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My "new" Sansui SP-2000

Discussion in 'Exclusively Sansui' started by danbiba, Mar 22, 2015.

  1. danbiba

    danbiba New Member

    Messages:
    40
    Hey guys, picked up a set of SP-2000 s on Cl today. I'm super happy with the way they look, a little dinged up, but I think they're beautiful. I'm happy with how they sound, a little more bass than I'm use to but over all I'm happy. Currently have them hooked up to my Pioneer Sx-636. Other than a few cosmetic changes at some point I wanna open these things up and do a recap at least. Any pointers on what I should replace and what I should upgrade? uploadfromtaptalk1427077942512.jpg uploadfromtaptalk1427077963942.jpg
     

     

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  2. krowmagnum

    krowmagnum Compulsive speaker freak

    Messages:
    2,630
    Location:
    Space Coast FL
    Cool find. :thmbsp:

    Try rolling up a towel and shove it in that port to tame the bass. Try it for a while and you might prefer it. Normally I would say roll up a sock to close the port in a speaker but the SP-2000's have what I call a fisting port. :D
     
  3. Tinnkindling

    Tinnkindling OLD SCHOOL

    Messages:
    729
    Fisting port! Grinning!!!
     
  4. Daunia 70

    Daunia 70 Lunatic Member

    Messages:
    12,584
    Location:
    Britain
    Nice lookin' speakers... congrats!
     
  5. bluesky

    bluesky Addicted Member

    Messages:
    7,606
    On AK Sansui "Search this thread" there is a massive write-up on recapping SP-2000 with Dayton caps - caps which everyone seem to say that Daytons keep the correct 'voiceing'. I've tried to find the thread myself but am having problems finding it. I do have it in my notes but they are all written in MS Works... a lot of good that does. It's a nightmare.

    I need to rebuild my SP-2000 crossovers myself but no hurry, mine still sound fine. Unreal... 45 year old caps. ???
     
    Last edited: Mar 23, 2015
  6. super98lsc

    super98lsc Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    983
    I used the Dayton caps on one pair of my SP-2000s they sound nice. Notable difference even though they sounded decent beforehand.s
    Nice find, they look like they are in really nice shape. The woofers last a long time on the 2000s unlike the SP-3500 which gets stiff with age.
     

     

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  7. danbiba

    danbiba New Member

    Messages:
    40
    Ha, yea I keep hearing about this post, but I can't seem to find it anywhere....I've never done a crossover before....I'd like to find it so I know what I'm doing.
     
  8. bluesky

    bluesky Addicted Member

    Messages:
    7,606
    I'll try to find the data. I'm just BBB (busy beyond belief) at the moment. Right in the middle of a few large projects.

    I haven't ever done any crossover work myself. The only problem is fitting & securing the newer larger caps on the board. Gotta have a plan, and a glue gun. Some guys tie strap them on too.
     
    Last edited: Mar 23, 2015
  9. super98lsc

    super98lsc Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    983
    I have one the of X-overs out of my sp2000s I was using it for a test/reference board a few weeks ago and have not re-installed it yet. I can take some shots tonight and upload the cap values I used.
     
  10. danbiba

    danbiba New Member

    Messages:
    40
    That would be awesome!
     
  11. bluesky

    bluesky Addicted Member

    Messages:
    7,606
    OK... here we go.

    Here is the SP-2000 capicator data by rek50...and other person's comments. This is a good primer I put together for me on SP-2000 (and you could use it for other Sansui speakers too, Hope This Helps. Have fun!:


    -----

    rek50 helped me a lot. Definitely take his advice on which caps to buy (CAPS BELOW) if you decide to recap them. I used the same Dayton and AudioCap Theta combination he recommends and I couldn't be happier. Very smooth sounds.
    See below list.

    Here is the complete shopping list for SP-2000 rebuilds: Parts from parts express.
    http://www.partsexpress.com. It only took 3 days for the caps to arrive.
    (another alternative company: http://www.oaktreeent.com/Stereo_Pa...lvage_Units.htm)

    SoundKing 14 gauge wire

    # Part……Part Description .................................................................................. Unit Price
    1 027-406 DAYTON DMPC-0.47 .47uF-250V POLYPROPYLENE CAPACITOR $0.83
    1 027-415 DAYTON DMPC-2.2 2.2uF-250V POLYPROPYLENE CAPACITOR $1.54
    1 027-420 DAYTON DMPC-3.3 3.3uF-250V POLYPROPYLENE CAPACITOR $1.77
    2 027-421 DAYTON DMPC-4.0 4.0uF-250V POLYPROPYLENE CAPACITOR $1.85
    1 027-436 DAYTON DMPC-20 20uF-250V POLYPROPYLENE CAPACITOR $4.95
    1 027-414 DAYTON DMPC-2.0 2.0uF-250V POLYPROPYLENE CAPACITOR $1.52
    1 260-302 GOLD PLATED SPEAKER TERMINAL $2.95
    5 027-700 AUDIOCAP PPT THETA .010uF-600V FILM/FOIL CAPACITOR $3.22


    Note especially the 2 4uF to replace the original 8uF, and the 20 + 2uF to replace the original 22uF (you could probably go with an 8.2uF and a 20uF alone and have little effect on the sound, but I was trying to remain true to the original specs as much as possible). The pictures above depict a 10uF + 12uF combo across the woofer terminals, and I think the new configuration will be a smaller footprint overall.

    Short List, names of caps only:These are the capacitors required for the SP-2000s:
    0.47uF

    22uF (I used a 10uF in parallel with a 12uF, but they're both so huge that I've moved to 20uF || 2uF)

    8uF (I used 4uF || 4uF; you could buy 8.2uF and not change the frequency behavior too much)

    3.3uF

    2.2uF
    ---

    Also, the nice binding posts (part # 260-302) are a good addition, while you've got the soldering gun out.
    ---

    rek50 suggests getting a couple of extra boards to attach to the sides in order to fit all the caps on, but I was able to wedge them onboard by stacking them and using glue to hold the stacked ones in place. His method is surely safer, long term.

    Recap with Daytons & AudioThetas and . Order from partsexpress. Shipping and handling was expensive so order all your stuff at once. It can be a bit on the pricey side, but in my opinion it was worth it. I had several drivers which seemed nonfunctional but when recapped they lit up just fine and the drivers which had previously seemed murky are now bright.

    I have a great looking pair of speakers that sounded awful until I replaced the crossover caps. Mine had the overpowering booming muddy bass made them un-listenable prior to replacing the caps. Using decent capacitors with bypass caps tamed the booming bass and smoothed out the mid-range and the high end. It' not difficult to replace caps and it is well worth the time, effort, and the few dollars that it will cost. If you do decide to do it, a hot-melt glue gun will come in very handy.

    My speakers had both super tweeters inoperable until I replaced the caps on them, then they worked fine. Note: I've had tweeters dead as well so check your tweeters. The midranges and woofers were all in good shape.

    The important thing to remember here is restoring the original ESR will result in restoring the original SPL output of the tweeter. That can happen with most any type of cap.

    From someone: I would use Dayton 5% tolerance types


    ---

    Statements on rebuilding the crossovers.
    1. If you're out of practice on soldering I recommend doing the super tweeter cap first (0.47uF in parallel with one of the AudioCap Thetas at 0.01uF), because it's easy to reach and reassemble. The more challenging ones are the 3.3 and 8uF caps, because they're centrally located in the midst of several coils and directly wired to the binding post. Save those for when you have more confidence at first, but do them first on the second speaker, as they're the biggest pain and you will be happy to have them out of the way.

