Virus System Build

As you may have gathered from the VSS history page, we have been influenced by exposure to Jamaican culture in the UK throughout the 1980’s to present day. After attending many Reggae “Blues Parties”, as they were called at the time, we marvelled at the hand built sound systems that these crews put together.

We started hand building the first VSS in 1999 but have since sold on that system on to another Melbourne crew a few years back. So this time around, we have tried to produce a written summary and visual record of the processes involved in making a sound system. From the planning, to procurement of materials and the actual building of the timber boxes. Nowadays, obtaining information on building systems is much easier due to internet access, unlike when we started, it was uncommon to find books on the shelf on the subject. Firstly we’ll concentrate on planning. Selecting equipment is a very personal choice, choices that derive from budget constraints, personal preferences and experience.

18 Sound 21″ 4th Order manifolded bandpass enclosure design

Firstly, we scoured the internet and a good resource to start is Free Speaker Plans. Check out the site from this link:

We looked at the more modern designs, as they are generally more efficient than older designs with smaller enclosures. Especially now as a crew, we are now the older ladies, gentlemen and non binary persons about town! As a result of our recent choices, these “18 sound boxes” are somewhat lighter and easier to lift! We were interested in the bandpass design from 18 Sound originating in Italy. These are drivers not cheap, but deliver high power and we used the enclosure design suggested by them. Check it out here:

So pieces of 19mm non structural ply were cut and used in this 21″ subby design. I cut all of these designs with a jigsaw! It can be cut with accurate Festool cutting systems, as well as CNC programmed cutting. Measured pre- drill holes were marked 8.5mm away from the edge every 100mm, where 2 pieces of timber that touch in the enclosure. This gives a super rigid structure. I put the boxes together dry first to make sure all parts fit. Or if not, then i adjust angles using a planer. then take it fully apart and then use PVA wood glue to reassemble.

So the next design of 15″ scoops for low/low mid range we used a design from a book called “Fane loudspeaker and enclosure design” but here are the links available do download:

So now we come to the high mids enclosure boxes, again we chose the Fane design again but slightly altered dimensions.

Now we come to the tops that are loaded with 2′ compression drivers.