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Andrew_K 16th Jan 2013 20:57

[MNPCTech] Project: Rebel Alliance CMII
Hello everybody!

As some of you may know, I have been working closely with Bill Owen at MNPCTech over the past year learning and soaking up as much as I can as his intern. We have done several case reviews and mod guides together, and it is time for me to step it up a notch and take on a big themed build.

- Theme -

This is going to be influenced by oldschool Star Wars, and specifically Rebel Alliance equipment. I love the look of their gear, machinery, technology, and spacecraft, so this will take many ideas from that. We're starting with the Cosmos II, and will end up with something that looks dramatically different in the end.

I first must thank CoolerMaster for the sponsorship of the Cosmos II and Silent Pro Hybrid 1300w powersupply, EK for sponsoring the watercooling components, Lutro0 for sponsoring their beautiful sleeving work, Mayhems for supplying their world class coolants and dyes, Cheapskate for dedicating his time into designing custom waterblocks for the 680s, Brian Garrity for his time as the camera man for the upcoming video of this project, and of course Bill and MNPCTech for everything he has taught me and given me during my time working with him.

- Components -

Asus Rampage IV Extreme
Intel 3930k
Quad SLI GTX 680 Classified's
32gb of Corsair Dominator 2133mhz
CoolerMaster Silent Pro Hybrid 1300w
512gb Vertex 4 SSD
3x 3tb Seagate 7,200rpm storage drives
Cosmos II
Full dual loop EK watercooling setup with custom GPU waterblocks designed by our very own Cheapskate
  • Supremacy Elite socket 2011 Nickel CPU block
  • R4E Nickel CSQ mobo block
  • 2x Ram Dominator X4 blocks
  • 2x 480 XT radiators
  • 2x DDC-3.2TP pumps
  • 2x X3 150mm res
  • Black Nickel fittings
  • Custom Classified blocks by munkeybutt
Time for the pics to do the talking!
The Cosmos II
It's a bird. It's a plane...
Cosmos II opened up - I hate that mess of useless crap dangling there.
The build will feature MNPCTech's new Cosmos II Full Acrylic window side panel! Available soon for order. This is a serious chunk of acrylic!
A few components going into the system
Classified unboxing
These cards are bigger than 690's...
Why is quad sli not overkill? 6000x1080-across-three-monitors-gaming is why. Even the Rebel Alliance has to game from time to time!
Stripping down the CMII for some modding.
Taping off the top to cut room for a 480mm rad.
Lining up the top rad
Cages removed to make room for a 480mm rad in the front
Creating the mounting system for the 480 in the front bezel
Rad mounted into front bezel. I will be doing more in between the rad and the edges to make it more connected.
Front rad mounted in the case
I wanted to do something special with the edge frame work, so I decided on cutting out slots and putting some modders mesh behind it
Clamping down the mesh for some epoxying
This stuff is the best for all kinds of modding. Epoxy of the gods I say!
Removing the stock top panel mesh
Mounting a hinge on the top panel for some flap movement
Watercooling time! Supremacy 2011 block and black nickel fittings
I love the frosty tops on these blocks!
DDC's and tops
An army of black nickel fittings! So prettttttty!
Measuring out pieces to make dual res holder from 1/4" thick Black Opaque acrylic sheet
Custom Dual Res tube holder for the EK Res X3s
EK Res X3s, ready for mounting
What remains of the factory front I/O, this was part of the CM II's top panel. This will flip open.
Modified "Laurey" style cabinet hinge, this spring loaded, and found at WoodCraft, http://www.woodcraft....ount-Pair.aspx
Spacer for hinge made from 1/8" acrylic, this will be painted later
Dual EK Res X3s mounted. This location will be ideal when it's time to fill the two loops.
The flip cover, creates easy access for inspecting the loops, if ever needed in the future.
The rear cover flips open now too!
I wanted to use an ipod touch for monitoring and fan control. This will be mounted in the front top panel and running through the Bitfenix Recon phone app.
Making the front phone mount
Initial looks of the front phone fan control module. Think Luke Skywalker's targeting computer ;)/>
Custom shroud for the reservoirs

