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Old 29th Dec 2016, 20:47   #1
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Parts Availability, Or Lack Thereof...

It's been a while since I built a new liquid cooled system, maybe even a couple of years. With the advent of AIO coolers, most client builds which needed an overclock have been fitted with one of those or simply a huge heatsink and fan. I've also noticed that the demand for new liquid cooled builds has dropped significantly, in my part of the world anyway.

So I haven't put together a new loop in a while and now two (possibly 2.5) have come along at once, all for myself this time. I'd forgotten how irritating and difficult a process it is to find the fittings, tubing, blocks and so on that you want here in the UK. I'm building two significantly sized loops; one is using 13/10mm PVC tubing cooling three GPUs, a CPU and full cover board, and the other is using 16/12mm PVC tubing to cool two GPUs and a CPU. I'm also adding one card to a small bore 10/8mm loop and replacing the old tubing.

So far I've had to order tubing, fittings and other components from five different sources and I've had to make compromises or redesign elements of the builds because I couldn't find the correct fittings in stock anywhere in Europe. EKWB are a great source of components, but I've had to place two orders with them because I realized after getting the first order through and test fitting components that I needed extra fittings to make tubing runs work. So another order left Slovenia on its way to the UK yesterday, and I have to wait another week for it to arrive.

Am I crazy for thinking there's something wrong when to get two new systems built and one upgraded and re-tubed, you're forced to order parts from EKWB, WCUK, 4 different sellers on eBay, OCUK and Amazon? And before anyone asks why I didn't order anything from Aquatuning, they simply didn't have any of what I was looking for or were too expensive! And I still haven't been able to find a pair of 1/4 threaded Alphacool quick release fittings for the re-tube job so that has been delayed even further.

Having looked at it briefly, I'm pretty sure that if I lived in the US, I could do all three systems in their entirety from FrozenCPU and Performance PCs, in two orders. The UK and Europe has some good suppliers, but what I've noticed is that they seem to run out of stock quite often or simply don't stock a full enough range of one manufacturer's fittings.
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Old 18th Jan 2017, 01:19   #2
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Just last night I was spec'ing up a build to see how much it would cost to upgrade the main components (Cpu, mobo, ram and gpu) as well as blocks for them and a few new fittings. Was such a pita trying to find who had what so it could be done in the fewest orders. It would also cost way more than I can or want to spend right now

Also, I know it's yet another separate order, but: https://www.alphacool.com/shop/fitti...se-connectors/
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Old 18th Jan 2017, 16:38   #3
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This was the same issue I had for the first several years I started doing watercooled builds in the late 2000's. My first few builds I had to go to Frozen, Performance, Sidewinders, Aquacomputer, and Aquatuning for various parts. FOUR of those vendors were JUST for fittings in the same color (Bitspower Black Sparkles). These days it's less of a hassle here, mainly because Performance is really dominating the watercooling arena now.

The only thing you can really do is try and find as much as possible in one location. Even if you spend a little more, it might be worth not being frustrated and waiting for restocks or shipping times from far away places. So, while I spent 10-20 bucks more at one spot, I actually paid less with shipping costs and in pulling what little hair I had left at the time, lol.
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