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Carver Speaker Discussions and Questions
When Roadway trucking delivered my Platinum MK.IV's, one magnet had "rolled" 90 degrees onto the ribbon. I had to wait for a new one to be delivered from Carver. I swapped them out myself and have never had a problem since.
The only downfall to the ribbons, are the materials needed to make them function as efficiently as they do, (which we all know ISN'T efficient at all)
The Kapton used is the optimal material to use as high temperature, lightweight membrane. Unfortunately, it does (relax) over time, and will lose it's tension. That is where the (buzz) comes from. Many things can help slow the process, Or speed up the process)
Problem (1) HUMIDITY is the #1 cause of the (buzz) The Kapton can retain a small amount of moisture, which relaxes the material itself... just like getting a sheet of paper wet... you will never get it back to its original form.
Problem (2) are the aluminum traces that are on the Kapton. There are a couple inherent problems with the traces.... Aluminum itself can stress, and crack easily for anyone not familiar with aluminum. Now adding the (heat) that is being generated from the amp... isn't helping much. I have been told by the manufacture of the Kapton ribbon, that at 400w the traces can reach 350 degrees. This is the reason (Kapton) has to be used. Most other materials would just melt. So, of you are jamming on your system REALLY hard some day... just stick the tip of your finger in the hole, and let me know if it's really that hot.
The adhesive that bonds the aluminum to the Kapton, has to obviously hold up to the same temps as the other materials... Here is where you can damage your ribbons the easiest..
Jamming on your system, you will see the ribbon start to (ripple)... the ribbon will start to look like a wave pattern. When this is happening, there is no real problem, your ribbons are nice and hot now... BUT when it stops, that's where your problems will start. As the membrane cools back down, the aluminum trace cools the fastest being aluminum, it can dissipate the heat the fastest. Then the Kapton cools slower than the aluminum, which mean, the aluminum cools 1st, and bonds to the adhesive in 1 place, and the Kapton cools later after the aluminum has contracted, in a different spot. This will cause very small horizontal creases through the aluminum traces, and does become a weak point, and does the rest of the trace, as tension is put on the entire trace then the ribbon parts cool at different speeds...
Just a little helpful info for those who want to know.
The last time my ribbons went south, I actually attempted to identify the issue. I noticed that the section of ribbon that gave off the buzz did appear to be crinkled, and what can only be described as the mistake of a life time, I opened the ribbon and separated the magnets! I'll get back to this in a bit.
So with the ribbon opened I was able to get a close look problem, I was amazed at the simplicity of the design. My question is this, under a careful application of heat (maybe a hair dryer), is it possible shrink and/or tighten the loose Kapton? It certainly looks possible; however I know nothing of the properties of the material.
Well at that time I decide to give it a try, and of course this is where things just got ugly! First I attempted to reassemble the fricken ribbon, and much to my surprise, not matter what I did I could not get the two halves back together. I was amazed at the strength of the magnets, I believe your father quoted that the energy power o the magnets was around 40 pounds per sq. inch. Clearly, anyone attempting this needs some type of rig to properly reassemble the ribbons. In fact I damaged it worst that it was in my attempt. So, off fir repair they went!
If you have a buzz in a ribbon the thing to do is look on the back of your ribbon, there are four rows of screws. The two inside screws are machine screws, the two outsisde rows are woodscrews that hold the ribbon to the panal.
Run the speakers and locate where in the lenght of the ribbon the buzz is by putting you ear about a foot away from the ribbon. You will be able to pinpoint exactly where it is. SNUG UP the machine screws A LITTLE BIT at the piont you have found the buzz, then go one set screw up and down from the buzz and snug them up too. DON`T THINK THE TIGHTER THE BETTER you will start popping magnets and that will more than make your ribbon buzz that will make it non-functional.
If that doesn`t work try GENTLY running your hair dryer over the spot BEFORE you take take it apart, this might work for awhile but is not a true fix,but it could last 6 seconds or 6 years.
YOU should not take a ribbon apart unless you KNOW what your doing, you will just be compounding your troubles.
When all else fails call me.
Its great to be back everyone.
From FrankieD's lips to your ears: Sunfire - a quiet box of endless power.
Sunfire TG-IV/400~7 Amp
Carver SD/A-360 CDP
Active bi-amp: Ashly XR-1001 & 2 Rane PEQ-15s
Main: HotRodded AL-IIIs
Sub: Klipsch RT-12d
Center: Sunfire CRS-3c
Surround: Sunfire CRS-3 (x 2)
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