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projection screen fabric

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When you’re looking to purchase a new projector screen, then there are some things that you’ll want to think about first. Getting the right size screen is important, as well as the method it uses to stand up or retract. But, you should also consider what fabric and material the screen is made out of.

If you want a truly good experience with your projector, then using the right screen fabric with it is essential. But what is the best fabric to use for a screen projector? Well, we’re going to look at some of the fabrics that you can use with a projector screen to give the best experience.

Which fabric is best for a projector screen?

If you’re looking for the best fabric for a projector screen, then the right answer is to use a white blackout cloth. You can pick this up for a very reasonable price, and you can can even choose to paint your blackout cloth to create an even better experience.

You can usually pick up this kind of blackout cloth online, or from your local hardware store. Getting the right cloth is important for your picture quality. Plus, if you make it yourself, you’ll need to put in some effort to get the right aspect ratio.

Though I think it’s the best, this isn’t the only material that you can use as a projector screen. So, let’s look at some of the best options out there so you can find the right one to suit you.

Blackout Cloth

If you’ve ever worked the night shift, then you’ll know what material I’m referring to here. It’s the same material used for blackout curtains, and it’s designed to specifically keep out light – it’s made from cotton and polyester. It also works really well as a projector screen, as it’s non reflective and it can be viewed from any angle.

As I also mentioned, you can actually choose to add some paint to your blackout cloth to give it an even better appearance. Whilst you could do this with a roller, it’s probably a better idea to use some spray paint on the cloth. You also might want to use some primer too, which should give you an even better finish.

If you’re looking to make your own projector screen, then this isn the best material to use. However, there are other options out there too that can work as a makeshift fabric for your projector. One good idea is to use roller blinds, which can make for a good projector screen material.

Paint/Wall

Although the majority of the time you’re going to want to use a sort of fabric as your screen, there’s also another alternative which has no fabric at all. I’m talking about using paint as the screen itself, as you can get specially made paint that’s designed specifically for projecting images onto it.

The colour that you use for the paint is going to be important. Most people tend to opt for a white colour as you’d expect. You can also look at going for a black or grey colour too, and it will all depend on the time and ambience of the room when you’re going to use the projector.

You’ll also have to consider the style of the paint you’re using as well. If you use matte paint, then the picture can be a little dark and there will be no vibrancy in the image. On the other hand, if you use glossy paint, then it is going to be too reflective.

From a negative perspective, with a wall you’re not going to have complete control over how smooth the surface is. A screen is very smooth, but your wall may have little bumps and nicks in it that may effect the quality of your viewing.

Other Options

These are the best options for those looking for a DIY solution. But, there are other materials out there you can use, and that are used by larger companies making screens professionally. Here are a few of them.

Plastic – A common surface for a screen can just be ordinary plastic. This is because the material use as the surface isn’t as important as the coating on the display itself. This is one of the most cost effective solutions.
Metal – Although nowhere near as common, another material that is used for projector screens is metal. This is mainly with low lumen projectors, and not those made for commercial use.
Fibreglass – For those looking for an increase in quality in comparison to plastic, then you can also find screens that are made of fibreglass. They’re a good choice if you want something that will last.
PVC – You will also find projector screens out there made from PVC. However, they’re nowhere near as common as plastic projector screens.

Conclusion

In conclusion, the best option if you’re looking for a good material to use as a projector screen is a type of blackout cloth. This fabric isn’t particularly expensive, and can easily be used to create a DIY projector screen.

The thing is with DIY screens is that they can take a little while to make, and if you’re not entirely sure on the colour screen you need, this can make it even more difficult.

Of course, you could also avoid creating your own DIY screen and opt to purchase one ready made. Nowadays, screens are more reasonably priced than ever, and you might even be able to get one for not much more than it would cost to do it yourself.

