DIY can be very frustrating (or things I wish I knew first)... - Page 2 - Home Theater Forum and Systems - HomeTheaterShack.com

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post #11 of 25 Old 06-25-13, 01:34 PM
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Re: DIY can be very frustrating (or things I wish I knew first)...

Thanks for these tips. I'm sure I can add a couple more by the time I'd done with my build, too.
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post #12 of 25 Old 06-28-13, 12:15 PM
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Re: DIY can be very frustrating (or things I wish I knew first)...

If lilmike suggests you do something, do it! He suggested I use speakons in my enclosure. I didn't know much about them so I ordered in some binding posts. Then my new amp came in and was shipped with free speakon cables. After connecting a speakon connector to the amp, and disassembling one to connect to the binding posts, I will never use another binding post again. Speakons rock!
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post #13 of 25 Old 06-28-13, 12:46 PM Thread Starter
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Re: DIY can be very frustrating (or things I wish I knew first)...

I made some jigs that will help me in cutting MDF more accurately. I could not justify the cost of buying a Festool TS55REQ track saw ($600) so I decided to build my own. I glued two long MDF planks together, the bottom one is 1/2" and the top is 3/4". Make sure that the guide edge is factory cut, it should be longer than the cutting edge to align the saw before it cuts the board and past the board as well. I then placed the saw against the straight edge and cut the excess off. I use the cut edge as a guide. I just align the guide edge to the cut line and presto, I get a straight cut. Instead of using clamps, I glued a rubber non-skid strip to the bottom of the guide. The guide does not move at all when I place the saw and cut the wood.

Note that the motor housing is faced away from the guide. I found out that the raised guide edge forced me to raise the depth of the cut, which with the 1/2" cutting edge, limited my cutting depth. [EDIT]: well, this did NOT work. The saw cannot be held level to the board when cutting against the guide as there is not enough area for the saw to sit on evenly. You have to have the saw with the motor side resting on the guide. This means that the saw guide itself has to be 1/4" thick to limit interference with the motor housing.

I also made a 45 degree cutting guide to cut braces easily and accurately. I glued two strips of wood angled 45 degrees under a board. I placed another strip of the wood that will be cut at the 45 degree angle in between to so that the two strips held the wood in place at the correct angle. i just then glued another smaller guide on top of the assembly that will guide the saw along the straight edge.


here is a picture of the two planks glued together
The guide with the rubber non-skid pad attached with spray adhesive
This is to show how to use it to cut a board, just align the guide against the cut line
here is the 45 degree angle cut guide
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Last edited by jon96789; 07-08-13 at 02:03 PM.
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post #14 of 25 Old 07-08-13, 07:11 PM Thread Starter
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Re: DIY can be very frustrating (or things I wish I knew first)...

Just another hint... Buy a good circular saw if you don't have one or access to a table saw. i have a cheap Black and Decker saw. The problems are two-fold. The bezel or base is stamped metal. This metal flexes easily making cuts a bit ragged. Get a saw with a thicker base or better yet, cast metal.

The second issue is it uses a wing nut to tighten the base at different angles, such as a 45 degree cut. When you tighten the wingnut, the torque throws the angle of a bit.

Also, try and find a saw that has a outlet that can fit a vacuum to the exhaust where the sawdust comes out. Makes life a lot less messier.
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post #15 of 25 Old 07-08-13, 10:03 PM
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Re: DIY can be very frustrating (or things I wish I knew first)...

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Also, try and find a saw that has a outlet that can fit a vacuum to the exhaust where the sawdust comes out. Makes life a lot less messier.
Oh man, yeah! I just picked up a Craftsman plunge router that has vacuum ports for dust collection. I was blown away by how well it worked with my plain old $30 ShopVac. Instead of clouds of mdf dust, there was only the slightest trace of dust in the air in my garage once I was done.


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post #16 of 25 Old 07-16-13, 10:34 AM
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Keeping the open nozzle of the PL tube sealed with a "wrap" of 2 inch thin package sealing tape keeps the solvent in and the whole tube readably useable with very little waste.
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post #17 of 25 Old 07-19-13, 01:14 PM Thread Starter
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Re: DIY can be very frustrating (or things I wish I knew first)...

When buying MDF, do NOT buy it if it has a finished or polished feel to it... Wood glue will not adhere to it.
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post #18 of 25 Old 10-18-14, 10:57 PM
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Re: DIY can be very frustrating (or things I wish I knew first)...

Good stuff and thank you
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post #19 of 25 Old 02-04-15, 05:43 PM
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Re: DIY can be very frustrating (or things I wish I knew first)...

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[*]Do not use steel wool if you will be using any water based product to finish the box. Any steel fibers in the finish will start to rust. What may look nice now, will be ugly as the finish starts to look like it's getting chicken pox.
Steel wool fibers in the finish is horrible regardless of what the finish is. It will leave behind a very rough finish that reminds you of bubbles stuck in it or something. Need to make sure it is completely cured before using it then try to clean it off the best you can afterwards. I'm not sure what the best way of doing this is but apparently its pretty important. I got some fibers embedded in some oil based stain and polyurethane, turned out pretty horrible, I'm going to have to redo it sometime.
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post #20 of 25 Old 02-04-15, 05:45 PM
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Re: DIY can be very frustrating (or things I wish I knew first)...

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When buying MDF, do NOT buy it if it has a finished or polished feel to it... Wood glue will not adhere to it.
I usually don't use MDF but I recently got a flat pack for an 88 Special speaker from the DIY Sound Group that seemed smooth and polished. I glued it right up, it feels very strong and solid. They ship flat packs of the stuff all over the place with no complaints. Did you clamp it properly?
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