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Discussion Starter #1
There have been some threads here on sound proofing, but they have been somewhat general so I thought I would post what I did that greatly reduced the noise level in the PM.

First-proper sound proofing isn't cheap, you can go to home depot and purchase roofing material, however this really isn't the same as purchasing a high quality dampener specifically made for automotive use like "Dynamat". I know this because I have done the whole gambit from Dynamat Extreme to Home Depot special roofing material. Going cheap helps, but it's still not nearly as good as buying the right stuff, and for the most part you only save 25% and you get 50% less effectiveness.

To truly sound proof your car you are going to need to decide how far and to what level you are tying to achieve. The PM is horrible in regards to noise, it's a big tin can, what you can you say? So the plan was to reduce it as much as possible and at the same time to be practical about it. I am doing a van conversion to a camper van, so unlike a business use, having the inside quiet is important for the long drives ahead.

Good sound proofing is basically a three step process:
1. Reduce vibration - using a asphalt or butyl (butyl superior)
2. Use an sound adsorbing foam (closed cell)
3. Use a barrier to trap sound (MLV-mass loaded vinyl)

So I began with the floor, since I was going to use a super thick rubber based floor over plywood to level it off for sprinter seat mounts I used a closed cell foam base and put 3/4 inch of material on top of the floor. This was more than enough to make a huge dent in the noise level. I could have taking a step further using MLV as a base, but that stuff isn't cheap and decided to skip it and just use foam layer, plywood, and the composite floor.

Floor
Legend Composite Floor $700
Plywood $60 (3 sheets0
Wood Floor Barrier $70
Trim Loc $100 (25 foot roll)
Msl stuff $50

Walls:
$350-400
38 square feet of Sound Dampener (RAAM Mat)
40 square feet of closed cell foam (Ensolite)
30 square feet of MLV with closed cell foam (1/8 MLV w/ 1/4 inch foam)

Plywood Base


Finished Legend Composite Floor with Trim Loc covering edge


Next step was to use a good quality sound dampener. Remember this reduced vibration, but really isn't a "sound barrier" per se. You have to though start with this as a foundation. I used 38 square feet of RAAM Mat and 3 yards of Ensolite (closed cell foam). This was enough to cover everything under the windows in my van and the doors.

You only need to cover 25-50% of the area to be effective, you can do more but you don't really need to.

Roof with RAAM Mat (this later is going to get covered so I did not get to crazy here)


This is the Ensolite foam (closed cell foam) This is to absorb the sound after you controlled vibration. I was happy with this but decided I even wanted to go further to really make the van quiet.


So I decided to do some MLV with closed cell foam. I had not used this before but knew from other forums this really is the only way to stop sound really well. I put it over the wheel wells, walls, and eventually did the doors. It's heavy, stiff, and expensive, but it really stops sound. You could skip the Ensolite step and just to a vibration dampener and do this and you will have a high end car like feel.


You must use a high quality automotive adhesive to clue down the MLV. Remember foam side to the walls glued to the Dampener you choose.


This picture is the wheel well through the process. This shows MLV on the wheel well and Ensolite and a layer of RAAM underneath both the Ensolite and MLV.



I taped the seams here with duct tape. Its totally glued down and these are all going to be covered anyways, but I wanted to do it best way possible. I had to do this in pieces due to the curve of the wheel well.


I eventually even did the doors. You could go crazy with this stuff. Did I get every little space? NO, but it's more than enough in my opinion. I am not making a competition SPL car. The MLV is now on the wall also. This stuff is HEAVY 1 lb a square foot!


End Result which all the panels looked like


So was it worth it? Well I spent about $350-400 in materials to do the bottom half of my interior. I can tell you it's super quiet! So much so that now the wind off the windows I can clearly hear and it would be useless to do more as the wind noise now exceeds any other noises I heard before. I am happy I did this. I would say it's similar to what my wifes Toyota Sienna sounds like inside now. I think thats a big deal, the PM van is a big brick and sound quality was not in it's design. For sure step 1 and step 3 are absolutely needed if you really want to make a difference. An added benefit is I have much better insulation now. I am still adding walls, a camper roof, and headliner so it's going to be even much quieter when that's done.

I still did not even do the front doors or rip out the front rubber flooring...this would make the PM super quite, but the noise in front wasn't bad, it was all teh stuff from the rear. I may eventually do the front, but did not want to take that all apart at this time.

Hope this helps has you figure out how to do your interior.
 

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Great job! Gym rubber is good for sound mitigation and insulation, I'm using it as part of my floor insulation. I also ordered 1 1/2" thick for the front floor to make up for the 1 5/8" rise of the seat swivels I installed.
 

