New X-LS Encore build

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mlundy57

New X-LS Encore build
« on: 19 Jan 2019, 09:09 pm »
When I built the last pair of X-LS Encores for a client, I glued up 5 additional pairs of cabinet carcasses. One pair of the extra cabinets was finished the same as the pair for the client, ribbon striped mahogany with a gloss lacquer topcoat.

This pair is being built differently. First, I'm using a wood with a different look, curly Ambrosia maple. It's Ambrosia (a.k.a. ghost or wormy) maple with tiger strip figure. Second, to get away from some of the issues encountered when using commercial backed veneer, where the actual wood is 0.010" thick or less, I'm cutting the solid wood pieces from 8/4 lumber.

I started with a piece of 8/4 rough lumber 11" wide and 8' long. The board had some twist and was wider than my 8" jointer. To flatten it, I made a sled for my 15" planer and cut the board into shorter pieces to minimize the twist. This worked well.

Then it was time to resaw the 8/4 board down to thinner pieces.






After resawing, I planed the pieces to a uniform 5/16" thick. The top piece in the following picture has a crack that needs to be repaired before planing to final thickness. I can't say I'm veneering these cabinets as this is way to thick to be considered a veneer.




One of the pieces had a crack that needed to be repaired. I used a combination of thin and medium CA glue to make the repair.



Then had to use a card scraper to get the piece of tape I used as a backer off before sanding




Next up is gluing the maple on the carcass and flush trimming.






The last piece is clamped up and drying.

Next up is resawing the wood for the front and rear baffles.

The crossovers will be tricked out. In addition to Sonicaps and Mills resistors, I'm using foil inductors and platinum by-pass caps. I'm seriously considering using the flared port that is used in the N1X. I have used that port before on a pair of X-LS Encores and liked it.

I haven't decided how I'm going to finish these yet.

Mike

grimace

Re: New X-LS Encore build
« Reply #1 on: 20 Jan 2019, 02:08 am »
Nice - love the figure on the side in that last picture.  Keep posting on this build please.

lacro

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Re: New X-LS Encore build
« Reply #2 on: 20 Jan 2019, 02:35 pm »
Mike,
Nice work as usual! You sure have some quality tools, love that pile of Bessey clamps. Food for thought: Since you have more cabinets why not build a powered pair with one of your Folsom amps inside?

Plund

Re: New X-LS Encore build
« Reply #3 on: 21 Jan 2019, 04:41 am »
I look forward to seeing how the tiger figure "Pops" when you get some finish on it.  Hopefully the camera pic will be able to capture most of the beauty.

mlundy57

Re: New X-LS Encore build
« Reply #4 on: 21 Jan 2019, 05:46 am »
Will do.

Larry,

I got lucky a few years ago. Lowe’s was discontinuing Bessy clamps and the were blowing them out dirt cheap so I picked up a couple dozen.

As for active speakers, I’m not a fan. If somebody commissioned a pair I’d build them but not for myself, too limiting.

mlundy57

Re: New X-LS Encore build
« Reply #5 on: 21 Jan 2019, 05:55 am »
I look forward to seeing how the tiger figure "Pops" when you get some finish on it.  Hopefully the camera pic will be able to capture most of the beauty.

I’m not sure how much the figure is going to pop on these. The spalting is pretty extensive resulting in a darker color in the harder wood than maple usually has.  This will significantly reduce the contrast you would normally get with tiger maple. I can’t be sure until I make up some samples but I’m thinking this wood is going to look best leaving the figure light for contrast and shimmer.

I’ll experiment on some scrap pieces to see what I like best
« Last Edit: 13 Feb 2019, 04:44 pm by mlundy57 »

kwhitman

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Re: New X-LS Encore build
« Reply #6 on: 12 Feb 2019, 06:53 pm »
I was thinking of doing something similar.  Thank you for posting this.  I love the real wood exterior so I assume the front and back panels will be solid wood?

