Silicon for sealing a driver, big mistake ?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Jones_Rush, Jul 1, 2001.

  1. Jones_Rush

    Jones_Rush Stunt Coordinator

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    I went to Homecenter today in search for some sealing material to use with the Shiva. The salesman said that the only thing he can offer me is a caulk made out of sponge, or a Silicon tube. He recommended the silicon tube. I said to him that the silicon might damage the driver and even if not, it will be extremely difficult to extract the driver if I'll ever need to. He said that this is rubbish, and silicon can't do any harm and in case I want to remove the driver I just need to use a sharp knife to cut the silicon.
    I bought the silicon tube, but before I use it, I just want to be sure I don't make a big mistake.
     
  2. ThomasW

    ThomasW Cinematographer

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    Do not use silicone to "seal" especially if the driver is recessed into the baffle. Silicone becomes a quite permanent glue and it will be a major pain to cut out the driver if removal necessary. This usually ends up trashing either the driver or the baffle board.
    Get some closed cell foam tape. Apply to the back side of the woofer mounting flange.
     
  3. Geoff L

    Geoff L Screenwriter

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    Another to say, no no to the sealer. It will seal for sure, but if you ever need the driver out you will be serious trouble.
    1/4 to 3/8's inch closed cell depending on driver size, door weather striping, "one side sticky", -- or rope caulk 1/8 inch, these are much better choices. More may chime in with other ideas. Both should be available at your local hardware.
     
  4. Mark Wylie

    Mark Wylie Auditioning

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    I've been quite satisfied with rope chaulk. It's easy to apply and you can run a bead around both sides of the mounting screws.
    Mark
     
  5. Jones_Rush

    Jones_Rush Stunt Coordinator

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    What is the difference between open cell and closed cell ?
    (excuse the ignorance)
     
  6. Patrick Sun

    Patrick Sun Moderator
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  7. Jones_Rush

    Jones_Rush Stunt Coordinator

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    I found this nice info at Partsexpress forum
    (made by Paul C), please tell me what you think:
    "When using silicone caulk, be careful if it contain acetic acid (vinegar). You can easily smell the vinegar odor. If you seal up an electonic item with this stuff, the trapped fumes will soon corrode everything inside.
    If caulking seams inside your cabinet, do not install the woofer in a rush to finish, but let it completely cure first.
    There are types of silicone caulk that contain no acetic acid, and these are preferable by far.
    You can make a silicone gasket easily this way...
    Apply a nice bead of silicone caulk around the cutout. On top of this put strips of plastic wrap (Saran Wrap or similar). Now set the woofer in place, and allow it to cure overnight. The next day, remove the woofer, which will NOT have stuck to the plastic wrap. Feel the caulk to be sure it has completely cured. If not, replace the woofer for a while longer. When it is all cured, peel away the plastic, and Voila! A silicone gasket. If there are voids, you can apply more caulk there, and put a piece of plastic wrap over it, replace the woofer.
    Finally, when all is cured, place the woofer into the cutout, and with a utility knife, cut around the edge perpendicular to the baffle and remove the excess silicone."
     
  8. Geoff L

    Geoff L Screenwriter

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    No question this would work, but seems to me that is, an awful lot of work. This could be a good alternative if your driver is counter sunk and you didnt "take it down a little extra" for your foam tape or rope chalk that "most of us" use.
    If you go this route, dont see why it would'nt work well for you. If you ever have to remove the silicon from the "box cutout itself," which no one ever plans to do, it just might happen,,,, that could be a bummer. There was a post a while back speaking to just this and he left a hugh warning to all about useing silicon, as he said, man i screwed up, that will never happen again.
    Most of use like the foam tape or rope chalk for a number of reasons.
    Cheap, quick, fast, and extremly easily removed if ever needed.
    Not trying to steer you away from the silicon, just letting you know what has proven to work well and found very easy to use.
    Geoff
     
  9. Hank Frankenberg

    Hank Frankenberg Cinematographer

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    Closed-cell foam gasket or rope caulk, never silicon caulk.
     
  10. Jin E

    Jin E Second Unit

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    The right type of Silicon works quite well as long as it's not the corrosive type and you do not plan on ever removing the driver from the enclosure. The corrosive stuff is BAD for anything not stainless. It even caused corrosion on some of our Yellow DiChromate parts during testing. Non-corrosive RTV with a decent cure time can be quite expensive though. We use two types at work... one that costs $22 a tube that sets up in about 5 minutes (A GE silicone designed especially for Toshiba) and one that costs $5 a tube (another GE) that take about 30 minutes to skin over and about 5 hours to set up. The corrosiveness of the silicon is a good thing to take into account if you are making a box enclosure and plan on using the silicon to seal your box.
    A good example of a open cell foam is a sponge, the "chambers" in th foam are interconnected... so air or water can pass all the way through the foam. A closed cell foam the "chambers" or cells in the foam are not connected... so water/air cannot pass all the way through the seal. A good example of a closed cell system is the soap bubbles on top of your dishwater.
    ------------------
    -Jin
    My Theater
     
  11. Shade Watson

    Shade Watson Stunt Coordinator

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    Well I sealed both of my Shiva drivers in my vented boxes with silicone caulk. I don't have the tube in front of me to check out any corrosive/non corrosive claims. But I definitely bought whatever was cheapest. Does anyone thing I will have problems?
    Should I tear apart my boxes, if my tube of caulk doesn't say "non corrosive"? That would be a major hassle.
    The only place I used the caulk was to seal in the driver and port.
     
  12. Jin E

    Jin E Second Unit

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    Shade,
    Well... it depends. If you allowed the sealant to cure before you closed the enclosure you won't have any problems. The gases released by the sealant is what is corrosive. The problem will be exaggerated by different temperatures and humidities. I wonder if the sub is vented enough to let all of the harmful gases out? Do you have a lot of corrodible materials in your sub?
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    -Jin
    My Theater
     
  13. Claude M

    Claude M Stunt Coordinator

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    For this I like to use ProGrip Premium Foam Drawer Liner by Husky P/N 34590. Normal use is to protect drawer in tool chest. Available at Home Depot, Sears has a thinner version of the same thing (just as good IMO). The Husky comes in 22 3/4"W X 90"L. It is what the other guys were talking about, a closed cell foam.
     

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