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JonH's Simulator

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  • JonH's Simulator

    Hello all.

    My simulator is finally up and running, just in time for winter. I want to thank all the forum members who helped out with answering my questions and DBgolf for the impact screen. I ended up with a Foresight Sports GC Hawk and it's awesome. My daughter helped me with making a it's called and I invite anyone to go and see it. There's lots of pics and also a parts page with links to all the parts that I put into the build. After the pics, there's a (long) diary about the adventures in getting this thing finished.

    If there's any questions, please ask away. I would be happy to help out anyone that I can.

    Thanks again to the forum and the members.
    Jon in American Fork

  • #2
    Very well done! I love the blog and all the detail. Just a really great job. Looks like you thought of everything. Interesting process to level the sub floor.


    • #3
      Nice build and write up.


      • #4
        Awesome build and write up too. I am surprised the projector fell short.


        • #5
          Nice job and enjoy! Smart choice by going with the fiberbuilt imo ... I’m dealing with golfers elbow because of a thin mat and getting a prp injection to (hopefully) heal it.


          • #6
            Thanks for all the nice comments. It was a fun 'trip' seeing all my ideas come together and actually work.

            Leveling the sub-floor was my BIL's idea with respect to the technique. We were first just going to get it a little close. But once we set everything up, the laser made it super easy to get it real close. It probably took about 90 minutes to do the whole area.

            I'm also disappointed with the projector part. I just read about some possible settings within FSX that I'm going to try. And then there's always Reshade (which will be a lot of reading first) . But if I cannot get any improvement, I'm perfectly okay with the way that it is.

            The mat was a big decision point for me. I also didn't want to injure myself and the stories I read about members who went with another brand other than Fiberbuilt, got hurt, THEN got the FB and wished that they did that the first time pushed me in the FB direction.

            And with respect to the whole build, I tried real hard to get the best item, part or piece that my budget would allow. I REALLY didn't want to have a version 1.1, 1.2, etc. (PLUS having to get rid of the old parts). In the end, I had to 'borrow' from the house to finish a couple small things. My wife took pity on me and donated to my sim fund.

            Jon in American Fork


            • #7
              Wow JonH59 - that's an impressive Sim build, and even more impressive write up! Thank you so much for doing that... You will help many with your write up, as they will not have to ask all the questions that you answered. I think that's often the hardest part of the build - the little things that don't go as expected, and can often cost hundreds of dollars and eat away at your budget.

              I do have one question, and I'm not sure if you can answer it... I'm also at a point where I am considering a basement dig, after looking at about every other option (shed, addition, garage), I've come back around to basement dig, mostly because I want the Sim to be in the home and have the benefits of extra space, and able to use my current HVAC rather than trying to heat/cool my shed year round.

              So, that being the case, I have to ask, when they did that dig down (2') in your basement, when they were doing construction. Did they have to do anything special around the edges of the 'dug out' area? I'm asking because in my past research, talking to concrete/foundation guys, and with others (up here on forum) that had this done, they always seem to run into this point where the outer edges (on the outside of your house, or near an area where there are footings, or post/beams) - have to be propped up in some way, either with an 8" edge, and 1' depth added below where you currently need the floor... This often involves rebar, and drilling, and back-filling the area. Did they have to do that with your new construction?

              Thanks again Jon, hope to see you in the online tournaments soon - when my build is also completed (which can happen easier/faster now with your excellent write-up)!


              • Brettster
                Brettster commented
                Editing a comment
                SkeetShooter - thank you for that! Yes the ledge, or shelf often has to do with not underpinning, from what I’ve read about the process. That’s good to know that they have codes for that in every area of the country, as I’ll soon be having someone out to do an estimate and since they are a concrete guy they should know.

                I’ve heard from others that it’s typically 6”-8” out from the current outer wall, and I believe the ledge only has to be there on the outer walls (that are load bearing weight from your house). I can live with that in my area, so that should save me some money doing it that way, instead of not having the ledge (which is a monster of a job: called underpinning as it requires them to jam rebar into the old concrete walls as they are extended down, and to work in alternating 4’ sections).

                Regarding the water table good to know also, as I see mine is over 200’ here, and that I am a good 20’-30’ from any septic drainage, I really doubt we’ll hit water, even with a 3’ dig, as the house seems to have been built in an elevated area anyway, and a hill that slopes where the house is.

