Scratch Build – Complete Bean - Small form factor (COMPLETE!) - Final pics

Discussion in 'Project Logs' started by Nealieboyee, 6 Jun 2017.

  1. Nealieboyee

    Nealieboyee Packaging Master!

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    Hello all,
    This little project will be my return to the modding world. It will be a SFF build made of aluminium.
    I’ve been planning this build for a little while. It will be a birthday gift for my twin sister, whose nickname is “Bean”, hence the name of the PC. It needs to be completed before late July, so hold on to your hats!
    It won’t be anything fancy, but will contain a few goodies such as Arduino based RGB lighting (potentiometer control of each colour, and with homemade PCB to boot!), a little bit of acrylic, and some cutout work on the front and (maybe) side panels using needle files. Fairly intricate work for me, but I’m confident it can be done.
    Lets begin!

    I started out with a few different sizes of aluminium sheet. Here we have 1.5mm, 3mm and 5mm.
    The 5mm will be the base/bottom, 3mm for the motherboard plate and upright strength for the pc, and 1.5mm for the front/back and side panels.

    [​IMG]

    I didn’t want a regular sharp looking case so I decided to try my hand at bending sheet. I don’t have a bending brake, so this was my setup. That shiny tube is a 25mm diameter steel tube screwed to the side of a pallet, flush with the top. I then lay my aluminium sheet on top of it and overhanging the edge. After clamping down the sheet between that piece of wood and the pallet, I then used another piece of wood to bend the aluminium around the pipe.

    [​IMG]

    It worked beautifully and wasn’t difficult at all, though that may be because the aluminium is only 1.5mm thick.

    [​IMG]

    I also roughly cut out the 5mm base plate and 3mm motherboard plate and dry fitted them all together to see how it would look.

    [​IMG]

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    I received my used laser printer today and immediately printed out my pcb design on those yellow pcb transfer sheets from ebay and transferred it to my copper clad board. I was so eager to see the results that I didn’t even cut the pcb to size. I just broke off a suitably sized piece and etched it with Ferric Chloride. Worked like a charm, although there were a few nicks in some of the traces where the transfer didn’t take.

    [​IMG]

    I’ll cut a new piece tomorrow and redo it. I’m waiting for some liquid tin powder stuff from ebay to tin all the traces and some drill bits for the holes. Hopefully it will be here tomorrow.


    That’s all for now!
     
    Last edited: 6 Jun 2017
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  2. Dr. Coin

    Dr. Coin Member

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    You can use a sharpie to touch up the transfer.

    The initial bends look good.
     
  3. Nealieboyee

    Nealieboyee Packaging Master!

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    Thanks very much. Yeah I use a Staedtler fine point sharpie to fix up any broken tracks.
    I realised later on that I was mirroring the print before transfer so it would never have worked anyway lol.


    A small update. I've done some work on the main frame, but will only get pics tomorrow.


    I've finished the RGB Arduino board. Here it is from the back and then front.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    And with arduino plugged in :thumb:

    [​IMG]

    More tomorrow!

    Cheers
    Neal
     
  4. David

    David RIP Tel

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    Subbed.

    Looking forward to this one, Neal. :)
     
  5. Nealieboyee

    Nealieboyee Packaging Master!

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    Thanks David :thumb:

    Here is the main frame/motherboard plate. Everything looks grimy and scratched up now but it will all be cleaned up for anodising at the end.

    [​IMG]

    This is the upper part of the pc that will hide all the psu and other cabling.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Here is it mounted with a clamp and a cup showing the size. I didn't have a coke can sorry!

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    More tomorrow!
    Thanks for watching.

    Neal
     
  6. Nealieboyee

    Nealieboyee Packaging Master!

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    Hi all,
    Took a small break from the frame build as I wanted to change a couple of things I wasn't happy with. I got started on the front panel text.
    Here it is printed out and stuck to the front panel and i've started drilling and cutting.

    [​IMG]

    After a few hours

    [​IMG]]

    And sanded roughly to clean it up a bit so i can get a better look at any imperfections. Note that the two middle parts of the "B" still have to be put in, as does the middle dot in the "e".
    Still a bit of work to do on it.

    [​IMG]

    Thats all for today.
     
  7. Mosquito

    Mosquito Active Member

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    For a second there I thought you were going to be making a smaller version of The Caffeine Machine, what with the coffee cup and the name Bean.

    Look forward to seeing this one come together. I'm a fan of scratch builds :)
     
  8. Nealieboyee

    Nealieboyee Packaging Master!

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    Thanks man. That coffee maker looks really cool lol.

    Small update. I've almost finished the main part of the case. I've got my 120mm front intake fan so i'll sort out the mounting for that tomorrow.
    I've cut the front/top panel to size and will sort out the fixing of it tomorrow too. As you can see on the top left, it hasn't been attached yet. Also note that all the internal bolts/nuts are temporary ones. They will all be replaced with correct length bolts soon.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  9. stonedsurd

    stonedsurd Is a cackling Yuletide Belgian

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    Why not rivet? unless disassembly/reassembly is a priority.

    Looking good though, and I'm following along. Love a tidy SFF build
     
  10. Nealieboyee

    Nealieboyee Packaging Master!

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    Hi All,
    My apologies for the delay with this project. I've rebuilt it twice because I wasn't happy with my work. I'm happy now and can continue. I've finished 90% of the aluminium work and will start on the acrylic soon.

