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DRUM STUDIO- in a school bus!! Expert help needed!
Old 4 weeks ago
Here for the gear

DRUM STUDIO- in a school bus!! Expert help needed!

Hey all! I’m an amateur builder embarking on a really exciting drum studio build for a school bus. I’ve been doing some research on the triple leaf effect, and I’ve run into a bit of an issue with my original plan. Hoping to get some expert advice on this one.

So right now I have the following already in the bus:

1. 2 in thick layer of R-13 rigid foam insulation glued directly to outer (metal) shell of bus with small wood panels to create a 1/2 air gap. (For radiant barrier)

2. Next, I screwed wood studs to the existing metal studs to get the correct spacing and screwed plywood sheeting to that. (Flush with the foam insulation)

*current state of studio*
3. (Pic included) Then, I screwed 1 in wood studs (24” apart) to the plywood and used 1 in thick cellulose soundproof insulation between the studs.

I was planning on putting up a layer of 1 LB MLV, then a layer of 5/8 drywall, decoupling it with green glue whisper clips and 7/8 hat channels, and then a final layer of 5/8 drywall with acoustical foam and bass traps on the inside.

Perhaps overkill, but I’m trying to create a highly effective soundproof space, which is of course hard to do with drums.

After reading about the triple leaf effect, I’m worried that decoupling the drywall will be useless, because of the 1/2 air gap I already created for the radiant barrier.

Essentially, I’m looking for a new plan. What do you guys think would be most effective?

Currently I’ve got about 150 sq feet of MLV, enough drywall to do a double layer in the whole studio, and a lot of green glue.

I’m also looking for a soundproofing solution for the ceiling. I was planning on doing a double layer of MLV on the ceiling since it’s curved and also has a radiant barrier air gap. I’m also thinking about headspace. The ceiling is about 6’1 and I’m 6’0.

What a predicament I’ve gotten myself into. I’m sweating just thinking about it. All help is much appreciated.
Attached Thumbnails
DRUM STUDIO- in a school bus!! Expert help needed!-84d91aff-9ab4-42b4-b09b-03796bcbd8b9.jpg  
Old 4 weeks ago
Lives for gear
I don’t have the expertise to help you. I’m not sure what your goal is. You seem to be trying to soundproof the bus. That seems impossible if you intend to have a driveable bus with windows.
Old 4 weeks ago
Lives for gear

Are you trying to deaden sound that is going to the outside only or do you want to record inside, THAT type of info helps.
Old 4 weeks ago
Here for the gear

Originally Posted by DownTheLine View Post
Are you trying to deaden sound that is going to the outside only or do you want to record inside, THAT type of info helps.
Gotcha! So I’m trying to create a practice space. I want to deaden the sound exiting the bus as much as possible. Some recording will be done inside the bus, but that’s not the main concern.

The back area of the bus will be enclosed and there are no windows in the drum studio area. It will be totally closed off with a solid core door.

I’m essentially just wondering what the most effective use of materials would be here in terms of stopping sound transmission outside the bus. How could I improve my plan?
Old 4 weeks ago
Lives for gear
Starlight's Avatar

You say soundproofing but soundproof would be 100% transmission loss and that is not going to happen so lets use the more normal term, isolation, and talk in terms of decibels.

The bus' metal body is your first leaf, the plywood sheeting is the second. Look at this image:

You have a two single leaf system, like the example on the left which has an STC of 33. Rigid foam will not do the job of (fluffy) insulation for acoustic purposes so you are not comparative to the second from left image. Also, bear in mind that the image has two drywall layers, whereas you have one metal layer (material and thickness unknown) and one plywood layer (which is less dense than drywall) so you may be below the STC of 33 but unlikely to be above.

Drums, depending on the player, usually produce around 110dB. If you were able to manage a transmission loss of 33dB then someone standing outside the bus probably hears around 77dB.

The MLV would help, if you could attach it to the coach's body (leaf 1) and also to the plywood (leaf 2). If the bus will be parked then adding drywall will increase mass and help with transmission loss. If the coach will be mobile then the seams between drywall sheets may not stay sealed and your hard work could quickly be ruined.

Your best friend will be distance. For every doubling of the distance the sound will halve (drop by 6dB). For the bus to be soundproof you need to park it a long way from where you don't want it to be heard.

If this was my bus and my drum kit and I had no other possibility, I would swap the drumheads for Remo SilentStroke heads and the replace the cymbals with Zildjian L80 (both now have cheaper imitators) as I had to to get the volume down in church (attached photo). This way the drummer produces a maximum of about 77dB and the estimated 33dB transmission loss that your current setup provides means someone standing outside the bus would hear maybe 44dB.

These are estimates but I hope you get a general picture of what you are up against. Adding MLV and, if practical, drywall, will help but overall you have a chosen a really tough challenge. All the best.
Attached Thumbnails
DRUM STUDIO- in a school bus!! Expert help needed!-2176tm2.jpg  
Old 4 weeks ago
Lives for gear
avare's Avatar

Study section 4.5 Outside Broadcast Vehicle Walls in RD 1987-01.
Attached Files
File Type: pdf 1987-01.pdf (595.9 KB, 16 views)
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