#1
Okay, I am planning to make myself a custom guitar cabinet. Don't know why I have the inspiration to do this all of a sudden, but I am gonna do it. My idea right now is to do a 2X12, with two Celestion speakers... still deciding on the specific model. If you guys can help me with any of these points, I;d appreciate it:

1: Does the type of wood matter? My plan was just to use some (thick) plywood to start, but since I would be coating the inside walls of the cab with "soundproof" material (to prevent sound bouncing inside the cab) I don't know how much of a difference it would make.

2: I would have no problem with wiring the thing, but would the speakers I bought come with a wiring kit? Or would I have to go grab all of my materials elsewhere? I assume it's just wiring the speakers to the output jack (not sure if I need to do series or parallel yet) and a wire to ground the speakers.

3: Are there any certain specifications I need to make note of? Like, Would making the enclosure TOO big destroy the sound?

4: Open back? Or Closed back? Not sure what the advantages and disadvantages are. If it helps, I am looking for a classic rock/metal tone with some crunch to it. Think EVH met with Randy Rhoads and Alexi Laiho (just not as trebly!)

And also: Is there anything else important that a n00b like me should know? I have the tools available, so cutting/gluing/nailing would be no issue to me.

Thanks guys!
Quote by sporkman7
so what wierd things can u guys do? no not like laser vision or meat vision or something, but like random stuff that usually comes in handy
#2
Quote by nedthehead
Okay, I am planning to make myself a custom guitar cabinet. Don't know why I have the inspiration to do this all of a sudden, but I am gonna do it. My idea right now is to do a 2X12, with two Celestion speakers... still deciding on the specific model. If you guys can help me with any of these points, I;d appreciate it:

1: Does the type of wood matter? My plan was just to use some (thick) plywood to start, but since I would be coating the inside walls of the cab with "soundproof" material (to prevent sound bouncing inside the cab) I don't know how much of a difference it would make.

2: I would have no problem with wiring the thing, but would the speakers I bought come with a wiring kit? Or would I have to go grab all of my materials elsewhere? I assume it's just wiring the speakers to the output jack (not sure if I need to do series or parallel yet) and a wire to ground the speakers.

3: Are there any certain specifications I need to make note of? Like, Would making the enclosure TOO big destroy the sound?

4: Open back? Or Closed back? Not sure what the advantages and disadvantages are. If it helps, I am looking for a classic rock/metal tone with some crunch to it. Think EVH met with Randy Rhoads and Alexi Laiho (just not as trebly!)

And also: Is there anything else important that a n00b like me should know? I have the tools available, so cutting/gluing/nailing would be no issue to me.

Thanks guys!

never done it, but I know some of this

1. Yes it matters quite a bit. First off, you need a sturdy cab obviously, so sturdy wood is a must. Second, the acoustics of a cab matters slightly. A lot of people use birch plywood (Avatar, EarCandy, Etc.), and I heard Mesa uses like marine grade baltic birch or something. So birch is probably safe to use. don't know about soundproofing. I don't think i'd do it.
2. Most likely need to buy wires and jacks. Cheap stuff, so it shouldn't matter too much.
3.Size is important. Big gives it more low end. Like Mesa's oversized cabs. They're famous for the thundering low end. Too big, and you might as well not even have a cab. Get dimensions of standard cabs and work with those.
4.Closed back is what most cabs are. It compresses it a bit, adding low end and making it sound tighter. combos are open backed to make the sound spread out. It sounds more open and seems a bit louder. I prefer closed back for metal stuff. To get Alexi stuff, you have to have closed back. That tone is nice and punchy.
Jackson RR5 ivory w/ EMG 81/85
Jackson DX6 w/ SD Distortion & Dimarzio Super Distortion
Fender Starcaster Sunburst
Mesa/Boogie DC-3
Johnson JT50 Mirage
Ibanez TS-9
Morley Bad Horsie 2
Boss CE-5

ISP Decimator
Boss DD-6
Korg Pitchblack
#3
Quote by apak
never done it, but I know some of this

