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Living Room Build Out

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  • Living Room Build Out

    I haven’t posted in a while as I have had other projects going; push carts for toddlers – they make great birthday gifts, a mantle shelf for a friend of mine’s foyer and a MK12 build. In between that time, I have been also working on built-ins in our living room. This has proved to be my most daunting project ever – and I thought the Swopes were complicated.

    Ever since we moved into our home 4 years ago, our living room has some open spaces that are just screaming to be built out. First I rebuilt the entire fireplace mantel and tile surround. Next, what better way to justify building more speakers than to incorporate them into the cabinets and built-ins. This project officially started over a year ago with a vision. We lacked storage in our living room and the TV was very hard to hear as it is pushed back into a 24” cavity. So after a few months of nailing down a design in SketchUp, I came up with design below.









    First, the idea was to build a storage/entertainment area to house speakers, a new home theater receiver, blu-ray and cable box. The entertainment/storage area will have custom cabinet doors to match the rest of the house as well as one will be disguised as a speaker grill. Second, frames and face frames for the mid and upper storage areas with the same custom cabinet doors will be constructed to close off open areas and turn them into to true storage areas.






























    After 10 years, I finally figured out how to spray oil base. That was critical to making the project happen.



    The speakers are next and I will try to post some more pics and details in the next few days. To answer the question before is it asked, I used Oss for the left and right and the OS center for the center channel. More to come.
    Last edited by Gordy; 07-03-2015, 08:38 PM.
    "A dirty shop is an unsafe shop, if you injure yourself in a clean shop you are just stupid" - Coach Kupchinsky

    The Madeleine
    The Roxster
    Swopes 5.0
    Acoustic Panels
    Living Room Make Over

  • #2
    Re: Living Room Build Out

    You're so dang talented. I need to redo my living room, but I'm going to end up hiring someone to build an audio rack. Nice work!
    Some people are addicted to Vicodin. I'm addicted to speaker building.

    The Chorales - Usher 8945A/Vifa XT25TG Build
    ESP Project 101 Lateral MOSFET Amplifier
    LM4780 Parallel Chipamp
    Sonata Soundbar Project
    The Renditions - Active/Passive Towers

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    • #3
      Re: Living Room Build Out

      Wow! Very nice. This reminds me that I need to get to building the TV/entertainment stand I was planning. Your project is inspiring me to get it done

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      • #4
        Re: Living Room Build Out

        Nice job! While your at it you might think on incorporating A way to organize the wires on the back. I built a little slide out tray between the wheels underneath the last one I built and it worked great.
        ‘There are none so blind as those who will not see.’

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        • #5
          Re: Living Room Build Out

          I am aware the speaker config may not be ideal – too close together, left and right horizontal not vertical. In order to keep the budget down and maximize the space that I have, I decided to go with an OS config. I used the HiVi tweet for these, as that is what the center channel called for. I also had to massage the box dimensions in order to get the center to fit as well as maintain the same height as the left and right speakers. The left and right speakers are per Paul’s original plans. I used the left over Baltic birch from the entertainment/storage rack and just gave them a few coats of lacquer for grins. They will be behind a grill anyway but they can at least look descent.

          The crossovers were too large to get through the speaker holes so they were mounted inside and the baffle was glued up. In order to get them out the enclosure has to be cut apart.












          The speakers were straight forward. I used white PVC for the ports and urethane glue to hold them in place. I found if I rolled the pipe on my sled on the table saw and I cut a small groove in the pipe so the glue has something to expand into. Then end result is they are rock solid.



















          "A dirty shop is an unsafe shop, if you injure yourself in a clean shop you are just stupid" - Coach Kupchinsky

          The Madeleine
          The Roxster
          Swopes 5.0
          Acoustic Panels
          Living Room Make Over

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          • #6
            Re: Living Room Build Out

            Originally posted by bret191 View Post
            Nice job! While your at it you might think on incorporating A way to organize the wires on the back. I built a little slide out tray between the wheels underneath the last one I built and it worked great.

            The wires in the back are not really an issue as they just hang down. The back is accessible but tying up and organizing wires would be difficult. I can fit enough of my body thought the side storage area to get to what I need to. I had to be able to plug in the power-strip in and get to the coax and Cat6 plug.

            "A dirty shop is an unsafe shop, if you injure yourself in a clean shop you are just stupid" - Coach Kupchinsky

            The Madeleine
            The Roxster
            Swopes 5.0
            Acoustic Panels
            Living Room Make Over

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            • #7
              Re: Living Room Build Out

              Wow - very nicely done. I will be following this for sure!
              Sausage With Meat Sause, Please

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              • #8
                Re: Living Room Build Out

                The install happened last weekend. I had not test fit the rack until I got it into the house. But I measured like 20 times so I was confident it would go in but be tight…and it was. After getting it all level and snugged up I went and picked up a low end Yamaha receiver. The speakers don’t need much power and I did not need to break the bank. Everything runs HDMI and I have one HDMI port left for the Fire TV that I will order in a month or two.





















