Wilco High-Power Leslie 122 Build
As a company, we have had the privilege of working with Wilco over the last eight years. We sold their keyboardist, Mikael Jorgensen, his touring A100 & 122 rig. After touring with this setup for over a year, Mikael requested that we build him a Leslie that had the kind of clean headroom he wanted for live applications. After much discussion, I proposed a unique design and we got to work. We upgraded the 15” woofer to a JBL E140 speaker and the high frequency driver to a JBL 2482. The 15” speaker fit easily, but the 2482 required a specially machined adapter. Once that was fitted, it allowed us to couple the huge driver to the rotating horn assembly. To connect this Leslie to an external amplifier, we installed a Speakon NL4 connector in the back that was then connected to a Crown amplifier.
The crossover points were set in the amplifier and the Leslie was run in bi-amped mode. For changing the speed of the Leslie, we built a heavy duty circuit with field-replaceable relays and military grade connectors. Our final step was to do some structural reinforcing of the cabinet. This included heavy duty bracing, caulking all wood joints, and making sure that the extreme SPL didn’t cause any buzzing or rattling. After touring with his new Super Leslie for a few months, Michael had us build a second one to use in Europe. The band stores a second set of gear in Europe to make touring easier, so model No.#2 is a full-time European resident.