Use a rack and plywood for cable management in the TC

For some installations, budget constraints force end-users to place only a rack for cable management in the telecommunications closet (TC), which can become quite messy as a result. A cabinet or an enclosure would be a higher-priced cable-management option than a rack.

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Scott English, Data Structures Inc.

Problem

For some installations, budget constraints force end-users to place only a rack for cable management in the telecommunications closet (TC), which can become quite messy as a result. A cabinet or an enclosure would be a higher-priced cable-management option than a rack.

Solution

Install the rack perpendicular to a 4 x 8-foot sheet of plywood and route the cables from the ceiling to the rack via the plywood.

Procedure

1) In the TC, install the rack perpendicular to a 4 x 8-foot sheet of 3/4-inch-thick, fire-retardant plywood. Install the rack near the edge of the plywood that is farthest away from the point at which the cables enter the TC through the ceiling.

2) From the ceiling, mount cable bundles onto the plywood in groups of 12 or 24, depending on the size of the patch panel.

3) Dress and terminate the cables onto the patch panels, starting at the top and working right to left.

4) Attach the cables to the plywood using cable-tie mounts and cable ties.

Scott English is president of Data Structures Inc. (Louisville, CO). This tip was submitted for the Cabling Installer Tips Contest at Cabling Installation Expo `97, held last October in Charlotte, NC.

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This aerial view shows that the rack should be installed perpendicular to the plywood, at the edge of the plywood farthest away from the point at which the cables enter the TC through the ceiling.

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Once brought through the ceiling, the cables can be dressed and terminated onto the patch panels.

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