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Want to create a eurorack panel, need to know standards
MUFF WIGGLER Forum Index -> Music Tech DIY Goto page 1, 2  Next [all]
Author Want to create a eurorack panel, need to know standards
Tronketz
The panel size and screw hole placement are easy to find. What I would like some help with is knowing what people generally use for jacks, knobs, and pots ensuring that the parts I buy have a good level of quality.

Also, what about spacing of parts? How close do you put jacks and pots together if you're trying to cram functionality? What are the measurements for this?

Thanks for your help in advance! Example FPDs would also be great that show off minimum spacing that most are using.
CJ Miller
I am also starting to do some Eurorack DIY. Everything so far has been 4U or desktop cases. But there are some great Euro modules out there so the thought has been there.

Last week I worked on a Schroff VME case, moving the rails, removing the switch PSU. Will probably throw one of my PowerOne supplies in there.

My ideas for parts are probably not going to be popular! I am using high-quality 1/8" pots, because I have them. And bananas instead of 1/8" jacks, just because I hate 1/8" jacks. And love bananas. It's peanut butter jelly time! This means that other Euro modules I may eventually buy will require some adaptation. Pushbutton switches are C&K, I just discovered these and they rock. Rotary switches are Grayhill, because they are small, nice quality, and I have them already. Knobs I have yet to decide, probably some surplus.

Spacing I have experimented with. 0.75" is the closest I want the hardware to be. With tiny pots I have gotten them closer but they are a pain to use. Bananas can be closer if necessary, but too close and stacking cables will not quite fit next to each other.
Soy Sos
Tronketz,
You're getting back into Euro?
After all of the.....?
Soy Sos
.....fuss
ersatzplanet
For all the mechanical and electrical details for the Eurorack standard as implemented by Doepfer (the most emulated standard vs. AS) can be found on this page on his site:

http://www.doepfer.de/a100_man/a100m_e.htm

It had panel dimensions and Chassis dimensions, for electrical specs on the power bus for here:

http://www.doepfer.de/a100_man/a100t_e.htm

-James
EDIT ******

OK too early in the morning - didn't read all the OP. For jacks you have a lot of choices mainly based on weather you want PCB parallel to the front panel or perpendicular. The trend is parallel now for making skiff friendly modules. The jacks we use are similar to the KobiConn 161-0352-EX jacks that mouser offers but are made by Lih Sheng - LJE0352. As far as spacing I take Doepfer as a general rule for as the tightest you can go, which is around .5" for the jacks and .8" for the pots. These are the tightest I would go.
For pots and jacks, all are ok they just have to fit with the jack heights if PCBs are parallel. In our case we break the PCB and have the jacks on a different level on some products and use standoffs and have the pots not bolted to the front panel on others. We use pots that are soldered to the PCB with separate mounting legs so they are quite sturdy.
Knobs again are whatever works. A lot of makers were using Rean but since Neutrik has stopped Rean knob production everyone are planning other options. If you are buying quantities then of course there are many other options. I would go with a company with a good variety line like Selco/Sifam. If the quantities are small places like Small Bear have a variety of knobs of different types. We buy their Davies clones.

Here in the Pacific Northwest we have formed a small organization called the Mostly Modular Trade Association and one of its main purposes was to share inventories to buy bigger quantities to get prices down. Join with local makers of gear and see if they use pots and jacks like you want and join in with them in their parts buys - both of you can save a lot of cash that way. You can also come onboard the MMTA if you want also.

Good luck!
-James
Tronketz
Soy Sos wrote:
Tronketz,
You're getting back into Euro?
After all of the.....?

.....fuss


cry I miss eurorack, it was my first love, and with all first loves, you never forget. I abandoned eurorack because of the cost of pre-made modules and sometimes running into modules from doepfer that were criminally low quality (one of their VCAs for example, some modules I did like though). To solve this I turned to MOTM so I could get into DIY to save money and have modules that were designed with quality in mind (bridechamber offers 15v circuit boards, so I didn't think Eurorack would work for this). Then I abandoned MOTM because I hated how much space it wasted and went 100% DIY. Actually, even MOTM had its quality issues, MOTM 420 has an irritating design flaw. I've learned that there's no such thing as high quality, there's only: "do I like how it sounds?"

But the only reason I didn't just go back to eurorack was because I already had many 1/4" jacks and cables. It was easy for me just to continue with 1/4". But I just can't take it anymore, I've contemplated my panel designs a million times to save space but there's just too many design problems. It'll never be as small and sleek as eurorack.

Eurorack solves all my panel design problems because of 1/8" jacks and incremental panel size. I have to go back to Eurorack. I even hate how cumbersome it is to plug and unplug 1/4" cables. However, I'm not going back to 12v anytime soon. I'm not selling my circuit boards. I may buy a 12v PSU and 12v modules in the future if I need some pre-made stuff.

I was never more happy with my synthesizer than when I had eurorack.
Tronketz
So, been trying to figure this out. Does anyone have an FPD example of a eurorack module that approximates these designs? Or if you could just tell me the spacing they use, that would be perfect. It would help to have exact numbers to work with.

Design by Intellijel (cramped knobs): http://www.analoguehaven.com/intellijeldesigns/uatt/

Designed by Doepfer (standard knob spacing): http://www.analoguehaven.com/doepfer/a130/
mamonu
ok why dont you try your luck with frac format?
and you can use all your 15V PCBS this way.... euro is nice but frac is a little bit easier for DIY (at least for a newb like me...)

eurorack DIY is slightly more advanced since its well usually smaller

And you always need to take notice of the PCB depth or resolve into

Ninja ninja-DIY skills Ninja

IMHO i think that euro DIY is what people get into when they have done DIY for a while and they can handle the small and cramped conditions of trying to have everything but the sink in a small (in width and depth) PCB...
I think its ideal also for SMD soldering. by robots or very clever people.


so have a look at frac.



