Need some soldering help on my Vandy 5A's

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zybar

Need some soldering help on my Vandy 5A's
« on: 3 Oct 2013, 03:16 pm »
I need to replace the 9v batteries that are soldered into the crossovers and high pass filters of my Vandy 5A's.  Since I don't have these skills and really don't want to ship my crossovers and high pass filters out to California to have Vandersteen do this, I am hoping I can find somebody locally to help me out.

Ideally, you would come over to my house (in Holliston), do the soldering, and earn yourself some very nice beer or wine, or whatever you like for your troubles.

If that doesn't entice you...I am fine with paying fro your services in cash.

Any takers?

George

sts9fan

Re: Need some soldering help on my Vandy 5A's
« Reply #1 on: 3 Oct 2013, 04:02 pm »
They solder in the battery?  Do they solder right to the terminal?

kenreau

Re: Need some soldering help on my Vandy 5A's
« Reply #2 on: 3 Oct 2013, 04:47 pm »
A few months ago I had my 5A 9 volt batteries replaced in both locations as well.  They were way past the expiration year (2010?) and actually came appart and leaked.  Ugh!  If you haven't done so already, I suggest reaching out to your regional Vandersteen dealer to see if they have an experienced tech that can do it.  My area did not, so they sent them in to Vandesteen.  I think it was ~$150 plus shipping.  I supplied the batteries as I wanted to use the upgraded Lithium ones.  If you do decide to go Lithium, shop around (internet) and just buy a block of 10 (case?) to save some dough.

If you elect to have someone other than a Vandy tech do them, I suggest really being confident they know what they are doing.  Being able to heat sink the battery terminals while soldering without destroying the batteries, etc. and the tight spots they attach to the xovers is really a job for skilled tech professional, in my humble opinion.

Best of luck
Kenreau

zybar

Re: Need some soldering help on my Vandy 5A's
« Reply #3 on: 3 Oct 2013, 04:57 pm »
They solder in the battery?  Do they solder right to the terminal?

Yep.

Vandersteen says that soldering them in place introduces less noise.   :dunno:

George

zybar

Re: Need some soldering help on my Vandy 5A's
« Reply #4 on: 3 Oct 2013, 04:59 pm »
A few months ago I had my 5A 9 volt batteries replaced in both locations as well.  They were way past the expiration year (2010?) and actually came appart and leaked.  Ugh!  If you haven't done so already, I suggest reaching out to your regional Vandersteen dealer to see if they have an experienced tech that can do it.  My area did not, so they sent them in to Vandesteen.  I think it was ~$150 plus shipping.  I supplied the batteries as I wanted to use the upgraded Lithium ones.  If you do decide to go Lithium, shop around (internet) and just buy a block of 10 (case?) to save some dough.

If you elect to have someone other than a Vandy tech do them, I suggest really being confident they know what they are doing.  Being able to heat sink the battery terminals while soldering without destroying the batteries, etc. and the tight spots they attach to the xovers is really a job for skilled tech professional, in my humble opinion.

Best of luck
Kenreau

The batteries in the crossover are probably as old as yours...hope mine haven't leaked as well. 

I don't have a local dealer, so that isn't an option.

The $150 fee seems high to me, but I will make sure that I am not penny wise and pound foolish.

Did you hear any substantial difference after getting the new batteries in place?

George

kenreau

Re: Need some soldering help on my Vandy 5A's
« Reply #5 on: 3 Oct 2013, 10:12 pm »
I bought my 5As here on AC and they arrived at my door with the batteries in that condition, so I was never able to listen to them initially.  They were not in use and had been stored for a number of years, so it's hard to say when the batteries expired and melted down.  The batteries were so far gone they looked like they exploded.  The mess was so extensive that I had to question if any of the cross over assembly may have been damaged, or shorted something out, etc.  I didn't want to take a chance even attempting to listen to the speakers out of fear they were damaged to some degree and I may need to return them for a refund, insurance claim or similar nightmare...

You do not want to use the speakers with out the xovers working properly - it can ruin drivers, etc and quickly snowball in to really expensive repairs...  In fact, this just reminds me of another tidbit while going through this exercise.  When we shipped the crossovers back to Vandy, we had to pay a premium for insuring just the crossovers for ~$8,000 in the event they were lost or damaged.  If they are lost/damaged, or you do similar harm to the speaker drivers, both speakers have to be sent back to Vandersteen for extensive repairs, anachoic chamber time, critical matching of cross-overs, parts, etc.  Very labor and time intensive, as well as costly with shipping, etc.  I recall hearing it would be a minimum of $5K up to $8K in repairs, depending on what was damaged.

