DIY Speaker Cabinet Design

Written by greg jackson
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DIY Speaker Cabinet Design
A good speaker cabinet design will deliver great sound. (speaker image by Wolszczak from Fotolia.com)

Many people prefer to build their own speaker cabinet. This hands-on project yields satisfying results with a good speaker cabinet design. The job requires some research into acoustic properties of a speaker enclosure and a little preplanning, along with some knowledge of carpentry and soldering.

Skill level:
Easy

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Things you need

  • Tape measure
  • ¾-inch plywood sheets
  • Carpenter’s pencil
  • Table saw or circular saw
  • Speaker
  • Drafting compass
  • Medium-grit sandpaper
  • Wood glue
  • Screwdriver bit
  • 1¼-inch wood screws
  • Jigsaw or sabre saw
  • Speaker wire
  • Wire cutters
  • Wire strippers
  • Soldering gun
  • Resin-core solder
  • Electric drill
  • Drill bit for speaker-mounting bolts
  • 1-inch bolts with T-nuts for mounting speakers
  • ¼-inch drill bit
  • Speaker plug jack
  • Pliers
  • Fine-grit sandpaper

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Instructions

  1. 1

    Lay out the plywood and draw the desired dimension of the enclosure with the tape measure and the carpenter’s pencil. Cut the sections of the speaker cabinet with a table saw or a circular saw.

  2. 2

    Place the speaker on the baffle (front speaker-mounting section) and draw a circle around it with the carpenter’s pencil. Fill in the holes for the speaker-mounting bolts on the baffle with the pencil as well.

  3. 3

    Remove the speaker from the baffle. Draw a second circle inside the first circle. Draw this circle at a distance that is equal to the distance between the bolt holes and the first circle.

  4. 4

    Smooth all cut edges with medium-grit sandpaper. Glue the side sections of the enclosure to the bottom section with the wood glue. Attach the top to this framework with the wood glue as well.

  5. 5

    Glue the baffle to the front of the enclosure. Install the wood screws into all section joints with the drill and the screwdriver bit.

  6. 6

    Cut out the speaker hole in the baffle with the jigsaw or sabre saw. Drill out the bolt holes with the ¼-inch drill bit. Sand down the cuts and holes with the medium-grit sandpaper.

  7. 7

    Cut a length of speaker wire with wire cutters long enough to reach the back of the speaker cabinet from the baffle. Strip off one inch of the insulation from both ends of the wire using wire strippers.

  8. 8

    Cut apart the leads of each end of the speaker wire with the wire cutters to a 1-inch distance. Twist together the strands of each lead to make separate solid wires.

  9. 9

    Attach the leads of one end of the speaker wire to the correct terminals of the speaker using the soldering gun and solder. Feed the wire through the hole in the baffle.

  10. 10

    Mount the speaker to the baffle using bolts and T-nuts, and the drill with a bit that is less than the diameter of the bolts. Run the speaker wire to the back of the enclosure.

  11. 11

    Drill a hole for the speaker jack plug into the middle of the back section using the ¼-inch drill bit. Install the jack plug in this hole and tighten with pliers.

  12. 12

    Solder the remaining leads of the speaker wire to the correct terminals of the jack plug. Mount the back section onto the speaker cabinet with the wood glue and wood screws.

  13. 13

    Sand down the enclosure with fine-grit sandpaper (do not sand the baffle). Stain the speaker cabinet to finish the surface or use paint or the desired speaker cover material.

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