Most people are familiar with the industry standard for measuring vertical panel space within a rack. Are you going to need additional width or depth to allow cables to flow beyond the equipment being mounted? Do you think about the future and plan for expansion? If so, do you buy a cabinet with enough panel height to accommodate that?
You might also be buying a 42u rack for the same reasons you have always used it, but this time you need something smaller. These decisions can have significant costs as well as functional impacts, as the price of the rack is heavily influenced by the cost of metal.
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KNOW HOW COOL YOU NEED TO BE
Are there louvers or perforations on all surfaces if you plan to mount components that generate heat? Is it ready to be used as an exhaust fan? Do you intend to install an air conditioner, water cooling system or other system that is more closed?
WEIGHT IS IMPORTANT
What weight can you put in the rack? How will it be distributed? Although all cabinet racks have weight limits, it is not always clear that they can be adjusted based on whether weight is evenly distributed or if it is loaded at the top or bottom. Will the components need to be able to move freely for service purposes or are they stable?
DO YOU REQUIRE ACCESSORIES TO GO WITH THIS?
You need to consider what other accessories you will need with the rack, and whether or not the vendor can supply it. These could be as simple as extra mounting rails for additional support or cable mounting brackets or casters or more complicated (ventilated slide-out shelving, power outlets strips or internal lighting). You should also consider whether the cabinet rack can accept these accessories, even if they are not manufactured by your enclosure manufacturer.
Sometimes you may need an extra item and it is important that you let us know in advance so we can arrange delivery. To speed up installation, customization can be as easy as filling the rack with the necessary accessories. Non-standard heights and other dimensions, as well as special colors and mounting provisions, can all be complicated and time-consuming. All of these require extra time.
It is easy to choose a cabinet rack if you consider your installation and future plans. A quick phone call to your distributor will give you all the information you need to make a decision.