DIY project - cab design and build

J Factor

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
2,061
Good luck on your finals!

Thanks!

I had another 5 mins to play the cab today, this time in the house at extremely low volume. You can hear the pick and strings, and the floor creaking at points. Excuse the terrible playing, but here are some quick clips. It works!

1/4 medium gain


2/4 more medium gain


3/4 filthy (and laugh away at hearing the strings on this one - I'm really not hitting the guitar hard, it's just that quiet)


4/4 clean tones (plus a floor creaking)


These are also good examples of how good the TC-50 is at insanely low volume playing.
 

JJ321

Member
Messages
1,682
Nicely done! This has been one of my favorite threads in a while because I just picked up some materials to start on my own 2x12 cabinet.

How would you compare this one to your Atlas cab?
 

J Factor

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
2,061
Nicely done! This has been one of my favorite threads in a while because I just picked up some materials to start on my own 2x12 cabinet.

How would you compare this one to your Atlas cab?

Thanks!

I haven't been able to play the new cab at any sort of volume, so I can't properly compare sounds yet. I will keep you posted when I can finally get loud.

The Atlas cab is a work of art, and I never expected to meet the quality or tone with my homebuild, just to be lighter weight for dragging around. That said, the Atlas is heavy in every sense of the word, and if you want an heirloom quality cab I can't recommend them enough.
 

J Factor

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
2,061
I finally got to play the cab properly loud the other day (without the band). It sounds great! I hadn't yet put a finish on it or added the braces and batting, but I was very impressed.

My patron gear saint friend and I ran it with my Mesa TC-50, a Hiwatt DR505, and a THD Univalve, all properly cranked. The cab worked beautifully with all of them, especially the Hiwatt. What a great, flexible, lively sound in all cases. We also compared to a compact 4x12 loaded with V30s, and my homebrew 2x12 with V-types sounded far better to both of us, flat out, and even more impressive that it was at half the weight.

I did lots of sanding, dye staining, and polyurethane sealing yesterday, and it finally has a color! I originally wanted to keep it natural birch colored but I've been having some fun with aniline dye and mixed up an interesting turquoise. After trying it on some samples I decided I dug it enough to go for it. There are a good few flaws and finish issues, but not horrible for the first time I've done anything like this. I like how it came out with lots of character, and I've never seen another cab this color, though there's a part of me that still wants the natural look.

Tomorrow I'm bringing it with me to our friendly jam so I'll be able to hear it in a band context. If possible I'll grab some video or sound clips to share.

Post dye staining, before clear topcoat:

F446AD02-FA8E-431D-A03A-8CEE5427CF15.jpeg


After several coats of satin poly. There are a few spots I will touch up, and might lay on more clear later and lightly polish
B384BD9E-381C-4A85-A90D-9E94920C9C1F.jpeg


9AD015F2-7873-4AAF-A416-47069E09BB19.jpeg


D59194F8-6EB6-42AE-B131-97FBFDB67EE7.jpeg
 

slayerbear17

Member
Messages
4,460
Aren't the handles uncomfortable when lifting? I bought DIY cab years ago and the previous owner had them orientated like how you have it.

I had to turn them around, just cutting right into my wrist area when carrying.
 

J Factor

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
2,061
Aren't the handles uncomfortable when lifting? I bought DIY cab years ago and the previous owner had them orientated like how you have it.

I had to turn them around, just cutting right into my wrist area when carrying.

I don't find them uncomfortable. When I lift from both sides, only my fingers are curled under the bars, and my wrists are outside of the handles completely. If I was grabbing only one side with someone else holding the other, then my hand would be on the inside and it might be a little cramped, but this cab is light enough to carry alone.

I have them with the bar towards the top so the cab self-balances upright when carried. Since the handle pockets were cut in the center of the panels, if the handles were flipped, the bar would be below centerline and the cab would tend to tip forwards or backwards. Having the bar above the center of mass means the mass "hangs" rather than "tips".

I could have designed the pockets to be higher up, but this way the side panels could both be the same exact part, rather than two mirror image parts. Also, given the point of the design was to be lightweight for single person carry, the ergonomics of the handle insides were not as much a concern.
 
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