the Design Your Own Spike thread

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Anthony_Gomez, Dec 10, 2002.

  1. After a little talk with kyle (...again), I decided that I will first toy in the machine shop with making some spikes. If they turn out nice enough, and I can get good pricing on materials, I may be able to turn them out for people[​IMG] I will not try and debate the audibility of decoupling/coupling equipment/speakers, but cool looking spikes make a cool looking speaker look even cooler[​IMG] Heck, that is what veneer is all about[​IMG]
    so...your job, should you decide to take it, is to post up images of what spikes (both isolation for components and coupling for speakers) you think look really cool.
    Also feel free to whip up some simple jpg files using paintbrush [​IMG]
    ..also, what type of material?
    Here is what I can easily get with mcmaster pricing (not including shipping and tax):
    6061 aluminum @ $42.54 for 1.5" rod, 6ft
    7075 aluminum @ $123.56 for 1.5" rod, 6ft
    360 brass aluminum @ $93.10 for 1.5" rod, 6ft
    304 stainless steel @ $124.59 for 1.5" rod, 6ft
  2. Hank Frankenberg

    Hank Frankenberg Cinematographer

    Oct 13, 1998
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    Okay, the Madisound YBSC and YBLC black chrome plated brass spikes, 1.5" and 2.15" long, respectively and both are 1.25" diameter at the top. They're in the on-line catalog: Use the hardest material (Rockwell hardness) to help keep the tips from bending. Tower speaker weight will put lots of psi on four tips. Actually, to keep costs down, don't do the black chrome plating - maybe just get a quote from a plater.
    Bring some prototypes to C.E.S.[​IMG]
  3. Hank, can you recommend a minimum berneli (sp?) hardness? 304SS is 170, 6061 is 90 (iirc), and 7075 is 160. I am not sure about the brass.

    I will have a couple prototypes done (hopefully!).

    One spike that I did like, but can no longer find the close up is on the Wilson Audio speakers.
  4. Hank Frankenberg

    Hank Frankenberg Cinematographer

    Oct 13, 1998
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    No, I can't Tony, just suggesting get the hardest material for reasonable price. I would think that brass is too soft. The chrome plating on the Madisound spikes adds hardness. A hard aluminum alloy should work. For cool looks, you could have a plating shop color anodize them in in blue or red (or black, for that matter) if the price isn't too high.
  5. It all depends on how many I want to make. Anodizing small batches MAY get expensive.

    I will just wait to see how they look without anodizing.

    I actually have the means to anodize here at school, but I really don't want to.
  6. Chris Tsutsui

    Chris Tsutsui Screenwriter

    Feb 1, 2002
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    Yeah I heard it isn't fun to anodize, while laquer painting might also work. (the spikes probably won't have much abuse since it'll be on carpet.)
    Another idea is sand blasting or polishing? Less hazard involved I think. Even brushed aluminum can look nice.
    How about making some hardwood spikes to start out with as prototypes for the shape. I've never done it myself but I think wood would be easier to turn on a lathe. You could then paint the wood, and get a good feel for the form and size.
    I'd probably pick stainless steel or 7075. I wonder how expensive or hard it would be to have a titanium tip added? I've shoped mcmaster for some cheap lathe diamond bits, I wonder how much it would be to make a diamond tiped spike. [​IMG]
  7. Sebastian

    Sebastian Second Unit

    Apr 14, 2002
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    How about powder coating?
  8. Chris, I am actually working on a plan to use a stainless steel tip in a brass spike.
    With the setup that we have in the machine shop, the wood lathe I have is a piece of crap[​IMG] WE have some very serious metal lathes[​IMG] ...even though they are non CNC[​IMG]
    As far as coating, I will leave that as an afterthought.
  9. Brett DiMichele

    Brett DiMichele Producer

    Sep 30, 2001
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    Anodization of Aluminium and Titanium is pathetically
    easy to do yourself at home..
    You need nothing more than a decent 12 volt auto battery
    charger some nitric acid (cleaner) and hydrochloric acid
    (catylist for anodization) and you need some Rit Dye in
    whatever color you choose to anodize the aluminium. Titanium
    on the other hand does not require dye. Titanium naturaly
    oxidizes a color layer on the very surface when current is
    applied while in the acid. Depending on the current you
    get different shades of color between Grey,Gold,Purple and
    As for PowederCoating this is also easy and relatively cheap
    to do yourself. You can buy the HotCoat system from Eastwood
    Automotive ( for less than $200.00 and
    you can MAKE money with that kit!
    As for what materials to use..
    Brass will work well for "Component" spikes for turn tables
    and amps and such.. For Speaker feet a good T6 Alloy will
    work well for that. If you want to use cheap steel a cheap
    rod of 1018 soft steel will work fantasticly and it's dirt
    cheap. But forget getting a good surface finish on that gummy
    junk.. So I would suggest those ones be Powder Coated..
    Then of course you could use $tainless $teel..... [​IMG]

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