    2. When doing these, I highly recommend replacing the wire which they join on the binding post; if you clip it to detach it from the old binding post, there will only barely be enough length to reattach it to the new binding post. rek50 recommends SoundKing 14 guage wire, but I didn't have any and so I soldered them to the cap wires instead of the binding post. It will work, but it's not pretty. Be pretty, and rewire instead.

    3. I made it a habit to measure continuity across the joint with an ohmmeter after every solder, to ensure that I hadn't screwed up too badly. I suggest keeping that habit, at least.

    4.
    a. Make sure all the drivers (screws) are tight.
    b. Take off the rear panel and shoot some DeoxiT on the clear/natural/soft control contacts
    c. Optional: Reduce that whopper port size to about a 3.125" ID X 8" long. Wrap some fiberglass pipe insulation (yellow, 2" wide, Home Depot) around the OD of the OEM port tube, to "Regain" some cabinet volume.
    d. Give it a listen WITHOUT the lattice grills on and you may decide to replace them with a "Cloth or Foam" grill

    5. If you are placing them on carpet then a base with spikes to couple it to the floor also tightens and improves the base.

    DID IT MAKE A DIFFERENCE?
    All the difference in the world. The midranges and tweeters were murky, and on one speaker the super-tweeter wasn't firing at all. Now everything's tight and crisp.


    Other statements by other persons:

    The level controls on my speakers didn't work. I sprayed Deoxit on them and now the controls work fine.

    Unfortunately Sansui speakers lack any real bass below about 60 Hz. Japanese sound. Mids and tweets "should" be smooth and mellow.

    Statement: I don't need the "brighter" treble that comes with polys or film types.

    ---
    It is pretty straight forward. I just used a hot glue gun to glue them to the board. Replace the electrolytics with polypropelene. They will be larger than the electros, but they will still fit on the board.

    Check out a pic of the SP-2000 crossover I finished. http://www.audiokarma.org/forums/showthread.php?t=67071
    The sound difference is like night and day after the re-cap.

    After a couple of weekends I finally finished the SP-2000's. All caps were replaced with polypro caps bypassed with .22 film & foils. The ports on the SP-2000's were reduced using a carpet roll tube then wrapped once with carpet padding. Perfect fit. I replaced all of the heavy mesh grill backing with some nice breathable cloth of a burgandy color. Then I used some 3/4" wide X 3/16" thick foam weatherseal before replacing the back panels to seal them up.

    Speaker sound not good: you could always try stuffing more fiberglass or polyfill damping. You could also stuff a sock in the port (might need a few socks, those are big ports) Make sure that loudness is not on, it will make these speakers too boomy. The dull sounding could also be the midrange drivers not working, you will need to clean the switches.

    From other guy…not Sansui. Question: Please explain why you doubled the caps instead of just using one of the value you want.
    Answer: Sometimes you can't get the value you want, or the cost of two common values are much cheaper than one cap of the desired value. In these instances you combine the values of two caps by configuring them in parallel.

    Statement: I noticed 2-4mF used for an 8mF. Is there much of a difference if I use an 8.2mF? They also make a 3.9 in stead of a 4mF.
    Answer: 8.2uf is so close to 8.0uf.....that there is virtually.....no difference.
    -----

    The battery trick test:

    You can safely test the speakers with a AA 1.5 volt battery. connect a couple of wires to the battery and brush the wires across the speaker terminals, a good speaker will emit a click, if you get nothing the speaker is dead.

    Plus, you can use the battery trick to determine polarity if you lose track of the terminals. If you connect polarity correctly, the woofer should jump forward, towards the listener and vice versa.
    -----

    Take MANY closeup Photos, from different angles, of the crossovers before you start the project!!!

    Draw crossovers and wiring blueprints: DO NOT ALTER THE CURRENT!!! Lorne

    If stuffing is fiberglass, be careful of fiberglass stuffing. Wear Gloves.
    A paper shopping bag is large enough to hold the stuffing for one speaker.
    Label the wiring (for speaker, W/R, +/-, location)

    1. Dioxit wafer/L-pads. Test speakers for muddy sound. Use Q-tips with Dioxit. Such switches allow you to adjust the speaker voicing to different rooms. There are no L-pads, but rather wafer switches that switch in different circuits for the MF and HF drivers, they will have contacts that you spray Deoxit onto each of the three and then you rotate them about 20 times. A recap is a good idea but it's likely the wafer switches. Spray some Deoxit in the contacts there and switch it back and forth. Cured it on mine.
    2. Dexoit - Spray into the hole in the side/top of the potentiometer and manually turn the wiper by operating the control knob back and forth several times to clean. With switches just spray the contacts and operate the switch several times. BTW, operate with the power OFF during this operation.
     
    Last edited: Mar 25, 2015
    grey_beard likes this.

     

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  12. bluesky

    bluesky Addicted Member

    Messages:
    7,606
    Test speakers to see if this solved the problem. Listen to each speaker (Paul)
    Test the speakers for functions:

    SirBird:
    1. there are no L-pads, but rather wafer switches that switch in different circuits for the MF and HF drivers, they will have contacts that you spray deoxit onto each of the three and then you rotate them about 20 times.

    2. take the tweeters out of circuit (remove one of the leads either from the tweeter or from where it connects to the crossover. Measuring it with a DMM (digital multimeter) set to 20 ohms you should measure somewhere from 6-14 ohms. Infinite ohms is not good, neither is less than 2 ohms or so (should be 8 or 16 ohm nominal drivers)

    You can safely test the speakers with a AA 1.5 volt battery. connect a couple of wires to the battery and brush the wires across the speaker terminals, a good speaker will emit a click, if you get nothing the speaker is dead.

    when I frequent the thrifts looking at speakers I always carry along a AAA battery and a small piece of bell wire.

    Plus, you can use the battery trick to determine polarity if you lose track of the terminals. If you connect polarity correctly, the woofer should jump forward, towards the listener and vice versa.

    3. The capacitors could stand to be replaced. I would use Dayton 5% tolerance types available from partsexpress.com

    4. It could be placement, also, try listening without the grills on. If that doesn't work, you could always try stuffing more fiberglass or polyfill damping. You could also stuff a sock in the port (might need a few socks, those are big ports) Make sure that loudness is not on, it will make these speakers too boomy.
    The dull sounding could also be the midrange drivers not working, you will need to clean the switches.

    Measure the DC resistance off of the + and - terminals on the tweeters, they might just be dead.

    Tested them with a 1.5v battery and they buzz, there is also resistance, so may be bad caps on the tweeter circuit.

    I tested the tweeters with a sine sweep file provided by spkrdood.
    Another guy: Not Sansui speakers:
    Tweeters: unsolder the leads. Take the tweeters out of circuit (remove one of the leads either from the tweeter or from where it connects to the crossover. Measuring it with a DMM (digital multimeter) set to 20 ohms you should measure somewhere from 6-14 ohms. Infinite ohms is not good, neither is less than 2 ohms or so (should be 8 or 16 ohm nominal drivers)
    I tested mine out with a sine sweep file provided by spkrdood.
    Make sure you put a 10MF cap in series with the positive lead of the tweeter to block the lower frequencies.

    I have already cleaned and lubed the switches with Deoxit and F5 fader lube. They are smoother now but still no sound from the tweeters. Do these caps boost a charge to power the 16 ohm speakers? I connected a 4 ohm surround speaker to the negative terminal and the other to the Super tweeter positive soldered terminal and it worked...Hmmmm

    Archibael
    1. How to test super tweeters: When tested, my speakers are fine except for the supertweeters (which I've verified is a crossover problem, as when I bypass the stock supertweet cap with a brand new Dayton, the supertweet lights up).

