Best way to clean speaker cones?

Discussion in 'Speakers & Subwoofers' started by Steve Griswold, Jul 3, 2003.

  1. Steve Griswold

    Steve Griswold Stunt Coordinator

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    I just got another pair of Rogers DB101's in the mail today, and since they're new they have some residue on the cones. What do I use to clean them off?

    I'm pretty sure the cones are polypropylene so I suppose I could use water but I'd rather not. I heard Armorall protectant is good to use. Any other suggestions?
     
  2. Chris Tsutsui

    Chris Tsutsui Screenwriter

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    Before I take my treated paper cones for a demo, I touch them up with some Armorall or 2001 finish. It adds a glossy shine/protective film to the cones, and doesn't audibly affect sound. I put it on the rubber surrounds, and make sure it coats the cone as well. Then I gently wipe it off with a dry terry cloth and it shines like new.

    Been doing it to my Tempest in my Car and the driver is exposed to direct sunlight every now and then. Since I kept adding armorall to clean and protect it, the driver still looks and performs like brand new.
     
  3. Kevin C Brown

    Kevin C Brown Producer

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    Chris- Armor All?

    The problem with Armor All, and I used to use this stuff on/in my car too, is that once you start using it, you have to keep using it, or else the polymer compounds in the material you're treating it with will start to break down. (There was even an article on this in some car magazine or maybe even consumer reports a long time ago. People with vinyl dashes started to complain about cracks in the dash after using it.) And I would never personally use this stuff on anything made with paper.

    I'd use either compressed air, or a very careful hand with a feather duster to clean a speakers cone material.
     
  4. Geoff L

    Geoff L Screenwriter

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    Kevin speaks the truth!

    Do not use Armoral unless you plan to continue to use ritualistically. The chemical make up of Armoral is known to promote material rott on especially rubber, foam and vinyl.
    YES the very things it's supposed to be protecting.
    Interesting hey!

    I owned and ran a large detail shop for over 4 years and used about every product known, including stuff not available to the general public. We discovered this on customers vehicles when noticing premature rubber rott on tires and dashes.

    About 3 years ago, Armoral changed some of it's chemical make up in their product. Though it helped, the problem still exists.

    We did some research (calling other detail shops/Internet searches) and found exactly what Kevin made mention of, the damn stuff was promoting premature rott of the very things we were trying to protect. Especially any type of Rubber...
    Vendors of other protection products brought research data in to us that back this up, of course their trying to sell us on their products.

    A Google search will bring up some interesting reading material on just what Kevin and I are saying about Armoral Protectent.

    Regards
    Geoff
     
  5. MarkO

    MarkO Second Unit

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    As a rule of thumb its not a very good idea to use any cleaner/protectant that contain petroleum-based ingredients, such as Armour all on vinyl, rubber, plactic, etc.
     
  6. Alex F.

    Alex F. Second Unit

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    Steve:

    I suggest contacting the loudspeaker importer and/or manufacturer for advice.
     
  7. Steve Griswold

    Steve Griswold Stunt Coordinator

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    I'd love to. Could you please help me figure out how to contact a company that no longer exists? Thanks. [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  8. Chu Gai

    Chu Gai Lead Actor

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    John Edwards?
    Armour All is an aqueous dispersion of a polymeric silicone containing some surfactants (to keep the silicone dispersed) and maybe UV inhibitors. I think so long as you don't make it a weekly practice you're pretty safe. I'd probably begin with using a gentle stream of air to clean it out as much as possible.
    BTW, what, if I may ask, did you pay for those per pair?
     
  9. Kevin C Brown

    Kevin C Brown Producer

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    The problem with Armor All is the solvents that are also included.
     
  10. Chu Gai

    Chu Gai Lead Actor

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    There aren't any. No butyl acetate, no cellosolves, no hydrocarbons, no solvents.
    Note the following MSDS where the health hazards would be far more were solvents present. It's pretty innocuous stuff.
     
  11. Kevin C Brown

    Kevin C Brown Producer

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    Chu- Water is a solvent. [​IMG] The "universal" solvent. Tell me, what happens when you wet a piece of paper, and then it dries? It certainly does not maintain it's original shape.

    I would defer to the original speaker manufacturer's recommended way of cleaning.
     
  12. Steve Griswold

    Steve Griswold Stunt Coordinator

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    Chu Gai - Two of the pairs I got brand new for $300 shipped together. The third pair, which I got used on Ebay, I got for about $165 shipped. The third pair seems to already have a liberal coat of Armorall or something of that sort on the cones. In addition they're very much worn in -- the sound is distinctly richer than the other two.

    As of now I have 3 pairs for front/center, each pair hooked up in serial to be nice to my receiver. I might end up getting rid of a pair or two as I'll be getting some hand-me-down Infinity Prelude front speakers soon [​IMG]


    Kevin C Brown - As much as I'd love to follow the manufacturer's cleaning suggestions, as I mentioned before in this thread, Rogers went out of business in 1999 or 2000.
     
  13. Kevin C Brown

    Kevin C Brown Producer

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    I imagine then that you could probably contact *any* speaker manufacturer as to their recommendations. (A lot of them do use the same drivers.) I'd be extremely surprised though if any of them suggested Armor All...
     
  14. Alex F.

    Alex F. Second Unit

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    Steve:

    Sorry, I didn't know that Rogers ceased operations. Heavens, they were in business for what seems like forever.

    I did a bit of research and it appears that Rogers' last North American importer, Rocelco (Ontario, Canada), is still alive, although selling other products of course. Perhaps they have an employee there who can help you, or maybe refer you to someone who can. They're closed for vacation through July 25, but their e-mail is [email protected]. Their telephone numbers are 800-387-9101 or 905-738-0737. The website is hi-fidelity.com.

    Good luck.
     

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