Help Needed For Speaker Cabinet

Discussion in 'Guitar Gear Talk Forum' started by ronnieanand, Sep 16, 2005.

  1. ronnieanand

    ronnieanand n00bier th@n th0u

    One of my immediate projects is to make a 1x12 or preferably a 2x12 speaker cabinet. I have a few queries on this. Please help me with some links or some know hows. I have been googling on this and couldn't get much good info.

    1. Choice Of Wood:
    I prefer a very dark sound, so I thought about Mahagony. Price of Mahagony might be an issue. Another option is to look at some Rosewood or Teakwood which I can try to cannibalize from from old wood shop. Other options are Plywood or Particle Wood. I get various reviews and I am not sure which one to choose. Any idea how are they Marshall or the Celestion Cabinets made. I mean the exact wood they use.

    2. Choice Of Speakers:
    After hearing the Eminence at Tulasi I am getting biased towards Eminence. There are lot of reviews which rates it much clearer than what Celestion can be. I have shortlisted Eminence Legend series and the model numbers I am looking at V12 or 121. Both are 100+Watt stuffs and a 12" Full Range. The one I heard in Tulasi is 121 and it's awesome. There are good reviews about V12, so thinking about that too.

    3. Cabinet Design:
    I currently have the dimensions of a Vox 2x12 Cabinet and I was thinking of copying it. But any cabinet design ideas or links or personal experiences would be really helpful.

    Throw in some light.
  2. shak

    shak Harrr!

    i think the speaker board (if thats the correct terminology) should be as thick as possible ... i would say a 1.5cm at least .. and as far as the wood is concerned .. mahagony seems the right choice .. but dont you think it would make the amp heavy? the marshalls and ol vox's arent very heavy so it might be a clue to what wood is used to make them ..
    speakers? naa no idea here .. although i did had a small tweeter speaker with a 2.2uf cap in series installed on my 150r marshall ... gives a shrilly treble .. much needed because the wood damped the treble response from the main driver ..
    cab design? you keepin its back open or closed? and what circuit are you using?
    i would say go for the vox shape .. cuz its well understood and well crafted .. no need to experiment here ..
  3. ronnieanand

    ronnieanand n00bier th@n th0u

    Hi Shahrukh,
    Since I am using only a Full Range, there is no requirement of any kind of cross over network. The back of the cabinet being open or close depends on the choice of speakers. If the speaker is bright, then I will go for a closed Cabinet or if the speaker has a lot of bass response and lesser treble, then I would for for a closed Cabinet. The 121 Eminence is a bright sounding one, so I might keep partly closed becasue it has tremendous amount of bass too.
    Any links please ??
  4. h4f0n

    h4f0n New Member

    What type of sound are you looking for?

    Celestion V30s and GH12s are popular for most types of modern rock, while Blue Alnico ones are great for the old classic rock sound. Generally Celestions are better than Eminence, altho lower priced celestion aren't great.....

    You could make the Cabinet both open and closed by cutting out the back and then attach latches to it, get the idea? It could make it pretty versatile. I guess mahogany is a bad idea, it would make it way too heavy. Check out what other manufacturers use and decide along the lines of your favourite brand.

    Also remember the impendace issues!

    Good luck man and post pics of the progress if oyu can.
  5. ronnieanand

    ronnieanand n00bier th@n th0u

    I am looking at a cabinet that will sound evil and dark. Well I am not a Metal Player. I am a Blues Rock player. You could call it Evil Blues with Happy Themes.
    Even I have been thinking of dropping Mahagony. Even it's costlier. I checked out V30 and GH12 from Celestion but I got better reviews on 121 and V12. That was the reason I decided on this Eminence.

    Actually I couldn't really get information on how Celestion or Marshall make their cabinets. I searched for a few weeks and gave up hope. That's why I have posted it here. I saw some small Mahagon Cabinets and that's why this idea.

    I am aware of this impedence matches. This open / close with a latched door seems to be a nice idea. Thanks for it. Now the main issue is the choice of wood.
  6. h4f0n

    h4f0n New Member


    here is site that might help you out Avatar

    Send the guy an email, i've heard he is quite friendly and helpful.

    Also if your looking to build a 2x12, you could use 2 different speakers, that would be really interesting! I've heard celestion vintage 30s and G12H (made a mistake in the post before) sound really good together.
  7. abhijitnath

    abhijitnath Fighting GAS frantically

    Most assembly line cabs are made from ply (I think birch in the case of Marshalls) and not from solid wood to keep weight down. Then a top layer of veneer is applied (as in Mesa Boogie) for beauty or whatever. MAybe you could try the same to keep down weight as well as cost.
  8. ronnieanand

    ronnieanand n00bier th@n th0u

    Some more updates. I checked out that Birch Plywood is not available here in Bangalore. Only the Pine Plywood is available. Solid Birch wood is not available at the required dimensions too. Another option is MDF but some people have seriously adviced me not to consider MDF. Any other options. Current available ones are MDF and Pine Plywood. How thick should I have the wood. 1" looks a bit too thick but I am not sure if I should consider 3/4" ones.

