Sometime in mid-2012, the building of speakers was a topic at the weekly meeting for dining and drinking. It turned out quickly that two friends have already had some experience with the works of LoudSpeakerBuilding.com. One of the two had the Queen at home and was very satisfied, the second was stuck in the middle of the project and somehow had lost the motivation to finish. The BlueNote towers were built and polished for the most part. It was simply a matter of finding an appropriate dress for the MDF. WAF is the top dog here. So it was decided by the better half to simply keep the speakers in white. I could rekindle the motivation and help to make the BlueNotes sing.
What’s this got to do with my princesses? It is simple. I got caught up in it from the first moment and I couldn't help building something too.
I browsed around a long time on these web pages, informed myself, compared and still didn't know what I wanted. Clear, if I did it, then Iwould do it right. But which ones?! I couldn't decide for the longest time until one evening once again I saw the construction report by Justus. There is a wonderful size comparison of the various speakers which finally made it clear to me that there was actually only one. The pair of princesses!
No sooner said than done! I ordered the components in the Intertechnik shop and briefly thought about whether I should just take the construction proposal or if I wanted to create something on my own. This time, the question was answered much more swiftly. I quickly decided on a construction proposal and armed with a piece of paper, went to the home improvement store to order the MDF.
Excited I went home with my purchased material and put everything together. -With horror I discovered that the parts did not fit together in the front and back... Don't get angry; back to the home improvement store. Unfortunately, the good colleagues do not take back cut material. So I had no choice but to place the same order again. While this second attempt was not perfect either, I already had a certain idea of how I could disguise the (lack of) motivation of the employees. So I accepted the result and made myself scarce.
When it came to gluing, I was fortunately able to count on the help of my better half. While it is not a tremendously complicated affair, two extra hands are always welcome.
I don't know how joint glue works... But this ordinary wood glue has a number of pitfalls (slipping of the MDF panel when tightening the screw clamps, for example). But so be it. We were able to get the two boxes together well enough and quit for the first evening.
I soon took the two cabinets to the workshop and sanded away the most serious inconsistencies. I then drew a line where the chassis would later be located and I was able to start working with the router. The homemade router compass made me very happy. Up to the point where I did not tighten the wing nut tight enough and the machine no longer maintained its fixed radius. – Just great…
After thinking for a moment, I fixed the nut on the largest radius and incorrectly milled the entire groove to the same extent in order to later set a ring in it with this radius. I'll let these pictures speak volumes.
Ok, the first obstacle was overcome. I cursed the router compass for a moment. Right after that, I briefly cursed myself, because I had made the tool myself and went back to work..
Cut everything out and made space for the terminal. Finished. Well, at least for the moment. I could not stop myself from taking the two, still naked princesses home and working on the frequency crossover construction. The speakers were thus in operation for a moment. But the MDF box is not very attractive and somehow seemed podgy. So they went back under the knife.
I had a certain idea of what was the boxes should look like. A possibility of getting to the gist of the matter revealed itself in a flash of insight.
Ok granted, I was somewhat in a hurry. So it happened that I produced quite a mishap out of pure haste and impatience. The saw had a very small contact face, so as I was making the first cut, I tilted more and more into the clippings. - The fact is that I only realized that I could simply use the second box as a support after the fourth step... Better late than never.
The bezel was evened out with the wood plane. But this damage bothered me even more than that damage made with the router compass. In the next step, the whole surface was sanded and prepared for the veneer. I veneered using the iron-white glue method. I'm still fascinated that it works so well. When refinishing it, I got help again from my very patient girlfriend.
After grinding the veneer, there only remained the task of treating the surface after assembly. As I mentioned, I had certain ideas which I would not do again today. I wanted to paint the speakers. An acquaintance is a painter and does hardly anything else all day except paint cars. I was at the right address. We agreed on off-peak hours so that I could do the grinding myself and the bottom line was that I only had to pay for the material and add something to the register. The picture shows before and after the first application (to fill the pores with liquid 2k clear coat). The veneer absorbed quite a bit of paint. So, the surface was sanded and painted again. They were still not ready, so it another layer was applied. Real guzzlers, the two princesses. Only after the fourth application did we give each other the OK to go on to the next step.
Now everything was again finely sanded and the front covered. All the rest was further treated three times with a mixture of clear lacquer and black lacquer until the sides were dark enough against the front. After drying, I applied a clear coat over the whole box. The material cost me a good € 400 (paint and abrasive material). There's almost as much paint on it as on a car. A nerve-racking project which I will not do a second time. I am very satisfied with the result, that is not the problem, but the effort is immense. Next time, I'll treat the veneer with oil.
Here they are, the two beauties - on a throne made of granite and fired by a SymAsym Mono power amplifier. A wonderful sight and an even better listening experience! Everything seems so real, effortless and clear, like it was always there. With the previous speaker system, I did not have anything approaching this resolution and such details. It goes so far that I thought I had made a mistake during the construction of the frequency crossovers. A sound which really sounds like a defective tweeter... just kind of broken... but it turns out that it is coming from the piece of music! I just hadn't noticed it previously!
I can fully recommend this adventure!
Best regards Maurizio
What I learned:
- Remeasure wood before paying for it.
-A groove in the side panels as in the original report; would have helped with the gluing.
- Always take your time. Do not rush and make careless mistakes.
-Veneering and then milling out the space for the chassis... that took a lot of time.
- No more painting. But, if you do, not with 2k car paint