Introduction: Replace the Grill on an AKG C1000S Microphone
My church has a couple of AKG C1000S condenser microphones for occasional use. Recently, one of them took a nose-dive onto the floor, and the mesh grill got knocked off of the aluminum sleeve at the front of the mic. It was not immediately clear to me how to put it back into place, so I did a little Internet search to see how others have solved the problem.
I found that this is a fairly common problem with this mic.
I found a lot of people asking the same question.
I found a source for a replacement grill/sleeve assembly for roughly half the cost of a new mic.
What I did not find is a solution to the problem. Most responses indicated that it was not possible to put the grill back in place. Many had tried and failed.
So, I thought I'd give it a try and see if I could fail too.
Step 1: The Problem
Here's the broken mic. The body of the mic was on the mic stand, just as I left it. The grill was about 10 feet away on the floor.
Step 2: The Right Tool for the Job
The primary tool for this job is a hose clamp. I used it to temporarily squeeze the bottom end of the grill smaller so I could slip it into the aluminum collar. The ideal size is 11/16 to 1 1/2 inch.
Life will be easier if you also have something to use as a press. I used a bar clamp.
You may find that you'll require a small punch. I didn't have one at hand, so I abused a #1 Robertson screwdriver.
You will also need some epoxy cement. I used 5 minute epoxy.
Step 3: Disassembly
Remove the inner foam windsock.
Unscrew and remove the collar from the body of the microphone.
Step 4: The Big Squeeze
Slip the hose clamp over the grill.
There is a ring of dark, hard material around the bottom of the grill. I'm not sure what this but it will buckle and crack as you squeeze the bottom of the grill.
Position the edge of the clamp about 3/16 inch from the bottom of the grill. Any higher, and the grill will flare out at the bottom, which is counterproductive. Any lower and there is not enough of the grill exposed to catch the inside of the aluminum sleeve.
Tighten the hose clamp until you can feel firm resistance. Test fit to see if you can insert the grill into the sleeve. It will be a tight fit, and you will need to pry the grill into place. Insert the grill in at the spot nearest the screw on the clamp first, then work your way around.
If it won't go, tighten the clamp a bit more and try again. It may be possible to just tighten the clamp until the grill is compressed enough to slip in easily. I didn't try this for fear of permanently deforming the grill.
When you have the grill mostly inserted, move on to the next step.
Step 5: Another Squeeze
After the grill is mostly inserted, place the assembly into a press or clamp as shown. Apply gentle pressure on the clamp/press and try to push the last bit of the grill bottom into place. I was almost able to do this with my thumb nail, but in the end I had to give it a few gentle taps with a small punch.
When the entire bottom edge of the grill is inside the sleeve, loosen off the hose clamp, and tighten the clamp/press until the grill bottoms out in the aluminum sleeve. Now you can loosen off the clam/press. The grill is a pretty tight fit. At least, it was in my case. I wasn't too worried about it slipping out again.
Step 6: Make It Permanent
Mix up your epoxy according to its directions.
Set the reassembled assembly upright, and lay a small bead of epoxy around the top edge of the aluminum sleeve, allowing some to ooze down into the gaps at the lower edge of the grill.
Place the assembly upright where it will not get knocked over. Allow the epoxy to cure until it is not the least bit tacky. Then let it cure a little more. You don't want to get sticky epoxy on the inner foam windscreen.
Step 7: We Are All Assembled Here...
Slip the inner foam windscreen over the mic capsule.
Thread the repaired grill/sleeve assembly onto the body of the mic.
Set the mic aside to allow the epoxy to completely cure for whatever time period the epoxy instructions say.
Put the mic back into service.
Step 8: Done!
With the epoxy fully cured, this repair looks to me like it will be stronger than the mic was when new. I'm not sure what the function of the dark, hard material at the bottom of the grill, and inside the sleeve was. If it was supposed to act as an adhesive, it was not doing its job. There was no sign of any residue of this material on the aluminum sleeve, so it didn't stick to the aluminum all that well. In my experience, epoxy sticks to aluminum fairly well so I think this will be a lasting repair.
We'll see what happens next time the mic takes a nose dive.