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Audio systems and earthquake preparedness

Tokyo_John

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I looked before on this site for discussions about securing audio gear for earthquakes, but didn't find anything. There may not be many of you living in earthquake prone regions, but for those who do it might be useful to have a thread to share ideas with one another. Ideally we want to keep ourselves and our precious gear safe, while not sacrificing sound quality...a worthy pair of goals.

I'll start with a trick I figured out recently. I have an audio setup that I really like now, including a pair of LS50 Metas placed at the ends of a 6' wide entertainment center, perched on a set of isoacoustics stands to lift the tweeters up to ear level. However, a couple months ago we had a decent shake and I noticed the speakers dancing and swaying a bit on the stands...since my wife just happened to be standing next to them, I said "hold the speaker to keep it falling" and she corralled one while I grabbed the other. This wasn't a big earthquake by Tokyo standards, and I knew we could expect worse...it was time to do something to save these speakers from a big fall the next time. I wasn't keen on screwing the speakers down to a board, so I thought a while and came up with a relatively simple fix that cost me only 10 bucks, and is very easy to implement. Each speaker got a couple of straps, one to secure the stand to the entertainment center, and another to secure the speaker to the stand....
IMG_2224.jpg

The straps are crossed so that the speaker strap goes under the lowest rungs of the stand while the base strap goes over the top rungs of the stand...
IMG_2225.jpg


I didn't tighten the straps fully, there is a little slack in them but this is ok. In an earthquake the speaker/stand will lift from the top/base and this will naturally tighten the tension on the strap, and the amount of leaning will be limited. Even in the worst case, they should not be able to fall off the entertainment center onto the hard floor.

...I hope this is useful for somebody. I hope others can post any tricks they've used, or strategies to achieve the dual goals of safety and high fidelity.
 

JSmith

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Each speaker got a couple of straps, one to secure the stand to the entertainment center, and another to secure the speaker to the stand....
Nice. :)
My earthquake preparedness is mainly not living where earthquakes are likely.
OP is from Japan... bit hard to avoid earthquakes there. ;)


JSmith
 

GD Fan

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Surely you've heard the urban legend that your speakers should be placed in a doorway in case of earthquakes?....
 

mkc

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Good solution, I wonder how to approach with towers.
My towers fell once during an earthquake some time ago and it chip off some of the exterior.
 

wwenze

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Shouldn't the table / entertainment center strap hold onto the bottom half of the stand while the speaker strap hold onto the top half?

The stand is designed to have isolation between top and bottom half and now you're pressing them together...
 

Waxx

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Good solution, I wonder how to approach with towers.
My towers fell once during an earthquake some time ago and it chip off some of the exterior.
I know in yachts they screw them to the floor to keep standing even in heavy weather whre the ship is rolling and pitching arround.
 
OP
Tokyo_John

Tokyo_John

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Shouldn't the table / entertainment center strap hold onto the bottom half of the stand while the speaker strap hold onto the top half?

The stand is designed to have isolation between top and bottom half and now you're pressing them together...
Not pressed together, there is a slight bit of slack, there is no effect on the isolation. The top and bottom of the stands can separate so the under-top/over-bottom arrangement mitigates this possibility in a strong quake. Also, the slack prevents vibrations/resonances in the straps...one of the reasons I didn't want to bolt them down.
 

maverickronin

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I don't live in an earthquake zone, but I have my KEF R3's secured in a similar way to a pair of K&M 26774 monitor stands. The R3's are under the stand's weight limit, but too tall for peace of mind.
 

Neddy

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Excellent points - commonly 'forgotten' I'm guessing - that and large flat panels on furniture too.
Thanks for the reminder.
My solution - tho the Big One is a ways away time wise here - huge mostly square heavy monsters 130#s sitting on the floor directly (also audo rack).
They may dance about the room, or even leave, but sure aren't gonna fall on anyone.
My TVs are all bolted to the walls.
:eek:
 
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fieldcar

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I wonder if you could just use a good amount of Blu Tack below each isolation pad to anchor it to the surface. I've merged two subwoofers together and they were very tough to separate without a good amount of effort and dental floss.
 
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