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Discussion Starter #1
Through a stroke of bad luck that is a little more like good luck, my current DIY subwoofer has taken on some water damage and needs to be rebuilt. This this the bad luck. The good luck is that my insurance adjust wants to know the commercial value of this sub. Meaning, what it would cost to go buy one like it. It is a 4.5 cu. foot Adire Audio Tempest with a Keiga 1200 watt plate amp. Its sealed and finished with veneer and stained. I'm not sure what is out there that competes. I know the Velodyne DD 15 has about the same specs as far as power, but the driver and electronics are a higher quality. Below that is a bunch of ported 15's and the Dayton 15" kit for $900 that you cannot pick up in a store. Any ideas. I know that I have $800 or so in parts and quite a bit of labor time in that. I dont want to rip off the insurance company and suggest that my sub is worth the $2400 of that Velodyne DD 15 but I dont want to short change myself either. Any suggestions?

The second question, is what next? I have a working ~1000-1200 watt plate amp and I want to replace this subwoofer. The original sub is ok, but I get a little worried during some movies that I am going to look over and that my too big amp will have torn apart the Tempest. Since I'm probably going to get some free $$ I might as well "reinvest." Ive been out of the subwoofer game for a while. I've looked at what exodus has out there now and l like what I see. I was thinking 18" or even that 21" if I can manage the box size and I can come up with a box and alignment to use the 1200 watts of my amp and not have a driver that is only being half utilized. I'm good with PR's and sealed. I dont want massive boxes, etc. I know that smaller sealed means more power is necessary. I can be creative with box building and make something that blends a little better than a black cube, but I just dont want to move a 250 lb box. Does anyone have experience with using the Maelstrom-X 18" or the 21" with this kind of power? I don't want to replace this amp and I don't want to waste money on drivers and PR's that will not get used to their fullest potential with this amp. I know that even the tempest-X will give me more output, but I was hoping for a bigger jump than keeping with the same 15" size. Any thoughts or suggestions? The price tag of the 21" does not bother me so much as just not making good use it. I have not made time to model things yet, I'm busy moving stuff to storage so a contractor clean up the rest of the mess.

Any help is appreciated.

Thanks
 

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The best answer is to take your effort and multiply by your pay rate and add it to the depreciated costs of the amp and driver.

For example if it took you 8 hours to build and you make 10 an hour. Then it would be 80 + amp + driver.

For each night of work I'd estimate 4 hours and for each day I'd estimate 8 hours. Now don't go overboard with your time value. You will know what's reasonable. I'd only include building time since it's a reasonable thing to argue.
 

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On your 2nd question your sub is rated at 1000watts and Kevin is known to be conservative. Couple that with the fact that most plate amps don't deliver their rating and I'd say you were fine.

The Tempest can take what you give it I'm sure. What's your current box?
 

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Minimum value of labor per hour billable is $20. I own a fabrication business and that is without a doubt fair in the scheme of things. Construction laborers (just broom pushers) bring $45 per hour to insurance work. Dont short change yourself at all. Those jerks do not cut us ANY slack. Dont saw them off at the knees, but be fair to yourself.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks for the quick reply, though it was not exactly what I was looking for on the estimate. I was looking for a commercially sold sub that was on par with my custom sub. It turns out that the adjuster is not so picky and that $1300 seemed fair. Sort of in between the $2300 Velodyne and some of the $900 ported 15's out there now. I think I had about $900 in materials at the time and who know how much labor. I was a little slow at cutting things and there were several coats applied to the veneer.

Hmm, size. I need to measure some furniture. I was thinking I could make a larger sub if I disguise it as an old radio or something crafty like that. If I go the standard sub cube route, I think I could live with ~5-6 cu ft. I had one that big before. Now that I have some stuff taken care of I will do some modeling too. I think I still have an old program laying around. Its a big game of balancing response with size, etc. I've just been away for so long. I was just suprised to see so many people using 2000w+ pro amps with these 18" and 21" woofers that only say they can handle 1500 watts. I figured my amp was just a couple hundred watts short from what these drivers could electrically handle. I guess not. Anyway suggestions are still open in the 5 cu ft area. Thanks again.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
On your 2nd question your sub is rated at 1000watts and Kevin is known to be conservative. Couple that with the fact that most plate amps don't deliver their rating and I'd say you were fine.