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The main difference between laminates and PVC coated material is in how the components are held together. Laminate material is held together by fusing or rolling a top and bottom material around the base cloth, simply fusing the laminate coating layers to each other through the open spaces of the base cloth. PVC coating, however, is bonded to the base fabric by using a special adhesive process.The first step in this process is to spread a high strength adhesive in and around each base cloth thread. Then the PVC coated material, which is in a liquid state, is spread over the glue. Finally they are all fused together using heat and pressure.

When you polled most professionals in the tent rental industry, the majority answer would be cost. As it turns out, cost is only a result of the overall equation that is too often the ending point for many conversations on the subject. The primary difference in these fabrics rests in the method of the application of the vinyl to the base fabric. The results of these two construction methods each have their own benefits and drawbacks.
pvc coated material

Laminated PVC is composed of a base polyester scrim that is placed between two or more layers of PVC film. These multiple layers of material in huge roll form are fused together in a PVC Laminating machine using extreme pressure and heat to create one solid piece of fabric. Often opaque layers and adhesives are additionally used to attain desired specifications. The formed material is passed over rollers to create the desired finished appearance (i.e. glossy, matte, etc.). The thickness of the raw PVC film on each side of the scrim added to the base fabric (scrim) result in a desired finished weight can add to its performance under Ultraviolet (UV) conditions (on the top side of the laminate) and abrasion resistance (on the bottom side of the laminate).

As a result of the application of a consistent layer/thickness of film on each side of the fabric, the film will fill into the hills and valleys of the base fabric creating a rougher texture (usually on the back side of the fabric). The narrower the openings of the mesh (base fabric) causes a reduction in the depth of the hills and valleys to fill and result a smoother the final appearance of the finished product. Unfortunately, the narrower the openings in the base fabric will in turn decrease the adhesion of the film to itself resulting in “delamination” or poor welding performance. Increasing the thickness of the PVC film will also result in a smoother product but will also add more weight to the finished fabric

Most all vinyl used in the construction of tents is inherently flame retardant, meaning that no additional flame retardant treatment is ever necessary during the lifetime of the fabric. Laminated fabrics are commonly used in the following weights: 12oz/sqyd, 16oz/sqyd, 18oz/sqyd and can be fabricated in any range from 10oz to 28oz.

PVC coated material is composed of a similar base polyester fabric that is passed through molten liquid vinyl and then extruded (or shaved) down to the desired thickness. As with laminated fabrics the coated formed material is passed over rollers to create the desired finished appearance. The resulting fabric is generally smoother on both sides when compared to laminate PVC. The thickness of the raw PVC film on each side of the scrim added to the base fabric (scrim) result in a desired finished weight can add to its performance under Ultraviolet (UW) conditions (on the top side of the laminate) and abrasion resistance (on the bottom side of the fabric).

The result of the extrusion or shaving of the PVC to the base fabric creates a PVC layer that is contoured to the base fabric, filling the valleys with PVC while the exposed surface remains very smooth.

Most all vinyl used in the construction of tents is inherently flame retardant meaning that no additional treatment is ever necessary during the lifetime of the fabric. PVC coated material are commonly used in the following weights: 18oz/sqyd, 20oz/sqyd, 24oz/sqyd and can be fabricated in any range from 16oz/sqyd to 32oz/sqyd.

Benefits & Draw Backs:

Laminated Fabrics:
Benefits
• Lower cost
• Greater availability (Domestic Production)
• Greater color selection
• Less stringent parameters for special order runs (often around 500yd minimums)
• Higher strength to weight ratio-Both tensile and tear strengths
• Most domestic patterning is based on 61” width goods (all manufacturers)

Drawbacks
• Rougher under side of fabric, less easy to clean
• Less resistance to pin holes (as a result of less PVC in the fabric)
• Less pliable with age (as a result of less PVC in the fabric)

Coated Fabrics:
Benefits
• Smoother finish (easier to clean)
• High tensile strength
• Greater durability
• Greater resistance to pinholes
• More pliable in cold weather conditions

Drawbacks:
• Higher cost – (weak Dollar, transportation, lead time, etc.)
• No domestic production
• Stringent parameters for special order runs (often around 5500yd minimums)
• Very few color options
• Fewer weights to choose from
• Weaker tear strength

Anti static air ducting

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Antistatic PVC is used for products where surfaces require the reduction or elimination of the build-up of static electricity to avoid damage resultant from the static electrical charges. The role of the anti-static agent is to make the surface of the material itself slightly conductive. Static dissipative PVC is used in varied applications, the most popular being in static electric sensitive areas, electronic manufacturing, industry and mining.

