Anybody ever build a Snail?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by BillyB_from_LZ, Mar 11, 2003.

  1. BillyB_from_LZ

    BillyB_from_LZ Supporting Member

    Sep 7, 2000
    A few years ago, I bought a soft cover book, Loudspeakers for Musicians (or something like's at home). In it are a number of folded horn projects called Snails.

    The Snail 1 is for a single 12, the Snail II is for a single 15. There are others but these are the two most electric bass related.

    So...any of you DIYers out there build either one of these puppies? If so what is your impression?

    Also, for those who had never heard of the Snail enclosures, the author's twist on traditional folded horn design was that he ports the woofer's enclosure and feeds it into the horn as well as sometimes subdividing the throat to enhance the midrange and high end performance.
  2. stevekim


    Feb 11, 2000
    los angeles, ca
    wow, that sounds crazy. do you have any pictures?
  3. BillyB,

    If you know the magazine Speakerbuilder, which became part of AudioXpress a few months ago, the designer of the snails often writes articles for it. He has published a number of articles on his new designs with building instructions and all. they include 8", 10", 12" and 15" models that he says (of course) are better than snails. He also is going to write an article based on a 5" speaker (Phil Jones Horn anyone?). If you want more info on them or back issue info you can visit (no e in xpress) and check or let me know and I can list some of the particular issues.

    I've not built any but have been intrigued by them enough to think seriously about it. He has a 10" design that he claims is the best for bass guitar. Most are better for PA.

    Stay Low,

  4. Petebass


    Dec 22, 2002
    QLD Australia
    For those of you who don't know what a snail is, these are examples.

    Snail 1

    Snail 2

    I've thought about building something like this. I'm good with wood but wood won't cut it for this project unless you're familiar with bending procedures.

    The examples above were made from a mould. Pour concrete into it and let it harden. Yep I said concrete. I'm sure there's something our there which is lighter that will set strong enough. I don't know what - which is kinda why I abandoned the idea. I don't know what I'm doing.

    They're an interesting concept though. Especially since I really like the way some of the PA's folded horns perform.
  5. Lovin Bass

    Lovin Bass

    Feb 8, 2002
    Los Angeles
    Just a suggestion:

    MicroBalloons in cement/resin with fiberglass mat should be easy to mould for a snail. I am no expert so I cannot comment on the acoustic characteristics of these materials.

    Imagine walking into a studio and people saying "Who's the guy with the snail":D
  6. Those are cool speakers!

    But that isn't the snail being referred to. Bill Fitzmaurice is the author of the book (available from and the reason he called them snails is because of the bending of thin plywood that gives the outside a curved shape. If you're interesed, check out January, June, and November 2001 issues of AudioXpress. The book is only $10 so you could try that too. All of his designs are meant to be built at home, so you don't need to pour concrete (what would YOUR roadie say?) to make a "snail". The speakers aren't simple square boxes, and they don't have the given low end response that brand A (or E or B) 1x10 has, but they are efficient! 1W gives you in the neighborhood of 105 dB with a singe 10 or 12 inch speaker. Here's alink with more horn info:


  7. Please remember that horns project. They "throw" the sound out in the house, making them fairly useless for close up stage monitoring, especially when it comes to bass. The sound goes past you.