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Not RatMod the 3rd - Upgrades and Further Procrastinations

Discussion in 'Watercooling' started by The_Crapman, 10 Dec 2014.

  1. The_Crapman

    The_Crapman Don't phone it's just for fun.

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    I thought it about time I put the multitude of watercooling gear I have lying idle into action, since my case mod is obviously going nowhere fast. For my birthday last month (and some this month) I treated myself to a plethora of new gear and the remaining parts i needed for the loops, including; a bunch of fittings, coolant, GPU block, EVGA GTX 970 Cheesecake, a Fractal Arc Midi 2 to put it all in and a Dell U2412M to watch the pretty graphics on.

    Parts I already had were; Alphacool NexXxoS XP³ CPU block, Alphacool NexXxoS ST30 240mm radiators, 2 Laing DDC-1T+ Ultra pumps, an XSPC Laing DDC Dual Bay reservoir, an Alphacool Heatmaster 2 controller with waterblock and Xigmatec's Crystal CLF red LED fans.

    First up I removed the upper hard drive cage and moved the lower one into it's middle position to make room for the front rad. I can't move it to the one furthest back due to my gigantic PSU. As the 5.25" bays will be taken up with my res and pumps, I had to find somewhere else to put the Heatmaster.
    [​IMG]
    That should do nicely :thumb:

    I'd thought about using sticky foam pads to attach it to the drive cage, but wanted something a bit more secure and to leave a gap for cooling and to avoid contact between them. So holes were drilled
    [​IMG]

    I had loads of rubber grommets from other builds i've done for friends, so thought they'd be ideal for raising the board up.
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    2 were a little too much and I couldn't get the nut on, 1 was still too low, so i tried these ones instead.
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    Again 1 wasn't tall enough, 2 way too much, but a combination of one of each type and a little squishing and perfecto!
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Then took it off again to attach the waterblock before installing it in the case.
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    [​IMG]

    The front fans and rad attach to the removable front panel. This made installation really easy as I could lay the rad on the floor, line the fans up on top of it then putting the panel over them both and threading the screws through. Shiny copper crews :D
    [​IMG]

    The top rad was a different matter though as I wanted the fans on that one in a pull config. I had to slide all the screws through, along with some rubber washers to dampen the sound, thread each fan on and hold on to them while placing the rad on top of them and then try and hold it all in place while trying to get the screws through and into the rad. Took a couple of attempts to get it right without something falling off or out.
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    Would probably have been much easier to have them in push, but was worth it in the end.

    Next up I put the CPU block on and hear is where my trouble started. Although I didn't notice it until i put the motherboard into the case, you can see the broken capacitor here in the pic below, just below the top PCI catch being all wonky donkey :sigh:
    [​IMG]

    :waah::waah::waah::waah::waah::waah::waah:
    [​IMG]

    While waiting to get that fixed (or replaced) I though I'd crack on with the rest in preparation, starting with mounting the GPU block. It's an Alphacool NexXxos NVXP GTX 760 which sexy full-cover copper goodness fits the EVGA ACX2 970's, as they use the same PCB as the 760.
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    And a little black backplate :naughty:
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    Then I mounted the pumps into the bay-res
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    And with fittings and Phobya inline temp sensors on the inlets.
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    Yes it's a bit odd with 1 copper fitting, i bought it ages ago and silly not to use it. Wont be seen anyway so will be fine.

    I installed that in the case and then set to work on the piping. The 2 loops go:
    Pump 1->Top Rad->CPU->Res 1
    Pump 2->GPU->Heatmaster->Front Rad->Res 2
    [​IMG]

    The line from Pump 1 to the top rad is curved around that much as all lines to and from the res need some slack. I have to pull the res out the front a little to fill it which is a right pita, but i like the curvy curvy. That particular line can be mostly hidden behind the rad but will see what it looks like with coolant in.
    [​IMG]

    And that's it for now. My new soldering iron arrived today and should be getting the new cap tomorrow. Have the day off work so hoping to have it all sorted and filled tomorow. :D

    Hopefully....
     
    Last edited: 15 Apr 2015
  2. The_Crapman

    The_Crapman Don't phone it's just for fun.

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    It's Filling Time!

    The moment of truth. Praying for no leaks.

    [​IMG]

    Also hoping 1 litre will be enough. Have some di water if they need a top up and can add more die if need be.
     
  3. MarkVarley

    MarkVarley Member

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    Probably need a little over 1 litre, but then you'll know by now!

    Sent from my Nexus 7 using Tapatalk
     
  4. The_Crapman

    The_Crapman Don't phone it's just for fun.

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    1 litre turned out to be fine, still got a little left over. Looking good so far, but the gpu loop seems to be rather bubble happy. will probably need to run for quite a while to settle down properly.

    [​IMG]

    And no sign of leaks. Yet.... :worried:
     
  5. The_Crapman

    The_Crapman Don't phone it's just for fun.

