After experiencing the devastating failure with ACS, I decided to manufacture my own custom sleeves. I've done some casting works while I was working at a dental lab for part-time, so I am not that unfamiliar with molding. I'll need following materials:
1. A dremel tool with a variable speed control pedal & precision bits
2. silicone putty
3. RTV silicone
4. A pair of oto-blocks & bite blocks
5. An ear syringe & an exacto knife
I already have 2~5, so far so good. (hopefully the RTV silicone is not too toxic to my skin LMAO) Considering how complicated it is to make custom (partial & full) dentures, I assume manufacturing custom sleeves should be easy as breeze. (no offense intended)
Still pondering how to terminate the acoustic transfer tube at the bore, tho..
Update on 03/22/11: Got a hand on agar. Now all I need is a dremel tool.
Update on 03/24/11: Just ordered a dremel. Maybe I'll go to Home Depot to get some bits. Also, I might need these as well:
7. a metal jar for wax dipping
8. a scale
9. sevaral measuring flasks or clear plastic pitchers
10. clear casting form plates.. or some disposable plastic cups
11. a small stove to melt the wax
..I am getting excited.
Update on 03/31/11: I have obtained #2~#5 & #7~#11. The dremel tool I ordered was not the one I expected, so I returned it- and ordered a new one. #6 was backordered, so the retailer will ship it to me once it's restocked. Sweet. Also, below are supplemental materials:
12. 2-part epoxy
13. a copper wire
14. a stirring stick
15. polishing bits
I got #12, #14, and #15. Now all I need are the dremel, agar, and a stirring stick.
Update on 4/11/11: Successfully created full-concha impressions by myself:
Update on 4/14/11: Agar casting is not going well- the retention area located between the 1st and the 2nd bend is an undercut- when the impression is pulled out from the agar, the undercut part comes off along with the impression. Raising pH level & increasing concentration of agar did not help either. I can just fill some wax there to ease undercut, but I do not want to lose that nicely curved angle. Will try alginate or a just simple latex rubber. (could try something simple like a plaster, but I want absolutely no dust along the process, period)
Update on 4/20/11: Newly obtained vacuum pump works great for debubbling silicone & epoxy resin. Latex rubber takes too much time to harden when it is poured in a blob. Hopefully I can make a prototype sleeve within a week.
Update on 4/22/11: The very first prototype- And it's all bubbly.
Update on 4/24/11: Just ordered some materials. It seems I really need things other than the ones listed above. Casting will resume once they arrive.
Update on 5/26/11: With my new miter saw, just made a form plate that suits my needs perfectly. However, my el-cheapo vacuum pump is not doing the job- Still too bubbly!!
Quick measurement links
Headphone measurement data by brands:
AKG • Apple • Astrotec • Audeze • Aurisonics • Beyerdynamic • BOSE • Brainwavz • Brookstone • Creative
Earsonics • Etymotic Research • Fostex • Final Audio Design • Grado • Heir Audio • Hidition • HiFiMAN • JAYS • JVC
LEAR • LG • Martin Logan • MEElectronics • Maxell • Monoprice • NuForce • NVX • Ocharaku • Phonak • Radius
RHA • Rockit Sounds • Samsung • Sennheiser • Shure • SONY • STAX • Suyama • TDK • T-PEOS • Ultimate Ears
Wall of Shame (coming soon)