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Thread: Help with JBL L-100 Cabinets

  1. #1
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2022

    Help with JBL L-100 Cabinets


    New member to the group here and would appreciate a little advice. After watching the price of vintage L100's go up and up, I finally pulled the plug and bought a pair. The speakers themselves are in great working condition but I'm thinking of giving a little love to the cosmetics.

    My questions. After a pretty deep dive there seems to be many differing opinions so I would appreciate thoughts from the experts.

    1. As pictured, the corners on one of the cabinets has some dings. Would you recommend repairing these spots by adding little pieces of new veneer or wood bondo (filler) based on the pictures. Also, if filler is recommended, how do folks feel about wood bondo.

    2. The scratches don't look too deep so I am thinking of sanding the existing veneer. I'm hearing that after sanding that I should just add linseed oil (assuming I can possibly still get it in California). Do you agree? Some people are recommending stains and/or various oils.

    In advance, excited to join the group of likeminded audio nerds.


  2. #2
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Northern California


    You can get boiled linseed (which isn't actually boiled) but you can forget Turpintine dryers for the linseed and paint grade alcohol to clean or use to cut shelac.

    Dents can sometimes be steamed out, personally I like to splice in species wood and tone to match followed by an oil finish. But that said there are people here who are artists with veneer, I'm not one of them. I think it's a matter of what you're good at. If you've never done either the splicing in wood seems to have a far less steep learing curve and is way less specail tool intensive You can get small pieces of walnut and other species woods, alder, oak at Home Depot.

  3. #3
    Senior Member markd51's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Sheboygan, Wisconsin
    Depends how particular you are?
    A full re-veneer and everything else to get the cabinets back is probably the best, but the most expensive option.

    And yeah, purists will cry their eyeballs out, but with a veneer job done correctly, it's then very tough to find fault.

    I do have to compliment JBL, their cabinet makers did some really nice work, so, one needs to equal or best that if considering retaining their best value.

    I'm sure there's a way to fill the dog bites, add miniscule pieces of veneer, sand-blend, etc, and this takes just about the same level of expertise as an Egyptian archeologist giving King Tut a shave and a haircut.

    Or, just slap a few coats of Howards Restore-A-Finish, or dark Old English Oil on the Cabs, a good dog bath, remove any goobers, paint, stains in as careful a way as possible, and go no further.

    Oh, and I've seen a lot worse L-100's, like the two pair my buddy bought, one pair was about $25, and the other about $45.

    Yeah, looked like you threw them all down a flight of stairs, but after he got the essentials fixed, they sang very nicely he claims.

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