Studio Build: Garage Conversion in Los Angeles

Document your build here: All about your walls, ceilings, doors, windows, HVAC, and (gasp!) floated floors...
Jag94
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Studio Build: Garage Conversion in Los Angeles

#76

Postby Jag94 » Thu, 2021-Jan-14, 03:22

Update time. It's been about a month since I last updated, but that's just because I've been working my ass off to get this thing finished. I still have a long way to go, but I'm getting close. I'm making good progress and more importantly, I'm really happy with the way this thing is turning out so far. I'll explain why as I go.

Before I get started, I just have to share this exchange with my wife.

I was installing the first layer of OSB in the interior leaf and she walks in to see the progress. Keep in mind this is about month 6 or 7, and I had been out there working on this thing nearly every day for those 6-7 months. So she knows what I've been doing, even if she doesn't understand it and constantly asks... "is this really necessary?". As I was putting up the last piece, she says... "Once you're done and the room is finished, no one is going to know all the stuff you did under the drywall." I looked at her, nodded, and continued. Then I said... "I'll know."

It's been a wild ride. But we're not done yet!

Anyway - progress update.

Next up was continuing the first layer of drywall on all 4 walls. I used a dremel with a drywall cutting bit and circle cutting jig to cut the wholes for the HVAC flex ducts penetrating through the north wall.

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Once the first layer was in, I backer rod and caulked the entire perimeter, and started on the 2nd layer.

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2nd Layer

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Again, I backer rod and caulked the perimeter. This room is sealed tight. The amount of caulking I used on this project is ridiculous. But I'm really hoping that it'll be worth it.

Also, I think I used about 120+ tubes of green glue for this whole project. I bought way more than I needed. I somehow way over estimated, but I was able to sell the leftovers for about the same price I bought it for, so no harm done. I did 3 tubes per sheet of drywall. This is what Green Glue recommends, although they say 2 tubes is fine, and even 1 tube will do something, but you get more isolation with the more you use. While reading about green glue, it turns out that if you use more than 3 tubes, you continue to improve isolation. They just set the recommendation at 3 because they felt like that was a reasonable amount, instead of just saying, buy as much as you can afford... lol. Again, I'm hoping it was worth it.


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Next up was tape and mud. I have never taped and mudded an entire room before, I've only patched holes, so I was very hesitant to do this myself. I had 3 different contractors come give me a quote to do the room, and the prices ranged between $600 - $1200. As I'm already over budget, I decided to tackle it myself, and for less than $100 in materials, I went at it. I watched a series of videos by a guy on youtube (who has hundreds of videos and really shows the details for these types of things), and it really helped. It took me about a week to get all 3 coats on, so while it took me a lot longer than a pro would have taken, I was EXTREMELY happy with the results.

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I sanded the entire room, and applied the primer coat. I learned that there is a different type of primer for brand new drywall/mud & tape (never been painted), and when I first painted it, it was extremely streaky and you could see all the mud under it. I put that first coat on at the end of the night, so I let it dry over night. When I came back in the morning, I was SHOCKED at how well the room looked. It was perfect.

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I was really happy and quite proud of the corners of the room. They came out as close to perfect as they could get. Too bad they're going to get covered up with super chunks!

Next up was painting the color of the studio. My wife wanted a light color because the room is kind of small, but I wanted a "warm" color. I found this color that has a brown/red/orange mix to it, and I really like it. I can't wait to see it with warm track lighting overhead.

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Jag94
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Studio Build: Garage Conversion in Los Angeles

#77

Postby Jag94 » Thu, 2021-Jan-14, 03:49

Next up was the floor. I put down a 6mil plastic to cover the concrete, and then a cork underlayment. As for the floors - oh boy. I actually bought a floor, and brought the floor with me to home depot to pick out colors. The floor was pretty dark, and I thought I liked it in the store. When I started laying it out in the room, I HATED it. So I packed it back up (luckily I only opened one box, and didn't make any cuts), and I brought it back. I picked a lighter color that I really like. I don't think I have any pictures of the floor yet, but you might see it in some of the pictures later on.

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Next up was the door frame/doors. I have been stressing over this, because at this point, this could make or break the whole studio. Someone posted a pdf on how to build studio doors by John Brandt (I can't remember who), but it had a LOT of useful tidbits in it. The first of which, was the topic covering the gap between the inner/outer leafs at the rough framing of the door opening. I hadn't thought anything about this until I read it, and it made sense. So I bought the rubber stuff, caulked both frames, and installed it.

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It looks clean, and now the rough frame is ready for a door jamb. I went to my local lumber yard and bought 6/4" poplar. I measured 4 times, and cut the frame to size. I used pocket holes to construct the jamb around the door. I ripped 1/8" and 1/16" spacers so that the door jamb would be EXACTLY the correct size for the door.