    Tweeter and midrange problem:
    The tweeters and midranges have an issue where one "paired" midrange or tweeter is silent while the other is driven. I haven't completely disconnected them to ohm them out yet but is it possible that could be a crossover problem as well? It doesn't make sense to me, as they're wired in parallel.

    Take the speakers out. Mark top so you know which way was ‘up’.

    Remagnitise the magnets?? Good idea if project works out fine.

    Clean cabinets:
    1. The grills and L-pad controls were dirty. I spent over 2hrs. each cleaning them up. Used a can of air to blow them off some then used a soft paintbrush to brush away the years of dust buildup on all the drivers. Blew out the crossovers and cleaned the L-Pad controls with Deoxit. Tested all of the drivers and to my surprise everything works in both cabs.

    2. Cloth grills: They were in perfect shape, so instead of replacing the grill cloth, I used a fabric cleaner to freshen them up. Screw the logo back in place and you are DONE!
    Use: Woolite Foam Cleaner…Fabric & Upholstery with FibraPure Order Eliminator - Stain remover and fabric refresher.

    3. Clean speakers: Brush insides of speakers with a soft paint brush. I'd try dry at first and see what shakes loose' You can always "Step it up", if dry won't cut it, BUT be careful not to make it too wet, or you could end up with a "Dust-Mud" that won't leave. I remember using some stuff called "Scum-X" (I think that was the name) to clean up my Drawings (Drafting/Mechanical Drawing). It was some fine grain "Art Gum" eraser material. Maybe shread (use fine file) an art gum eraser and dust the dirty cone with it. Work it around with a dry brush and see if it will lift the dirt.

    4. The additional step was using a latex caulk to seal all the interior seams of the cabinet. Use nitrile gloves and a finger to get to the hard places, and check with a mirror. Also sealed the edges of the aluminum back plate. I used a double stick glazing tape 1/16x3/8 for the woofer seal, but didn't remove the non-stick backer, so it's still easy to take out in the future.
     
    Last edited: Mar 25, 2015
  13. bluesky

    bluesky Addicted Member

    Messages:
    7,606
    Rebuild internals
    Capacitors: It does not matter at all which way you connect the Sonicaps. After all, all signals in a crossover are AC. Not possible for any capacitor used there to have a polarity since all signals in there alternate between + and -. All electrolytic types have a more limited capacity for optimum performance than do other constructions. But, they have very definite advantages, such as price and relative compactness of size.
    The electroytic paste which makes up the electrolyte in the cap is made effective by a polarized DC current. Without this environment, the optimal performance of capacitors in crossover circuits of speakers have a foreshortened life expectancy. They may exhibit some effectiveness way past their useful, optimal life. And so old speakers may belt out the sound; nevertheless many users report huge benefits after substituting new caps for old.

    The muted mid/high might be caused by dirty rotary controls, or blown drivers.
    4. Check each one (DCR-ohms resistance as measured with an ohm meter).
    The Tweets might be cooked, as in zero ohms reading.

    Recap crossovers: For sure they sounded different, but you won't really get the "Full Picture" till Both X/Os are "Burned In". Enjoy the "Mod" journey.

    After you have recapped the X/Os, they may sound too "Bright". Let the caps "Burn In" for a couple of weeks use, before passing final judgement. Usually they'll "Smooth" out some.
    7. my partsexpress order has included Deoxit as well as the binding posts.
    8. Dioxit the L-pads cause this could cause the mids (etc.) to go out.
    9. If your speaker is not responding to the L-pad rotation, it's either *really* dirty or it's begging for a crossover recap.

    Binding posts (to L-pads) It's a real good idea to replace those speaker terminals, it's easy and not expensive and you'll hear smoother/clearer sound. It’s a good idea to place plastic washers between the binding post and the aluminum chassis if they are touching. Without the plastic washers everything can short out, on KLH speakers. Watch this carefully! The back plate that holds the speaker terminals and toggle switch is aluminum. I installed new 5-way binding posts. Forgot to insulate these from the aluminum plate the on the first speaker and got not output when I tested it. The plate was short circuiting the signal.
    Had to take the post out, wrap it in electrical tape, then reintall with a rubber washer next to the aluminum plate on both sides. Works fine now.

    JBL’s tweeter bypass cap:
    Question: "You might also ask him about the use of a "by-pass" (.015uF or so) capacitor in the network as JBL used it successfully. It was supposed to allow the ultra high freq (+15k) to pass more easily to the tweeter instead of trying to push it all through one big cap."

    Answer: Yes. All electrolytic caps of any size have some inherent inductance as well. As the frequency goes higher, it is possible that the capacitor will actually pass thru resonance and become inductive. Generally, if good high quality caps are used, the resonant frequency will be high enough (for audio frequencies up to 20-25kHz) that is not an issue. If there is concern, bypassing the electrolytic with a 0.1uf or so cap will ‘ensure’ that very high frequencies will still get to the tweeter as they should.

    The credit for using Daytons bypassed with Thetas goes to a Network Guru "Giskard" over at Lansing Heritage. He's Mr. JBL, but his ideas are not limited to just JBL products, but rather sound network theory and practice. They should sound "Sweeter" after more time has passed for "Burn-in" (The Alchemy of the molecules of the caps "Settling in, or however the story goes). As long as we are having fun

    Question: So each of these Dayton value combinations has a Theta 'piggybacking' in parallel?
    Answer: Yes, the film-and-foil Thetas at 0.01uF in parallel with each cap or each set of caps gives better response for transients without adding a significant capacitance which would affect which frequencies get filtered at the crossovers.

    The first speaker I tried without the F & F's and there was improvement over the origional caps. I then added the F & F's and what a dramatic difference in the sound. The mids & highs lit right up. The other speaker sounded muddy and lifeless compared to the completed one.

    I also will attest to the "bypass effect". I built some 3-ways with 12" Daytons, Vifa mids and Morel highs. Tried them first with just Dayton metal/poly caps, then bypassed those with .01uF AudioCap Theta F&F's and, as you say, they lit right up! Those little AudioCaps really made them stand out! Wouldn't have believed it if I hadn't tried it myself.

    I also recommend using a "bypass" cap with the tweeter cap to help clean up the upper harmonics. That is a low value (like a .22 ufd poly or mylar) wired in parallel with the tweeter cap. It's an old JBL trick I learned.

    Archibael
    AudioCap Thetas in the 0.01 uF range are currently out of stock-- I asked for 10.
    ---

    With gloves on: put fiberglass back in.

    Install the speakers. Make darn sure that you rewire the speakers exactly as they were before you took them out. (IE. So the phase is correct)
    Solder and wirecap the tweeter leads, and put it back in it's place,
    Solder mids and woofers.

    Close up everything

    Test

    Let your new caps settle in for a while if it sounds ‘bright‘.
    Leave them on for a few days playing FM at a low volume. Good Idea!!


    Order parts:
    electrolytics at Parts Express: http://www.partsexpress.com/webpage....&WebPage_ID=72

    I like both of these www.partsexpress.com and www.digikey.com. I have great experience with both.

    New speakers (if necessary)
    Capacitors from Parts Express (and JBL type harmonic cap?)
    Binding posts (to L-pads)
    Banana clips (6 each)
    Special nuts and bolts


    Buy:
    DMM (digital multimeter)
    LCR meter
    VOM meter
    Soldering iron, wick, and soder, and flux.
    Soldering station and tools (including heat sink) at Radio Shack
    Hotmelt glue gun: to fasten the double caps.
    Gasket material


    Wires
    At AudioGon I have read 'smearing ' occurs with thicker wire, especially going to the tweeter's. Thus the thinner the better.

