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Dead cab - has this ever happened to you?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by tonedeaf, Oct 12, 2005.

  1. tonedeaf

    tonedeaf Supporting Member

    I have an Ampeg SVT 210-HE that sat in my back room for 3-4 weeks while I favored my 1x15 cab. It had always performed perfectly. I took to soundcheck for a gig last Saturday, got everything plugged in, and. . . nothing. No sound at all. After recovering from a near heart attack thinking that my WT800 head was on the fritz, I started switching cables, output jacks, input jacks, everything I could think of that might have been the problem. Eventually, I plugged into a PA cab briefly and everything was fine. I went back to my trusty 1x15 cab and the gig went on.

    Last night, I unscrewed the input jack/wiring plate from the back of the 2x10 cab and shined the ol' maglight in there, hoping to see something obvious and prepared to be disappointed. There, on the bottom of the cab, was laying the speaker wire that connected one speaker to the other. Somehow it had just come off the connector. I reached in, slid it back on, and she was good as new. I can't imagine how one of those connectors falls off. To make it even more unlikely, the connector in question was on top of the speaker, so the law of gravity was circumvented when the connector wriggled upwards off the connector so it could fall off.

    Anybody else ever have this happen?
  2. Thor

    Thor Moderator Staff Member Gold Supporting Member

    It can happen.

    It helps if when you put it back on, you crimp the connector slightly so it is tight on the tab. Tight enough so that it takes
    a pair of pliers to get it back off.
  3. Eric Moesle

    Eric Moesle

    Sep 21, 2001
    Columbus OH
    Also, consider adding a tiny dollop of solder to the connection. This get knocked around pretty hard when schlepping to gigs, especially when tired/drunk afterwards.
  4. The only thing I can think of is that the vibration of the speaker started it loose, and it was likely about to fall off when you were playing it. When you put it away, the jolt of hitting the floor knocked it off the post.

    - Andrew
  5. billfitzmaurice

    billfitzmaurice Commercial User

    Sep 15, 2004
    New Hampshire
    Owner, Bill Fitzmaurice Loudspeaker Design
    The possibility of this scenario is why I always solder all lug connections. Press-on connectors make life easier for the people who assemble cabinets/cheaper for the management that has to pay them, but are less than totally reliable.
  6. tonedeaf

    tonedeaf Supporting Member

    Something else I noticed while I was in there was how tiny the speaker wires were. Here I am using 12-guage speaker cables, but the signal eventually reaches the speakers through tiny wires. Am I missing something here?
  7. The wire inside the cab is only like a foot long so it doesnt have to be huge to carry a decent current. When you use longer lengths it needs to be heavier wire.
  8. billfitzmaurice

    billfitzmaurice Commercial User

    Sep 15, 2004
    New Hampshire
    Owner, Bill Fitzmaurice Loudspeaker Design
    Now consider the idiots/audiophiles (interchangeable terms it seems sometimes) who spend $300 a foot for exotic AC cords (I'm not kidding, wish I was) when 99.9% of the trip those electrons take from the power generating plant to the $150 wall outet he plugs it into (again, I'm not kidding) takes place on $1 a foot cable. If that trip is from Hoover Dam to LA, or in my case Niagara Falls to Lake Winnepesaukee, you have to scrtach your head in wonderment over the whole thing. Beam me up, Scotty, no intelligent life here.

    In any event, for the short run inside the cabinet 16 gauge is adequate, 14 more than adequate, anything heavier a waste of money. If you've got 18 or lighter in there I'd replace it. Outside the cabinet 14 gauge is fine to 20 feet.