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Alpair 7.3eN/12pw WAW build
Alpair 7.3eN/12pw WAW build
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Old 20th February 2018, 07:09 PM   #1
Quattrofish is offline Quattrofish  United States
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Default Alpair 7.3eN/12pw WAW build

Iíve been enjoying my homebrew WAW speakers for a couple of years. When I built them I knew absolutely nothing about speaker design so I looked around for a design I could copy. Omega speakers had a good reputation, so I made a version of one of his Outlaw speakers using a Fostex F120a and a Dayton 8Ē sub. It sounded good enough that I was satisfied for a while but, reliable as the sunrise, the itch for something better soon reared its expensive head so I started a thread:

Am I getting the most from my Fostex F120a WAW?

The short answer to my question was yes.

And no.

Lots of reading and advice later, I realized that I still didnít know a thing about speaker design so I decided to try one of the Planet 10 designs using Mark Audio drivers. Dave was incredibly patient and generous with his knowledge, both on the thread and in 50-odd emails during the build process. This weekend I finished gluing up the cabinets, installed the drivers andÖ..wow.

The cabinets arenít veneered yet, and the drivers still have some breaking in to do, but these are already in an entirely different league from my previous speakers. So much more dynamic, with absolutely no shout. The bass I was so concerned about is there in profusion. I really didnít think the 12pw would compare to the Dayton sub and I was right, but in the wrong way. There is so much bass that I may have to plug up a vent or two to settle it down. Iíll play with positioning and give them more time to break in first, but this driver/enclosure combination defies imagination. They are also MUCH faster than the Daytons. I had the 7.3 enclosures done a week or so ago and, paired with them, the Dayton sounded geologically slow. The speed and extended range of the 12pw, on the other hand, matches beautifully with the 7.3. Almost like they were meant to work togetherÖ..hmm.

The woodwork is far from perfect, but I donít think my mistakes have any effect on the sound. They were time consuming but not especially difficult to make, though I will admit that my newly-acquired track saw made it infinitely easier than it would have been using my contractor-grade table saw. Safer too.

I also made some PLLXOs as part of this project. They were done a few weeks ago and made a HUGE difference from the start, even with the old speakers. With the new drivers I can really hear the extended range of the 12pw. The midrange is filled out more completely, without a discernable gap in the handoff from one driver to the other.


Now to select the veneer, and decide whether Iím going to do the sides in black (think Devore O/96) or veneer them the same as the front baffle.
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Last edited by Quattrofish; 20th February 2018 at 07:25 PM. Reason: Inline photos not working.
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Old 20th February 2018, 07:44 PM   #2
chrisb is online now chrisb
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Dude, I've built more than a few pair of "traps" myself, and you could have fooled me with the quality of the woodwork - they are not a simple monkey coffin, that's for sure.

I'd think at least of veneering the fronts and beveled port sections. It'll take lots filler and coats of high solids primer to fill the exposed edge grain of the BB ply. Of coarse, trimming out the veneer around the port slots takes some time and patience as well.
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Old 20th February 2018, 08:25 PM   #3
Quattrofish is offline Quattrofish  United States
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Originally Posted by chrisb View Post
Dude, I've built more than a few pair of "traps" myself, and you could have fooled me with the quality of the woodwork - they are not a simple monkey coffin, that's for sure.

I'd think at least of veneering the fronts and beveled port sections. It'll take lots filler and coats of high solids primer to fill the exposed edge grain of the BB ply. Of coarse, trimming out the veneer around the port slots takes some time and patience as well.
Thanks, Chris! I'm happy overall.

The main mistake I made was not building the lower ones first, then using that footprint to make sure the upper match. I did them separately, and my angles were not dead nuts, so the footprints are off by a mm or two (or three) at the rear corners.

The other issue was getting the tops and bottoms of the upper box even with the baffle where the driver cut out is. Cant just run the trim bit across the front without having anything for the bearing to ride on, so I had to do it freehand and sand. Ended up digging too deep in places.

I agree on the front and bevel veneering. It'd be tough to fill and polish the edges, and the pine I used for the spacers might not look great over time. I think a nice cherry or walnut will be lovely. Might stain the back and sides black, but still translucent enough to see the grain. I'll experiment and see. Might just veneer the whole thing.
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Old 20th February 2018, 08:26 PM   #4
planet10 is offline planet10  Canada
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Alpair 7.3eN/12pw WAW build
:^)

To reduce bass, damp all the vents… ie add more R to them. Use open cel foam, start with a little and add more until the bass is right.

dave
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Old 20th February 2018, 08:32 PM   #5
Quattrofish is offline Quattrofish  United States
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Originally Posted by planet10 View Post
:^)

To reduce bass, damp all the ventsÖ ie add more R to them. Use open cel foam, start with a little and add more until the bass is right.

dave
Roger that, Dave. Thanks.
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Old 20th February 2018, 08:40 PM   #6
Quattrofish is offline Quattrofish  United States
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Quote:
Originally Posted by planet10 View Post
:^)

To reduce bass, damp all the ventsÖ ie add more R to them. Use open cel foam, start with a little and add more until the bass is right.

dave
Something like this?

The Foam Factory, Open Cell Foam, Speaker Foam, Filter Foam
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Old 20th February 2018, 08:54 PM   #7
planet10 is offline planet10  Canada
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Alpair 7.3eN/12pw WAW build
That looks about right.

dave
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Old 20th February 2018, 11:58 PM   #8
Impunity is offline Impunity  Canada
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Quattrofish View Post


The woodwork is far from perfect, but I donít think my mistakes have any effect on the sound. They were time consuming but not especially difficult to make, though I will admit that my newly-acquired track saw made it infinitely easier than it would have been using my contractor-grade table saw. Safer too.



Mate! There's not a lot wrong with that woodwork. The cabinets look good and when veneered I think they will shine.
I'm a little surprised at the size of the small enclosure though as I think 9 liters is the recommended volume for the 7.3's.
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Old 20th February 2018, 11:58 PM   #9
jimbro is offline jimbro  United States
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Alpair 7.3eN/12pw WAW build
Quote:
Originally Posted by Quattrofish View Post
The woodwork is far from perfect
Please excuse the crudity of this model
They look fantastic. Great job!
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Old 21st February 2018, 12:08 AM   #10
planet10 is offline planet10  Canada
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I'm a little surprised at the size of the small enclosure though as I think 9 liters is the recommended volume for the 7.3's.
It is an aperiodically damped midTL. Gross volume is 8 litre, with the damping it is going to appear to be larger.

dave
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