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Casters?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Fuzzbass, Dec 9, 2002.


  1. Fuzzbass

    Fuzzbass P5 with overdrive Supporting Member

    Not as in "What kind do you use?", but "Do you leave them on your speaker cabinet when you gig?"

    I was using 2x10 cabs until I got a 2x12 last month. The 2x12 appears to lack no bottom or volume even with the casters on, so I leave 'em on. That said, am I losing volume? At what point does the 3dB rule no longer apply?
     
  2. fclefgeoff

    fclefgeoff Supporting Member

    Jan 3, 2002
    Illinoize
    I'm not familiar with the 3dB rule. Could you elaborate?
     
  3. TxBass

    TxBass

    Jul 3, 2002
    Frisco, Texas
    yes, I have them on my 4x10 and my 15 because it makes moving them around much much easier. Don't think much is being lost, but sometimes it also has to do with what type of floor you are playing on (like concrete or a built-up stage that's hollow underneath)...at least in my observations.
     
  4. Fuzzbass

    Fuzzbass P5 with overdrive Supporting Member

    This is from elsewhere on the internet:

    I'm more concerned about tone than I am about dB, but I am curious about what effect(s) casters have if any... it's been a decade since I've used a cab with casters.
     
  5. Fuzzbass

    Fuzzbass P5 with overdrive Supporting Member

    To put it another way: people often talk about coupling a cabinet to the floor... (Auralex sells that "Gramma" device for de-coupling). Is a cab on casters coupled to the floor?
     
  6. jcadmus

    jcadmus

    Apr 2, 2000
    In my experience, casters uncouple you from the floor.

    Personally, I like the sound of cabs directly on (coupled) the floor.

    I use a homemade dolly with three-inch wheels -- scrap lumber, wheels from Home Depot, assorted nuts and bolts and cheap, flat black spray paint -- the whole thing cost me less than 20 bucks.
     
  7. jdombrow

    jdombrow Supporting Member

    Jan 16, 2002
    Colorado Springs, CO
    I prefer using a hand truck with inflatable wheels for moving my gear. The little caster wheels just shake everything up too much, especially on rough pavement. However, I have room in my truck for the hand truck, which probably won't fit in your trunk.

    Regarding coupling - I would take the casters off when playing. In fact, I've thought about making a platform with spikes on the bottom for true floor coupling.

    JD
     
  8. Clarification for the 3dB rule.

    I think when they say put your cab on the floor to gain 3 dB, they are talking about reflections off of the floor. Same as when they say put it in a corner, the trick is brought about by the reflections off the side walls. In this sense of acoustic coupling, I don't think the casters will make a big difference.

    Here's more on acoustic coupling stuff:
    http://www.trueaudio.com/st_spcs1.htm

    Some of this discussion is about mechanically coupling, and the casters might make a difference there. Seems like you'd get a more rigid mechanical coupling if your cab is just sitting on the floor. This is good because then your cabinet tends to stay still while only your speaker moves back and forth. Casters may allow your cab to vibrate with the speaker (actually in opposition to your speaker) and slightly decrease performance. That's why all the audionuts use those spikes to get their speakers directly mechanically coupled to the floor.

    So I think we're talking about 2 different things here. Acoustic coupling versus mechanical coupling. I dont' think the casters interfere with acoustic coupling to the floor plane, since the waves we're talking about are many yards long and the gap is only a few inches, but casters may interfere with mechanical coupling to the floor.

    Having said all that, I have a 1-15 cab and I leave the casters on all the time. I have a 2-15 combo that I built a dolly for since it is more stable when just sitting on the floor. So I think you're fine either way.

    Chris
     
  9. i JuSt WH33l My aMP in On mY sK8 bOARd ;)

    *Si*
     
  10. :D :D :D
     
  11. I'll have to agree with jdombrow... as regarding rolling the gear in and out of clubs etc.

    Rolling little caster wheels (whether they're on amp racks, cabinets, etc) over door thresholds, pavement & concrete cracks, carpet - to - linoleum strips, etc.

