Finally Getting Ready To Build My Cab, A 2x15 Or Two 1x15's Now That Is The Question
With a great amount of help from CLPeavey, thanks again, i am getting ready to start cutting plywood for my new bass cab. i am stuck between a single 2x15 or two separate 1x15 cabs. just when i think i have my mind made up i find a way to justify the other design. any of you have pros or cons on either design?
first of all i am gimped. i can't pick up either one so this build is going to be a "weight is no object" project. i have the options of large casters, tip back wheels, a cart or a dedicated hand truck to make it mobile. i am using 3/4" cabinet grade plywood, Kappa Pro 15A drivers and modified TL-606 plans.
if any of you have suggestions for a "old school" build like this please pass them along.
Having built a few, my thoughts are 3/4" is over kill.
1/2" baltic birch with modest bracing is more than sufficient, and 33% lighter than 3/4".
These is even more a consideration with a single 2x15 cabinet.
If you opt for optimal sizing for the driver, this will result in a very large 2x15 cabinet.
A pair of 1x15 are modular, can be stacked, weigh less (each) and easier to Tetris into a vehicle.
Two cabs = 2x as many precision cuts, and 2x the potential screwups.
You will use a tad more wood with a pair of cabs, but IMO this is negligible.
Please post your intended design, with measurements and/or volume.
You can download Cutlist and use it to lay out your plywood for the most efficient cuts.
With a bit of twiddling, you can make best use of your plywood.
I've used this program for years, and it is very useful.
It sounds like a fun project. These are always learning experiences so expect some hiccups along the way. At the end of the projects you'll probably have an opinion as to how you should have done it differently or what works best for you.
Concerning the casters, I like removable ones like these. The advantage is that you can use hardware store casters, they are easily replaceable, and the mounting plate doesn't require a large hole in the cabinet like pop-in casters do. Mesa sells a similar product on their web site.
A 115 vs a 215 is a tough choice. I think that it comes down to how you will transport and store the cab(s). A 115 can take up less space because you can distribute the cabs. On the other hand, two cabs have a larger footprint when not stacked. I can get two 115's into the back seat of my car, the door won't open wide enough to get a 215 through the opening.
Sound wise it shouldn't make a difference, especially if you have two compartments. Otherwise, I suppose that the format of the cab comes down to your personal needs.
2 115's sounds like a great way to go, until you do.
115 is rarely enough.
Even using light weight plywood and Neo speakers keeps the weight down but you are still lugging two big boxes.
Set up a nice 215 (like a greenboy Duely) and you just tilt and roll.
Much easier to move.
i am using the 3/4" because i already own it. if i were buying new i would probably use 1/2" for the carcass and 3/4" for the baffle. i plan to try some wide spaced dovetail work on the corners and the 3/4" should be easier for me to do this. the TL-606 is front loaded so i may even try this with the cabinet back. i may have enough 1/2" for the back but i need to check first.
i have been trying to decide between those mounts, sockets or tip back casters. i need to watch for balance issues but mixing 4" and 5" casters could give the cabinet a tilt-back effect
Dovetail work... Waste of time unless you just want the experience. Rabbet & Dado or biscuit - IMO is the way to go.
3/4 'cause you own it... Man you're maybe will really kike the cab a lot more if it is 12 to 30 percent lighter. A 5x5 of void free baltic, cut to rough sizes is around $50 in my neck of the woods.
I went 2x15 on my last build. Easier to build, easier to move than 2 1x15's.
Before executing a tl606, have a look at Precision Ports. Their 4" flared setup is pretty slick and easy to tune. They have a wesite. I ordered from Parts Express.
My .02 and worth every cent ...
for now i am building this rig as a full range cab/cabs but i plan on building it with two sets of inputs. at a later date, when $$$ allows, i could add a x-over or filters to the second set of inputs and build a sort of matching 4x8(?) for a bi-amped rig.
i may be gimped and broke but my mind still works OK. i like to think ahead and not trap myself into a corner.
I've used 2-15s for years and right now I'm in the middle of going to two 1-15s. Just easier for me to fit into my small station wagon with other gear and girlfriend.
I really liked having just one cab to schlep (tilt and slide, built in casters) but the weight and size just weren't working for me these days because I have no garage, live on a steep hillside, and the car is many yards from the front door.
Also, the main band I work with has a lot of self-control with on stage volume so there are a lot of gigs where I can get away with just 1-15.
So as has been pointed out in previous posts, it really comes down to the form factor (and weight) that works for your particular situation.
i'm not in a band. i'm just building this to practice with and as an old former boyscout "to be prepared". i plan to always drive some sort of truck/suv so transporting shouldn't be an issue.
i'm just trying to cover as many bases as i can and using the experience of you fellow TBers is really helping!
Im in the same boat as you OP. I think im going to go 215.
This will be a gig only cab, so it will either get hauled in the back of a truck or our band trailer... no need really for something i can stick in a car. Im going to build it light(ish) and have casters. I can see the benefits to both but i think in my situation having a pair of 115's will just add one more trip to the trailer.
