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  1. I have a set of unmarked speakers that have very similar looking cabinets but they have a Brazilian soft dome tweeter and a 5.25” woofer with a passive radiator on the back. I had the laying around for years before I finally tools closer look at them and made new grills and made a new radiator. They have a crossover that looks like it could be either a simple factory or a home made that was well done as far as how it looks, covered with glue. They are decent sounding but are not good with any real power, maybe 25w, with minimal bass expectations. They are nothing compared to a set of Infinity RS125 that I paid $10 and refoamed in 10 minutes with $1 foam pieces I had laying around. I bought a ton of foam last year from Amazon before the seller's all jacked up their prices. I also have a set of obviously home made small sized speakers with Peerless drivers and huge crossovers Iike these, 2 ways but have Peerless k 4 inch woofers and paper tweeters. I would take a look for a set of good speakers that have bad tweeters and make new cabinet based on the woofers needs and see how they sound when the woofer is allowed to run up till natural roll off, you can always limit it if needed, you could try any woofer that's 8” or larger since you have a mid driver, I would consider a decent paper 10”. I have a few that came out of organs that are surprisingly well made, even an old zenith allegro 10” driver might work out nicely. They made a good woofer but not much else, can be found for cheap. Most people who are trying to sell organs will simply give them away if you come and pick them up. I had 4 lined up to pick up for free within 5 miles of my home, took 1 day to locate and set up pick up times. Retrieving the drivers is easy, getting the rest of the organ in the dumpster usually takes some time to tear into smaller pieces. They tend to use the same speakers in a bunch of different manufacturers organs, CTS were popular (alnico magnets) you'll find (paper cones) 12” drivers or 2x12” in many organs with an 8 or 10 on the spinner, all are excellent quality drivers. Although many tend to think that those drivers are more for guitar amps, there are more that are designed closer to home speakers than not. Example is the old Omega brand speakers (I believe they were made by DLK) that used CTS 12” woofers, exact same as used in many organs in the late 60s and throughouth the 70s. You might even get lucky and find some high $ speakers that were part of some of the best organ systems that have separate speaker boxes using 4x 12 or even 15'” or 18” woofers. Plus there will always be drivers inside the organs as well. You'll find the top brands like Hammond are harder to find for free, but they're out there, just have to keep an eye on ads and after 6 months to a year without any sales is a good time to offer free disposal. Another source I have found is console stereos, some used higher quality wave guide horn tweeters and 12” or 15” woofers, finding broken units with frozen turntables and wont turn on can result in free pick up as well. Not everything needs to be bought new when there's so much all around you that's being tossed in the garbage out of convenience.
  2. I had a set of series 1s for 10 years or so, cabinets had typical pealing veneer, water damage to top and bottoms. I originally had plans to black lacquer them and once I got started I realized that there was much more to it than expected. So I did what everyone does and just left them black with grain showing. After redoing several speakers in black lacquer over the years, I decided to do a set of series 2 that were in bad shape and did a complete money no issue type restoration that included rebuilding the corners edges and seams with a much more harder material. It took a good chunk of time and money but they turned out great. So after I picked up a 3rd series 1 for $30 which had a terrible cabinet and what I found later to be a water damaged but still working woofer, I decided the next project was to fix the bad job I started 10 years ago and turn the 3rd one into a center channel. I also came up with an unusual themed look for these 3 speakers that would set them apart from any other set in the world. I always figure that there's no sense spending time on anything if you're going through the trouble and spending the time to do it, you might as well make it your own creation. A simple veneer job will never be a project I would be planning, I would have a hard time getting excited to do it knowingly will end up looking like so many other thousands of speakers that are out there already. I want mine to be recognizable as my build just from seeing a picture from 10 feet away. After much thought I had to improve on the original without losing the original sound, since they were going to be stripped and I had full controller, I felt the best way to start was to move all driver's to the front of the motor board to remove the diffraction that was part of series 1s problems. Not only the diffraction at