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    Thread: Interior Door Panel Removal -- Bass Speaker Broken Wire Repair

    1. 09-15-2009 05:22 AM #1
      Members of the forum,
      I have been a long time, happy Phaeton owner. I have constantly visited this site to find all sorts of answers to my questions, so I am hoping you can help me out here.

      I have recently discovered that my 2 rear and my 1 front (driver's side) bass speakers (large speakers) are not producing any sound. I have confirmed with my Vagcom that the speakers are having issues.

      I took the car to my dealer to have him look at the issue, but they say the speakers are blown. I have had a good bit of experience with blown speakers, and I have never known them to just be totally silent -- they always make SOME kind of noise, just not the right ones .

      Since the blown speakers were "my fault," it will not be covered under my warranty . As such, I have decided to do the repairs myself, and either replace the speakers with aftermarkert, or try to order some matching speakers straight from VW. Either way, I need to get behind the doors to see what needs to be done.

      I have looked at Michael's post about removing the door panels, and it has been very helpful! I have not, however, been able to find the trim removal tool (the one used for the fasteners) anywhere. I am trying to gather some tips about how to successfully remove the fasteners from my door trim without breaking them.

      My question is this: How can I remove the door trim without the special removal tool, or where can I find the tool to order?

      Also, does anyone have a P/N for the Phaeton front & rear bass speakers?

      Thanks,
      Damon Smith

      Archival Note: Here's the post that Damon refers to, which provides an illustrated guide to removing interior door panels. The problem being addressed in this post is keyless access function, but the process of removing the interior door panel also applies when you need to get access to a speaker mounted in a door. See here - Keyless Entry Issues (consolidated discussions)

      Last edited by PanEuropean; 10-07-2012 at 04:40 AM.

    2. 09-15-2009 05:27 AM #2
      Almost forgot to mention: I have found a tool that looks similar to Michael's photo, and may be able to do the job. Any opinions on the following tool?

      EG 12105 listed on http://www.samstagsales.com/vwaudi.htm


    3. Moderator PanEuropean's Avatar
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      09-15-2009 06:51 AM #3
      Quote, originally posted by Apple_Eater »
      How can I remove the door trim without the special removal tool, or where can I find the tool to order?

      Hi Damon:

      The tool is quite generic in nature - it is not a special "Phaeton" tool, although it is a Volkswagen-specific tool.

      I have seen virtually identical tools offered for sale from well stocked Snap-On and Mac Tools trucks. My suggestion is that you print a couple of pictures of the tool, and take them to a Snap-On or Mac Tools distributor. Chances are that the distributor will be able to get you a tool that is functionally equivilent.

      Another possibility is to look for a very large automotive store (bigger than average) and see if they have a similar tool in stock in the body shop supplies section.

      Finally, it is also possible to order the tool via any Volkswagen dealer. It is not a 'secret item' or protected part. Just note the tool identification number, and go to the parts department of a local VW dealer. FYI, Snap-On is the company that makes most of VW's specialty tools, and Snap-On is not cheap. So, be sure you are holding onto the counter when the parts guy tells you the price of the VW tool.

      Michael


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      09-15-2009 06:53 AM #4
      Archival Note: Here's the link to the discussion that Damon referenced, which contains instructions for removing the door panels and a picture of the special tool - Keyless Entry Issues (consolidated discussions)


      Also, below are extracts from the Phaeton repair manual that explain how to remove the driver door panel and the front passenger door panel.

      Michael
      Attached Files
      Last edited by PanEuropean; 06-05-2011 at 07:32 PM.

    5. Moderator PanEuropean's Avatar
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      09-15-2009 06:56 AM #5
      Quote, originally posted by Apple_Eater »
      Almost forgot to mention: I have found a tool that looks similar to Michael's photo, and may be able to do the job. Any opinions on the following tool?

      EG 12105 listed on http://www.samstagsales.com/vwaudi.htm

      That one looks like it might be a bit 'light duty' for the fasteners on the Phaeton door. I think you might be better off with the HAZET 799-5, which is illustrated just a bit further down the page.

      Michael


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      09-15-2009 07:49 PM #6
      Damon,

      I have the same problem regarding the lower speakers on the driver side of the car. The dealership has told me that the amplifier needs to be replaced because they verified the speakers are in fine by measuring resistance through the amplifier wiring harness in the trunk. You might want to see if your dealer has done the same. Apparently, my Phaeton tech has replaced amps on other Tauregs & Phaetons for similar problems & it has solved the situation.

