Once the basement had been prepared and painted, it really started feeling like a different space altogether. It was amazingly comfortable down there, especially after the hellscape it had been previously. Now it was time to frame....and insulate!
So while this space is definitely dedicated to making music, I also wanted to it to be practical and double as a relaxing lounge space as well. Here is the floorpan I devised from the measurements...
So a few things. Behind the diagonal wall is the furnace and water heater, so having the diagonal shape allowed me to build next to them, while also retaining enough space to make the inevitable repairs that they'll need. The small offshoot in the upper left hand corner is a pretty sizable closet. The bomb out on the right hand side is because of the basement wall support columns that jut into the room. the walls on either side are even with the inner face of the columns, but I decided to take advantage of the space between these two, because A) who doesn't want more space, and 2) it actually helps to visually define the two spaces a little. It breaks up the space from just being a giant tunnel. Basically, the lower half will be strictly music oriented, while the upper portion will be a living space that, if need be, we can spread out in to record. There are also tie lines and ethernet run between the closet and where my rack is (black rectangle in lower right hand corner) so that I can keep my amp in the closet and play guitar and record it from my desk. Because #RAWK.
This was my first time framing with aluminum studs, but I was definitely a fan! I decided to go with metal for a few reasons. Due to its moist history, I didn't want wood rotting unseen, so metal was a good choice. Also, according to Rod Gervais' Home recording Studio: Build It Like the Pros, metal studs would behave like resilient channel does when applied to wood studs. I'll take an extra added acoustic benefit where I can get it, no matter how small. Science! Metal is also flexible, which helped when encountering uneven 60 year old concrete floors. the best part about metal studs? THEY ARE SO LIGHT. I could fit a ton in my car before I ran out of room, and could carry 10 studs downstairs at a time. That would have been a much bigger task had I used wood. I think my final usage was somewhere around 40 10ft pieces of track, and about 100 8ft studs.
Starting the framing was hugely satisfying, as I could begin to see the room finally take shape. When I was done working each night, I would sit on this super comfortable giant chair (featured in the panorama above) that my dear friend Ben Robinson had bequeathed us when I was down at Full Sail, and I would stare at the room and picture how it was going to turn out and just get so excited. As if every night once I was done working was the night before Christmas and I would come down in the morning and *poof* a studio!
Here is a shot of some of the wiring. the lower run is all electrical, and the upper run is 2-pair snake cable for 2 XLR jacks going from the closet to the rack, as well as Cat6 cable for future headphone distribution possibilities. Always have to think ahead! Having pre-made pass throughs for the electrical really sped the process up. There are actually three circuits powering the studio: one for lighting, one for audio equipment electrical outlets, and one for electrical outlets that will power everything else.
a man among men