Cutting speaker baffle holes?

Discussion in 'Shock Brother's DIY Amps' started by Little Ricky, Feb 17, 2009.

  1. Little Ricky

    Little Ricky Tele-Holic

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    How do you cut perfect circles in wood? I'm trying with my jigsaw, and as you guessed it, I get less than perfect results. Just trying to make a new speaker baffle. I guess I could make a template, but then how would I make that circle? :rolleyes:

    p.s. Birch ply seems to be warping my jigsaw blades, is that due to the glue? I guess I just need to go much slower.
    Thanks.
     
  2. TelZilla

    TelZilla Friend of Leo's

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    One method is to drill a pilot hole in the middle of the circle, then use a jig attached to your router and cut shallow passes.

    See if this helps
    >go to Projects>18 watt lite II, and somewhere in the series of pictures, he shows it.
     
  3. FartherAlong

    FartherAlong TDPRI Member

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    I use a circular cutting guide attachment on my jig saw. Nail a hole in the center of the board where you'd like the hole to be, mount the guide and saw away. If there are two rectangular holes on the foot or base of your saw a guide will work. The guides are available at most home improvement stores.
     
  4. CDKopf

    CDKopf Tele-Holic

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    with one of these
    Many sizes available

    Bi_Metal_Hole_Saw.jpg
     
  5. TelZilla

    TelZilla Friend of Leo's

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    Seriously? Like big enough for a 12" speaker?
     
  6. CDKopf

    CDKopf Tele-Holic

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    OOOHH Ok not 12". :D Somewhat of a misunderstanding there. Ill just be moving along......
     
  7. muchxs

    muchxs Doctor of Teleocity

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    I cut mine freehand with a jig saw. Other builders say, "Use a router." We have half a dozen routers in the shop, they're dedicated to whatever process they're set up for. None of them are set up with a circle jig.

    There are a couple tricks to getting a clean hole. One trick is to use a fresh sharp blade. Another trick is not to use a blade longer than you need. I use fine toothed blades no more than 1 1/2" long. A 3" blade 8 TPI is just going to whip around and work against you.

    There are ways to get a round disc to use for a guide. Someone here used the bottom of a plastic bucket as a guide, it's round and it's very close to being the correct size. Another way to do it is to faceplate a piece of birch ply on a lathe, it's going to be 100% round. Or get the disc close when you rough it out with a jig saw and make a pin jig. Sand it round on a recipro spindle sander.

    I have a couple speaker mounts salvaged from an old juke box. It mounted two Rola 10" speakers on heavy duty sheetmetal mounts, the mount has a perfectly round hole in it. I stashed them because they may be useful as speaker hole jigs.
     
  8. Little Ricky

    Little Ricky Tele-Holic

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    Cutting circles in speaker baffle made 'easy'

    Thanks everyone for the help. The 18Watt link is great. Find the center of the circle, and nail a piece of wood to it. Use that wood as a compass-like rotation guide. I guess I'll have to build a jig to hold my jig (saw). The 18Watt pics also show that there are several holes in the jig to allow different diameter circles to be cut.
    Thanks guys!

    I'll post pics when it's done. I picked up a pair of Swamp Thangs to put in my Blues Jr. but they're 16 Ohms, so I have to use them together for most applications. I should have held out for one 8 Ohm, but I got a deal on these. Anyway, I'm making a new 212 cab for my Champ 12 with these.
     
  9. SamBooka

    SamBooka Tele-Afflicted

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    Let me know how it works.. I could never get my Jigsaw to cut 6 in hole without the blade twisting at an awful angle. I had to use a router and make a jig for that instead.
     
  10. Little Ricky

    Little Ricky Tele-Holic

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    At this point the cab is built - just finished - and the baffle in, with no speaker holes. Sounds fine, but it's too late to crank it. I'll see tomorrow if it can function without even cutting holes, since I'm getting enough sound out of the back of the cab, at least for now.
     
  11. bosstone

    bosstone Tele-Afflicted

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    There are circle cutting jigs you can get for a router with 1/16" increments. Cutting with a jig saw takes a lot of care and is almost impossible to do a really good job with.
     
  12. JohnnyCrash

    JohnnyCrash Doctor of Teleocity

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    Almost impossible is the phrase of the day for this job - somebody has to have the definitive answer to this common issue.

    I've used jig saws, routers, and other methods. None have been perfect. Router bits hate cutting through that much dense material (baffles are generally dense ply material) and jigsaw blades tend to be pushed away from the material (cut at an edge, warp, bend, etc).

    In the end, a jig saw, a patient spirit, and a slow hand have been my best method... this is the modern age, someone has to have a better method!
     
    Bill Moore likes this.
  13. bosstone

    bosstone Tele-Afflicted

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    I don't think you can beat the jigs I mentioned.
     
  14. HOBBSTER01

    HOBBSTER01 Friend of Leo's

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  15. mfguitar

    mfguitar Tele-Holic

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    rotozip with circle guide
     
  16. Might Help

    Might Help NEW MEMBER!

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    Hi there,
    Stumbled on this thread by accident. I have the answer for you.
    A jigsaw is the go. You just have to make sure your pivot hole is at right angles to leading edge of your blade, You have to make a hockey stick shaped pivot jig.

    If you want more info, let me know I'll check back.

    Cheers.
     
    xafinity likes this.
  17. 1293

    1293 Poster Extraordinaire

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    Hang a beaver above the baffle and adjust the length of the rope so he can just reach the radius of the cutout.

    [​IMG]
     
    Henry and Amazed like this.
  18. Jerry J

    Jerry J Tele-Afflicted

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    Follow this advice. Take your time and go slowly, very slowly. You'll do a fine job.
     
  19. vinman

    vinman Tele-Meister

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    I'm +1 to the two methods mentioned. The slow go with a jig saw or the rotozip with the circle guide. I know we all want to be perfect on our amps, but if the hole doesn't come out perfect who cares? It's going to be covered by a grille cloth on one side and the speaker on the inside. Of course I'm not talking about if it comes out oval or something. Otherwise then put a drum sander on your drill or an attachment on your dremel and clean it up.
    But, what do I know? I'm only the 800 pound gorilla in the room.
     
  20. telel6s

    telel6s Tele-Afflicted

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    Router for me. I'll do three or four passes to get all the way through the wood without burning out the bit.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
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