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Assembly Tips

 

Installing Woofers, Tweeters, and Waveguides

 

Predrill all screw holes for woofers, tweeters, ports, etc. with a drill bit slightly smaller than your screws before installing them.  This will prevent the wood from splitting.  Most of the kit screws are #8 pan head and you can use a 7/64" or 1/8" bit.  Overnight Sensations and Concentric-8s are #6 and you can use a 3/32" bit for those.


IMPORTANT: When installing screws around your woofer or tweeter, use your free hand to protect the woofer or tweeter.  I put my hand next to the screw and cover the woofers edge.  That way if the screw driver slips, I scratch my hand....not stick the screw driver through the woofer.  Of course you can use a small piece of wood or something else to protect the component, but scratching your hand can give you something to brag about later.


If your kit comes with a piece of gasket tape, it should be applied to the back of the waveguide.  Peel the paper off the back to expose the sticky side and slowly work it around the perimeter on the back of the waveguide.  Some woofers might need gasket tape as well.


 

Crossover Assembly

 

Most people use a thin piece of MDF or peg board to assemble the crossover on if the kit does not come with a circuit board.  You should glue the parts to the board so they don't move around. 

CLICK HERE for a good assembly video by Matt Grant.


Inductors are the parts that look like small rolls of copper wire.  Notice that the two ends have been 'tinned' with solder.  Those are the parts of the inductor that you should be soldering to, so don't cut it off to get to the 'copper' portion.  None of the crossover parts have a positive or negative side so it does not matter which way they are facing when you assemble your crossover.  16-18 gauge wire is thick enough to use for your crossover or to go from your crossover board to the woofer or tweeter.


It doesn't matter where you put the crossover inside your speaker.  In reality, the crossover could be mounted on the back of the speaker if you wanted to.  Normally you wire red wires to positive and black wires to negative.  If your crossover schematic has a note next to the tweeter or compression driver saying 'Inverted Polarity', that means you actually need to connect the negative from the crossover to the positive and positive to the negative.  This is only done on the tweeter if noted, not the woofer.


 

Flat Pack Assembly

 

When assembling your flat pack I recommend using Titebond wood glue or another similar brand.  Some people use PL Adhesive but it can be messy and a bit thick to work with. You should put a bead of wood glue anywhere that two pieces of wood touch.  You should always dry fit the pieces in place first to check the fit and mark the area where the adhesive needs to go so that you don't forget.


Clamps should be used to hold the pieces in place for at least 30 minutes before removing them.  You don't need to over tighten the clamps because that can give you warped panels or squeeze out a lot of the glue.  The goal is to clamp the panel in place tight enough so that it doesn't slide around.  Some people use brad nailers to speed up the build.  This is okay but I still recommend lightly clamping the pieces together before shooting in the brad nail.


 

Stuffing the Inside of Your Speaker or Subwoofer

 

If your speaker or subwoofer uses a sealed enclosure most designers would recommend that you lightly fill the inside with polyfill (pillow stuffing) for speakers and heavy fill for subwoofers.  If you do not have polyfill, you should line the inside walls with at least 1.5" light weight foam or insulation.  Many people are now using recycled denim insulation that you can buy at Home depot or Lowes.  It is okay to cover up your crossover network.  If you use foam it should be 'open cell' foam that is fairly soft and light weight.  The foam or polyfill can simply be glued to the internal walls of your speaker paying extra attention to make sure you put some directly behind the woofer.

 

If your speaker uses a ported enclosure you should line the walls with 1.5" light weight foam, 2-3" thick denim insulation, or 2-3" thick poly batting.  If you do not have these materials, then you can glue or staple polyfill to the inside walls of the cabinet and then lightly fill the upper portion of the cabinet and then put some extra directly behind the woofer.  It's important not to block air flow to the ports.  I will be getting photos posted soon that show the different and acceptable methods for damping your speaker boxes.