New speakers-Polk DB-521 up front, Polk DB-501 in back


Information and questions on GL1500 Goldwings (1988-2000)
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JohnUSA
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New speakers-Polk DB-521 up front, Polk DB-501 in back

Post by JohnUSA »



Saturday's project, almost done. Gotta reinstall the dash tomorrow.
Enlarged the front speaker cutout by about another 1/4". Had to really trim the top and bottom edges of the 521's, and trim all four sides of the 510's to make them fit in back.


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bluthundr31
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Re: New speakers-Polk DB-521 up front, Polk DB-501 in back

Post by bluthundr31 »

That "install" looks good John.

What did you do regarding a "blank" panel for the stereo, , , ,or did you keep the original one?

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NOVAwing
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Re: New speakers-Polk DB-521 up front, Polk DB-501 in back

Post by NOVAwing »

JohnUSA wrote:
Sun Oct 07, 2018 12:54 am
Saturday's project, almost done. Gotta reinstall the dash tomorrow.
Enlarged the front speaker cutout by about another 1/4". Had to really trim the top and bottom edges of the 521's, and trim all four sides of the 510's to make them fit in back.


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Your speakers look good and sound good to.

Nice work!

VERY disappointed in the j&m speakers I bought and installed with foam speaker buckets up front. Very muffled and almost no clear highs..

They charge alot but they are just cheap low quality speakers lol.

Wish I had done what you did, but I dont like cutting up almost irreplaceable plastic on the bike. I need to get over that.
NOVAwing
1993 GL1500 Aspencade, restored from 4 years rotting outside.

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JohnUSA
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Re: New speakers-Polk DB-521 up front, Polk DB-501 in back

Post by JohnUSA »

bluthunder--I kept the original radio/cassette player for the time being. Bluetooth and amp in future plans.

NOVAwing--Yeah...here is video of the piece I cut out. I figured if it all went wrong, I'd use ABS glue and put the piece back in.. :lol:



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And, here are a few more videos:

Here is how far out the tweeter sticks out. When the grill is back on, there is about a 3/16" clearance due to the outward curve of the speaker grill:


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Here is the back side of the dash, and how much it had to be hacked up to fit the new speaker:


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Miscellaneous, fine tuning for the speed nuts..1 of 2:


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2 of 2:


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I had to cut off the top and bottom edges of the speaker frame off. The outer edge of the speaker is rubber, and is glued to the frame. So, by cutting off the top and bottom edges, I cut away part of the outer edge of the speaker. So, the thought was to use liquid rubber to ensure the rubber edge does not come away from the frame. Also, cover up the cut edge, help keep it from rusting.



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Bluewaterhooker0
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Re: New speakers-Polk DB-521 up front, Polk DB-501 in back

Post by Bluewaterhooker0 »

Seeing the surgical procedure you had to perform, it makes me that much happier that I managed to find, and buy a spare set of DB-501's for my front end. I already have them in the front and have been very happy, but was concerned I may need to replace them in the future, with no replacements available. So, I bought them now, while the getting was good.
I see there are still 10 pairs for sale on Amazon, if anyone is looking. They've been out of production for a while. They are $63, but require virtually no bike surgery for installation, and sound great, or as good as you'll get from the enclosure provided by Honda.
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Happytrails
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Re: New speakers-Polk DB-521 up front, Polk DB-501 in back

Post by Happytrails »

Speakers sound nice.
Last edited by Happytrails on Sun Oct 07, 2018 11:22 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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JohnUSA
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Re: New speakers-Polk DB-521 up front, Polk DB-501 in back

Post by JohnUSA »

Yeah, I had those up front originally. And, I just noticed I've been calling them 510's...ooops...

Yes, the 501's go in smooth as butter. I wanted something a little "punchier".

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Bluewaterhooker0
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Re: New speakers-Polk DB-521 up front, Polk DB-501 in back

Post by Bluewaterhooker0 »

Was there a noticeable improvement over the 501s ? We're only talking 1/4-1/2" size increase. I've found the enclosure, or lack of it, to be the major determining factor on audio quality in the front and rear.

JohnUSA
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Re: New speakers-Polk DB-521 up front, Polk DB-501 in back

Post by JohnUSA »

Yeah, there is a difference. I get more sound with the volume turned up less, if that makes sense.

curlew52
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Re: New speakers-Polk DB-521 up front, Polk DB-501 in back

Post by curlew52 »

Ok, I got a little lost in the translation on the Polk speaker thread! Is the recommended speaker for fronts Polk DB-501? Original posting said Polk DB-521 for front, DB-501 rear! Sounded like the 501’s mount on the front as well! Want to make sure before purchasing! Thanks

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DenverWinger
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Re: New speakers-Polk DB-521 up front, Polk DB-501 in back

Post by DenverWinger »

DB-401's fit the front perfectly but are getting hard to find. So this thread is about using DB-521 as a substitute.
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curlew52
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Re: New speakers-Polk DB-521 up front, Polk DB-501 in back

Post by curlew52 »

Ok thanks! Got it! Just so happens that one of my fronts has been out so this advice has been timely! Thanks!

