Understand Cubicle Panel Sharing

Understanding panel sharing and how it relates to cost.

Office cubicles are typically purchased in “packs”.  These packs can be set-up as 6-packs, 8-packs (like the image below), 10-packs and so on.  Packs have been referred to as “Ice Cube Trays” because your typical ice-cube tray holder is usually set up as a 12-pack or 14-pack.

The 8-pack below is sharing the center run or “center spine” of panels, these panels are highlighted in red.  In this example there are 8 total powered panels that are supporting 8 stations.


The Cubicles below are set-up in (2) groups of 4-in-a-row.  This configuration is usually needed when your traditional 8-pack (like above) will not fit in the center of the room.  These (2) runs of 4 cubicles would typically be set up against walls.  This configuration requires 16 power panels (highlighted below in red) to build 8 stations.  Double the panels in our previous example.

(2) 4-in-a-row

The DIFFERENCES between an 8-pack and (2) 4-in-a-row related to Cost

  1. Number of panels:  8 panels to build an 8-pack versus 16 panels to build (2) runs of 4-in-a-row.
  2. You need double the duplex receptacles (see image below of a “line b” duplex receptacle that has a cord plugged into it)
  3. You need double power base-in feeds.  The base-in feed is a “garden hose” size electrical feed that connects the building power to the cubicles.
  4. You need more panel connectors (with more panels, more connectors are needed)
  5. You need more hardware and panel trim pieces.

cubicle receptacle in panel

Why can’t I buy 8 cubicles (At standard pricing) that are set-up in (2) groups of 4-in-a-row?

Used furniture dealerships/brokers buy cubicles from companies that were originally set-up in a particular configuration.

If UsedCubicles.com buys 16 stations set-up in (2) 8-packs (figure #1) and a potential customer needs 8 cubicles set-up in (2) runs of 4.  I would need to provide that customer with 16 power panels.  ALL the powered panels that we have in that specific 16 station inventory.  This would mean we would only be able to sell 8 stations because the remaining 8 stations would not have powered panels for the next customer.  In this example, the cost for 8 cubicles would be equal to the cost of 16 cubicles, or double.

need panels from 16 stations to build 8

Sometimes we purchase cubicle inventories that have lots of extra panels, the original set-up may have been lots of runs instead of packs.  In these cases, your cost can stay at the standard rate because we will be able to sell all the cubicles in the inventory.

Last and most important

Sometimes furniture designers do not take into consideration panel sharing.  When space design and traffic flow is more important than cost, this is common.  Here are things to consider.

  1. Wing panels are not always needed.  Does the worker need visual privacy?
  2. You can have different departments in your space without making separate groups of cubicles that require more panels
  3. Do not put panels that do not support worksurfaces along drywall
  4. You don’t have to power every panel, only the ones that need a receptacle
  5. Sometimes you can access the power off drywall, why power panels along a wall when there is power in the drywall already?
  6. more…

Have more questions?  Want FREE design to see if we can apply some of the before mentioned items?

Send us the measurements of your space, your hand drawing or the drawing another designer completed and let us value engineer it!

Jeff@usedcubicles.com  440-967-7718

Karen@usedcubicles.com  440-683-4385