1×10″ Guitar Cabinet

After a few years of owning the home-made 1×12″ cab based around the Celestion Greenback I felt like it was a good time for a change. The cab was huge and super heavy because it was made from MDF board. Also, the closed back design made it sound a bit boomy. So I decided to scale down, build a smaller open back cabinet using lighter wood, do a proper tolex job that will be durable and good looking.


As cab dimensions are less important with open back designs, I went with a smaller size for better portability. It’s 36x36x18cm (or 14x14x7in) big, or small.
My father made the solid pine cabinet. It turned out nice and light and very good looking, even without the tolex. The front baffle is glued to the rest of the cab to make the box more sturdy and one of the pieces at the back is removable for accessibility.


I’ve wanted a Vintage 30 for a while, but I also like the idea of smaller size and portability. So the news of the G10 Vintage coming out was indeed a very good one for me 🙂 It’s supposed to be a 10″ version of the Vintage 30 capable of handling 60 watts of power, which is nice. Also, I never really get to push my speakers hard in the apartment, so having a slightly smaller speaker may be a good thing, as it needs less power to get moving. Bigger is usually better, but it also implies more power and more volume, which I do not want. I opted for the 8ohm version, as most of my amps were built with 8ohm output. These Celestions are made in China but the build quality seems good and the price is reasonable, so I think they are good value.


I got some nice looking Black Taurus (Mesa style) tolex from Brett’s Sound Shop. They cut tolex in 18, 36 and 54 inch widths which leaves less scraps and prices are very fair, so thumbs up for them 🙂 . Instead of the standard grill cloth I went with the round metal grill which means that the front baffle had to be tolexed as well It was a bit tricky to tolex the speaker hole because it’s round. I glued a square piece of tolex on the baffle and cut the piece that was left above the hole the same way you cut the pizza (see below). That made triangular pieces of tolex that could be wrapped around the edges of the hole. But that also leaves triangular holes uncovered, so I had to use more triangular pieces of tolex to cover them. At the end it turned out awesome. If done carefully, seams are unnoticeable.

It took almost a full 250ml can of glue to tolex the whole cab. Be careful with the glue, although I made the draft to vent the room, the smell of the glue gave me a headache!

Finishing Details

I put some nice black metal corners to make it more sturdy but also not to have to worry about tolexing the corners. I did that on few of my other amps and it’s a major PITA to do tolex joins around the corner that look nice and clean.

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9 Responses to “1×10″ Guitar Cabinet”
  1. Gabriel Sposito says:

    Could I please get some info regarding the jack plate? I am also trying to build a 1×10 and I wonder if I need some electronics for it?

  2. Argee G says:

    After years of playing through different amps I’ve found that I like open back cabs the best. However, the ‘pinched’ sound of a small open back cab like a Princeton Reverb or one of those small Mesa Boogie 1-12″ combo amps does not sound good to me. I think an open back cab is sort of like an open baffle for hi-fi. You want a lot of baffle area so the back wave doesn’t cancel the front radiation too much. I’d like to try an open back cab with a couple of 8-inch speakers, but with a nice large baffle. Like Twin Reverb sized, but with two 8’s and not so heavy.

  3. Carmine says:

    Awesome build!
    If you wanted to do a close back, would you build it with the same volume, or increase it?

    • bancika says:

      Depends on the driver really. I built even smaller one with 1×6″ driver that is closed back, but I used driver parameters to compute the volume and shape of the box to get the most out of the driver.

  4. carlos says:


  5. Malepew says:


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    The idea behind this site is to share my experience with Do It Yourself approach to guitars, amplifiers and pedals. Whether you want to save a couple of bucks by performing a mod or upgrade yourself instead of paying a tech, or want to build your own piece of gear from scratch, I'm sure you will find something interesting here. Also, this is the home of DIY Layout Creator, a free piece of software for drawing circuit layouts and schematics, written with DIY enthusiasts in mind.