Introduction: My Homemade Bluetooth Speaker
It's been a while since my last input to the great web site so I figured it's about time for one.
This project was a long time in the making because all the parts didn't all come at once.
I made the instuctable after the project was complete but I did mange to take some pictures of the assembly process along the way.
It was also torn apart to make changes and reassembled a couple of times as well so that was when most of the shots were taken.
So this is how I built my homemade bluetooth speaker from mostly recycled parts.
I don't have much knowledge of how speakers function or how acoustics work but this is my attempt at making one.
Step 1: Back Ground and Getting the Parts.
I was at a rummage sale a couple of years ago and came across the this cabinet from old radio which they were gonna toss so I took it home. It sat in my basement for a while and in the mean time while watching U-tube vids I came across one which someone took and put in a bluetooth receiver in an old radio and then it stuck me "I can do that too". So the search was on.
These are the parts I needed to make this build. It took a long time to acquire all the parts. A couple of years to be exact.
The main cabinet and the big driver I picked up at two different times rummage sales real cheep.
The two little drivers I have had laying around for years and not sure where they came from. I figured this is a good a time to use them as any.
The big driver came out of an old stereo speaker. I just wanted to use this part so the rest of it (the mid range and tweeter) was put away for a later project. (BTW I only got one of the speakers. The other went to recycling. After I wished I got the other one as well)
The amp I ordered off of E-bay It has bluetooth already installed on it. To order one just do a search for 2.1 stereo amp on Amazon, E-bay or some other electronics selling site should get you there. Link to the one I used.
I had the miscellaneous stuff like knobs, plugs and the power supply in my junk drawers.
BTW The cabinet came with no parts inside so no old radio was injured or lost it's life in making of this Instructable.
Step 2: Tools Required
1 Screw drivers and some screws
2 Hammer and some small nails
3 Drill (as well as various sizes of bits) A drill press works best but hand drill will work as well.
4 Soldering iron (solder and flux)
5 Heavy duty Stapler. (Office or Paper stapler just won't cut it for this job.)
6 Saw (table, jig, hand, or circular saws all will work)
7 Nail gun (the hammer and nails will work as well)
8 Paint brush
Step 3: List of Parts
A wooden old radio.
An old stereo speaker.
A 2.1 amplifier with bluetooth. This is the link to the one I got.
A switch of some sort for the power on and off. I used a SPST out of the junk drawer.
A power supply of some kind. 12V DC would be my recommendation
(Optional an extra power plug.)
Grill Cloth. Here's the Link on E-bay Color is your choice.
Some screws and nails. (your choice on size)
Maybe some glue for the grill cloth or silicone chalk to seal up any holes.
A bit of black paint and brush.
Some length wires
Step 4: Mounting the Drivers and Grill Cloth
The drivers were to be mounted on the board that came with the stereo speaker.
I had to cut the board down some to make it fit in the cabinet. I also cut new holes for the two little drivers. After the holes were cut I touched up the front with some black paint so the fresh cut wood wouldn't show through the grill cloth.
I then glued and stapled on the grill cloth on the front of the board making sure there were no wrinkles in it. There are lots of videos on U-tube to show you how to do this.
I then placed the drivers in their assigned spots on the back. One of the little drivers would be for the right channel the other for left channel and the big driver is for the bass.
Step 5: The Amp and Speakers
I attacked some lengths of wires to each driver. Black for the negative side on each and different colours (red and orange) for the plus side. ( I am Dutch Canadian so that's how we spell colour here.)
The amp was mounted on a piece of plexiglass I cut out of a bigger piece to fit the space where it was going to go.
The drilling of the holes for control knobs was tricky because the plexiglass was thicker then the spot on the shaft where the nuts went on so I had to improvise. I first drilled the proper size holes and I then proceeded to enlarge the holes on one side part way down so I could screw the nuts down. I put black duct tape over the plexiglass to hide all the scratches and imperfections on the glass.
I cut a small hole in the tape so I could see the pilot light.
I should have measured a bit better so everything would look a little more even.
I also installed a power plug and a power switch on the plexiglass.
I hope you have some knowledge of soldering because I'm not gonna go into that here.
Step 6: The Fun Part, Putting It Altogether
In the previous steps I have already placed the speakers on the board as well as the grill cloth so now I put it all in the cabinet. It fit right in with a little space to spare on each side. I put little slats around the perimeter of the board to hold it in place as well as seal off the space. I used a nail gun for this step.
Next came the amp. I mounted it to the plexiglass along with the power switch.It slid right in the spot where the old radio face plate was.
I haven't filled in the holes where the old knobs came out because I haven't quit figured what I'm gonna do with them yet. My two options so far is either fill them in or make some fake knobs.
The wiring to the speakers is easy. Just look on the circuit board and it will tell you what wire goes where. Left right and woofer (or Bass) speaker.
I hope you have some knowledge of wiring because I'm not gonna go into that here either.
Hook up your power supply as well
The back was fabricobbled from the top and bottom of the stereo speaker and had foam stuck to the inside for acoustical value. (duct tape and hot glue and staples. Don't ask it was an after thought)
Step 7: Making It Work
Now the real fun begins.
After plugging in the power and turning it on wait for the power up tone.
Now take any bluetooth device (Phone Tablet Laptop) and do your search for the new device. when you find the new one hit connect.
Walla now you can play music or listen to what ever you want. BTW no can answer the phone with it.
Step 8: Conclusions
I would like to see a little more bass come out of it but it's ok.
The bass does not shake any dishes off the shelves or rattle any windows which suits me fine because my hearing is bad enough as it is.
The finished product sounds pretty good in my opinion but that's my only my opinion.
For some reason the stereo sound separation sounds pretty darn good.
I could have positioned the amp a little better. (like more centered on the plexiglass)
I did make a back for it out of the top and bottom of the old stereo speaker and glued some foam to it as well.
It can be powered from any DC supply from 9 to 24 volts but after 18V it gets a little sketchy. I blew a cap at 20V. Had to replace it. Now I can't go over 14V. Be careful when hooking up the power. Using a 20V drill battery with the power switch still turned on wasn't such a great idea..
Well that's it. I hope you enjoyed this little experience I had.
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