Seeking advice on ergonomics of a practice rack

Hi!

I am looking for ideas on how to set up a moveable rack with minimal equipment for home practice and recording using a couple of guitars and a bass.

Previously, I've asked and received advice on the equipment in this thread. All the equipment is listed there in the top post, and I duplicate it below.

I realized that a small footprint and the equipment being easily moveable is very important in my house. So, I'm planning to put everything in a portable rack on casters, which would have only a single power plug. Everything else should be on the rack. Instruments will plug into effects and the mixer on the rack. The pa speaker must be on the rack.

My equipment consists of

an Allen& Heath ZEDi 10FX mixer,
two multipedals,
one flamma fs06 preamp pedal,
one fuzz mini pedal,
A macgyvered PA speaker made of an old subwoofer and a cheap frontman 10 guitar amp

For recording, I plan to occasionally use a laptop, with the mixer as interface (it can do four tracks). For practice, we don't use computer.

So, two questions:

1. How to organize it all? I would like to have it all in one rolling rack, including the speaker. Preferably with a place for the laptop too. I'm looking at something like this rack. But I am wide open for suggestions.

2. I figured I should eventually get a real PA speaker. The contraption I have sort of works but it is awkward to hook up, takes a lot of room, and I feel like the sound could be better. Would something like this be noticeably better for bass+strat+occasional vocals or should I only expect improvement in the $400 range with something like dbr10? Or am I looking in the wrong direction, and all this is a huge overkill? After all, the main goal is still play at home quietly.
 

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My goals are to have all equipment and the speaker on the easily moveable stand, which only needs a single power plug.

  1. It would be easy to roll aside for house cleaning
  2. All wires and cables would be organized within the stand, nothing is on the floor or sticking out too much.
  3. The pedal board is either built-in (is it possible or practical?) or easily removable and stowable into the stand at the end of a practice session, preferably without the need to disconnect/reconnect every time.
Does anyone has experience with something like this?
 
None of the stuff you are using there appears to be designed to be rack-mounted, in a standard 19" rack format.

So I'd suggest you want some kind of custom trolley with suitable shelf / shelves to accomodate your stuff at the appropriate hegiht. If you're making it yourself, use a set of 3" or 4" flight case castors rather than those tiny furniture-style ones. They roll better. You'd probably want one (or two) of those castors to be braked as well: wheels are great, but you don't want stuff moving when you've got it into position.

I'd also suggest you dont make it too bespoke for the kit you're using now. Your kit will change over time as your requirements for it evolve. (Let's just say I've watched the discussion previously on your chosen speaker system....)

19" racked stuff has the kit fixed to it securely; moving it is therefore relatively safe for the kit and fixed connections. If you wanted that same security, you want to work out how to fix the bits to your trolley / rack. Lighter stuff can be held in place with velcro tape, such as that used for guitar pedalboards. Not as good as rack mounting, but it will be sufficient if you are not chucking your rack about, onto trucks, etc.

Depending on how portable you want the thing to be, be sure to consider the overall weight of it. Racks and stairs are no fun,\

Cheers, and regaeds,

Ant
 
The reason pedalboards go on the floor is that the artist needs to actuate them during the performance while facing the audience. If you don't perform live or it's a pedal that stays on a single setting all the time it can literally be placed wherever you like.

If it were my project, I would buy a pack or two of Ikea Gorm shelves, a 2x3, and bottle of carpenter's glue and build something fit for purpose. If you Google Ikea pedalboard you will come across more ideas that you can imagine. My own preference is to disassemble the Gorm shelves, cut them to the size I want, and glue them back together. Stack as many as you want, straight, staggered, irregular spacing, it's all open for design.
 
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@leadbelly thanks for the info. I get why the pedalboards go on the floor. As you can see, I struggle with convenience of use vs convenience of handling/storing at home.

I wonder if there is some middle ground: if I only need to switch something once in a while, perhaps there is a design somebody saw or used that would work when the pedalboard is a part of the rack? If not, perhaps thre is a good design how one could have the pedalboard be easily storable in the rack.

Perhaps just having a shelf for the pedalboard, and put it there after use is the best one can hope for.
 
Well if having the pedalboard store in the rack and be able to be pulled out easily is your last remaining problem, then it's easier.

IIRC I saw a custom rack a while back where a pedalboard just plopped down on hinges when a catch was released, but was normally stored vertically on the front side of the rack. You can get fancier and use slip hinges so it can pull away completely from the rack. That's if you are willing to DIY. If your pedalboard is less than 18" wide you can use stock rack and shelves and just pull the pedalboard out each time.

If you want it convenient and quick you need to use a snake for the interconnects. This could be as simple as just taping or coil binding your interconnects together so they coil without tangling, or you could get fancy and make patch bays and custom snakes.