View Full Version : beginning the long road to new tunes..

11-02-2009, 08:55 PM
well, started hacking up the boat today. missing one amp, deck and all the wiring yet, but it'll all be here in the next week or so..
final system will be:
kenwood kmr-700u head unit
rockford punch 400.4 4ch amp running 6 skylon rubicon ib125 inboat speakers
rockford punch 500.2 2ch amp running 4 bullet hollow point hlcd's in the tower
rockford punch p500.1bd mono amp running a jl 12w6v3 sub

replacing all the wiring and rca's while at it, as the factory stuff is kind of patched together as you will see from the sub connections..

soon to be gone:

pic of the original sub location:

my first dilemma. skiers built a makeshift fiberglas sub box for the kenwood sub. problem is that the floor inside is below the main floor of the boat just cutting the front/back out won't work. you can also see the mess of cables that run through the middle of the "box". it's the main power cables for the dash, the heater hoses, the steering cable and some other misc wires. this "box" is also open to the front ski locker ballast compartment. not sure why, but interesting...
going to have to dream on this one. would be nice if the heater was gone and the floor was level. tons of room under there and could probably fit a pair of 15's and not even be to the bow seatback yet.
let the cutting begin wed. night


11-03-2009, 12:49 AM
Keep us posted and pics as well. I'm doing the same thing to my boat this winter with total stereo system upgrade! I have the exact delima with what to do with driver's kick panel. I'm cutting er out too :)

11-09-2009, 09:18 PM
got back to it this afternoon.
cut out the old box and trimmed back all the fiberglass. next will be to move the wiring and steering cable that are in the way and start measuring/mocking up the sub box. good thing skiers left plenty of cable to move it around. not really sure why they didn't run it up one side or the other, but oh well...


here's the bad boy going in the box. jl 12w6v2 dual 4ohm vc. going to run it to the rockford amp in a 2ohm mono configuration.. sucker is heavy :)
ordered a sheet of medex from my lumber supplier today. should start cutting thursday night...


11-09-2009, 10:07 PM
Looking forward to seeing how you will fab up the box. Cool project!

11-09-2009, 11:16 PM
Wow someone finally did it!!!
Good luck and keep us posted on your progress.
May I suggest something to the guys that want to do the same thing? Instead of cutting the carpet away, peel it back as far as you can from the top of the foot rest. This will allow you to have a seamless peice of carpet when you put it all back together. Unless of course you don't plan on filling it all back in.

11-09-2009, 11:18 PM
Sorry here's some other pics.

11-09-2009, 11:22 PM
agree, but mine already had the 12" cut into the carpet. I'm going to fab a cover piece over the sub box. there will be a seam at the base, but hopefully it'll disappear..
if you don't have a sub installed, it's pretty easy to pull the carpet back and save it. mine pulled back in one piece even with the hole cut.

11-17-2009, 01:23 PM
got the speaker box done finally. had to build it a little odd due to the wiring/plumbing that I could not relocate without tearing out the entire wiring harness to the engine and the heater plumbing. oh well. still works..
going to pick up the plexi this morning for the false carpeted front and the bedliner-in-a-can to spray the box. making it somewhat water resistent and then going to raise it up 3/4" off the carpeted floor in the front for drainage..
hoping to be installed on sunday then I'll begin installing the amps and wiring everything.


everything moved to the side and power/ground have been rerouted for the main circuit panel.


11-17-2009, 10:18 PM
Looks good! How many cubic ft of air space did you need for that sub?

11-17-2009, 10:41 PM
I like it.......are you going to screw it to the front of the large gaping hole from inside the box or how are you planning on attaching it? I guess I should just wait and see your later pics. I'm just not that patient :)

11-17-2009, 10:44 PM
1.25 was optimal. did the math over and over and I think I'm close. got it a little oversize, but the bracing I added in the front took a little away.. I have owned jl stuff in the past and was very happy with it, but I really think this sub is going to be overkill in the boat. didn't realize it until I opened the box. oh well..
they say if it's too loud, you're too old, and I don't feel old yet :)

viking, going to install the box by bolting it from the back and bottom, then install the front, then the sub, but after it's all rhinolined. I'll screw the front on, probably take around 25-30 screws, then cover them with a final coat of rhinolining. did the extra bracing on the front so I can run a bead of glue around the edges, then a thick bead of silicone around the inside bracing to seal the front real good.

