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View Full Version : I finally decided to build a custom sub box...



ian ashton
04-11-2010, 10:04 PM
for under the dash...

I don't know if I've ever posted this on here, but several years ago I used to compete in dB Drag Racing on a national level. I've owned and ran the curcuit with a bunch of different cars, and built even more. The most extreme incarnation was a 1985 Dodge Mini-Ram Van (basically a panel minivan) with a wall for 2 18" Shocker Audio subwoofers, 8 Ample Audio amps, a huge bank of bateries, and enough IXOS 1/0 power cable to go to the moon and back. That being said, I haven't used my cabinet making skills in like 6 or 8 years; the closest I've gotten was the super basic install in the boat, which I am now re-doing. I've kept all the tools, and have a decent amount of stuff laying around, which always comes in handy.

So here is what I started with;
http://moomba.com/msgboard/attachment.php?attachmentid=4967&stc=1&d=1271033722
Nothing really wrong with it, just a basic pre-fabbed Kicker L7 10" box. The biggest issue is it didn't match, and just looked like I threw it in there, which is exactly what I did, haha.

My work area; the drive way:
http://moomba.com/msgboard/attachment.php?attachmentid=4968&stc=1&d=1271033722

Always start with a plan!
http://moomba.com/msgboard/attachment.php?attachmentid=4969&stc=1&d=1271033722

Inside of the enclosure, starting to come togather.
http://moomba.com/msgboard/attachment.php?attachmentid=4970&stc=1&d=1271033722

ian ashton
04-11-2010, 10:09 PM
More pictures;

This shows how I did the front panel; to keep with the (approximate) correct airspace, I made the front panel a single piece, with the smaller enclosure attached behind. This also saved a ton of time with building a weird shaped box.
http://moomba.com/msgboard/attachment.php?attachmentid=4971&stc=1&d=1271034377

Hole cut for the speaker. It looks like its lop sided, going to have to check on that and make sure its not, lol.
http://moomba.com/msgboard/attachment.php?attachmentid=4972&stc=1&d=1271034377

A few test fit pictures:
http://moomba.com/msgboard/attachment.php?attachmentid=4973&stc=1&d=1271034377

http://moomba.com/msgboard/attachment.php?attachmentid=4974&stc=1&d=1271034377

ian ashton
04-11-2010, 10:13 PM
So next up I've just got to give it a few good coats of fiberglass resin and then cover it with some carpet or vinyl; probably vinyl so it mathes the other speaker mounts I made.

This whole thing started because I pulled both boxes (I have another 10" L7 behind the spotters seat) to glass. The one from the spotter seat compartment was absolutely trashed (water damage). The drivers side box was not damaged at all, so I am going to use that one on the observer side, and this new box under the dash.

ian ashton
04-11-2010, 10:16 PM
I just noticed I put this in Modifications, instead of Audio. If a mod could move that would be great!

mmandley
04-11-2010, 10:55 PM
Looks pretty sweet man.

cab13367
04-12-2010, 02:26 AM
Ian,

looking good but why not extend the false front all the way to the left for a cleaner look? I know you have your fire extinguisher there but u can mount it on the false front. Just a thought.

Al

ian ashton
04-12-2010, 09:03 AM
I thought about it, but I think I'm going to make a trim panel that covers the extinguisher and throwable. The main reason was that I still wanted easy access to the factory fuse panel.

sandm
04-12-2010, 09:21 AM
looks nice mang.

I'm going out on a limb here, but are you using that vinyl fencepost as an edge ;)

ian ashton
04-12-2010, 10:29 AM
looks nice mang.

I'm going out on a limb here, but are you using that vinyl fencepost as an edge ;)

HAHAHA! Yep, I did! My straight edge was in the basement at least 200 yards away, and I had just replaced a section of fence earlier in the day and still had that post handy! Lazyness is the key to inovation!

cab13367
04-12-2010, 10:48 AM
I thought about it, but I think I'm going to make a trim panel that covers the extinguisher and throwable. The main reason was that I still wanted easy access to the factory fuse panel.

Gotcha, I hadn't thought of that. I will do something like this someday as well.

ian ashton
04-12-2010, 11:09 AM
Its only happened once, but I popped the fuse for the blower and ignition once, and it took me a good 2 hours to figure out why my boat wouldn't start. Once it clicked that I probably popped a breaker I felt like a complete moron, haha.

ian ashton
04-13-2010, 10:42 AM
I got a nice thick couple of coats of fiberglass resign on the box last night; its really coming togather! Today at lunch I'm going to swing by Lowes and pick up some sort of paint for the bottom and backside. Hopefully I'll be able to get it painted tonight so I can wrap the vinyl tomorrow, get it in the boat Thursday, and on the water Friday?!

(It was still wet in all of these pictures)
http://moomba.com/msgboard/attachment.php?attachmentid=5020&stc=1&d=1271166094

http://moomba.com/msgboard/attachment.php?attachmentid=5021&stc=1&d=1271166094

Starting to set up, weird reflection on the top;
http://moomba.com/msgboard/attachment.php?attachmentid=5022&stc=1&d=1271166094

ian ashton
04-13-2010, 10:46 AM
Almost forgot; I also have to trim the hole so the speaker sits level, and drill a hole on the side and plumb the wires through. I'll probably do that tonight before I paint, and touch-up the fiberglass where I trim/drill.

mmandley
04-13-2010, 11:07 AM
Looking good, it almost looks like you varnished it hee hee

ian ashton
04-19-2010, 12:15 PM
I had a pretty productive Sunday, I must say. After watching the video and looking at the pics of the Exile installations, I really liked the seemless trim panel with 'flap', and I really wasn't happy with how my vinyl wrapped enclosure looked; this was mostly due to the 3/8" foam that I put under the vinyl, it just made the thing look really bulky. I also wasn't a fan of the "seam".