Kris

mlundy57

Re: New X-LS Encore build
« Reply #7 on: 13 Feb 2019, 05:03 pm »
I was thinking of doing something similar.  Thank you for posting this.  I love the real wood exterior so I assume the front and back panels will be solid wood?

Kris

Kris,

In this case the front and rear baffles will be solid wood but out of necessity, not choice. Solid wood is not ideal as it is going to add some coloration to the sound. I don't know how it will turn out. I have mitigated it some on the rear baffle by using NoRez but it will still not be as dead as MDF with NoRez. I can't do anything on the front baffle.

The reason I had to use solid wood is that the cabinet carcasses were already made up to the plans with 3/4" MDF. This presented a number of issues with where the seams of the spalted maple would be, how they would be oriented, and what would show after the edges had been rounded over.

Ideally I would have preferred to laminate the baffles with a combination of MDF and solid wood. To do that and still have a thick enough piece of solid wood on the baffles for the roundover, the cabinets would have to be deeper than the plans call for. This way the MDF portion could be recessed inside the cabinet and still have the proper internal volume.

That might not completely eliminate added coloration from the front baffle since the drivers will be mounted to the solid wood, but it should reduce it considerably.

Mike

Danny Richie

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Re: New X-LS Encore build
« Reply #8 on: 13 Feb 2019, 06:06 pm »
Man, those look good.

mlundy57

Re: New X-LS Encore build
« Reply #9 on: 27 Apr 2019, 11:05 pm »
Been a long time for an update but here you go.

Some pics of the finished cabinets:












Here are the crossovers. These have been pretty much maxed out. I took them a step beyond what Shawn did with his Skiing Ninga crossovers that won the Stereo Mojo small speaker shootout. They have Sonicaps, Mills resistors, Alpha-core foil inductors, and the step above is Platinum by-pass caps in the tweeter circuits and Miflex KPCU by-pass caps in the woofer circuits.








Here are some of the completed speakers






And finally up and playing




They only have 4 hours burn-in on them at this time.

Mike


Danny Richie

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Re: New X-LS Encore build
« Reply #10 on: 28 Apr 2019, 09:54 pm »
Wow!

lacro

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Re: New X-LS Encore build
« Reply #11 on: 28 Apr 2019, 10:09 pm »
Lost for words!!  :drool:

mlundy57

Re: New X-LS Encore build
« Reply #12 on: 28 Apr 2019, 10:14 pm »
I’ll be bringing these with me to Lone Star also. I think they look better in person than my iPhone photography shows.

They have about 24 hours on them at this point and the bass is beginning to sound a lot better. Still a ways to go but bass extension is improving.


nature boy

Re: New X-LS Encore build
« Reply #13 on: 28 Apr 2019, 10:55 pm »
Beautiful build Mike. Congratulations!

NB

Folsom

Re: New X-LS Encore build
« Reply #14 on: 29 Apr 2019, 12:48 am »
Nice!

Plund

Re: New X-LS Encore build
« Reply #15 on: 29 Apr 2019, 03:30 am »
Mike,  very nicely done finish on unique, interesting grained wood... I like!  What is the finish?

Pete

mlundy57

Re: New X-LS Encore build
« Reply #16 on: 29 Apr 2019, 03:49 am »
Mike,  very nicely done finish on unique, interesting grained wood... I like!  What is the finish?

Pete

Pete,

It’s General Finishes Arm-R-Seal, gloss. This is a wipe on varnish which I diluted 50% with mineral spirits. This helped it go on smoother but required more coats.

Finally I applied Renaissance wax.

Mike

S Clark

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Re: New X-LS Encore build
« Reply #17 on: 29 Apr 2019, 04:04 am »
Wow.  You are really turning out beautiful stuff. 

mlundy57

Re: New X-LS Encore build
« Reply #18 on: 29 Apr 2019, 02:10 pm »
Scott,

Thanks

Mike

ebag4

Re: New X-LS Encore build
« Reply #19 on: 2 May 2019, 03:00 am »
Wow.  You are really turning out beautiful stuff.
X2. 

Really nice Mike.

Best,
Ed