      If you have a 12 channel DSP system like me, the amplifier is not cheap. Additionally, it is located behind the starter battery & I have not yet been able to figure out how to remove it.

      I can get the part numbers for the speakers if you let me know whether you hvae an 8 or 12 speaker system.

      Thanks,
      George


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      09-15-2009 08:41 PM #7
      If the issue is, in fact the amplifier, would your warranty then cover it?

      The reason I ask is that when I did a VAGCOM scan on my car it reported a Mid-Range Bass speaker in the right front door has an open circuit. Frankly, I can't tell, and the stereo still sounds as good as any stock car stereo I've ever heard.

      Nonetheless, if the warranty covers the whole car... and the stereo equipment is not on the exceptions list...

      Bill


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      09-15-2009 09:25 PM #8
      If you're considering after-market speakers, maybe you can look into Dynaudio. They are one of the most natural car- and home-speakers. By the way, they are the OEM supplier for VW's upgraded speaker range. I have a pair at home, and they're phenomenal!
      -Ming
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    9. 09-15-2009 11:03 PM #9
      I have not thought about trying to measure resistance from the amp, I will certainly do that! My vagcom reports open circuit, so I have a feeling that is the speaker itself, but I suppose incorrect reporting is possible.

      I have the 12-speaker DSP system. I have loved it and it actually took me a few months to notice these speakers were out! -- the system is that good. I would certainly like to have it back up to full-steam, however. I am certain my dealership has not checked the resistance, as they are somewhat incompetent and actually lied on the receipt they gave me (said a part was replaced and TESTED, and it doesn't even work!) so I'll be either taking my car elsewhere or doing it myself. Unfortunately, it is a 3+ hour drive to get anywhere that can work on my Phaeton


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      09-16-2009 12:51 AM #10
      I seem to remember someone testing a similar issue by swapping the outputs on the amplifier to verify that it was the amp and not the speakers. I cannot locate that thread at the moment, but I know I have read about that problem.

      It sticks in my mind that Michael replaced his amp, or had his replaced, as well.


    11. Moderator PanEuropean's Avatar
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      09-16-2009 02:18 AM #11
      Correct, I replaced mine, the bass output failed for the front two speakers. There was nothing wrong with the speakers.

      It is a PITA to get the amp in and out of its bracket. I think I wrote an illustrated 'how-to' post, not sure if I put it in the FAQ or not.

      My experience has been that if there are sound problems, the cause is usually the amplifier, not the speakers.

      Michael


    12. 09-16-2009 02:41 AM #12
      Michael,

      Where might I find the amp? I have removed the relay box and originally thought it to be the metallic box located directly behind the relay box, but this appears to be incorrect.

      Do I need to remove the battery to get to the amp? If so, how do I go about doing this?


    13. 09-16-2009 04:35 AM #13
      Many hours later, I have successfully removed the battery. That was the single most difficult thing I have done in my entire life. I snapped some photos of the compartment sans battery, can someone point me in the direction of the amp?

      I was thinking this was the amp

      Here is a picture of the entire battery compartment, so you guys can have an idea of what I am working with

      Michael, can you point me in the direction to the amp? I have already ordered a repair manual, and I am sure it will have the right directions, but I am a bit impatient when it comes to my Phaeton


    14. Moderator PanEuropean's Avatar
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      09-16-2009 05:54 AM #14
      Hello again:

      The item you have photographed above is the battery controller, not the amplifier. The 12 channel amplifier is on the RIGHT side of the car, just forward of the starter battery, more or less in the same general area as the gas cap. It is possible that the 8 channel amplifier is located on the right side of the car, because the repair manual also provides instructions for removing an amplifier from the right side.

      If you are not sure if you have a 12 channel or 8 channel sound system, remove the bin from the left side of the car and have a look outboard and just forward of the battery to see if there is an amplifier installed on the left side... it's easy to see the 12 channel amplifier (on the left side) without any further disassembly.

      Removal instructions for both potential locations are attached below.

      Michael

      Last edited by PanEuropean; 06-05-2011 at 07:06 PM.

    15. Moderator PanEuropean's Avatar
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      09-16-2009 05:59 AM #15
      Here is a photo of the 12 channel amplifier, which is located on the right side of the car (behind the starter battery).

      12 Channel Amplifier
      Last edited by PanEuropean; 06-05-2011 at 07:10 PM.

    16. Moderator PanEuropean's Avatar
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      09-16-2009 06:06 AM #16
      Damon:

      Here's wiring diagrams (for both the 8 channel and 12 channel sound systems) that might help you determine if the amplifier is actually sending a healthy signal out to the various speakers.

