After gluing on the Mahogany wood veneer and getting everything trimmed out, it was time to stain the cabinets. I was scared to death about staining them. I had come so far, and I didn't want to screw the finish up. So, I purchased two different cans of Minwax stain and tested it on a couple of scrap pieces of my veneer. I choose the Red Oak color. I wanted the dark red color on the cabinets, I like the way it looks. The last set of speakers I made were a Light Oak color, and this time I wanted something different. I only applied one coat of stain, and this coat was a pretty thick coat. After about 10 minutes, I wiped them down with a cotton cloth. I wanted to work fast putting on the stain so I could get a uniform coat. I let the stain setup the same amount of time for each speaker. I worked on one speaker at a time, trying to make sure both speakers came out the same shade as the other. Luckily they did.
After the stain dried, I applied the High Gloss Polyurethane coat from a spray can. I couldn't decide if I should apply the Poly with a brush or spray it on. I choose to spray it on. After the first coat of Poly dried, I sanded it with 600 grit sand paper. It's hard to take that nice shiny finish and dull it up, but I had to do it. I then took a tack cloth and cleaned them off. I repeated the process about 6 times, giving the Poly a good day to harden between sanding. In Texas, it gets pretty hot in the garage, so the Poly dried pretty fast. The last and final coat, I laid it on pretty thick and left them alone I figured, I better quit why I'm ahead.. I really am pleased with the way the finish turned out. This was the first time I had ever done any kind of finishing work, so I think I got lucky.
I tried to show a few pictures of the base that I built for the Straight 8's. I glued two pieces of 3/4" MDF board together for a thickness of 1 1/2". After I had my square bases, I then took them to my table saw and turned them on their sides and trimmed a chamfer shape on the side. I wanted to give them a little bit of character and this was the best idea I could come up with. After cutting them out, I applied many coats of sanding sealer to them, so the paint would not be soaked up by the MDF. I probably applied 10 coats of the sanding sealer. Looking back, it probably was not enough or I should of used something else to seal the MDF. I then just bought a can of black high gloss paint and began painting them. The first coat was very thin and I let it dry. The next coat was much more heavier than the first. After the second coat dried, I sanded the bases with some 600 grit sand paper. Then I cleaned them, and started the process all over again. I probably put 6 to 8 coats of paint on the bases. The finish didn't come out exactly the way I wanted it, but I think it looks OK.
I attached the bases to the speaker cabinets with 3" long 1/4" bolts. It was pretty tricky to get the holes lined up perfect, so the bases were not crooked with the cabinets (trial and error). I then put a washer, lock washer and double nuts on the bolts, from the inside of the cabinets. I don't think they are going anywhere.
After attaching the bases, I then put some feet on the corners of the bases. The speakers will set on carpet. I might upgrade the feet later on. At this point, I was just ready to fire them up and see what they sounded like.
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