So, I made an 1/8" trim panel, with a 6" "flap" and covered it in vinyl. Immitation is the sincerest form of flattery! All thats left on that side is for me to pop a hole in the panel for my heater vent, and extend the tube.

Before, as you can see it didn't look "factory":
http://moomba.com/msgboard/attachment.php?attachmentid=5062&stc=1&d=1271690092

After, much better!
http://moomba.com/msgboard/attachment.php?attachmentid=5063&stc=1&d=1271690092

http://moomba.com/msgboard/attachment.php?attachmentid=5064&stc=1&d=1271690092

ian ashton
04-19-2010, 12:29 PM
Next up I decided to tackel the other sub and amp rack. I stripped all the carpet off the pre-fab Kicker enclosure and fiberglassed the box to make it more sturdy and less susceptable to water damage. I decided to just carpet this box, since its mostly hidden, and the carpet hides all of the flaws of my fiberglass work.

The finished product:
http://moomba.com/msgboard/attachment.php?attachmentid=5065&stc=1&d=1271690463

I also built a riser to get the box up off the floor. This picture also shows the start of my acrylic amp rack. Long story short, the amp will be mounted, with blue LED's behind illuminating the board. Something that will never be seen, but it took 15 minutes extra and ads a little flair. I ordered a bunch of TechFlex tubing to sheath all the wires, just waiting for it to arrive so I can finish the amp installation:
http://moomba.com/msgboard/attachment.php?attachmentid=5066&stc=1&d=1271690463

While I had everything torn apart I decided to freshen up the grills and trim piece for the subs. I used this stuff on a project around the house and had great results, so I picked up another can and went to work.
http://moomba.com/msgboard/attachment.php?attachmentid=5067&stc=1&d=1271690463

After I sprayed the grill, wet paint!
http://moomba.com/msgboard/attachment.php?attachmentid=5068&stc=1&d=1271690463

mmandley
04-19-2010, 12:36 PM
That new facia panel is sick looking Ian nice work bro

ian ashton
04-19-2010, 01:03 PM
That new facia panel is sick looking Ian nice work bro

Thanks! I totally copied you!

viking
04-19-2010, 03:11 PM
That really looks alot better with the single peice over the sub. Nice work?
Did you buy the vinyl at a local shop?

ian ashton
04-19-2010, 03:47 PM
JoAnne Fabrics sells marine grade vinyl (all sorts of colors, this is the closest to the carpet - I didn't want to go as light as the seats) for like $10/yard.

kaneboats
04-19-2010, 03:54 PM
That's looking pretty slick. I really like it.

dusty2221
04-19-2010, 04:10 PM
Can you show how it flaps?

ian ashton
04-19-2010, 04:43 PM
Yea, I'll take a pic in the next day or so.

mmandley
04-19-2010, 06:42 PM
Can you show how it flaps?

What you do Dusty is take the fascia panel, then cut it a few inches from the edge, when you vynal it you do it as one solid peace. Then the vynal will flex and allow you to bend the flap.

dusty2221
04-19-2010, 06:48 PM
Makes perfect sense. Thanks!

ian ashton
04-21-2010, 10:00 PM
I was working on the wiring for my amplifier, and snapped a few quick pics. I didn't have the cover all the way off, so I had to rely on the flash, not the best pics, but should give you the idea.

Open:
http://moomba.com/msgboard/attachment.php?attachmentid=5110&stc=1&d=1271897979

Closed:
http://moomba.com/msgboard/attachment.php?attachmentid=5111&stc=1&d=1271897979

viking
04-22-2010, 12:06 AM
looks like it makes for a nice little hidden compartment too!!

Razzman
04-22-2010, 04:11 PM
Looks awesome, nice job!

BUT may i make a suggestion, don't leave that extinguisher back there. Besides the obvious of not being able t get to it quickly, if the water cops stop you and ask you where it is they'll get you for that.

ian ashton
04-22-2010, 05:26 PM
Looks awesome, nice job!

BUT may i make a suggestion, don't leave that extinguisher back there. Besides the obvious of not being able t get to it quickly, if the water cops stop you and ask you where it is they'll get you for that.

Not sure what I'm going to do with the extinguisher. The factory location under the spotters seat is terrible. I like it where it is (I copied the idea from someone on here, was it you?), and it literally takes 1 second to get it from behind the door. I can't really think of a better place to put it, so for now I'll risk it.

Razzman
04-22-2010, 05:53 PM
Not sure what I'm going to do with the extinguisher. The factory location under the spotters seat is terrible. I like it where it is (I copied the idea from someone on here, was it you?), and it literally takes 1 second to get it from behind the door. I can't really think of a better place to put it, so for now I'll risk it.

Yeah mine is there also which i copied from CAB (Al), but with the Exile box going in next week and after seeing the install video i'm going to have to move it somewhere. I hated the under seat locale too.

mmandley
04-22-2010, 06:09 PM
Theres still enough room to have it under the helm just put it in front of the box, on the panel to the left that is next to the ski locker.

viking
04-22-2010, 06:24 PM
Not sure what I'm going to do with the extinguisher. The factory location under the spotters seat is terrible. I like it where it is (I copied the idea from someone on here, was it you?), and it literally takes 1 second to get it from behind the door. I can't really think of a better place to put it, so for now I'll risk it.

I agree Ian. I think you can probably grab it quicker where you have it than under the observers seat in the factory location. I'm relocating mine right now. Well NOT "right now" as I'm typing. But soon :)