DIY A/V rack? - Page 8 - AVS Forum
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Old 12-26-2012, 07:41 AM
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The draft of the design has all the air is being pushed under then and then behind the components. I do not see much cooling happening. As stated you have to get cooling through the components. Even just putting holes in the shelves will only allow natural convection to occur through the components. Air will take the path of least resistance and this draft plan allows the cool air to bypass all the equipment.

The design I am working on will pressurize the volume between the front door and the components with fresh cool air. Air will be drawn from this front plenum underneath each component. Each component will be sealed from the back, creating a rear plenum that will be under negative pressure (or fans attached to the heat producing equipment). This way cool fresh air is drawn from the front plenum, up and through the equipment, to the rear plenum where it gets exhausted. The air is used once and expelled. This is a push pull design (as stated above) but controls the flow for maximum cooling.

I may use blank 2U panels with 60mm fans mounted in it, underneath the hottest equipment, to help push and control where the air goes from the front plenum.
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Old 12-26-2012, 09:19 AM
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All, I am finishing the framing in my dedicated theater. I plan on mounting my equipment in a flushmount rack that I would like to make myself. The walls have 2x4 studs 16 O.C.. As far as equipment I plan on an Integra AVR, probably an Emotiva amp, Xbox 360/720, PS3/4, 2 Directv boxes, Power conditioner of some type, AppleTv2. If i want to do this all for < $500 what would be the best route? I will have access behind the rack.
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Old 12-26-2012, 09:28 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by krakhen View Post

Thanks for the interest. I will update in the future and publish the plans on sketchup for you guys.
The concept as it is presented right now would have the lower fan pushing air into the rack space and the upper fan pulling air from the rack space to the outside, but proper airflow is a completely valid concern since I'm not convinced this will be enough. The only space available would be a little to the sides and the space left on the back. I'm not planning to close the front, do you think it would be more efficient to use fans on the back(remember there isn't so much room behind the rack).
Since I know heat is an enemy to electronics, here is the current list of equipment going into the rack:
Onkyo 818 Receiver
Emotiva UPA-500 Amp
Behringer NU3000DSP Amp
Monster HTS-3600 MKII Power Center
Sony PS3 Super Slim
Motorola Cable Box
Zotac HTPC or Raspberry Pi (haven't decided which one to use yet)
Global Cache WF2IR iTach Wi-Fi to IR


The fans in the back would be nice since the front is open. You could also place fans on one side and place vent(s) or holes on the other side to create more air movement.
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Old 12-27-2012, 08:11 AM
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Me three? Looks great!
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Old 01-09-2013, 04:35 AM
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This is my completed DIY AV Cabinet. It is a birch plywoof frame, primed and painted. The door is a poplar frame with wire mesh. Very simple as I subscribe to KISS method for DIY.

For more pictures head on over to my DIY budget minded home theater thread.
http://www.avsforum.com/t/1444378/joker-room-build-thread#post_22804599
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Old 03-03-2013, 01:21 AM
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I like how no one mentioned to actually turn the power off first....
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Old 03-04-2013, 07:08 AM
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Might as well put this in this thread. My current room doesn't really have any place to put a full-sized rack, so I built a minimal freestanding one from scratch. It leaves all of the cables lying exposed but has worked out pretty well:

20110401-8020-rack.jpg

It looks like it has a bit of a twist in the photo but that's just a lens artifact. It's mostly built from 80/20 aka "the industrial erector set": straight pieces of slotted aluminum and various fasteners. If/when I don't need it any longer, a few minutes with a screwdriver and hex wrench can turn it back into a pile of generic parts:

20110531-assorted-8020-parts.jpg

Ideally I would have used black extrusions for everything but they're a little harder to get, plus by using stock lengths I didn't have to cut anything. There are standard rack rails bolted to the vertical extrusions, so once it was sized properly the shelves and equipment from my old in-wall rack attached with no trouble. I put felt pads undeneath the bottom pieces so the metal isn't actually touching/scratching the wood floor.
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Old 03-04-2013, 07:22 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dododge View Post

Ideally I would have used black extrusions for everything but they're a little harder to get, plus by using stock lengths I didn't have to cut anything.
Better to just get the right tool to cut them and get the look you really want. One great way to do this is scour craigslist for a miter or chop saw. Use the saw for as long as you need and then turn around and sell it back on craigslist.