    JadeM at Audiogon did an exhaustive study on cable thicknesses, composition (copper, silver, gold), and seperation (this included braided, lightly twisted, and seperated with 3/4" air gap). He found the thicker the wire, the less detail, too thin, loss of body).

    I used to use # 14 wire But due to the thickness come the difficulty in wiring them and they also seem to stress the terminals more compared to thinner wires, So from now I decided I'd just use #18 wire to wire the inside of the speakers.

    Depends on who you talk to.
    Stranded is more flexible and easier to work with.
    Some contend that "skin effect" should be taken into consideration, and that stranded is what should be used, especially HF is involved.

    Why are speaker leads the size they are?
    It's a combination/compromise between resistance, self heating, cost, performance.

    For something as short as internal wire, I really don't think wire types would make any difference as long as they are not ridiculously thin.

    I use Duelund 0.5 - its by no means the cheapest at $10 per foot, its a pain to work with because its so 'springy' but the build quality and sound is about the best you can get (in my opinion of course!)
     
    Last edited: Mar 25, 2015
  14. bluesky

    bluesky Addicted Member

    Messages:
    7,606
    The wire inside, the binding post, the speaker cable and connectors are all important and are interdependent. You can bypass the connectors and go straight from the amp binding posts to the speaker, without another interface in between. Not practical, but better and cheaper

    I read with some interest the JadeM experiments and then played around not just with the wire inside the speaker but all the way from the amp. I certainly saw a difference replacing the stranded wire in the box with solid core soldered on to the speaker terminals. Also saw quite a bit of difference in varying configurations of speaker wire and followed the JadM idea of keeping the conductors separated from each other by a consistent gap of about 1".
    I ended up bi wiring using 12 gauge copper magnet wire from the amp to the main driver. I used a separate run of 18 gauge copper plus a couple of strands of 28 gauge silver to the tweeters + & - are an inch apart sandwiched in packing tape. everything is kept off the floor (yes you can hear the difference) all connections are well soldered. Very happy with the results.


    Someone 3:
    So, though not the way most people assume, the woofer does take the bulk of the power. That 'bulk of power' is not in the ultra low frequencies, but as indicated in the 250hz to 500hz range.

    As to wire gauge, yes you can certainly use thinner wire on the tweeter, because less power, therefore less current, is going to be consumed in that area of the frequency spectrum.

    Personally though, I don't think I would go any less than 18ga (AWG) wire for the midrange and tweeters. Certainly you could go less, but why? A foot or so of good speaker wire is relatively cheap. Why skimp?

    Someone 4:
    For my own builds, given that they use budget drivers, ordinary 10ga speaker or mains hook-up wire proves sufficient if using quick disconnects, or 14AWG if soldering direct. I don't believe in using exotics, but tweeter wires with low inductance and woofer wires of sufficient current-carrying capacity help. The Ushers use about 10 feet of wire for each driver, or 20 feet total of wire inside *each speaker*, so it's not a particularly small run for the L18 project I'm building, I've elected to use ordinary copper mains hook-up, 2.5mm for the woofers and 1mm for the tweeters.

    Super tweeter: ______________________
    Tweeters: __________________________
    Midrange: ______________________
    Woofer: _______________________
    Crossover (Capacitors and JBL bypass cap): ______________________

    Rek50
    Internal Speaker Wiring - I used:
    a. SOLID core (single strand) THHN 14 AWG wire to the LF.
    b. 14 AWG multi strand "Sound King" from PE to the Mids
    c. the OEM wire to the Tweets.


    Someone 1:
    I would suggest something like:
    14awg for bass
    16awg for mid
    18awg for the tweeter.
    I've heard some plated wire that sounded harsh to me, so I would suggest that you test them first if you want to go that route.

    Someone 2:
    The tweeters will benefit from a smaller guage, i.e. 26 guage?
    The mids a slightly higher guage, i.e. 20-22 guage?
    The woofers the biggest guage, 16?.

    Remag midrange and woofer speakers? If the speakers were played really loud and for long periods of time. Loud and long: remagnitize. Can be done at some speaker facilities. Don't know the cost.

    When receive parts:

    Remove all drivers and make new seals so they are air tight. Recommended by some but not by others

    Rebuild crossover and banana connection
    Solder speakers wires to speakers and reinstall speakers with special nuts
    (put in upside down??)
    Solder banana clips on wires (radio shack first)

    Put back on cabinet and test for sound and all speakers
    Take back off, put in airtight gasket and reinstall back. Seal the backs to the cabs using 3/16" weatherstripping. Or/ use some 3/4" wide X 3/16" thick foam weatherseal before replacing the back panels to seal them up.

    I also used ModgePodge (PuzzleCoat, dries clear) to seal the paper cones on the woofer and mids.

    -----

    Required tools: (see my other list)
    Data Sheet for the speakers
    Safety glasses
    Meter (ohm)
    Soldering iron/gun, flux, solder, wick
    Screwdriver
    Needle nose (large and small)
    Pliers
    Diagonal wire cutters
    Wire stripper
    Clamps
    Flashlight(s)
    Files
    Covers for speaker cabinets
    Soft bottom to place speakers on (mat)
    Long nitrile gloves (in case there is fiberglass in there).
    Q-tips for L-pads

    Hot glue gun and glue: You should glue caps to each other and/or to the board to prevent them from vibrating. You should see how much glue Tannoy used on some of their crossovers, you would think they owned a glue factory. I use a cheapo glue gun, works great. Use this to glue caps to board and to fasten the double caps.

    DMM (digital multimeter) set to 20 ohms to measure speakers.
    Multimeter with an AC Voltage range ?
    Audio Frequency generator or Sine-wave oscillator
    Special and Expensive meter: Normally what is bad in speakers is ESR (Equivalent Series Resistance).

    Soft paint brush, can of air, vacumn cleaner, and rags for cleaning.
    Woolite Foam Cleaner…Fabric & Upholstery with FibraPure Order Eliminator - Stain remover and fabric refresher.
     
    Last edited: Mar 25, 2015
  15. bluesky

    bluesky Addicted Member

    Messages:
    7,606
    How do you measure the response of your aged tweeters?

    Do you own any Test Equipment ?
    1. Multimeter with an AC Voltage range ?
    2. Audio Frequency generator or Sine-wave oscillator ?
    Do you have the Data Sheet for the speakers?
    If not, then go to:- THE ART OF SOUND PERFECTION BY SEAS - Home
    and look on the "Vintage Drivers" page, and in "Prestige Woofers" there.

    Advice:
    1. There are no L-pads, but rather wafer switches that switch in different circuits for the MF and HF drivers, they will have contacts that you spray Deoxit onto each of the three and then you rotate them about 20 times.

    2. Take the tweeters out of circuit (remove one of the leads either from the tweeter or from where it connects to the crossover. Measuring it with a DMM (digital multimeter) set to 20 ohms you should measure somewhere from 6-14 ohms. Infinite ohms is not good, neither is less than 2 ohms or so (should be 8 or 16 ohm nominal drivers)

    3. The capacitors could stand to be replaced. I would use Dayton 5% tolerance types available from partsexpress.com

    4. It could be placement, also, try listening without the grills on. If that doesn't work, you could always try stuffing more fiberglass or polyfill damping. You could also stuff a sock in the port (might need a few socks, those are big ports) Make sure that loudness is not on, it will make these speakers too boomy. The dull sounding could also be the midrange drivers not working, you will need to clean the switches.

