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Sounds of a Beetle

BY JARMILA JACKSON Observer writer

Tuesday, August 14, 2012    

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AS far as sound systems go, St Catherine-based bakery operator Uriel Dunkley has the best of both worlds.

His 'hybrid sound system' known as the Dr Luscious Limo Bug is an impressive self-built combination of a traditional sound system and a car stereo sound system. The Bug was a hit at the Guinness Kings of Car Sound Clash held in St Andrew recently.

"I'm coming from the days of the big sound system, but I also know the convenience of having a more mobile sound. With this kind of hybrid you don't have to deal with spreading out or transporting a lot of boxes but you still get the joy of using the turntables," Dunkley told Auto.

Part 12-volt battery-operated system and part 120-volt system, what began as a regular 1990 VW Beetle has been carefully crafted into one of the most versatile mobile sounds on the local car stereo scene. Modified to fit a powerhouse of electro-valve speakers, Hifonics amplifiers and drivers, the combined cost of the work and equipment is estimated at just under $3 million.

"We essentially built the car from scratch. We took the VW Bug and stretched it; first, we cut it in half and then we added 2 1/2 feet to it. We also widened it by about six inches to accommodate the drivers that we have inside it. We are also the first to have designed a lift system whereby the top end boxes would be elevated through the roof of the car and are retractable into the car," said Dunkley.

According to Dunkley — who had been playing on regular sound systems since 1982 before moving on to a car stereo system in the early '90s — the process of building the one-of-a-kind sound system took about six months. The vehicle is road-ready, licensed and can be spotted all around the island at supermarkets, fun days and events doing promotions for Dunkley's Dr Luscious Bakery.

Dunkley revealed to Auto plans to have a new hybrid sound system finished in time to launch in December.

"The one we're working on right now is really going to be a massive system. We have actually cut a Bug, removed the chassis and replaced it with one from a VW van. We have stretched it by four feet and widened it by 10 inches. This system will be housing nine 18-inch speakers on the bass and we'll be playing 16 12-inch speakers on low/mid, 20 eight-inch speakers on high/mid along with 20 horns and boasting in excess of 30,000 watts in power," Dunkley said proudly.

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