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Old 25th April 2004, 08:48 PM   #31
SY is offline SY  United States
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That's an interesting idea; thermal bonding might be less of a hazard. You might want to check the conductivity of toner- I think it may be too low since it has to hold a charge, but I could be totally wrong.
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Old 26th April 2004, 05:26 PM   #32
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Extremy
This may already be obvious to you, but in case it's not...

Your 14" panels will need to be subdivided by spacers to prevent the diaphragm from contacting a stator. The wider the gap, the greater inter-spacer distance you can get away with. With reasonably flat and stable stators, I've successfully used a 1/16" gap and about 3-4" distance between spacers. When testing prototypes I tried a 1/32" gap with very thin aluminum stators (of the type recommended by Sanders). With that construction I found a 3-4" distance between stators to be unreliable. Once the stator takes on a slight curve---or worse yet a slight wrinkle---it's prone to trouble, and the aluminum was hard to keep perfectly flat. I've found perforated steel stators to be easier to work with (and more attractive). Just something to bear in mind when handling and mounting your stators.

Best of luck.
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Old 26th April 2004, 08:08 PM   #33
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Originally posted by SY
That's an interesting idea; thermal bonding might be less of a hazard. You might want to check the conductivity of toner- I think it may be too low since it has to hold a charge, but I could be totally wrong.

Any easy ideas on checking the conductivity of toner, I doubt the clerk at Office Max would know.
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Old 26th April 2004, 08:12 PM   #34
SY is offline SY  United States
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That may be the opposite of what you're saying. To hold a static charge, a material must be NONconductive.

An easy way to check is to make a Xerox copy of a short, fat, black line, preferably on a nonporous substrate (like an overhead slide), then see if the resistance is something measurable with an ordinary ohmmeter.
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Old 27th April 2004, 03:51 AM   #35
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The coating shouldn't be non-conductive so much as a really, really high resistance. Multiple meg. Witness the graphic rub technique. Carbon conducts, but has a really high resistance. Think in terms of the old telephone carbon mics.
I kinda like the toner idea. The idea of "printing" a membrane could start a whole new wave of ESL building...if toner turns out to have the right characteristics. I see nothing wrong with the idea of simply printing a black bar on a piece of paper and attempting to measure the resistance at, say, a quarter or half an inch. The resistance will quickly go beyond the upper limits of what an ordinary meter can read.
If I recall, toner is carbon powder in a fusible plastic base. If true, or perhaps I should say if still true (for all I know they've gone to analine dyes or something of that nature), then it might work well. The only drawback I can see to actually using a laser printer is that the heat might pre-shrink the membrane. On the other hand, you could still glue it to the frame.
If I remember, I'll try to measure the resistance of toner tonight when I get home.
Oh great...just what I need, another project...and me with something like fourteen projects lined up already.

Grey
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Old 27th April 2004, 07:33 AM   #36
Prune is offline Prune  Canada
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Take a look at these DIY full range 8-footer ESL panels:
http://www.ele.tut.fi/~artoko/audio/...range_esl.html
Smaller hybrid speakers here:
http://www.ele.tut.fi/~artoko/audio/audioindex.html
You could contact the guy and ask for construction details.
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Old 27th April 2004, 07:52 AM   #37
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I just finished making some esl's after buying the mylar and coating off ER audio. Mine are only tiny compared to some (600mm x 150mm)
Tensioning i used masking tape and my computer desk and then pressing my esl panel over the top. I used double sided tape as the insulator so it stuck straight on.

I havn't tested them yet since I can't make the PSU till i get all the components.

Also... Even if you had an A3 laser printer, I think the esl may be to small. The ones i've made are propably going to be used as the rear speakers for a surround sound setup (good excuse to make bigger and better ones for the front ). And if you were thinking of breaking the toner open, i'm pretty sure the stuff causes cancer.
I'd keep with the graphite or buy some coating from ER. I got the more expensive stuff (sorta looks like ink to me, nasty black stuff) and it applied fine with very little effort at all.
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Old 27th April 2004, 08:47 AM   #38
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I don't think most toner is conductive, since the pigment is usually coated with plastic resin.
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Old 27th April 2004, 12:17 PM   #39
SY is offline SY  United States
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Default Charlie the toner

I did the experiment myself and confirmed that the toner is quite nonconductive. A square showed greater than 30 meg resistance (the limit of my meter). Pretty much as I thought, but it's nice to actually confirm things in the real world once in a while.
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Old 27th April 2004, 05:04 PM   #40
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Default alternatives...

hello, this is my first post...

i have been looking at esl speakers for a while now, and am interested in building a pair, and i was wondering if there are any alternatives to perforated metal, i noticed on the esl information page that several of the plans have rods...

i would like to keep this pretty simple...and if there aren't any easy alternatives (to perforated metal) where would i go about finding some? i would like to stay away from ordering it from the internet if at all possible..
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