EuroRack Custom Build - Consideration for Wooden Enclosures

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EuroRack Custom Build - Consideration for Wooden Enclosures

Post by Revert »

Hello ....

I am building a custom EuroRack case (wood) and I was wondering what the main dos/don't are. Specifically regarding mounting of the PSU and earthing.

Any info appreciated.

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Re: EuroRack Custom Build - Consideration for Wooden Enclosu

Post by Graham Hinton »

Revert wrote: I am building a custom EuroRack case (wood) and I was wondering what the main dos/don't are. Specifically regarding mounting of the PSU and earthing.
Don't put the PSU, distribution and earthing in last as an afterthought as so many do. Plan it first.

Don't build a case like a fitted kitcen. The one and maybe only thing that can be absolutely guaranteed is that you will change your mind. When not if and probably before it is even finished. Plan for change.

Allow more depth than the collection of modules that you currently have.

The way I always recommend cases to be built is with 19" rack bars integrated at the rear, however wide the case is. Rack bars are cheap, strengthen the case and allow for mounting PSUs, ventilation panels and connectors out of the way. They also allow rear access for plugging up the power cables.
Here's one example:


The 0Vs of the PSUs should be connected to main Earth for both safety and common 0V reference. This is not a preference or optional. Many systems are not earthed properly, don't copy bad practise.
Last edited by Graham Hinton on Mon Dec 08, 2014 4:09 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Post by ezehagar »

Absolutely overkill. ^^^^^^

Just decided what power you are going to use and make sure it will fit.
You can just drill a couple holes at the bottom and top of you need ventilation.

Dont overthink it. It's just a box...

You will probably make another soon enough, either for yourself or for a friend.

Most of all, have fun!
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Post by Matos »

Graham speaks the truth. When it comes to power Hinton doesn't play around. Better done right than done poorly, repeatedly, like purgatory.
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Post by roglok »

Matos wrote:Graham speaks the truth.
see below
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Post by fuzzbass »

roglok wrote:
Matos wrote:Graham speaks the truth.
see below
Regardless of how you arrange your power, pay attention to what Graham said about earthing. You need to build a common earthing point using quality copper components, and tie all grounds in the system back to it in a star configuration. This is a reference, but critically, it is a drain for faults. All the conductors in the Earth system should be heftier than the conductors supplying the power. So long as power is connected, the ground path should be undefeatable (no fuses, switches, etc). Mechanical connections (crimp, screwdown) are better than solder for this.

Unless you know how to work safely with line voltage, you are advised to employ a self contained external unit, wall wart or brick, that brings stepped down DC or AC voltage into your case. Most of the DIY power supply projects work from a single rail low voltage external source, and derive dual power from that. These supplies are safer to work with, but are only rated up to about 1A - which is to say you should stay about 35% below that. For larger systems, you use multiples of these. When determining clearance in your case, look at the filter caps used on these supplies to find the depth needed.

Depending on a number of factors, your PSU may produce significant heat. For example, a supply that is accepting stepped down AC, and operated close to its limits, is going to express some heat. The drivers on this supply will need heat sinks, and ventilation must be provided.
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Post by Eloc »

The rack bars in the back may be a bit overkill, but everything else is good advice.

Construction-wise and PSU-wise, it all depends on how big you're planning... Small and you could use one of those wallwart-power-supply-module-flying-bus-board-jobbies. Big systems, it's better to get a linear PSU and thus need to think about leaving adequate space in the case for this.
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Post by timpecter »

Any rules of thumb for ventilation? I have a onboard transformer with power regs and heat sinks and I was thinking of just drilling a few holes in the plywood back panel of my enclosure. Should I make a larger hole and fit it with a grille?
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