My First DIY - Tuba HT (Build Thread - Completed) *Updated 11/26 with new pics!* - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 26 Old 11-09-2012, 07:26 PM - Thread Starter
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After a month or so of browsing forums and agonizing, I finally took the plunge into DIY. I was *this* close to putting in an offer on the BIC Acoustec PL-200, but after reading so many rave reviews about the THT, I couldn't resist. So without further ado, please join me on my journey!

Build List:

3X 5x5 1/2" Baltic Birch ($160 w/ tax eek.gif)
Dayton DVC 385-88 ($140)
Bash 300W Plate Amp ($112)
1/4"-20 Speaker Mounting Kit (~$5)
Speaker Gasketing tape 1/8" X 1/2" - 50ft Roll (~$5)
Gold Recessed 5-Way Banana Speaker Terminal (~$5)
4X Tubes PL Premium ($18)
THT and Panel Jig Plans ($18)
Minwax Wood Conditioner - 1qt ($8)
Minwax Stain (Jacobean) - 1qt ($8)
Minwax Satin Polyurethane - 1 qt ($8)

Tools and equipment that were purchased for this build:

5X 8ft 2x4 Studs (for saw table)
1/2" 4x8 Sanded Ply (for braces/jigs/etc)
Rip-guide/Circle Jig combo tool
18ga Brad Nailer and 1000ct 1.25" brads
2X 48" Aluminum Bar Clamps
2X 36" Steel Bar Clamps
2X 12" Steel Bar Clamps
4X Large Spring Clamps
New plywood blade for my circular saw (An 18V Ryobi)
Countersink/Bit Combo (for access panel screws)
Cheap Plastic Sawhorses
2X 12"x24" Carpenter's Square
Cheap Caulk Gun
Bosch 1617 Router Kit
Jasper Circle Jig
15 Bit 1/2 Shank Kit
Random Orbit Sander

Tools that I already owned and have used:

Miter Saw
Tape Measure
Drill/Driver
4ft Level
Circular Saw
Jigsaw
Pliers
.75" and 1.25" Wood Screws
Lots of paper towels and nitrile gloves (You do NOT mess around with PL Premium, unless you like looking like a kindergartner after a finger-painting party)


I will be uploading the build pictures (lots of them) to an imgur album. I will inline the interesting ones here in the thread!

Let the games begin:


Constructing the saw table, you gotta start with a solid base!



In order to avoid the shame of BFM scolding me with a scathing 'It's in the plans...', I've consulted these pages a dozen times already.


Gallery link here: http://imgur.com/a/wLiKK

More coming soon!
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post #2 of 26 Old 11-10-2012, 07:06 AM
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Subbed, I love watching these go together - and even more, the "OMG I just fired it up and about crapped myself" comment at the end. biggrin.gif
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post #3 of 26 Old 11-10-2012, 11:56 AM
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Ha ha, me too Brad. Good luck on the build!

Current HT: HTPC-->Epson 5010 projector-->135" screen, BFM TLAHs x7 & THT
Build log: DIY rotary sub for contemporary HT in 100 year old house?
Andreas' Slow Rotary Sub build
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post #4 of 26 Old 11-11-2012, 08:30 PM - Thread Starter
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First update, I'm pretty satisfied with the progress I made this weekend. I am being extremely methodical and slow, I want this to be as close to perfect as possible when I'm done. With that being said, on to the pictures!


Access panel cut-out made with circular saw and finished with jigsaw

Kerf width was pretty close, will just need a bit of sanding

Panel 1 cut and ready to install!

Clamped and square

Decent squeeze-out, I went a little heavy on this first bead. You can also see the downside of using a brad nailer... this will be covered with a layer of PL.

Panels 1 and 2 set and drying


Till next weekend!
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post #5 of 26 Old 11-12-2012, 11:42 AM
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Nice work. Sub'ed. cool.gif
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post #6 of 26 Old 11-15-2012, 04:36 PM
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Looking good baccula. Enjoy the build. :-)

-Max
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post #7 of 26 Old 11-15-2012, 06:11 PM
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I'm going to be building a Titan 48 with a 15" Eminence Kappalite for a friend whose already got the plans and is placing the order with PE tomorrow. He'll be using his for live bands and parties in his back yard. I'll be building a Tuba HT after I'm done with his build. Buying the plans from Bill tomorrow. I can't freakin' wait! Subscribed to this so I can avoid your mistakes! biggrin.gif
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post #8 of 26 Old 11-16-2012, 10:20 AM - Thread Starter
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Got back in to the office today and had a few packages waiting for me : D


The beast. Others have said it already, but MAN this is a nice driver for the money! Really solid build/feel and nice binding posts to boot. Looking forward to breaking it in.

