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Author Topic: Custom Panels for Station  (Read 835 times)
KA1MUY
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Posts: 10




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« on: October 29, 2002, 02:55:18 PM »

I am looking for some information on a vendor who would be able to take a template with drawings/measurements of my station equipment and create a custom panel so I could mount the radios and misc. equipment of my station, and just have the faces coming through the panel. In the back I would have it open for connecting cables and power. In fact, the panel would be mounted in a false wall and the equipment would actually be in a closet with ventilation for heat and sound proofing for the amp and power supplies and fans.
Thanks!
Scott C.
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WB2WIK
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Posts: 20666




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« Reply #1 on: October 29, 2002, 05:22:07 PM »

A custom panel made of what material?

To try to do this "remotely," e.g. via mail-order, is very risky.  I can almost guarantee that no matter what the vendor did, you would not be satisfied with the results.  It's way better to deal with a local shop and be there to give them personal instruction while they are cutting the panel.

If you want it made of wood, most industrial lumber yards have this facility (jigsaws, rotary saws, bandsaws, table saws, routers, planers, sanders) and will charge very little to do this sort of work in plywood or other suitable material.

If you want it made of plastic, let your fingers do the walking through your local Yellow Pages and find a plastic supplier -- they are everywhere.  Every one of them I've ever dealt with will make anything you want made out of plexiglas, Lucite, Lexan and a variety of suitable and rugged plastic materials.  One advantage of plastic is that you can heat and curve most of the materials to make free-form panels that are very elegant and don't cost much.

WB2WIK/6
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N5EG
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« Reply #2 on: November 12, 2002, 08:41:46 AM »

I've made custom panels very simply and inexpensively using 1/4-inch hardboard ("Masonite") and plastic laminate ("Formica"). Home Depot, etc. have all the materials in small sizes.

The hardboard is easy to cut and shape to fit the equipment face. I used a jigsaw and rasp to get a perfect fit. Then, glue the laminate with contact adhesive to the hardboard. Use a router with a flush-trim (laminate trimming) bit to clear the laminate out of the previously-formed opening in the hardboard.

My panels we 19" wide to fit rack-mount openings. Looks great, easy to change, inexpensive.
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KA4WJA
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Posts: 704




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« Reply #3 on: November 15, 2002, 02:22:15 AM »

Scott,
I believe I have the definative answer for you.....
I use "Custom Cut-Out" panels  and "Custom Rackmounts"(with custom cut-outs) quite often....
The ones I use are VERY strong and are VERY VERY nice to look at.....
They are designed to hold "Home Theatre" equipment, in racks or cabinets, in peoples living rooms...(you know the guys with the $500,000 / 5000sq ft houses...)

They are called:  
"RSH Custom Rackmounts"....
made/sold by, Middle Atalantic Products, Inc. in NJ...
(They have distributors all over...check out their website at www.middleatlantic.com)
The specific page which has the RSH Custom Rack mounts on it is:
www.middleatlantic.com/rackac/main.htm#rsh

These Custom Rackmounts can be ordered to fit just about ANY front panel dimensions, and any specific "cut-outs", notches, cooling vents, etc. will also be accomodated.....
They also have a plethora of other accessories, such as vent panels, blank panels, fans, etc, etc, etc....
As well as many, many types/styles and sizes of racks, rack cabinets, etc.....(all VERY strong)

Middle Atlantic stocks (or has on hand the specs/templates for) most all the "custom cut-outs" for most of the consumer electronics equipment on the market in the last 10-15 years.....stereos, vcrs, dvd players, etc, etc....
BUT, The RSH Custom Rackmounts are in essence "custom".....and that is the way I typically order them.....
Simply give them the PRECISE measurements needed.....
(they NEED measurements to be within 1/16", BUT they recommend giving them measurements to within 1/32"!!!)
They will cut the panel to whatever measurement you give them....AND it WILL be exactly as you spec'd!!!
In over 15 years of doing business with them, I've never found ANY problem at all!!!


Good luck.
73,
John,   KA4WJA

 
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