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Build Thread: HELIX full range 3D-Printed speakers with 3" Fountek FE85

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  • #16
    Test print looks really promising. Note how it's already creating a complete hoop with no internal supports. No reason why this dynamic shouldn't continue successfully all the way up.

    As for external supports: Other than a minimal amount to anchor it to the build plate -- say directly under the first 360 degrees of helix -- it shouldn't need any external supports either.

    Wobbles during printing as it gets taller might be a problem, in which case I would add some supports in strategic locations... directly under the baffle for instance.

    I forgot to take a picture before removing the supports. Whoops.

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    • #17
      Matte Silver for the win, I think..... maybe.... *the madness of aesthetic decisions*.....

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      • #18
        Originally posted by lunchmoney View Post
        As for internal absorption, I'm wondering if there's a thick liquid I could literally pour into the inside, to coat the internal walls with a thin layer, with good acoustic properties.... you can get such a thing in aerosol form, but that wouldn't help me much.... does it come in liquid form?

        What about that liquid rubber sealant always advertised on TV? Flex Seal or something like that. Don't know if it outgases, I have never used it.

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        • #19
          Originally posted by skatz View Post


          What about that liquid rubber sealant always advertised on TV? Flex Seal or something like that. Don't know if it outgases, I have never used it.
          Ooh yeah off-gassing is a great point. I'll certainly be careful with any liquids/aerosol's. Don't want a stinky port hole on these things
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          • #20
            Or dissolving your plastic enclosure or the glue on the driver!

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            • #21
              Originally posted by lunchmoney View Post
              Yes I could definitely fit a component or three in there if it would help shape the sound of the FE85.
              Any ideas? Let's do it!
              I don't have any ideas but I know there are a handful of people on the forum that could offer suggestions. (There was a recent thread where Jhollander was suggesting a filter for a Techtonics driver being run full range.) Also, the Fountek FE85 is pretty popular so there already might be a filter out there, but it may only be suitable for a certain baffle width which would definitely be different than what you have.

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              • #22
                Originally posted by lunchmoney View Post

                So in other words you're doing a solid wall, yes? The other way to do that is to simply set you infill to 100%. Achieves the same thing, although the paths it takes are different. Shouldn't make any difference structurally.
                Yeah that's it. I found with a few of my failed prints doing the 100% still tried to do the pattern, but let's be honest I've been messing with the Cura settings that much I could have modded something without knowing

                edit. I just finished two 3d printing projects one being 0.015cuft and 3mm think walls and a 2" driver and one you might want to listen to the video, a 3" peerless in about 0.045cuft with 5mm thick walls, both recently added to the speaker project section of the forum. I hated trying to finish the PLA as there was an aweful lot of sanding and bog work to make it look presentable and then I had to glue together the body mid paint job and then try paint again. I've been trying to research some PLA material that is a bit more forgiving and hides the layer lines, line a granite or metal style, but might need to update my extruder on my ender 3 first. Alternatively I've seen folks using ABS and use an acetone/fan setup to smooth it.

                edit 2. Are you wanting the port to be held in place solid with no void around it? Why not try that expanding foam builder's use if you are?

                Edit 3. Sorry just woke up....what printer you using mate?

                ​​​​​​

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                • #23
                  Originally posted by 3rutu5 View Post

                  Yeah that's it. I found with a few of my failed prints doing the 100% still tried to do the pattern, but let's be honest I've been messing with the Cura settings that much I could have modded something without knowing

                  edit. I just finished two 3d printing projects one being 0.015cuft and 3mm think walls and a 2" driver and one you might want to listen to the video, a 3" peerless in about 0.045cuft with 5mm thick walls, both recently added to the speaker project section of the forum. I hated trying to finish the PLA as there was an aweful lot of sanding and bog work to make it look presentable and then I had to glue together the body mid paint job and then try paint again. I've been trying to research some PLA material that is a bit more forgiving and hides the layer lines, line a granite or metal style, but might need to update my extruder on my ender 3 first. Alternatively I've seen folks using ABS and use an acetone/fan setup to smooth it.

                  edit 2. Are you wanting the port to be held in place solid with no void around it? Why not try that expanding foam builder's use if you are?

                  Edit 3. Sorry just woke up....what printer you using mate?

                  ​​​​​​
                  1. As for finishing the PLA, I'm going to start with a few coats of heavy build primer to fill in the grooves between the layers, and then sand smooth. Still a fair amount of work, but the heavy build primer makes it a lot less easier.

                  2. Not sure that I understand the question regarding the port.... it is already supported by a thick "T" shaped rib that extends downward and anchors it to housing. No internal supports, although I may add some sound deadening of some kind.... the expanding foam idea is interesting, but I think it would be way to dense.

                  3. Printer is a FlashForge Guider 2. Essentially the big brother of the Flashforge Creator Max, but everything about it is a step up in quality.

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                  • #24
                    They will sound like a 3 inch full range. Potentially as well as they could, but pretty large overall for a 200 to 5K Hz speaker. I woudl be curious if the length of the tapered tube gives a second notch in addition to the port. Don't know. I have only built boxes.

                    Yes, there are liquid damping materials commonly used in cars. But being a tapered tube, I doubt you will have much of an issue. Only way to tell is to prototype.