    Questions:
    Best type of solder gun, solder, flux, wick?
    Is it ok to use the same internal speaker wires or install new?
    Stick with the exact cheapo caps for intended sound or upgraded caps?
    (I’m worried about maintaining the original sound)
    Is specifically designed speaker nuts and bolts better?


    Type of internal cabinet wire for:
    Super tweeter: ________________
    Tweeter: _____________________
    Midrange: ____________________
    Woofer: ______________________
    Crossovers: ___________________

    Resisters:
    Question: Would you recommend replacing the resistor along with the caps or just leave the resistor alone?

    Replies:
    I asked the same question recently and the consensus answer was to leave the resistors alone. If I remember correctly, resistance is just resistance, and if the old resistors still tests within tolerance it ought to be okay.

    Question: So why did you add the Mills MRA5 resistor?
    Answer: I replaced the original sand-cast resistor that was in there (a 2.2 ohm I believe). Sonically, it's a better resistor.

    I put in a new MOX Resistor to replace the previous cheap one and it was like taking a blanket off the speakers. More detail, better imaging and transparent as hell compared to before.

    It depends on the material. Ceramic and metal can be left untouched. Carbon types are however noisy lots that can be improved upon by changing them for ceramic. I have had sound problems changing carbon to metal on some speakers for some reason, but ceramic solved the problem. I also found that up-rating the wattage on the resistors if you play music loud regularly also made a difference. I also even bolted my cross over on to a heatsink. It makes a difference once you have had the speakers playing for an hour or so.

    With regard to the addition of resistors when recapping, it's been recommended only because some recappers find the sound with only new caps (without resistor) too bright. However, in most cases what has happened, the recapper unwittingly became accustomed to diminished treble over time due to raising ESR and when the treble was restored to it's original level with new caps it was as surprise. However, don't fret. Bringing a crossover back to it's original operation parameters with new caps is NOT a bad thing. Be patient, you too will become accustomed to the brighter sound.

    ---

    rek50
    Ever wonder WHY the port is SO large? Near as I can figure, the tuning is at 45.64 Hz (4.95 dia X 7.875 long in a 2.1315 cu' enclosure). 45.64 Hz isn't that low. Look at how compliant (Stiff) the cloth surround is. It seems you would need a ton of power to "Excite" the cone to move. By that time the Mids/Highs are Screaming over the low frequencies.
    I think they were designed to be used with the "Period Correct" Loudness feature activated on the receiver/amp.
    I have a spare set of W-2000 (12" Bass) drivers that I'll attempt to make the surrounds more flexible, to permit more cone movement. A heat gun and a rag, to remove the "Starch" from the surrounds, followed by a coating of Flowable silicone (brushed on) or something like the Black goop used by JBL on their cloth surrounds. A port size reduction and/or additional "Box Stuffing" (2" thick insulation) would follow to compensate for more cone movement and lower the Hz. A new felt dust cap over the metal cap on the S-2002 mid might take out some "Raspy". When in Doubt, "Tweak it Out"........
    Since I'm waiting for the actual speakers to arrive, and I've got these SP-2000Ws around (the original woofers from the SP-2000 speakers). I measured the free-space resonance (Fs) per the instructions at diysubwoofers.org, and came up with a whopping 60Hz! No wonder the bass is kinda shabby on the low end! And no wonder a 45.64Hz tuned box/port was an improvement!

    Qts came up as 0.37. I don't have a proper enclosure right now to measure Vas, but I'll post the results when I do. My guess, given the spec on the advertising literature and some screwing around with LinearTeam's online speaker-computation/display tools, that it's gonna come out somewhere around 1.5-2 cu ft. Which is pretty tight; looks like rek50 was right on the money in terms of surround compliance.
    Don't know what I'm going to do about port size, though; the port size rek suggested (3.125" x 7" length) looks to resonate at about 32.5Hz, and does reclaim about 9dB in the 20-30Hz range, but you actually lose a bit in the 50-70Hz area. 'Course, this is all theory and will be mucked up quite a bit in actual practice, what with the fiberglass batting increasing the virtual enclosure size and all.
    This is soooo fun.

    rek50

    Good Show on charting the Woofs! Sometimes it's nice to "See" what you're hearing. The "Quest" continues:
    1. I decided to check the DCR (ohms resistance as measured with a volt/ohm meter) on the tweeters in the SP-2000's. The ‘super tweets’ showed a reading. The other
     
    Last edited: Mar 25, 2015
  16. bluesky

    bluesky Addicted Member

    Messages:
    7,606
    two (two per cab) showed ZIP, Zero. I pulled them out for a closer look. What? NO GASKETS, from the factory! IMO, not exactly right for an "Air-Tight" enclosure. I made some gaskets from some left over foam material that was originally an underlayment for laminate flooring. The tweets were DEAD. I replaced them with the same model (Sansui). WOW, the excessive "Brightness" was tamed, by ADDING functioning tweets. I'm thinking the X/O was out of whack (in filtering the frequencies) due to the missing "Load" of the tweets. So, check the tweets and add some gaskets. "
    2. Internal Speaker Wiring - I used:
    a. SOLID core (single strand) THHN 14 AWG wire to the LF.
    b. 14 AWG multi strand "Sound King" from PE to the Mids
    c. the OEM wire to the Tweets.
    3. Replace all gaskets on all speakers.

    rek50
    The muted mid/high might be caused by dirty rotary controls, or blown drivers.
    4. Check each one (DCR-ohms resistance as measured with an ohm meter).
    The Tweets might be cooked, as in zero ohms reading.
    5. Cleaning: Loosen the "Dust" with a soft paint brush, and vac away. Easy on the vac detail, just enough to get the dust, NOT suck holes in the cones, or the "Dust Caps".
    6. After you have recapped the X/Os, they may sound too "Bright". Let the caps "Burn In" for a couple of weeks use, before passing final judgement. Usually they'll "Smooth" out some.
    7. my partsexpress order has included Deoxit as well as the binding posts.
    8. Dioxit the L-pads cause this could cause the mids (etc.) to go out.
    9. If your speaker is not responding to the L-pad rotation, it's either *really* dirty or it's begging for a crossover recap.


    Using caulk on the rear removable panel made a major difference in clarity, imaging and detail. Still seemed pretty weak on bass for a 12in. woofer. Took the rear panel off and ran a bead of mortite [ rope caulk] and resealed to eliminate air leaks. Woke the bass right up. Next move, do the same with the drivers. 2 hours of work. This improved the bass sound.
    Simple and cheap. I like the way the cabinets were made with removable rear panel. Makes every thing easy to access. You don't even have to press the caulk down as the pressure from the screwed on back will seal it air tight. They are not all bass by any means but when they were built they were designed to be air tight. Just getting them back to that original idea.
    ---

    It's been a while since I heard them, but my memory of them is of warmth in the midrange and solid bass. Of course, this was on phonograph records, 8-tracks, and FM radio stations (many of which weren't even stereo), which explains why I could be impressed by bass which didn't extend much past 60Hz. I did notice that the high-frequency specs on these are very peaky, and roll off significantly before 20kHz.

    ---
     
    Last edited: Mar 25, 2015

     

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  17. bluesky

    bluesky Addicted Member

    Messages:
    7,606
    Thoughts:

    Bad sound and loss of efficiency is the best reason to change to new caps.

    Just got done my refinish-recap job, they sound awesome!

    dead tweeters and the new caps did the trick. They sound great!!

