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Rookie Attempt at Veneering A Pair Of Speakers.

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waqasr

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Hi Guys, first real post here. So Ive always wanted a pair of high end wood finished speakers, they just look so nice imo, however I didnt want to pay the 1000s they usually cost.

So I have 2 pairs of mission M74 floor standing speakers which sound phenomenal but the vinyl wood effect didnt really tickle my fancy. It was a black effect and the speakers were knocked on the corners, not pretty overall but worth salvaging.

Never having dont any sort of wood work and researched and came across wood veneer. I wasnt worried about the species of the wood just that it had to be wood! So I found some cherry which wasnt too expensive and started work on my speakers.
20160417_212148 by joe blogggs, on Flickr

All corners shaped
20160418_161513 by joe blogggs, on Flickr

Then I first started sticking the veneer on with contact cement but this was proving to not be very economical with alot of cement used and the fact of once I set it down it was down for good. So I done some reading and came across the PVA and iron on method, so that was used the rest of the way. Then cut and sanded the veneer which ended up with this
20160802_180719 by joe blogggs, on Flickr

Now this was looking promising and I knew the colour of stain I wanted. However little did I know that cherry was supposed to be a porous and hard to stain wood with blochyness. So after more research I ended up ordering the General Finishes conditioner and rosewood gel stain. This worked really well and gave me no blochyness (atleast I couldnt see any, maybe you pros can?)

20160801_205744 by joe blogggs, on Flickr

Now I wanted a high gloss finish. Knowing nothing about finishing wood to a high gloss finish, but being an enthusiast car detailer and car sprayer I though why not use 2k Automotive clear coat, its high build, high gloss, very hard wearing, UV resistant etc. So after 3 coats I ended up with a nice glossy albeit orange peely finish. Unfortunately no pictures of that but 3 days later I started flattening with 1500grit upto 3000 and started polishing.

Wetsanding testing
20170813_033046 by joe blogggs, on Flickr

Then I used my car compounds and polishes to bring the finish to a high gloss, for any detailer that maybe here I used a Lake country purple foamed wool pad on rotary and Meguiars M101 cutting compound and finished with Carpro Reflect Finishing polish. Then coated with Bilt Hamber Double Speed Wax.

20170813_163336 by joe blogggs, on Flickr

20170811_163349 by joe blogggs, on Flickr

20170804_160027 by joe blogggs, on Flickr

20170813_163405 by joe blogggs, on Flickr

20170813_163303 by joe blogggs, on Flickr

20170813_170326 by joe blogggs, on Flickr

Thanks for reading if you got this far but I learned alot on this project and thoroughly enjoyed it, next time however If i do decide to veneer my other pair I will use peel and stick veneer for a smoother finish, unless you guys can recommend me something else?
 

AES

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Well if those speakers were mine waqasr, I wouldn't be too keen on such a very high gloss finish. BUT that is purely a personal opinion, and purely a matter of taste. Bearing in mind your total lack of experience (similar to my own when it comes to veneering - and lots of other things too, come to think of it!) I'd also be mighty proud of the overall finished job - especially looking at the before/after pix. Lovely neat work.

So I would say very well done Sir! =D> You should be proud of yourself. And thanks for posting BTW, I also have an old pair of big speakers, but they're from the mid '80's, so although they are veneered (walnut) they're now looking pretty tired and chipped in some places, having moved house several times.

So although I wouldn't be aiming for such a high gloss finish (sorry) you've certainly given me something to think about (and yet ANOTHER item to add to roundtoit list).

Well done.

AES
 

AndyT

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As above^^^ - very impressive transformation.

I like the photos too - especially this one - very nice abstract art effect!

 

custard

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It's the super gloss finish that hits you first. But the thing I'm most impressed with is your veneering, for someone who's never done any veneering before that is an exceptionally tidy job!

=D>
 

Eric The Viking

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What a good job!

If I might make one suggestion: consider making some slip-over covers to protect them, possibly in carpet felt or similar, with a waterproof outer covering. You'll be really gutted if someone bumps into them or drops something on top.

I know this because I have a pair of ex-BBC LS3/7s. They aren't the world's most attractive speakers (rather an unpleasant industrial look, IMHO), but they sound great.

But someone tipped an inkpot over on top of one of them, and didn't clear it up very fast (dark blue or black ink - it's hard to tell). I've tried a cabinet scraper, which has helped, but the ink is right down in the rather open-grain of the veneer, and I think it's beyond an easy fix.

So I'll probably be doing the same thing in due course, although probably not to quite that standard of finish!

You've greatly encouraged me. Really well done!

E.
 

Phil Pascoe

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What is the veneer on yours, Eric? Years ago I sanded down some ash that I had used black Rustins Plastic Coating (no longer made, iirc) on and it looked stunning "limed" in black. A design opportunity, perhaps?
 

Eric The Viking

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Not sure. Possibly Teak.