11-28-2009, 06:54 PM
got the box installed today. bummer as the local shop does not have a speaker grill for the w6, so waiting for them to order one. hoping to have it all buttoned up next saturday.
waiting for knukonceptz order for the rest of the power wire and speaker wire to start amp/speaker installs. lots should happen next weekend.
built the box up on plastic blocks to keep it out of water. it's def. as solid as the footwell box I cut out.
yea, got a little overspray on the carpet, but the new carpeted front I'm making will cover it... :)

11-29-2009, 04:00 PM
well, since I still don't have any wire, decided to see how close the hollow points are to fitting into the roswell cans. not even close.. had to shave around 1/8" off the lip of each can. the metal is VERY soft and likes to buckle wherever there's no weld. advice is to use a good metal cutting blade in a jigsaw, and replace the blade after 2 cans. worked well for me..

just need wire now :)

hollow points fit in nicely, with around 3.5 inches behind each speaker for the crossover and a little bit of batting. replacing all the speaker wire up the tower. skiers uses decent stuff to the roswell cans, but the wire in the cans looks like 20gauge and it's crap.

12-04-2009, 07:25 PM
well, here the box all covered up and sub installed. it's not perfect, but I like the way it came out. can't wait to fire it up and hear it..
probably not until next weekend, but it's getting close.. still have some wiring to tuck back up, but waiting to install a new deck at the same time....


here's the roswell cans back installed waiting for me to finish running new wire for the hollow points.. notice the stack of marine grade plywood in the corner against the window. pontoon rebuild arrives in 2 weeks :)


the mess of factory wire I cut out when removing the stock kenwood amps. there's more to come, but this is the start...


12-04-2009, 09:35 PM
hollowpoints installed.


12-05-2009, 12:39 AM
Looking good. I'm still rounding up all my parts and trying to figure out how install my sub? I've got lots of winter left to get it done. But looking at all these posts I'm chomping at the bit to tear into something.

Keep us posted!

12-05-2009, 05:14 PM
amps mounted and some of the wiring ran. not clean yet, but it will be..


fuseblock and groundblock locations. will clean up some of the wiring once I put batteries back in next spring..


knukonceptz has some awesome products and have been very happy with the quality of the wiring products so far. will def. use again, not to mention they are the only ones I could find that make a 1/0 input and 3 fused 4gauge output block. everyone else is either 8gauge output or has 2 or 4 fused leads....

12-06-2009, 01:12 PM

Looking good! Great job on the sub install especially the false front. Looks factory.

How much can depth is needed to accommodate the hollow points?


12-06-2009, 06:26 PM
well, just pulled the plug on 3 sets of the db651's the skylon's don't fit in my supra. not enough room at the cutouts. hoping the db's are a dropin...


12-06-2009, 11:57 PM
Looks good man! Def give us some feedback on those hollowpoints and the rest of the system when you get it going!!

12-07-2009, 07:45 AM
Looks really good Sandm. I was worried when i saw that huge cut out you made for your sub, you got stones man LOL.

System is looking realy good and tight man. Waiting on the rest of the updates and a to hear what you think it sounds like.

12-07-2009, 09:28 AM
I was worried too. surveyed that area for the better part of 3 hours before making the plunge to cut it out. mostly worried about structural parts, but doesn't look like that's a real factor, since the other side doesn't have the hump, and it's bonded real well to the hull with adhesive.

guess if I ever sell the boat, the hard part is done should someone decide to update/upgrade the sub.

02-05-2010, 01:47 PM
posted up here a while ago that I finished the install, but it was deleted during one of the weekends that the site crashed, so here ya go....

finally got it all installed. system basically followed the outline listed in the first post, except the skylons in the cabin didn't fit, so went with the polk db651's. they were a drop-in fit and took less than 1hr for all 6. longest time was soldering the wires to the connections.. easiest part of the upgrade by far..


this is about as clean as the wiring is going to get. def. not as neat as some of the car systems I have done, but with the limited space and the fact that it's buried in the nose of a storage cubby, really doesn't have to be iasca-perfect. it's clean and easy to trace and that's what matters. hate the fact that the rca's are so close to power, but I don't notice any noise.


added 2 volume controls. one controls the onboard bass processor of the rockford sub amp. doesn't vary the volume, but the impact of the sub. handy when going from a track that seems a little lite in the low end to a hip-hop track that is bass-heavy. second control is a simple pac lc3 gain for the tower amp. the bullets really project and don't think that the rest of the lake wants to listen to my music when we are just parked, so we have the ability to cut signal to the tower speakers when parked..