Really this is a question that only you can answer. As you know there are pros and cons to both directions. For me I'd go for the two 1x15 route. That enables you to leave a cabinet at your rehearsal spot and one at home. This enable you to just take a bass and an amp to rehearsal and be able to do the same to practice. Small gig take one cabinet and take two to the larger gigs.
two compact single 15s has worked out nicely for me; i stack 'em for the rock and roll band, and use one for quieter gigs.
when it's time to roll them, the stack sits on a hand truck just as easily as a 2x15 would; when it's time to lift them, one at a time is a plus (even though they're nice LDS boxes and not all that heavy).
It might not make a difference to YOU that you can't lift either option, but if you were to try to sell the cabs down the line at some point, having 2 easier to move cabs would be a plus.
Honestly I think all the "tilt and roll" proponents are either delusional, or suffering from dementia. Yes, it works great, UNTIL you run into a set of steps. Not like THAT ever happens. To even be ABLE to "tilt and roll" you have to have the right kind of vehicle. If you don't, there's really no advantage.
Now if the guy was planning to make a super light cab with neo speakers and thinner wood, I'd say go for the 2x15, why not? But for 3/4" wood in a big cab with ceramic speakers, I think 2 cabs is the way to go. Presumably SOMEBODY is going to have to move these cabs, and if it comes down to it, a 60 pound single is still doable by just about any moderately strong person by themselves. A 110 pound dual 15, you are pretty much stuck with wherever you can roll it, unless you have 2 people.
Bs I can carry a ~105 pound up and down stairs no problem. I do prefer to tilt and roll though.
Ultimately I think the deciding factor will be the ergonomics of getting it through door ways. If the cab is wider than a doorway on the face you want to tilt against, you are screwed.
I would rather make one trip up a set of stairs with a 105 pound cab then two trips with 75+ pound 115 cabs.
I have 2 115's with 3015's in them now. 44 pounds each. I can tell you what a PITA it is moving them around, and they are not even that heavy.
The 3015's are going in a Greenboy Duelly real soon.
Sub 60 pound 215 with side casters is my dream cab.
Uhmmmm, how do you get that a 2x15 would be 105 lbs but 2 15s made the same way would be "75+"? 2 single 15s takes 45 lbs of extra wood? Unlikely. 55/105 is a bit more realistic.
And sure, it's POSSIBLE for SOME people to lift and carry a 2x15 by themselves. I have done it with my ACC 106. But it is not fun, easy, or particularly safe. And that is probably one of the lightest "old school" 2x15s around. Meanwhile, my smaller 1x15 at maybe 55 pounds, while a handful, isn't too bad to carry around by myself. I think all but the smallest/weakest healthy adult males could handle something in the 40-60 pound range without too much problem.
Anyway, like someone mentioned, it's just as easy to put 2 1x15s on a handtruck and roll them around as it is to roll around a 2x15. The difference comes when you get to a flight of stairs, or a big patch of mud, or some other obstacle where 3" wheels won't help you.
I would like to be here to laugh at the young bucks when they get to my age.
But, I will be dead by then.
Somebody else will get a good laugh over a geezer hauling a heavy 2x15 <anywhere>.
Wood-wise, there is effectively one more panel in a pair of 1x15 vs. a 2x15.
Agreed, there are more cuts to be made.
This is the top panel of the bottom box, and bottom panel of the top box.
I find accuracy and warping becomes more difficult with larger panels.
PL Premium adhesive does cover a lot of sin.
What is not mentioned yet, is the volume required, per driver.
This can make for a very large 2x15 box.
OP, please post your intended drivers.
The Ampeg 810 is 48H x 26W x 16D.
My T48s are 48H x 27W x 24D, and use the tilt-back system with built-in casters.
My T39 is 39H x 27W x 20D.
I'd hate stairs with these. A lot.
A pair of 1x15 can be stacked nicely onto a dolly with real pneumatic tires.
These are so much more friendly in rough terrain, than is a 3" caster on a tilt-back.
i'm far from a young buck myself and with severe health issues i will barely be able to move either design around by myself. this is really just for me to practice and learn with.
if i ever get as far as being in a band setting i will need to build a twin to this cab and leave it where ever we practice.
with the amp head i already bought i would then be able to push both 2x15 cabs and have myself covered for just about any situation.
the drivers i am using are: http://www.speakerhardware.com/kappa-pro-15a.php
I suppose you could let some strong kid move it for you, in exchange for dating your daughter. :D
You got the drivers from the right place. Leland is an upstanding guy.
In a vented box, this driver is the 3.8~4.8 cubic feet per driver range.
You might be able to shave down the volume with some creative stuffing of the box, i.e. 1 pound fiber fill per 1 cubic foot of volume.
In a sealed box this yields a net box reduction of 25% +/-, driver dependent, so probably works in vented also.
Testing this is one of my bucket list items.
Care is required to keep stuffing out of the vent, or things change with unpredictable results.
I'd be hesitant about that much box from 3/8" BB unless you do a lot of swiss-cheese bracing.
1/2" BB might prove easier to work for large panels.
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