View Full Version : Moving amps Install in plexyglass?

02-21-2010, 02:31 PM
I am in the process of moving my amps so i can place them all together and out of the way of gear. I am looking to have them all on the same plexyglass back board so i can limit the amount of screw holes into the boat.

My question is if plexyglass the right way to go or is there something else i should be using? I will have three amps installed on it.

02-21-2010, 03:10 PM
Plexi is great Mike, just make sure its 1/2 inch thick so it doesn't wobble with the weight on there. Plexi also can be painted, back side and you can have some cool looking stuff on it.

02-21-2010, 04:02 PM
Jester it all depends on what you use and how & where you plan on attaching it to. I used composite Alucobond which is less than 1/8" thick but extremely rigid but light. One thing to remember is that when you attach the amps to the board you automatically increase the rigidity of the amp board as the amps are now a structural member. Look at mine below, i attached to the floor reinforcing rib on bottom and the rubrail reinforcing block up top. This thing does not move at all yet keeps it out of the way. I do plan on making a guard of some sort to keep things off the amps so the airflow/cooling insn't affected.

02-21-2010, 06:01 PM
Jester - There are a lot of good choices on what to mount your amplifiers to but my feeling is, I'd skip the Plexi. Yes sure, Mike is right you can use it and it will work fine. If show quality is your primary goal, then I wont rain on that parade. You can paint it, edge light it etc... but its not so fun to drill and tap each hole when using plex. Its not fun when you crack it because your template is off a bit either.

I'd suggest looking at the HDPE boards that come in a variety of thicknesses (I think mike just bought one for his boat). I also like the PVC expanded foam product that is becoming more cost effective. Lastly, I've seen guys build great racks from metal by welding a skeleton together, then powdercoat it and then mount to it.

Lots of choices out there. Since your down in Eugene area, check out TAP plastics. I think they have a local branch down there.


Exile Audio

02-21-2010, 06:13 PM
Hey Razz can i trouble you to measure how fare your screw locations are from the bottom to the top? I know where the bottom edge rail is but im having a bit of a time being certain i have the upper rail to screw into. Both areas are an invh thick right? I was thinking screwing 1/2 inch into it to mount my racks.

02-22-2010, 04:27 PM
Hey Jester,

I'm in this same process as you. I uninstalled all the amps, radio, battery...etc last weekend from the boat. Last owner of the boat mounted amps on particle board, wires running every where, and he did not seal the board so it was a soggy stinky mess. I swear that boards weigh must have 100lbs with all the water in it.

I'm going to create new amp racks, install dual batteries with BlueSea add a battery kit, and I also bought a new head unit because the cheap one in the boat didn't allow for iPod/iPhone hook up. I think I'm going to try and install one battery on each side of the bow underneath the front cushions. Only 10 inches underneath the seats so I'm probably going to have to go with those Optima battery's since you can mount them in any position. They are so expensive though.

I searched homedepot, lowes, and couple of other hardware stores but didn't find any large sheets of plastic board. Someone mentioned using cheap cutting board from walmart but I didn't find anything that is big enough for my amps. Plexiglass would be cool but as someone else mentioned, it cracks easy when drilling so I'm not going that route.

I think I'm going to just by some 1/2 plywood and seal it with some roll-on truck bed coating/liner like Rust-Oleum from Walmart for $43 buck a gallon. Nothing fancy since I'm just going to cover it up with carpet. I found a Local carpet shop and they sell marine carpet 3x72 for $50 bucks. Looks like I should be able to do this for under $150 bucks. I'll start my own thread once I get started this Friday.

So many great ideas from people on this forum. Thanks to every one who has posted pictures and/or made suggestions in all the different threads !!!

02-22-2010, 05:43 PM
What about using aluminum Diamond plate? It is light and can work as an additional heat sink for the amps.

02-22-2010, 06:11 PM
Also working similar project...I was looking at this stuff.... I was looking at 24x36 sheet which is $54, 1/2' thick. With shipping seems as though it would come in close to what you were considering...then cover this with carpet.



02-22-2010, 06:18 PM
So I was cruising Walmart after looking for roll-on truck liner goo to coat plywood and found these 12x24 metal peg boards for $9 bucks each in the automotive section. I'm thinking I might walk homedepot, Lowes, and Sears tonight with this in mind tonight...but man, 3 of these small 12x24 metal peg boards with some carpet will probably do the trick. Plus, I can arrange them in any direction. No wood, sturdy solid metal frame, and no problems drilling....I think I found my solution. These are 24 inches long so that should leave just enough room for some wire management I believe. I need to measure the amps again tonight.

In this scenario I'd probably Gorilla Glue some small pretreated 2x2 wood blocks to the hull, glue the carpet on to the metal peg board, mount the amps, and then mount this peg board to the new 2x2 wood blocks on the hull. I'll probably need to drill a few of the peg board holes bigger for the amp wires. 3 of these for a total of $24, + glue, $50 for carpet, so I should be in under $100 without any wood! Sweet!

Hutch!! That was an awesome URL find for the cutting board though, that place definitely has the best prices I've seen on the net so far.

02-23-2010, 01:14 PM
Thank you everyone for the posts. I am staying away from anything that is metal just in case a hot wire comes out.

Brian, Thank you for the company in my area. I will have to check them out.

Razz, I was looking for your post but could not find it and did not know who did this before. I thought it was you but could not find your install. How did you secure the board to the side of the boat? What size of screw did you use and how deep did you go into the side of the boat?

02-23-2010, 01:56 PM
Jester I used the rubrail backing at the top to secure to and the floor reinforcing rib at the bottom. I actually got the idea from Newty. I used #1/2-10 sheet metal as screws if I remember correctly. I also used a bit limiter on the floor rib so I wouldn't drill too deep.

ian ashton
02-27-2010, 11:17 AM
I definately wouldn't use metal either - aside from the risk of grounding out a stray power wire, you also will probably have some funky noise issues if you are running multiple amps.

A lot of people use cutting boards (like for cooking) as they are cheap, easy to find in all sorts of sizes and colors.

02-27-2010, 11:59 AM
check this out...


02-27-2010, 01:38 PM
Metal is fine, remember plenty of auto installs have been done on metal, it's not an issue as a metal rack wouldn't be chassis grounded anyway. There have been plenty of boat installs done on custom metal racks. Mine are done on metal without issue and there's no risk of funny noises as they're digital and don't create noise or movement. If you did have a stray wire (which you shouldn't) then it would just pop a fuse, that's what they're for.