                So, with all that being said, it looks like it will be the labor for jackhammer, and removing dirt through a conveyor belt out the window, and then several concrete pours, probably on the lower end of $4k-$6k?

              • Brettster
                Brettster commented
                Editing a comment
                sulli182 - thanks for that info, so when they did the dig an extra 2 feet, were the footings lowered too, or had they not poured any footings yet, and just dig the extra distance and put footings at that new lower level, and the 12” walls? I wonder if that is what the ledge is for that I keep hearing about, as that would then basically give you a much thicker wall coming into the interior from where they start the dig and going down?

                I will not be over 10’ deep total because I have about 2.0’ now at my ceiling area (and with 7’ ceilings, puts me at 5’ deep currently), so digging out another 3’ of depth should put me at around 8’ deep (underground)... I’ll have to see what the concrete guys say, or consider finding a general contractor that can estimate it for me, I tried calling a structural company and they wouldn’t touch it!

              • sulli182
                sulli182 commented
                Editing a comment
                Yes Brettster, mine was a new build so everything was poured at the same time

            • #8
              I read the journal, great info!

              I will be building my next home with an extremely similar plan for the basement. How much did the builder charge for the 20x20 area at 2’ extra depth?

              Also, why did you decide to not put any moisture barrier under the subfloor?


              • #9
                Hi Brett,

                Thanks for the kind words. I do hope that others can use my write-up for help with their sims. And I cannot take all the credit for the write up as my daughter is a manager for Adobe and she knows all that web site stuff like it's second nature. She showed me how to do things and turned me loose.

                For the extra digging, I don't think that the builders did anything different, other than just extending the walls, so to speak. That is, where the foundation was taller by the extra two feet, there was only extra forms and rebar for the extra tall walls in that area. And, where the pit 'drop off' was located, they just had to plan for that extra little two foot wall with extra forms and rebar. Because this was a completely new home build, there was no drilling for installing rebar. Then the pour for the slab was normal, except that some of my slab was just two feet lower than the rest.

                Did I answer your question right? Or did I totally misunderstand?

                Hey Stetson,

                The builders nicked us for an additional $6000.00 for the extra dig. A little pricey but luckily it was absorbed into the budget for the house, not my sim.

                A moisture barrier? Hmmm. I don't think that ever entered either of our minds! BUT, we did use pressure treated 2x4s.

                Hope that helps,
                Jon in American Fork


                • #10
                  Originally posted by Brettster View Post
                  Wow JonH59

                  So, that being the case, I have to ask, when they did that dig down (2') in your basement, when they were doing construction. Did they have to do anything special around the edges of the 'dug out' area? I'm asking because in my past research, talking to concrete/foundation guys, and with others (up here on forum) that had this done, they always seem to run into this point where the outer edges (on the outside of your house, or near an area where there are footings, or post/beams) - have to be propped up in some way, either with an 8" edge, and 1' depth added below where you currently need the floor... This often involves rebar, and drilling, and back-filling the area. Did they have to do that with your new construction?
                  Hi Brett,

                  I believe Jon is right that different areas have different building codes. What I can tell you, is that there is an excavator at my property right now digging up my new build. I am doing 10' ceilings throughout so I will have 9'6" flat ceilings with no duct bulkheads. I'm going an extra 18" inches in my theater room and an extra 8" where my simulator will be. In Canada, there is no need for curbs or bench footings. You need bench footings when you are digging an existing basement deeper and that's to support your foundation walls. You don't need that with new construction.


                  Excellent build!! Great writeup. Really helpful for many people. .

                  Couple questions...

                  1) How far is your hitting surface from the screen?
                  2) How far from the wall is your screen? It looks to be 1-2" with the angle iron
                  3) Your floor levelling worked but did you consider, self levelling concrete for that small area? Would have taken up the same or less space and would have been much easier.

                  Awesome build and congrats on the retirement!!


                  • Brettster
                    Brettster commented
                    Editing a comment
                    Thanks Pickled - good info on the footings... appreciate it. It's hard to find accurate information on footings, apparently there are all kinds of them that can be built: a.) standard footings, b.) bench footings, c.) monolithic footings, even under my 12x15 shed, the concrete guy was talking to me about footings that have to be matched with what is under there now.

                    I had no idea that even sheds beyond 10'x10' often require footings and not just a poured cement pad to build on.

