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Old 05-03-2011, 03:49 PM
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Default How to modify a fiberglass box

OK, this is not a regular situation I find myself in. A bit of background on the setup: I bought on eBay custom-fitted fiberglass sealed subwoofer boxes (12") for my 02 Camry. They are very well made, dual MDF rings for a flush mount appearence, good 5/6 layers with a few pieces of wood for re-enforcement along the flatter sides. 1.5 cubic feet each. Overall very nice and cost me a fraction of what making them from scratch would have.

Now my two issues that I possibly want to modify:
1
The guy who made them was a signal purity enthusiast, and instead of having speaker wire posts on the side somewhere, he actually ran 14 Gauge wire right through the fiberglass itself when manufacturing the boxes, so that they are seamlessly sealed into the actual box. A pro of this is that it allows for a direct connection from amplifier to subwoofer with no breaks/interconnects. This I like.

What I don't like is that he used 14 gauge (instead of 12 or even 10). I also don't like the amount of wire outside the box I have to play with - my amplifier rack is going ot be further away then his was, so the wire doesn't reach. I COULD use splices and just connect more wire to it to get the length I need, but that would defeat the 'direct connection' benefit and I would still have the 14 AWG there. My subwoofer will be using quite a bit more power then his (1000W RMS vs his 500W) and I wanted to use thicker wiring ( I like to overkill everything!).

So my first question is, what would be the best way for me to either remove the current wire and replace with a larger one or possibly just leave the current wire and add another lower gauge one? I've read up on a few techniques when drilling fiberglass, but my concern is also being able to reseal whatever hole I create. Obviously the other concern is that I don't want to crack the thing! Any ideas would be appreciated. Will get a picture up tonight as well for clarity.

2
There is no way to bolt the boxes to the frame. Now to be fair, they are very very snug fitting into the side pocket. But regardless, there is the safety concern of these becoming 50 lb missiles in case i'm ever in an accident. So I was going to look at adhereing a metal bracket to the back of these (uncarpeted fiberglass - only front/visible portion is carpeted) so that I can at least put one hinge-bolt in. Any guidlines for adhering anything, but metals specifically, to fiberglass would be appreciated.

The alternative safety resolution would be to make maybe 2 'key-stone' "retainers". What I mean by this is, instead of modifying the box itself, I would get a few metal brackets, cover them in foam/carpet, and mount them in such a way that they serve as restraining 'clips' for the sub boxes. I would place these at the 'high leverage' points around the edge - meaning that most of the restraining mechanism would be the actual snug fit into the countoured side pocket, where the clips would basically prevent the sub from ever sliding out of this side pocket - hence 'key-stone'. Pros of this solution is again, faster, cheaper, easier. Cons are, well appearence really :P


Thanks!

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Old 05-03-2011, 04:28 PM
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1...pull the 14 gage wire with some plieres til it snaps near the hole or slides out. widen the hole woith a bit to the appropriate size for the new wire. seal from inside with silicone. drill from the outside for a cleaner hole.


2....make a flat mdf base for the enclosure to be mounted to then screw it to the floor...if it was me,id just screw thru the mdf base on the inside of the sub box into the trunk floor.
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Old 05-03-2011, 04:45 PM
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You could use some 1/4-20 brass bolts threw the box and use ring terminals on both sides inside and out connected with the brass bolts .... take the 14 gauge and cut it flush and silicone it

For mounting it ...what he said ^^^^
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Old 05-03-2011, 04:45 PM
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Rico - RE first part, definitely worth consideration. Silicone will make the necessary seal? Or should use some resin to ensure strength?

RE the 2nd part - this isn't doable. The entire box is made of glass with the exception of of the MDF rings for actually mounting the sub. Furthermore, the boxes actually do need to be somewhat easily removable as they actually block the access to the brake lights when in place. Also, I kinda wanted to keep the jack in its pocket which is behind the right box. I keep a supply of basic tools (screw drivers, wrenches, flashlight, crowbar) in the car at all times, so an external bolt would be no issue to remove should I get a flat or something.

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Old 05-05-2011, 07:56 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gnesterenko View Post
Rico - RE first part, definitely worth consideration. Silicone will make the necessary seal? Or should use some resin to ensure strength?

RE the 2nd part - this isn't doable. The entire box is made of glass with the exception of of the MDF rings for actually mounting the sub. Furthermore, the boxes actually do need to be somewhat easily removable as they actually block the access to the brake lights when in place. Also, I kinda wanted to keep the jack in its pocket which is behind the right box. I keep a supply of basic tools (screw drivers, wrenches, flashlight, crowbar) in the car at all times, so an external bolt would be no issue to remove should I get a flat or something.

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the silicone will seal it just fine, put the silicone on the inside and let it cure properly before adding subs, if there is no mdf to screw thru, you could just screw through the fiberglass it will be fine, also you could try some really good velcro to hold the boxes in place as well, but if you do screw thru the bottom make sure you dont hit anything like your gas tank or wires
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Old 05-05-2011, 09:39 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tntahoe View Post
the silicone will seal it just fine, put the silicone on the inside and let it cure properly before adding subs, if there is no mdf to screw thru, you could just screw through the fiberglass it will be fine, also you could try some really good velcro to hold the boxes in place as well, but if you do screw thru the bottom make sure you dont hit anything like your gas tank or wires
RE Velcro usage... This is actually the route I was going to take originally. I acutally got I think like 15 or 20 ft of 2 inch wide, industrial strength stuff. Seems very strong actually. But after thinking about it for a bit, is it really strong enough? A few extra bucks/hours of work is worth it to protect my gear / myself / passangers (in order of most to least important ). Anyone use Velcro to secure your enclosures care to comment?

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Old 05-05-2011, 10:43 AM
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it will hold it if its industrial strength, try it out and see if it works since you already have some
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Old 05-05-2011, 11:46 AM
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Ive used industrial velcro to hold down boxes before. it didn't move...and that was in the middle of my trunk opening with just the base velcro'ed in.
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Old 05-05-2011, 11:58 AM
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OK! Industrial velcro it is! If it ends up punching a hole in the side of the car... well... I told GEICO that I have a premium sound system installed so its all covered :P.

And think I'll go with those $9 binding posts from dayton. Drilling a hole is easy - put down a bead of silicone to make them air-tight before securing them and that should cover all my bases.

Thanks all!

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