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19" Rack enclosures... can't find thread...

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19" Rack enclosures... can't find thread...

Postby Mixedup » Thu Nov 10, 2011 2:31 pm

Hi All,

Any recommendations for suppliers of rack enclosures in the UK/EU? I don't want plastic, and I don't particularly want to pay a great deal, but I do want it to feel solid. Yes, I know, you get what you pay for... but seriously, any links/recommendations would be welcome.

There was a thread on this site ages ago (maybe 2 years??) that recommended a company in Italy, that made kits for rather nice looking enclosures for £30-40, which would be perfect... but I'll be damned if I can find the thread or remember the name of the company!

Cheers,

M.
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Re: 19" Rack enclosures... can't find thread...

Postby . . . Delete This User . . . » Thu Nov 10, 2011 3:02 pm

www.studioracks.co.uk


good stuff, well made, in the uk.....
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Re: 19" Rack enclosures... can't find thread...

Postby . . . Delete This User . . . » Thu Nov 10, 2011 3:03 pm

oops, just clicked, you probably mean the equipment casing rather than a rack itself...
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Re: 19" Rack enclosures... can't find thread...

Postby Martin Walker » Thu Nov 10, 2011 5:53 pm

I haven’t come across any cheap aluminium rack enclosures myself, and certainly not in the £30-£40 range, so I’m interested to see what others suggest.

However, if you’ve already got a rack to fit it into, one fairly cheap approach that nevertheless would work well from an electronic point of view is to build your circuit into a diecast aluminium box, and then bolt that to a blank rack front panel - no-one would know once it was bolted into the rack, since you’d simply see the beautiful front panel :beamup:

This is the approach taken by a host of DIY modular synth builders 8-)


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Re: 19" Rack enclosures... can't find thread...

Postby Mixedup » Thu Nov 10, 2011 6:02 pm

Off duty BBQ lighter AKA Idris wrote:oops, just clicked, you probably mean the equipment casing rather than a rack itself...

Thanks ODBBQLAKAI... I did indeed mean the actual cases. I've already got a decent old Ominrax desk/racking system. Just want to make more stuff to put in it ;)
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Re: 19" Rack enclosures... can't find thread...

Postby Mixedup » Thu Nov 10, 2011 6:08 pm

Thanks Martin,

Yes, I'd thought about that approach. Not keen though. *I'd* know, you see? ;)

Oh well, sheet aluminium (yes Mr Forum Splellchcecker, that's right... it's A-L-U-M-I-N-I-U-M!!!) is cheap enough. Maybe I'll just brush up on my metalworking skills while I'm at it. It's a pretty trivial job, so I s'pose if I'm going the DIY route, I might as well go the whole hog! A pretty front panel might be more involved though!
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Re: 19" Rack enclosures... can't find thread...

Postby dmills » Thu Nov 10, 2011 9:30 pm

I like the stuff from Holt Broadcast for this, particularly the allex and allex EMC ranges, slightly more money, especially if you want the 3U one, but the EMC range are lovely.

The Italian company may be www.hifi2000.it who do various rack cases with or without heatsinks built in, but I do not really rate the quality.

For small things, I second the notion of a diecast box screwed to the back of a panel.

Regards, Dan.
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Re: 19" Rack enclosures... can't find thread...

Postby Mixedup » Thu Nov 10, 2011 10:16 pm

Yes, it was the modushop.biz web site I'd had in mind. Prices have risen a bit since I last saw, but not so much as elsewhere.

I'd seen the 1U racks there. What's the issue with them... I mean, as long as they're rigid and the front panels are nicely machined and the bends are genuine right angles... how can you get something like this *wrong*?(!)
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Re: 19" Rack enclosures... can't find thread...

Postby dmills » Thu Nov 10, 2011 10:49 pm

Self tapping screws instead of proper press in sheet metal nuts, non conductive powder coating on mating surfaces (EMC problem and makes ensuring everything is earthed a pain), sharp edges where the press has cut things, and at least in my case I had a few holes that did not line up well.

The steel is also a bit on the thin side, fine once assembled, but a bit flexible when you strip the case down.

Cheap? Sure, but IMHO it shows a bit in the fit and finish.

Good enough for a prototype while you are still deciding on the layout and will end up with all sorts of 'spare' holes (And I have used them for this), but IMHO not for a quality production unit.

Regards, Dan.
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Re: 19" Rack enclosures... can't find thread...

Postby SiriusBlack » Thu Nov 10, 2011 10:51 pm

I used this guy's suggestion and made a couple http://www.ikeahackers.net/2007/09/hack-bedside-tables-into-music-studio.html

I think it was £7.99 for ikea bedside table and about £10 for rack rails and screws :-)
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Re: 19" Rack enclosures... can't find thread...

