6u modular synth in an antique case - plus, halp?

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HeWhoWantsJeans
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6u modular synth in an antique case - plus, halp?

Postby HeWhoWantsJeans » Sun Feb 21, 2010 6:49 pm

Good evening all,

I don't know you, but I was recommended to check you and yours out. I'm currently doing a project of housing an 84hp, 6u Eurorack modular inside an antique suitcase. A draft of the plan is here.

I'm looking into material options - and I've realized that I could save more room for the left-panel by using a thinner material... say, metal. However, I have no experience working with metal and I'm wondering if anyone has suggestions (or wants to volunteer, it's a simple box with a few holes - I swear!)

Anyhow, any advice / help in getting a basic frame made would be awesome. As the project progresses, I'll post images and if anyone has questions - pop em up.

Addendum: after unpacking a ModularWorld power supply I just got from BigCityMusic and sizing it up with some TS169 vector rails from DigiKey, I see that size is a bit tighter than I originally planned so I'll be using the sides of the suitcase for mounting the rails and only adding a wall down the depth of the 'case.

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metis
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Re: 6u modular synth in an antique case - plus, halp?

Postby metis » Sun Feb 21, 2010 9:07 pm

metal comes to mind, specifically aluminum angle, btu even if you've no expierence, sheet aluminum and self tapping screws or even pop rivets will probably do most of the burlyness you require.

traditionally for road cases you're gonna use baltic birch plywood, which is more robust for most things and gives the system a non-systemic failure (when it's over stressed part of it breaks instead of deforming as metal will, possibly damaging several components as it transfers stress) 3/8" is the typical thickness.

i miss building cases....

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HeWhoWantsJeans
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Re: 6u modular synth in an antique case - plus, halp?

Postby HeWhoWantsJeans » Sun Feb 21, 2010 9:16 pm

metis wrote:metal comes to mind, specifically aluminum angle, btu even if you've no expierence, sheet aluminum and self tapping screws or even pop rivets will probably do most of the burlyness you require.

First I had this huge drive to go with aluminum, but after I re-examined the suitcase and figured out that I can't fit in the frame I re-hit the drawing board.
metris wrote:traditionally for road cases you're gonna use baltic birch plywood, which is more robust for most things and gives the system a non-systemic failure (when it's over stressed part of it breaks instead of deforming as metal will, possibly damaging several components as it transfers stress) 3/8" is the typical thickness.

...and when I hit it, I went with the idea of using wood. I just realized that if, instead of doing a full-height divider, I could just do a 3" slat that was as deep as the suitcase and mount it to the front / back of the suitcase and be done with it. That way I have about 2" of clearance for cabling under the divider and it's the simplest thing -ever-.

I'm kind of lumber-stupid, can I get 'baltic birch plywood' at Menards / Home Depot?

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heuermh
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Re: 6u modular synth in an antique case - plus, halp?

Postby heuermh » Mon Feb 22, 2010 3:04 pm

I'm kind of lumber-stupid, can I get 'baltic birch plywood' at Menards / Home Depot?

Rockler in Minneapolis or Eden Prairie will have it

http://www.rockler.com/product.cfm?page ... ic%20birch

or Woodcraft in Bloomington

http://www.woodcraft.com/Search/Search. ... ic%20birch

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Re: 6u modular synth in an antique case - plus, halp?

Postby Booka » Mon Feb 22, 2010 3:57 pm

There is also a Rockler at Ridgedale, and the Home Depot in Brooklyn Park at Boone and 694 has a selection of various hardwoods including birch.

But look to your local store too, if there are any craftsmen / craftswomen in the area, they may stock a basic supply.

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jtbarclay
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Re: 6u modular synth in an antique case - plus, halp?

Postby jtbarclay » Mon Feb 22, 2010 4:57 pm

Rockler in maplewood too, from my experience none of the stores stock very much of anything, so you might end up having to order it online and have it shipped to the store for free. Or if you ship it to your residence, they use spee dee delivery, when I placed my order shipping was like $4 and came the next day.

I've also found it at Michaels, 2'x1'x1/8" for ~$4 and most hobby stores like hub also carry it.

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metis
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Re: 6u modular synth in an antique case - plus, halp?

Postby metis » Mon Feb 22, 2010 5:16 pm

it's a pretty standard thing at most "real" lumber yards. for you needs it's probably cheaper to hit a menards or home despot that will have a "project sheet" which will be 24x48 or 24x24 in far more flavors than their "stock" of full sheets. a full sheet isn't too bad, and i know siwek's up in NE has what you're after. (plus they're nice, local, and support tc maker)

notably, you'll pay ~50% of the price of a full sheet for a quarter sheet, so if you ever anticipate needing it again, it's worth the full sheet price point.

the thing to ask for is "clear no voids" and filled or sanded surfaces. you're asking for no empty spots in the middle of the board, and smooth surfaces that are more suitable for painting and mounting w/o big splinters.

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HeWhoWantsJeans
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Re: 6u modular synth in an antique case - plus, halp?

Postby HeWhoWantsJeans » Tue Feb 23, 2010 12:14 am

Tonight I went out and bought a slew of hardware (I bought stand-offs for some 'boards before UPS finally delivered them today, which didn't fit...) and I asked one of the lads at the ACE Hardware "where can I get some good quality plywood?"

Rockler was his first option. Second was some woodworking place just outside of Lake Calhoun, by the Caribou by the Whole Foods. I figure I'll hit the internets and call them tomorrow.

Failing that, I just might end up at Rockler in Ridgedale. I have a pal in New Hope who is opting to help me do the (few) wood cuts I need and assemble this thing. I figure I swing out, get a small amount of lumber (I really only do a project like this once in... years?) and look forward to a night of sawing and screwing.

I'll be updating my Flickr page as things develop and if anyone is interested, I'll post pictures and such.

Thanks!
Erik

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noise
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Re: 6u modular synth in an antique case - plus, halp?

Postby noise » Tue Feb 23, 2010 8:13 am

This sounds like a cool project, are you going to haul your synth over to Handmade Music to show it off?
Make it happen.

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HeWhoWantsJeans
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Re: 6u modular synth in an antique case - plus, halp?

Postby HeWhoWantsJeans » Tue Feb 23, 2010 9:19 am

noise wrote:This sounds like a cool project, are you going to haul your synth over to Handmade Music to show it off?

I hadn't thought about it, since it's not really going to do much initially. As of now, the only modules I have are a WMD Geiger Counter, a f(h) Sound of Shadows two utility Doepfer modules (A-119 and A-190-2).

Maybe after I add a few more modules (this stuff is like crack, by the way). At the moment it's kind of a two-trick pony, but it'll have plenty of space to expand. :)


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