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Old 07-16-2013, 08:15 PM   #1
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Think this would be strong enough to hold lead acid batteries?


I want to build a battery bank for my server room, and this is the design I came up with, there are no dimensions as it will be built to fit the area I have between the rack and the wall once the wall is built, and the hvac is passed next to it.



General idea is it will be maybe 2 feet wide, 4 feet deep, and about 7 feet tall.

The white members are 2x4's, red ones are also 2x4's that will be bolted into the whites, possibly 2 bolts per end, as the bolts will be bearing the full load of the batteries, so this will be heavy duty bolts. The yellow, I'm thinking of just laying some 2x6's flat. Everything but bolts will be predrilled then nailed, or would screws be better? I may also double up the 2x4 posts by adding small lengths of 2x4 between each of the reds. Each shelf will hold 4 100AH deep cycle marine batteries (basically same size/weight as car battery). Only have 4 batteries at this point but I want to be able to add more. May even possibly fit more than 4 per shelf in the future, but going for 4 right now as that's about all I will be able to fit.

Think this construction will be strong enough? This is not something I want to mess with and just guess. The sides will most likely have plywood nailed in to enclose it, and I may need to add some cross braces at the bottom shelf. It will also be bolted into the concrete.

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Old 07-16-2013, 08:51 PM   #2
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Think this would be strong enough to hold lead acid batteries?


It would be strong enough.....but....not the way I would do it....

I would make a 'shelf'....that would sit on a chunk of 2x4 just tall enough to hold the next 'shelf' above it.

In other words....make the shelf out of 3/4" plywood....screw the 2x4's to the corners from the bottom...and stack them. That will do away with about 2/3's of the hardware....and make it stronger.

To keep the sections together...maybe a simple simpson strap...

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Old 07-16-2013, 08:55 PM   #3
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Think this would be strong enough to hold lead acid batteries?


Will your floor support the weight of 10 (15?) batteries in that small an area? Have you sufficient ventilation for the hydrogen gas produced by the batteries? Fire suppression? Acid spill containment?
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Old 07-16-2013, 09:00 PM   #4
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Think this would be strong enough to hold lead acid batteries?


Should use steel for the rack. A lot sturdier and does not disintegrate when acid is spilled over it for a long period of time, like wood, when the steel is painted.

Our rack for our batteries for the Gyroscope, was basically three units of three shelves high, with one battery across, but had enough depth for two per shelf. Made out of Cold Rolled Angle Iron.
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Old 07-16-2013, 09:02 PM   #5
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Think this would be strong enough to hold lead acid batteries?


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Originally Posted by chitownken View Post
Will your floor support the weight of 10 (15?) batteries in that small an area? Have you sufficient ventilation for the hydrogen gas produced by the batteries? Fire suppression? Acid spill containment?
Going to be in the basement and bolted into the concrete, and yeah I have the hydrogen situation figured out. Hydrogen sensor + some hvac to circulate the air. The hydrogen generation of float voltage is very small and will dissipate quickly. I already have 2 on a charger with no active ventilation.

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It would be strong enough.....but....not the way I would do it....

I would make a 'shelf'....that would sit on a chunk of 2x4 just tall enough to hold the next 'shelf' above it.

In other words....make the shelf out of 3/4" plywood....screw the 2x4's to the corners from the bottom...and stack them. That will do away with about 2/3's of the hardware....and make it stronger.

To keep the sections together...maybe a simple simpson strap...

I was also thinking of using 3/4 plywood for the top part of the shelves, so would that be strong enough, instead of the 2x6's? I'm not too sure what you mean about the shelf, like have it sit on top of 6x 2x4's then nail it in, then put the next shelf on top and use some brackets to hold it? Wont that be kinda flimsy compared to having the continuous 2x4s?
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Old 07-16-2013, 09:03 PM   #6
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Think this would be strong enough to hold lead acid batteries?


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Will your floor support the weight of 10 (15?) batteries in that small an area? Have you sufficient ventilation for the hydrogen gas produced by the batteries? Fire suppression? Acid spill containment?
Most floors will. As for acid spill, most homeowners like myself would just throw down some kitty litter or sawdust to soak it up, then dispose in the trash. As for fire suppression, I would worry more about my next door neighbor having who knows what in their basement or garage, then a bank of batteries.

