Discussion in 'Project Logs' started by Ragster, 9 Sep 2021.
Well, this is taking literally 10x longer than I thought it would! I have made some progress, although I have to admit I forgot to take pictures during some of it…
I used danish oil on the veneered “wings” and it turned out fantastically. Danish oil is soooo much easier to apply than stain. It’s so forgiving- you can just keep adding more on if you want. I’ll definitely be using it again on any future projects.
Here’s another pic with some holes drilled to mount the 360 radiators…
Next I made a front IO panel- unfortunately I didn’t take many pictures of the process but it just involved a lot of sanding and filing.
I have to say the square cut out looks straighter in real life. I never noticed it was a little wonky looking until I uploaded this pic. Might have to revisit this piece. Anyways, here it is after applying some oil:
Next I attached the spacers to the back of the wings- unfortunately I realized one of them covered the area for the front IO, so I cut out a piece of the one spacer for the wires to run:
Next I cut out the back panel that holds everything together and will be mounted to the wall. The areas I cut out are there to enable access the GPU and Motherboard IO. It’s hard to see it but the little indentation in the top of the back panel was cut out to match the wrist of the gold hand from earlier. I used the orange tool at the top of the pic to capture the curvature of the hand and transfer it to the plywood:
I’m going to cover the visible portions of the back panel with a strip of walnut plywood I had leftover from a desk project. Actually, it’s from the desk the computer will hang above so it will match the room perfectly. It’s actually starting to look like what I imagined at this point!
Ok… back to the hand. How am I going to secure a reservoir to a ceramic hand? It’s a pump-res combo so there’s going to be plenty of vibrations. I decided to use studs through the fingers to attach a platform. I purchased a dremel ceramic cutting bit and the thing was phenomenally good at punching holes. Just make sure to use some water to keep the dust down! This pic shows the first two holes but I made 4 in total.
The platform was made out of a piece of pine I cut at the correct angle, with 1/4” dowels attached to fit snugly into the holes. Now that I’m explaining this, I’m realizing it sounds easier than it was. Measuring where to punch the holes on the curvy surface of the fingers gave me a tough time. In any event, here’s the platform:
And here it is attached to the hand:
The friction of the dowels in the holes was probably enough to hold it, but I poured copious amounts of epoxy down the holes before inserting the platform/dowels to make sure this thing never comes apart…
I tried to get a good pic of the dowels to show how difficult they are to see (I painted them a matching gold too). All in all I’m super happy with how the hand/platform turned out.
OK- that’s enough for now.
I forgot about the hand.
Those veneered wings looks lovely. Coming along nicely!
Put on the 3080ti water block. Somehow managed to tear a ribbon cable on the stock air cooler… oops.
Cut out some additional holes to route wires from the motherboard. I wasn’t too concerned about how they look since they’ll be covered by the motherboard. I ran a round over bit over the edges of the cutouts to make it a little smoother.
Made some standoffs for the GPU backplate in the walnut plywood…
Put some oil on the plywood and transferred the wire cut outs…
Finally, I began to make the bulkhead structure that runs along the bottom and edges. They’re each a 1/4” piece of plywood laminated with two cut down pieces of 3/4”. I’m probably going to paint these matte black. I was originally going to use gold, but there’d just be way too much gold on this thing if I did that. I’ll probably use drywall putty to seal the end grain.
Well folks, I can actually see the finish line!
I cut the IO port for the back of the motherboard out of the bulkhead side pieces…
The whole thing fit together pretty well.
I cut the side pieces down, sealed the end grain with some drywall putty to get a smooth finish
And painted them black. I don’t know which attempt at painting them this pic is from, but I had a hard time getting the correct finish I wanted. Lots of priming, sanding, priming, sanding, painting, sanding, painting, sanding, painting
Once I had those taken care of, I set to work on a place to put the power supply. I hate cables, so I figured I’d try to hide it in the back. I cut out a square in the backplate and fit it inside the space between the back plate and the wing.
Did a bit of rough sanding to make enough clearance for the power cables:
And then made a bracket out of some scrap to hold it in there:
Here it is attached:
To hang this whole thing on the wall, I knew I needed a hinge system to be able to access the cables and motherboard IO in the back. I decided I’d use some heavy duty door hinges with bearings, and a couple of French cleats to help me center it before I lag it into the wall studs. Here I attached some spacers with an area for the hinges routed out:
I ripped the cleats from some 3/4” poplar. Yes, this thing is way heavier than it needs to be lol.
Here they are attached.
I added some stops on the opposite end of the hinges with some Velcro underneath to hold them in place.
