re-finish of dunlavy speakers?

I own a pair of Dunlavy SCII speakers in the black oak finish. In order to improve WAF, I am thinking about applying a light maple veneer that would wrap around from bottom, up sides and across top, leaving the front black. Assuming I did a high quality job, including sanding and finishing the veneer once applied, would the mere fact that they are no longer "original" send the value of the speakers through the floor, or might there be other Dunlavy owners out there who would like a maple monolith? Similarly, as my wife and I are expecting a baby, I have been thinking about replacing the clothe grille with one of my own design: a metal frame about 20" long, covered with a metal screen that would be rigid enough to resist little fingers but still perforated sufficiently not to interfere with sound. This grille would fit over the midsection of the speaker front, extending above and below the drivers, and screwing into the sides of the speakers. Assuming the screws are short enough not to go all the way through the speaker cabinet, would attaching such a grille necessarily reduce value? Personally, I think the Dunlavys look pretty drab as is, and the addition of contrasting veneer on the sides and a high-tech metal grille on the front would dress them up considerably. My only concern is if and when I want to sell them, they are still worth something. Thoughts, o' sages of the 'Gon?
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In my case the cloth grille was enough to remove the attention of my boys mainly concentrated on the moving woofer. Once it's on there's no interest of pumping the woofer with hands.
As to refinishing speaker for your wife try to tell her that it will nearly cost as getting a new speaker and... there you'll have an option to upgrade...:-)
re-finish those ugly black finished speakers I considered this once myself can't believe they actually produced that ugly finish and people bought them this way new,my pair was used and cheap or wouldn't have purchased them. Still I didn't ever like looking at them. Changing the grille would definitely effect resale value.
Remember beauty is in the eye of the beholder, but everyone knows butt-ugly! I would think that the mods would reduce re-sale.
A serious answer would require a picture to assess contours and some info from Dunlavy or other owners as to the original finish product used.
Certainly it can be done.
I would be glad to help. E-mail me.
But consider that a competent cabinet maker could probably do justice to the speakers and make a profit at $3- $500 plus the cost of veneer.Or spray tem with 5 coats of very high quality paint and a clear coat for just the $300 or a little more.
Grills are another story:
I like the idea of doing a "faux(?)" paint finish on the speakers!
My budy does artwork on KTLA Channel 5 a few mornings a month as a spot-light segment(also did Oprah's once!)I've seen him do superb faux work on just about every finish imaginable.
I was talking to him some time back about doing faux paint jobs on speakers, and marketing them! You could, say, on the Dunlavy's, make em look like a giant piece of marble or rock, or fake wood! Why not?!!!
I've seen him take plastered pillars and make them look so much like real marble for instance, that you wouldn't know the difference until you got your face right next to it!!!...why not do something similar on your large speakers!?
Anyway, I think it would be cool as an option, whether you did it yourself(obviously better by a pro), or had someone else do it. I wonder if anyone else has had this done, or considered it???. The options are endless with what you could do with paint, and you wouldn't change the acoustics, or do anything to radical to the structure that couldn't be stripped or even "repainted" if you changed your mind or lifestyle. It's a thought anyway.
As for Dunlavy's "re-sell value", that company is out of business anyway, I doubt the resale will stay. Also, you can't get proper matched drivers anymore for "driver matching", which was a serious design point of those speakers(driver matching that is). If you blow drivers, on those, you're getting a different speaker drivers, that's all there is to itAt any rate, good luck
as far as the value ging through the floor they already went once the shop closed it's doors. From my point of view the out-of-production status should have sent prices straight up since they are still some of the best sounding speakers ever. Make em pretty and enjoy them.
The Dunlavy's are descent speakers. Sold em for years(sound in the ear of the beholder. They had speed, dynamics, coherency, and pace going for them,that's certain.
But as a speaker line, let's face it, they weren't anything super highly coveted by the masses, that's for sure. I sold em in a high end store, and they weren't "flying out of the store" anyway. I actually went to the factory and talked to john once. That was fun.
Anyway, I see speakers like cars...the second you drive em off the lot, the value drops like a rock!!! You couple that with the fact that you can't get proper parts for them anymore, and you have challenges if you blow something.
I've blown many drivers on Dun's over the years, so be careful, have enough power on tap, run em as "small" for HT!(yess!!!!!!!!), and don't do something stupid with them, like unplug your amp connections with the equipment on!!!!
If they are truly an oak veneer, you should be able to refinish them by stripping the black (laquer?) and applying a stain then your choice of poly or laquer. I did this to my Alon V's and used a blended stain (provencial,walnut,and mahogony) then sanding sealer, then 9 light coats of clear laquer (sanding between coats).

The only costs are the stripper (zip strip), the coatings, and sandpaper/steel wool. You can always do new grill cloth (but I do not like Parts Express cloth). I got mine from a local speaker maker so that would not be an option for you. I would look around and have the vendors send small samples until you find what you are looking for. Good luck. - Tim
Thank you all for your well considered ideas. I now have much more food for thought, including two ideas I hadn't thought about, stripping the black and refinishing the original oak, as well as painting them. The issue I see with painting them is that I would have to pull out the drivers...not much of a problem with most speakers, though I do prefer not to break the original seal...but with the Dunlavys the tweeter is surrounded by strips of felt that would have to be removed as well. Any thoughts from anyone with experience actually removing Dunlavy drivers about what I may be facing? And THANK YOU once again to all of those kind enough to share your good advice.