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Case Mod - In Progress [MSI PRO MOD - S4] Arcade Dragon

Discussion in 'Project Logs' started by random2k4, 7 Jun 2016.

  1. random2k4

    random2k4 Active Member

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    [​IMG]

    Hi everyone its Random2k4Design again :)

    For this season of the MSI PRO MOD Season, I was planning something special so lets have a look
    on the concept first.

    [Concept]
    Normally case mods are only to looking at, but this time I was planning to actually build a case mod pleople are
    allowed and invited to touch and interact with. So I decided to build my very own Arcade Cabint mod.
    My concept should combine the oldschool look of an arcade machine with the powerfull hardware neccesary to run all the
    modern games too. So the outside will be designed in a way siutable for the Arcade Style and the inside will be get a very clean
    and futiristic look with a custom made watercooling. As a little highlight there will be also a Dragon bursting out of the Arcade machine
    equipmed with light and smoke effects.
    Because the mod later should be placed in my living room, i was going for a classical Bartop design.

    The mod will also be the first one world wide featuring the new MSI X99A XPower Gaming Titanium :)

    [The Hardware]

    CPU: INTEL I7 5820K
    Mobo: MSI X99A XPOWER Gaming Titanium
    GPU: MSI GTX 980Ti Lightning
    Memory: HyperX Savage 8x8GB
    Storage 2*HyperX Savage SSD 480GB
    PSU: Silverstone ST75F-GS
    Case: Thermaltake Supressor F51
    Watercooling: parts by bitspower
    Sleeving: gosumodz
    Misc: gosumodz + Phobya
    Monitor: Eizo Foris FS2434

    And here ererythin in pictures:

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    Right here I would like to thank all my sponsors: MSI, INTEL, bitspower, HyperX, Eizo, gosumodz and Phobya for the wonderfull support and the trust in my work.
    Without them projects like this would not be possible. In addition thanks to the shop arcadewinkel.nl for giving me a nice dicsount on all the arcade products needed.
     
  2. random2k4

    random2k4 Active Member

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    Lets begin now.

    If you belive it or not everything started from this little sketch.

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    Later I transfered this sketch into a 3D model. Here I made the layout for all the hardware and also positioned the dragon on top.

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    Here are some of the renderings showing the possible outcome.

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    Because I had to wait for some orders to arrive, I decided to start with the dragon parts first.
    The 3D model of the dragon needed to be heavily modifyed to match my concept. Therefore i worked on each part individually.

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    After all the changes were done, I transfered the 3D model into Pepakura and prepared the layout (A4 sheets) for cutting erevything from paper.

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    And then the cutting started.

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  3. random2k4

    random2k4 Active Member

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    And here we go with the all the paper work.

    I started to build the head of the dragon which had the most parts.

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    After that I made the wings and fangs as well. I had to use a lot of tape for the wings to hold everything in place.
    But, it will not be an issue later.

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    To give everything more stability, the inside was filled with expanding foam.
    As you can see in the picture, I also installed some wires for the light effect.
    This had to be done before filling in the expanding foam od course.
    Inside the dragons head I also installed a pipe made of paper, so I can put another
    flexible pipe inside for the smoke effects.

    [​IMG]
     
  4. random2k4

    random2k4 Active Member

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    After the expandin foam was set, I smoothed out the outer edges, by applying some layers of paper maché.

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    After the layers dried, I started to build the teeth. They are made from foam which i cut into shape
    and attached them with small wooden sticks.

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    At the end everything was again smoothed out with paper maché. It is first grey and later becomes white while drying,
    Unfortunately, I forgott to take some pictures of the painting process but you will see it later on in a making of video.

    [​IMG]
     
  5. Dot_Kappa

    Dot_Kappa 100% Puppet

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    :jawdrop:

    The making of the Dragon make me carzy :clap::clap::clap:

    Did the foam reach every corner ? and did the cardboard-shell hold-up gainst the expanding foam?
     
