A delicate project: $1300.0000 on the line

@TheHorse (73392)
Walnut Creek, California
November 8, 2017 5:44pm CST
I bought a pair of Acoustic Research AR-3a loudspeakers for $280 about seven years ago. They are classic speakers, made in 1968 or so, and designed in part by Audio Hall-of-Famer Henry Kloss. A minty pair commands about $1300 on eBay. Over the years, I've refinished the wood, had the problematic midrange and tweeter controls repaired in compensation for some wood refinishing work, and made screens for the speakers that match the originals. But I recently heard some distortion on bass note in one speaker, and discovered that the "surround" of the woofer on that speaker has separated from the metal frame that supports it. I am about to embark on a major project: I am going to glue the surround back to the metal frame. I am going to use Gorilla Glue, a powerful adhesive. If I fail, I will have a pair of AR-3as in need of an expensive early woofer. If I succeed, I will have a pair of minty AR-3as worth $1300. I will still have to listen and decide whether I want to sell these speakers or keep them as part of my permanent collection. A single of an earlier version of this speaker is actually in the Smithsonian Institution. Please take a deep breath with me and wish me luck.
10 people like this
11 responses
@Corbin5 (119169)
• United States
8 Nov 17
I have taken a deep breath and am wishing you luck right now. I bet you fix the problem!
3 people like this
@TheHorse (73392)
• Walnut Creek, California
9 Nov 17
Thanks! I just went ahead and put the glue in. The surround is weighted down with a few stain cans. I'm off to see a kid client. It should be dry enough to test when I get back.
2 people like this
@Corbin5 (119169)
• United States
9 Nov 17
2 people like this
@TheHorse (73392)
• Walnut Creek, California
9 Nov 17
@Corbin5 I'll provide a report when I test them. The speakers are great cosmetically, I just want them to work 100% before I decide whether to keep or sell them.
1 person likes this
• Defuniak Springs, Florida
9 Nov 17
Ooohsaw . Itll all be okay.
1 person likes this
@TheHorse (73392)
• Walnut Creek, California
9 Nov 17
I hope so too. It SHOULD be OK.
• Defuniak Springs, Florida
9 Nov 17
@TheHorse How's it look this morning?
1 person likes this
@TheHorse (73392)
• Walnut Creek, California
9 Nov 17
@thislittlepennyearns It looks fine. And sounded fine at low volume last night. I'll try them louder later today.
@kobesbuddy (57308)
• East Tawas, Michigan
8 Nov 17
The speakers from 1968 were made better, than ones we might buy today. I'll definitely wish you luck, that the Gorilla Glue will hold the surrounds back to the metal frame. I can't wait to see them, once you're finished!:)
1 person likes this
@TheHorse (73392)
• Walnut Creek, California
9 Nov 17
You are so right! It is worth it to restore these older speakers.
1 person likes this
@kobesbuddy (57308)
• East Tawas, Michigan
9 Nov 17
@TheHorse Yes, it's a great idea, to restore them as best you can:)
1 person likes this
@TheHorse (73392)
• Walnut Creek, California
9 Nov 17
@kobesbuddy I think I have a picture (somewhere on my computer) of what they look like. But they have to sound perfect for me to be happy with them. I want them to be "plug and play," whether I keep them or sell them.
1 person likes this
@LadyDuck (181864)
• Switzerland
9 Nov 17
At $1300 I know I would sell them. You can buy another pair to repair and make as good as those ones.
1 person likes this
@TheHorse (73392)
• Walnut Creek, California
9 Nov 17
If they sound good enough, I might keep them. These speakers are known for their deep bass, and for sounding good on classical music.
1 person likes this
@LadyDuck (181864)
• Switzerland
9 Nov 17
@TheHorse The old speakers were a lot better on classical music, we also have speakers that were built in the 60's.
1 person likes this
@TheHorse (73392)
• Walnut Creek, California
11 Nov 17
@LadyDuck They have that warmth that's necessary to convey what it's like to be in a concert hall. Today, I think I will start oiling the pair of Dynaco A-40 XLs I'm working on. Let me see if I can find an old photo that conveys why I enjoy oiling so much. Dry walnut wood looks light. But when you apply the oil, it becomes dark and lovely.
1 person likes this
@FourWalls (15726)
• United States
11 Nov 17
Good luck with the project. This is one you might want to keep the child laborer away from.
1 person likes this
@TheHorse (73392)
• Walnut Creek, California
11 Nov 17
I don't think he's helped me with this one. So far, it sounds like the fix worked.
1 person likes this
@TheSojourner (17298)
• United States
11 Nov 17
What a wonderful project! I do wish you much luck and great success with it! (Not sure if you have read my posts re: music lately)
1 person likes this
@TheHorse (73392)
• Walnut Creek, California
11 Nov 17
Posts? Music?
1 person likes this
@teamfreak16 (42021)
• Denver, Colorado
9 Nov 17
Gorilla Glue is the best. Good luck.
1 person likes this
@TheHorse (73392)
• Walnut Creek, California
9 Nov 17
I'm listening at low volume right now. Sounds OK.
1 person likes this
@andriaperry (60954)
• Anniston, Alabama
9 Nov 17
Good luck, I am sure the glue will hold.
1 person likes this
@TheHorse (73392)
• Walnut Creek, California
9 Nov 17
So far so good. I listened at low volume last night. Will really test it (them) later today.
@JudyEv (136526)
• Bunbury, Australia
9 Nov 17
Deep breath taken and good luck wished. Hope it goes well and that Gorilla Glue is well-named.
1 person likes this
@TheHorse (73392)
• Walnut Creek, California
10 Nov 17
I'm going to give them a listen now.
1 person likes this
@DaddyEvil (26042)
• Aurora, Missouri
14 Nov
So, how did it come out, pony? I'm sure you did a good job, though.
@kepweng (19124)
• Waikoloa, Hawaii
13 Nov 17
too bad its Expensive!