    If this project doesn’t turn out correct that’s ok. I can use the crossovers in my 2nd pair of speakers and the speakers from that cabinet for parts and reinstall in my NOS cabinets:

    There is a speaker place here in Florida, The Speaker Exchange. Would it just be better to have them do the job?

    I have been listening to them all weekend. The sound has mellowed and become more balanced.

    Go with original caps to the speaker if you don‘t want changed Sonics!:
    Statement: Whether to use electrolytic or polypropylene (or better) caps is mostly a matter preference. Replacing old electolytics with polypro's can net a cleaner, often somewhat brighter sound, but doesn't necessarily maintain the speaker's original Sonics.

    Do electrolytic and plastic types sound different one from another? Perhaps. It is a raging argument. What this thread set out to encourage from the start was that fresh capacitors will often resurrect an old speaker. Electrolytics simply degrade, and we should expect that any specific speaker may not sound the same as when it left the factory. That is not to say that plastic caps remain pristine forever either, but rather they are a LOT more resilient.

    I used basic electrolytics from Parts Express in all of them, and also piggybacked some 0.01uF AudioCaps in the .1s. Wow - what a difference! Its a huge Difference in most Frequencies. Guys, recap your old favorite speakers and listen to the difference!
    The only word that came to mind to describe the difference was "Dramatic."

    Types of caps:
    Types of capacitors (hermetically sealed device):
    1. Electrolytic (NPE)
    2. Poly: top sounded too hot. (once again, use the original caps)
    3. Film (Lorne uses these with Sansui and loves em!)
    4. Foil


    Film Caps: Polypropylene, polystyrene, polyester, Mylar (a proprietor version of polyester- 'Mylar' is Dupont Corp's name for their polyester recipe) film caps are the better substitutes for electrolytic capacitors should you find any in your work. But…I’m not using them, not recommended and $$$$$$$
    All that been said, it is fair to caution you that it is not unusual to find that there is not enough room on older crossover boards to mount film capacitors. They are invariably larger than their electrolytic counterparts of the same value. Thus it is sometimes necessary to make modifications to the cross-over module in order to change cap types. Mylar caps are a good way to start — not too expensive, readily available and highly effective. Polypropes can scare you off due to their price and keep you waiting when you could be reaping the sonic benefits. Bennic brand (China) is a decent, affordable poly that has made a vast improvement in my latest project.
    Note to self: I do not want to speakers to be bright so I’m using Daytons as recommended by rek50, the SP-2000 guru! :>)

    Using expensive caps: it is easy to spend ‘hundreds of dollars recapping a 3-way design‘.

    Handling of your new caps. Weather it's an electrolytic, poly, or film and foil, a capacitor is a hermetically sealed device. When the seal is compromised, it threatens both the ESR and uF value of the cap, and degradation begins immediately upon the seal being broken. The main point to be concerned with is where the leads exit the cap body. It's a good idea to avoid applying much stress at that point and I’ve seen posters on other threads recommend using hemostats or locking needle nose pliers to hold the leads while bending, soldering, or otherwise terminating those leads. Some of the larger Solen’s get rather heavy, and I like to add a small amount of epoxy to reinforce that area where the lead exits the cap body. I have also learned to always test every cap before installation in a circuit. Capacitor makers also make mistakes and have bad days too!

    If you have to…Gob some polypropylene or Mylar caps of the same capacitance onto the press-board with some hot glue and a $12 glue gun. You could also get some breadboard, a wafer of plain phenolic, or a rectangle of 1/4 inch ply. Drill the needed holes, and then glue or tie the new parts on with plastic cinch-ties. Hard wire the bits to replicate the original circuit with updated parts. Alternatively, with a chunk of breadboard you could solder the caps in place and jump the wires to the caps to duplicate the circuit. If the caps are very heavy, you may end up having to either tie down or 'peg' them with glue to keep stress off of the solder joints.

    Install replacements that are as close to the originals as I can get. I'm not inclined to try to out-think the original designers, and if replacing caps that went bad after 20 years with ones that aren't "better" means I might be back in there in another 20 years, I can live with that.

    If I were to replace the caps, I would absolutely use the same type of caps in the same position- differences in effective capacitance, ESR, and DA between different dielectrics can lead to significant frequency response changes which may not be what you want. (You would have to do before and after measurements).

    Replacing NPE's with film types usually results in a 'brighter' sound because the old NPE's ESR has drifted upward resulting in added resistance seen by the tweeter. The immediate drop in ESR that results from replacing that old or poor quality NPE is heard as higher volume that folks mis-construe as brighter sound. In summary, that brighter, more open sound re-cappers rave about may indeed be simply the tweeter playing like it did when the speaker was brand new.

    Electrolytics (insulytics) maintain their insulating dielectric when voltage is applied to them. When they isn’t they slowly decay.
    It depends on the manufacturer, storage conditions, (temp) etc, but typical lytic infant mortality rises quickly with age.

    Old speakers sound mellow until the crossover is performing the way the designer intended, then they brighten up and sound new again. The bass is huge and nicely defined, mid-range is sweet and the treble is delicate and nicely defined.



    Can you explain why the caps ESR is a problem?
    ESR means Equivalent Series Resistance. It is a normal property of all caps. Electrolytics are, by their inherent design, prone to have escalating ESR as they age due to changes in the electrolytic paste.
    A new cap should have a very low ESR <<< 0.25 ohms. As NPE's age, ESR creeps up and up and in doing so, begins to act like a valve, gradually shutting off the voltage from reaching the tweeter or midrange thus reducing the highs those drivers are capable of. It basically begins to take on a secondary role; that of an added series resistor. So, it's important to speaker 'health' to maintain a low ESR in order to keep the mid and high frequency performance output the same as when new. IE, replace your caps with new ones. When this done no measurement is needed of the new cap. The measuring device is the BK Precision LCR-ECR Meter Model 885 and can cost $400 and higher.

    Remember that ESR is a measurement of everything a cap does that is not what a cap should do. If you want to attenuate a signal, the absolute worst way to do that is to depend on getting attenuation from poor performance of caps. That poor performance is not a stable thing. It will continue to get worse with age.
     
    Last edited: Mar 25, 2015
  18. bluesky

    bluesky Addicted Member

    Messages:
    7,606
    Internal speaker wires:

    Person 1: Is there a general consensus on wire thicknesses for a 3-way speaker.
    I will make a few assumptions.
    The tweeters will benefit from a smaller gauge, i.e. 26 gauge?
    The mids a slightly higher gauge, i.e. 20-22 gauge?
    The woofers the biggest gauge, 16?.

    Person 2: I would suggest something like:
    14awg for bass
    16awg for mid
    18awg for the tweeter.
    I've heard some plated wire that sounded harsh to me, so I would suggest that you test them first if you want to go that route.

    Person 3: There is no reason to make them different gauge. I use 16 or 18.

    At AudioGon I have read 'smearing ' occurs with thicker wire, especially going to the tweeter's. Thus the thinner the better.
    So my next question is; for a 140 watt amplifier, going into a 3-way, with a x-over at 2800hZ, 'What is the amount of power going to the tweeters? (is this a volt or amp question?). I have read at the Goertz website that they recommend different gauges of speaker wire depending on the power of the amps. The lower the power, the smaller the cabl

    Reply: As to larger wire causing 'smear' in the tweeters, I'd like to see some scientific evidence to back that up. Not subjective impression, but science. Current either flows or it doesn't, or so it would seem. e.

