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Ribbon Stripe Mahogany Heresy Speakers 2010

Here's a beautiful looking pair of Heresy speakers with unique grills.

The first thing I did was to make boxes and ship the empty boxes to my customer so he could ship the speakers back to me.  There is 2" of foam surrounding the speakers on all sides and the speakers fit very tightly inside the boxes.  The cardboard is heavy duty, double-wall.

The boxes made it back in pretty good shape, and can be used to send the finished speakers in.

These are "Deocrator" style cabinets, with finished veneer on the fronts of the speakers, instead of grill cloth.  The speaker cabinets were in pretty good condition and only needed a little bit of filling and repair.  They are made of 3/4" birch plywood, including the backs, which are often 1/2" on Heresy speakers.  The owner removed all the components before shipping them.

My customer wanted me to preserve the stickers on the back, so here's a series of photos showing the process I use.  If I just taped over them, I run the risk of having the tape pull pieces of the sticker off when I remove the tape.  So I cut a piece of paper that is just a little bit smaller than the sticker and place that over the sticker first, leaving just a little bit of the edge of the sticker sticking out on each side.  This way the tape only sticks to that little bit of the sticker, and usually it will not pull any of the sticker off.  Sometimes I have to re-glue the sticker down before doing this, and I use contact cement and a Q-tip for that.

Here I have done the initial sanding to remove the clear finish and most of the stain, and I'm repairing a couple of corners that had loose veneer.

Here they are ready for veneer and paint.  I detailed the inside edges of the component cutouts on the front of the speaker, as they will be painted and I want a nice smooth finish there.

I made posterboard cutouts of various grill sizes and layouts and these are the ones my customer chose.

I got a forstner bit to drill out the fronts of the speakers and make holes for the magnets to drop into.

I made a template using mylar, which is easy to mark on, much more durable than paper, and is semi-transparent.  I did the layout of the grills, figured out good locations for the magnets and used an awl to punch holes through into the front of the cabinets.

Then I used 1/8" masonite, cut out the basic grill frames, and sanded them.

Then I used the mylar template to mark the magnet locations on the grill frames.

I cut out the component openings on the mylar, marked the grill frames, and cut them out with a jigsaw.

All edges are sanded and smoothed over.

A little concern about the 1/8" thick material and how close we're cutting the component openings to the edge, but they are strong enough as long as care is taken in handling and storing them.

In these next three pictures, I've installed the magnets into the fronts of the cabinets and used a filler to fill in any gaps, the grill frames are all made, and the magnets are installed with epoxy onto the grill frames.

The grills snap into place with authority.  I managed to get the polarity correct on all of the magnet pairs.  They line up nicely, I only had to make a couple of minor adjustments on the inside cutouts.

Veneer time.

I go the first coat of paint on the grill frames and backs.

One cabinet all veneered.

Grill frames ready for cloth.

Masked and ready for paint on the cutout openings and the back edges.

Showing off the rounded masked corners of the cutouts.  Hmmmm . . . how the heck did he do that?  : )

Paint done, masked the other way for lacquer.  One coat sprayed and plenty of bling bling chatoyance!

I did line up the grain of the veneer perfectly from side to top to side to bottom, but you wouldn't know it by looking at them.  The stripes of the grain change completely once they are turned 90 degrees, so the grain doesn't look like it lines up at all.  Oh well, one of those things with striped veneer like mahogany, sapele, and zebrawood.

I did not take pictures of the two places that I have to repair, I'm just too embarrassed.   Ugggggh!  I sanded through the veneer in two places and it's going to require some patient touch-up work on my part.  Not looking forward to it.   I hope my customer will forgive me.

Grill cloth is done now.  It's awesome how they snap right into place with the magnets hidden behind the veneer.

Here are the final pics.  Please note that the halogen lighting is very bright, and really makes the speakers look more red than they are.

It's hard to capture the chatoyance in pictures, but this one comes close.

I ended up replacing the front veneer on one of these speakers.  Oakwood got me an exact match and it was easier to replace than repair where I sanded through.

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