  6. random2k4

    random2k4 Active Member

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    I hade to make multiple holes into the paper model to fill in the foam, but it reaches nearly every corner. only two or three are not filled. I used 250g/m² paper, so it was already a pretty strong construction in the first place. I only got one spot were the expanding foam broke the paper due to a weak glue connection. Other than that it worked out really well.
     
  7. Dragonphreak

    Dragonphreak Member

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    I'm downloading Pepakura Designer now to play around with it. This build is awesome!
     
  8. random2k4

    random2k4 Active Member

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    Thanks man!.
    If you want to save or export your layouts in pepakura you need to buy the "pro" version, buts it is only 35 bucks. It is incredible what you can do with paper :D I use it nrealy in every Mod.
     
  9. Dragonphreak

    Dragonphreak Member

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    To print them out, does that require saving or exporting?
     
  10. random2k4

    random2k4 Active Member

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    To simply print out patterns you dont need to save or export. You can jst print directly or to a PDF. But if you want to change the cutting layout or make your own one, then you need to save.

    You can also export an already existing paper model to a 3D program like Maya or Cinem4D. Therefore you need to buy the program.

    But there are a lot free models out there you just need to load into the program and print.
     
  11. Cheapskate

    Cheapskate Insane? or just stupid?

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    I don't know, man. It seems kinda small. :lol: Looking great, though.
     
  12. random2k4

    random2k4 Active Member

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    Haha, yes, next time I will increase the scale ;)

    After the dragon was done, I started with the basic construction of the Arcade Machine.

    I used 12mm plywood to give everything the needed stability. First, I transfered the
    outline of the wooden panels to one wooden sheet which will be the side panel later on.

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    After that, I drew the outline of the later shape on the wood and cut it out twice for both sides.

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    I made small blocks from wood, that will be later used to assemble the inner structures and hold the other panels.
    Those block were clued and screwed into place. I tried to do as much work as pissoble from the inside, so I dont have to hide
    so many holes later on the outside.

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    Then I started to prepare the other panels. First I built the panel for the speakers.
    I disambled old PC speakers and marked the position for the hole. After cutting, I checked the position and wraped
    the panel with some black vinyl.

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    To create a typical speaker mesh, I used some mesh you normally use to protect your window against mosquitos :)
    Glued it in place and attached the speakers from the back.

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  13. random2k4

    random2k4 Active Member

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    As the next step, I amde the backplate
    This plate will not be glued, but only screwed into place to make it easier to remove if necessary.

    At the end, the radiators should be installed to this plate, So I took the outlines of the
    cover, transfered them onto the plate and start cutting it out.

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    Later, the hardware will be placed on an extra panel inside, so I also cut two openings to have two seperate doors at the top and bottom part
    of the backplate. I also made the cut outs for the fan controller. Afterwards everything got a final sanding by hand.

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    The entire inside should have a nice an clean look at the end. My color choice is white/silver/red. So I attached
    on layer of carbon foile to every visible part o the inside.

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  14. random2k4

    random2k4 Active Member

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    Next up, I started assembling the basic construction.
    All the parts were glued and then screwed into place, to hold everything tide together.

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    Because I wanted to get access to the cable management of the joysticks and buttons later easily, I installed a hinge for the opening.
    Then the plate for the buttons etc. was attached as well. This plate has to be very stable, to handle all the pressure and the violence
    of people not used to play on arcade machines. Therefore, I glued two 0.3 cm HDF plates together and strengthen them with two wooden block on both sides.

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    To keep the joystick panel in position, I attached magnets to the side panel. In addition a small wood block was also attached to support
    the panel in the "rest" position.


