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Candidates for New DIY Build - Floorstanding for Music & HT

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  • #16
    I am in a bit of the same boat as you JazzyG (I think). Right now I am leaning towards building the Helios and if I ever move to a larger space and decide the speaker needs to be taken up a notch I would add one or two 10" woofers or dual servo controlled 12" drivers from GR Research.

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    • #17
      Originally posted by tf1216 View Post
      I am in a bit of the same boat as you JazzyG (I think). Right now I am leaning towards building the Helios and if I ever move to a larger space and decide the speaker needs to be taken up a notch I would add one or two 10" woofers or dual servo controlled 12" drivers from GR Research.
      Sounds like a fun project, I just looked that Helios design up, Jeff Bagby designed it so probably pretty well done! That is a good idea on being able to expand on it down the road, would you make the additional woofer(s) in a separate box with a plate amp or build them into the same box and crossover? That said, they look pretty capable in the bass department, probably need a fairly big room to outgrow those. If you are like me, you ruminate about these type decisions almost as much time as it takes to actually build the project! My posts here were just my last effort to get some input to help me decide, I have been kicking this idea around for months. For some reason, just typing it out in a forum, formulating my thoughts, helps me decide. Seeing how others reply is also very helpful--even though nobody can make the decision for you.

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      • #18
        I would intend on building a second cabinet to handle the bottom 3 or 4 octaves with a plate amplifier.
        If I get the time to fiddle with passive crossovers then I would consider creating a passive 3-way system or make the Helios baffle removable to experiment with other tweeters in a waveguide.

        I am like you : )
        I have been planning another DIY build for a long time. I have made countless trips to Rick's website looking at all of his work. The Estremo looks awesome! Do you know how you are going to finish the cabinet yet?

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        • #19
          Originally posted by tf1216 View Post
          I would intend on building a second cabinet to handle the bottom 3 or 4 octaves with a plate amplifier.
          If I get the time to fiddle with passive crossovers then I would consider creating a passive 3-way system or make the Helios baffle removable to experiment with other tweeters in a waveguide.

          I am like you : )
          I have been planning another DIY build for a long time. I have made countless trips to Rick's website looking at all of his work. The Estremo looks awesome! Do you know how you are going to finish the cabinet yet?
          Good question on the finish, still undecided. I generally prefer speakers with a natural wood finish vs. paint or vinyl. Has anyone out there considered doing say 3/4" MDF with a 1/4" solid hardwood piece glued to it for a total 1" thick baffle. Then using 3M peel and stick veneer on the sides out of the same type of wood and staining to match. It is a bigger speaker, so not sure about putting veneer on the back, seems like a waste, maybe use black speaker paint like this Exohyde stuff. The other idea is black front and back, maybe even put a magnetic grill on the front, with some sort of more exotic wood on the sides and top where it is most visible?

          I found these Soundocity plinth/bases last night, they look super nice, so I sent them an email to inquire.

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          • djg
            djg commented
            Editing a comment
            Big fan of the PSA veneer. Quick work, quite durable IME. My Continuums are a mix of PSA cherry veneer over MDF and soild cherry.

            My little coaxials are PSA mahogany veneer with a painted baffle. My Zinger derivatives are PSA mahogany veneer, solid mahogany front frame and painted baffle. I generally do the backs.

        • #20
          I do like the 3M PSA veneer, did that on my Classix II build and it is pretty easy to work with. That stuff sticks really well too! Here is what I am thinking of doing right now.
          • Using this Pine beetle kill veneer from Oakwood Veneer Company. The color will pop more after it has a finish put on it.
          • Using this gray grill cloth from PE.
          • Thinking of painting the baffle black, maybe just using the ExoHyde from PE.
          • Undecided on the back, could go either way black or veneer.



          It would be kind of unique, but not too far off the rails as far as being a good fit in a lot of different type rooms and decors.

          What do you guys think?!?!

          EDIT: I ordered this ebony veneer instead. I like the idea above a lot, but I think I would rather try it on something a bit less expensive and most everything in the den is black/red/brown tones. Ebony is very expensive, and endangered, but this is an engineered wood product, made up of reconstituted wood material. I watched a video about how they make it, very cool and guilt free, not to mention MUCH less expensive than real ebony. However, it is not vinyl, it will take a finish like real wood.

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          JazzyG
          Last edited by JazzyG; 11-05-2020, 01:29 AM.

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          • #21
            Where you from JazzyG? I hope you get the chance to document your build. From this thread it looks it is going to be exciting!!