      My guess is that you are going to find that the problem is with the amplifier, not with the speakers. So, you might want to hold off on taking any door panels apart.

      Michael
      Attached Files
      Last edited by PanEuropean; 06-05-2011 at 07:35 PM.

    17. 09-16-2009 06:44 AM #17
      Michael,

      Thanks very much for your helpful reply! It's too bad that all my work removing the wrong battery was wasted

      Anyways, I am a bit unsure about how to access the starter battery. Please refer to the following image:

      I am a bit unsure about how to remove this storage area in order to access the battery compartment. I'll try popping it out with a trim removal tool later, but does your Phaeton have something similar to this? I am wondering if the previous owner retrofitted some sort of storage thing instead of the traditional cover.


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      09-16-2009 09:32 AM #18
      That's how they all are (unless there is a DVD player fitted there). To remove the panel you pull with steady pressure at the top of the bin. The clips will release one by one, they are very strong. The motion to remove the panel will be much like opening a door that has hinges at the bottom.

      It is held in place with push-in clips at the top and sides and tabs that fit into the surround at the bottom. DO NOT pry from the bottom edge because you will break the tabs. Once the clips release from the top and sides, the entire plastic storage bin will lift out of the lower surround. This will be possible when the top of the bin has been moved about 45 - 60 degrees inboard from its original position. Replacement is obvious once you have the part in your hand.

      Bill


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      09-16-2009 11:08 AM #19
      Quote, originally posted by 357Sig »
      The clips will release one by one, they are very strong.

      Bill is right - the clips are really strong. So, don't be afraid to give it a good yank at the top.

      Michael


    20. 09-16-2009 12:37 PM #20
      I have removed the amp, and tested with a multimeter the speakers in question. Each of them is an open circuit, as indicated by the vagcom. This (I believe) eliminates the possibility of the amplifier being the source of my problems.

      I believe that the only remaining possibilities are
      1. Wiring fault of some kind, speakers not plugged in, disconnected at "pillar" connector, etc.
      2. Speakers blown

      Does this seem correct to you guys? Would by next step be to remove door panels and inspect the speakers/wiring?

      EDIT: By the way, I have the 12 speaker system, can anyone send me the P/N for the speakers so I can begin shopping? I am starting to suspect the speakers are indeed the problem...



      Postscript added years later: Here's a picture of the most probable cause of a non-functional speaker -

      Last edited by PanEuropean; 10-07-2012 at 04:43 AM.

    21. 09-17-2009 02:28 AM #21
      Michael,
      I am trying to figure out exactly which speakers are needing to be replaced, and am a bit confused by the layout of the Phaeton 12 speaker system.

      Based on this post: http://forums.vwvortex.com/zer...97588
      It appears there are 2 speakers in the lower grille on each front door -- I'm assuming a mid-bass and bass (in accordance with the wiring diagram)
      Is this also the case with the rear doors?

      The reason I ask is that, if there ARE two speakers in each lower grille, then BOTH speakers in my rear doors have malfunctioned. I removed parts of the trim on my rear driver door to try to get at the speaker, and as part of removing the trim, the smaller (midrange? tweeter?) speaker near the locks was disconnected. Now, if I fade music to rear left, there is *no* sound at all. This means that the ONLY speaker correctly functioning in the rear left of my car was the one near the door locks.

      As such, it appears as though that door will need two speakers at least. Is this the case?

      Thanks,
      Damon

      EDIT: I think I just answered my own question. Based on my count, there are 2 speakers in each lower grille in the front -- 4 speakers total. There is one near each door handle -- 8 so far. One in each rear door grille -- 10 so far. Then there are the two additional on the pillars near the windshield in front -- 12 speakers.

      Is this the correct layout for the speakers? If so, I'll do some more testing to see if only my bass or also my mid-bass speakers are blown in the front. Does this mean there are no mid-bass speakers in the rear?


      Modified by Apple_Eater at 11:30 PM 9-16-2009


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      09-17-2009 10:02 AM #22
      Here's the answer to the precise location of all the speakers.

      Where are the 12 speakers?

      (Broken link corrected by Michael)
      Last edited by PanEuropean; 06-05-2011 at 07:19 PM.

    23. 09-17-2009 10:07 AM #23
      Thanks so much for that link, not sure why I couldn't find it myself

      I'll do some more testing with my multimeter to figure out exactly which speakers need work.

      My previous question still stands: Where should I look next, the wiring or the speakers?

