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TrueDungeon
01-20-2009, 05:57 AM
I run something like a Haunted House -- but it is more like a medieval-fantasy gaming attraction for gamer nerds. We build a 20,000 s.f. "dungeon" in a fancy hotel ballroom (in 24 hours) and run it for three solid days. Then we tear it down -- and load it into two 53' trailers within 5 hours. We have scores of incredible volunteers that make this possible.

We use aluminum piping for structural support and flame retardant coroplast for the wall sheeting. Instead of going into a room and getting a scare, gamers go into a room where they are faced with a puzzle or similar challenge that must be completed to advance. There is a cool "medieval fantasy" background story, and we use many professional haunt props and animatronics to make a very unique and immersive TWO HOUR experience. There are a few startle scares, but we have never had any stability issues with our "pipe and coroplast" wall system.

The info I have learned here and by going to Transworld over the years has been extremely valuable in improving our event. I hope that you don't mind that I ask for some more advice regarding our particular needs.

This year I would like to enhance the look of a few of our rooms by using some SINGLE-SIDED 4' x 8' wood panels to provide better looking walls. We don't have to worry about gamers striking the walls (we gamers nerds are the best attendees!) so the walls can utilize less sturdy material. More important factors are weight, storage space and speed of assembly.

I am thinking of using 1/4" luan (or bathroom tile board) backed with a 2" x 2" frame to keep the weight and storage space down, but I am at a loss for the best method to "tie" the panels together. We will probably use bolts for joining the corners, but at least for the flush attachments I would rather not use a fastening system that required the use of a drill or wrench. My dream application would be done with hands only. I ruled out using a door bolt mechanism as the hardware would not allow the panels to store well and flat. Perhaps I could route out a space for the door bolting hardware, but I would rather not.

My only idea is the use of C-claps at the seams to lock them together but that would have a very low shear strength. Unless I can find a good method, I will have to go with pre-drilled holes and carriage bolts.

}}} So, does anyone have any ideas about a good fastening application for these 2" x 2" wall panels?

Lastly, I am also seeking a good method to affix the 1/4" thick substrate to the 2" x 2" frame. I don't want to use anything like screws, nails or staples as they will be plainly visible. I could perhaps use them at the top and bottom of the panel as they could be hidden with some kind of trim work, but the vast majority of the panel needs to be blemish-free.

I was thinking of using a construction adhesive, but I am generally clueless with regard to the best type to use other than good ol' Liquid Nails.

}}} So, does anyone have any ideas about a good fastening application to secure 1/4" luan or bathroom tile board to a 2" x 2" frame that would not be visible (much) from the front?

Thanks for your input and for your willingness to read this long and winding post!

Allen H
01-20-2009, 09:53 AM
Jeff, your attraction sounds fun Id love to see it sometime. Here are a few possible answers to your issues.


"Lastly, I am also seeking a good method to affix the 1/4" thick substrate to the 2" x 2" frame. I don't want to use anything like screws, nails or staples as they will be plainly visible. I could perhaps use them at the top and bottom of the panel as they could be hidden with some kind of trim work, but the vast majority of the panel needs to be blemish-free."
Wood putty over the screw heads should do the trick, if you dont use screws I would worry about such thin material warping. Heavy staples from a pnumatic stapler are often very hard to see
"I am thinking of using 1/4" luan (or bathroom tile board) backed with a 2" x 2" frame to keep the weight and storage space down, but I am at a loss for the best method to "tie" the panels together. We will probably use bolts for joining the corners, but at least for the flush attachments I would rather not use a fastening system that required the use of a drill or wrench. My dream application would be done with hands only. I ruled out using a door bolt mechanism as the hardware would not allow the panels to store well and flat. Perhaps I could route out a space for the door bolting hardware, but I would rather not."
I would suggest drilling holes through the 2x2's and using heavy duty zip ties to hold them fast. They are cheap and strong. I use them every year to hold temporary fencing in place and they work great. The big ones are used for HVAC work.
Good luck, Allen

Jim Warfield
01-20-2009, 06:22 PM
Line them up, slip in the pin. Pull out the pin, take them apart.
Carnival booths used this forever.

I have used luan over 2 by 2's for years even slightly stressing it to make gradual curves, lots of fun! Adds a variation versus straight and flat.
I use screws drilling them in deep enough to sink the screwhead, then use Elmer's Carpenter's putty to smooth it up, let it dry, sand lightly, paint.
Tell Luan I still think about her when you see her.

TrueDungeon
01-22-2009, 08:52 PM
Thanks Jim. Good tips.

And Luan says she has a little surprise for you named "Jimboard".