the edge of each hole but at the cabs front edges. They needed to be rounded or mitered. I chose rounded which may be the harder of the 2 since the paint was going to show any tiny defects. I opted to work with all original parts once again for the 2 mains which meant completely grinding down all sides to get a perfectly flat and true surface. Removing any cupping and maintaining edge thickness around the front was crucial. The way that the series 1 are made had a few problems from the start. The motor board is screwed to the framed strips attached to the inside but they are not cut to be precise and offer an airtight seal. So all seams and connections were sealed with glue them covered in Bondo for any large gaps. The next issue was the drivers themselves were not made to be front mounted, the casting was made with the side flanges having a thicker jumped area in the center where the seam was. Both the tweeters and mids displayed this casting issue. The had to be filed flat so all 4 sides were level. Since I wanted to move the drivers forward as far as possible so I could gain some volume and not lose any strength on the motor board I had to make the drivers appear to be inset into the board without actually cutting away any material. It also wanted it to have a very original look, a new texture that would make the entire speaker look as if it was made to not be covered up and hidden from sight. I then carefully cut pieces that fit like a glove over the drivers, I moved the horns together as tightly as possible to get their sound blended and as close to the woofer as possible without weakening the board. The result was possible while still allowing the drivers to have a sealed edge on all sides as long as great care was used during the trimming of the new cut outs. There's a 3/16” strip of wood left between the tweeter and mid just so they seal tight. The tweeters corners were ground to fit inside the mids. Foam tape was used to make airtight seals. The painting part was no longer as difficult as I had seen on other speakers, the plywood had a better more solid foundation that was much easier to seal especially on the edges. I found it did not need to be ground away and rebuilt as the series 2 cabinets needed. They did have their own set of challenges that needed to be addressed but there was much less ”redoing” as I progressed in comparison. The center channel needed to be completely fabricated and I drew up a plan for 2 designs, 1 would use a pair of DCM 5.5 ohm dual voice coil woofers and the other was for a pair of 16 ohm 10” woofers or a pair of 5.5 ohm dual voice coil. The 10” just called for a cab that was going to be quite a bit larger just to mount them. I went with the DCM and packed everything in tight as possible. I also made the cabinet to fit around the motor board. Grooving the sides and notching the front to make a tight dato fitting that could be glued airtight during assembly. I had a piece of 3/4” 10 ply veneered plywood that was big enough to make the cabinet no room for error. I did the same front mounting and covered the front with the same textured hardboard 3/16” panel, cut to fit exactly as possible. The ports were from some speakers I tore apart and tossed, I had 2 sets of them no idea what they came from. But they needed to be modded as well to flare the opening and make them smooth. JB Weld did the trick, I have plans to cover the 12” woofers with a similar metal grill but haven't found the right one. It has to fit directly on the edge of the basket as the smaller ones do. I cannot have a frame under it or anything that's larger in size since it has no room available with the front cover cut exactly to fit. I may have to make my own by hand. The sound has greatly improved even better than the series 2 by a long shot. I did have to move the autoformer settings and added a 15 ohm 10watt resisted in parallel with the mid to smoothen the response. The overall look was exactly what I was looking for and the bonus was the much improved sound. I think I have made a near perfectly timbre matched center with the most unique look possible, all pieces are mirror finish black lacquer (that has become my finish of choice on anything I do now) just to make sure that these will stand out as another one of my creations and very less likely to ever see another in existence. This set of 3 has been named the ”Tiki Series” the mask of the warrior is a very close rendition of my final creation.
  3. I have 1 that's in really rough shape but it does work, I'm in Phoenix as area
  4. Sounds like my speakers but mine were cupped about 1/4” on the short sides and 3/8" on the long sides. Plus working with MDF is like trying to paint cardboard and not expecting it to swell up. I had to use a few tricks to seal the seams edges and rebuild the corners.
  5. Yes they did, but they do that with everything now a days! That's just a fact of life that we can't change, it's buy or blow em up! We have to make that choice every day. From what I've read they seem to be pretty accurate but it might be hit or miss.
