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Modding My naked wall mount mod

Discussion in 'Modding' started by agent420, 25 May 2006.

  1. agent420

    agent420 What's a Dremel?

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    Meet COLOSSUS:

    [​IMG]

    I named the project Colossus for a couple reasons. #1, Colossus was the name of the first programmable electronic computer (reference) and this is my first 'mod'. Also, Colossus was the name of the infamous computer in the 70's sci-fi movie of the same name (reference) that in conjunction with it's Soviet counterpart takes over humanity.

    The cheap flash photo really doesn't do it justice, the flash seems to bring out the minor haze in the lexan that is not visible under normal lighting; it look much more polished and shiny by eye. Don't know why, I just like the 'tech' look of the exposed components.

    95% complete, I am finishing a lexan panel that holds the power button and indicator lights and will be positioned at the bootom right corner, eliminating that dangling ribbon cable in the picture. Also, I am going to mount some kind of conduit for the cables below.

    [​IMG]

    Colossus started life as a Dell 400Sc server, picked up a p4 3.2 system for about $200 after coupons and rebates. I built a 1" square tube aluminum frame and mounted the components on a sheet of lexan (not plexi). Open mounted th psu and hand wired all the components. Chopped off all the drive molex connections, just soildered the plug pins to the end of the wire and heat shrinked the connection to avoid potential shorting.

    [​IMG]

    I picked up a Betabrite scrolling sign display for cheap off eBay. The Betabrite units are nice in that unlike many of the other scrolling displays, there is open published programming data available (many others are propietary). The display connects via RS232 serial and is driven by a small VB app that I coded. This interfaces with MotherBoardMonitor to display all kinds of system stats such as voltages, temps, etc.

    Here's a shaky small digicam wmv showing the scrolling display in action. Sorry for the ppor quality, combination of cheap camera and limited bandwidth.

    I have been experimenting with coding voice recoginition and speech synthesis into the system, future plans are to see if I can get good voice control and feedback, as well as a faux AI chatbot like WinAlice.

    Thanks for looking.
     
    Last edited: 25 May 2006
  2. WireFrame

    WireFrame <b>PermaBanned</b>

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    Thats really cool. Sick of modding your case? Bin the case!
    Is it removable? IE, its all ficed to something in that metal reame, and can be taken off the wall?
     
  3. agent420

    agent420 What's a Dremel?

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    The panel itself is not meant to be disassembled, but it is hung on the wall similarly to a picture frame. The two handles on the top are the only connection to the wall, so that it can be taken down and moved if need be. The handles also allow for (relatively) easy transport. However, I live in the sticks and have no need or plans to move it any time soon.
     
  4. olly_lewis

    olly_lewis What's a Dremel?

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    Well lets just hope that it doesnt try and take over the world! Like Colossus: The Forbin Project...
     
  5. Hiren

    Hiren mind control Moderator

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    Woa, great mod. :thumb:
     
  6. agent420

    agent420 What's a Dremel?

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    Thanks!

    Also, while thinking of how to mount all the components, I discovered a great piece of hardware called the wellnut. Allowed me to attach everything easily from the front only, and additionally provides vibration insulation. In my area they are cheap and found locally at the hardware store.
     
  7. jopers1986

    jopers1986 Minimodder

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    love it!
    i tried something like this, but failed miserably :(
    but this is a total sucess!

    take it this isn't a LAN machine then :p
     
  8. antiHero

    antiHero ReliXmas time!

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    Sweet!

    How is it with temps and noise?
     
  9. agent420

    agent420 What's a Dremel?

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    Initially I didn't know what to expect, but it turns out that the open architecture and vertical mounting position work very well for cooling. The psu fan is temp controlled, and hasn't run at an audible speed. The cpu fan is an aftermarket low noise design (can't recall the manufacturer atm) and is very quiet. The loudest component is the optical drive; when it comes up to speed it sounds like a jet engine! But other than that I couldn't be happier. I am also surprised that for whatever reason, it has attracted almost no dust.
     
  10. GuardianStorm

    GuardianStorm Minimodder

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    better than my friends attempy, yours looks pro, his look like bits of a pc duck taped to a wall...which it was :p
     
  11. Atomic

    Atomic Gerwaff

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    You think of building a cable duct for the cables going down to the monitors/peripherals? Would look a bit neater then :)

    Those power connections where the molexs would be scare me too!
     
  12. TheoGeo

    TheoGeo What are these goddamn animals?!

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    interesting, i'd probably straighten up some of the cables like the ide cable but looks good.

    not sure how safe having an open PSU on your wall is though
     
  13. zachjowi

    zachjowi What's a Dremel?

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    doesn't the cd or dvd drive get dusty lasers
     
  14. BlackMath

    BlackMath What's a Dremel?

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    Could explain or diagram how you wired (power) this thing. Which is awesome BTW. the reason I ask is I want to do somehing similar for an upcoming project. :rock:
     
  15. agent420

    agent420 What's a Dremel?

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    Well, with the open frame psu, I guess I won't get a UL or CE certificate :D But really it is located in an area where it is not likely to a contact hazard. And if someone is dancing around on my desk, they deserve to be shocked because they know damn well the pole I stole from the strip club is on the other side of the room!

    I'm not scared ;) The few dangling wires are now cleaned up, and the ribbon cable is no longer used, so it's a bit cleaner.

    The power distribution is common industry standard type terminal blocks, and despite it's open appearance there's not much danger there either. All contact points are recessed to prevent accidental contact, and most of the terminals are the same ground, 5v and 12v wires that are in every pc case. At the component end, it's the same pin connector from the molex, just without the nylon end; the heatshrink tubing is an equally effective insulator.

    Basically I just chopped the leads off a standard psu and wired them to the termianl block. Then from there to the pc components as would normally be done. I didn't want to fuss with the mobo molex, so I left that connector on. The rest is just trying to be tidy with cable ties and the like. I did get some really nice shiny teflon insulated wire from end spools at work :naughty:
     
    Last edited: 26 May 2006
  16. ice-tea

    ice-tea Mr.PC-Max

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    hmm this is "boring" ;)

    look @ this :hehe: :hehe: :hehe:
    [​IMG]
     
  17. agent420

    agent420 What's a Dremel?

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    Look like you missed a spot :D
     
  18. ice-tea

    ice-tea Mr.PC-Max

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    it is not my pc, i found this pic in the internet
     
  19. Navig

    Navig What's a Dremel?

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    Looks great. You could consider tinting your lexan to give it a little more presence, if that's what you want. Also, I might consider an RF remote to turn it on/off that way you don't have to reach up there. I took an 3 channel remote on one of my systems and modded so that button#1 turns on/off, button#2 opens/closes DVD drive, and button#3 turns on/off cold cathods

    navig
     
  20. gpw111

    gpw111 What's a Dremel?

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    good job on the cable routing!
     

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