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One issue I had though, was the 6/4" lumber I used, was slightly larger than 1 1/4". I didn't account for this when making the jamb, so when I went to put the jamb in the door frame, it was SUPER TIGHT. I guess I framed my doorway so well, that I didn't leave any wiggle room. This could have been really bad if the frame wasn't perfectly plumb, square and level... but because of my extreme diligence, it turns out the rough framing was basically perfect. When I finally wedged the door jamb in place, the entire thing was already plumb. I didn't have to use a single shim. I couldn't believe it. I also primed and painted the jamb before I installed it.

I didn't take any pictures of this, but you'll see it when I show the door.

As for the door, I painted the interior side the same color as the room, and I installed a 3/4" MDF panel to the exterior side, and painted that side black. The I mortised the hinges using a router, and a door hinge template. It made the entire process SUPER easy. I was really nervous about the hinges, so I mortised the hinges on the door jamb about 1/16" bigger on both sides in case I needed a little play the door when hanging it.

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I had 2 buddies come over to help hang the door. The bigger/stronger friend held the door in place while I aligned and screwed in the hinges to the frame, and the other friend (who is a native Italian) just stood there telling us how bad of a job we were doing. I would expect nothing less from an Italian. :lol:

I only screwed in the top and bottom hinge into the jamb, and then tested the door. I closed my eyes, and slowly closed the door, praying to the studio building gods that this worked. And holy $h!t the door closed perfectly. It didn't snag or rub on any part of the door frame. The top, bottom, and latch side of the door have a nearly perfect 1/8" gap, and the hinge side has a perfect 1/16" gap. I was shocked. I screwed in all the other hinges and laid on the ground thanking the heavens that it worked.

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I used heavy duty ball bearing commercial grade hinges. They were a bit more expensive than the standard hinges you can get at your local hardware store, but DAMN are these things smooth. I also installed 6 hinges, instead of the normal 3. Since this door weighs about 200 pounds, I wanted to make sure the hinges would hold this thing up. I also bought a commercial heavy duty door closer that is rated for doors that are 300 pounds, I just haven't installed it yet.

Oh, one thing about installing hinges. I found this amazing drill bit for drilling pilot holes for door hinges. It is spring loaded, and has a large rounded head that seats in the screw hole of the hinge, so that it drills a perfectly centered hole EVERY SINGLE TIME. I think this helped me when installing the hinges and making sure they were perfect. It looks like this... DRILL BIT

If you're doing door hinges, I HIGHLY recommend this bit. It was a game changer.



Jag94
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Studio Build: Garage Conversion in Los Angeles

#78

Postby Jag94 » Thu, 2021-Jan-14, 04:03

Next up is the construction and installation of my silencer boxes. I designed these a few months ago, and I knew the dimensions were "big", but I didn't realize HOW big until I actually constructed the damn things. They're HUGE! But that's the point, right? I had so much OSB left over, that I used those instead of MDF. Since these are going inside the room, and being mounted on the floor, i decided to make the extremely mass loaded. So they will be 3 layers, OSB>green glue>drywall>green glue>drywall... the same as my walls.

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I used pocket holes to assemble everything, and these things are really well built.

Oh, my wife got me a pocket hole jig for christmas, and it's been absolutely wonderful. I love it. But now I have to build her all sorts of stuff with it. I guess that's what I get.

I also got to use my home made router hole cutting jig again to make the holes in the OSB.

I caulked all of the edges, and dry-fitted them in place in the room. I had to add some shims under them so that the hole that penetrates the inner leaf lines up with the hole in the silencer box. You can barely tell in the photos, and once everything is done and baseboards are in, nobody will know the difference except for me. I put the bottom two layers of drywall on first, accounting for the extra layers that will need to go on as I close the box up (after duct liner is put in).

I caulked around the perimeter of the boxes, as well as the back of the box before I pushed it up against the wall, and screwed it in. Then I put added duct connectors to the two openings on each box, and added the top two layers of drywall. The next couple of days I'll be putting the side layers on, putting in the duct liner, and closing the boxes up.

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Next up I will be installing the door seals and door stops for the interior door. My exterior door has not arrived yet, but when it does, I need to go through the same process for that door as well (building the jambs, mortising the hinges, hanging the door, etc).

My wife is due to deliver our first child in about 10 days, so my free time is going to be pretty limited, but I'll update what I can when I can.



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Starlight
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Studio Build: Garage Conversion in Los Angeles

#79

Postby Starlight » Thu, 2021-Jan-14, 04:40

It seems your measuring, your precision and your dedication have paid off big time. I am so pleased for you. If I was going to write a textbook, yours would be the photos I would want to use.

Congratulations also on the imminent new family member!



SoWhat
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Studio Build: Garage Conversion in Los Angeles

#80

Postby SoWhat » Thu, 2021-Jan-14, 15:38

Greetings Jag94,

What a beautiful job! Thanks for all the photos! The one of the Green Glue tubes is wonderful simply on an aesthetic level.

Now I HOPE you're making the new baby's furniture...

All the best,

Paul



Jag94
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Studio Build: Garage Conversion in Los Angeles

#81

Postby Jag94 » Thu, 2021-Jan-14, 15:50

Starlight wrote:Source of the post It seems your measuring, your precision and your dedication have paid off big time. I am so pleased for you. If I was going to write a textbook, yours would be the photos I would want to use.