Postby Mixedup » Thu Nov 10, 2011 11:16 pm

SiriusBlack wrote:I used this guy's suggestion and made a couple http://www.ikeahackers.net/2007/09/hack-bedside-tables-into-music-studio.html

I think it was £7.99 for ikea bedside table and about £10 for rack rails and screws :-)

LOL... thanks for the tip, but it's the metal cases that the electronics sits inside that I want... ie the things that you put in those racks that you've made. I've got plenty of racking, I just need more stuff to put inside them :headbang:

Useful tip for others though...
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Re: 19" Rack enclosures... can't find thread...

Postby nathanscribe » Thu Nov 10, 2011 11:19 pm

Farnell sell 'em in different U and depths. The smaller ones aren't far above your budget I think.
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Re: 19" Rack enclosures... can't find thread...

Postby grab » Fri Nov 11, 2011 11:06 am

Penn-Elcom (aka Penn Fabrication) are another. Mostly they sell to middlemen though.
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Re: 19" Rack enclosures... can't find thread...

Postby Frank Eleveld » Fri Nov 11, 2011 11:07 am

A few years ago a small Austrialian company (can't seem to find the link anymore) had very high quality enclosures available. Fully modular, well-made and properly shielded against EMC... But their products were frightingly expensive - a complete 19" kit was about 200 AUD plus shipping.

I seriously considered getting one of these enclosures for the Green MicPre I was building at the time, but ultimately decided the price was too high.

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Re: 19" Rack enclosures... can't find thread...

Postby benniferj » Fri Nov 11, 2011 2:08 pm

Bryant Broadcast are fantastic for this sort of thing, including wallboxes, stageboxes, connectors, components etc.

This is what I think you're after. Lots of different sizes and colours.

http://www.bryant-unlimited.co.uk/iqs/cpti.651/dbitemid.361/sfa.view/racks_and_accessories.html
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Re: 19" Rack enclosures... can't find thread...

Postby Folderol » Fri Nov 11, 2011 6:54 pm

Mmm. They look very smart - tempted to buy one even though I don't need one at the moment :headbang:
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Re: 19" Rack enclosures... can't find thread...

Postby forumuser695516 » Fri Nov 11, 2011 11:17 pm

Yes, I posted the modushop one in a thread quite a while back. I used one of their cases for my Hypex amp build.
Perhaps not the cheapest, but the quality is very good. So its a decent enough deal for what you get.
Maplins do really cheap ones.. But they look pretty naff. And someone on here said they were not all that either..
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Re: 19" Rack enclosures... can't find thread...

Postby Paradigm X » Mon Nov 14, 2011 4:34 pm

http://www.esr.co.uk/electronics/products/frame_rack.htm

Are cheap... meant to be good, not used/seen personally tho tbh.
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Re: 19" Rack enclosures... can't find thread...

Postby nathanscribe » Mon Nov 14, 2011 5:08 pm

ESR are a decent, friendly place - but those racks look like the same ones Maplin have, and those are not great. Their one advantage is they're cheap, but I wouldn't recommend them and I won't be buying another. Awkward to work, and the fixings are a bit naff.

I've had other things from ESR though, and have always enjoyed good service, so don't let my above comment put anyone off ordering from them.
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Re: 19" Rack enclosures... can't find thread...

Postby Mixedup » Wed Nov 30, 2011 12:07 pm

Slightly off-topic from my initial post, but I stumbled across this site, offering enclosures with front panels for many of the available DIY designs:

DIY Racked

Thought it worth adding to this thread....
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Re: 19" Rack enclosures... can't find thread...

Postby Martin Walker » Wed Nov 30, 2011 1:39 pm

Excellent find Mixedup!

Thanks for the link 8-)


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Re: 19" Rack enclosures... can't find thread...

Postby sdracer77 » Sun Dec 18, 2011 8:32 pm

i've been using this company for my network cabinets and panels for school
they cover a range of audio panels and cases that might help you. found them on ebay they also have their own website Allmetalparts http://www.allmetalparts.co.uk
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Re: 19" Rack enclosures... can't find thread...

Postby Martin Walker » Mon Dec 19, 2011 3:41 pm

Hi Steve, and welcome to the SOS Forums! 8-)

Thanks also for that excellent link/resource - I might well end up buying some blank aluminium front panels from them at those bargain prices (so may companies only supply them in steel, which is much harder to drill for DIY projects).

The other rack sizes and accessories also seem good value :D


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