Homemade Talkbox???

Discussion in 'Effects, Pedals, Strings & Things' started by freak4liferu, Jan 22, 2008.

  1. freak4liferu

    freak4liferu Member

    Sep 25, 2007
    I was in need of a talkbox, had a guy tell me how to make a "make shift" one that will work close to that. Was wanting to know if someone else has tried this.

    He said to go out and get a cheap, small battery powered amp, like the mini marshall stack or something, get a small funnel and tape it in front of the speaker, and run a hose over the funnel up to your microphone and there ya go.. sounds easy, he said to AB this when i need it on. anyway, any thoughts? let me know if this has worked for anyone else.
  2. teefus

    teefus Silver Supporting Member

    Mar 15, 2004
    i had a buddy that made one out of a jbl horn driver. you step the driver down to the tube size you are using. gaffers tape might even work for this. if your amp has an extra speaker out and the ohms works out you are done. be careful, a 100 watt driver run by a medium to hi wattage amp can really rattle your fillings.
  3. tim boehlert

    tim boehlert Member

    Jul 16, 2007
    I made one back in the 70's, homemade box and all. I used an EV 8ohm driver, some surgical tubing and standard zip cord from/to the amplifier with an AC rated switch (toggle I think!) - it was killer, because of the good driver, and a nice Fender Super Reverb.

    I'd do about the same today - check under the Heil hood, or even look at Rocktron's offering - they have to be about the same - maybe some caps for frequency selection is all. Very straight-forward design though - just make sure the drive is rated for same impedance as your existing speaker cab, that you also have driver large enough to handle the power (100W minimum?), and your switch (ON/OFF) should be rated for high voltage (600V) should do...

    I have a Kustom Bag still, which I just broke out tonight - I'll reveres engineer that if you need more specifics.
  4. mcholley

    mcholley Member

    Feb 7, 2006
    N. CA
    I'd love to know about the bag!


  5. drolling

    drolling Member

    Feb 1, 2005
    Oh yeah - I'm none too handy with a soldering iron, but Joe (Walsh, in a GP interview about 30 years ago) made it sound so easy, I had to give it a shot.

    His recipe calls for a tweeter horn, a solid state practice amp. Besides the iron, you'll need a hacksaw to seperate the metal horn from the drivecoil. I borrowed one. The horn itself was a real cheapy from RadioShack

    Also removed the tone & vol pots on the amp & stuffed the whole thing into an enclosure I got when I picked up the horn.

    Then a trip to the plumbing dept. of my hardware store for some vinyl tubing.

    And that's about it - Thing's pretty fugly but still works perfectly after all these years & countless gallons of saliva that got drooled down the tube..
  6. tim boehlert

    tim boehlert Member

    Jul 16, 2007

    It's a Talk Box in every sense of the word, except that Kustom (Electronics) made only about 100 form what I've been able to find out through very knowledgeable resources. It's literally a driver as described, but in a portable bag - think wine bags from the 70's, with 1 cable (2 ends - 1x1/4" male jack that comes form the AMP out, and 1x1/4" female plug that goes to the speaker connector on your amp). The switch literally interrupts the signal and sends it to the the driver OR the speaker when thrown. It also has a strap, much like an old leather guitar strap that allows one to have it on your shoulder, so that the unit sits behind your back/guitar. The tube comes up in front of the guitar for easy placement in your mouth, and when you're ready to play, simply walk up to your microphone, throw the switch, and there you have it. I'll try to dig up a picture of it, or take a new one tonight.

    I had it out today just to make sure it was still in working order, and it worked great, albeit I'm a little awkward with it!

    Here's a blurb about it from AmpPage:

    It was a talk box from the very late '60's.

    While all talk boxes must present much the same function, The Bag's strongest point was the package: a big paisley wine sack with fringe along the seams and which you slung behind you with another shoulder strap. It was an artifact of the times -- riotously colored synthetic fabric over urethane padding.

    It was made of a compression horn driver attached to a foot long cylinder that connected to a few feet of 1/2" plastic hose and a mouthpiece (rescued from a bo^H^H water pipe, no doubt).

    A bag-mounted toggle switch with a plastic tapered 3" extension routed your amplified guitar signal either to the bag's speaker or to your amp cabinet.

    I first saw one in 1971 when Mike Pinera (of Blues Image) toured with Iron Butterfly. I bought one soon after adn was disappointed by the amount of PA system required to make it sound good.

    Here's another link to it w/pix: http://filters.muziq.be/model/kustom/thebag
  7. FloridaSam

    FloridaSam Member

    Oct 5, 2006
    Under a palm tree
  8. Curt Reaves

    Curt Reaves Member

    Oct 13, 2010
    Hello from Kansas City, I own an original Kustom Electlronics "The Bag" talkbox, vintage 1969. I will soon be posting a YouTube video for this extremely rare guitar device. See you soon! REVO revo
  9. Ronsonic

    Ronsonic Member

    May 14, 2006
    Sunny Tampa, Florida
    Always put a loop in the tube above the driver to catch slobber or run the tube upward for a distance past the mic. Otherwise that driver will have a very short life.

Share This Page

  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice