance to advance the process of construction (I will post some photos in the next days or weeks).

The splitter is almost finished, our console was all restored, workstations (main and backup) are ready, air system is already installed, almost all furniture are finished. I need to finish some of the walls and paint them, and to install the floor to start setting up all recording equipment.

So, I expecting to finish the truck in one or two months, it depends on the spare time I have, but we are in final straight line (I hope so...)

Alex G.

PD, Steve, do you have some used 2 iso transformers available for sale for a reasonable price? man, these little things are expensive!!!! I was planning to leave last 8 parallel, but reading your advice to Herbie Robinson, I did think of it twice.
Old 6th September 2004
7rojo7's Avatar

I found this recently
they have industrial coatings and isolation materials
Old 14th September 2004
Gear Maniac
ClickTrackAudio's Avatar

This is a great thread.

I'm in the middle of designing a mobile, and some of these issues are exactly what I'm facing.

I've addressed most of these issues already in the design, but can you be more specific on the undercoat material you used steve? I'm having a truck body manufacture build my truck box from scratch and I'd like to specify this. I'm already aware of the weight complications, and we'll have to do some math to make sure that we're still in the right ball park, but I think the extra work will be worth it.

John Sayers is doing the acoustic design. I have access to one of the facilities he designed and it sounds and looks great. It was a no brainer to go to him...especially since he's a designer who's actually had to work in mobiles .

Anyways, we are pretty well into the design, but the undercoating idea is a very strong one...the truck vendor (he had built a few mobiles in the past) recommended a basic wall construction but the undercoat is a zero-cost benefit (by zero-cost, I mean in terms of relative wall thickness...I know the cost will be up there!).


Old 8th June 2006
Super Moderator
Remoteness's Avatar

Show us some pictures NOW!

We miss you much!
Old 8th June 2006
Lives for gear
nathanvacha's Avatar

man, I was about to post a link in case it was helpful. Then I saw that this thread is OOOOLD. Cool, though. I'd like to see those pics too.
Old 8th June 2006
Super Moderator
Remoteness's Avatar
It's still good to suggest stuff -- It helps other folks that may come across the same problems and/or situations.
Old 8th June 2006

For spray coating, there are some hot-sprayed polyurethane coatings that typically get used for concrete floors. A guy here in town is also applying it to truck beds, dump trucks and boats with good success.

It's plyable and dense - perfect for adding mass to flimsy aluminum sheeting.


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