YJ Soundbar Build - JeepForum.com
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post #1 of 91 Old 07-26-2019, 09:41 PM Thread Starter
Koala21
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YJ Soundbar Build

After six months of driving around with a little bluetooth speaker and a little motivation from being laid off last week I decided to be productive and start my stereo build, because priorities.

After building three skeletons and not really liking them I settled on going with a squared look. It is a yj after all. So here are the two squares (rectangles) that will house Polk 6.5 woofers and 1 inch tweeters. The middle section will house the two cross overs and two KC cyclones. The bar is based off measurements from a VDP, I also ordered the same mounts they use. Originally I was going to use clamp on light bar mounts but the stock roll bar is angled in slightly and was annoying me more than it should have.

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post #2 of 91 Old 07-26-2019, 09:52 PM Thread Starter
Koala21
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Stretching Fabric

Onward to the annoying part! With a little help from my parents and their neighbor (Go Team) we stretched speaker grill fabric over the skeleton. I've used fleece in the past and I must say the grill fabric is the way to go, thanks to Car Audio Fabrication on youtube for that nugget of advice. 600 staples later and it was in place and relatively even. Here is where I made my first mistake. The rabbet I ran for the staples to sit in was a bit too shallow, this would cause issues a little later on, we'll get there in the next few steps.
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post #3 of 91 Old 07-26-2019, 10:09 PM Thread Starter
Koala21
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Fiberglass Round 1, 2, 3

Time to kill off some brain cells. I have a beard so even with a respirator on I'm screwed. With the garage door open, fan blowing, and windows up I sat in a fishbowl of resin stink trying to get the grill cloth wetted out. Being July it dried relatively quickly so I was able to wet out the cloth, give it a quick sanding and throw a layer of mat down in a few hours.

This was where I made mistake number two. When I was trimming back the excess mat I tried to make everything even with rabbet. The original plan was to paint the exposed MDF flat black and the rest was going to be raptor liner. By the time I sanded everything down it was pretty much impossible to get a solid line to cut the tape out the way I wanted.
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post #4 of 91 Old 07-26-2019, 10:17 PM Thread Starter
Koala21
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Some more mat

The whole bar was pretty solid at this point but the large sides I could still push in. This is typical with flat parts on fiberglass enclosures. Another layer of mat and I was happy with how solid it was. Then it was back to sanding and itching and sanding and itching. When it was down to body work time I decided to seal up the MDF with some minwax sealer. MDF is basically saw dust so it can take up water and swell. I'm trying to delay the inevitable as much as possible.
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post #5 of 91 Old 07-26-2019, 10:31 PM Thread Starter
Koala21
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Let the bodywork begin

Here is where you begin to question if its all even worth it. Stupid me started body working when it was 98 degrees and 100 percent humidity because I couldn't sit in the house watching TV anymore. So my working time was basically five minutes before my Evercoat Rage filler was hard as a rock. Luckily the palm sander made short work of the excess. In the first couple pictures you can see the imperfections that need filling.

Before I started filling I sprayed a coat of primer just to see how bad it was. The filling and sanding took a couple days and I didn't take pictures of all of it. but I can assure you it took a while. I had to fill the rabbet flush with the MDF and that took a few layers and sanding. Up until that point I was still hoping to paint the MDF flat black but by the time I was done it was clear I wasn't going to get crisp lines. I also had to do a bit of work on the edges. When I built the skeleton I didn't rabbet the edges and ended up wrapping the grill fabric over the edge and it wasn't a bright move. Live and learn.
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post #6 of 91 Old 07-26-2019, 10:38 PM Thread Starter
Koala21
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Raptor

My jeep is Monstalined inside and out and I really like the texture and look. That being said it's a pain in the rear to spray and amazon won't bring it to me in two days. So I opted for U-Pol Raptor, and I'm glad I did. It doesn't stink nearly as bad and all you have to do is fill the bottle with hardener, shake a couple minutes, and shoot. It's also very forgiving... my first coat had me a little worried but on coat two I was completely sold. It covered minor imperfections very well and makes me look like I know what I'm doing. Always a plus.
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post #7 of 91 Old 07-26-2019, 10:54 PM Thread Starter
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Wiring

After sitting in the sun for a day I figured it was safe to start installing speakers and running wires. This turned into a headache but as Reign Supreme said I will persevere and overcome. This was until tragedy struck... lost a wire on a tweeter and had to perform surgery.

This involved attempting to solder the wire to the broken connection. This didn't work. There was a plastic clip the connector sat in and the wire was soldered to that. All of which was broken. Carefully I pulled out the tweeter magnet and used a Dremel to remove the plastic, exposing the connector. I was able to solder the wire to what was left and covered the whole mess with CA glue to keep it from breaking again. After a bench test there was a sigh of relief and onward I marched.
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post #8 of 91 Old 07-26-2019, 11:08 PM Thread Starter
Koala21
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Everything installed

I used t-nuts for the woofers and mounting brackets and threaded inserts for both the KCs and cross overs. Wired up the speakers to the cross overs, heat shrunk all connections, and pulled all the wires out of a hole in the passenger side. All wires go into a six pin weather pack. I didn't plan ahead so there wasn't enough room to hide the light wires, but they're barley visible so I won't be losing sleep over it. Tomorrow I'll install it and see how it sounds.

Next Step is a sub box and something to house two 6.5 Polk coaxial speakers. Haven't yet decided if they are going on the tranny hump or the wheel wells. If there is interest I'll do a build thread on those too.
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Last edited by Koala21; 07-26-2019 at 11:23 PM. Reason: misspelled word
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post #9 of 91 Old 07-27-2019, 09:21 AM
Awesome
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Wow. You're an extremely productive bored person.

Nice work. I want one. How much?

The 4th 5-seater YJ in the world.
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post #10 of 91 Old 07-27-2019, 09:48 AM
bruinjeeper
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VERY nice work.

Great job. This should be a sticky in the archives

Stop whining about the 'ride' - If your YJ ain't wrangling your soul free, then might I suggest you buy a stationwagon... at least you can fit all your bull**** in the back.
~YJOTM MAY '16~
~YJOTM JULY '19~
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post #11 of 91 Old 07-27-2019, 11:21 AM
badweatherbiker
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I have a YJ factory sound bar I tried to sell for 3 years but just gave up and it sits there collecting dust......
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post #12 of 91 Old 07-27-2019, 10:42 PM Thread Starter
Koala21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Awesome View Post
Wow. You're an extremely productive bored person.

Nice work. I want one. How much?
Thanks, I'm lazy as hell but once I get going production happens. I wouldn't even know how to price this out and would have to factor in what kind of speakers you want, if your connecting it to a head unit or amp, and where the light wires are going to. That and shipping from RI to Texas may get pricey. We can talk further and see if we can figure something out. Just send me a message. I just don't want to insult you with a high price but there is a lot of work going in.
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post #13 of 91 Old 07-27-2019, 10:45 PM Thread Starter
Koala21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bruinjeeper View Post
VERY nice work.

Great job. This should be a sticky in the archives
Thank you. Haven't seen much in the way of custom stereo stuff on here so figured I'd share. I'll have some more to come.
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post #14 of 91 Old 07-27-2019, 10:51 PM Thread Starter
Koala21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by badweatherbiker View Post
I have a YJ factory sound bar I tried to sell for 3 years but just gave up and it sits there collecting dust......
Sold mine five years ago before I even started building the jeep. Figured I'd just build my own. Who knew it would take so long.
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post #15 of 91 Old 07-28-2019, 02:55 AM
Crazysjeep
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Very nice I'd like to see it mounted in the jeep
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