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tade 28th May 2007 04:40 AM

metal grills from Parts Express!
I just ran across these metal grills which look very useful for esl builders:
1.2mm steel, powder coated, and sold in pairs!

moray james 28th May 2007 03:27 PM

they are probably not flat to begin with but that's a moot point. They will not be flat if you try cutting them. They have a lip all the way arround (stamped). No way worth your while even trying to cut it off and expecting them to be flat. If they are flat (and I very much doubt it) you would have to turn them inside out and leave the lip in place. Most metal grills like this are stamped with a profile to stiffen them so they don't sing on thier own. There are people who will sell you flat stampe steel stators with proper powder coating on them so why not just get those?

tade 28th May 2007 03:44 PM

That was the best product that I had found thus far and thought that I might share it with the forum.
These are cheap and can come with the rest of my vast order from PE if I want. Plus, I see the lip as an advantage offering an easy option for mounting and increasing the strength of the assembly.
The best solution will be to buy a pair and to report on how useful that product is.

SY 28th May 2007 03:46 PM

moray, the PE page indicates that you can get these sheets unformed (flat) as an option. Seems interesting! My concern would be the hole size, which seems awfully big.

edit: Here's one. The rest can be gotten from the pull-down menu.

Lucius 28th May 2007 05:58 PM

Here's where I got mine. They are powder coated & flat. I picked them up as they are local....Click "speaker grilles"


moray james 29th May 2007 03:55 AM

Been down this road before...
I have not spoken with the fellow at this link but i believe he will sell insulated perf metal stators designed for ESL's.

I an mot trying to be a wet blanket regarding this issue. I have looked into this kind of project commercially. While speaker grill screens are perf metal and are powder coated they are not stator material. This is like looking at RF coax and saying hey this looks just like high voltage coax lets ues it cause it seems to work ok. They are not the same thing. Cosmetic (only concern is for looks) powder coating is not going to do it for ESL construction with any kind of reliability. Come on guys if it were as simple as that then companies like ML could be saving a small fortune. This is a cheap shot idea that may work and probably will have very much less than desired results. This leads people to chase the simple and cheap way out rather than to plan and do things properly. It is not so simple and it is not cheap. You time in a project like this is emense for most DIY builders. That time and effort deserve to be rewarded with results and long lasting satisfaction. This is not the place to be looking for a cheap and unknown solution (which has been explaind enough to be understood). Especially when the issue has been discussed to the point of being silly. This type of panel is most always fully exposed think about that. So your system pops a huge peak playing loud and someone has thier hands on both the stator panels cause they look so cool and where the heck is the sound comming from anyway? 10 or 12 Kv across thier heart and a cosmetic powder coating was never intended to insulate anywhere near that. If you were smart enought to place the sharp edged side of the perf metal outward away from the diaphragm the panel might not arc durring playback but the side that will arc is on the outside where people put thier hands. Somebody is now injured or worse. Wake up. I don't think that your home owners insurance will cover you for the law suit. Of course if it is only one of your kids you may be able to cut a deal and get time for neglect of some sort.

Calvin 29th May 2007 07:36 AM


I couldn´t agree more on this theme!!
Cheap is too cheap is DEAD cheap!


Few 30th May 2007 10:20 PM

On the other hand, for the last 8 years or so I've been listening to DIY ESLs that I made out of perforated steel that I merely spray painted with epoxy spray paint. They wouldn't make it as a commercial offering, but they've been great to listen to---plenty loud without arcing. There's more than one (or two) way(s) to make viable ESLs. They're not all equally sophisticated, but even the less sophisticated approaches can be very rewarding.


moray james 4th June 2007 09:00 PM

Few I agree but....
I think that I did say that these grills would / could work ok. That is not the point here. A lot of readers are looking for ready to build recipe type projects or directly applicable ideas and they don't want to think about it after they build it. There are losts of methods and ideas that a person can use which will work. I think that forums like this need to attempt to present to the lowest common demomoninator. The people with experience will know how to pick and choose the bits and pieces that work for them in a given application.
I have worked on ESL for decades and have over the years bin bitten by both supplies (lots) and output transformers (a big ouch) and once (still don't know how) got across the mains inside an ESL supply and that was a close call. I figure that I am a reasonably aware guy and know that such accidents can happen to most all constructors. Saftey needs to be an up front concern with such devices. There is a definate risk for people who find some painted perf metal panels to use as stators to use them fully exposed as they really do look attractive. There is a risk (serious risk) of shock or worse using panels that are not 100% hipot tested at well beyond normal operating voltages. Further insulated grills that work in a dry climate may not be as safe in an area of higher humidity. I think that if you really want to go with perf metal panels that you use professionally coated (intended for ESL use) panels, this would be money well spent. Short of that insulated wire stators are probably the most reliable and safest method of construction for the DIY builder. This would seem to be the method of preference in Holland where there is perhaps the largest DIY ESL community on the planet. ven with insulated wire stators I never uses them without finger protection in the form of louver grids and or dust covers to keep hands off. Even insulated wire can have pin holes and that combined with a thin layer of household cooking oil (from the air over time) or even humidity can give you shock it you are grounded. Keep your hobby fun and safe. Regards Moray James.

I_Forgot 5th June 2007 01:21 AM

If you have any sense at all, ESLs should be built with mechanical barriers that prevent contact with the stators. Powder coating may look nice, but I wouldn't trust a pair of MLs not to zap me if I touched both sides of the speaker at the same time.

Wire stator ESLs are similarly high-risk and I wouldn't touch them either. I don't care what anyone says about the breakdown resistance of the insulation. You're playing a fool's game if you touch them while they are playing. You may not get zapped today, but maybe tomorrow - all that is required is a flaw or a particularly loud transient to blow a hole through the insulation.

Other than the large hole size, I see no reason not to use these grills. I'd recommend getting two sets of them for each speaker- one pair to make the driver and the second to stand off from it a little to prevent contact with the driver.


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