Go Back   Home > Forums > >
Home Forums Rules Articles diyAudio Store Blogs Gallery Wiki Register Donations FAQ Calendar Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read

Planars & Exotics ESL's, planars, and alternative technologies

DIY electrostatic speakers for dummies
DIY electrostatic speakers for dummies
Please consider donating to help us continue to serve you.

Ads on/off / Custom Title / More PMs / More album space / Advanced printing & mass image saving
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 6th April 2011, 02:18 AM   #21
geraldfryjr is offline geraldfryjr  United States
diyAudio Member
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Jackson,michigan
Yes, it would be quite feasible to use a copper mesh if you don't mind the extra cost.

When I had set out to build my panels I wanted to use steel window screen so that I could solder the connections to the screen.
But it is not an off of the shelf item like it was years ago so I ended up with aluminium screen.

I haven't had any major problems connecting to aluminium as I have tried several methods, but, soldering is not one of them.

Copper would be very pretty after it is clear coated.

I have some stators that I made out of 1/16" copper clad TIG rod that I will either replate in copper to cover up the solder or maybe gold electroplating before they get a coating of clear acrylic. jer
  Reply With Quote
Old 6th April 2011, 05:32 AM   #22
geraldfryjr is offline geraldfryjr  United States
diyAudio Member
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Jackson,michigan
Here is a list of threads I composed a while back.
There are a quite a few more that need to be added but it is a good place to start with a wealth of information. jer

  Reply With Quote
Old 20th April 2011, 01:29 AM   #23
GDJ is offline GDJ  Canada
diyAudio Member
GDJ's Avatar
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Edmonton, Alberta, CANADA
Very good information. Thank you!
  Reply With Quote
Old 20th April 2011, 01:58 AM   #24
geraldfryjr is offline geraldfryjr  United States
diyAudio Member
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Jackson,michigan
I am planning a another build that is much wider in order to check the stability of the widest panel I can do the my material shortly.
And I will start a new thread when I do, Too document the procedure and too tackle the design flaws that I have run into . jer
  Reply With Quote
Old 20th April 2011, 03:12 AM   #25
GDJ is offline GDJ  Canada
diyAudio Member
GDJ's Avatar
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Edmonton, Alberta, CANADA
Sounds very interesting. The only thing I'm stuck on is the coating for the diaphragm. Some of the materials aren't available here in Canada (import/export legal BS). I've been monkeying with a combination of black ink and a very small amount of powdered Graphite, but alas the resistance is rather low. Not sure if it's the ink or the graphite or both.

Does look nice. Kinda like a dark gunmetal grey. Should save it as a paint colour.
  Reply With Quote
Old 20th April 2011, 03:31 AM   #26
geraldfryjr is offline geraldfryjr  United States
diyAudio Member
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Jackson,michigan
I have done some experiments using the PVA glue trick however I have not tried it as a diagphram coating on a working panel yet.
I might just give it a try out of curiousity.

On my rebuild I did use PVA glue very heavly doped with graphite for the charge ring and as a conductive glue.
This worked great!

But I still had some nickel print and I had used that to mend the broken stator connections.
I am thinking about trying it for stator connection on the next build in order to get away from using exotic hard to get materials.

However, Try to get a can of LICRON CRYSTAL if you can.
This stuff simply cannot be beat at the moment.

  Reply With Quote
Old 20th April 2011, 04:01 AM   #27
geraldfryjr is offline geraldfryjr  United States
diyAudio Member
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Jackson,michigan
I used a ratio 1:8 to 1:10 glue/water and it took A few drops of dawn dishsoap to get it to properly wet the mylar without pooling up into one huge droplet as it dried up.

Leaving a fairly transparent coating that seemed to adhere well to the mylar and its thickness was unmeasurable with my micrometer.

There are some closeup pics of it somwhere in those threads.

I still have that same sample, And after a year of being tossed around and handled the coating still does not readily come off when I rub it in between my thumb and fingers.
Infact upon re-examining it,it has no sign of deteriation.

There is also a heavy discussion of wheather or not the ink makes any difference and whether or not the graphite make too little resistance.

I believe a few have claimed that neither are needed.

There is also a question of how well it works in varying degrees of humidity.
Some say not so well in the dryer area's of the globe.

Charlie has used dish soap on one of his panels before, and, he said it worked.
So I'm thinking that the little bit needed in the water/glue for wetting might be suffciant.
So I might just try it so that I can save my precious licron for my larger final build.


Last edited by geraldfryjr; 20th April 2011 at 04:04 AM.
  Reply With Quote
Old 20th April 2011, 06:15 AM   #28
Calvin is offline Calvin  Germany
diyAudio Member
Calvin's Avatar
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: close to Basel

though I am certainly an advocat of sheet metal stators, I started with building wire stators many years ago.
When I was just a little boy, I asked my mother, what will it be.... Will it be wire? Will it be sheet? Hereīs what she said to me: "Que sera sera....Whatever will be will be........".

Both methods have their pros and cons and the choice depends on what kind of panel You intend to build, Your budget, Your manual skills and the amount of work Youīre prepared to invest.

Wire is good for flat panels while the best sheet metal stators are curved. If You want to stay flat, stay with wire.

If You intend to achieve a lower bandwidth limit below say 150Hz, stay with wire. Anywhere above 150Hz and curved metals are an alternative.

