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Impressive work! Reminds me of the hull of a ship. You've got a lot more woodworking patience than I do. I start my projects with the best intentions but sometimes the finished product doesn't reflect it.

Oh and let my know/send your contact info if you want some JBL gear. I saw your PM but can't reply until I accumulate a few more posts.

Nice work though! Maybe sometime I can see it in person.
 

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I "finished" my home theater a few months ago, which left me speakerless in the living room (1899's moved into theater), so I've decided to build a pair of Uluwatu's for music in the main living area. I have officially joined the "WAF" club, so I now must consider how all future speaker builds will affect her :) I've built dozens of square/rectangular cabinets, but I've decided to step my game up and attempt to build some curved towers. I am also going to try to veneer these cabinets. No experience with building curves or veneering, so I'm open to any advice/tips/tricks I can get. Special thanks to @dtsdig, @PassingInterest, and others for inspiration and posting their experiences with building curves and veneering.

I have stared the build, I'll post progress below. Here's my hi-tech paint sketch for the curved braces. I made the widest part of the cabinet a little wider than what was recommended by Curt, but overall I will lose some internal volume, with that curvature near the rear baffle.



I guess I just caught on to the waf part, congrats man! A gal that will accept the 1899's among other things is a keeper :)
 

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Discussion Starter #26
Impressive work! Reminds me of the hull of a ship. You've got a lot more woodworking patience than I do. I start my projects with the best intentions but sometimes the finished product doesn't reflect it.

Oh and let my know/send your contact info if you want some JBL gear. I saw your PM but can't reply until I accumulate a few more posts.

Nice work though! Maybe sometime I can see it in person.
Thanks! I will pm you my email address.

I guess I just caught on to the waf part, congrats man! A gal that will accept the 1899's among other things is a keeper :)
Haha thanks man. She is a keeper for sure. She even likes to roll duratex for me!
 

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Discussion Starter #27
Took a break for the holidays, but back at it. Got the other speaker caught up.





Started smoothing them over too, almost ready for veneer.



In the meantime, I've been working on my formula for the finish. I'm on my 5th test piece lol. I think I'm getting close though. Can't wait to start spraying.

 

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Discussion Starter #29
Got the veneering done last weekend. Learned quite a bit. Some helpful tips, for anyone interested: If it's your first time, I'd recommend using paper back veneer (not raw wood), unless you have a vacuum press. I imagine it's alot more forgiving. Flatter, easier to glue down, less likely to tear and split. Dtsdig explained his process of gluing down his paper backed veneer with contact cement and it sounded much easier than what I went through. As mentioned earlier in the thread, my ash veneer was far from flat. I was able to apply enough even pressure on all the flat (non curved) sides, to get the veneer glued down flat. But on the curved sides, my strap jig didn't apply anywhere near the amount of pressure I needed to get the veneer pressed flat. And I cranked the straps almost to the point of breaking them. What I ended up with was "ripples" on the curved sides. Luckily, I applied enough glue to actually fill out those ripples and adhere all the veneer without any bubbles. And even more luckily, the ripples were shallow enough to where I was actually able to sand them out. I came pretty close in some spots though...I started to see the veneer glue seep through the grain where I sanded the most. And I'll only get away with that because I'm dying the cabinets dark enough to cover up any glue bleed through.

As far as cold press veneer glue, I tried Better Bond and Titlebond. I ended up liking Better Bond more. It's thicker and easier to work with. When I rolled the titlebond, it ran and thinned out too easily. That resulted in some spots drying before I could get the veneer pressed down. The Better Bond sat up better and stayed thick.

My other big issue was the veneer splitting at edges. I didn't have any big tear out spots, but I did fill small cracks and chipped corners with bondo wood filler. On my tests, the cured bondo didn't take dye as well as the ash veneer did, so I actually ended up putting a couple drops of dye into the bondo while mixing it. It still cured hard with the dye in it, and now those spots will end up a little darker, so I think it'll blend in with the grain once the finish is complete.

Overall, I'm pretty happy how the veneer job came out. All the mistakes were correctable. I think if I veneer in the future, I'll do it with a vacuum press setup. A vacuum press would also help get curved layers built.

I also got the crossovers all soldered up with wiring and connectors this week. I'm planning to spray dye/shellac/top coat this weekend and maybe even have the speakers finished early next week! I'll post my final process for the finish soon too.



Once the veneer was glued flat and sanded down, the curl really started to pop.










 

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Really really nice build, this is going to my shortlist of upcoming project, gotta do something, right :D


A couple of questions though:


1: Are you going to put more stuffing in it?
2: How is the transmission line working when the port is on the baffle?
3: Would you mind sharing your drawings here?


Can't wait to see them finished, and also get some listening impressions :)
 

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Overall, I'm pretty happy how the veneer job came out. All the mistakes were correctable. I think if I veneer in the future, I'll do it with a vacuum press setup. A vacuum press would also help get curved layers built.
Looks like lots of work, for sure! I spent lots of hours researching DIY vacuum press setups when I was doing my build. It would definitely have simplified things. Looking good!
 

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Discussion Starter #32
Really really nice build, this is going to my shortlist of upcoming project, gotta do something, right :D


A couple of questions though:


1: Are you going to put more stuffing in it?
2: How is the transmission line working when the port is on the baffle?
3: Would you mind sharing your drawings here?


Can't wait to see them finished, and also get some listening impressions :)
Thanks! For questions 1 and 2, I just followed the recommendations per Curt on speakerdesignworks; "This is a mass loaded transmission line with the port loaded in the center of the line. This provides the maximum port output at this location. The line is fully stuffed except near the port mouth. I recommend you start with 36 oz. of acousta-stuf, polyfill, or similar and add or subtract to taste."

Question 3, the only thing I drew up was the curved braces, shown in post 1. Everything else I pulled from Curt's documentation, and modified on the fly to fit the curve.

Looks like lots of work, for sure! I spent lots of hours researching DIY vacuum press setups when I was doing my build. It would definitely have simplified things. Looking good!
Thank you! My dad still does woodworking here and there...maybe I'll convince him to go in on a vacuum press with me lol.
 

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Discussion Starter #33
Final finish regimen:

Sand veneer down: 120 -> 220 -> 400
Raise grain: Spray with water, let dry, sand with 400
Spray 3 coats dye: Reddish Brown Transtint mixed in water (50% strength recommended on bottle)
Rub cabinets with Boiled Linseed Oil, wipe off after 20 min, let dry 24 hours
2 coats of #1 wax-free shellac
Lightly sand with 400
2 more coats of #1 wax-free shellac
2 coats of top-coat (General Finish High Performance water-based Polyurethane - Satin)
Lightly sand with 400
2 more coats of top-coat
Lightly sand with 800
2 final coats of top-coat

I probably went a little overboard with the process, but I really enjoyed using the spray gun. That GF top coat in particular was REALLY nice to spray. The harbor freight purple gun worked really well for being so cheap. Some pics from the process:







 

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Terrible. Absolutely hideous. You should be ashamed of yourself and your total lack of vision and anything representing speaker building skill.


I will be flying into Ft Worth later this week to relieve you of the source of your shame.


:D
Obviously kidding, those are beautiful and you should be proud of them!
 

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Discussion Starter #36
Terrible. Absolutely hideous. You should be ashamed of yourself and your total lack of vision and anything representing speaker building skill.


I will be flying into Ft Worth later this week to relieve you of the source of your shame.


:D
Obviously kidding, those are beautiful and you should be proud of them!
Lol, thank you!
 

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Great job on the build. I'd love to hear your review of them after they break in. These speakers are on my short list of speakers I want to build.
 
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