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Re: New speakers-Polk DB-521 up front, Polk DB-501 in back

Post by JohnUSA »

curlew52 wrote:
Thu Nov 01, 2018 6:57 am
Ok thanks! Got it! Just so happens that one of my fronts has been out so this advice has been timely! Thanks!
The 501's are a 99.8% plug and play up front. I actually had the 501's mounted up front to start with, and then decided to murder the plastics and wedge in the 521's.

You have to cut out the outer edge of the screw holes. Change them from a round hole to a "u"...
http://goldwing.eurekaboy.com/stereoupgrade10.jpg

Diagonal cutters, wire cutters, or snips are your friend on this one...leave the dremel in tool box. It's a light metal, cuts out very easy.

You'll also need eight washers. #4's, if memory serves correctly. I took the mounting bolt down to my hardware store that sells bulk, and picked eight out of the bin.

Tip for removing dash: This caused a big slow down for me. Meaning, these clips on the vents hold the dashboard to the frame, and have to be depressed to allow the dash to come free.
https://www.goldwingfacts.com/forums/ga ... 000001.jpg

From the backside, those vents are covered by a vent plenum. I was able to move it just a bit to get the tip of a long screwdriver under the clip to help release it's grip on the dash frame.

After reviving some Navy language from a distant past, I discovered that taking out the turn signals gave me a pretty good access to facilitate the removal of the vents. YMMV.

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Re: New speakers-Polk DB-521 up front, Polk DB-501 in back

Post by WingAdmin »

JohnUSA wrote:
Thu Nov 01, 2018 8:06 am
curlew52 wrote:
Thu Nov 01, 2018 6:57 am
Ok thanks! Got it! Just so happens that one of my fronts has been out so this advice has been timely! Thanks!
The 501's are a 99.8% plug and play up front. I actually had the 501's mounted up front to start with, and then decided to murder the plastics and wedge in the 521's.

You have to cut out the outer edge of the screw holes. Change them from a round hole to a "u"...
http://goldwing.eurekaboy.com/stereoupgrade10.jpg

Diagonal cutters, wire cutters, or snips are your friend on this one...leave the dremel in tool box. It's a light metal, cuts out very easy.

You'll also need eight washers. #4's, if memory serves correctly. I took the mounting bolt down to my hardware store that sells bulk, and picked eight out of the bin.

Tip for removing dash: This caused a big slow down for me. Meaning, these clips on the vents hold the dashboard to the frame, and have to be depressed to allow the dash to come free.
https://www.goldwingfacts.com/forums/ga ... 000001.jpg

From the backside, those vents are covered by a vent plenum. I was able to move it just a bit to get the tip of a long screwdriver under the clip to help release it's grip on the dash frame.

After reviving some Navy language from a distant past, I discovered that taking out the turn signals gave me a pretty good access to facilitate the removal of the vents. YMMV.
I could have saved you some frustration and foul language - the entire dash disassembly procedure is shown (with pictures) as part of this how-to, and it includes the things you figured out through trial and error: viewtopic.php?f=14&t=10998

tsandvik
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Re: New speakers-Polk DB-521 up front, Polk DB-501 in back

Post by tsandvik »

What did you use to enlarge the speaker holes.

I am doing mine right now and everything I have tried with my Dremil has been a terrible mess and no quality at all.

JohnUSA
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Re: New speakers-Polk DB-521 up front, Polk DB-501 in back

Post by JohnUSA »

I used my dremel. It does make a mess, and it's not pretty. Go slow, make small, measured cuts until you get what you need.

I used the 1 1/2" plastic cut off wheel. Obviously it wants to cut a straight line. So, I made a little cut, followed by another at just a slight angle, following the general outline of of a circle.

Did you see my video of what I cut out?
viewtopic.php?f=6&t=45421&p=304667#p304667

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Re: New speakers-Polk DB-521 up front, Polk DB-501 in back

Post by WingAdmin »

I just use a standard Dremel cutting bit, and use two hands with a very tight grip to control the cut. The slower, the better.

https://www.amazon.com/Dremel-561-Multi ... ef=sr_1_18

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PunWinger
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Re: New speakers-Polk DB-521 up front, Polk DB-501 in back

Post by PunWinger »

Nice job, John!

The PO of my Wing installed 4-1/2" coaxials and bent the top and bottom rims in to fit behind the dash bezel. Where it was bent, the surround separated from the rim and the speaker was bassless. ;) I chose to rebuild what he had cut out and installed Polk DB-401s because I didn't want to waste money on ruining another pair of speakers by "making them fit". I see Polk has DB402s now. I don't know anything about them, but would try replacing with these if I ever needed or wanted to. I saw a post somewhere in these forums where the poster got a 4x6 to fit in that little area! That's what I want! Putting them in the side pods of the fairing just never "did it" for me. I'll have to go hunt that one down. The sound system also needs a good subwoofer, and a crossover and driver. I guess I'll worry about all of that when I get a decent system! :lol:

Just my 2 cents!
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