DIY data rack

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Old 02-01-11, 07:42 PM
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DIY data rack

i have been installing voice and data for many years and always used 19 inch racks well i am building a workbench in my basement and wanted to build a custom rack unit. i am thinking of using wood products instead of steel so it blends in with the bench and such. i have the cat 5e patch panels routers and servers and wanted to build something unique. has any one tryed this, looking for some good ideas any pics and such.
 
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Old 02-01-11, 09:50 PM
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Build the frame out of 1x2's. Cover it and trim it with anything you want. The vertical front inside width of the frame should be 17.5 inches to give you a standard rack width of 19 inches.

Grounding is an issue. Steel racks are always grounded, and they provide a common ground for all of the metal parts and chassis of the gear. Steel racks also provide shielding from RF and other noise sources.
 
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Old 02-06-11, 07:24 AM
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Never tried the custom route, I have an old Chatsworth 19" relay rack in my basement that I got for free (wife's company was dumping it...great rack!). I like your idea and wish you luck.

Just adding a few considerations that you may have already thought of:
1) Access, access, access...be sure to leave accessible space for mounting equipment and wiring. Nothing is more annoying than cramped muscles and skinless knuckles from trying to access wiring ports!

2) Airflow: be sure to leave adequate ventilation space for your equipment. Not sure what routers you're using, but remember that a lot of Cisco gear vents through the sides, not front to back.

3) Emphasizing Rick Johnston's note on grounding/bonding. I got a tingle in my hand leaning across two racks in a lab I used to work in. Their rack row was not bonded together.

Sounds like a great project. Good luck!
 
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