  6. To clarify what I was saying, since you ended up changing out just about everything except the squaker you could have just not bought those speakers for the original $450, but instead bought a sheet of good 10 ply plywood that already had the veneer on it and could have had Lowe's or home Depot cut it for you right away. Then your project could have been altered to fit the speakers you were buying, also your project would have taken a bit longer as you were saying it was moving too fast. Well assembly of the cabinets would have also enabled you to insert bracing and do a bit of research into making those cabinets. I'm not bashing you in any way, I think your speakers turned out very nice. I'm looking at this from the point of view that after it was all said and done you really only have a Klipsch cabinet with 1 true Klipsch speaker in it , Am I wrong? When I started my heresy project my main goal was to make sure I didn't change a thing as far as shape, and mechanics, no new cabinets, no new drivers, reuse every single screw, just make over the very abused cabinets and make them into something that very few if any others have but make sure to keep the the speakers a true Klipsch Heresy but not anything that Klipsch would ever attempt to do. And I'm not saying paint them psychedelic or use product names or pictures, but keep them very classy and enhance their value well beyond their actual worth. But make them appealing and fit into decor no matter what type. So I had a plan, see that's the difference, you also had a plan, obviously you knew that they needed some work and you wanted to try your hand at veneer. That's great, you did a fantastic job, as good or better than most who have tried it or have been doing it. To me that's kind of like going to Baskin Robbins and getting vanilla (vanilla is my favorite flavor of any food out there, I will always order anything vanilla, but I will look for the strangest vanilla flavored thing can get before I settle on the generic one), so if I were to veneer a set of these fine speakers I would be hunting for some very unusual grained veneer and consulting experts in the field if need be to find out what to stay away from and why. Then I would contact people who (in this case I would have been on the guitar restoration forums picking their minds on what would really be the ****, what's going to make a statement?) are in the know about working with different woods and stains and colors that can make wood look like nothing you've ever seen before. Techniques that are basically unknown to us speaker geeks. Those guys can provide so much information just by spending a week or 2 reading old forum posts. The old ones are best because they are complete projects that others have chronicled. Their mistakes, their triumphs, their heart breaks, costs, panic and then the alation, the final product done perfect, like nobody else's. Shown in pictures on display for the world to see. The weeks of time, the hours spent searching for the right materials. The lessons learned on the way. It's all right there. I found my way there as I started my project and realized that there was quite a few things that can and will go wrong when dealing with paint. Even if you've painted a bunch of stuff in your life. Plastic Models, Die Cast cars that sold for $100 due to your restoration, wood chairs, Wood tables, metal cars, your own car, maybe somebody else's car, projects at work that were huge. But when it comes to painting a speaker or doing anything with a speaker cabinet you find out that many things can and will go wrong. Each and every time I had to start over was another $100! After 3 times you will want to know why things happen and how to avoid them. But there is no set plan, each project brings its own new set of issues. Mine was 30 year old wood that had water damage with splits in the veneer and cupping on all 4 sides. I knew that before I started, nobody deals with these obstacles, they simply trash it and make a new cabinet, simple, done, just saved 2 months work and $300 by making a new cabinet. So there wasn't anyone to tell me how to work with what I had. But there are people who work with old wood and make them into pieces of art every day. That's when I thought about guitar restoration, that's how I was able to get started and I had to add my own ideas to apply it to wood that isn't a solid piece, I had seAms and corners and I didn't have a solid piece of wood but rather several joined pieces of MDF to work with. So many things just don't apply. That's where you have to set yourself apart from conventional thinking, knowing that you won't be able to get the answers you need to complete your dream is frustrating and can be costly too. But someone has to be the one to do it first no mater what, if you want to create something that will thrill people when you unveil it you have to power through the disappointments, you can't just give up, you cannot compromise on your dream. When you have a dream and you combine a bunch of hard work long days and many of them with bunch of money and hope you can achieve some fantastic results. Knowing that your creation is like no other even though you took a very common place item and did nothing accept to change its exterior finish but what you have done is so sublime, so perfect, so satisfying that the look and feel have to be experienced to be appreciated. Mere pictures can only convey the visual beauty so far, the seeing up close and touching it finalizes the senses, it provides a reality to what you just spent 2 months of 10 hour or longer days working on. Putting everything else on hold in your life, that's the satisfaction I'm talking about, not I wanted to try something and it cost $xxxx. The cost is only there because nothing gets done for free, it's not even that the materials were expensive or rare, it's because that's what's it takes to get the job done right, no compromise. I would never simply paint a speaker cabinet without thinking I was making it a one of a kind, the kind of one that people see and they react, mostly in disbelief or shock in the beauty. The more simplistic things are the more the beauty can be seen. That's why my project ended up looking like this, absolutely unchanged every single last screw was used every piece of wire, crossover components etc. I planned on spending around $200 to $300 to achieve my goal and maybe 2 weeks time. 8 hours max each day, that quickly changed, I adapted and stayed focused. This is what I ended up with.
