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Homebrewed Headphone Amp Shows Off DIY Resin Casting Process

Although the guts of this DIY build are worth checking out in their own right, what really caught our eye was the beautiful resin cast case surrounding the build as it’s something that could be adapted to a wide variety of projects.

Over at the electronics blog Runaway Brainz they were looking for a slick way to encase an amp project. Rather than go with a project box or similar construction, they did a resin pour and then sanded and polished the resulting encasement. The results are stunning and turn the electronic guts of the amp into a work of art.

Freeform Headphone Amp [via Make]

Jason Fitzpatrick is warranty-voiding DIYer and all around geek. When he's not documenting mods and hacks he's doing his best to make sure a generation of college students graduate knowing they should put their pants on one leg at a time and go on to greatness, just like Bruce Dickinson. You can follow him on if you'd like.

  • Published 04/12/12

Comments (7)

  1. Anonymous

    Cool!

    Er,… Hot!

    (Read the article.)

  2. Nick

    Absolutely gorgeous! Very well done

  3. r

    very sleek !

  4. LadyFitzgerald

    Before I even read the article, I wondered about heat on the components, especially the electrolytics and the IC. I’ve used casting resin in the past (before most of you were born!) and that stuff can get smoking hot!

    Being the anal old bi…broad I am, I would be bothered by the legs, used by the author to keep the circuitry “floating” above the bottom, protruding to the surface. One trick would be to pour a base, let it cure, set the circuitry on top, then finish the pour. However, that will leave a plane showing where the layers meet. One common way around that is to pour an opaque base, let it cure, set the object being encapsulated on top, then finish the pour. The results are not as desireable as a contiguous pour, however.

    Another way to avoid having legs protruding to the surface of the cube might be to suspend the circuitry by securing the outside faces of the jacks to the end walls of the mold, perhaps by using a double stick tape of some kind. The tape would also help to keep the resin out of the jacks.

    The breadboardless circuitry used by the author was a work of art! The layout, especially the attention to symmetry, was amazing!

  5. r

    @LadyFitzgerald

    Yup, heat produced by laminating resins can get rather hot depending on the thickness of the cast & resin to catalyst ratio curing time. Well, as far as cost is concerned, it’s a relatively inexpensive project here. The only way to know for sure is to try. I’m sure many people have attempted something similar with both success & failure …even before you were born :)

  6. Aelean

    Hmm, yea probably wouldn’t work too well as a full tower case unless you were wall mounting with holes in the back for air flow.

  7. boocat

    This is lovely.

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