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    Then it was time to actually make the button layout. I went for the standart Japanese acrade layout with a nice curve to the buttons.
    I not only drilled the holes into the HDF plate, but also attached an 0.3 cm acrylic plate on top to get a nice finish later on.
    You also can see, why the machine got a little wide. Now two players can perfectly stand next to each other and there is a little space
    between the two joysticks and buttons. I also made a first test fitting, if all the buttons are going in as planned.

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    Because, I not only want to use the joystick, but sometimes also need a mouse and keyboard for gaming or maintanance, I build a drawer to put the pheriphery
    in, and also hide it.

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  15. random2k4

    random2k4 Active Member

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    Next up, I build a mounting system for the monitor.
    The monitor was directly screwed on a wooden panel.

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    Then I screwed and glued small wodden blocks on the side panel to attach the monitor panel on that.

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    I also glued the panel for the speakers in place.

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    To hide the inside, I needed a plate around the monitor. I used a 0,3 cm HDF plate for that. The edgeds were slightly smoothed out to give it
    a nice finish later on.

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    To get access to the inside, I made a back door. I also included a lock, so that only I can open it :)

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  16. random2k4

    random2k4 Active Member

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    After the basic construction is finally done, I started with modifying some water cooling parts.
    I changed the mounting plate of the CPU block from a black to a white one, and also changed the pump cover of the DDC
    to a white one as well. In addition, the radiators got some layers of white paint to fit the overall design.

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    Then, I started to cut the original case into pieces. In the end it looked a bit like the smaller brother of a core P5 :)

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    Afterwards, I made a test fitting with the case and the water tanks to finalize the position of each part. I also marked the
    spots for the groomet later on.

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    Then I cut all the needed holes in a wooden plate, that will function as the new backplate of the case.

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    To hide the bottom of the case, and to put the SSDs in a more spotlight position, I bent an aluminum sheet and attached it in place.
    Holes for the cables were also added. Then I wraped it with white carbon foile like the rest of the inside. The case itself was also painted
    with white spraypaint. And then I made a test fit again.

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  17. Dot_Kappa

    Dot_Kappa 100% Puppet

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    You can make a kit ikea-style so everyone could build up his own cabinet :D

    The back-door, the front opening and the keyboard drawer...this cabinet is full of great solutions:clap:


    But what about the little dragon ?:worried:
     
  18. random2k4

    random2k4 Active Member

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    Thankls man! Don´t worry, the dragon will be added at the end :)
     
  19. random2k4

    random2k4 Active Member

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    As a next step, I started installing the joysticks and buttons. First, I printed a Street Fighter design and put it between the
    arcylic plate and the wooden panel. After cutting in all the holes, I attached the buttons.

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    Then it was time to start with the cables.The wirering of all the buttons and joysticks took some time, but I am really happy with the result.
    At the moment, I am testing two different approaches to make them run. On the left side, I soldered the buttons directly to
    an old arcade stick PCB, and on the right side, I use a so called I-PAC which emulates keyboard inputs. I have to do some testing
    and later decide which will fit my needs the most.

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    And it was also time for the paint job. I primed everything grey and dapped white paint on the surface with a spondge. I tried to achiev a
    concret kind of look. Because, I am a total noob when it comes to painting stuff, I got some help from my fiance. We took the MSI Dragon
    and made it look like old school video game characters like PAC-MAN, Ryu, Q-Bert, Spaceinvaders or Donkey Kong. We also included the
    sponsors in the paint job.

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    While the paint was drying, I installed the light system for the marquee. I also cut the name of the mod "Arcade Dragon" in the Street Fighter font into vinyl
    and attached it to acrylic glass for the marquee. Then some lighstrips for the bottom were also attached.

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    To finish the paint job, I made some stencils and added some highligts to the drawers.

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    And as a last step here, I sleeved all the cables in white and red to match my color theme and the overall design. Then I installed the hardware and
    cables so far.

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  20. CMos

    CMos Member

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    This mod is awesome, me likes a lot :) ... im not sure if it is a good idea to put the secret combo on the outside of the case though :D
     

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