I'm very dedicated to making this a very clean build internally, which is why shrouding everything is a must. I also want to keep the interior of the case very open and uncluttered, so there will be next to nothing inside the main compartment other than the mobo and what's attached to it. No drives, pumps, anything located here. It's all about the aesthetics!
Cutting 1/4" thick cast acrylic to use as a shroud for the lower portion of the chassis
1/4" acrylic over lower portion which will be easily removable with thumbscrews, 1/8" acrylic shroud on back wall will hide liquid tubing
The mid section has 1/2" thick acrylic floor so it's flush with the outter edge of the chassis
Using weld-on to attach lip to the tubing shroud for the back wall of the chassis, this will be painted later to match the exterior of the case.
Temporarily installing Mnpctech's CM II clear panel to determine the two 120mm fan hole openings in the removable lower chassis shroud
The two 120mm fan hole openings are aligned with opening in the clear panel
The epoxy on the side bezels has dried and I really like how they look with the mesh
Now it's time to do the same thing with the non-window'ed side panel. Cutting the double layered panel was a bit of a challenge, but it's cleaned up and time for more epoxy. I plan to mount an acrylic Rebel Alliance logo on the mesh and illuminate it.

As far as the custom classified waterblocks are concerned, Cheapskate has made great progress (though he has reminded me how complex these little buggers are going to be ;) This is current design phase with an "X Wing" style backplate that will have the Rebel Alliance logo in the red circle. The layers in the pic are backplate, full copper block, acrylic top, and stainless top cover.

More to come soon! We'll have a video worklog as well, so make sure you subscribe to MNPCTech's Youtube Channel!

Cheapskate 17th Jan 2013 02:29

:duh: Ah, crap. Now I'm committed to it.:lol:

siliconfanatic 17th Jan 2013 04:17

*drools* bill intern, cheapskate spnsorship..... the servers gonnah fry well before this gets any more awesome...

dreps 17th Jan 2013 07:53

is there any time that you guys don't do awesome? :p

matiss 17th Jan 2013 08:58


Originally Posted by Cheapskate (Post 3266515)
:duh: Ah, crap. Now I'm committed to it.:lol:

youre always in it someway, were used to it :D

:thumb: to the build im seeing some starwars goodness coming at us, will it do the kessel run? :hehe:

Marquee 17th Jan 2013 14:54

If you where to stop now it will still win mod of the month. LOL
MNPCTECH taking it to the next level. Love it

XNine 17th Jan 2013 15:38

It's good to see that the prodigal son of Bill Owen expanding into the craft. Bill is like the Chip Foose of PC mods, and seeing his apprentice take on the role is very exciting!

sixfootsideburns 17th Jan 2013 17:50


Originally Posted by XNine (Post 3266955)
It's good to see that the prodigal son of Bill Owen expanding into the craft. Bill is like the Chip Foose of PC mods, and seeing his apprentice take on the role is very exciting!

and also potentially life consuming for the rest of us... how am I suppose to get any work done if all I can think about all day is updates?!?!

Vetalar 17th Jan 2013 18:10

i don't get it... are that master and apprentice on light or dark side?

for the build - some _real_ firepower in here!!!

Cheapskate 17th Jan 2013 18:26

@Silicon - Not sponsorship. He used his connections with Bill to sucker me into doing something I've never even thought to try.
The birthing for the blocks will be slow and painful...:worried:

Bladesingerz 17th Jan 2013 18:41

Very nice start Sir! Looking forward to the next updates!

siliconfanatic 17th Jan 2013 19:17


Originally Posted by Cheapskate (Post 3267088)
@Silicon - Not sponsorship. He used his connections with Bill to sucker me into doing something I've never even thought to try.

may as well be. dat $hite you spit out is worth MUUCHO GRANDE:D


Originally Posted by Cheapskate (Post 3267088)
The birthing for the blocks will be slow and painful...:worried:

sorry.. used up all the morphine for the athlete's foot. Would you rather have a c-section, ma'am? :p

Andrew_K 17th Jan 2013 21:25

Ello chaps! I really appreciate all the feedback. It's nice to finally be on forums where the worklog section isn't completely dead or consumed by a million posts of people that painted their case and called it a mod.