    ...tends to 'jar' and 'shock' the equipment. I visualize rack screws, solder joints, speaker baskets, cabinet joints and the like, getting loosened and stressed. Yikes!!!!

    :eek:

    I use the handtruck with inflatable wheels.

    Coupling? I hear a difference if the cab is directly on the floor vs. maybe 12" or more above the floor, I dont think the caster wheel height would affect the tone much.

    Just my usual opinionated useless babbling for your enjoyment.

    B
     
  12. FretNoMore

    FretNoMore * Cooking with GAS *

    Jan 25, 2002
    The frozen north
    At home or at our rehearsal place my amps/speakers (bass and PA) sits on homemade dollies with lockable 10cm casters, so we can easily move them around. When gigging we have a hand cart and/or carry everything, most of the time it has to go up stairs and whatnot anyway. I'm looking at buying GRAMMA isolation platforms for decoupling at gigs, but that's another story.
     
  13. Fuzz
    By now you know I also have the HT212. I have never taken it off the casters yet. It's got so much bottom I don't see the need. Most of the places I play have a box stage. If you put that cab on a box type stage it acts as an extension of the cab and makes the glasses vibrate off the tables in front of you. The 212 is mucho plenty for me, I don't even bridge my PLX 2402. I am also going through a medium size PA with subs, but we keep the house mix medium all the time. Mostly just to have total control of the band mix in front, not to be louder. We prefer going through all the trouble of mic-ing everything all the time for that luxury. My HT still jumps right out at the audience beside going through the 18" subs (me and the kick are fairley low volumne.) But.... put it down on the ground and see what you think. Tell the folks in front to hold on to their drinks though :D
     
  14. cjgallen

    cjgallen

    Oct 19, 2001
    I got casters on my 15.

    This is the first I've heard of the 3dB thing, but it seems easy enough to just turn the cab on it's side ;)
     
  15. Bryan R. Tyler

    Bryan R. Tyler TalkBass: Usurping My Practice Time Since 2002 Staff Member Administrator Gold Supporting Member

    May 3, 2002
    Connecticut
    Bump.

    I'm interested in this, and will the "turning my cab on it's side" thing work without affecting the rig otherwise?
     
  16. FretNoMore

    FretNoMore * Cooking with GAS *

    Jan 25, 2002
    The frozen north
    I don't think it will affect the sound any. But your now side-mounted casters may start rattling from the vibrations.
     
  17. rumblethump

    rumblethump Supporting Member

    Mar 25, 2000
    Pioneer CA. 95666
    Its been my experience that leaving my 15 on its casters does decouple it from the floor somewhat. Probably not as well as the aurelex. That being said, depending on the stage and the surface that I
    set up on, I either stand it on the casters or lay it on its side. If I'm experiencing a too boomy condition its left on the casters. I've also taken the aurelex principle further by placing a 1 1/2" piece of foam between my speakers and my all tube Sunn amp. Goin on 3 years with this set of tubes and it still sounds shweet.
     
  18. I have to say I prefer the cab NOT to be coupled to the floor-
    wood floors and stages IME tend to have resonant frequencies which cause some notes to disappear/ some to be overly loud/boomy.

    I've fitted Maplin castors to my Trace 4X10 - they tend to bend and fall apart after a while, so I'll have to find more solid replacements.
     
  19. jcadmus

    jcadmus

    Apr 2, 2000
    Oh I disagree -- I can hear a significant difference. The caster wheels definitely isolate the cab from the floor.

    And actually, I think I feel the difference more than I hear it.
     
  20. Fuzzbass

    Fuzzbass P5 with overdrive Supporting Member

    Belated thanks to everyone for the responses!


    LOL. I may remove the casters for one gig (one set?), but that would just be out of curiosity, because I totally agree that the HT212 has PLENTY of bottom even sitting on the casters! :eek: :cool: