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New cabinet for used speakers?

Discussion in 'Instrument Makers' started by thoffen, Oct 29, 2018.

  1. thoffen

    thoffen Member Full Member Thread Starter

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    Todd
    I have a niece that is into music although has no hi-fi equipment, nor am I trying to make some. But I do know I can find some mid-range speakers on the cheap, and I can build a really nice cabinet. There are kits to build your own nice speakers, but the price is to steep so I'm thinking of upgrading a used/unwanted set.

    Question is -- if I don't know what I'm doing, is this a reasonable project to take on? Easy to replicate the dimensions of an existing speaker, but this stuff is new to me so I'm not sure the impact of different wood, thickness, etc. on the acoustics. Anyone done this or think it's a project worth experimenting with?
     
  2. Blueglass

    Blueglass Member Full Member

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    There are website that have calculators for the Theile figures...

    For Hifi I'd get mdf build a box and cover that in nice wood. For Hifi the speakers should be very neutral.
     
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  3. Mr. Peet

    Mr. Peet Member Full Member

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    Another option is to just veneer the ones you have / find on the cheap.
     
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  4. Arn213

    Arn213 craM de la craM # RipJack City! Full Member

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    It is a bit involved if you are going to go outside the sonic footprint of the speaker cabinet volume, if you stay within the sonic footprint to replicate what is there, then it is a lot less involve and just a ‘cosmetic upgrade’. Otherwise, you have to do some mathematical calculations for the speaker box and the speaker volume if you go out the sonic footprint of the physical size of the original speakers was build and specified as.

    Here are some general information and this is more based on guitar amplifiers- they share similarities and applications. You have to determine whether you want it sealed or ported (vented)- the basic difference is between focus/punchy versus added bass low end. The vented version is a little more complex as you have to do some mathematical calculations. Then select what type of speakers. Then material selection- MDF at 3/4” thick is usually used as it is dense and not grain orientated and neutral. Then there is a Baltic birch plywood that is that is typically clear, free of knots. If you get into real solid wood types, that becomes a whole science by itself and typically they tell you not too because they can impart and color the sonic signature of the sound- this typically better suited application for electric guitar amplifiers (typically pine). Then proper fasteners and proper adhesives will be required- screws and strong glues. Body construction of the speaker box will need to be properly braced so to eliminate sound distortion and to keep the frame tight. Additional bracing will be required at the inside corners to help strengthen the box- these are blocking strips/cleats/batten solid wood pieces that is glued and screwed in. Then you have to have the baffle (front) in place which the speakers/drivers is mounted on. Baffles job is to block interference and regulate better sound that happens inside of the box due to the drivers.

    If you decide to do natural solid wood (plain or figured) to highlight it’s natural beauty- some do a lap joint and others will do a dovetail joint at the corners. If you decide to do an MDF or Baltic birch (you can stain it), you can cover it with veneer as what the guys suggested above OR you can cover it with Tolex, vinyl, fabric, etc.

    Lastly, you have to budget in the tools required, materials, fasteners, adhesives, speaker fabric, etc. for what you want to do and take that all in account If you are going to do multiple of them or do more down the road, it probably is worth the time and $$ invested.
     
    Last edited: Oct 30, 2018
  5. ClintW

    ClintW Member Full Member

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    Here is an interesting idea. Never seen these in action, but sounds like they could be decent except for the bass.
     
  6. Arn213

    Arn213 craM de la craM # RipJack City! Full Member

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    Clinton, that is a great post! If you actually fast forward to around 31:00, that segment is the same idea how acoustic and classical soundboards works!
     
  7. thoffen

    thoffen Member Full Member Thread Starter

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    Thanks for all the resources!

    Was thinking about using Baltic birch but making a pattern out of the laminations instead. It's a lot of gluing but I can reinforce with dowels. I could replicate the design of the original cabinet and hopefully reuse the original material. But I'd probably want to make a thicker cabinet and chamfer the edges. Will fool with the formulas later and see what that might do.
     
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