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Author Topic: Rack design  (Read 9328 times)

Tim Weaver

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Rack design
« Reply #10 on: December 23, 2012, 06:36:48 pm »

Sketchup requires you to create the rack gear which you can then save as a component.

It's labor intensive, but it's also free.

Quite easy to learn too, and you'll probably find a million uses for it. Otherwise I would suggest stardraw. It is the proper way to do what you want to do.
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Tomin Tollefsen

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Re: Rack design
« Reply #11 on: December 23, 2012, 06:47:22 pm »

It would seem that I have to find the cash for Stardraw. It seems like the best software for my use.
I might be able to only buy som eof the modules.
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Ivan Beaver

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Re: Rack design
« Reply #12 on: December 23, 2012, 07:23:39 pm »

Many great replies.
Thanks guys.

More spesific, I'm thinking about the layout of the racks, complete with I/O-panels and blockdiagrams of connections.
I've looked at stardraw design 7, which looks great (tried the demo), but is quite expencive if I'm getting all of the modules.

I don't know if autoCAD or Sketch up has libraries for sound equipment.

The main use is not for self use, but we are selling speakers with complete racks (turn-key solutions) and it would be great to give potential customers a overview and a nice looking layout. Also, some customers want custom solutions, so having a software (like stardraw) would help a lot i creating that.

Pen and paper is my current tools =)
If that is what you are doing-I would add (besides the basic layout drawings) also block diagrams of the jacks-processing amps etc.

Put it in a plastic sleeve and attach to the inside of the rack and the rear door.  This makes it much easier to troubleshoot.

It depends on how much of this you plan on doing and what your time is worth (like using a free program that you have to  do all the work).

With Stardraw-you can produce really nice frontal drawings by simply selecting the proper amp etc and sticking it in.  Drawing it yourself could take quite a while.

I have my own libraries of custom drawings I have done-so just drop it in and go.

Also depending on what you are doing-maybe just get the audio version to begin with.  It may do everything you need it to.  No need to buy more than you actually need. As far as I know (could easily be wrong), the only difference between the different programs is the libraries.   
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Bob Leonard

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Re: Rack design
« Reply #13 on: December 23, 2012, 09:35:43 pm »

How about Visio?
I have done wiring diagrams and stuff with Visio, you can download the .jpgs from google and then import them into Visio.

A good choice any drawing of this type. The nice feature is being able to import almost anything for use with the drawing. The gotcha is that if you send the file to someone they'll need Visio to modify it.
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Steven Barnes

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Re: Rack design
« Reply #14 on: December 24, 2012, 02:23:19 am »

Check out Middle Atlantic Rack Tools Software (Free) http://www.racktools.com for rack layout. It has all their product built in, but you can make user defined pieces in whatever dimension you want.

For custom panels RCI Custom Panels has a free tool called Panel Designer (Free) http://www.rcicustom.com/main.php?page=36

I have been looking at a license for stardraw for quite a while, but I have not been able to justify the price for the limits.

I use AutoCAD for all line diagrams, racks, panels if I have the time. Both of the tools above are drag and drop.

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Tomin Tollefsen

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Re: Rack design
« Reply #15 on: December 24, 2012, 06:15:30 am »

I'm planning on including diagrams and instructions on my racks for ease of use. Althoug, it would only be placed inside the rack, as I hate loose rack doors, and are going for 19" racks with doors that can be folded in to the rack.

I guess I can start making a good library in sketchup or CAD but, as you mention, this will take a lot of time.

I'm checking out Rack Tools as we speak. Will come back with my thoughts on that.

As for stardraw prices, I think they have dropped the concept of one version for A/V, one for audio etc. In stardraw 7 you only buy modules, and then a specified number of libraries. Maybe I can cut the cost there, and buy fewer libraries.
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Brad Weber

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Re: Rack design
« Reply #16 on: December 28, 2012, 08:34:45 am »

I don't know if autoCAD or Sketch up has libraries for sound equipment.
They don't but you can create your own 'library', that effort is part of what you are paying when you purchase the Stardraw libraries.
 
Think about what you need to or may want to do.  Do you ever need to work on architectural backgrounds provided by others?  Do you need to work in 3-D?  Do you want to be able to open, import or work with AutoCAD or Revit files?  How much time do you want to invest in learning the software?  Do you want to create equipment lists, quotes, run lists, cable and/or equipment labels, etc. direct from the drawing?  Do you want to show indvidual conductors and/or bundled/multipair cable, create wiring details and so on?  Do you want a drawing to look generic or to be able to create your own 'look'?  These types of factors may help determine what tool is right for you.
 
For example, over the years I've looked at and/or worked with Stardraw, d-tools, VidCAD, Vectorworks, various versions of AutoCAD and some other options.  For what I do AutoCAD has always made the most sense but that is greatly because I typically work with Architects and Electrical Engineers and being able to work with one another's drawings is crucial.  AutoCAD LT is under $600 and is all many people need.
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Re: Rack design
« Reply #16 on: December 28, 2012, 08:34:45 am »


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