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Thread: My experience and little review of Auralex foam. Argh.

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    My experience and little review of Auralex foam. Argh.

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    My toxic smelling area: (Auralex behind speaker monitors)


    Ok so the regular posters here probably caught that I bought some Auralex from MusiciansFriend when they had it for the stupid deal of the day. Which by-the-way really wasn't cause its still the same price. F-ing punks.

    I bought this in an attempt to save time, energy, and money so I didnt have to DIY my own acoustic panels with Roxul Mineral Wool or Owens Corning 703/705. I wanted something that would come ready and just hang up. Boy was I in for a surprise. (BTW, I have 3 703 bass trap panels in this space already)

    Everyone warned me that they really only work for higher frequencies and some mid range and very poorly on low frequencies. Trying to save money and time because I dont have much time these days... So, I went ahead and foamed the small wall behind my mixing station. Let me tell you about my experience.

    Since I rent and I can't ruin the walls and I ain't about to rehang drywall when I leave. Plus I didnt feel like trying to mess with velcroing every 12" piece of auralex etc. etc. I bought a 1/2" piece of MDF and cut it to size, beveled the edges, painted just the edges black, screwed it to the studs, and started putting up the 2" designer auralex foam using the Auralex Tubetak that came with the kit. I figure when I leave I'll just toss it all. Only spent $70 with shipping.

    I have to say I am disappointed with the results. The sound dampening is ok, I'd say about half of what 703 woulda done just from gauging with my ears.. But the tubetak absolutely sucks. ABSOLUTELY SUCKS! It does work for glue but read on. This stuff is very difficult to work with. Hard as ever to get out of the tube. AND the toxic smell it delivers is REDICULOUS!!! No wonder the package from MusiciansFriend comes with 2 free tubes! You HAVE to give it away.

    Its cold in Wisconsin. For two days I had a window open in this small room, fans blowing air in, blowing air out, smell is still there. Then I decided maybe its because its not drying. Tried the opposite approach. Closed window and put a household heater on the foam area for the next two days. In the words of my 2 year old, still stanks!

    I so regret wasting time money and energy on this "cool" looking foam that I cant even bare to be in the room with without getting nauseous and feeling sick. So if the smell doesn't come out soon looks like I'm taking it down and throwing it all away. Fun right?

    I guess the bottom line is not dissing the Auralex foam necessarily but Auralex's TubeTak glue. Rediculous! Dont use it! No wonder the instructions DONT mention it. They give instructions for their spray can glue. No idea how that works though, probably just as toxic smelling. And for the amount of time it took and a little more money than I spent I could have built all DIY Mineral Wool Panels I needed.

    If anyone uses this foam ATLEAST DO NOT use the TUBETAK sh*t! Plus no matter what the instructions tell you its hard as f-ck to cut. Electric knife my ars. I had to use a household pair of scissors!

    QUESTION: The foam is glued to a 1/2" piece of MDF covering the whole (small) wall. If I take the foam off, would it help to keep the MDF on the wall with mineralwool panels? I know its not how studios are built, but would it help to have something thicker then just drywall behind my monitors? So drywall and MDF wood.

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    So I used the glade plugin with two cansters that you see on tv and it seems to be working pretty good so far. hopefully it takes over the odor. Or bonds to whatever the other odor bonded to and eventually this goes away....

    lol a lesson is odors... weird.

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    A great alternative for hanging stuff like that is silicone adhesive caulk that you can pick up at Home Depot for about $2-$3 per tube.

    I've hung 2'x4' acoustic ceiling tiles...and with them, the trick was to just support them in place for about an hour (which I did with extended mic stands and pieces of cardboard) just so the silicone adhesive starts to set.

    Plus...silicone adhesive doesn't really stick permanently like liquid nails or other similar stuff. IOW...you can pretty much scrap it off of drywall even with a simple paint scraper, yet it holds many things in place as well as stronger adhesives....and NO toxic fumes.

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    I glue mounted my foam (not Auralex) on 2'x4' 1/4" boards which I then put on the walls using 2 standard screw/wallboard plugs.

    I used Arlene's FOAMTASTIC glue that you can find in any sewing/crafts shop.
    About $4 a bottle and one bottle did more than my 48 one-foot squares.
    Doesn't take much, you only need to put a couple of squiggles across each tile.

    It looks like white glue but dries to a rubbery clear that really holds the foam. In three years I've only had a couple of tiles come down and that was because I didn't put enough glue on them. Dries very quickly... then ones I replaced I just held for a few minutes and the tack was enough to hold them for the glue to completely dry.

    Darn good stuff and DOESN'T SMELL....

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    Live and learn, right? If that's the biggest money-wasting mistake you ever make you'll be really, really lucky. For example, I refinanced a house with one of those fly-by-night mortgage resellers who prey on military guys (back when I was in the military)...I'll take $200 of Auralex over that any day. I'm *still* paying for that mistake 10 years later.

    Frank
    Frank

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    Im sorry to hear that weasel! Thanks for your sympathy, heh. Yeah live and learn I guess.

    And I thought hanging panels was time consuming lol.

    I need to focus more on production now anyway because its irritating not being able to do the effects you want and get the sound you want.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ThaArtist View Post
    Im sorry to hear that weasel! Thanks for your sympathy, heh. Yeah live and learn I guess.

    And I thought hanging panels was time consuming lol.

    I need to focus more on production now anyway because its irritating not being able to do the effects you want and get the sound you want.
    Word. Make the best of it you can and add treatment as time and budget allow. People do good work in imperfect rooms all the time, so don't let it stop you.

    Frank
    Frank

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    So the area finally is breathable a week later and 32 hours of glade plugins lol.

    Slowly the smell is leaving. But wow that glue is rediculous for smell. Still bothers my big german polish nose slightly. l0l

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    Quote Originally Posted by ThaArtist View Post
    Still bothers my big german polish nose slightly. l0l
    ...my wife has one of those.

    Frank
    Frank

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    Maybe it's just the fumes, but there's no "e" in ridiculous.

    I bought 2 boxes of the auralex foam from the same "stupid deal of the day". I bought a couple pieces of 20" x 40" foam board at an arts and crafts store, and made 2' x 3' panels using the included glue. The foam panels hang off the edges, creating a very small gap, and no edges of the foam board are visible.

    The glue did stink for awhile, but the smell is entirely gone now. I guess it was last weekend that I made the panels, and last night (6 days later) I was in the room for about 2 hours and there was no odor.

    Maybe it has to do with the climate? It's been raining non-stop and cold in Northern VA for the last 3 weeks. I don't know what the humidity is, but I would presume that it's cold and damp. The furnace has been running.

    I haven't mounted the panels on the wall yet, but having them in the room has definitely dampened the flutter echo. My room has approximately 10.5' ceilings and is almost square. I have already hung felt curtains on two adjacent walls.

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