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Flat Facing Materials

Printed From: Community Theater Green Room
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Forum Name: Polls
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Printed Date: 6/25/24 at 2:10pm
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Topic: Flat Facing Materials
Posted By: MartyW
Subject: Flat Facing Materials
Date Posted: 1/31/08 at 2:25pm
I often see set construction posts that always devolve into who uses what, so I was wondering what the averages were on the variety of flat facings used today.

Marty W

"Till next we trod the boards.."

Posted By: Ken W
Date Posted: 4/18/08 at 11:13pm
We use pretty much everything.  Most of our flats are muslin.  We have some luan or paneling, and some plywood.  We have phased out styrophome as a bad idea, since I build most of the flats.

Posted By: JoeMc
Date Posted: 4/19/08 at 1:54am
we use predominately Calico {(Muslin) [At the risk of being corrected otherwise?]}.Wink
However I have been guiding those groups who use the TV [hard]Flats, to apply unbleached calico, as a 'gesso' on the hard skin boards. [which shrinks tight - when water is applied]. this makes applying 'flame retardant' easier to the surface. Also with effecting any repairers to holes or damsage to the boards & using calico 'Dutchman'.

[western] Gondawandaland
"Hear the light & see the sound!
{may you always play to a full house!}

Posted By: sconjott
Date Posted: 5/25/08 at 1:54pm
When I arrived at my current theater, a little over a season and a half ago, I was appalled to find a large stack of sheetrock poorly toed and sliding down 'til it was a flat pile on the floor. I thought, "who in their right mind would EVER purchase sheet rock for set construction?" I have since learned that the sheetrock was a donation (and we all know what to do with donations). So, I bit my tongue and have even used it myself to save production costs, but once it comes down it goes to the trash, 'cause once there's a drill hole through it or a corner gets crushed it just crumbles into a semi fine powder . we're slowly getting back on track with Luan.
I'm curious if anyone else has ever had to use sheet rock

There are NO small roles, only small actors...

Posted By: JoeMc
Date Posted: 5/26/08 at 1:31am
I have never had to use it in theatre. Thank gawd! I had enough of gyprock walls, when I was a Sparkie on biulding sites. You only have to look at the stuff & you had to get out the 'Spakle' & repair it.
Although I got involved with a local theatre group, quite a few years ago.
Where their bloke doing the sets, a hell of a nice person. Had little or any idea of what 'we are all about'. He used everything from Dry wall Gyprock sheets, steel door frames to fibrous boards [Im sure they were asbestos sheeting].
I was conned into doing the sets for a show, and ended up, completely  rewiring the venue , to an acceptable & legal standard electrical - Just for the love of this game!
He was a painter & decorator, by trade. and every set was as though he was building a house. Mind you it always took him, the whole of the rehearsal period, to accomplish it. the sets were magnificent, but it always took about a 2 weeks of solid work to Bump Out. {If I realise it will take more than an hour to bump in or out, a basic Box set. It 's far too long "'n ah fink ah bet'ah fink it out ag'n?"}
It took me some time to get the message across to him. That the bases of stage sets, are purely of a 'Gaff' construction , completely temporary & versatile.
No wonder he ended up most times, on his Todd building them. The valuable reusable resources of people, would assist him only once, then evaporate.
it actually took over two years to finally rid the venue, of all the rubbish he had procured. as it was as useless as boobs on a bull'!
Recently I have just floated an idea, with our State theatre association. To form the Technical Advisory Pool [TAP]. To assist the member groups with technical problems, they may have.
I have been able to get a number of Techies, to volunteer, from various theatre Groups. Along with  4 Licenced Electricians, lighting/audio engineers & various others from back stage.
It is primarily only an advisory gene pool as such & I hope to rope in some of those, who have the empirical skills, but because of one reason or other, have been lost to community theatre.
Whether they be retired theatre professionals or have been burnt out, from over use in ameatre.
At present it is only a set up for groups in the metro area. But latter we hope it will be able to cover the rest of this vast State.
it took just over 2 years,
It took

[western] Gondawandaland
"Hear the light & see the sound!
{may you always play to a full house!}

Posted By: whitebat
Date Posted: 8/21/08 at 6:18pm
We have incredibly poorly framed flats, with muslin.  We've also used a bit of plain cardboard, mostly to screen stuff backstage.  We did an interactive murder mystery (single day, on site at various locations) with sets built entirely from cardboard and duct tape.  (Duct tape is too expensive... we should've used plywood or something).

Posted By: stageman 2
Date Posted: 8/22/08 at 6:44pm
We used muslin flats for years until we had a string of slam the door productions. We started using drywall which is expensive and hard to reuse but gives us a very durable and attractive set. We are now using more luan and paneling with success as we have modified the construction of the framing to a more sturdy design. 

Posted By: dmoes
Date Posted: 8/10/10 at 4:51pm
switched a few years ago to luan    works and stores better than Muslin.

    I must say that some of the older muslin flats that have had layers upon layers of paint are now just has hard as the luan  or at least it seems so!

Posted By: JoeMc
Date Posted: 8/14/10 at 8:56pm
With the hard skinned studio flats, something was suggested a while ago on the AACT public forum site. Was to skin over the hardboard with muslin [unbleeched calico] to give a better textured efect, giving the best of both worlds.
With soft door flats step them away, a few mm from adjioning flats & this will elevate shaking or movement of other flats, upon slamimng doors. 

[western] Gondawandaland
"Hear the light & see the sound!
{may you always play to a full house!}

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