  7. I have an esr meter on the way, from what I've read they tend to be the best meters available now based on a kit but now China has picked up the production on them and is selling them in Mass quantities at very low cost. They used to be around $40 for the kit, now they sell for $8 without cases and up, most expensive ones are around $80 but they don't really do anything extra over the $8 models except have a nice case, a lipo battery and loop connector leads to do in circuit testing oh I forgot they also id components, and some have IR sensors readers for audrino and other remote programming. They can decide the signals so users know what the remotes are actually emitting per key press. These meters are really pretty slick and they have been praised by most all the who buy them. Some have input headers onboard to update firmware. Some will only ready caps up to 1000mf while others go up to 100kmf but take a while to display results. Some have color screens others are green and yellow, some come with cases and leads others are still in kit form. Hundreds of sellers on Amazon and hundreds maybe thousands on eBay. I should have mine in a week, I can finally find out what transistors I have when I bought a bag full of brand new in packages (maybe 100 or more pieces) from an old car stereo shop closing sale on eBay about 10 years ago. They say "ERS 153" (Exact Replacement Semiconductors) but I can't find any data sheets. I'm hoping they're substitutes for the old MTX and RF car amps that used the "Buzz" transistors. They're supposedly from the early to mid 90s, that's what the other items were dated in the lot I bought. Locking pull out plate by Craig, FM stereo tuner that plugs into an 8 track tape slot, various din cords, etc.. the meter should tell me what it is and give a bias voltage and tell pins at minimum it just depends on what it has on file for this piece. Some items have nearly full data sheet info available.
  8. I first covered mine in a textured vinyl for $8 a roll and they ended up looking like a pro audio version of the heresy. I tore it off and started my oddessy and what I thought was a never ending refinish. My cabinets were badly neglected. All 4 sides were cupped to a point where I ended up sanding through the veneer trying to get them flat, level and maintain an even thickness. But I made sure to reinforce all corners, edges and seams, making them harder and more durable than they were new. No shortcuts, no worries of cost or time, I ended up finding out what worked as I went along. Here's some of my work. Grinding away the seams and corners. Then filling with crazy glue and baking soda, 1 drop at a time. This made them sealed (no possible way to end up with a crack in the paint) and reinforced the edges strength. It was tested by a nearby speaker rolling off a chair and bouncing on the ground while spinning it's sharp veneer edge hit the finished edge directly on the center of the seam edge. It chipped the paint but did not even ding the material. I did end up having to respray the entire cab to fix the chip. But I found out that what I did was worth the effort.