      If I can get into the speaker compartments, I think I should be able to test the wiring by simple bridging the positive and negative terminals of the speakers with a strand of wire (after disconnecting all batteries, of course) and then checking for a closed circuit at the amplifier. Does this sound reasonable? If the test is successful, that eliminates all possibilities except the speakers in question being blown, the least desirable outcome


    24. 09-17-2009 11:19 AM #24
      I have re-verified all of my findings with my multimeter given my new knowledge of the Phaeton's sound system, and here is what I have discovered:

      Both treble speakers are reading 3.5 Ohms, as expected
      All four DSP Midrange speakers are reading 13 Ohms, I'm assuming they are higher impedance by design.
      Both DSP Mid-bass speakers are reading 3.5 Ohms.
      One Bass speaker (the one working correctly) is reading 2 Ohms.
      Three Bass speakers (the three noted by the vagcom) are open circuits.

      As such, I can conclude that there is either a wiring issue (given the quality of service from my dealership thus far, I wouldn't put it past them to have disconnected the speakers and not reconnected them -- all the doors with speaker issues are the same doors that had the window motors replaced by the dealership) or the speakers are blown.

      I will be removing the door trim when I obtain a tool to do so, and briding the + and - terminals on the speakers, then testing for impedence again (should be 0 Ohms). If this is true, the speakers are certainly the issue. If the circuit is still open, there is some sort of wiring problem.

      What do you guys think? Does my logic hold water?

      EDIT: I am totally at a loss looking for replacement speakers. As far as I understand, I need a subwoofer with 2 Ohm impedance that is 6 1/2". Is this correct? Anyone else replaced their bass speakers that can give me some help?


      Modified by Apple_Eater at 8:54 AM 9-17-2009


    25. 09-17-2009 07:06 PM #25
      I have removed the door panel and am making progress.

      My next question: Does anyone know how to remove the speakers? I have checked the rear driver speaker and it is indeed problematic. The repair manual says to drill out the rivets, but I am not quite sure what this entails -- I am not excited about the idea of taking a drill to my Phaeton!

      Also, it says to take note of the replacement part numbers for new rivets, but such a number I cannot find.

      If you guys can help me out with the next step, I will be very happy


    26. 09-17-2009 08:05 PM #26
      Fine folks of the Phaeton forum:
      I have an update on the speakers, and also a PSA for the good of all members.

      Upon removing the door panel (what a job!) I tested the contacts directly on the speaker for an open circuit. To my dismay, the circuit was, in fact, open, meaning the speaker was toast. Not being one to quit easily, I decided to toy with the speaker. I pressed on the speaker (driver?) while touching the contact points and I got a beep, indicating a closed circuit. I pressed hard for a few seconds (be careful if you attempt this, it takes some finesse and you must press the right place, mine was near the upper-left of the speaker) and got a solid tone. I have since reconnected the amplifier and reassembled the car (excepting the door panel) and tested the speaker and voila! I now have a working speaker!

      As far as I can tell, something was shaken loose inside the speaker. I choose to attribute this to the remarkable door slamming that has tortured my Phaeton.

      To all Phaeton owners: Feel justified when you cringe as someone slams your door -- they might ruin your speakers!

      I am hoping this is the same problem with the other two bass speakers, I will post my findings tomorrow when I have the energy to remove the other two door panels.

      Thanks so much for your help guys, I couldn't have done it without you!


    27. 09-17-2009 09:31 PM #27
      Another update: This evening, I went to go listen to my radio. As soon as I turned the volume up past 50%, the speaker went out again. I'll see if I can do anything to fix it, but it seems like it really IS blown. Time to go shopping.

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      09-18-2009 12:25 AM #28
      It sounds like you're capable and your troubleshooting skills follow logical paths.

      I imagine you are relieved that the amplifier is not the component requiring replacement. If memory serves, I seem to remember that it is in the range of $700.

      Bill


    29. 09-18-2009 01:07 PM #29
      I just finished removing the front driver door panel and was both pleasantly and unpleasantly surprised with what I found.

      I removed the speaker from the door frame by removing the bolts. Upon closer inspection, I noticed the wires in the speaker appeared to be cut or broken somehow, shown in the following picture:

      The wire appears (to me at least) to have been cut. The wire is not ripped from it's post, but rather cleanly cut about 1/8" from the terminal.

      I have soldered the wire back to it's terminal (not pictured), reinstalled the speaker in the door, and voila! Now I have a speaker that is actually fixed, and I don't think it'll be temporary (I turned it all the way up -- no issues!)

      The wire appears to have simply broken due to the bass hitting very hard. I've had to solder it twice so far, apparently there is a lot of strain on these wires.