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    Moved the res properly into the case and secured it with a couple of thumb screws. I decided to move the return pipe from the top rad from out the front....
    [​IMG]

    ....to sneaking round the back. Looks neater and better this way i think.
    [​IMG]

    Sadly, after leaving both loops running for a while, there seems to be a rattling noise coming from the res as though there some debris come loose from somewhere. Or it could be something else, I'm not sure.

    If you could have a listen and let me know what you think that'd be much appreciated.
     
  6. Big Elf

    Big Elf Oh no! Not another f----ing elf!

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    I can't really hear it properly over the whine of the pumps but it could just be bubbles working their way through the pump/loop.
     
  7. MarkVarley

    MarkVarley Member

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    If you have a bubble problem, a couple of drops of washing-up liquid into the res can help.

    Make sure your res is full right up, sometimes with those just a little low can make it noisy.

    Noises could be an airlock, rotating the whole rig every-which-way can help, not just tilting, upside down and all, watch the tubes for air.

    I can't watch your vid right now...

    Sent from my Nexus 7 using Tapatalk
     
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  8. The_Crapman

    The_Crapman Don't phone it's just for fun.

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    I let it run for a good few hours last night, giving it a jiggle and a tilt every now and then, tapping the cpu block and rad (as the noise is only coming from that loop) but it continued. So this morning I empties the res and low and behold, nothing. No bits of any kind to be found.

    As it was possible it came out when i empties it, i filled it back up with fresh coolant from the bottle, turned it on aaaaand the noise is still there. :wallbash:

    I think the problem might be that the cpu loop is not very restrictive, that side of the res has a lot more disturbance than the gpu side. With the pump running at full whack pushing 600 l/h, it might be that it's going too fast. Hopefully it will cease once I get them turned down through the heatmaster. If not, I'm going to be sooooo pissed. :miffed:

    Will get it all set up and see what happens and report back. Thanks for the help guys.
     
  9. Big Elf

    Big Elf Oh no! Not another f----ing elf!

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    It could be the pump impellor, either at the bearing or possibly hitting the res every now and then.
     
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  10. The_Crapman

    The_Crapman Don't phone it's just for fun.

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    If that's the case slowing it down might well solve it.

    Spent hours this afternoon working on cable management (as well as watching a couple of seasons of Archer). Bit messy round the back, especially behind the hard drive cage
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    But looks pretty decent round the front.
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    Got it booted up but the pumps didn't spin up. I had the pumps plugged into fan headers on the hm2 to try and control them. It wasn't very clear in the manual exactly how to do this, only that if you plug them into the 3 headers meant for pumps and flow meters you wont be able to control them.

    Swapped them over to power them through the pump headers and turned it on. Pumps going, front fans going, but top fans not spinning up. I booted into windows and kept an eye on the temps while i worked out what was going on. Installed the drivers and software for the hm2 and on opening the software up, found that as standard it only has the first 2 fan headers switched on. Would explain the pumps didn't spin up originally.

    Going to have a play with it tomorrow see if I can get the pumps working off the fan headers. Also have to try and work out why the rear fan refuses to spin at anything less than maximum. Now it's time for pizza and movies :thumb:
     
  11. MarkVarley

    MarkVarley Member

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    In the video I'm hearing a high pitch ticking and a low pitch rattling.

    Bubbles can sound like a higher pitch almost clicking sound.

    If your pump is too powerful for your loop you'll see alot of swirling in your res as the returning water comes in really fast, in this case compare it to the other loops res.

    When in setting a system up I reduce the pump speed to just before it affects temps under torture, I build them quiet!

    Sent from my GT-I9505 using Tapatalk
     
  12. The_Crapman

    The_Crapman Don't phone it's just for fun.

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    So i've managed to get this all sorted and turn down the pumps a little. Anything below 8.7v and they have a tendency to switch off momentarily every now and then. They're still noisy has fudge, but i've improved things slightly with the addition of noise absorbing foam around the drive bay. Shame as ran heaven for half an hour and was able to keep fans at their minimum speed with some great temps; 48 on GPU @stock, 59 on CPU@4.3 1.3v :rock:

    Don't get much light at all off my LED fans at these speeds, so think I'll invest in some LED strips to brighten things up.
    [​IMG]
    Also pondering mounting the GPU in the vertical PCI bracket using an extender so you can actually see the block in all it's coppery glory, but that's for later. Now it's time to download Far Cry 4 :D

    Thanks again guys for all your help.
     
    Last edited: 15 Dec 2014
  13. The_Crapman

    The_Crapman Don't phone it's just for fun.