1. Yes it matters quite a bit. First off, you need a sturdy cab obviously, so sturdy wood is a must. Second, the acoustics of a cab matters slightly. A lot of people use birch plywood (Avatar, EarCandy, Etc.), and I heard Mesa uses like marine grade baltic birch or something. So birch is probably safe to use. don't know about soundproofing. I don't think i'd do it.
2. Most likely need to buy wires and jacks. Cheap stuff, so it shouldn't matter too much.
3.Size is important. Big gives it more low end. Like Mesa's oversized cabs. They're famous for the thundering low end. Too big, and you might as well not even have a cab. Get dimensions of standard cabs and work with those.
4.Closed back is what most cabs are. It compresses it a bit, adding low end and making it sound tighter. combos are open backed to make the sound spread out. It sounds more open and seems a bit louder. I prefer closed back for metal stuff. To get Alexi stuff, you have to have closed back. That tone is nice and punchy.

Thanks for the reply dude! Just a response:

1: Makes sense about the wood... increase my budget and start shopping. I will get ideas from other cabs I like. And I heard if you soundproof the inner walls of the cab, the sound is projected forwards better directly from the speaker. I MAY be wrong though.

2: Gotcha. To Radioshack!

3: Hmm... So, putting you on the spot a bit, but what if I wanted a tighter tone? Like, Mesa's are loose, but I'd call something along the lines of EVH or even Petrucci to be tighter. So that would mean I would want... not small, but fitting to the speakers (with room to vibrate a bit!)

4: Yeah. I'm not looking for a boomy sound. I'm more into the mid driven sound, but kind of modern and evenly balanced. Looks like I am going closed back... hmm. But I would need a way to remove the back as well! Predrill some screws into the wood I guess
Quote by sporkman7
so what wierd things can u guys do? no not like laser vision or meat vision or something, but like random stuff that usually comes in handy
#4
Quote by nedthehead
Thanks for the reply dude! Just a response:

1: Makes sense about the wood... increase my budget and start shopping. I will get ideas from other cabs I like. And I heard if you soundproof the inner walls of the cab, the sound is projected forwards better directly from the speaker. I MAY be wrong though.

2: Gotcha. To Radioshack!

3: Hmm... So, putting you on the spot a bit, but what if I wanted a tighter tone? Like, Mesa's are loose, but I'd call something along the lines of EVH or even Petrucci to be tighter. So that would mean I would want... not small, but fitting to the speakers (with room to vibrate a bit!)

4: Yeah. I'm not looking for a boomy sound. I'm more into the mid driven sound, but kind of modern and evenly balanced. Looks like I am going closed back... hmm. But I would need a way to remove the back as well! Predrill some screws into the wood I guess

3. Don't know. I'm pretty sure much of tightness is mostly whether it's closed back or not.
4. well, open back isn't boomy. A closed back has more umph AND is tighter sounding. Like it gets slightly compressed, which contributes to a bit more punch. You can also do half closed, like some people. Like put a cover over one speaker on the back. Removable i think is better.
Jackson RR5 ivory w/ EMG 81/85
Jackson DX6 w/ SD Distortion & Dimarzio Super Distortion
Fender Starcaster Sunburst
Mesa/Boogie DC-3
Johnson JT50 Mirage
Ibanez TS-9
Morley Bad Horsie 2
Boss CE-5

ISP Decimator
Boss DD-6
Korg Pitchblack
#5
Wood not really, a decent bit of 3\4 inch ply will do the job, it doesnt have to be marine grade eithier. Youll want a 1" baffle though, just to make sure it doesnt move. Once you work out the volume needed, it might be worth you while to work with a slightly smaller number. Also bracing beats stuffing anyday, so try and have the bracing as good as possible, so you dont have to fill the cab with anytype of foam. Smaller cabs increase the lows but you loose high end response, while bigger cabs can loose response altogether. What speakers are you using.
Yamaha TRB1006
Fender MIA jazz bass
Hora Hybrid double bass
Hartke lh 500
Ev 606L
Epiphone les paul
#6
I love a good DIY cabinet thread

1) Yes, the wood matters. The thickness and quality grade of the type of wood you use will determine it's structural resonance. The thinner the and lower grade the material you use, the more the panels will resonate. 3/4" 13 layer birch plywood is pretty standard and works well. Around me it can be had at Lowes for $50 for a 4' x 8' sheet, enough to do a 212.