I didn't originally plan on using a router, and even bought a cheap circle jig for my jigsaw. But since I'm planning on doing a roundover and would have to borrow someone's router anyway I thought "Eh why not?". So in this picture is my brand new Bosch 1617EVSPK (BTW this is on sale at Amazon for $190 plus $25 off promo, GREAT price), a Jasper 200 Circle Jig, 15 piece 1/2" Shank router bit kit, the Yung 200W plate amp and other bits and bobbles for the enclosure. Work resumes tonight!
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post #9 of 26 Old 11-16-2012, 10:30 AM
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Might want to rethink the yung. http://www.avsforum.com/t/1438806/looking-for-some-advice-on-building-a-ht-subwoofer/30#post_22592611

Nice router though. That's a great price.
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post #10 of 26 Old 11-16-2012, 01:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by baccula View Post


Toys! biggrin.gif

Nice build so far, looking forward to your updates.

Chris

"It hurts to admit when you make mistakes - but when they are big enough, the pain only lasts a second."
--Despair, Inc. "Regret"

My AviaTrix TM Build
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post #11 of 26 Old 11-16-2012, 08:57 PM - Thread Starter
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Man! How did I miss that? Another link from that thread states that it is -3db at 21hz, which would make it technically a 21hz HPF, would that be acceptable? I'm well within the 45-day exchange window, so if I need to trade up to something better, please let me know!
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post #12 of 26 Old 11-18-2012, 08:33 PM - Thread Starter
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After numerous audibles called by the SO, I was finally able to get at it tonight. Ran into an unpleasant surprise when I tried to bolt the driver to the baffle and found the bolts from the PE kit were ~ 1/2" too short. Sigh... another trip to Home Depot. Their bolt selection is pitiful, nothing allen-head. So I just got eight 1/4-20 X 2" hex head. They'll do the job...


Breaking the driver in. 20Hz at 10V for 12 Hours = Success?

Baffle completed. SO GLAD I BOUGHT THE ROUTER! Beautiful cutouts that matched perfectly.

Cut out Panel 4 and PL/Screws to attach to baffle.





Installing T-Nuts... Yes I used 2-part epoxy to avoid future spin-outs.

Couldn't find a washer that fit, so I used a dull saw blade. Hey, gotta use what you got right?

Pretty much repeating the same steps again and again for the next part of the build. Cut panel to fit, install. Cut braces, install. Clamp it all up and wait...




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post #13 of 26 Old 11-22-2012, 11:46 AM - Thread Starter
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So after several hours of work every night, I just got done tacking on the top! So now I'm halfway there right? ; ) More pictures!











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post #14 of 26 Old 11-22-2012, 12:59 PM
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Looking good. Home Depot may have Allen head bolts in the metal drawers.

I am working on speaker projects during the holiday break, too, and I am thankful for the opportunity. smile.gif

-Max
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post #15 of 26 Old 11-22-2012, 01:19 PM
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I can't remember if I got my allen head bolts from Home Depot or Lowe's. I'm pretty sure I had to check both but in the end I think HD had them. I remember having to buy them in bags though as they didn't have singles in the size I needed. You definitely want to hold out for them though. They are the easiest way to bolt the speaker in when you can't reach all of the bolts very well. I cut about an inch off an allen wrench and put it in a ratchet with an extension and it worked beautifully. Not sure if you already did it or not but be sure to run a tap through the hurricane nuts first if you didn't already. It will save you a headache.


Great looking build. Keep the pics coming. smile.gif
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post #16 of 26 Old 11-22-2012, 05:12 PM - Thread Starter
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Yeah I left out a few details...

1) Underestimated the amount of PL needed. Ended up using about 3.5 tubes

2) Lowe's has a much better selection of hardware. Was able to pick up 2" 1/4-20 Allen Heads for about 80c each. I also noticed they had Arauco in stock, 1/2" and 3/4".

3) I got nervous about the performance of the Yung amp, specifically the HPF. I returned it to PE, and my 300W Bash arrives tomorrow!

4) If anyone is curious, the finish you see on the access panel is a 15-minute set of Minwax Jacobean. My wife is thrilled with how it looks, too bad it's going to get shoved into a cubby! I'm planning on protecting the finish with two coats of satin poly.

I was so thrilled to put on the top side this afternoon, as I said this is my first DIY, and it's been a while since I've felt such a sense of accomplishment. Can't wait till it makes noise!! I already know which track I'm going to 'audition' it with. biggrin.gif
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post #17 of 26 Old 11-22-2012, 07:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by baccula View Post

YCan't wait till it makes noise!! I already know which track I'm going to 'audition' it with. biggrin.gif

So, are you going to share?

Excellent progress, looking good.