Our server room does not have fire suppression for the two banks of UPS battery units, just a heat detector in case of fire, and I doubt that even works, since the panel in the front of the building is disabled.

By your assessment chitownken, all of us with multiple UPS systems throughout our homes are violating some kind of NFPA or local rule now.
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Old 07-16-2013, 09:03 PM   #7
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Think this would be strong enough to hold lead acid batteries?


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Should use steel for the rack. A lot sturdier and does not disintegrate when acid is spilled over it for a long period of time, like wood, when the steel is painted.

Our rack for our batteries for the Gyroscope, was basically three units of three shelves high, with one battery across, but had enough depth for two per shelf. Made out of Cold Rolled Angle Iron.
Yeah that would be ideal but I don't have any tools to work with steel or experience with working with steel. The wood will be painted, and I will probably sit the batteries in some kind of low profile plastic containers. Will have some sensors and such in case acid ever leaks, ex: battery cracks.
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Old 07-16-2013, 09:06 PM   #8
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Think this would be strong enough to hold lead acid batteries?


Find a local welding shop, or get the MIG welder like the 90 amp that Harbor Freight has on sell right now. It would have no problem welding 18ga Angle Iron. Just have to change the blade on your chop saw, to cut through it.

You can actually find the network capable units that you can wire in the sensors, to let you know via sms or email, that would be a better step to not only keep an eye on the air circ sensor, but any high levels of off gassing.
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Old 07-16-2013, 09:17 PM   #9
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Think this would be strong enough to hold lead acid batteries?


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By your assessment chitownken, all of us with multiple UPS systems throughout our homes are violating some kind of NFPA or local rule now.
Nah, just used to working in big data centers where that stuff matters. Have seen the mess when things go wrong in the battery room and would not want that in my basement without some precautions haven been taken. Hydrogen concern is on recharge after power outage, but you say you have it handled. Think steel is a better way to go than wood.
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Old 07-16-2013, 09:22 PM   #10
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Think this would be strong enough to hold lead acid batteries?


So just curious, why are you building a server room? Going to start web hosting out of your basement? Development work?
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Old 07-16-2013, 09:34 PM   #11
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Think this would be strong enough to hold lead acid batteries?


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So just curious, why are you building a server room? Going to start web hosting out of your basement? Development work?
The OP is not building a server room, they are building a UPS battery backup system for their residence, so that when they have short blackouts/power loss, they have a way to save on running the genset, or having a fall over until the genset takes over.
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Old 07-16-2013, 09:37 PM   #12
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Think this would be strong enough to hold lead acid batteries?


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Originally Posted by gregzoll
The OP is not building a server room, they are building a UPS battery backup system for their residence, so that when they have short blackouts/power loss, they have a way to save on running the genset, or having a fall over until the genset takes over.
Um, reread post #1.
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Old 07-16-2013, 09:38 PM   #13
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Think this would be strong enough to hold lead acid batteries?


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Nah, just used to working in big data centers where that stuff matters. Have seen the mess when things go wrong in the battery room and would not want that in my basement without some precautions haven been taken. Hydrogen concern is on recharge after power outage, but you say you have it handled. Think steel is a better way to go than wood.
I can top that. I have worked around a room that is as large as my home 25x32, that was full of batteries for equipment, that constantly were on charge, or we would lift and hoist out of spaces, or have to rack into a space for shipboard com equipment.

Seen my fair share of batteries getting shorted across terminals, and a couple of acid spills. All we did, was throw down some OilSorb, then go back and clean it up after it absorbed as much of the spill, and everything was fine.

We had enough battery power onboard our ship, that you could power a hundred home neighborhood for a week, without having to recharge.
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Old 07-16-2013, 09:39 PM   #14
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Think this would be strong enough to hold lead acid batteries?


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Um, reread post #1.
Um, may want to go back in the Squirrel's previous posts, because this is for more than just his computers, it is also for his home backup. Need to follow these more, than just one post.
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Old 07-16-2013, 09:46 PM   #15
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Think this would be strong enough to hold lead acid batteries?


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Um, may want to go back in the Squirrel's previous posts, because this is for more than just his computers, it is also for his home backup. Need to follow these more, than just one post.
You can infer all you want. The first sentence states his intent.

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