PS

(or sell me your filled &working +-15V pcbs )
lol lol lol lol lol



PS2 .for euro have a look at some of negativspace/clarck78 designs.. i think if you search you can find a nice fpd by negativspace as well
Soy Sos
I dunno bro,
I just remember how much you used to complain about about Eurorack,
never able to quite find what you were looking for.
I bought all your 1/8 cables in fact (thank you very much thumbs up )
Tronketz
Soy Sos wrote:
I dunno bro,
I just remember how much you used to complain about about Eurorack,
never able to quite find what you were looking for.
I bought all your 1/8 cables in fact (thank you very much thumbs up )

Yep, well it's time to go full circle. I've journeyed throughout the analog synth lands in search of the analog holy grail and am finally returning home. I've found what I was looking for, all I need to do now is put it behind a eurorack panel. PCB size won't be a problem with my DIY case.

The DIY community has made it possible for me to have an amazing analog synthesizer. Can't wait to finally do it right.
Tronketz
CJ Miller wrote:
My ideas for parts are probably not going to be popular! I am using high-quality 1/8" pots, because I have them.
Could you tell me what pots you are using and if possible how I could get them? I'm looking for smaller pots. 1/8" might be much smaller than I need, but any help for finding smaller pots than Alpha Taiwan would be much appreciated I'm trying to fit pots 16mm (.63in) apart.

On that note, I'm trying to create a 4HP panel with 4 knobs and 4 jacks... actually it'll ultimately be 8HP with 8 knobs 8 jacks. If anyone could tell me what kind of parts this would require to make it fit, please tell me, I'm desperate for information! we're not worthy
negativspace
If you plan to use knobs, 16mm is pretty tight for pot spacing. Your knobs would nearly (if not actually) touch - many Euro modules have 16mm knobs and even with 12s there's no finger room at all.

If you want to do 4/4 in 4hp, it's actually pretty easy. You can't deviate much from the layout in the photo, but it fits comfortably enough. You'll want the 'standard' Kobiconn 16PJ138 jacks (Mouser) or similar, spaced 5mm from the edge and 10mm apart. You can use Alpha 12mm or 9mm pots with no issues, and possibly 16s if the holes are at least ~21-22mm apart.

Tronketz
Hey Negativspace I heard you have FPDs laying around. In any case...

we're not worthy we're not worthy we're not worthy
mamonu
Tronketz wrote:
Hey Negativspace I heard you have FPDs laying around. In any case...

we're not worthy we're not worthy we're not worthy


use the force luke...


"the search"
Tronketz
Alright, here we go, my first eurorack panel.

Do you foresee any problems? I couldn't figure out the size of the screw for the jack. Is it 3.6mm in diameter? I gotta know this so I know my labels won't get covered by it.
fivesteppath
Tronkets: How are you getting away with 5mm clearance top and bottom? I usually take 10mm for both ends. I think you might be able to get away with 9mm, but that might be too tight.
Junk Rhythm
fivesteppath wrote:
Tronkets: How are you getting away with 5mm clearance top and bottom? I usually take 10mm for both ends. I think you might be able to get away with 9mm, but that might be too tight.


As fivesteppath states, you will need 10mm on each side to clear the rails.
CJ Miller
Tronketz wrote:
CJ Miller wrote:
My ideas for parts are probably not going to be popular! I am using high-quality 1/8" pots, because I have them.
Could you tell me what pots you are using and if possible how I could get them? I'm looking for smaller pots. 1/8" might be much smaller than I need, but any help for finding smaller pots than Alpha Taiwan would be much appreciated I'm trying to fit pots 16mm (.63in) apart.


Mine are mostly Clarostat 388-N, 100k


I bought a lot of them for about $40 some years ago. When I can I just buy lots of nice pots. Best fit are probably round Allen Bradley and Bourns 1/8" types




I don't know why people don't use these for Euro, they are small enough to cram pots as close as you could possibly want. Also they are durable and feel great.
Tronketz
Ok, redo. Added room for labels and doubled HP (from 20mm to 40.30mm as per Doepfer standard). This is for my David Dixon Dual VCA.

In Attn
CV Attn
Bias
Lin-Log
In, CV
Out +, Out -
Tronketz
oops, more replies, didn't see that... ok I need 10mm clearance...
Tronketz
Alright, here's a layout with 9mm pots. I think 12mm pots would fit but I couldn't find any measurements to confirm it. Not having a physical copy it'd be impossible for me to know total length, including the pins, of 12mm so for now I designed the panel with 9mm pots in mind.
gwaidan
I suggest you read this for pot dimensions:

12mm alpha type (others should be same)

http://www.taiwanalpha.com/english/p_e_46.htm

16mm alpha type (others should be same)

http://www.taiwanalpha.com/english/p_e_49.htm
Tronketz
According to the spec sheet, 17 diameter + 13.5 from half-diameter to end of pins means the total lenght of of a 16mm pot is 30.5mm which is ridiculous. If I measure the physical part I get no more than 23mm which almost fit in the above panel.

Same ridiculousness occurs with the 12mm pot measurements. 13 + 11.9 = 24.9 which also doesn't fit. But I think it will fit. I'll be buying 12mm pots and appropriate jacks and measure them before I create my final panel.

Thank you, gwaidan!
negativspace
Your equation is off - it's (17*0.5)+13.5, or 22mm - which is correct. No matter, that's what you measured so that's the number you're working with anyway. hihi

The 12mm pots would then be more like ~19mm, meaning they'll fit. I have some on hand and can confirm that they fit on that panel. thumbs up
Tronketz
very frustrating oops... d'oh!
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