Lol, I wouldn't go that far! But thanks for the sentiment.

Congratulations also on the imminent new family member!


Thank you! We're really excited. I'm just trying to figure out how I can make sure the baby's first picture will have a drumstick in his hand. :lol:

SoWhat wrote:What a beautiful job! Thanks for all the photos! The one of the Green Glue tubes is wonderful simply on an aesthetic level.

Now I HOPE you're making the new baby's furniture...

All the best,

Paul


Thanks Paul. My wife yelled at me for wasting so much time stacking the tubes of green glue. But i wanted a clear representation of how much of that stuff I used! haha.

Uhh... about the furniture.... :oops:



SoWhat
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Studio Build: Garage Conversion in Los Angeles

#82

Postby SoWhat » Thu, 2021-Jan-14, 18:07

My wife yelled at me for wasting so much time stacking the tubes of green glue.


When I stack mine, I think I'll be in the clear since I'm building my wife's studio first. ;)



garethmetcalf
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Studio Build: Garage Conversion in Los Angeles

#83

Postby garethmetcalf » Fri, 2021-Jan-15, 08:06

Wow these are great pictures and it’s wonderful to see that bit where a construction site turns into a room.
Fantastic work on all of this. Have you done any tests yet to see what the isolation is like? Given the attention to detail with caulk and backer rod plus the nearly friction fit door I should imagine it’s going to be pretty awesome isolation!

Somewhere to get a quiet nap maybe?!!

Gareth



Jag94
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Studio Build: Garage Conversion in Los Angeles

#84

Postby Jag94 » Fri, 2021-Jan-15, 19:14

garethmetcalf wrote:Source of the post Wow these are great pictures and it’s wonderful to see that bit where a construction site turns into a room.
Fantastic work on all of this. Have you done any tests yet to see what the isolation is like? Given the attention to detail with caulk and backer rod plus the nearly friction fit door I should imagine it’s going to be pretty awesome isolation!

Somewhere to get a quiet nap maybe?!!

Gareth


I have not done any tests yet. The door was just put up, so until then, there was a 39"x83" hole in the wall which would make isolation a little difficult. :lol: As soon as I get the seals up on the first door, and the silencer boxes closed up, i'll start doing tests.



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Starlight
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Studio Build: Garage Conversion in Los Angeles

#85

Postby Starlight » Sat, 2021-Jan-16, 04:57

Jag94 wrote:Source of the post... my wife got me a pocket hole jig for christmas, and it's been absolutely wonderful.
Could you show us (or point us to) which type of pocket hole jig you got? There seem to be many choices and the popular blue one I ordered but never arrived gets a lot of negative comments so I have hesitated to order again.



Jag94
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Studio Build: Garage Conversion in Los Angeles

#86

Postby Jag94 » Sat, 2021-Jan-16, 19:31

Starlight wrote:Could you show us (or point us to) which type of pocket hole jig you got? There seem to be many choices and the popular blue one I ordered but never arrived gets a lot of negative comments so I have hesitated to order again.


I got this one. https://www.rockler.com/kreg-jig-k4-poc ... FgQAvD_BwE

Kreg makes 3 versions. This is the middle version. The more expensive one than this is like a full tabletop version that I don't think would have been great for me. This one is perfect, because it can be taken apart and used in tight spaces as well. Worth every penny.



Jag94
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Studio Build: Garage Conversion in Los Angeles

#87

Postby Jag94 » Sun, 2021-Jan-17, 19:26

Question about duct liner. I was going to use spray adhesive to attach the duct liner to the inside of the boxes. I started looking at spray adhesives and there are SO many, and ranging in price from like $6-$30 a can. Is there any specific type I should be using for duct liner? Or will any spray adhesive work?



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Starlight
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#88

Postby Starlight » Sun, 2021-Jan-17, 21:06

An alternative to gluing is to staple them, as shown in 3 photos in my build, post 56. Stapling only at the edges means it is full depth all over except the inch at each edge. I know you have a staple gun.



Jag94
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Studio Build: Garage Conversion in Los Angeles

#89

Postby Jag94 » Sun, 2021-Jan-17, 23:57

Starlight wrote:Source of the post An alternative to gluing is to staple them, as shown in 3 photos in my build, post 56. Stapling only at the edges means it is full depth all over except the inch at each edge. I know you have a staple gun.


Oh interesting. I was worried staples might rip/damage the duct liner. Maybe I'll just do that. That sounds easier and cleaner anyway. Thanks for the tip!



garethmetcalf
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Studio Build: Garage Conversion in Los Angeles

#90

Postby garethmetcalf » Mon, 2021-Jan-18, 09:08

Hi
I used spray glue to do mine last night, and it gets everywhere! I just used whatever I could buy, and supplemented that with those round discs like Tom did on his build - post 92 on this page: viewtopic.php?t=32&start=90

I only used a few, though.

Cheers
Gareth




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