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            • #22
              I purchased a sheet of 1" MDF for the baffles and 3/4" MEDEX for the rest of the build. I got the wood from a local, family-owned, woodworking shop--not a big-box lumberyard. They have high quality Roseburg products, which are made in the USA! Yes, the quality of the wood does make a difference. The wood is now staged to the left, awaiting processing by my faithful Shopsmith. The large sheets of thick MDF are very difficult to work with, so I had the lumberyard cut them in half, it also allowed them to fit in the bed of my Ford Ranger.
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              The next step was to start cutting the 48" x 48" pieces to the correct dimension on one side. The larger pieces required assistance from my wife, they are very heavy and it is easy to make a mistake. I had some problems with the blade stalling, at first I thought my blade was dull, swapped it for a fresh Freud D1050X but the problem persisted. Turns out, the power outlet in my foot switch was failing and the power connector was only making intermittent connection. I had some square push in 120V/15A outlets on hand, so I soldered in a new one and everything is working good again! The foot pedal is really nice as a convenience and safety device, I sometime plug both the Shopsmith and the ShopVac into it at the same time, so it turns power on for both. Hmm, maybe that is too much power for the receptacle?
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              Last edited by JazzyG; 11-11-2020, 12:13 AM.

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              • #23
                After a lot of cutting, I got to a convenient stopping point, having everything cut to width, but still needing to be cut down to the proper length. Many of these panels would be the same length, so that always helps make it easier as you only have to set the fence once on the Shopsmith!

                You can see the Classix II's overlooking the action in the pictures, don't worry guys...these are for a different room!

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                • #24
                  Good start! Going to be a fun project.
                  Andy

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                  • #25
                    I got my tops/bottoms/braces boards cut down to the proper length and started work on the internal braces today. I only completed one brace, but it looks pretty good. Not sure if there is an easier way to do these, but this is how I am doing them. I think the pictures show my technique pretty well, if you know of a better way...let me know! I still have 5 more braces to go.

                    My Rockler Bench Cookies are very useful for this job, I have them attached to my router table T-Track using the optional T-Track risers. Note the LED Milwaukee light that is mounted on a T-Track 'microphone stand' style adjustable post, this really helped illuminate the area where I was cutting with the Skil saw.

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                    • #26
                      I got the last of the six internal brace cut-outs done today! These ended up being very time consuming. This is a pretty manual process and I am very happy with how they turned out, considering they were done free hand using a Skil saw and cleaning up with a file and sanding block.

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                      I also have been spending some time researching a better way to do square/rectangular holes like these, as I will need to be able to make very precise ones for the RAAL tweeters. There is also a square cut-out on the rear panel, for the binding post plate. So, my research has brought me to this how to video on the 'Tube. I have some materials like T-Track, double-sided tape, and some hardware on order. I will keep you guys posted on how that process goes with building and using this DIY square router jig. For the round driver holes, on the baffle, I am going to use the Jasper Jig.

                      Hmm, two big boxes arrived this week from Rick Craig...what could they be!?!?

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                      Cheers,

                      JazzyG

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                      • #27
                        I built my windowpane braces for my "Zinger" derivatives out of sticks. So much easier and much less material use.

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                        • #28
                          Originally posted by JazzyG View Post
                          I got the last of the six internal brace cut-outs done today! These ended up being very time consuming. This is a pretty manual process and I am very happy with how they turned out, considering they were done free hand using a Skil saw and cleaning up with a file and sanding block.

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                          I also have been spending some time researching a better way to do square/rectangular holes like these, as I will need to be able to make very precise ones for the RAAL tweeters. There is also a square cut-out on the rear panel, for the binding post plate. So, my research has brought me to this how to video on the 'Tube. I have some materials like T-Track, double-sided tape, and some hardware on order. I will keep you guys posted on how that process goes with building and using this DIY square router jig. For the round driver holes, on the baffle, I am going to use the Jasper Jig.
                          For the square holes take strips of 1/4" mdf and attached them to the baffle/brace where you need the square opening. Rough cut the hole with a jig saw and finish with a flush trim bit in your router table. If you really want to make a mess instead of rough cutting the opening just drill a starter hole and use a flush trim spiral bit.

                          If you need 90 degree corners that will have to be finished by hand because you are limited to the radius of the flush trim bit.

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                          • #29
                            I made some more progress on the project this week, the holes are now cut for the ports!

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                            • #30
                              I completed the cut outs for the Scan Speak woofers today! A very productive day and the work turned out very precise and clean. Now that I have some experience with using the Jasper Jig, the cuts are going a lot faster.

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