And yes, Bill managed to assist in get Cheaps involved. I think he's having a (insert adjective here) time working on them :) I was thinking about having some guy in germany do custom blocks (he has nice looking stuff), but I didn't particularly trust sending a classified over to him... I know I'd steal one of these given the chance :P

Anywho, time for more updates!
Taping off a section of the side panel to cut an opening that will be backed with mesh and a Rebel Alliance logo
Mmmmmm hot plastic spray
Cleaning up the back side of the opening - not an easy task with the over engineered cosmos II side panels
The triple layer madness has been dominated.
Time to clean up the cut with a hand file
The side panels just feel really bland from the factory, so a few more additions will help to add some character to the Starwars tech feel
To mount two of the three 3.5" drives, I'll be using 1/8" cast acrylic for a mounting plate
The drives will be hidden behind the PSU and attached with thumb screws
The stock support was removed and a custom beam was created with 1" thick acrylic which the hard drive mounting plate attaches to
For the rear case fan, the stock grill was removed with a jigsaw and 18 TPI bi-metal cutting blade
I'll be using a combination of a custom one-off grill and Mnpctech 120mm Overkill ring. I have yet to decide on exactly what combination, as a few options look good.
Dropping in the EK waterblocks for a preliminary test fitting.
Spacing things out in the case. Subsequently Bill finds out I'm OCD about watercooling tubing and fittings :P/>
Getting up close and personal with the preliminary fitting
Everything is coming together nicely. The front will be covered by a huge 480mm machined grill and shrouding around the edges up to the fans. Materials TBD
Cable management will be super clean as we have created a custom acrylic plate that the mobo is mounting on, and this allows for slots to be cut behind the mobo instead of next to it avoiding a visual mess.

More coming soon! Thanks for watching.

Andrew_K 18th Jan 2013 01:48

Thanks for the feedback guys. I'm just waiting for my next update post with pics to be "approved" :)

Knighthammer 18th Jan 2013 18:49

Stay on target....
(sorry - had to throw a SW reference in)
Looks great - following thing one for sure!

p0Pe 18th Jan 2013 19:33

Is it me or does this look awfully unhealthy?

It looks like its angled :(

Otherwise it is looking good. I look forward to the custom waterblocks:)

Andrew_K 18th Jan 2013 19:50

Might be... still working out the kinks. Everything is at our painter's so hopefully I'll get it back shortly and will be able to start putting things together. Brad is mixing a custom House of Kolor metallic gray for the interior and exterior, and will be doing some airbrushing all over the case to add some taste.

Andrew_K 18th Jan 2013 20:43

Moar Moar Moar!

Making some serious progress on the internals now! In addition to the iphone control up front, I also wanted something to make the inside shrouding a bit more interesting... so I went with an Aquaero. This will be used for some fan control, flow senors, inline water temp readings, etc. I like their graphs.
A few of the LED strips I'll be using around the case to give a little glow.
I made a Rebel Alliance logo by hand which will likely be used on the side panel, and I may need to bust out a few more for placement among the build. A little time consuming, but worth it.
The interior is just about ready to head in for paint. The acrylic will all be painted the same color as the exterior (a metallic gray). The side shroud with fan holes is removable via thumb screws if I should ever need to access the lower compartment which will house the pumps.
Here you can see the placement of the Aquaero. The acrylic will be cut to fit it in perfectly and will be used for reading water temps, flow, and controlling some fans.
Holes are in place for tubing pass through to the quad GPU setup. The acrylic is flush with the case.
A sneaky view of the lower compartment that will house the PSU and pumps. The custom support brackets are made from 1" acrylic and also support the hidden hard drive mounting bracket behind the PSU.

flame696 18th Jan 2013 22:05

damn it you cant just leave it like this i need moar!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Andrew_K 18th Jan 2013 22:23

Tell me about it. The paint process needs to speed up!

Pick a color they said. Even though you're colorblind they said. :)

(going with far right, semi gloss. It has bigger metallic that is hard to see in the small pic)

Paint is a GO!

And Lutro0 is in the process of finishing the sleeving... looks nice!

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