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Rack Mounting Radio Equipment

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blantonl

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I'm not very well versed on the concepts of rack mounting radio equipment, however I am interested in understanding how the installation process works for most radios out there today.

So how *do* you actually install a rack mount capable radio into a rack?

Take for instance the Icom R9500 - it comes with Rack Mounted handles and a kit, however I don't understand the installation process. Do you just bolt it in from the front and that front bracket alone supports the entire radio? Or do most radios have side rails? What are some good methods for getting the radio in the rack in the first place (just holding 75 pounds and bolting in is impossible)

Thanks,
 

Thayne

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You are right about it being difficult to hold a Heavy rack mounted piece of equipment, sometimes it seems like those 10-32 screws (Even if there are 4 or more) would not be sufficient. The best option is to have someone help from behind or if it is a small rack you can lay the whole thing down on its' back and drop the equipment in and let gravity hold it.
It has actually gotten better since the old days, because most things are generally lighter and they don't need heavy transformers, etc as much as before.
One thing for sure, I don't even try things anymore that I used to do, I just get someone to help.
 

fireman846

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i second that im 30 and have a torn up back from the army and ive been doin odd ball jobs that i used to do alone and now i have to have someone there to give me a hand now! rack mounts can be tricky i i used to be in the communications bussiness and we had one heck of a time putting in the servers the battery backups and all the switches and everything else in them.
 

AK9R

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Do you just bolt it in from the front and that front bracket alone supports the entire radio?
Generally, yes.

I've seen rack-mount cabinets that have rails in both the front and back of the cabinet so you can attach things in two points rather than just the front. I've also seen shelves and slides (like drawer slides). The slides I've seen attach in both front and back to support heavy equipment.

Here's a link that shows shelves and slides:

http://www.budind.com/accessories.shtml
 
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tonsoffun

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I'm not very well versed on the concepts of rack mounting radio equipment, however I am interested in understanding how the installation process works for most radios out there today.

So how *do* you actually install a rack mount capable radio into a rack?

Take for instance the Icom R9500 - it comes with Rack Mounted handles and a kit, however I don't understand the installation process. Do you just bolt it in from the front and that front bracket alone supports the entire radio? Or do most radios have side rails? What are some good methods for getting the radio in the rack in the first place (just holding 75 pounds and bolting in is impossible)

Thanks,
Yes, those six metric screws hold that entire radio in a rack, amazing eh. Remember when installing those bolts that you screw/bolt the correct ones in there proper location, I believe there is three different lenghts.

Even though they are screw to the front of the radio, they are still screwed to the whole casing so it would be super strong. Never seen side rails before but did see actual shelves that support really heavy equipment like ups's etc.

If you can't tip over your rack or get help to install the Icom maybe make a support out of wood (2X4's) for the height you want then slid the unit on to that support in the rack, then your not holding up anything when installing the rack bolts to hold the Icom.:cool:

LOL W9RXR beat me to some answers
 
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iMONITOR

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I'm not very well versed on the concepts of rack mounting radio equipment, however I am interested in understanding how the installation process works for most radios out there today.

So how *do* you actually install a rack mount capable radio into a rack?

Thanks,
Lindsay, this seller on Ebay offers a lot of options for rack mounting radio equipment, especially Icom gear. Be sure to check out his rack mounted speakers too.

rfrobins

eBay Seller: rfrobins: Electronics, Business Industrial items on eBay.com

I've personally used his mounts for the Icom IC-R75, and IC-R8500, and the 4-speaker rack. They are made very well, and the fit and finish are excellent!

You can also buy the rack mount shelfs with blank front plates, and have a local shop machine a cut-out opening for scanners, etc.

There is some rack mounted Icom gear for sale on eHam.net also. I'm not sure if it's still available:

Google Image Result for http://www.eham.net/data/classifieds/images/304663.jpg


Be sure to look for all the rack mounted power options for your project as well. Multi-outlet strips with surge protection, large capacity UPS's, DC power supplies too.