                "A dirty shop is an unsafe shop, if you injure yourself in a clean shop you are just stupid" - Coach Kupchinsky

                The Madeleine
                The Roxster
                Swopes 5.0
                Acoustic Panels
                Living Room Make Over

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                • #9
                  Re: Living Room Build Out

                  Nice work. It really comes together with a great look. You knocked those crossovers out of the park though, shame you hid them in the cabinets!
                  Audio: Media PC -> Sabre ESS 9023 DAC -> Behringer EP2500 -> (insert speakers of the moment)
                  Sites: Jupiter Audioworks - Flicker Stream - FRD Consortium Archive - Proud Member of Midwest Audio Club

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                  • #10
                    Re: Living Room Build Out

                    what biscuit jointer do you have? My neighbor has a porter cable handheld one we used a few times it did help line things up a lot easier. Especially for doing solo glue-ups. We mainly use it for table tops though.
                    My Build Thread's
                    Carrera's / Finalist TL's / Speedster TMM's / Speedster MTM Center / Overnight Sensation Surrounds

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                    • #11
                      Re: Living Room Build Out

                      I may be off base here, but wouldn't there be issues with having a rear facing port and having them mounted as you have? Is there enough room around the speakers and shelfs for the rear waves to propagate out?

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                      • #12
                        Re: Living Room Build Out

                        Originally posted by JasonP View Post
                        Nice work. It really comes together with a great look. You knocked those crossovers out of the park though, shame you hid them in the cabinets!
                        Thanks! I built the crossovers for my Swopes in the same way. I lay out the template in Visio and make all the parts scale to size, then print and attach to the material being used. All the holes are drilled on my drill press. They go together very well and look nice to. At least in the Swopes, they are removable and serviceable.

                        Originally posted by Mike220 View Post
                        what biscuit jointer do you have? My neighbor has a porter cable handheld one we used a few times it did help line things up a lot easier. Especially for doing solo glue-ups. We mainly use it for table tops though.
                        Porter Cable 557, with my overhead vac hose connected I have zero dust escape. There are arguments back and forth over strength but I really just use it to line up and mock up. It just works too well. I did use it for some small table top glue ups for the walnut end tables I made for our media room. It is one of those tools I should have purchased a long time ago. I purchased the face frame blade and used it to assemble the face frame for the cabinet.

                        Originally posted by ksneote View Post
                        I may be off base here, but wouldn't there be issues with having a rear facing port and having them mounted as you have? Is there enough room around the speakers and shelfs for the rear waves to propagate out?
                        No, not off base at all. I thought about that right as I put the last nail in the back panel. It kind of gives it a little more low end but is not echoy. The cabinet is 16” deep and the air has an inch all the way around to escape. Hindsight, I would have put the port on the baffle.
                        "A dirty shop is an unsafe shop, if you injure yourself in a clean shop you are just stupid" - Coach Kupchinsky

                        The Madeleine
                        The Roxster
                        Swopes 5.0
                        Acoustic Panels
                        Living Room Make Over

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Living Room Build Out

                          Excellent project. I looooooooove built ins. Seriously, ask my wife. I won't shut up about them.
                          Isn't it about time we started answering rhetorical questions?

                          Paul Carmody's DIY Audio Projects
                          Twitter: @undefinition1

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                          • #14
                            Re: Living Room Build Out

                            Originally posted by Paul Carmody View Post
                            Excellent project. I looooooooove built ins. Seriously, ask my wife. I won't shut up about them.
                            I have always really liked them but the one thing that has stopped me over the years is the finish. Most of the homes in our area, if they do have built-ins, are painted the trim color; usually a slight off-white. But the paint is also oil base. When I rebuilt the fireplace/mantel and surround I tried my hand once again at spraying oil base. The end result was not so hot.

                            I recently was commissioned to make a simple mantle shelf for a friend of mine for his foyer. I thought it would be a good opportunity to try the spraying of oil base again. I researched heavily and all I found was "just thin the oil base with paint thinner and shoot it out of the $20 purple Harbor Freight HVLP" Since I wanted to specifically shoot with an HVLP I thought, how could I go wrong?

                            So I picked up a purple Harbor Freight HVLP sprayer, a good regulator (I converted one of my wall outlets to a regulated outlet and had it in a box brand new for years), $20 light weight poly hose and I was spraying like nobodies business. At an 80 degree temp, I ran it with 2:11 thinner to paint and 50lbs to the gun. I have since used this combo several times all with good results and have a lot more to spray. The unit being built and the open spaces above it will get face frames and cabinet doors.

                            The downer, I can get the oil base to lay mirror smooth If my prep work is not good enough you can see the imperfections. Not like putting it on with a brush. I will be ordering cabinet doors in the next few weeks. the paint process is lengthy. You spray, let it sit untouched for 24 hours...let dry an additional 5-6. After this the parts can be worked with without printing.
                            "A dirty shop is an unsafe shop, if you injure yourself in a clean shop you are just stupid" - Coach Kupchinsky

                            The Madeleine
                            The Roxster
                            Swopes 5.0
                            Acoustic Panels
                            Living Room Make Over

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                            • #15
                              Re: Living Room Build Out

                              Thanks for posting the details. I'm always curious how others approach built ins. Can you elaborate a little more on your paint process? i.e., did you spray the carcass and face separately and then attach? Looks like minimally a first coat was applied to the carcass without the face.

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