2) You will have to buy the parts to wire it up yourself

3) My only advice regarding size would be to search sound files on a website such as www.netmusicians.com and decide which cab you like the most and work off that design.

4) For the type of sound you're looking for, closed back is what you need.


Bracing is a very good idea and for a guitar cab, a single brace running from the front to rear baffle is sufficient. Stuffing may also be a good idea but don't permanently attach anything until you've experiemented. In a speaker cabinet there are two types of damping. Panel resonance damping (bracing) and accoustic damping(stuffing materials), which serves the purpose of absorbing the sound waves that bounce around inside the cabinet. These internal waves bounce around inside your cab and actually come back out through the speaker cone causing distortion. Some will argue that guitar cabinets are designed to work with that distortion. That's why I suggest experimenting first. The standard polyfill stuffing will not absorb internal sound waves though, it will only make the speakers seem like they are in a slightly larger enclosure. There are dozens of internal stuffing options so start reading and decide for yourself what you want to use and experiment before attachinging anything permanently.
Guitar:
Dean Vendetta 3 - Dave Mustaine Livewires

Amplifier
Carvin X100B - Bias Mod - Tungsol 12AX7's - JJ KT77's

I have built the most badass 212 that puts all others to shame
#7
https://www.ultimate-guitar.com/forum/showthread.php?t=1142063

If i may, thats the last cab i built, and the bracing in it is damn good, i have absolutely no resonating on the boards. I think all the information is in there. But more bracing at first to be sure is better then having to open up the cab again and see what is needed. What speakers are you getting?
Use speakon jacks on the cab, as these are now the standard and the best or banana jacks as these are also great and in my opinion both are better at moving sound the 1\4" jacks. Make sure to use balanced cable when wiring up the cab, it is also known as loudspeaker cable.
Do many guitar cabs have porting or horns. I cant think of the top of my head. But yes what are you planing to tune yours to.
Yamaha TRB1006
Fender MIA jazz bass
Hora Hybrid double bass
Hartke lh 500
Ev 606L
Epiphone les paul
#8
I don't mean to start an arguement here or hijack the OP's thread but a few points need to be made.

Fatgoogle: (love the name btw) There's no way you can know whether or not your cabinet resonances without measuring equipment. Guitar cabinets by nature have very little anyways compared to car speakers or home audio loudspeakers because the xmax is smaller and the pressures inside the cab aren't as high so panel resonance isn't 100% critical but can still make a difference.

A single 2" x 2" brace running from the front to the back of a 212 (since that's what this thread is about) would be much better bracing than the framework you claim as bracing in your cabinet. Framework is just that, framework. A cabinet doesn't have to have a frame to be built. When dealing with speaker cabinets and large panels, you must realize that panel resonance is much greater around the center of the panel than at the joints so using a frame as the only form of bracing is not as effective; which is why I suggested to the OP that he use a single brace from the front to the back right in the middle of the panels.


Why do you suggest using balanced cable? My limited knowledge of balanced cables pertains to home audio designs and it being used in interconnects, not speaker cable. From what i understand about it, it's completely unecessary for speaker wire and serves no purpose. That's not to say that I'm right and you're wrong, I'm just interested in what you have to say about the subject if you don't mind.

As far as the connection to the cab, OP, you can use whatever you'd like but as i always suggest; do your research and figure out what you want to use. I can't confirm or deny that speakon jacks are becoming the standard but if you decided to use speakon or banana plugs, you may be forced to make your own speaker cable since there probably aren't many amplifiers that come stock with speakon connectors.

