Intro: Clay Mono Speaker and LED Light
What Inspired me?
This was my college project and I loved the design so much I felt like I needed to show you guys! This is a cast concrete speaker mounted on a Clay hand I made. This a great product used for house parties, a small get together, camping, and just enjoying music in your room.
You Will Need;
- Acrylic (any colour, I used black, make sure its above 2mm in thickness.)
- Ready mix concrete
- Modroc (mud rock in bandage form)
- Air drying clay
- Aluminium wire (2.5mm)
- Sand paper
- Laser cutter.
- Band saw ( any type of saw that can cut through Styrofoam).
- Vacuum former (I used this to make the mould, but you can either make one by hand or fashion one from house hold materials).
- Soldering iron (plus solder and maybe a PCB clamp, depending on how good your soldering is).
Step 1: Making the Hand
Step one - The Hand
This step is probably the most important as it makes up the main body of the speaker. to complete this step, you will need sand, wire, a stand of some sort, string, a rubber glove, modroc, and patience!!!!!!
First, use the wire to make a skeleton of the hand. This would look like 5 fingers, connected at the bottom via string or tape. When this is completed, insert the skeleton into the rubber glove. After, pour in the fine sand. This will allow you to apply modroc onto the surface without squishing it. Tie the rubber glove at the bottom to prevent any sand from leaking out. Use glue, string, tape or a glue gun to attach the glove filled with sand onto your base (I used an old solder wheel). Cut the modroc bandages into equal lengths then submerge in water, when the bandage goes soggy, apply it to the surface. Continue until the hand is covered, build up the layers until its about 4-5 mm thick. When you complete this, wait for the surface to harden.
Step 2: Making the Base
Step two - The Base
This step is one of the easiest. Cut three equally sized Styrofoam blocks and use PVA to secure them on top of each other. When this is done, use a coping saw, a rasp, a file and sand paper to shape the base. Make it as tall, wide and as weird as you want. Make sure it is well balanced and it needs a 60mm hole running through the centre. This is where your circuit will go. Use the basic tools such as files, rasps and coping saws to get the shape you want. I wanted a melted effect so I used the file and rasp to remove any unwanted material. I used the hand drill to drill a hole in the centre then used the rasp to make it much bigger.
Step 3: Adding the Clay
Step Three - The Clay
Use hot glue to attach the hand to its base. Before adding the clay, I added dimples into the surface of the base to make the clay stick better.
Use air dry clay to seal the gap between the hand and the base, this will also make the hand as a finished product a lot better. Remember to keep your hands and fingers wet at all times. this will make it much easier to work with. Continue to roll out very thin 30mm by 30mm pieces and applying it to the surface, make sure you keep your hands wet to allow the clay to seal properly. Continue until you have filed the surface of the product then wait until it hardens.
Step 4: The Speaker Holder
Step Four - The Speaker Holder
Cut two pine blocks to each other via PVA. Use a hole saw to drill a 64mm hole in the centre of the block. When this is done, use a tenon saw to take away any material around the outside to get a circular, curved edge. Like the picture above. Use a belt sander, file or sand paper to get a smooth surface. Make sure you taper the block as it makes it easier to get out of the mould after.
Insert the piece into a vacuum former. If you are not able to complete this step by your self, get someone else to do it, eg friend, parent or teacher. Wait until the plastic is bouncy then pull up the mould, turn on the vacuum and wait a few seconds. Use a Stanley knife to get the wood out then tape the holes up.
Make some loops using wire and insert into mould, spacing them out. This will act like support to prevent your concrete from breaking. Add water to your concrete mix, and then out into the mould. Tap the mould on the table a few times to prevent air bubbles. This also removes moisture from the mix, making the concrete set harder. Take the concrete out of the mould when set.
Step 5: The Speaker Covers
Step Five - The Speaker Covers
Using a laser cutter or basic hand tools, design a cover for you speaker. Also, make a loop with the same diameter as the cover, and make the second hole bigger then the speakers diameter. This is what will hold the speaker in place. On top of this, design and cut a bottom piece. This needs a 20mm hole, and three 3mm holes.
Once cut, use araldite to attach the pieces together. DO NOT GLUE THE TWO TOP PIECES TO THE CONCRETE YET, THATS THE NEXT STEP!
Step 6: The Circuit
Step Six - The Circuit
I ordered the mono speaker from Kitronic and I only had to solder on the AUX, speaker and battery pack. Use hand drill (5mm) and drill a how where you want your speaker. For example the middle of the hand. Glue the speaker into the loop and wait until it sets. Feed the wires threw from inside of the hand to the speaker and solder these on. This is the step where you glue the top pieces of acrylic to the concrete. Using the 2.5mm wire. Make three 50mm strips, bending one end about 60 degrees. Using the hand drill, drill three 3mm holes where the wires will sit. Insert the wires from inside of the cast concrete into the holes you drilled. Use araldite to secure them in place. Wait until its dry then test your speaker.
Step 7: The LEDs
This is the circuit I designed to fit in with my Whitty Bills light box. It consist of three ultra bright LEDs but you can add more without decreasing the brightness as ive designed it as a parallel circuit.
On top of using it for my Whitty bills desk lamp, I used the same type of circuit for this speaker lamp combo.
You will need;
- Three LEDs (any colour or size, I designed it for three LEDs but if you work it out, im sure you will find the correct resistor)
- 330R resistor
- 9V battery strap
- 9V battery
- Multi strand wire
- Strip board (30mm by 30mm ay least 6 holes in both directions)
- Soldering iron and solder
- PCB holder
The first step is using a strip board guillotine to cut a piece with 6 holes in both directions. This will be about 30mm by 30mm.
To do this step, use wire strippers to strip about 4mm of rubber cording off the wire at both ends. Make each LED wire about 60mm in length. Make sure you strip both black and red wires as this will make it much easier.
spin the red stripped wire around the longest leg of the LED and make sure it is very tight. You are able to use shrink wire to neaten the soldering up and to stop short cuts. Repeat this for both legs on all three of the LEDs. it would help if you insert the LED into PCB holder to make soldering quicker and easier.
Insert the resistor into the board and solder. Look at the picture to see where it will have to go.
The switch is the easiest piece to solder. This is a slide switch and isn't polarised. This means it doesn't need to placed a certain way for it to work. Use the wires you stripped in the second step and thread one of them through the centre pin (leg) then thread the second through one of the others. Insert the switch into the PCB holder and solder the wire on.
Insert the battery clip and the other components into the board following the drawing I made. Make sure each component is facing the right way, the positive leg of the battery strap needs to be connected to the positive leg on the LED.
Step 8: Finished!
Step 7 - Finished!
You are now finished. You can add spray paint, lights and other decoration to the surface. I added blue LED lights I made in a previous task and also I made an MDF box to house my speaker. I really hoped you enjoyed reading this one. I really loved making this speaker. please feel free to follow me and favourite this instructable for more!