Chris

"It hurts to admit when you make mistakes - but when they are big enough, the pain only lasts a second."
--Despair, Inc. "Regret"

My AviaTrix TM Build
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post #18 of 26 Old 11-22-2012, 09:36 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
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So, are you going to share?
Excellent progress, looking good.

So I know people have their lists of songs with maximum LFE, etc etc... but I'm not going that route. My favorite movie is Inception. The soundtrack is a huge part of that. So the first song that I will play at reference volume with the THT installed is "Time". http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B003U9OE64/ref=dm_mu_dp_trk12 After that, I'll probably watch the movie. Then, in no particular order:

War of the Worlds
Terminator Salvation
Jurassic Park
Tron: Legacy

Then I'll get out the drywall compound and start patching cracks! biggrin.gif
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post #19 of 26 Old 11-26-2012, 06:51 AM - Thread Starter
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IT LIIIIIIIIVES!!! I wrapped the project up yesterday, and moved it into the HT last night. I had hooked it up in the garage and played some test tones through it to check for rattles/leaks/etc. It was loud, windows were shaking, chest was vibrating. But I was honestly a little underwhelmed. This scared me, I'm not a bass junkie by any means, I didn't even have a sub in my HT prior to this. Well, I got it moved into position, and put on the opening scene from Inception...

eek.gifeek.gifeek.gif

I've never experienced bass like this outside of a concert. It bordered on overwhelming, and the DVM never hit 25V! This thing is everything they say and more. Unbelievable bang for the buck. Bill's plans were laid out perfectly, easy to follow, and produced an incredible product. I am completely satisfied with how it turned out. Folks, the only woodworking I've done before this was building a birdhouse when I was a kid. If you take your time, measure everything three times, and FOLLOW THE PLANS, you can't fail. Here's a few more pics. I apologize, I didn't get too many during the final build phase, as my hands were covered in stain/poly/epoxy for most of the time.







Here you can see the only customization I did. Put together a speaker cloth cover for the front panel. I didn't really like the look of the open horn, so I made this instead. 11/16" X 11/2" primed MDF, chopped up in the miter saw and brad-nailed/glued together. Painted the frame and face of the THT flat black, and stapled on the speaker cloth. I purchased some cover clips from PE, but they required pretty big holes to be drilled into the face/frame to install. I ended up buying some 1/2" disc magnets from Home Depot for a couple bucks. Drilled out recesses for them and epoxied them in. Five magnet sets do an adequate job of keeping the cover attached, and there are no rattles or weird noises. I'm happy with how it turned out, even though you can hardly see it. smile.gif


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post #20 of 26 Old 11-26-2012, 07:11 AM
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Man that looks awesome! Great job!
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post #21 of 26 Old 11-29-2012, 06:37 PM
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Very nice build and thanks for the play-by-play. What did you do with the plate amp: how did you secure it?
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post #22 of 26 Old 11-29-2012, 06:59 PM
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Very nice job. The grill cover you made makes it look like a normal sub. Just. Really. Really big!

The efficiency of these things is pretty insane.

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post #23 of 26 Old 11-30-2012, 06:43 AM - Thread Starter
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Very nice build and thanks for the play-by-play. What did you do with the plate amp: how did you secure it?

Thank you! Per the recommendation of Bill and others here, I elected to not mount the plate amp on the sub itself. I currently have it tucked back in my entertainment center, and run speaker wire back to the sub. No hum!
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post #24 of 26 Old 11-30-2012, 08:18 AM
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Bravo! Great looking job and thanks for the photos along the build journey.
How are the lamp and vase above the subwoofer holding up? The reason I ask is I am about to build a THT LP and put it behind my components and 80" TV. Does it shake the crap out of everything close by? I don't want to mess up my electronics or watch a jiggling TV picture. You sure can hide yourst in your room so it doesn't become the main feature of the room.

My Vintage style Home Theatre Build thread:
http://www.avsforum.com/t/1400234/vintage-look-diy-theatre-build
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post #25 of 26 Old 11-30-2012, 11:10 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by dcg58 View Post

Bravo! Great looking job and thanks for the photos along the build journey.
How are the lamp and vase above the subwoofer holding up? The reason I ask is I am about to build a THT LP and put it behind my components and 80" TV. Does it shake the crap out of everything close by? I don't want to mess up my electronics or watch a jiggling TV picture. You sure can hide yourst in your room so it doesn't become the main feature of the room.

Since those pics were taken, I've changed a few things. I removed that red shelf the lamp and vase were sitting on. I tried putting them directly on the sub. The vase does fine, but the lamp rattled too much. When they were sitting on the shelf, they were both fine at normal listening levels. YMMV, some people turn their's up so high it shakes things off the shelf in other rooms!
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post #26 of 26 Old 11-30-2012, 11:14 AM
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Quote:
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some people turn their's up so high it shakes things off the shelf in other rooms!

they most certainly do wink.gif

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