The Tempest can take what you give it I'm sure. What's your current box?
Current box is 3.2 cu foot. The tempest CANNOT handle the plate amp power provided with this alignment. Its the old tempest which comes in at 600 watts. In this application it is excursion limited at just about every frequency that I ask the sub to play. I'm not so sure about that plate amp not being able to put out that power either. The transformer in it is massive (1900VA) and the size of the caps line up with what is necessary to keep a class D amp happy with that amount of power. But, I have never seen or heard of anyone putting this thing on the bench. It still sells on madisound I believe for about $550. Who knows.

Anyway, the CCS solution looks cool and compact enough. Is there a suggestion for where to apply a subsonic filter for that?

Are there any suggested modeling programs that will let me play with some things for free?

Thanks guys!!
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Minimum value of labor per hour billable is $20. I own a fabrication business and that is without a doubt fair in the scheme of things. Construction laborers (just broom pushers) bring $45 per hour to insurance work. Dont short change yourself at all. Those moos do not cut us ANY slack. Dont saw them off at the knees, but be fair to yourself.
I just said $1300. If I short changed myself then I could say that building this stuff is a labor of love to keep my mind happy.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Thanks, its coming back to me now. I remember using this. It got me through three subs and a set of main speakers. Its been a couple years and a couple women since I've done this stuff. No wonder I don't remember.
 

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Yeah $20 is about right. The insurance adjuster also said to claim hours I worked to remove the water from my basement and I would be compensated. I have NO idea what they are going to pay per hour, but I really hope its what I get paid at work. They never did ask. What a disaster.
 

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$20 is way too low. For custom design and build work, I charge $65/hr and would not cost my time any less than that for an estimate. Regardless, sounds like you are happy with your settlement. Have fun building your next project!
 

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That is much more money that I will sink back in. I get to keep the amp and I'm selling the 15" to a friend for a few bucks. I figure on putting half in pocket and half to the new build. I have a lot of days off over xmas and new years, so its something to do.
 

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$20 is way too low. For custom design and build work, I charge $65/hr and would not cost my time any less than that for an estimate. Regardless, sounds like you are happy with your settlement. Have fun building your next project!
Not talking about a billable amount to a customer. Its a whole different situation when its something you do at will for yourself. I charge $85 an hour up to $200 per hour for myself on a specialty jobsite, but you cant compare the 2. If my handmade polished steel desk downstairs was stolen I dont know what the hell I would tell insurance. "Yeah so I have $40 in leftover steel from a job and about 100 man hours in it". That would be funny to hit them with a workorder for $8,000.00 or so. Ha ha.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
I think this is the reason that the adjuster asked for the commercial value, i.e. what a sub would cost at a store that had similar performance. Also a complicated question. I just spat out something reasonable that allowed me to replace the parts and compensate me for some of the aggravation of building it. Its not all aggravation because I do enjoy some of the building process. There were some antiques that are 100 years old that were spared from the water. My mother values this stuff as pricesless, but I value them whatever the highest bidder would pay me for them.
 

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I say $1500. A HSU ULS15 is similar enough. Sealed 15" and 1000w amp.

I vote Mal-X 21" in a 10 cu ft sealed enclosure with your 1200w amp. More than double the cone area should provide a nice efficiency boost and all of that extra displacement should keep things clean.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
I was between the 18 and 21. The box sizes are a little too much, but I may have a way to make it "blend". I was thinking of going to a goodwill or this used furniture store here and buying a decent piece of furniture that I can clean up. Then gut it. Line the inside with MDF and glue whatever doors and drawers its has with some construction glues. Brace it up and down fire whatever driver I find. I bet I can find a decent 3-drawer chest that would work out to around 10 cu. ft. I just got to make a way that the handles do not rattle. I had a 6 cu ft box before and even I didnt like it. Yeah, I'm ashamed to admit it.
 
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