Musician, Singer, Craftsman

A working band is so much more than just music. It takes hours of planning, scheduling, branding, self promotion, coordination with talent buyers and bar managers, performance production and gear... so much gear. One Way Ride has its own PA system (speakers, stands, microphones, cables and a mixing board) and we make it available for gigs at smaller venues, weddings or private parties. On top of that every band member has their own musical instruments and associated stands, cables, amplifiers, et cetera. That equates to a lot of gear that is heavily used and transported around town regularly. One more reason to use and maintain quality equipment. 

Tired of the same, old, one-size-fits-all gear available on the market we often times find ourselves constructing custom equipment such as protective cases or instrument stands. Last winter we built a custom fitted, foam lined, wooden carrying case for our mixing board, and before that we converted an old footlocker to haul cables in one side and fragile gear like microphones and harmonicas in a padded cubby on the other side. 

This weekend I was back at it again. With a good friend, a Lincoln welder, a borrowed conduit bender and a case of beer I built a custom microphone stand any lead singer would be proud to own. 

I started by chopping up an old adjustable microphone stand and base purchased from some dingy pawn shop on Colfax. The base is a cast iron bowl forged in China uses proprietary threading and pipe size (meaning you cannot just purchase a new piece of standard pipe that fits the base and be done with it).

Next I purchased a ten foot long stick of 3/4” EMT conduit and used a pipe bender to create a smooth one hundred twenty degree bend at the top of the pipe to shape the “gooseneck” typical of adjustable, store bought microphone stands. Then, with the help of my friend Nick, we measured and cut the pipe to length, welded it to the old stand, and added a threaded piece to hold the plastic microphone clip at the top. 

After an hour of grinding and sanding and we were ready to paint it. We used two coats of RustOLeum primer, three coats of metallic gold spray paint, and a finish coat of spray on lacquer to protect the finish. 

The final product is my very own, custom fitted, performance quality microphone stand. 

-Lyle Work