    Currently I am thinking of getting one Eminence 121 12" and one Korean one 12" (Forgot the name). I used the Korean one is another cabinet and it was really good and has tremendous bass in it. The 121 has a tight bass and sparkling highs. Pretty much a clean sounding one with ver little break up. I am thinking of combining these two for what I think would turn out to be a killer.
  9. sanjivdas

    sanjivdas New Member

    mahogany wood? not for speakers


    As far as I know, you CANNOT use mahogany or for that matter, any solid wood for the cabinet. Check any cabinet, the wood they use are particle board and Meduim Density Fibre (MDF) board.

    Solid would has too much reflections and a certain frequencies, the phases will resonate and you will get awful sound. MDF or Particle board needs to be used because they minimise reflections inside the cabinet. Not only guitar cabinets, even music speakers, like Jamo, B&W, Wharledale everyone uses particle or MDF boards. They use PVC laminates on the wood to give them the wood finish.

    You can put together a normal MDF cabinet yourself. In case you want to give it some fancy cuts, I can refer you to a place who ProFX outsource their speakers to. But that might be expensive.

    My two bits.

  10. ronnieanand

    ronnieanand n00bier th@n th0u

    Hi Sanjiv.
    Thanks for the suggestions. Actually solid wood can be used for cabinets. They are lot of high end boutique solid wood that are used. There are some draw back with using solid wood. It tends to warp and another thing is the cabinet become inexcusably heavy. There are cabinets made of Mahagony as well as solid birch woods. But usually for solid ones, they dont go beyond the sizes of 1x12 or 2x12. Denser the wood, the better is the bass response, so solid wood naturally has much tighter sounding bass. From a different forum I was strictly advised not to consider MDFs for making Guitar Cabinets unless I dont have any other option. Most high end cabinets are made of Baltic Birch Plywood. We dont get Birch Plywood, so I am planning to use Pine Plywood for the cabinet. Mostly I will use 1" board for the face and 3/4" on the other sides. Maybe for the back, I will use a thinner plank of Solid Birch Wood. Currently I am thinking of keeping the back partially open, so that it's tonally between the open and closed back.
    I have currently bought a Dainty 12" Full Range. Was planning to get an Eminence too but have fallen short of $e$$terittie, so I will buy another Dainty only for the time being.
  11. ronnieanand

    ronnieanand n00bier th@n th0u

    Speaker Cabinet Work Started

    I bought the wood and got it cut in a Saw Mill. I didn't much choice of woods. So I went with 3/4" MDF for the Front and Sides. 1/2" Pine Wood Ply for the Top, Bottom and also for the back.

    The Dimensions are

    Front Face: 15" Wide and 30" Tall
    Sides: 12" at the Bottom and 10" at the Top. This will make the cabinet look slightly slanted.
    Back: I wanted to get the best of Open and Closed Cabinet, so I just planned to to put two 5" Strips on the back vertically with 5" gap along the whole length.
    I also got the round holes done for both the speakers.

    Hope this dimension is okay. In case something is wrong please let me know.

    Next thing is about joining the pieces together. Do you think, I can just glue and put some screws and will still be strong enough. Is it requires to make corner air tight. If I have to make it air tight, then what is the procedure. Anyway the cabinet is partially open at the back.

    Also should I do something to protect the wood like coating it with a wood primer or something.

    Tolex is not available here. Can I use some thin rexin which is like a leather imitation and paste it all over the board.

    Suggestions please.
  12. shak

    shak Harrr!

    sorry to jump in .. but just read the word MDF! ... ronnie my mate .... do not go for mdf what ever you do!! .. mdf= medium density fibre boards ... they are construction grade boards .. NOT at all for speaker cabinets
  13. shak

    shak Harrr!

    try doing slotted wood joints or dovetails .. to make the joins airtigt ..
    OR ... to glue and screw .. and then dribble some hot silicon all along the joint .. maybee this will help .. and yeah i think hide glue is the best option for joining woods ..