Are those two runners are hard mounted to the wall, or hanging on the French cleats?
-Because I can see them tipping out of cleats if you open past 90 degrees.
I've fixed a lot of doors that were too heavy and ripped the top hinges free, too.
Oh noooooo don’t tell me that lol. The runners are cleated which I’ll use just to hang it initially and center it in the little nook it’s going in. Once it’s centered I’m going to lag bolt the runners into the studs. On the hinges, I know the sides of the hinge that are driven into the case itself will be fine- they’re each held in by five #10 3” screws. For the side attached to the runner, I used the five screws that came with the hinge. I believe they are 3/4” long #10s too. If anything goes it will be those. The poplar is really hard But let’s just say I’ll be careful opening it. Heck, maybe I’ll build a support for it when I open it up.
Edit: actually I’m wrong about the screws on the runner side, I think they might be inch or 1 and a quarter inch, and I screwed them into the runner plus another 3/4 inch spacer that I glued to it. The thing SHOULD be pretty darn sturdy.
Yep, Stock 3/4" screws are the common fail point.
I glued a lip on a scrap piece of walnut, treated it with the oil to match, and attached it to the 3/4” plywood plug that I’d epoxied into the back of the hand:
I attached the other side of the walnut to the case, and finally, the hand is on:
Here’s a shot from the front:
Next I started on the lower bulkhead:
Here is the center bulkhead test fitted with the GPU and a radiator:
I drilled additional holes in the center bulkhead, painted it, and cut the end off at a 45 degree angle. The plan is to screw the bulkheads in place and make a removable cover to allow access to the plumbing underneath. Except when I cut the end I didn’t account for the amount of material that would be removed. Something about Pythagorean theorem. Anyways, the one pass through was too close to the edge. But I really didn’t care at this point I just wanted it to be done and I figured I could make an appropriate adjustment in the cover that wouldn’t make it noticeable:
I made two symmetrical bulkheads to go underneath the rads too. Here is one attached, not painted yet.
Next came the tube fitting. This is was a nightmare.
Around 2am, after having fitted most of the other tubes, I realized that the right tube was not lining up between the radiator and the holes I drilled in the bulkhead below it:
It was so late and I just wanted to finish this thing… so I shamefully tried to bend a tube to fit:
Lol. Obviously that was not going to work. I went to bed and when I woke up I figured that if I had gone through all the trouble to make this thing, I was going to do it right. So I threw away all the bulkheads that I’d made and painted, and did it all over again- this time more accurately and with more sleep. Most of the tubes I had cut and fit would still work.
To be continued…
I thought you would stash the radiators behind the deco.
Yeahhhhh maybe I should have. I do think the angled RGB on the lian li fans will look cool though.
So I remade the bulkheads, this time correctly!
Fit the tubes down below- lots of funky bends to keep it compact (I want as thin of a bulkhead at the bottom as possible):
Then of course I washed the dust off all the fittings. Good thing there’s not many points of potential failure in this loop
Hung it on the wall… Not pictured- I added some pass through behind the wall and a couple new electrical outlets for the monitor, which is below the computer.
Finally, it’s up and assembled!! (Except the bottom cover, which I’ll get to soon). Going to do some leak testing tonight and then install the power supply and fill ‘er up! I’ll get some better pics too when it’s running and fully complete.
OK, I wasn't sure where you were going with this build but now that I see it coming together, I really like it! Great vision!
Thar's crazy and wonderful
That does look really good. Radiators stay out.
I wish I had noticed you were making the pump the highest point in the system. That's going to give you trouble at filling time. You will absolutely need to bleed the system with the pump on a switched PSU.
-It might be best to fill it laying flat even. There's a lot of air pocket potential with it sitting up.
Well I did fill it and it did surprisingly well at getting all of the air bubbles out just by running, starting, and stopping the system. What’s nice about these 60mm chonkers is that they have 6 ports on the bottom and an additional one on the top. I turned off the system and slowly unscrewed the top ports until water started to seep out. No more bubbles!
One thing that did happen which I wasn’t prepared for was when I turned the power supply off after the level in the reservoir stopped declining, the back pressure or momentum of the fluid shot it out of the top of the reservoir all over the ceiling lol. At least it was clear fluid so it didn’t stain anything.
Anyways, it runs great now. Just need to finish that bulkhead cover to mark this build complete…
I don't know why I thought the Alphacool port s.l.u.t wouldn't have a top port too.
Edit: C'mon, Bit. Some of the censor filtering is a little too sensitive.
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