Sketchup of DIY speaker stands


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Jan 26, 2011
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Edinburgh / Reykjavik
Just messing about in Sketchup - I've never built anything useful so I was thinking of starting with this.. Would like some comments.

The speaker terminal is there just for fun, would be tidy to include them

I was planing on using MDF for the build, and filling the centre stock with sand for added weight, I think that's recommended? The speaker that will be on top is a PSB Image B15
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Hi I built my own speaker stands using solid American White oak, I left the back open for cable management and didn't need to use sand as ballast. I have B&W 601's and they are sturdy enough. Just some food for thought.



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PSB Image B15 -

PSB Speakers - Image B15 Monitor

Size ........... (W x H x D)
Millimeters ... 178 x 343 x 248 mm
Inches ........ 7 x 13 1/2 x 9 3/4"

Placing the speaker on 500mm stands (~20") will place the tweeter at about 32" (813mm). That's pretty good, depending on how far away you are from the speaker. Though perhaps 36" or 38" might be better.

(EDITED: that 36" or 38" total distance, not the stands. The stands would be 24" (600mm) or 26" (660mm) tall. Still if you sit 8ft to 10ft from the speakers, even 32" should be fine. The tweeter fans out at about ±0.3 x distance. So, if you are 10ft from the speaker, the sound has fanned 3ft to the left and right of the center line. [actually the factor is 0.268 x D])

As to adding sand, you want some type of door in the stand so you can add and remove the sand as needed. You could also fill the unused portion of the stand with insulation or foam, to prevent it from acting like a pipe on a pipe organ.

Also, you need to make sure the stands are completely sealed so you don't leak sand, and are braced to take the weight of the sand. This is no big deal those, these are just minor design details.

Overall, if you have the height you want, and the tops and bottoms are large enough to accommodate the speakers and secure the stability of the base, you are golden. Beyond that it is just common sense in the design details.

Personally, rather than speaker terminals on the back of the stand, I would just cut a notch into the back of the cabinet, then cover that notch with a board. In a sense, simply make a channel down the back of the stand to contain the speaker wire. Again, just a minor personal design detail. I'm sure the minor details will all work themselves out in the final design.

Next, do you have woodworking tools? Primarily access to a table saw. If not, you can probably find a cabinet maker who will cut-to-size for you, and then you can take care of the assembly and finishing yourself.

Also, I'm suspecting that KobeoneHD2 might have used standard sized lumber, and merely cut them to length. Consider that for your project. Getting a miter box to accurately and squarely cut wood to length is relatively easy and cheap. Even if you have someone do it for you, it will still be cheap since the cuts will be relatively simple and very few.

Remember when working with MDF, you don't want to breath MDF dust. The wood dust is OK, but the chemical used to glue it all together and treat the wood are mildly toxic. A simply paper dust mask is like sufficient.

Again, other than working out the minor details, you should get very good results from this project.

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Try not too over complicate your design, just make sure they are stable enough to take the weight of the speakers. What size MDF are you planning to use? B&Q can cut this to size for you for free, as long as you have your measurements. Consider how you are going to finish the stands, paint choice etc. Go with blue wizards idea, and create a channel for the wire. I drilled a hole in the centre of the base and then routered a channel for the wire to run out the back.

I'd be more than happy to talk over designs with you for advice. I have built a fair few cabinets and have some experience in cabinetry work.

Oh yeah, Bluewizard, I had to plain and cut my timber to my desired widths, wasn't just a case of cutting to length :)

Good luck with the stands

Steve, Kobe.. Amazing replies!

Steve, how important is it to have heavy stands? If I fill them up with sand - should I completely top the centre stock up or just so that I get a decent weight?

Is there any acoustic difference between solid/heavy stands and lightweight ones?

I'll be doing this project when I get home, I'll post some pics here. I just mentioned MDF since I saw that many people use that, can I get away with using something cheaper?
In an odd twisted sense, when you add sand you are not adding weight, you are adding mass.

Two things are happening, heavy stands represent a lot of mass and inertia for the speaker to over come. Meaning you stands are less likely to vibrate or ring, and are less likely to transfer sound. The second aspect, is the 'pipe organ' effect. If you have a hollow tube, even if you are not blowing air through it, it will still resonate at a certain frequency, as will any hollow chamber including your room, and your house.

Keep in mind that dry sand weighs about 100 pound per cubic foot. From another perspective, dry sand is about 14 standard pounds per gallon (6.4 kg, oddly, roughly one Imperial Stone). Depending on the size of the columns, they could get quite heavy if you fill them.

Depending how you design your columns, you could put the sand into plastic bags, then you could fill the column half full, and fill the rest with fiberglass or poly batting. Again, this is purely dependent on the size, shape, and access to the column structure. Again, the use of fiberglass to prevent the 'pipe organ' effect assume easy access. It is not absolutely necessary.

Don't get too rattled by all this, to some extent, I'm taking it to the extreme.

But do keep in mind the weight of dry sand. Fourteen pounds to the gallon, and a 100 pounds per cubic foot. If you design you columns as you have them in the picture, they are going to be extremely heavy if filled with sand.

Just a few random thoughts.

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From a practical point of view, it's worth noting that MDF is right arse when it comes to painting the exposed edges.

Consider copying the likes of Dynaudio and using a 'sandwich' construction for top and bottom plates - wood/metal : neoprene rubber : wood/metal.


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