All you'd have to buy would be the correct and new blade for cutting your material. Don't assume the blade a saw will come with will be correct or anything but dull as a butter knife.
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Old 03-05-2013, 06:04 AM
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I hesitate to admit that I actually have a miter saw and specialty blades for cutting aluminum extrusions, but at the time it was all buried in a very cluttered garage building (detached and unheated) after a house move. I knew the only way to get the rack built in a timely manner was to use off-the-shelf lengths. In fact it's been almost 2 years and I still don't have the saw set up; I've cleared out enough of the mess that there is theoretically enough floor space to do it, but there's a lot of other things higher up on the to-do list.
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Old 05-13-2013, 09:46 AM
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I'll have to take some shots with a flash but here is the concept. I have one more shelf to add which will make it harder to see the speaker wire in the cable D-Rings on the left.

2f297e9215e03730a7116b71b8799b4f_zps3d472be4.jpg
9beabd2ca536f498c091978bb2d9b487_zpsfc19a1b3.jpg
ca85c5f7bc507acfc14f596de48932c8_zps996d9c59.jpg

In hindsight I would have painted the "door" frame before I wrapped it.

The MacBeth Theater (flood resilient build)
 

Play like a Raven

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Old 06-04-2013, 01:44 PM
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How many of you regret or do not regret going DIY on your rack?

What is the difference in cost ?

-

"Too much is almost enough. Anything in life worth doing is worth overdoing. Moderation is for cowards."
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Old 06-05-2013, 07:33 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mfusick View Post

How many of you regret or do not regret going DIY on your rack?

What is the difference in cost ?

For mine a DIY solution was the only solution due to my configuration. You can spend some serious coin on a nice pullout MA rack with custom face plates. It looks great but that is just not something I'd want to spend money on. If I had to guess I'd say mine was maybe $75 although that is hard to say as I used cloth from my acoustic panels which I would have had anyway and existing paint for the shelves.

For just the rack it was one sheet of MDF, paint, some rails with clips, D-rings for cable management and some Velcro to reduce vibration (could have used felt pads but already had Velcro).

The MacBeth Theater (flood resilient build)
 

Play like a Raven

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Old 09-07-2013, 12:31 AM
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I went from this:


To This:



View from next to rack looking at TV:



Up close pics, and of course I'm not finish with it yet.





This was an odd build. I am actually sharing a long storage shelf on the other side of that wall. I decided to use about 22in wide from the storage shelf and cut a hole on this side of the wall.






Cutting the hole, and framing it:








Painted and put molding around the edges:




As you can see from the pic above, I had some very large spaces to deal with. You can see I added some adjustable shelves to the rack as shown in the bottom pic.
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Old 09-26-2013, 12:46 PM
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Here is somewhat of the finished product. I say somewhat, because we are never done.





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Old 09-26-2013, 12:51 PM
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Looks good. What did you use to make the face?
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Old 09-26-2013, 01:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Spaceman View Post

Looks good. What did you use to make the face?

I used some ABS plastic. I was going to use them as a template, but I just might keep this way. I was thinking of some brush aluminum later.
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Old 11-25-2013, 07:05 AM
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Simple project once I copied ideas of this topic.....