    as for the wood coating ... the best in my mind is lacquer.. but that will give it a sheen .. if you dont want it .. maybe simple rubbing with the tung oil .. umm varnish is also a presevant but it will colour the wood .. will check on this tho

    the amp cover , yeah .. go for the rexin or vinyl .. next best thing .. or if you can just spend a bit extra and go buy raw leather sheet from whole sellers ... then ... nothin could be better,, and i dont think it will be very expensive.
  14. ronnieanand

    ronnieanand n00bier th@n th0u

    Thanks Shahrukh. Making Dove Tails is a great idea but it's suitable only for Solid Wood. For these kind of Fibreboard, Dove Tails aren't preferred. Making Glue and Screw joint seems to be the only option. How do I get this silicon. This seems to be a good idea to seal the holes. Actuall I had MDF as my last option. I couldn't get things like Birch Ply or Solid Birch. That's the reason I went to MDF. I had some mixed reviews about MDF. Some were good and some were extremely bad. Only Pine Wood Ply or Silver Wood Ply was available here. So I used MDFs for the Front and the Sides and used the Pine Wood Ply for the top, bottom and the back. Since I have bought and got everything cut, I will currently go with this. If things turn out bad, then I will try some other means to get Birch Ply or whatever is available. I am having not much choice here :mad: even if I am willing to spend a bit. Anyway if this comes out good, next I might try out a 4x10 Cabinet.
    Raw leather seems great. I always wanted Leather but was scared of the price getting too high. Anyway will go and check out the price of everything. I will also check out for Vinyl and see whatever is good. Also for the front I have currently put the Metal Grills to protect the speaker but I would love to put a Fender Tweed Type Fabric. Again I am not sure about the availability, so I will have to look for some other alternative. This time I will try to work a bit more for the cosmetics too. Anyway the whole thing of a 70W Solid State Head and this 2x12 Cabinet is not going to cost me more than Rs.5500. I will dispose my little Marshall MG15CDR and get some cash :).

    The Wood coating is mainly for protection only. I am going to anyway cover the thing with rexin. I just dont want moisture to screw up hard work. I am almost at my little Garage Workshop till 1am every morning and I dont want this to go waste.
  15. shak

    shak Harrr!

    oh yeah ... dovetails wont be suitable in this case ... the tails would just rip out .. ..
    and silcon is available in thin white sticks .. you just melt them and pour them ..they set in half a minute or so .. you can get them from the guys who make aquarium tanks .. cuz thats wht they use to seal the joints ..
    adn the raw leather shouldnt cost you much .. or try go looking for old ragged leather jackets in flea market can always get some good salvage material from flea markets .. otherwise the rexin is second best thing ..
    tweed! .. it wil be excellent if you can get that ... umm..the first thing that comes to mind is those jute sacks! know those which are used t export rice etc. ... get really refined jute .. could work as tweed .. or close to that ..
  16. ronnieanand

    ronnieanand n00bier th@n th0u

    @Shahrukh. You are being unbelievably helpful. Reps to you :beer: and Beer to you when we meet anytime.

    I will try to arrange for the silicon right away. There are some Aquarium shops nearby. What is a Flea Market. Never heard of something like that. I will check for Raw Leather or see if I can some kind of Leather within my budget. If nothing else works, then I will go for the Vinyl or Rexin. Jute Sack seems to be a great idea. I will try to get some well refine and well finished jute cloth. I dont think it's gonna be difficult.
  17. shak

    shak Harrr!

    oh yeah! i do deserve a beer now .. lol
    umm flea market is where you get all that rejected secondhand stuff you know .. the defected thingies .and electrical junk? .. i dunno what u call them back home ..
    but yeah rexin should work really well .. my as-150r has rexin on it ... and it looks pretty good ..
    as far as the silicon goes... it shouldnt be costly at all .. its really cheap if it works..... fine.... otherwise you can throw it away :p .. lol jk .. it will work .. but it will look messy tho long as u use that inside the box .. it should be ok
  18. ronnieanand

    ronnieanand n00bier th@n th0u

    Flea Market :think: Second Hand Good Market :think: . Never heard of such a market anyway. I will make some enquiries and see if something like that exists in Bangalore.
  19. ronnieanand

    ronnieanand n00bier th@n th0u

    Okay. Now I have bought the Silicon Gel also. Luckily it comes in tube and I dont have to heat it, melt it and things like that. I got it from a hardware store. I trying to get a good handle for the cabinet. I couldn't get one here in Bangalore. I am leaving for Chennai tonite, so I will give it a shot. One my friend is into Speaker Cabinet and Home Theater business. He might have some of those handles, so let me check up with him. :beer:
  20. ronnieanand

    ronnieanand n00bier th@n th0u

    Went to Chennai for the weekend. I bought some nice handles for the cabinet. These handles are made of Metal and heavy duty good enough to be fit for a 4x12 Cabinet. All the initial work is done for the cabinet. So today or tomorrow I will start to assemble my cabinet.
    Now planning to built a 50W Amp Head with two channel to drive this Cabinet.

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