Intro: Speaker Stands (With Thanks to TNT Audio)
I have had a pair of Tannoy 605 speakers that I bought second hand about 15 years ago but still work well. They were mounted on their sides at ceiling height which is why they are covered in white sticky back plastic. Good for blending in & saving floor space – atrocious for sounding good.
Recently we took a step down the slippery slope of vinyl and to cut a very long story short needed to site the speakers correctly but separate from the turntable for optimum sound quality. Speaker stands needed.
Having done considerable research online I found the incredibly helpful www.tnt-audio.com site, where lurks a wealth of information to help the cash-strapped audiophile to bring music to their ears. There I found the since departed Scott Faller's instructions for the TNT Stubby, and decided to use this approach to give my Tannoys the stability they needed. I should also add that I also made the TNT "Full Frequency Range Cable", but since I simply followed their design to the letter, with excellent results, I saw no need to share that here. Go see for yourselves.
I'm always dismayed when I find an Instructable for something I want to recreate and the first step is "Go to your immense and professionally equipped workshop." Or "Switch on your CAD machine & 3D printer.". Fellow amateurs will be pleased to know that I used the simplest of tools in either my dining room or the space outside our front door.
Step 1: Tools
- Saw (I have two but one will do)
- (Adjustable) Spanner/s or a socket set
- Sanding block (but a bit of timber will do)
- Electric sander (but the sanding block above will do)
- Sealant gun
- Electric Drill
- Drill bit/s (the diameter of your thread rod & washers below)
- Straight edge (piece of timber shown or a ruler)
- A means of drilling straight (I use the corner of a little plastic box but you might have a special tool or just be good at drilling)
- A piece of scrap timber (which you will make a hole in later)
- A prodder (I used a piece of plastic pipe, longer than the lengths of soil pipe you eventually use.)
Step 2: Materials
(Quantities will depend on your speakers and the height required to place them at ear level whilst listening to them. You’ll need to read the whole instructions & work this out for yourself.)
- Timber that that fits your chosen look.
- PVC soil pipe (preferably unused…)
- Sand (shown in a previous picture)
- Stainless steel thread rod
- Stainless steel nuts & washers (to fit your thread rod)
- Blu Tack
- Speaker spikes (try eBay)
Step 3: Cut a Template
As you'll see from my later photos these Tannoys have a distinctive shape, so the first step was to trace the outline onto some card. By luck or judgement the size of the plank worked such that:
1. I made use of the whole width of the plank I had.
2. I had an extra 1cm all around to allow for a little inaccuracy on my part in sawing.
3. I had space for some bevelling - done by hand.
This became my template/pattern.
Step 4: Cut Your Timber
This design calls for timber top and bottom and I happened to have an old scaffolding plank to hand, which with a little sanding would fit our decor. I'd used one of these before and knew they would give me an acceptable finish. (You may need something classier.)
Using the template cut out four pieces of your timber (two top & two bottom)
Step 5: Sanding (Or Other Finish to Taste)
Sand your timber until you are happy with the look.
At this stage you may want to treat/stain/paint the timber but I wanted a natural beachy look.
Step 6: Spikes
Work out where you want your spikes (I used four per stand but three may work for you) and drill holes for them. You’ll need to work out how they fit depending on the design you’ve bought.
Fit the spikes.
Step 7: The Pipe & Measuring
Do some measuring.
You need to work out how much pipe, when fitted between your planks, will place the mid point of the speakers’ tweeters and woofers at ear level in your normal listening position.
This may well involve some compromise.
In my case I sat on our sofa with my wife and the cat.
I then worked out the average ear height.
(It may be that the cat’s listening experienced was compromised by my eventual decision, but she’s pretty deaf & has never complained.)
Allow for the spikes to sink into your carpet if you have it.
Allow for a few millimetres of Blu Tack (see later on).
Measure twice, cut once.
Top Tip. Cut just one at first, then balance it together and check you have it at the right length. If it’s good then cut the other.
Step 8: Thread Rod
I then fitted the thread rod. I counter sank the ends which, depending on the undersides of your speakers, may be unnecessary as both ends will mostly be out of sight.
Either way, just cut it so that you can secure the pieces of timber top & bottom using a nut and washer at each end.
Top Tip. As before, cut one at first. Then bolt it together and check you have it at the right length. If it’s good then cut the other.
Step 9: Seal the Pipe (Optional)
To ensure that I had no sand leakage later, I decided to seal the inside of the bottom of the pipe to the bottom piece of timber.
First I secured the pipe to the bottom piece of timber with a length of scrap timber and the thread rod, nuts & washers.
It was tricky to get the Sealant/Adhesive/Caulk to the bottom, so I squeezed some it inaccurately and then prodded it into place with my piece of plastic pipe – my prodder.
Once I’d done both I left them to dry.
Step 10: Sand Filling
I then filled each pipe with dry sand, tamping it down frequently.
Step 11: Bolting & Blu Tack
I bolted the top piece of timber into place and put four pieces of Blu Tack into position to fix the speakers into place. (This is a proper audiophile thing.)
Step 12: The Finished Article
You can now place your speakers on top of their new stands, wire them up and enjoy the fruits of your labour.