  9. I can't totally agree that things are made better now than they were 30 years ago simply because anything that was built between 2000 and 2005 was doomed for failure due to the millions of improperly made capacitors that were used in just about everything. I've seen my share of good caps go bad in modern electronics even Panasonic and Elna brands almost daily I'm tearing something apart that's dated 2000 to 2013 with failed caps, but I have a stack of maybe 10 or more receivers from the 70s and 80s that I use daily and none of them have any bad caps in them. Infact I'll bet I could go to a Goodwill and buy 10 electronics devices dated after 2000 and make sure they all power up, take them apart and I'll see at least 3 with bad caps, and that's not including any monitors. If I picked out only monitors, half or more will have bad caps. I have a crt tv that I bought new in 1983, it still works, I tore apart a bunch of crt monitors that all worked back in 2010, bought a bunch of LCD and led monitors to replace them and over half of them had bad caps! I just tore open a power supply yesterday and all of the caps that were marked "low esr" were bad and no others had issues, I'm going to look for that board and post a picture of it. I had to laugh when I saw the low esr caps mentioned just hours after I saw those. Those are also the culprits that go bad in monitors, i replace them with regular caps and they have outlived the originals by 3 or 4 years now without any failures, those replacements were torn out of old vcrs and crt monitors and tvs from the early 80s to mid 90s they already were in use longer than the caps that they replaced and still work! There was mention of believing others that know more about things so they are to be believed based on that fact, let me ask 1 thing, do they have a vested interest in capacitor sales or parts? Because there is such a thing as a sales man, I'm not sure if you ever heard about these guys but they study up on the things they need to say to convince you to buy crap you don't really need and make it sound quite convincing since they are going to be making money from your purchase they have no interest in telling you anything other than their benefits even if they are marginal or even questionable. Because that's what they have to do to make money, they can be very convincing and even make you feel that you are completely wrong if you don't buy into what theyre telling you. That's what makes a great salesman, making you believe they're right and make you willing to argue their point even when it's been proven that what they are saying is simply opinions and when actual tests are conducted using different higher quality caps, in a controlled environment double blind tests show that people cannot hear the difference, it's nearly a guessing game at that point and the numbers cannot even be repeated. There's a sound engineer who heard of this craze when it started a few years back he has a web page and that tells how he wanted to test different caps that were labeled as superior sounding to others. So he built 4 identical crossover networks using different caps and mounted them outside of the cabinets. He then connected them through a ultra fast relay that can switch crossovers so quickly there is no lag in sound, meaning when they are changed there is no delay, it should just sound different when switched. The idea was to have people listen and tell when they heard the difference and which ones sounded the best. He had a stage and a remote to switch the relays all set up and was ready to test it out. He turns on the music gets into position and clicks the button and clicks the button and clicks the button? He figures the relays are not powered up because he didn't hear any differnce but when he walks closer to the speakers he can see the relays are working just fine! End of testing.
  10. I would not even start stripping any paint off of old veneer, for what reason would you want to do this? What do you think the results are going to be? You'll never get clean untouched wood after it's been painted black! The veneer is too thin to even consided trying to save it. Paint soaks into the grain of the wood and will fill every single hole and sanding it off of a 1/16” thick surface is not going to leave you any veneer. On top of it all, as stated, if solvents are used they will simply loosen the glue and the veneer will peel off. Bottom line is, the cost of trying to save what is probably a bad veneer is going to take forever and cost more than simply peeling it off and redoing it right. Plus it will look 100 times better than you'll be able to get that old bad veneer to look no matter how much time and money you spend. Or you can sand it down to where the veneer is perfectly flat again, it might even need to sand right through it in spots just to get it all one height, then seal it prime it wet sand, prime again, check for flaws, then 20 or more coats of lacquer, wait a week then sand it to a mirror finish, start at 220 grit, then wetsand with 500, then 1000, then 2000, wait 2 days, then if no flaws appear, shoot 30 coats of clear gloss acrylic lacquer top coat, wait a week, wet sand with, 500, 1000, 2000 and then 3000. Wait 2 days look for flaws, find flaws, strip the entire thing and start over but this time grind all seams and edges away about 3/8" deep using a hard wheel on a grinder. Then rebuilt all seams corners and edges using crazy glue and baking soda, this seals everything and provides a durable tough as nails edge that will last forever. Grind it all flush with the wood and redo all prior steps that you just learned. After a few months of daily work (work on 1 cabinet, then leave it sit and do the other) and $300 to $500 you should end up with something that looks like this.
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