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*Update 5/7*Project log - Disassembling the Grado RS1 & Modding and Thunderpants Mod(with pics)

Discussion in 'Headphones (full-size)' started by mlantinen, Mar 31, 2011.
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  1. mlantinen
    Edits as of 4/5 are in red.
    Hey guys,
    Scored what I believe to be a Vintage A or B (Confirmed to be Vintage B by Mercuttio) RS1 that is in need of a recable and also a few cosmetic mods that I have in mind.  Sadly mine did not come with the original pizza box packaging.  The ebay listing description was sketchy at best) I have been searching for something for a few months that are equivalent to the SR200's with pinks (Learned these are not pinks but the rarer HP1000 Blackstar drivers) that I borrowed.  Good news!  These are easily equivalent if not better.  Sound quality is amazing paired up with my Leben.  But that's another story I can share later.  I need help taking these babies apart.
    I know...I know....it's considered sacrilege by many to change anything cosmetically.  It definitely needs a re-cable though as can be seen in the pics below and looking behind the driver I can see that one of the wires is hanging on by a thread.  
    I've got a good start chipping the glue out from the driver with a small tool included in an Exacto type tool kit that I had.  
    ***My question:  Has anyone or does anyone know if you can unscrew the four tops holding the cups in the circles (for lack of a better way to decribe the parts)?  (You can twist these bolts out using some protective tape, WD-40, and pliers)
    I know there's quite a few Grado and more specifically, RS1 experts out there like schwallman, Mercuttio, Nikongod and Bilavideo, to name a couple that might be able to help.
    Here's a few pics of what I've got.  You'll also notice that I took the screen off one of the drivers as it was about a 1/4 of the way off anyway.  Doesn't seem to affect sound quality as far as my untrained ears can detect.  I also wanted to verify they had the pink drivers (These do have the pink drivers, but not because the actual driver is pink, but becuase the cheesecloth screens turn pink over time.  See rest of post) that I so cherish...and they do!  Sha--wing!
    DSC_5924.jpg DSC_5938.jpg DSC_5922.jpg DSC_5950.jpg DSC_5920.jpg DSC_5947.jpg DSC_5953.jpg DSC_5954.jpg DSC_5927.jpg DSC_5951.jpg
  2. schwallman
    I just took a pair apart a few weeks back. They were not as hard to get into as previously thought. Just remember that it won't look good in the process but it can all be fixed once taken apart.
  3. schwallman
    I didn't see anything that resembles screws. All I did was take a razor and jammed it into the space between the plastic driver and wood shell. Again it will not look pretty but one the driver is out you can sand and restain them.
  4. schwallman
    Those black screws do unscrew. You only need to do one on each side. I'm on vacation so I don't have many pics available. Here's what I did to an hf2. Same concept with taking the drivers out of the cups.
  5. schwallman
    Having trouble posting pics on my iPad. Hold please.
  6. mlantinen
    Thanks schwallman.  Did you use a pliers to unscrew the tops?  Did you use any wd-40 or anything?
  7. mlantinen
    Ok.  With alittle wd-40 I was able to get one of the bolts out that was holding the cup in.  It was really tight so I ended up chipping the paint.  I put two layers of electrical tape over the head of the bolt and used small pliers.  
    Hopefully the paint issue isn't too big of a deal since I was thinking of stripping all the black from the metal.  Although it looks like they may have been powder coated.  I don't know.  I should at least be able to get new bolts from Grado, I would think.
    Still working on removing the driver from the wood housing.  I'll post back with pics once I do.
  8. schwallman
    Mine scratched unscrewing them the first time. Just take a straight razor to that bubbled up glue. Once you get that off you can start going around the driver breaking up the glue. It should be somewhat easier since the glue is older. Again the wood will not look pretty but it will be fine once you get it all back together.
    I'm sorry I'm having trouble posting pics im on vacation and the wireless is not working at all. 3G is pretty bad also.

    Just take your time and be patient.
  9. Mercuttio
    Yikes, man... I'd really let a pro handle that recable. It's so easy to damage older Grados, and that pair looks absolutely phenomenal. I know that if you're gonna take apart a pair you'll really need to master a hair-dryer though. Heat is incredibly important in getting past the glue.
    (Oh, and I'd say you have a Vintage B there, given the full circle of text, which is the same that the Classic used. You'd also need a wood box to qualify for Vintage A, or proof it came in one.)
  10. schwallman
    A blow drier does nothing to that glue. Maybe the older glue is different but my RS1s glue didnt budge with heat.

  11. mlantinen
    Thanks guys. I've re cabled several headphones including grados so it shouldn't be too bad. I really enjoy this kind of stuff so I wouldn't want to senday them out to someone to do the work.
  12. LugBug1
    Keep us updated, I'd love to watch this from start to finish and see the end result. Are you going to upgrade the cable (silver for e.g?) or keep it authentic?
  13. schwallman
    my god I'm having a hard time posting on 3g.
    I did the billavideo hole punch to the rs1 drivers as well. The hf2s already had one in the corner so i went with two holes a driver. They sound ridiculous. Don't be afraid to do whatever to your headphones. That's all they are. They are not collectors items and your grand kids wont be taking them to the pawn star guys in the future. I have the "i"cable on them until i get my hf2 drivers cups in. I plan to re cable them with a nice silver braid when the money is available. If you have the balls to punch holes in them go for it. Mine now have the thump i was looking for.
    when i get back from vacation, i can post some pics of my mods. In the last couple of pages of the 60 mods you can see the re stained rs1s. They are not as shiny as they look in the pics in person.
  14. mlantinen
    Hey schwally and Lugbug.  It's astounding what we can do with phones and ipads, but even with all the technology there's always some probem, heh.  
    Schwally- what do you mean by poking holes in the drivers?  I guess I can look up bilavideos posts but thought I'd ask for clarification.  
    I really don't need more bass.  I think they sound amazing the way they are.  I love modding things but I don't really feel like these need improvement in the SQ area.  They're an absolute dream.
    Yeah, I plan on re-cabling them with some Cooner silver plated copper that I've got braided up and ready to go.  It was an nightmare braiding.  It turned out more of a flat braid and I couldn't for the life of me figure out the round braid.  But, I'm going to terminate with a tricked out Pailiccs 1/4" plug.  I also might go for the stock cable from a set of HE-5's and re-terminate with the Pailiccs. Gonna need to re-cable the Thunderpants too so, might use one of these for that project.  Whooo knows.  I'm going to try to work on them this weekend.  
    Thanks for the post Mercuttio.  
  15. Mercuttio
    Hey man, my hat's off to you. I wouldn't be confident enough to go in there and do what you're doing, but it seems like you've got it under control. 
    Honestly, I'd just be incredibly interested to hear them with the new cables on at the end. I've heard pretty much every version of the RS1 (including a one-off that occured when John put a pair of early Classic RS1 drivers into an HP1000) but I've never heard a re-cabled vintage. I bet something amazing's going to come out the other side here when the dust settles. 

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