    JadeM at Audiogon did an exhaustive study on cable thicknesses, composition (copper, silver, gold), and separation (this included braided, lightly twisted, and separated with 3/4" air gap). He found the thicker the wire, the less detail, too thin, loss of body).

    As to wire gauge, yes you can certainly use thinner wire on the tweeter, because less power, therefore less current, is going to be consumed in that area of the frequency spectrum. Personally though, I don't think I would go any less than 18ga (AWG) wire for the midrange and tweeters. Certainly you could go less, but why? A foot or so of good speaker wire is relatively cheap. Why skimp?

    I used to use # 14 wire But due to the thickness come the difficulty in wiring them and they also seem to stress the terminals more compared to thinner wires, So from now I decided I'd just use #18 wire to wire the inside of the speakers.

    Depends on who you talk to.
    Stranded is more flexible and easier to work with.
    Some contend that "skin effect" should be taken into consideration, and that stranded is what should be used, especially HF is involved.

    Why are speaker leads the size they are?
    It's a combination/compromise between resistance, self heating, cost, performance.

    For something as short as internal wire, I really don't think wire types would make any difference as long as they are not ridiculously thin.

    I use Duelund 0.5 - its by no means the cheapest at $10 per foot, its a pain to work with because its so 'springy' but the build quality and sound is about the best you can get (in my onion of course!)

    The wire inside, the binding post, the speaker cable and connectors are all important and are interdependent. You can bypass the connectors and go straight from the amp binding posts to the speaker, without another interface in between. Not practical, but better and cheaper

    I read with some interest the JadeM experiments and then played around not just with the wire inside the speaker but all the way from the amp. I certainly saw a difference replacing the stranded wire in the box with solid core soldered on to the speaker terminals. Also saw quite a bit of difference in varying configurations of speaker wire and followed the JadM idea of keeping the conductors separated from each other by a consistent gap of about 1".
    I ended up bi wiring using 12 gauge copper magnet wire from the amp to the main driver. I used a separate run of 18 gauge copper plus a couple of strands of 28 gauge silver to the tweeters + & - are an inch apart sandwiched in packing tape. everything is kept off the floor (yes you can hear the difference) all connections are well soldered. Very happy with the results.

    I think you are both looking at the problem wrong, and asking a somewhat impossible question. The power consumed by any speaker is related to the voltage that is applied to the driver squared divided by the impedance -

    P = E²/R (where 'E' equal voltage)

    But the voltage depends on the signal. If the music has lots of midrange, then we will have lots of voltage on the midrange speaker. If the music has lots of treble, then we will have lots of voltage on the Tweeter. And if it doesn't have those, then we don't.

    I think the question you may be trying to determine is the Power Distribution across the Frequency Spectrum. It is actually far different than most people think.

    For full orchestral music, the bulk of the power is consumed in the 250hz to 500hz region. ("How to Build Speaker Enclosures" Badmaieff & Davis; Pg 118; Fig. 7-1)

    As a point of illustration, lets assume we are consuming 10 watts in the 250hz to 500hz region. That means in the 500hz to 1,000hz range we consume about 2 watts; 1,000hz to 2,000hz = 1.5 watts, 2,000hz to 4,000hz = 1 watt, and 4,000hz and higher = 0.5 watts.

    Going down in frequency; in the 125hz to 250hz range we consume 4 watts, 63hz to 125hz = 2 watts, below 63hz about 1.5 watts.

    So, though not the way most people assume, the woofer does take the bulk of the power. That 'bulk of power' is not in the ultra low frequencies, but as indicated in the 250hz to 500hz range.

    This is for Full Orchestral Music. There might be a little more power in the low end, but still not as much as you might think. But I don't see much different in the mids and highs with modern styles of music, and that is the area we are concerned with here.

    So, if we extend this, if we have a 100 watt woofer, we could have a 20 watt midrange, and a 10 watt tweeter, and still consider it a 100 watt speaker system. Though, I don't think I would personally cut it that thin, but 100w low, 60w mid, and 30w high wouldn't be out of the question.

    If you building your own speakers, some say the wire inside the cabinet should be more of the wire found outside the cabinet. If it is good enough to run 6 feet from you amp to your speaker, it should be good enough to run that last foot or so from the speaker terminals to the drivers.

    For my own builds, 14AWG if soldering direct. I don't believe in using exotics, but tweeter wires with low inductance and woofer wires of sufficient current-carrying capacity help. The Ushers use about 10 feet of wire for each driver, or 20 feet total of wire inside *each speaker*, so it's not a particularly small run for the L18 project I'm building, I've elected to use ordinary copper mains hook-up, 2.5mm for the woofers and 1mm for the tweeters.

    Soldering and desoldering:


    Desoldering:

    Desoldering Braid.
    Person 1: in 99% of cases I use Desoldering Braid.
    --> http://www.mgchemicals.com/products/braid.html
    and here to download instructions and info
    --> http://www.mgchemicals.com/downloads...pguide0805.pdf
    This method is very gentle on the PCB and you will hardly ever damage anything.
    Easy to clean working area with alcohol and Q-Tips before re-soldering.
    More expensive than a desoldering pump but a lot less expensive than the desoldering irons.

    Person 2: I had never used desoldering braid before this year, and when I tried it to remove a relay and some capacitors, I just could not believe how easy and effective it was. This stuff is a Godsend.

    Person 3: Another vote for braid. It does come in different widths for various uses.
    I think the benefit is that you don't have to keep the joint heated for as long as you do with the bulb and once you get the hang of it your work is so much quicker, easier and neater.

    Person 4. Pass the braid over a wee bit of flux and it just pulls the solder off the board like magic! I vote for the braid. I've used it on the pass throughs with great success.
     
    Last edited: Mar 25, 2015
  19. bluesky

    bluesky Addicted Member

    Messages:
    7,606
    Desoldering Iron
    Person 1: Try this from Radio Shack:
    45-Watt Desoldering Iron
    Model: 64-2060 | Catalog #: 64-2060 $10.99 $10

    Person 2: (From a guy who knows) That's the one! It gets my vote for most functional desoldering tool at a fair price.
    BTW, I've used them all, I think, and I have to add that although braid is certainly a great method, it doesn't evacuate solder nearly as completely in a pass-thru as this tool does. That's the reason this tool gets my vote -- but just by a hair .
    And regarding the comment about not needing as much heat time for braid, well perhaps , but you still have to reach the melt temp. in either case, right?


    Go to your local Radio Shack and plunk down $11 for their "rubber bulb" desoldering iron. It will be the best $11 you will ever spend. It is just magic the way it removes solder from component leads.


    I use the RS desoldering iron; it has a heated tip & a rubber bulb for creating the suction. It's excellent considering the cost -- that's how I discovered why those pesky 9090DB Dolby boards go silent all the time -- crappy solder.
    I tried re-soldering; tried pins; but it wasn't until I used this trusty RS desoldering iron to suck the all solder out of every hole that I finally had a permanent fix.

    The Radio Shack desoldering iron is very good quality for the price. Pick up some extra tips if they have them. The tips don't last very long if you have the iron powered up for long periods. Also keep an eye open for a can or metal tray to spit the old solder into. A tuna can will work and you can use it as a rest for the iron too.

