The Decimator

1/10th the power with all the spunk!

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I was going for a simple look ("early 20th century tool"), and I think I did pretty well. The box is just 1" x 6" clear pine butt-jointed & doweled together, with a screw on each joint for good measure (and because I didn't feel like waiting for glue to dry!). The pine is sprayed with an oil stain.

The back panel is 1/2" x 6" clear pine and the baffle is a piece of 1/4" plywood scrounged from the basement. The handle would normally go on a cabinet door, but was perfect for this job, as the Decimator is very light.

The grille cloth is left over from some speaker cabs I built last year.

Here's a view that shows a few more construction details and the priceless ($2.97, actually) Radio Shack speaker.

The picture's cropped a little tight, but it shows an interesting accidental feature of the Decimator: when it's upside-down, the handle gives it a nice tilt! The chassis is heavy enough to make it pretty stable in this position...

You can also just barely see the cheap plastic/carpet glides in this shot, too.

The Decimator was my first experience with a steel chassis. I have access to a combination cutter/roller/brake at work, so I picked up a $3 sheet of 22ga steel and had some fun with it. It was actually enough material for two of these, so I was able to do a practice run with the brake before having to commit on the real thing.

Then came the layout, drilling & punching cycles. Careful observers will notice what I call the "bum hole" next to the larger tube in these photos — I was seriously bummed when I made that mistake, but I managed to work around it by simply rotating the tube socket. Fortunately, that was the only drilling error.

I used a wire brush attachment on the Dremel to add a bit of shine to the front & back.

This shot shows how I squeezed it all into an 8" x 4.5" x 2" chassis.

I was initially dreading laying out this circuit, but once I figured out the power section layout the rest pretty much fell into place, with some room to spare. Doubling up the terminal strips on both ends of the big caps gave me even more lugs than I needed.

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Copyright © 2001-2002 Mark Lavelle. All rights reserved.