Standard shelving brackets on back side of opening with adjustable shelves. Finished plywood cut for each component and spray painted flat black. Boxed in back side of lower shelves/media storage to prevent see through and movies from falling out the back. Not a bad look for about $50 all in....
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Old 11-25-2013, 08:25 AM
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Nicely done! I had forgotten about this thread. I need to finish off my rack cutout, and seeing yours in black makes me want to get it done. Good job!
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Old 02-04-2014, 05:44 PM
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Looks nice. I was also thinking if using abs plastic to make faces for my av rack. What thickness did you go with? What method did you use to cut and shape the abs? Jigsaw and file or razor knife? How happy are you with the results? Are you still thinking if going with a more ridged material? Thanks again and the pics above looks great. I would hope to get a similar result.
Quote:
Originally Posted by HAMP568 View Post

Here is somewhat of the finished product. I say somewhat, because we are never done.
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Old 02-05-2014, 06:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mkeyes22 View Post

Looks nice. I was also thinking if using abs plastic to make faces for my av rack. What thickness did you go with? What method did you use to cut and shape the abs? Jigsaw and file or razor knife? How happy are you with the results? Are you still thinking if going with a more ridged material? Thanks again and the pics above looks great. I would hope to get a similar result.
Quote:
Originally Posted by HAMP568 View Post

Here is somewhat of the finished product. I say somewhat, because we are never done.

Thanks!!!! If you only could have seen my eyes when I looked at your pics. I was thinking, that looks familiar.

I bought some 1/16 thick ABS panels. I used both a razor knife and dremel to shape the patterns for each device. How I feel about it, the word happy isn’t even close to how thrilled I am of how it turned out, because it was the first time I ever done anything like that before. Besides being self satisfied with what I did, I absolutely love how it looks. I’m very thrilled because it looks like it was already built and that it belongs there.

I’m not sure if I will change them out for other like I had planned. Not because I’m lazy, because in a month or so, I have to re-cut some more, for some added and exchanged equipment.


Looking at your pics, I can't tell if you framed that area or not. if you haven't I would suggest that you do. It does make it a solid build. If you look at the pic above the one showing where I painted it black, you will see the boards behind the wall panel. It will give you an idea of what I mean.
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Old 02-20-2014, 10:34 PM
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I used heat shrink tubing for some of the cable ends to finish the split loom in some places - here's a pic of the wall plate terminations (I used $0.99 banana plugs with heat shrink tube and a dyno label, and heat shrink to cover the exposed copper speaker wire as well):


 

Could you show a close-up of the banana plug terminal w/ the heat shrink? I've always been bothered by the little bit of wire that is present visible out the side of the banana plug (no logical reason just seemed somewhat unclean) . I'm going to give this a shot. Do you remember what size shrink you used?

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Old 02-23-2014, 11:35 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by osufhall View Post

Could you show a close-up of the banana plug terminal w/ the heat shrink? I've always been bothered by the little bit of wire that is present visible out the side of the banana plug (no logical reason just seemed somewhat unclean) . I'm going to give this a shot. Do you remember what size shrink you used?

Hi All,

Sorry I haven't been on AVS much lately - many other renos going on in the house, so the HT has not had much changes as of late (other than trying to keep drywall dust out of it wink.gif).

As for the heat shrink, I do not recall the specific sizes I used - I had picked up a bunch of various diameters and colors at a local automotive store for this project (as well as for going wild wiring my house with customs LEDs and other nerdy projects). As long as you select tubing with a slightly larger diameter to the wire or loom you're working on, most of the brands seem to shrink down quite nicely to form fit.

Here's a pic of some terminals before applying the shrink for reference:



A bit brighter pic of the finished terminals behind the rack:



and a bit of a closer-up of the plugs/wires with heat shrink applied:



The easiest steps for assembling things (if you are also using split loom) is to apply it to the wires first, solder or crimp your terminal, shrink the tubing, then apply the larger shrink to the joint where the split loom terminates at the wires - this way, the larger shrink will overlap the existing shrink on the two wires and makes for a clean look.

I would have taken a pic of the open plugs and solder job for you, but I would have to trash the heat shrink on there to get at that little screw to release the cover.
I hope that helps!

Cheers,
Tom
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Old 04-05-2014, 07:07 PM
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Well it's a long time in the making but here is my phase 1 attempt. I am pretty happy using the abs plastic alone. Took me forever to trim this out

And here are some build pics. [IMG][IMG]
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