Bill
 
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jim202

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Take it from someone that mounts equipment all the time, take your time in planning out what
you want to do. Racks have the screw holes in the rails so that they will match up with a 1U rack
panel. If you take the time to place your radio mounting rails or brackets up against the vertical
rack rails. You will notice that they will not match up with the holes in all places. You have to
slide the bracket up or down till the holes match the slots or holes in the bracket.

As for mounting heavy equipment into racks, there are a number of ways to do that. You can
install a shelf below the heavy equipment to help support it. You can use slide out rails that
mount to the equipment and extend out the rear of the equipment and get supported by a
second set of vertical rails in the rear. These type of racks will be of some sort of cabinet
construction. They can come with removable side covers and also doors for the front and
rear. Bottom line is the racks for large heavy equipment don't come cheap. depending on
what you pick and the options, you can see these racks go from between $500 and $2000.
They can even be ordered with casters on the bottom so you can roll them around.

Not that I am picking any one vendor, but you could go on line and look at "Mid Atlantic" and
get an idea of what is available. Their site has about as good of a selection of all sorts of
racks, slides, shelfs, side panels, rack panels, casters and so on.

Forgot to add that you can get the rack rails with either 10 x 32 screw threads or 12 x 24
screw threads. The choice is yours and make sure you have the correct screws when
you go to do the install. Point to make here is that the 10 x 32 screws will fit into the
12 x 24 holes, but you will find out fast that they won't tighten up.

Jim





I'm not very well versed on the concepts of rack mounting radio equipment, however I am interested in understanding how the installation process works for most radios out there today.

So how *do* you actually install a rack mount capable radio into a rack?

Take for instance the Icom R9500 - it comes with Rack Mounted handles and a kit, however I don't understand the installation process. Do you just bolt it in from the front and that front bracket alone supports the entire radio? Or do most radios have side rails? What are some good methods for getting the radio in the rack in the first place (just holding 75 pounds and bolting in is impossible)

Thanks,
 
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zz0468

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If the equipment has a factory option to rack mount it, I just put my faith in those front panel screws. They haven't let me down.

I also rack mount some equipment that is not intended for rack mounting. In that case, I use a rack mount shelf and just set the equipment on the shelf. I also am a fan of the rfrobbins rack mount kits sold on eBay.

As for getting that 75 lbs into the rack, there are a couple of methods I use. If it's the first and only thing in the rack, I might temporarily install a shelf, and set it on that. If I'm building up a rack of equipment, I start at the bottom, and work up, setting the next piece in on top of the item below. But sometimes you really just have to grunt and groan while you hold that 75 lbs in place with one arm and get that first screw started.

Have fun with that! =)
 

Dirge

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Be sure to look for all the rack mounted power options for your project as well. Multi-outlet strips with surge protection, large capacity UPS's, DC power supplies too.
Also don't forget things like headphone hangers, lights, etc.


Plus, racks come in all sorts of shapes and sizes. Some mount to the wall, some are travel cases, for the desktop, and sometimes built into the desk!


Check out www.markertek.com and search for rack. It'll come back with 388 pages!
 

blantonl

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I've already got a Mid Atlantic rack on wheels... but I'm now going to start using it for mounting radio equipment in....
 

milf

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Hey boss, post pics once you have the project rolling, I would love to see how creative you get.
 

Dustin

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Hey Lindsay,

Don't know it this will give you any ideas but it's my radio room with rack mounting in (slow) progress.

Dustin
 

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mike_s104

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I start at the bottom, and work up, setting the next piece in on top of the item below. But sometimes you really just have to grunt and groan while you hold that 75 lbs in place with one arm and get that first screw started.
For servers and network equipment, this is true. Heaviest on the bottom and work your way up. If you need general rack hardware like screws and some basic patch panels, shelves, or cable management, I've have good luck here:

Patch Panel | Server Rack | Computer Rack | L-com.com
 
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