Imho, it was worth the $250 ~$300 (shipping and xtra insurance) to send them back in to Vandesteen for the piece of mind everything was done correctly so they sound their best and work as intended.  The 5As at ~$10K to $15K are a substantial speaker investment to me and I felt it justified to spend the $250 for all those reasons. 

Ciao
Kenreua



The batteries in the crossover are probably as old as yours...hope mine haven't leaked as well. 

I don't have a local dealer, so that isn't an option.

The $150 fee seems high to me, but I will make sure that I am not penny wise and pound foolish.

Did you hear any substantial difference after getting the new batteries in place?

George

ctsooner

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Re: Need some soldering help on my Vandy 5A's
« Reply #6 on: 24 Nov 2013, 08:05 pm »
I would agree that sending them back to Richard to get them done makes the most sense.  That way if anything else needs to be fixed or upgraded, he'll just do it.  They are the BEST to work with. I"m about to purchase the Treo's from Audio Connection in Verona, NJ.  You can call John Rutan the owner, to ask him his thoughts.  He's the BEST to work with. and tells it straight.  Here is a rip from their site with contact info if you haven't already sent them back.

615 Bloomfield Ave. ~ Verona, New Jersey 07044
Phone: 1.973.239.1799 ~ contact@audioconnect.com

Tell JOhn that Pete from CT sent you.  It took me years to find someone I trusted fully in the industry after Ocean State Audio in Prov went out of business. I'm still in touch with Bruce Kutin who was the owner as we became friends.  John in NJ just had Richard Vandersteen in for a day and he has many events on Saturdays.  Nice group down there and worth the 2-3 hr drive I feel.

jtwrace

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Re: Need some soldering help on my Vandy 5A's
« Reply #7 on: 25 Nov 2013, 12:08 am »
I'm pretty sure the OP has had his xovers done.  I'm sure he'll respond.


The only thing that is still very disappointing to me is that Vandy doesn't support 2nd owners models for upgrades.  Personally, that's BS and I would never purchase a brand that was like that. 

zybar

Re: Need some soldering help on my Vandy 5A's
« Reply #8 on: 25 Nov 2013, 12:52 am »
At jtwrace stated, I did have my crossovers and high pass filters updated with fresh lithium batteries.

I had a friend perform the installation for me instead of sending everything to Vandersteen.

While I agree that $250 is a tiny sum compared to the cost of the speakers, it still struck me as too high of a fee for the soldering in 9 batteries.  I know that Vandersteen isn't getting rich performing this service, but the  price just bothered me.

As for Vandersteen not allowing anybody but original owners to upgrade...I agree that it sucks!

That being said, while I truly love my speakers, I don't think I would spend another $11k to upgrade them from 5A to 5A Carbon status. 

George

jtwrace

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Re: Need some soldering help on my Vandy 5A's
« Reply #9 on: 26 Nov 2013, 02:25 pm »
That being said, while I truly love my speakers, I don't think I would spend another $11k to upgrade them from 5A to 5A Carbon status. 

George
So you did upgrade them?  $11k for that service?   :o

zybar

Re: Need some soldering help on my Vandy 5A's
« Reply #10 on: 26 Nov 2013, 02:59 pm »
So you did upgrade them?  $11k for that service?   :o

No, they weren't upgraded.

George

oneinthepipe

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Re: Need some soldering help on my Vandy 5A's
« Reply #11 on: 27 Nov 2013, 01:39 am »
$250.00 doesn't seem outrageous.  I suspect that the procedure could take an hour or two or three, with careful soldering and subsequent crossover testing.  Vandersteen also bears the burden of defective batteries, workmanship, and other snafus.

ctsooner

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Re: Need some soldering help on my Vandy 5A's
« Reply #12 on: 30 Nov 2013, 05:27 am »
I believe Richard is trying to keep original owners from selling his speakers and wants them to be able to keep them and to be able to always upgrade them and not have to worry about changing speakers.  This keeps his speakers off the secondary market and makes them more valuable.  I understand both sides of the argument, but it's just something to keep in mind when buying them second hand only.  I guess since I'll be getting mine first hand, it won't matter so that won't enter into my thinking.