      If anyone else has issues with speakers not making any sound at all, DON'T assume it's blown, even if the dealer tells you so, if there is *no sound at all* you may want to check the speaker's internal wiring.


      Modified by Apple_Eater at 1:10 PM 9-18-2009


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      09-19-2009 07:22 AM #30
      Please let us know how your speakers work in the next days.

      I have been amazed/dismayed at the number of people with speaker problems in their Phaeton, and if there is some brittleness to the wiring causing the "blown" speakers it will certainly save a lot in future repairs if the problem you found proves to be common.

      Bravo, for your persistence. But please report the functional outcome.

      Thanks,

      Erick


    31. 09-19-2009 07:56 AM #31
      I have removed the rear driver speaker from it's rivets and run some tests. I realized it did not have the same problem as the other speaker, and there was no way I could fix it, so I took it apart to see what had gone wrong.

      I don't have any pictures, but somehow the voice coil (loops of wire going around the speaker) had been damaged.

      One of the wires in the voice coil had been snapped in half, much like the other wiring in the front speaker. Since this was inside the voice coil, repair would be near impossible (I had to dremmel the casing to bits just to see the voice coil)

      I will update you guys when I find what is amiss with the rear passenger side, and I will likely try to find new drivers to replace the rear two.

      The front driver speaker is still working flawlessly after I soldered it for the second time -- I ran through some bass-intensive songs at max volume with no issues.


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      09-19-2009 10:30 AM #32
      Damon,

      Which tool did you finally get for door trim removal, and where did you get it? You have motivated me to tackle this problem in my car now that instructions have been posted on removing the amplifier.

      Thanks,
      George


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      09-19-2009 11:09 AM #33
      Quote, originally posted by Apple_Eater »
      The wire appears (to me at least) to have been cut...

      No, I doubt very much if it was cut. I have seen the identical problem myself on another Phaeton bass speaker. I've been really busy this week, and not had time to search for the photo (I think I have a photo of it).

      My guess is that the speaker cone moves back and forth through quite a large distance, and it is possible that the wire fails due to vibration.

      Michael


    34. 09-19-2009 11:14 AM #34
      George,
      I just picked up a garden-variety door trim removal tool from my local O'Reilly autoparts store. Here is a link to the product listing on their website:
      http://www.oreillyauto.com/sit...49050

      Other than being awkwardly shaped (very difficult to get it into the fasteners just right) it did the job perfectly -- I didn't break a single fastener.

      Also, if you're looking at tackling the speakers, you will need a powered drill to drill through the rivet, and a rivet kit to replace them when finished.

      I would also advise you to look into purchasing a repair manual from Bentley Publishers -- it has saved me much time and effort (although it is occasionally inaccurate).


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      06-05-2011 07:55 PM #35
      Well - a couple of years have passed since the last post on this subject (directly above), and today, I dropped in to see Willem whilst riding my motorcycle through the mountain twisties of central Netherlands. We took the driver door interior trim panel off his Phaeton to investigate a bass speaker that was not functioning.

      Sure enough, we found the same problem that was previously reported above - one of the wires that leads from the bass speaker cone had fractured (probably from metal fatigue) at the point where it is soldered onto the terminal of the speaker.

      It appears that this is sort of an design error on the part of Blaupunkt, who make these speakers. The speaker wires are soldered onto the terminal, then a small amount of epoxy (the black material) is painted over top of the soldered area. Unfortunately, the epoxy doesn't permit the wire to flex, and after a while, the wire just breaks off due to the back-and-forth movement of the speaker cone. The wire won't move away from the terminal when it breaks, so, if you are in there investigating, very gently poke the wire to see if it is still connected or if it has come loose.

      The repair is quite simple, you just remove the epoxy and re-solder the wire in place. It is easy to remove the speaker from the door to fix it - it is held in place with four screws, and has one quick-disconnect electrical connector on it.

      Be very judicious with solder when you re-attach the wire - you DON'T want to add more solder, and you especially don't want to allow either the existing solder or any new solder to "wick" further up the wire towards the speaker cone. The problem of the broken wire is caused (in the first instance) by too much solder wicking up the wire, which renders the wire inflexible.

      Michael

      Broken Wire (typical) - Front Door Bass Speaker


      Michael & Willem - June 2011, Netherlands
      Please don't send me technical questions via IM - instead, post your questions onto the end of the most appropriate thread in the FAQ, so that everyone can benefit from the answer, and everyone can assist in providing the answer. Thanks, Michael

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