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Plexiglass Enclosures?

 

Bronze Member
Username: Jay_dub

Louisiana United States

Post Number: 53
Registered: Sep-04
Are plexiglass enclosures any good?Are they better than the usual wood enclosures and do they vibrate more?
 

Gold Member
Username: Glasswolf

NorthWest, Michigan USA

Post Number: 5295
Registered: Dec-03
per thickness, plexi (lexan actually) will flex more than MDF. People use it because it's pretty and they want to see the subs.
The thing about using lexan is that if you want to use it on a load bearing surface (a panel subjected to the pressures exerted by the speaker) you need to use no less than .75" lexan, and that stuff is about a grand per 4x8' sheet.
The crumby little bandpass boxes in Best Buy with the .25" plexi windows aren't that good, and that panel isn't load bearing generally. If it were, it'd get blown out by any decent sub in no time.
 

Silver Member
Username: Pat_l

Tucson, AZ USA

Post Number: 697
Registered: Apr-04
I hate plexiglass, i think that it is a waste. For one thing i would say it doesnt sound as good, due to the large amount of flex of the box. Also lexan will scratch very easy. It can also fog or yellow over time. I say stick to wood or fiberglass.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Jay_dub

Louisiana United States

Post Number: 54
Registered: Sep-04
I'm thinking about building a box for 4 JLw6 12's and cut the JL Audio logo out of the top of the box and put plexiglass and then put neons in it.Will that be good are will it flex more.If the box flexs too much,what will happen?
 

Silver Member
Username: Koz1031

Monticello, In United states

Post Number: 248
Registered: Jul-04
build your box. carpet everything but the top. On a seperate piece of MDF cut in you logo. Make some 1 1/4 in standoffs, and put your plexi on top of that. The 1 1/4 will give you room for your neon light bars. You may also want to look at led lights instead of neon. They put out more light, use less amps, and are a lot lot cheaper.
 

Silver Member
Username: Koz1031

Monticello, In United states

Post Number: 249
Registered: Jul-04
oh by the way, one thing that glass forgot to mention, is that lexan over time has a tendacy to harden when exposed to the elements,(cold and heat) and breaks very easily. We use it alot at work, and are constantly replacing pieces for this very reason.
 

Gold Member
Username: Glasswolf

NorthWest, Michigan USA

Post Number: 5334
Registered: Dec-03
koz is right, but lexan is still preferred for enclosures over plexiglass. Both are going to flex more than MDF though and are mainly just for looks. Not for performance.
Flexing in the box causes loss of energy, and as the box flexes, you also to a degree, affect the box volume which can change the tuning of a port somewhat affecting sound quality.
ideally you want no flex in the box, so that all energy generated is acoustic.. and you get teh most work out, based on the power put in.

Another thing about lexan/plexi.. you need to do a lot more work ti buff out and polish the edges where you make cuts, you need to pre-drill and countersink ALL screws etc, and take extra precautions to seal the enclosure joints.
It's really a lot of work..
 

Bronze Member
Username: Jay_dub

Louisiana United States

Post Number: 55
Registered: Sep-04
So yall don't think it will be a good idea to put plexiglass.It will be in a ported box and I didn't think it would matter that much because it not that much pressure on the box as it would be in a sealed?Is it all right to put 4 subs in one box with 1 divider and put a port on each side?Thats how my cousin had his JLs(w3)and they slammed.
 

Silver Member
Username: Koz1031

Monticello, In United states

Post Number: 252
Registered: Jul-04
There's more pressure in a ported box than what you think. Are you going to make the entire box out of lexan or just one side. I've seen it done both ways.
It is apparent that Glass or I neither one recommend it as on enclosure. Just the price of the stuff alone is a deterrent to me. 3/4 lexy is very expensive. it's gonna take you at least 1 sheet 4x8 to build a box big enuf for 4 subs. there is around $1000 just for the lexy. Now you have your time and labor in it plus the cost of any mistakes that you would happen to make. Even though it comes with a protective covering, it still gets little rips and tears and scratches to beat the band. And there is nothing uglier than a scratched up box with subs in it.
But if that's what you want to do, I can give you one little hint. Make all cuts with a little bit rougher cut blade. Leave about 1/16 to 1/6 of an inch over. Switch to a medium toothed blade to make final dim. cuts. this makes it easier to "polish" the edges." To polish the edges a 1800 watt blow drier works great. Use scrap pieces to get the hang of it. You can get good enuf with it that polishing is not needed. Do as Glass suggested and predrill and countersink all holes unless you are using polished stainless steel caphead screws. Also if not using button heads, use flathead (the reason for the countersinking) they have a larger diameter head and therefore cover more surface area, making the box a little stronger. The screws should also be glued in. Do not use superglue. There is a glue that we use that is designed for lexan, you can put it in a syringe, and get the glue down in the the thrreads, it dries clear and you can't even hardly tell that it is there, plus it is very very strong. If you decide to go this route let me know, and I'll get you the name of it, and who makes it. You'll have to order it, as it isn't something you go to the local hardware store and buy.
Other thatn that, have fun with your project, I will have to admit I like the looks of plexiglass enclosures, especially if they are made right, but the price is just way to expensive.
 

Gold Member
Username: Glasswolf

NorthWest, Michigan USA

Post Number: 5371
Registered: Dec-03
yeah if plexi is done right it looks terrific.. really shines in a good show car setting, but it's just that.. a show car setting.
These kinds of boxes aren't really meant for daily drivers where they'll get banged up.
You really need to baby the boxes, and they weigh a TON if they are full plexi or lexy. You can polish out small scratches with buffing compound and a dremel or polishing wheel, but that only works for so long.
Hey as long as ya have the funds, and you know what you're getting yourself into, go for it, but we're jsut trying to give ya the realities of the materials for boxes.
It's anything but cheap. These QLogic boxes I see at best buy with the small square window in a bandpass box drive me nuts. They use quarter-inch plexi that flexes like mad, and in small print they tell you not to use high power or high SPL subs in the box. Yeah no kidding.. you'd blow the box apart. They're made to be cheap, look pretty, and possibly work well enough to get by with cheap subs. They sadly also tend to make people think they can build a whole box from 1/4" plexi and it'll work.

If ya do use lexan, get pics when its all done.
I have a few lexan box pics that are mind blowing.. but for every one of those, there are twenty that look like crap.
I hope yours comes out really well.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Jay_dub

Louisiana United States

Post Number: 56
Registered: Sep-04
I don't want to build the whole box out of plexiglass just the logo on top of the box here is a picture of the enclosure www.tinypic.com/f9ulk ,its not the best,but it gives you the idea.What do yall think,will it work well?
 

Anonymous
 
Nice box they should pound!!:-)
 

Gold Member
Username: Jonathan_f

GA USA

Post Number: 2538
Registered: May-04
That is a misconception about ported boxes, there is actually MORE pressure inside a ported box compared to sealed. You can use one divider, but remember if one sub on that side fails, and the other still works, it will be seeing twice the box size and thus a lower tune, plus it'll be pushing the cone of the other sub, potentially damaging both.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Jay_dub

Louisiana United States

Post Number: 57
Registered: Sep-04
Thanx Jonathan,what amp(s)do you think would be the best for the 4 w6 JLs,2 JL 500 amps or 1 JL 1000?
 

Gold Member
Username: Jonathan_f

GA USA

Post Number: 2542
Registered: May-04
I'd just go with the 1000/1, same power output, one amp, less wiring, and you save a little space.
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