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Really nice job Slammit! My homemade partition wall got closed cell foam, mlv, and thinsulate today. I can barely hear the water coming up off the tires. Tomorrow I will mlv the fenderwells over the dynamat! Keep the pics coming, great build!
 

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Very nice work, lots of money in sound dampening. I did mine the inexpensive way. But it is still quieter than my audi, and now I'm bothered with the wind noise around the front window and mirrors. But it does make the van a much nicer place to be on long trips.
 

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I'll be looking at covering the wheelwells with something, but the walls and ceiling of my van will be insulated with Thinsulate, which is also designed for acoustic damping. And much lighter. Expecting it to do quite well after reading the reports of others using it. With Thinsulate, not sure adding MLV and other stuff behind it would make a difference.
 

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I hope you are right, but I'm thinking floor and wheel wells are more important for sound. I have put Thinsulate on ceiling, upper walls (above window area) and lower side panels. So far no difference in noise that I can discern. I do see a definite difference in heating.
 

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I hope you are right, but I'm thinking floor and wheel wells are more important for sound. I have put Thinsulate on ceiling, upper walls (above window area) and lower side panels. So far no difference in noise that I can discern. I do see a definite difference in heating.
Yes, floor too, but not with Thinsulate.


My floor will be a layered setup of minicell closed cell foam, plywood, rigid Styrofoam, underlayment, and floor tiles. About 2" thick when done, that should do quite well for noise abatement.


I'm also planning on doing some Thinsulate in the cab; headliner and doors. Will take a look at the firewall and floor, might be doing something extra there as well, and that would be with some kind of heavy foam or vinyl.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Example of what MLV type material can do when properly installed with an air gap. In our case that gap would be the dampener/foam/MLV barrier.

Not exactly what I did, but the concept is the same and materials similar just using less of it. This is why MLV is such a must for true sound blocking when used properly with air gap.

http://youtu.be/W8_eGubA_80
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Yes, but it shows the effectiveness of a proper sound barrier. Foam alone can't do this, you have to trap the sound between two barriers to be totally effective. This helped however in my decision to use a MLV - Dynomat or foam really stops no sound, only absorbs vibration or sound but something needs to trap it. I used dampener in a lot of cars (5-8 cars/vans/trucks+ at least) and with foam in some, but until I used the MLV in combination with this did not realize how much more effective it all was till it was used together. Gets you that extra little more you are looking for when trying to get things as quiet as possible.

I am a fan of MLV now to use in some areas when applicable.
 

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Slamit06 you've done an outstanding job! photos are great too. I've done a 25 percent sound deadening with Damplifier, have noticed a huge improvement, expect another huge improvement when I put a 3/4" rubber floor mat on the floor. My question to you and others, what is this little box near the rear wheel wells?? and what is the smaller black box below it?
 

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Then it probably shouldn't be covered with a wall, correct? and the little black thing below? what's that?
A cover. Closes up a channel that runs along side of van towards the front. More covers forward, the more five (?) sided ones.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Its a vent to relieve pressure closing the big sliding door. They cover them in the motor home conversions, but it would make closing the sliding door a little more difficult. Basic physics. When I had a pop top in my last van it could be difficult to lower due to the air displacement lowering it...same thing with the large sliding door, covering this might make it a little more difficult. Not sure if I will cover it or not when the walls are done. A lot of noise comes through this however and I am sure the door would still close, just be a little more difficult or when I cover the walls leave some ventilation for air pressure relief.
 

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This is certainly an impressive and extensive noise mitigation install.

A single layer of 3M Thinsulate SM600L will provide 80% or better noise abatement. Advantages are less weight, less work, less cost, more R-value with no off-gassing, no loose fibers, no moisture absorption and ultimately, a great selling feature for your van.

PM me for sample.
 

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I bought several rolls off carinsulation.com for our company vans, I could not find a product out there that could even come close to competing with it and I've tried numerous. It's a closed cell foam, it is so light weight and very effective against heat & sound. I used 3M's super 77 spray adhesive and I had no issue getting it to stick, it really forms to any shape easy. We haul cold food and before I could not get the whole interior cool with the AC and had it running on high constantly but now I crank it on high and then turn it down to medium and it feels like I'm inside a fridge lol. I'm a penny pincher so I try to conserve fuel, alot of guys add 60-150+lbs in material doing layers of all kinds of stuff and now you are driving around with that extra weight forever. I added about 6lbs for the entire install lol that's nothing! >:D It is a two sided foil product so that is another advantage it has as well I think and it's not that crappy bubble wrap I've seen with foil on it haha. They sell 35' x 4' rolls on their website but if you contact them they can accommodate longer rolls. ;)
 
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