    Here you can see the Noctua fan above the hard drive mount. The HDD will sit on its side with ports pointing to the right.
    [​IMG]


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    My coke can is a little worse for wear...
    [​IMG]

    All of these screws will be button heads so they can be recessed into the acrylic.
    [​IMG]

    I still need to do the cutouts for mobo, gpu, and psu. I'll do that tomorrow.
    [​IMG]

    Here the motherboard tray is fitted. Notice the gap between the tray and the panel on the top left and bottom left. The tray is perfectly straight. The problem is the panel is warped inward slightly, which i'll straighten tomorrow.
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    I've ordered the psu (Silverstone ST45SF) and motherboard (GA-B250N Phoenix Wifi), and they should arrive in a few days.

    More soon. Thanks for your patience.

    Neal
     
  11. Nealieboyee

    Nealieboyee Packaging Master!

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    A little bit more progress today. I've cut out the openings for the motherboard i/o, gpu, and psu.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    I've also test fitted an old hard drive and it fits perfectly.
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    More soon!

    Cheers
    Neal
     
  12. Cheapskate

    Cheapskate Insane? or just stupid?

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    Dinky!
    Did I hear there would be plastic? :D
     
  13. Nealieboyee

    Nealieboyee Packaging Master!

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    Yes indeed you did. Acrylic lining between pc and side panels
     
  14. Nealieboyee

    Nealieboyee Packaging Master!

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    Hi all,
    I've made tons of progress but the photos are still to be taken! Here are a few dealing with the led lighting, and a short video showing me testing the rgb lighting i'll be using for the side panels.

    I redesigned the led panel to be circular as it gets the light to the corners of the panels better.
    [​IMG]

    I actually mounted the smd leds vertically, which was....interesting. My first time using surface mount components and I attempt something like that.... Worked out well though.
    [​IMG]

    A closer shot of the 150 ohm resistors. I enjoyed soldering these. So dainty.
    [​IMG]

    Here is Mach 2 of the arduino controller board. I had to move it to another position in the case, so I needed to make it square instead of rectangular. Also, I had to remove the female connectors underneath the arduino to drop the total height to under 19mm so it would fit in the top compartment of the case.
    [​IMG]

    Here is a lighting test with a sneak peak at the acrylic side panelling. Take a look at @Bennibo scratch builds and you'll see where I got my inspiration from when he did the first htpc case.
    [​IMG]

    And the lighting test....I'm happy with this.


    The GTX 1050 arrived. This thing is tiny!!
    [​IMG]

    And here is the motherboard. Lovely little thing.
    [​IMG]

    More photos on tuesday!

    Chow
    Neal
     
  15. Cheapskate

    Cheapskate Insane? or just stupid?

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    :lol: I think you may be ill. It's lovely work, though. The vertical solders look like they involved a lot of cursing and wishing for a 90-degree bent solder tip.
    Taking a page from Bennybo's build: OK, read all my suggestions in that thread and save me from re-posting them.
     
  16. Dr. Coin

    Dr. Coin Member

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    That LED board is a thing of beauty. Love the pattern of of all the traces.
     
  17. Nealieboyee

    Nealieboyee Packaging Master!

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    Yeah i saw your suggestions there. I also designed this board to sit further away from the edge of the acrylic so that I don't get any "spotting" (seeing individual leds). The circular board measures 120mm diameter. The leds are 3528 plcc-4, so thats 3.5mmx2.8mm. Bloody tiny things. Getting them to mount vertically was easy. Adding the small diagonal jumpers was a pain in the a**.

    Thanks man. I used easyeda.com to design the board and did the traces manually instead of using their autorouter (silly thing). I didn't try to make it symmetrical. I was just trying to keep the traces spaced evenly so i could go as large as possible with them. The outside ring trace is 1mm wide. The rest of the traces are 0.6mm. Came out really well with the toner transfer method and etched quite fast.
     
  18. Nealieboyee

    Nealieboyee Packaging Master!

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    The cooler hath arrived! Noctual NH-L9i. This thing is small but really heavy for it's size. Can't wait to install it.

    [​IMG]
     
  19. Bennibo

    Bennibo Member

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    Your build is looking really good so far! I like small cases. Its just a lot more challenging to fit everyhing inside!

    Im glad, that my work is an inspiration for others! :blush:
    If you keep your LEDs a little further away from the edges, which i couldnt do, you will be fine with a more evenly illuminted acrylic ;)
     
  20. Nealieboyee

    Nealieboyee Packaging Master!

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    Thanks very much. Loving your new build btw! So beautifully made.


    Update time. My apologies for the delay. Work is hectic at the moment but i'm very close to getting the acrylic work done.

    I've mounted the USB 3 ports and power button. I wanted everything to have a flush look so nothing bolted to the top or front panels.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Here it is with the front/top cover in place. I still need to clean up the usb port cutouts.
    [​IMG]

    I've also just about finished the bottom panel air intake for the GPU.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    And last but not least, I changed the front panel because I wasn't happy with it. Here is the new one, 75% finished. Its a cat, in case you were wondering... My sister loves her cats.
    There will be a sheet of frosted acrylic behind this to diffuse the light and allow it to shine evenly through the cutouts.
    [​IMG]

    And here is the name almost done. Lots of cleanup work to do. All of this was cut with a combination of jigsaw, fret saw, needle files and minute strips of emery cloth and sandpaper.
    [​IMG]

    Thanks for watching! More hopefully in a couple of days when I have the acrylic sides cut and mounted.

    Cheers
    Neal
     
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