                • #11
                  JonH59 Wow, great build! You noted the image quality isn't what you had hoped you have reshade installed? if not, I would highly recommend.


                  • #12
                    Awesome write up! One thing I did not see in the links or build progress is, which putting green turf did you go with?


                    • #13
                      curious about the turf too. And also curious as to why you didn't build the fiberbuilt into the subfloor? Im debating on a fiberbuilt station but It looks like I will have to buy 2 large mats since I cant build mine into the floor (concrete). This way the put will roll and not just drop off the mat right away.


                      • #14
                        Hi Pickeled,

                        Thanks for the nice comments. And retirement is GREAT! I went directly form high school to tech school to working with no periods of time off or goofing off. So after 42 years, it's AWESOME.

                        I tee the ball up at 10 feet from my screen. I can move that around still as my hitting mat isn't permanently installed yet but the Hawk likes to know distances. Because of that, if I move my tee around, I'll have to move the Hawk too. (And THAT ain't happening.) And, with my tee at 10 feet, the Hawk looks at an area of about 18 inches square where the ball needs to be so that it can 'see' it.

                        My screen is 8 inches from the wall. I picked 8 because of the many forum members that had success with 8. I bet I could move it to 4 and still have no issues. With the West Coast net that's behind the screen - right up against it - there's very little deflection of the impact screen.

                        We actually were thinking of using self leveling concrete. There was a corner area that was about 2 inches low that I thought would take 4 bags alone! I think that I was the one who said 'no' to the concrete. I still wanted (a little) cushion from OSB, so I figured I'd be putting that down anyway and I also did leveling concrete before and though it worked, I didn't care for the finished product. And, the shimming job didn't take all that long, really. I bet we did the whole area in under 90 minutes. Was my way cheaper? Maybe. If I remember right, my BIL did some math and we would have had to get a bunch of bags of the maybe $300 worth?

                        Hi Mikeingp,

                        Thanks for the nice comments.

                        Yes, I'm disappointed with the image. And, yes, I've read a little about Reshade and I think that'll be my next adventure. The folks down in the Foresight forum are starting a rumor that the next version of FSX will address the less than stellar graphics. Quite a few guys from down there use FSX only for practice and another software for play and describe the FSX graphics as being from an 8 year old Playstation. (HAH!!) I can only use FSX for the Hawk....wait, that's not true now. E6 Connect now works with Foresight stuff. Hmmmm. Christmas is coming.

                        Hello RJBoogie,

                        Thanks for the nice comments.

                        Yeah, I totally dropped the ball on the type of putting surface. I was looking at the typical surfaces that many forum members have been installing but the cost of some of them were crazy! Almost on a whim, I asked the carpet guy about a putting green surface. He didn't even blink and told me of a few houses in our area that he installed putting greens for. REALLY? He then set me up with a large piece to test out. I said yes and it magically appeared. Unfortunately, I have no clue what he installed and at the time I wasn't even thinking about doing the write-up so I didn't ask. If you really want to know, I can contact them and ask.

                        Hi docsmilez,

                        I actually am planning on cutting into the floor and making the Fiberbuilt mat flush. I have at least 2-1/4 inches worth of floor thickness and my mat is 1-1/2 inches thick so I'll only have to make up a filler piece of about 3/4 inches. If I recall right, the area where the mat is was not the high point so it'll be a little more than 3/4 inches that I'll have to fill in. But that's no big deal. I have a table saw and wood glue!

                        If you're thinking about two large mats over concrete, does that mean that you will finish with an elevated hitting/putting area? And, if you go with the large Fiberbuilt mats, keep in mind that they come with these very thick and very heavy rubber bases that have edges that project out a short distance. I'll guess these rubber pieces are to help hold the mat in place? I tossed mine in a second. The good news is I now have a nice rectangular piece to fit down into my floor in the future. The bad news is that the corners of the mat curve up just a teeny bit. If you were to put two of these mats next to each other, you might have to consider some kind of fasteners to hold down the mats and make them perfectly flat.


                        And, if you also want to know what I have for a putting green, I'll contact the people today and try to find out.

                        Thanks again for all the nice comments. I hope I answered all the questions. If not, I'll try to do better next time.

                        Jon in American Fork


                        • #15
                          Awesome build out and thank you for the great write up!!! Enjoy retirement as it is the greatest thing ever!!