Wooden Headphones

This is a work in progress. Image courtesy of smeggy.

Inspired by this post from Gizmodo, I set out to create my own pair of "Thunderpants" since I didn't think I could justify purchasing a $500 pair of cans. Plus, it's another project! Why not?

I purchased a pair of T-50RP's from Front End Audio (who, by the way, has fantastic customer service...I received a replacement part with zero hassle). At $75, I can't complain. Stock, they're a great pair of headphones already, with fast frequency response and a very even and neutral tone. The mids were a little much but that was easily dealt with by tuning the inside of the plastic housing using foam and mass damping techniques.

Getting a lathe (yes, I bought a lathe just for this project) was no problem using one of my favorite apps: Craigsnotifica. I found a decent one for $100 including a 4-jaw independent chuck and turning tools. Sure, they weren't the greatest tools on the planet but hey, I'll make do.

Exotic wood was a little harder even though ebay has a plethora of exotic blanks. I picked up a block of amboyna burl for $30. I can't really believe how beautiful the wood is, especially since it looks like this when it's actually on a tree.

Splitting the wood and cutting it down to shape

Rubbed some water on the wood to simulate how the varnish would turn out. Amazed at how beautiful it looks!

Turning and sanding down the blank to shape.

Prepping the cups for the first layer of varnish.

I still have to pick out leather to redo the headband, braid the headphone wire, and finish the actual mounts connecting the cups to the headband. Stay tuned for more pictures!


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