DIY: iPod Dock From Reused Parts and Leftover Chicken 2

DIY: iPod Dock From Reused Parts and Leftover Chicken 2

Jul 24, 2009

Hi. Last time I went over some of the reasons for creating this dock and went through some of the initial cutting and rough stuff. I cut some mahogany, routed out some speaker depressions, and framed up the overall shape of the box. Now on to some refinement...

So after realizing from my review of the Dayton T-Amp that the speakers wouldn't work well with it, I started looking for another inexpensive amp. There are not so many of them out there that come in a size and price that I needed for this project. After tooling around on the net a bit, I remembered an amp kit that had cought my attention a while back.

Parts Express has provided a lot of ingredients for my audio fetish over the years and they sell a kit from Vellemen that thumps out around 15 watts per channel at 4 ohms (which these speakers are rated at). It isn't analog, as you may have become accustomed to me gushing over, but I do so love to explore. The THD (Total Harmonic Distortion) is at .07%, which is very clean. The most interesting part is that the frequency response goes from 7-60,000 Hz! CDs and most digtal music have a range between 20 and 20,000 Hz so very few amplifiers are engineered to go above or below that. Vinyl can go beyond those boundaries, however, so I will be making accomodations for that.

You can get the kit here for $30ish. You will need to buy a transformer for another $20 here (you could get one elswhere for less). You won't need any other parts beyond these ('cept connective hardware and a volume knob, if you want one).

Here is whata the kit a looka like:

And here it is partially welded up:

BTW- you should cut the leads BEFORE you solder to avoid breaking connections while cutting off the leads... I just didn't do it and I am ashamed.

After assembling the kit I went back to the box. I have had this piece of aluminum for a few years that I rescued from the foster care system. Admittedly, I have neglected it almost as much as its previous owner, but all the suffering has now led somewhere productive. The nice little curve at one edge will make for a swell detail that will bring out the "manufactured" look I am going for.

It was a little wide, so a jigsaw was employed to remove some excess:

I cut some shelves into the MDF to allow the aluminum to look like it belongs:

And then glued up the pieces and filled in where necessary with wood filler:

Sanded a little:

And this is the current fit:

I realize it doesn't fit exactly- you'll see why next time.

I then filled some of the holes that were already there with Bondo and drilled new mounting holes:

After this I began drilling out the aluminum to allow for some air movement to cool the amp. I first drew up what I wanted in Adobe Illustrator, printed it out and glued it to the plate. Then I started drillin':

Stay tuned for some fun twists to the story!

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