Posted 2013-04-07 9:06 PM (#134402) Subject: 6.5" Front Speaker Install
Posted from the 6 1/2" speaker thread, hope this helps a few people.
Well, here are most of the challenges I dealt with during the install:
First, if you are not reasonably proficient using cutting tools and comfortable cutting plastic off of your bike then don't do this project.
Second, I do not claim to be an expert in any form or fashion. Im just an audio guy and good sound is very important to me.
Third, you can damage your bike doing this install. There are fuel lines on one side and wires on the other.
Fourth, If I were to do it over again I would probably just do a surface mount on top of the grill and call it good.
Last, I am not responsible for any aspect of this that goes wrong.
Now that that is out of the way. It sounds really good with the Polk DB6501 fronts, Polk DB5251's in the rear and the Alpine PDX-F4 monster cranking 100 watts per channel. Hmm, I wonder if i can get 5x7's in the rear???
Yes, it was definitely worth it to me but it took all day. I had the turn signals out via Dain's instructions ( which were spot on!) because I also installed clear turn signals. That was good anyway for working space during this install. I removed the stock speaker enclosures and replaced them with 5.25" boom mats off of Amazon. First I placed the speakers on the vics cutouts wrong side out to trace the outline with a silver marker. Always know what is behind any area you are cutting and clear away wires, fuel lines, etc.. I tried to cut a slot near the flange hoping to wedge it in the slot instead of butchering the enclosure. That did not work, so i got out the Rotozip and started carefully cutting and fitting each step of the way. I wound up cutting all but about a 1/2 - 3/4 inch out on the outer sides of the opening. You will need to cut all tabs and protrusions off the flange area.
There are some very important things to keep in mind during all of the cutting.
1. MAKE SURE YOU KNOW WHAT IS BEHIND WHERE YOU ARE CUTTING!!!!
2. Make sure you leave enough structure to bolt the speaker into.
3. Take your time, be patient, cut a little then try the fit. Repeat, repeat, repeat.
4. Make your outside cuts on an inward angle to help seat the speakers near the gauges.
5. Make sure you have enough clearance for woofer excursion. You dont want the rubber surround on the speaker to slap the rear of your plastic speaker covers. This will sound bad and eventually trash your rubber surround.
I used a rotozip multibit for the rough cuts and a Dremel with a quick locking collet and cutting wheel made for plastic for the finer cuts. I forgot about my Ridgid multi-tool and I am sure it would have worked well too. Then I had an air sander to smooth the edges out.
It is helpful to re-install one side of the plastic vic speaker cover to see what kind of clearance you need to work toward. You will have to keep checking the speaker fit during the cuts to see what needs to be trimmed.
I will have to check the exact size of these woofers but this is absolutely the biggest speaker that you can get in here. I am pretty sure it was roughly 6 1/4 to 6 3/8. I cut all the way to the tank fairing on the bottom and all the way to the bottom of the gauge visor on the top (no idea what its called). There was not any more room vertically. I had to expand toward the outside on both sides a bit. I also found it helped to make sure I cleared the supporting web structure more behind the outer opening.
I had to rotate the speakers around a little prior to installing the boom mat to get an idea of where to screw it in. Install the boom mat after you drill a drain hole then pull your speaker wire through. Make sure you solder the connections on the speaker terminals. The inside two screws were pretty easy but the outsides were not. On the outside I used some 1.5" screws with washers and nuts. There is some webbing structure that I went between with the screws to put a large washer for the webbing gap then stepped it down to the right size. It worked fine and should hold the speakers well. If you can do fiberglass that would be ideal for a winter project. Just cut most of it out and glass it in with a ledge to screw into. You will need to find a happy medium when tightening the screws and/or bolts to find the best flush location. What I found was that I had to have the outside edge of the speaker frame flush with the flat area on the Vic that is surrounding the speaker.
I am sure I am missing some things but that is the majority of what it takes to chop off a bunch of plastic and drop in some bigger speakers.
I hope this helps the few people that may attempt it, let me know if I can help you along in any way.
Other than all of that just put it back together and start rocking!