    I have always used both the braid and a 'solder sucker'. Those fancy desoldering stations would be nice to have, but BOy are they expensive. The units from RS are quite good. All soldering irons have the problem of eating up the tips if left on for long priods. One solution I use for this is to keep a small sponge in a shallow bowl or whetever and keep it fairly wet. It's good to wipe the tip on occasionally to remove excess glop, solder, etc. It's also a good place to spit out the solder balls from the sucker. Once in a while you clean the sponge, add clean water and continue. You do have to be careful not to lift any solder pads with the foil or the solder suckers. These pads are attached to the circuit board with some kind of adhesive and heat will detach them. Usually, it's just a quick on and then off action. As someone mentioned, using a good can of resin will increase the 'magneticity'(?) of the braid. Just a quick dip in the pot. The real secret here is to be patient and careful. And make sure those new solder joints are smooth and shiny.


    For 'regular' electronic soldering I use a XYtronic
    station, plus a couple Wellers

    ---

    Thanks for the input guys, I do use braid as well, it's fine but I do like how the sucker type tools remove more from the thru holes that braid won't wick away.

    ---

    Person 2: (From a guy who knows) That's the one! It gets my vote for most functional desoldering tool at a fair price.
    BTW, I've used them all, I think, and I have to add that although braid is certainly a great method, it doesn't evacuate solder nearly as completely in a pass-thru as this tool does. That's the reason this tool gets my vote -- but just by a hair .
    And regarding the comment about not needing as much heat time for braid, well perhaps , but you still have to reach the melt temp. in either case, right?


    Go to your local Radio Shack and plunk down $11 for their "rubber bulb" desoldering iron. It will be the best $11 you will ever spend. It is just magic the way it removes solder from component leads.


    I use the RS desoldering iron; it has a heated tip & a rubber bulb for creating the suction. It's excellent considering the cost -- that's how I discovered why those pesky 9090DB Dolby boards go silent all the time -- crappy solder.
    I tried re-soldering; tried pins; but it wasn't until I used this trusty RS desoldering iron to suck the all solder out of every hole that I finally had a permanent fix.

    The Radio Shack desoldering iron is very good quality for the price. Pick up some extra tips if they have them. The tips don't last very long if you have the iron powered up for long periods. Also keep an eye open for a can or metal tray to spit the old solder into. A tuna can will work and you can use it as a rest for the iron too.

    I have always used both the braid and a 'solder sucker'. Those fancy desoldering stations would be nice to have, but BOy are they expensive. The units from RS are quite good. All soldering irons have the problem of eating up the tips if left on for long priods. One solution I use for this is to keep a small sponge in a shallow bowl or whetever and keep it fairly wet. It's good to wipe the tip on occasionally to remove excess glop, solder, etc. It's also a good place to spit out the solder balls from the sucker. Once in a while you clean the sponge, add clean water and continue. You do have to be careful not to lift any solder pads with the foil or the solder suckers. These pads are attached to the circuit board with some kind of adhesive and heat will detach them. Usually, it's just a quick on and then off action. As someone mentioned, using a good can of resin will increase the 'magneticity'(?) of the braid. Just a quick dip in the pot. The real secret here is to be patient and careful. And make sure those new solder joints are smooth and shiny.


    For 'regular' electronic soldering I use a XYtronic
    station, plus a couple Wellers

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    Thanks for the input guys, I do use braid as well, it's fine but I do like how the sucker type tools remove more from the thru holes that braid won't wick away.

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  20. bluesky

    bluesky Addicted Member

    Messages:
    7,606
    Just some more information:
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    Hi Kasra: This is the CHEAPEST way I know of. But it is not the best way, and there may be some strong comments in response to what I am going to say. The following solution is cheap and nasty, but it WORKS well enough to give a significant improvement to old X-over boards with drying out aluminum electrolytic caps. And, ANY local electronics supply source will have the parts you need for a very low cost.

    I don't know what is in the Advents, but I am assuming that they are bipolar electrolytics ... uhm ... 8uf — 10uF — 22uF — 47uF ? ... I dunno. Ideally you would replace them with good film caps, and there are lots of choices. Often there is a problem getting their large physical size to fit where they are needed, but it is virtually a universal opinion that film caps of some kind are better than aluminum electrolytics. Some people select paper and oil. Well, that's great, except if you are not in the money, or in your case balking over the supply issue. This alternative solution does not require you to order parts on the net.

    Get to your local parts store and buy some bipolar electros of the same values as the originals, and that are no less than the original voltage rating. Also buy some Mylar or metal film caps between 1uF and 4 uF — again no less than the voltage marked on the old caps. You will need as many of these as there are electros.

    The electrolytics you find will most likely be radial types, and their physical size will be MUCH smaller than the bipolars specifically designed for X-over circuits. It is pretty likely that they will be rated at 50 volts or so. If your parts shop carries proper X-over caps, by all means buy them. They will cost a bit more, but they are applicatiion suited by design. The glich may be that most local shops that I am familiar with don't have such an animal.

    Hot glue, strap, or otherwise fix these whatever bipolar electros to your X-over board as close to the appropriate pads as you can. Proper X-over caps will be a cinch, but modern examples could still be smaller than the originals. Lead orientation is a non-issue with BP caps. You may need to solder a tad more copper onto the leads to feed the pads — not ideal either, but then ....

    Next, you use the film caps to by-pass the electros. Even in these values their size is likely to be large relative to the electros, so be sure to fix them onto the board as opposed to just hanging them on the body of the electros. If you have not by-passed caps before, just solder the leads of the film cap to opposite leads on the electro. Use a heat-sink clip or haemostats next to the cap bodies to soak up heat on the leads when you do this.

    This solution will no doubt horrify the purists, but IT WORKS. If you have tired/drying out caps that you can't afford to replace and upgrade in the best manner, you will still hear a VERY significant difference. For one thing, these new bipolar caps will more than likely be pretty good in themselves compared to the 40 year old do-dahs that are in there now. And the bypass caps will help a lot too. You will be told by some people to use much smaller values for the bypass, but I followed some other advice, and I liked what I heard a lot.

    There could be a drawback to keep in mind: these smaller electros may not dissipate heat fast enough. They may dry out faster than the normal application would call for. I say MAY, because YMMV. But, in any case, you can be enjoying tunes for some time while you take your time collecting parts for the most masterfull X-over rebuild that you may want to accomplish some time in the future. Besides, it can be a treat to hear an improved sound that costs only a few bucks.

    Here are some pics of a cheap-and-nasty I did on a pair of Sansui SP-G88 3-ways. My pencil said that if I were to do the job in the best and most polite way, it was going to cost me more money than I had. And I decided that if I couldn't have the whole monty, then I would have the cheapest solution. So I made do with common parts from the local industrial supply house. Big improvement ... and it cost very little. I remounted part of the network on a plywood board. The next time I get to Tokyo, I will buy some better (larger) BP/NP electros, or go the whole hog on some big film caps.

    The blue, boxy thingy-puffer is a Mylar bypass cap. For extra copper I used "magnet wire" and single 24 guage strands of CAT-5 LAN wire. The big resistor is an original part that I mounted on a pair of ceramic insulated standoffs I had in my parts bins. I used hot glue to stick stuff on the ply, and tied I the circuit together on a phenolic mounted strip. The board was suspended on the speaker body by copper that I cut, bent driilled and screwed. Any moron can do it, and it is likey that you can do a better piece of work than I. The point is, just go and do it with what is at hand. The last pic shows the comparitive size of the old electros.

    One thing about doing things in steps like this is that you learn something about what is going on in your component. On a newer set of speakers I merely by-passed a 47uF BP electro on the woofer and — WOW — what a difference! I used a non-exotic 4uF film cap.

    Cheers and good luck. And BTW, any searches will dredge up TONS of stuff about speaker recapping both here and over at Audio Asylum.
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    Last edited: Mar 25, 2015

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