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  • Material suggestions

    I am finishing up my speaker project. I intend to build a grill from a frame covered in black acoustically transparent cloth. I have imbedded rare earth magnets in the four corners of the cabinet which will line up with washers mounted in the back face of the grill frame.
    I need a material that is stable, straight, and light weight. Using clear spruce from a dry 2x4 would be light enough but I am wary of warping.
    dimensions are approx 18 tall by 8 wide. The cross section is 1/2” thick by 3/4” wide.
    Any suggestions??
    Cheers
    Randy
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  • #2

    Re: Material suggestions

    I would use some Birch or Poplar as long as it is dry. It won't warp if the magnets are holding it in the speaker. You can do lap corners and it should be very strong.
    Brian @ Muir likes this.

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    • #3

      Re: Material suggestions

      Hadn’t thought of poplar. I’ve never used it. It’s pretty light isn’t it?
      Cheers
      Randy

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      • #4

        Re: Material suggestions

        Yes, it is. I can check my rack tomorrow if you like. I might have some pieces left.

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        • #5

          Re: Material suggestions

          Poplar was the first thing that popped in my head too. Basswood might also work well - I believe its quite light. Or Balsa?

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          • #6

            Re: Material suggestions

            I would go with Quarter-Sawn in whichever material you choose for stability. Poplar, basswood or willow would certainly be light enough. Vertical Grain Sawn pine, if you can get it or make your own, is light and stable.

            Lap joints as Wally in Calgary suggested and you should be good to go!

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            • #7

              Re: Material suggestions

              Those magnets won't affect the sound will they?
              I'm sure I remember sound can be distorted, but then again, I'm less sure of things, the longer I live.
              Noel

              "Being so impressed with the beauty of nature, I never cease to be amazed at how the
              'touch of the human hand' can transform it into another kind of beauty that is so uniquely human.
              "

              John Snow, Outdoorsman and Retired Teacher

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              • #8

                Re: Material suggestions

                Originally posted by beachburl View Post
                Those magnets won't affect the sound will they?
                I'm sure I remember sound can be distorted, but then again, I'm less sure of things, the longer I live.
                In theory yes but they are small and far enough away from the speakers that their effect is negligible. The tweeter is shielded anyways. I have tested the speakers and they sound sweet. Magnetic grills are available on many high end speakers now.
                Cheers
                Randy

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                • #9

                  Re: Material suggestions

                  All this frame is going to do is hold the cloth? Why not use MDF and seal it with lacquer or poly? Nobody will see it, it doesn't warp and there is no real strength requirement. As I recall, the grille cloth supports on my mid-seventies "Goodmans" are just hardboard .... maybe 3/16" thick?
                  KenL likes this.

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                  • #10

                    Re: Material suggestions

                    Please share some pics of these speakers when you're done.

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                    • #11

                      Re: Material suggestions

                      I made mine from 1/2" mdf with the cutouts routered. I was trying to avoid resonance issues and it works fine.

                      Ken

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                      • #12

                        Re: Material suggestions

                        Originally posted by drzaius View Post
                        Please share some pics of these speakers when you're done.
                        WIP pics

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                        Cheers
                        Randy

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                        • #13

                          Re: Material suggestions

                          I stapled Velcro in each corner and mid way on the last set i made. That way no issues with the stray fields from magnets. Easy and cheap and no glue to fail and fool with. You will need a some what decent strong frame for when you pull the grill cloth tight and not have the sides bow in. Depending on how close to the outside edges your speakers are will depend on the width your frame can be of course, but go as wide as you can to stop that side bend.

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                          • #14

                            Re: Material suggestions

                            Originally posted by RV Sam View Post
                            I stapled Velcro in each corner and mid way on the last set i made. That way no issues with the stray fields from magnets. Easy and cheap and no glue to fail and fool with. You will need a some what decent strong frame for when you pull the grill cloth tight and not have the sides bow in. Depending on how close to the outside edges your speakers are will depend on the width your frame can be of course, but go as wide as you can to stop that side bend.
                            The nice thing about the magnets is they are just below the veneer, so there is no attachment hardware visible when the grills are off.
                            Cheers
                            Randy

                            Comment


                            • #15

                              Re: Material suggestions

                              Nice cabinets. So many DIY speakers are either:
                              a) super gaudy with contrasting wood species & wild grain
                              b) really rough
                              c) all of the above.
                              These are a nice, clean design & the grain selection is great. Can't wait to see the finished product.

                              What drivers & crossovers are you using & where did you get them?

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