                    My desktops are FE85's with small tweeters. I had to do considerable work to get them to behave up to 2500. Best B3 box I could get out of them is about 180 Hz. Doping lowers the Q of the breakup allowing an over-compensated Zobel and one notch. Increase in Mms did not change Vas much. I might look at the Dayton RS100 units. Still have breakup issues, but easier to deal with. One could cut down the frame edge a little to reduce the mounting diameter. Dust cap was a problem on the FE85. Similar problem on some Mark full ranges. I cut out the dust cap and fitted phase plugs. Now THAT would be a cool 3D printing project!

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                    • #25
                      Originally posted by tvrgeek View Post
                      They will sound like a 3 inch full range. Potentially as well as they could, but pretty large overall for a 200 to 5K Hz speaker. I woudl be curious if the length of the tapered tube gives a second notch in addition to the port. Don't know. I have only built boxes.

                      Yes, there are liquid damping materials commonly used in cars. But being a tapered tube, I doubt you will have much of an issue. Only way to tell is to prototype.

                      My desktops are FE85's with small tweeters. I had to do considerable work to get them to behave up to 2500. Best B3 box I could get out of them is about 180 Hz. Doping lowers the Q of the breakup allowing an over-compensated Zobel and one notch. Increase in Mms did not change Vas much. I might look at the Dayton RS100 units. Still have breakup issues, but easier to deal with. One could cut down the frame edge a little to reduce the mounting diameter. Dust cap was a problem on the FE85. Similar problem on some Mark full ranges. I cut out the dust cap and fitted phase plugs. Now THAT would be a cool 3D printing project!
                      "They will sound like a 3 inch full range".... HA!.... Yeah suppose I haven't set the bar very high now have I.... I just hope they're a significant step up from the typical Best Buy bluetooth boombox plastic speaker crap.

                      I'd love to see more about your FE85 2-ways.... I have considered adding a tweeter to these, but that is obviously much more of a project (crossover and all), and aesthetically I do like the purity of the one single driver. Like I said this thing is more sculpture than sound.

                      I did consider the RS100.... it was a while ago, I think ran into an issue with either the vented volume or the port length (I can't remember which)... also the look of it wasn't working for me for this project.... I really like the clean black/chrome of the FE85.

                      I think I'm going to use an aerosol sound dampening goo. I have the stuff and totally forgot. It's essentially dynamat in a can I think. . I should be able to reach 180 degrees or so around the back of the driver, and the whole port (masked off) as well. Couldn't hurt.

                      I'd love to see your FE85 project, gotta link?
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                      • #26
                        Originally posted by lunchmoney View Post
                        I'd love to see more about your FE85 2-ways.... I have considered adding a tweeter to these, but that is obviously much more of a project (crossover and all), and aesthetically I do like the purity of the one single driver. Like I said this thing is more sculpture than sound.
                        Jeff Bagby's Quarks used the FE83 but he said he thought the FE85 would work in post #1. They go down to 80Hz and get good reviews, so I'm sure they would sound better than Best Buy Bluetooth speakers. But is is possible to get the 3D printed design to get close to those results?

                        Pete Schumacher designed a full range speaker using the RS100 at DIYSoundgroup called the Ion 4. However, it is pretty big.

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                        • #27
                          No links. I'll snap a picture when next at my desk. I tossed all my documentation when I moved as I figured I was done building speakers, but new house, new needs.

                          84 Hz? No offence to Jeff, but maybe he has a bridge for sale. fs is 125 Hz. X max 3mm. Kind of like we say in cars, "ain't no displacement for displacement" The published plots I did not realize. Much worse breakup issues and no where the top end they claim. I originally built them as full range but basically top end was more breakup than music so added a crossover and tweeters. These are just desktop, not hi-fi. Still, we are talking $14 drivers here. I remember they are respected as tops in their class.

                          Now, I do like your thinking out of a box. You will have to deal with a high Q baffle step. Have you thought about using one of those DSP class D amps instead of trying to do everything with passive filters? Have you looked into Linkwatz transforms for a low Q sealed box? Have you thought about using your concept as a transmission line? For portable boom box, you want class D for efficiency. Some have the BT receiver built in.

                          PS: I have used several RS125's and 150's, but have not used the RS100. I found if you take care of the breakup, they are very low distortion. I played with the concepts for full range for a while. Foutek, Mark, Seas. It became pretty clear why we have multi-way drivers.

                          Idea, they make some tiny little pods for cars. Like 1 inch balls. One could stick one on top kind of like an eye. It would fit with your design concept.

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                          • #28
                            Just saw, they make an RS75. Claim 95 Hz in .05 cu ft. Look at PS95-8 , FR88EX, W3-1878 Getting expensive though.

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                            • #29
                              Originally posted by tvrgeek View Post
                              Just saw, they make an RS75. Claim 95 Hz in .05 cu ft. Look at PS95-8 , FR88EX, W3-1878 Getting expensive though.
                              Thanks I'll check them out. Adjusting the cad to a different driver is a lot of work, so perhaps for a future build.
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                              • #30
                                Interesting design. Why not? Drivers are cheap enough. Could be a nice 2.1 for pc.

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