ok i am carrying my worklog over to multiple forums so i can get feedback from all angles while i do my build. this will catch everyone up to where i am now.
Be warned from the onset that this is gonna be a looooonnnnngggggg build.
Also the quality of some of the pics wont be brilliant but all I have to work with atm is snapping shots between a tempermental vivitar 3mp camera that eats effin batteries like candy or my N95 with the 5mp cam on it. I will do the best I can with pics and try to give you as much detail as I can. also being in England atm i dont have a dedicated mod area, i am betting this is the main reason i get the evil eye from wifey when i talk about working on it lol. The project tends to follow me into whatever room i decide to sit in to mod that day, kitchen, sitting room, back garden, hell even wet sanding in the bathtub isn't off limits.
Technically I am building 2 PC's, one for me and one for the other half. internals will be identical but she doesn't have allot of care for the exterior modding aside from paint.
so mine gets the surgery to make it the way I want..hers just gets some lipstick and a new pair of shoes.
Knowing from the beginning that the budget will be a limiting factor since all the components will be bought in pairs ( if they aren't identical spec hdwe wise wifey says I can sleep in the back shed for a while till I come up with a good excuse for the deviation =oX)
we start out with a budget case bought from our friends over at scan, a Sharkoon Rebel 9 economy edition
this will serve as a good canvas for me and sufficient room for the hardware we are considering.
My goals for this build are as follows:
increase ventilation through the case
add a side window
add internal lighting
try my hand at wire management
pull out the airbrush after 17 years and see if the hands still work
lastly, come up with matching systems that will last us four or five years.
While I know I am no where near as good as some of you in sketch up, I did try my hand in it to see what I could come up with.
Here's the basic results:
these depictions give me a good idea of how I want my layout to be. Mind you the color scheme isn't picked yet aside from my determination to use blue in it lol.
Placement of the lower intake and upper blow hole should give me the airflow I am looking for.
When coupled with the turbine intake on the front panel and the dual 80mm exhaust at the rear I think there should be plenty of air moving through the case.
First things first...
off comes the front panel
followed by the front usb io panel
then the power and reset buttons
leaving me with a bare front panel to play with
Now onto the fun bits:
i hit Wickes(for those in the states Wickes is like Valu home center..smaller more personal version of home depot) and picked up some cheap clear plexi
I know this isnt top of the line mod material but its cheap and cheerful and foots the bill for what i need to do with it.
off i went to grab my trusty razor knife...scored a strip of plexi and placed it over the edge of the coffee table ( makes note..wife really doesn't appreciate me modding in the sitting room) after a bit of downward pressure *POP* the piece snapped clean off scaring the crap out of the 2 dogs in the process.
this piece will be the filler for the bottom portion of the front panel.
i started out using araldite(5 min epoxy) to hold it in,
once the epoxy set i got paranoid and followed up with super glue down the joint as well simply because i didn't wanna get halfway through makin this front panel and have the seam go pop and have to start over.
once the new insert was affixed to the front panel i had a bit of a rummage around the local Sunday market and found a cheap hole saw set (more on its quality later)
i chucked up the largest diameter hole saw in the drill and marked everything up.
i would love to tell ya that i took 10 different measurements, made sure all were spot on, crossed them all with Einsteins theory of relativity and then only after putting on all appropriate safety gear including gloves goggles and steel toed boots, started drilling.
i'd be a lyin **** if i did, truth be told i set the front panel in place back on the chassis. marked out where the center of the stock 120mm fan cage sat and freehand marked the center point for it (Gasp).
then i grabbed my custom specially made turbine intake port unit ( shhhh i know its just a Cd sleeve but its all fun =o)~)
marking the ring to cut off the end was kinda easy..lay a sharpie marker in the table and spin the cd sleeve against it for the straight line.
end was removed with trusty dremel tool and cutting disc.
checking the diameter against a 120mm fan
looks close enough for me. the sleeve is a bit wider than necessary but i will make small filler panels on the fan housing itself so it wont be noticeable.
i then reversed the placement of the mounting panel in the chassis to give it a bit more depth and set the front cover back on the chassis with the cd sleeve through the hole so i could mark where to cut it.
i know i will prolly get beaten severely for not having a pic of that process but to be honest, when yer on a roll its hard to remember to snap pics of every step you take.
once i had everything sitting flush, i marked the intake with a fineline marker again and cut it with the trusty dremel again.
i sanded the interior and exterior of the cd sleeve to give the adhesives something to "bite" onto. i figured that had to be better than leaving them ultra smooth so things pop off later.
i set the cd sleeve into the front panel and grabbed the araldite again
cant ever say i waste things... what was a scrap cd sleeve top is now a pallet for mixing epoxy, hehe
this one i epoxied from top and bottom. the followed up with a fine bead of super glue as well to make sure it never comes off.
wow from this angle the tube looks alot longer than it actually is..
a quick hop to Halfords brought me back with this
eh it suits a purpose for now. i know the front panel was never meant to be a "one fill then done" project so i popped open the can, grabbed a mixing pallet ( technical name for a few paper plates )
and promptly got kicked out of the house into the back garden =0/
apparently the wife doesnt share the same affinity as i do for the smell of body filler.
undeterred i went ahead and layed on the first coat.
Note to self:Use masking tape to keep body filler out of areas you dont want filled moron!!
now i got to do the fun and wonderful job of sanding the first coat down so i am close to where i wanna be.