I had a small get together at the house for some guys who are into DIY audio. They were gracious enough to come out, bring some of their own speakers, and then do an analysis of my Cornscala's.
I finished fabricating a second pair of grills for the lower cabinets on the Cornscala's. I ruined a yard of fabric and lost a day or so by not sizing them correctly. I am just not a great upholstery guy, and I still am not happy with the results. But for now they will do and the woofers are protected. Not sure yet what I will do about the uppers. The fabric is from Bob Crites and is the same as what is currently used on the Klipsch Heritage series speakers.
I tried two techniques for doing the textures for the Cornscala's. I knew that the textured area would be problematic for cleaning, and I wanted to try and solve that. I also was looking at what the difference would be like between using a truck bed liner versus a pebble spray. And last I had to make sure the various layers of products would all be compatible, especially as the assembly would be complete and irreversible before the final laquer process.
This picture shows the sample piece, with the pebble spray texture on the left, and the truck bed liner on the right.
This sample sat in the corner of the shop while I finished spraying the Cornscala's, so it was covered in dust and grime. I wiped it down with a regular paper towel and Endust. It came away completely clean with very minimal fuzzing from the towel. The products and order of application is below:
I chose to use the textured paint for the speakers. A couple of things to think about. Doing it again I would go to 3 coats and maybe 4 of the Multi-Color Texture. The whole idea is to get a uniformity of texture and color so it has a nice finished look and feel. You get a much nicer even look by doing multiple light coats of the texture. The Varicure is tough as heck, and will stand up to a lot of household cleaners even though it is a laquer. I don't know that I would go wiping it off every day, but for normal cleaning I would think it should last for a very, very long time.
The truck bed liner is a good option, but it is hard to notice the texture without angled light. It ends up just looking like flat black paint from a distance. I tend to want a more grainy surface and now that I am comfortable with being able to clean it this is a good choice for me.
Getting ready to do the neck pickup route on Telecaster #3. This body is black American walnut over mahogany. I would like to do a Lollar pair in this, maybe with a humbucker in the neck position. I need to finalize that choice today so I can finish the neck milling and move on to finishing both of these guitars.
I really want to do a long post or project page and explain exactly how these all went together, but there is just no time at all for that now. Here are a few pictures. They sound so, so good.
I love the backs. The whole design has this vintage feel, and they sound great with many types of music. I still need to break them in to see what I really have, and I would like to get someone to measure them sonically.
The little mini audio stand works well and it gave me an extra 5 inches or so on the front so I could tighten everything up.
The final coat of laquer went down a few hours ago and it looks like I will finally be able to put the living room back together tomorrow. The new products I am using on this project have been great, and the results are pretty good. The guys over at Chicagoland Finishing Materials were extremely helpful. They really took the time to listen to me about my project, my equipment and then make a recommendation. I went with the Chemcraft Variseal and their Varicure precat laquer.
The upper cabinets have been a pain to complete. I went ahead and reinforced the tops, got the batting in and a support for a cross brace. The motorboards were installed, and finally the dampening was completed. FINALLY, I think I can spray these.
Here are a few more pictures from this evening. The first shows the bottom and how it overlaps the butt joint on the lower part of the cabinet. This helps reinforce that joint that is holding all the weight of everything above it.
Then a picture of the front of the upper cab with the textured side panels in place. This shows how far back the panels extend to reinforce those vertical walls.
Then a shot of the final bit of work this evening. I took the spare motorboard that I blew up with the router and used it to test fit the horn. Now I can build the support in the back to hold that driver. Gotta love a wave guide that is as big as your head.
Put the footer and feet on the lower cabs, and followed that up with sealing the motorboard to the front. The seperator piece is attached on top, everything is sealed and ready for laquer tomorrow.
The backs were put in place and pre-drilled for the brass screws. They still need to be sanded before spraying.
I have to eliminate my audio rack because of space issues with the Cornscala's. But I can't fit it all under the TV, thus I am left with knocking out something that can hold my amp and dvd player. I was digging around cleaning out a wood rack and found a nice piece of curly cherry and another of curly walnut. I had been saving them for something special, and this was it.
Next thing was to figure out a design that would use only the two boards. In a fit of madness I pulled out the hand tools and carved a set of legs. I love the hand tools, there is nothing better than feeling that figured wood cut like butter.