Since we're posting cab pics for the OP's benefit, I submit exhibit B:




This was built quickly as a prototype of mine to use so i can test out internal modifications such as stuffing materials and baffle designs. Which is why it's only butt-jointed instead of finger jointed and I haven't radiused the edges or covered it either for the same reason.
Guitar:
Dean Vendetta 3 - Dave Mustaine Livewires

Amplifier
Carvin X100B - Bias Mod - Tungsol 12AX7's - JJ KT77's

I have built the most badass 212 that puts all others to shame
Last edited by MeanwiththeDean at Jul 31, 2009,
#9
Loads od speaker cable manufactures make speakon-speakon, speakon-1\4" etc. so their not rare at all.

My fame is bracing, before i lared the sides back etc onto it, i put a cross in each section so the the middle was well braced. But i dint think of it as a frame. I thought of it as bracing from the inside out if you get me, and it does what it does.
On resonating, i meant the wood moving, which from what i know you dont want atall, so i didnt want the wood to resonate, so i braced it all, properly.
On the cable bit aswell, i just used speaker cable as that was what i had, and it seemed obvious as, you use a speaker cable from head to cab, why not from input to speaker.

Mean with the dean:
Your cabs great and looks to be alot better constructed than mine, and the only problem i can see is rear mounting. I would have thought it would have been alot more stable with front mounting and more secure. ??
Yamaha TRB1006
Fender MIA jazz bass
Hora Hybrid double bass
Hartke lh 500
Ev 606L
Epiphone les paul
#10
Gentlemen, you have no idea how excited I am to see another cab thread!
Wood matters, but in varying degrees depending on your design. You want wood that will be strong and void free. If you are insulating the inside, then tonal properties of the wood start to matter less, but of course it never hurts to use the good stuff!

I am of a different vein than Fatgoogle and MeanwiththeDean as I prefer open back cabs. But for what you want Nedthehead, closed back is your best option. Closed back cabs truncate certain frequencies, which is why they sound "tighter" or "punchier".

I think that rear mounting allows a better seal between the speaker and the baffle. I am intrigued by the 1" baffle suggestion. I have not tried one that thick because it seems excessive to me. I am curious to hear about your results.

I agree with MeanwiththeDean about bracing, a brace down the middle of the board (especially your back, top, and bottom because they are the longest boards) will be more effective benefit-to-weight wise than a frame.

With the jacks, if you plate mount them, you can always swap the style later. Wiring is simple, just some wire, and a jack, and a way to mount the jack.

Since everyone else is doing it:

#11
Cedricmods, i don't know if you realized but thats a bass cab and the speakers alot more powerful than a guitar speaker, 450 watts etc etc and it really packs it. I used a 1" baffle well to make sure i wasnt getting any flex. I would go for round ports if you can, but actually i havent seen any guitar cabs with ports so ehhh. With bass cabs you loose way to much low end with open backed so thats why i go for closed back but ported as sealed, have more punch and attack but less low end and response through the range.

For front and rear mounting, yes most speakers have a seal on the front of them so it makes sense to rear load them, but i put my own seal, which is a foam around the speaker hole, and this means i get an airtight seal and front mounted.

I might get some cheaper bass speakers and experiment, decent ones are to expensive to mess with. Sealed, rear front loaded etc. See what comes out.
Yamaha TRB1006
Fender MIA jazz bass
Hora Hybrid double bass
Hartke lh 500
Ev 606L
Epiphone les paul
Last edited by fatgoogle at Jul 31, 2009,
#12
Ah, I did not realize until I read your entire thread that it is a 15" bass cab. It can be so difficult to judge size from a picture. You are right that closed back is almost essential for bass.
Also, bass speakers displace a lot of air (the cone has to move further for low frequency/longer wavelength notes) so for max efficiency you do need either a port or something that will allow volume change (in litres, not loudness) as the speaker moves. An interesting idea that I have read about, but not tried, is to put a non-working speaker in the rear of the cab so that it can flex inverse to the working speaker.

Is there a particular reason you chose to front mount your speakers?
Last edited by cedricsmods at Jul 31, 2009,
#13
Simply cause it seemed easier, really no thought went into it, i just mounted it on the front
Yamaha TRB1006
Fender MIA jazz bass
Hora Hybrid double bass
Hartke lh 500
Ev 606L
Epiphone les paul