Introduction: Speaker Set Made From Reclaimed Car Speakers

Picture of Speaker Set Made From Reclaimed Car Speakers

This is my first instructable for a project I did two summers ago, before heading to University for the first time. I found these old speakers during a garage clear out and decided that they deserved better than being left to decay. I was after a speaker for use during first year....gatherings... and figured I could make something cool and unique using these.

Please ignore the un-decorated room in the second picture, I'm redesigning the kitchen at the moment. It'll look good when it's finished!

Step 1: Initial Tests

Picture of Initial Tests

I began by purchasing the amplifier and cables I needed to test the speakers. I picked up a Lepai 2020+ 2 channel amplifier and some copper speaker cable. Connecting them together was straight forward enough, I combined one of the Alpine and Kenwood speakers into pairs to create a left and right channel, hoping that the symmetry would lead to a balanced sound. The speakers were connected in series into each of the Lepai's channels. I then used an audio source to test the amplifier and sound quality.

Here is the newer model of the amplifier I used, I recommend it highly: https://www.amazon.co.uk/LEPY-2024A-Plus-Amplifier...

Step 2: Design

Picture of Design

I was after a retro boombox design, so used a CAD package to model a simple speaker box. A combination of front firing and upward firing speakers would be enough to evenly fill a room with sound. After double checking the layout, I moved this design in to a 2D design package that could be easily manufactured on a laser cutter. I was after something relatively light weight, so settled on 9mm MDF. I didn't want to use screws or fixings, so left in a border that would allow me to create lap joints.

Step 3: Make

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For fabrication, I chose 9mm MDF for it's price, durability and machinability. I used a laser cutter to quickly and accurately create the panels, then used a table saw to create grooves on every panel apart from the sides. From there I used PVA glue to bond the panels together and left to dry.

One of the oval cut outs was fixed to the inside of the base panel for the amplifier to be secured to.

I then used mahogany stain to transform the MDF, applying two coats to get a full finish. I used a heavier brush to imitate grain which worked quite well.

Handles were sourced from a local shop, and began life destined for kitchen doors. Placing them on either side provided a robust way of transporting the unit and gave a location to wind the cables around when not in use. I've also attached a luggage strap to both handles providing a convenient way of moving the unit whilst keeping my hands free.

Step 4: Finishing Touches & Closing Thoughts

Picture of Finishing Touches & Closing Thoughts

Two holes were drilled in the back (for the power cable and auxiliary cable). For two years I used my laptop/mobile phone to provide a signal, but recently upgraded to a chromecast audio which transformed the unit.

This design can be modified to accommodate any speaker set, and provides more than enough power to fill a room.

It's a little low on bass, but provides a wall of sound that can reach high volumes whilst retaining clarity. I therefore used an external DAC with my laptop to allow me to connect a friends bass heavy PC speakers (Logitech I believe) to provide a proper soundscape.

If I were to do this again, I would create a cut out in the back plate for better resonance and bass response.

Thank you for reading, if you have any questions please ask!!

Comments

boesh (author)2016-09-14

Nice, could you elaborate on the chromecast upgrade? I am not sure i know what that is.

Manesh_P (author)boesh2016-09-17

The amp has a phono input, so I brought a phono (male) to a standard 3.5mm jack and connected in a chromecast audio, meaning I can stream music to it without using bluetooth

boesh (author)Manesh_P2016-10-20

Thnx, I reached the stage that i have all required materials so I should start building :-)
Before starting to build, is there some guidance in how to construct the housing to improve the bass?

JUDE SELVAN (author)2016-09-19

bro i had an idea for a long time i have collected nearly a 100 pc speakers that 50 of it distrtion pc speakers and another 50 bass speakers or called as subwoofers .i wanted to make it into big subwoofer with all the speakers cllected and fix it in a computer casing . im blurred i donot know how to fix it pls help. i wanted to cut out cost to buy a brand new bass speaker so that it can be more loud and the thuming of base could fill a room or hall.

blstboxbassspeaker. pls help i donot know what are the items needed and how to do pls teach me

Manesh_P (author)JUDE SELVAN2016-09-19

50 tweeters and 50 subwoofers? Jesus, right from what I currently know you'll need to check the impedance of each unit (should be written in Ohms on each unit). You'll need a 2.1 channel amp, which means you'll have a left, right and bass channel. You'll need to match the output impedance of your amplifier (which will be reported) to your speakers. If each speaker is 4 Ohms and the amplifier is 8 ohms wire two speakers in series into the channel, with multiple sets of this wired in parallel into each channel. Do the same with the subwoofers. I feel like I've over simplified this, as each speaker will draw power from the amp. To be honest so many speakers may not be such a great idea, maybe pick the ten best of each and wire appropriately. You'll want short sections of oxygen free copper between each speaker to keep resistance and therefore random noise low. If you provide more information I could possibly provide more help. Glad you enjoyed the instructable.

Diwiak (author)2016-09-15

Looks nice, but no bassreflex opening for such huge speakers??! Sound will be much better with it, and without it glued connections could ruin after time imo.

Manesh_P (author)Diwiak2016-09-17

I've noticed that too, currently deciding where these opening would be best placed. Will update as and when I do!

DIY Hacks and How Tos (author)2016-09-11

Nice looking speaker housing.

Thanks!

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