Wire is easily sourcable, cheap and relieves You from finding well coated metal sheets or to coat them Yourself.

It takes quite a bit of work to get all the wires perfectly straight if You donīt build a wire stretching jig. Sheet metal is lower on Your personal work effort if You can get prefinished, coated and curved sheets. Itīs alot of work though if You try to coat them Yourself. Be prepared to not be able to find a coater who is really able to do the job. They all promise: "Yes, we can..no problem." My experiences talk different. Over the last 25 years not one(!) coater delivered a coating that met the demands with his first try.

Wire allows for easy electrical segmentation and amplitude equalization, which reduces capacitive loading at the upper end of the frequency range and lowers the need for external equalization. This makes such panels typically an easier load to drive. Sheet metal panels feature a large and constant capacitive load which allows for lower transformation factors and better sounding audio transformers.

Chance of success is greater with wire stators. Curved metal sheets require a detail knowhow from builder and suppliers that usually takes several attempts before success.

There are small sonic differences between both styles and I prefer the increased dynamics of curved sheets panels, but both methods allow for a sonic quality way beyond dynamic drivers.


"Wrinkels wrinkles go away, back to the face of Doris Day" (prayer of an ESL-builder while stretching diaphragms)
  Reply With Quote
Old 22nd April 2011, 06:30 PM   #29
stokessd is offline stokessd  United States
diyAudio Member
stokessd's Avatar
Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: Grantham, NH
In my experience, perf-metal stators and 3M urethane foam tape is the easiest method to make ESL panels, but not the highest performance. The non-segmented nature of these designs means that you'll have laser beams of sound at higher frequencies. Combine these with a good transmission line enclosed woofer and you will be able to de-bone chickens in the sweet spot when it comes to dynamics. But if you move a foot or so away from the sweet spot, you'll lose huge amounts of treble energy. Here's a horizontal polar plot of my 48" x 18" ESL panels:

Here is just the first 5 degrees of rotation:

Dispersion is largely non-existent, and the speakers are a one man ride. the power response is not flat either due to the dispersion being so different throughout the spectrum.

Wire stators are the best choice (IMHO) for a really balanced non-beamy ESL, but they are a lot harder to construct, and EQ than a single big-ol' element.

  Reply With Quote
Old 22nd April 2011, 09:13 PM   #30
geraldfryjr is offline geraldfryjr  United States
diyAudio Member
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Jackson,michigan
Here is another method that I used to make wire stators.
Although I have not finished them yet.

I did go through A couple of soldering guns to complete them as I did this on my desk during one winter.

The plan was to build a jig so that I could use a small torch to quickly and evenly solder the the supports.
But I never got that far, aswell as finishing them(he,he,he).

But, Hopefully I will get to them this summer as I still need two more in order to build two six foot panels.
I am thinking about cutting on fo them into segments and just build a 3' two-way panel.

They are made from standard 3' X 1/16" tig wire spaced 1/16" apart.
And they just need to be coated with some clear acyrlic or polyurethane for a stator insulation coating.

I had experiemented with different support spacing and I had found that one or none will be needed once mounted in a proper frame structure.

But two is plenty as they have been shoved around for seven years without being damaged as thet are qiute heavy.

It was quite a job and very time consuming to build them by hand that is why I would suggest the extra effort of building a jig if you plan on building more than 4 of them.

Enjoy DIYer's ! jer
Attached Images
File Type: jpg STACK OF SIX STATORS.jpg (91.0 KB, 849 views)
File Type: jpg SPACING COMB JIG.jpg (116.2 KB, 829 views)
File Type: jpg ONE TIG STATOR.jpg (79.7 KB, 814 views)
File Type: jpg CLOSE UP OF ONE END.jpg (88.0 KB, 803 views)
File Type: jpg CLOSE UP OF MIDDLE SUPPORT.jpg (124.7 KB, 806 views)
File Type: jpg CLOSE UP OF ANOTHER SUPPORT END.jpg (89.1 KB, 208 views)
File Type: jpg CLOSE UP OF ANOTHER MIDDLE SUPPORT FRONT.jpg (116.3 KB, 179 views)
File Type: jpg ANOTHER ONE WITH DIFFERENT SUPPORT SPACING.jpg (97.9 KB, 240 views)
  Reply With Quote


DIY electrostatic speakers for dummiesHide this!Advertise here!
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
DIY Electrostatic speakers Audio Transformer??? pmscompany Planars & Exotics 49 22nd February 2009 03:28 PM
Apogee MPTS-1 speakers for Dummies jpuglise Multi-Way 1 20th February 2008 07:26 PM
DIY Amp fr Dummies? (me) bcycle Solid State 9 20th January 2006 10:12 PM
Finnish DIY electrostatic speakers peranders Multi-Way 1 25th September 2002 07:16 AM
electrostatic speakers junglejuice Planars & Exotics 3 22nd October 2001 09:32 PM

New To Site? Need Help?

All times are GMT. The time now is 12:00 PM.

Search Engine Optimisation provided by DragonByte SEO (Pro) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2017 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.
Resources saved on this page: MySQL 15.00%
vBulletin Optimisation provided by vB Optimise (Pro) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2017 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.
Copyright ©1999-2017 diyAudio