Anti static air ducting

PVC is an ethylene – based polymer, its material is a non – crystalline material. PVC materials are often used with stabilizers, lubricants, auxiliary processing agents, color materials, shock absorbers and other additives. It has non-flammability, high strength, weather resistance and good geometrical stability. PVC has strong resistance to oxidants, reducing agents and strong acids. However, it can be corroded by concentrated oxidizing acids such as concentrated sulfuric acid and concentrated nitric acid and is not suitable for contact with aromatic hydrocarbons and chlorinated hydrocarbons.

Anti static air ducting

 

Application:

  • Equipment cover, dust-free box, test fixture, dust-free room and other places that need antistatic treatment.
  • Confined space air changing 
  • Ventilating tasks & vessels prior to entry 
  • General ventilation 
  • Blowing or extracting air
  • In combination with Heater to provide warm air
  • In combination with Filter Unit to provide clean air

PTFE coated fiberglass advantages

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Durability benefits of PTFE coated fiberglass

  • Lifespan exceeding 30 years
  • Can withstand temperatures of -100 F to +450 F (-73 C to +232 C)
  • Tensile strength of 500,000 PSI (more than 10 times the tensile strength of steel)
  • Chemically inert
  • Weather-resistant
  • Resistant to micro-organisms
  • Moisture-resistant
  • Immune to UV degradation
  • Resists the build-up of environmental pollution
  • Does not discolor over time
  • Does not become brittle over time

Environmental benefits of PTFE coated fiberglass

  • Energy Star rated
  • Cool Roof Rating Council certified
  • PTFE coated fiberglass membranes reflect up to 73% of solar heat and hold only 7% on their exterior surface
  • PTFE coated fiberglass provides thermal insulation to a degree similar to conventional glazing
  • U value of approximately 4.0-5.0 for a single-layer application
  • High shading coefficient, resulting in energy savings over traditional glass glazing

Lighting benefits of PTFE coated fiberglass

  • Highly transparent
  • It allows natural daylight to reach the people below while also providing shading
  • It is translucent, but still screens out ultraviolet rays and excess heat
  • Reflects 75% of sunlight
  • Absorbs 10% of sunlight
  • Transmits 15% of sunlight

Maintenance benefits of PTFE coated fiberglass

  • Regularly self-cleaning with rainwater
  • A manual clean every 2-5 years is recommended, but because the fabric strength can support human weight, this can be done easily with jet-washers or soft brushes and access to the roof
  • No internal cleaning required
  • PTFE coated fiberglass installs in a buff color and bleaches to a bright white with sun exposure, so the structure self-maintains a bright white appearance over time

Safety benefits of PTFE coated fiberglass

  • US Fire-Rated Noncombustible ASTM E-136, Class A Smoke ASTM E-84, Burning Brand E-108, CSFM Title 19, Pass NFPA 701
  • Inherently non-flammable
  • Class 1 rating in surface spread of flame testing
  • UK Class 0 performance in BS476 pt6 fire propagation tests

Design benefits of PTFE coated fiberglass

  • Flexible
  • Lightweight (approximately 0.3 pounds per square foot, or 1.5kg per square meter)
  • Single panels can be fabricated in almost any size and shape
  • Large spans can be reinforced with structural cables
  • PTFE coated fiberglass has highly elastic properties (10.5 x 106 PSI modular elasticity)
  • It does not significantly expand or shrink under stress
  • It provides a significant degree of noise absorption and sound attenuation
  • PTFE coated fiberglass can support up to 1,000 pounds per square inch (18 kg per mm)
  • It can become a stage for beautiful and dramatic lighting effects
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