I'm minded to rework them properly, as they are rather ugly in their original form. They're very unusual in having been made by the BBC in-house (you'll see them described as "Rogers" on the net, but that is incorrect), and the "3" designation means "luggable" for outside broadcast use. Although they were more popular in studios and control rooms, they thus have corner protectors of black anodised aluminium round the front and back, big black ugly cast aluminium handles sticking out of the sides, and wooden skids underneath. And warning signs about high sound pressure levels!

They're also huge, wider than they are deep, and the fronts look horrid if you remove the grilles too (the ports are obviously cardboard tube, for example). But they do sound really good!

The veneer is solidly attached and fairly thick, if scuffed and dented in places. So my plan is to clean up the outer surfaces and re-veneer, over the top of the original, additionally to make new grilles for the front that are nicer. In other words turn them from a bit of industrial kit into something the DC doesn't mind in the lounge! I'll probably also add a shelf at the back for the necessary power amps. They're a nuisance too, as you have to find somewhere to put them and the extra cabling is annoying (the amp-to speaker cable is really inflexible and the plug sticks out of the back by about 4" when you include the cable).

I'll try to post some pics if I get time, but honestly they sound nicest in a darkened room ;-).
 

n0legs

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I also use automotive 2k, brilliant stuff.
Excellent job you've done there my friend =D>
 

Steveshj

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Hi,

Absolutely brilliant veneering job. As one with limited veneering success, I'm envious of this quality as a first attempt.

Hi Eric, I had a pair of LS-3s for many years, brilliant speakers, I reluctantly had to sell them when I moved into a very small flat, always regretted it.

Steve
 

rafezetter

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Blimey that's some shine you've got going there! For a first time veneering job (which I've not done yet but is on the cards soonish) I'd be extremely pleased if I matched that, I noticed you made sure the grain was all following the same direction sides > top and t'other side, seems obvious to some, but I've seen it botched several times with factory made furniture.

Not heard of the PVA and iron on method - I'll have to look into that.
 

waqasr

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Thanks for all the kind replies guys :)

custard":12a5u0lu said:
It's the super gloss finish that hits you first. But the thing I'm most impressed with is your veneering, for someone who's never done any veneering before that is an exceptionally tidy job!

=D>
Thank you custard, I remember when I was asking for staining advice on cherry, your very detailed informative posts helped alot :wink:

rafezetter":12a5u0lu said:
Blimey that's some shine you've got going there! For a first time veneering job (which I've not done yet but is on the cards soonish) I'd be extremely pleased if I matched that, I noticed you made sure the grain was all following the same direction sides > top and t'other side, seems obvious to some, but I've seen it botched several times with factory made furniture.

Not heard of the PVA and iron on method - I'll have to look into that.
Your too kind. But yea it just seemed to make sense to keep it going the same direction. The PVA method I saw on youtube, using woodglue you coat the item and the veneer, let it dry and then put them together and iron it on, sort of melting the glues together I guess. Personally wont be using that method on large flat items.
 

Karl

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Excellent work. The high gloss finish isn't to my taste, but the actual veneering work is top drawer (I was going to add "for a first effort", but that's irrelevant!).

Cheers

Karl
 

flying haggis

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Eric The Viking":ouzcd5jw said:
Not sure. Possibly Teak.

I'm minded to rework them properly, as they are rather ugly in their original form. They're very unusual in having been made by the BBC in-house (you'll see them described as "Rogers" on the net, but that is incorrect), and the "3" designation means "luggable" for outside broadcast use. Although they were more popular in studios and control rooms, they thus have corner protectors of black anodised aluminium round the front and back, big black ugly cast aluminium handles sticking out of the sides, and wooden skids underneath. And warning signs about high sound pressure levels!

They're also huge, wider than they are deep, and the fronts look horrid if you remove the grilles too (the ports are obviously cardboard tube, for example). But they do sound really good!

The veneer is solidly attached and fairly thick, if scuffed and dented in places. So my plan is to clean up the outer surfaces and re-veneer, over the top of the original, additionally to make new grilles for the front that are nicer. In other words turn them from a bit of industrial kit into something the DC doesn't mind in the lounge! I'll probably also add a shelf at the back for the necessary power amps. They're a nuisance too, as you have to find somewhere to put them and the extra cabling is annoying (the amp-to speaker cable is really inflexible and the plug sticks out of the back by about 4" when you include the cable).

I'll try to post some pics if I get time, but honestly they sound nicest in a darkened room ;-).
I remember the 3/7s when we had them in the continuity suites, as you say ugly b*stards but nice sounding (do you have them on the metal stands?) I would love a pair of 5/8s but I think I will stick with my 3/5s that still (I think take some beating)

ps ls3/7 for sale here (no amp/crossovers though)

http://www.ebay.ca/itm/BBC-KEF-LS3-7-de ... Sw28pZzgPg
 

ColeyS1

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Those speakers though- wowsers !!!! First class job

Sent from my SM-G900F using Tapatalk
 

Tealeaf

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Just seen this thread because of the recent update and I'm seriously impressed. Great job for a first veneering!
 
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