Speaker Cabinet Plywood

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Joe Louvar, Apr 10, 2012.

  1. Joe Louvar

    Joe Louvar Guest

    Jun 6, 2011
    Santa Rosa, CA USA
    What happens if you build a speaker cabinet with cheap 1/2” plywood instead of using good void free 1/2" Baltic Birch Plywood? What are the noticeable and not so noticeable differences? Thanks
  2. Joe Louvar

    Joe Louvar Guest

    Jun 6, 2011
    Santa Rosa, CA USA
    Oh, and it there better speaker cabinet plywood than void free Baltic Birch?
  3. Jim Carr

    Jim Carr Dr. Jim

    Jan 21, 2006
    Denton, TX or Kailua, HI
    fEARful Kool-Aid dispensing liberal academic card-carrying union member Musicians Local 72-147
  4. wcriley


    Apr 5, 2010
    Western PA
    I've built 2 BFM Jack 10s and a fEARful out of regular generic pine plywood.
    It splinters a bit easier when you saw it, unless you use a really good blade.
    If it has voids on the edge of a panel, it looks like crap. (And may affect the strength of the glue joint.)
    If a panel has unseen voids, it can be easily danamged.
    If the voids are large enough, I think they could cause resonances.

    Arauco plywood is lighter, but tends to warp.

    A couple of guys have used Italian Poplar, which is even lighter but pretty soft.
  5. will33


    May 22, 2006
    There are varieties that make quality cab plywood other than BB, Aruco is one. The main things you want are an outer ply just as thick as the rest instead of the paper thin veneer some have. More thinner plys are stronger than fewer thick ones. The main problem with a lot of the cheaper wood is it has too many voids (holes you find when you cut it up where the inner plys don't meet and leave an air gap), and a lot of them use cheap glue/cheaper processes to make the plywood itself. Doesn't matter how good you glue something to the outer ply if that ply is going to separate from the rest. If the thin veneer is the only downfall, but it's good quality other than that, you can get around it by cutting panels at a 45 so you're gluing edge-grain to edge grain. I'd still go so far as to strip the veneer where the baffle sits, crossbraces should be fine if they're tight fitting, which they should be.

    Get into building something like a BFM cab where you have odd angles making up the horn and attaching mid panel, you can't cheat around the veneer. Then you use quality, or don't build.
  6. Joe Louvar

    Joe Louvar Guest

    Jun 6, 2011
    Santa Rosa, CA USA
    way cool, thank you very much.