02-05-2010, 01:49 PM
here's the transom remote installed:


and a pic of the display of the remote working.. funny thing. crutchfields site states that the old remotes will work with the new deck, but they are wrong. if you are going to upgrade to the new kenwood ipod/usb deck I did, you must replace the existing remotes. really didn't want to, but I do like the functionality of the new one. much better than the old ones. however remember, they are NOT interchangable. the connectors are different..


02-05-2010, 01:53 PM
here's some shots of the new deck installed. it's awesome. if you can live without cd, this is the only way to go. nice handy place to store your ipod/usb drive out of the way(you can see the outlines of the trimring I had to make in the second pic. shows the difference in the old kenwoods and this one as far as footprint goes)...



couple shots of the display. can go from 4line to 2line and is completely customizable. very usb friendly when you have multiple files/tracks to sort thru. it can go between usb/ipod as random play, but it's a little slow when doing so, better to random on only one source at a time.

02-05-2010, 02:09 PM
ok... so now it's all done. my overall impressions:
cost came in at around $2500. this included the deck, 6 cabin speakers, 4 bullet hollowpoint towers, 1 jl 12w6 sub, 3 amps, and all the wiring and materials. bought most of the stuff off ebay all brand new except the bullets(from earmark- big thumbs up to them) and all the labor was my own. I was quoted almost $5.5k for this same system from a local shop, so I'm happy..
the deck is is a much needed improvement over the factory kenwood. it's so much easier to use and set, has much more adjustment and the usb interface is very user friendly. don't know about the ipod usage as I don't have one (yet). overall, it was well worth the upgrade even with the extra cost of the transom remote. granted you can get better decks from alpine, kenwood excelon and others, but this has 4volt outputs and the ability to bypass the internal amps for a cleaner signal. overall a great value..
the amps are solid, loud and don't get hot at all. even though they are not "marine" amps from wetsounds or the jl that everyone likes due to their class"d" operation, these will perform fine. good quality and a good value for the $$ when you shop around..

now on to the speakers...
the polks have to be one of the best bang-for-the-buck upgrades I did. great sound, 10x better than the kickers that came out. much clearer, more midrange and they handle the power great.
the bullets are phenomenal. they are a little "brighter" than the cabin speakers and are a little lacking in the midrange early on compared with a standard 6 1/2", but I think some of that has to do with the hlcd drivers. they are very loud. I was able to open the back man-door out the garage and walk to the back of the lot, approx. 60ft and they still sounded crystal clear at a moderate volume level. these will be oustanding on the lake. again, a little light in the midrange, and I wish I had the cans for the 770's, but overall, VERY HAPPY with the products and want to thank earmark for suggesting them, and you-da-man on here for turning me on to them...
the jl sub is the largest sub I have ever used in a "car audio" application. I have used many high end 10's and a couple of 12's before, but nothing to this capacity and all I can say is wholly s$$t. it's WAY too much sub for the boat, but that's not a bad thing. it hits loud and hard and doesn't seem to ever run out of steam. I see a few dash bolts getting lost this summer.. really could have done the 10w6 and been fine, but I'm happy with this.

overall, I think I'll have one of the best systems on my lake this summer. real happy with how it came together and all the components seem to work well with each other and the power is more than sufficient to bring on the onset of hearing loss :)

I know there are many other stereo upgrades going on this winter and I hope everyone is as happy with theirs as I am with mine...

02-06-2010, 12:38 AM
Thanks SandM. Looks great and i'm sure it sounds it too!!
I itching to get mine going too. I've almost got all the parts in and can start to wrench :)

02-07-2010, 02:56 AM
Nice write up! looks like it turned out really nice. I'm really looking closely at the Kenwood deck and remote so when you get an opportunity let me know how the remote works with an Ipod.

02-07-2010, 10:54 AM
I really like the tower control knob, i wish my 09 had that on it.....something simple and quick to adjust, i wonder if there is some way i can do this on mine?

02-07-2010, 08:31 PM
Docdrs check out a pac1 volume control simple fix. I'll try to find a link later.

02-08-2010, 08:52 AM
docdrs, if your boat is wired with the tower speakers on it's own amp, or on 2 channels of a 4ch amp, you can install one of the pac lc1's pretty easy. just install it inline of the rca cables.
if it's on a 4ch amp that only has a stereo set feeding it, you will need to rca-split the signal either at the amp or the source giving you 4ch input then install the pac inline of the tower channel..

02-08-2010, 01:38 PM
Nice install, I like that Kenwood setup you have.