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greg928gts

Cleaning the black painted areas of your speakers

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I found a good way to clean the painted black front baffles and rear covers of a pair of Heresy's and I thought I'd share it with all of you.

If you've ever tried to use paper towels or a rag to clean the rough painted areas of your speakers, you know that as you move towards the speakers, the lint from the paper towels or cloth just jumps right off onto the speaker before you even touch it! Forget about actually wiping.

I was in the process of restoring a pair of Walnut Heresy's and needed to clean up the dusty and dingy black areas. Here's a "before" picture.

post-11090-13819326439536_thumb.jpg

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So, I looked around the shop and found an applicator pad for stain that looked like it might work. I tried wiping it across the rough painted area and it didn't drag at all. It did leave some fibers, but those came off easily with a dry, clean paint brush.

I used a product called Black Again, which is something that I use when detailing cars.

Here's a picture

post-11090-13819326440346_thumb.jpg

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You don't need very much of it. Use the applicator to spread it around and kind of buff it into the wood. I cut the applicator to a very small size since I didn't have any large areas. After wiping it to an even sheen, I used a dry, clean paint brush to remove any fibers, and in the process the end of the paint brush picks up just a little of the Black Again and helps to even it out and drive it right into the corners. It made a huge difference in the look of these speakers. I will do just a little black paint touch up and they'll look better than new.

"After" picture.

post-11090-13819326441036_thumb.jpg

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Cool, is that second picture taken when it was all dry?

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It was taken right after I got done, but they still look that way a couple of days later.

Greg

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The old standby - mineral spirits - will also work well; does not degrade the laquer primer used on the rear panel, insets and motor board. Wipe off excess, wipe again with clean dry cloth. Usually last for about a year or so until the dust gets back in there. Motor boards are "funny"; I've seen them flat/ matte, semi-gloss, satin, smooth to heavy to light textured, "eggshell" textured (looks like your drywall latex, but black), sprayed on and several that appeared to have been simply "rolled on" with a paint roller. Rear panels range from nice smooth finish all the way to very rough, enough to grap threads off the rag.

For the real detailing afficionado... Take off the old velcro, then clean them up, and replace the velcro. The "hook" side on the motor boards get "hairy" over time.

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Is that Black Again stuff suitable for the outside of Black Birch La Scalas? Mine could sure use a touchup or two, and Sharpie marker isn't the best way to go...

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The KC-BB's and LS-BB's rear their ugly side again.... Last year I spent a fortune in time and effort to locate and buy the original Klipsch black laquer primer, black semi-gloss, #40 sheen laquer, and the #40 sheen clear to redo my KC-BB's, H-BB's.... Finally got a gallon of each through Sherwin Williams. The manufaturer is actually OPEX, and the product is Valspar lacquer. Really difficult time, no-one in a 200 mile radius wanted to special order, etc. 90% of the store employees told me (while picking their nose and listening to their Bose store system...) "If it's not in our catalogue, we can't get it..". The other 10% were just zombies so I left the stores, (BTW, what's High School afternoon jobs coming to?!!!). By the time I got the Valspar, I was only able to finish a couple of HBB's, and it was well into the winter season and the temperatures are not right yet for spraying. In any event, several weeks ago, i was in Walmart (don't laugh, that's the only big store in town since they ran everybody else out'a business...) and was in the paint department. Krylon has released a spray can lacquer in black and clear for about $2.99 a can.... So, for a small door panel that I needed to touch up, bought a can of each. Got finished, and the fumes having made me crazy.... and not wanting open the Valspar stuff again until I'm ready to go for broke, I sprayed a "puddle" from the Krylon can on a piece of plywood and headed to the KC-BB's, Using a small "artistes" brush, I touched up a couple of spots, and the next day came back and looked, Voila!! Slightly more gloss, so I got out a piece of 800 grit (yes they make it) and polished the spots and they blended into and matched the original. Did a puddle of clear and same treatment. Unless i'm at point blank range, I cannot see the spots. Since the KC's are next on the "list" of projects to do, I'm thinking of using that method to treat the scratch & nick filler, etc., until it's time for breaking out the Valspar, gun and compressor for the KC-BB's.

Islander: If you plan on doing the whole cabinets later, email me and I'll head to the workshop and find the OPEX/Valspar part numbers because your gonna' need alot to practice with and then shoot. You'll also need a HVLP finishing gun with a 1.3 mm nozzle (fine pattern). Takes about a pint of each for each K-horn, so will likely be about the same for the LS's, and extra to practice. You will need to find or make a paint booth with ventilation and a msk system. Doing it without ventilation is dangerous and you could have serious side effects to your health, not to mention the weird psychedelic side effects....

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Is that Black Again stuff suitable for the outside of Black Birch La Scalas? Mine could sure use a touchup or two, and Sharpie marker isn't the best way to go...

I would think it would work well. You can keep buffing it, and the sheen goes down and it dries nicely. Worth a try. I used to use Old English on my black painted La Scalas, but they weren't the lacquer paint.

I don't know if you can find Black Again at Wal-mart, and since Wal-mart has run every other business out of every town, you may not be able to buy it anywhere ever again.

Greg

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Thanks for the info, Groomlake, but I don't have the skills or location to use a spray gun (in my condo). I was just wanting to do a little touching up until I'm ready to take the speakers to a woodworking shop to have panels added to the sides and have the complete cabinets refinished. If it's done by pros, it'll be a lot more likely to look like a factory job. Not likely to happen until next year at the earliest.

I don't listen at high volume that often, so the bass bin flex isn't really on my mind that much. I'll email you another time about the part numbers.

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I restore and touch up quite a few pairs of speakers every week. On the black birch I've been using Minwax brand Ebony stain. I put it on with sponge and immediately wipe it off. It brings up the finish like new. A small can used sparingly will last a long time. Remember to stir very very well.

HarryO

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The Black Again probably works well for that application as far as appearance goes, but you may want to consider all aspects of the product before you use it.  I have used it for auto detailing.  Maybe not a problem for how you've used it.  But a word of caution, as it may be a big one for some...


Many products like these (there is another product called Back-to-Black that might be confused with Black Again) contain signicant amounts of silicone.  Many body shops will refuse to try to paint a part that has been treated with these products, because trace amounts always remain even after surface prep, and this can lead to cracking, spider-webbing, diificulty with adhesion, and other such problems.  If used on a porous surface like wood, the silicone would be even more difficult to remove. For those who might desire to refinish the speaker at some point, or have to in the case of damage (gasp), this may make the finish difficult to deal with or behave uncharacteristically.

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