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    Rebirth

    Tthe missing cap on my M5G started rearing it's ugly head and I was getting random reboots all the time. I'd planned on making a few changes/upgrades to the loops so sought out a replacement motherboard to get it all sorted in one go. Managed to get a great deal on an ASRock Z77 Extreme, a great looking board too.
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    With the gold caps on the board I decided to go with a white colour scheme, as red LEDs might drown them out. Draining the loop was such a pain in the arse with the res in the 5.25" bays, but eventually I drained it pretty good and started cleaning the loop with some Mayhems Blitx part deux. Depsite rinsing everything through before filling with the cleaning solution, it picked up a good amount of the red colouring left over, so really glad I gave it a proper cleaning.
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    While it was running through I noticed a cool vortex in the fluid exiting the GPU block.
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    Well, I thought it was cool anyway. ha ha

    I wanted to mount the GPU in the verticle PCI slot that's in the Arc Midi with a PCI riser cable, but the weight would put an awful strain on the rear bracket and in a quick test the card sagged badly. Some supports were in order so i chopped up and filed down some aluminium angle I'd bought for the case mod i've semi-permanently abandoned.
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    Quick bit of JB Weld later...
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    And added some bits of cable sheilding to prevent scratching
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    Test fitted in the case and my measurement was 1mm out. Was really annoyed as I'd got the supports made to the exact height i wrote down, even taking into account the sheilding. I just wrote the wrong number down. :duh: I've since sorted this with a rubber pad though.
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    I also moved my res/pump combo down the the bottom of the case and mounted it to a pair of Shoggy Sandwhiches to kill the noise, as was pretty bad in the 5.25" bays.

    With the res in the bottom of the case the only place for mounting my SSD was behind the motherboard tray. It's the only thing that runs off SATA pwoer connectors so I chopped the rest off as they'd just take up what little space I have back there.
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    I'd noticed previously that the backplate on the GPU got pretty dam hot, so I bought some heatsinks of the mp and attached the to the backplate with Phobya thermal glue.
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    After installing a white LED strip in the bottom of the case, I got everything plugged and plumbed ready for filling.
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    Aaaaand full.
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    After getting everything up and running I ran into a few issues. The performace was waaaaay down on where it should be, only scoring 800 in Heaven on extreme settings, when previously it had been over 10,000 1400. A quick consultation with the bit tech bods it was concluded that the riser would probably be getting interference from the PSU. I put a strip of rubber on top of the PSU and wrapped the riser in 4 layers of foil.
    [​IMG]

    Thankfully it worked a treat and it's now running smoothly. I'm dead chuffed with how it looks too.
    [​IMG]
    I'll have to dig out the proper camera as my phone can't pic up the lighting properly and get some decent pics up.
     
  14. The_Crapman

    The_Crapman Don't phone it's just for fun.

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    Coming soon to a buildlog near you...
    [​IMG]
    Upgrades.
    Febuary 2018
     
  15. The_Crapman

    The_Crapman Don't phone it's just for fun.

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    Upgrades and Further Procrastinations

    Much like a Ubisoft game, delays were always inevitable weren't they :rollingeyes: Whilst RatMod lies languishing in a box waiting for good weather (and some enthusiasm, dedication, lack of excuses...) it's time for some upgrades!

    So lets start with the old:
    [​IMG]

    There was an ever increasing frequency of problems with it, like failing to pick up drives, USB ports not working, failed boots etc, so I picked up a new Motherboard and CPU off the market place, got a few watercooling goodies for christmas and then the final few bits on Jan payday
    [​IMG]
    Z270i with de-lidded 7700K, 250GB m.2 drive and 16GB RAM. 3400MHz CL16

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    New cooling set up with Aquearo 6LT with heatsink, waterblock and mounting brackets and new PWM fans: 4x 120mm and 2x 140mm EK Furious Vardar EVO.

    [​IMG]
    Watercool Heatkiller IV Pro and Thermalright ram cooler, although I'm not sure if the RAM cooler will fit with the rad clearance,

    [​IMG]
    Thermal pastes, pads, cleaner for all the blocks. A few male to male fittings and 2 90degree male to female fittings. A usb3 to usb2 cable as the mobo only has USB 3 and the Aquearo needs 2. Joy. And a pure copper IHS for the 7700K.

    [​IMG]
    Finally some new coolant. Mayhems orange pastel amd some silver aurora booster. Will hopefully have a nice effect.

    With the loop drained you can really tell it's been 3 years since it was plumbed in.
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    Never had a problem with temps but glad I was cleaning it out before this got too bad.

    The res was in a bit of a state so would need a thorough cleaning before setting up the new loops. Fortunately I had some Mayhems Blitz left over from when I switched from red to white coolant which would kill off whatever this was growing in there.
    [​IMG]

    Before cleaning the loops I wanted to spruce up the rads a bit, which had become quite dull in the 6 years since stripping the paint off, so I gave the side plates a quick sanding down and polished up the copper chambers with a dremel polishing wheel.
    [​IMG]
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    And into the wash we go.
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    Took so long to flush all the blitz out, must have had to fill and drain the loop about 10 times, but at least I new everything would be nice and clean. It didn't get the red scum out the res, but should have killed off whatever it was.

    This fortune cookie clearly knows me well. :worried:
    [​IMG]

    To try and cut down on the mass of cables at the back, I removed the front panel fan controller, USB and Audio port wires which reduced the clutter considerably and then gave the case a good cleaning
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    Next I cleaned up the CPU, gave the IHS a light sanding with some 2000grit sandpaper and reapplied some Thermal Grizzly's Conductonaut between the die and IHS.
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    I was bricking it somewhat having never done it before, so forgot to take any pictures of the in between stages.:duh: Was pretty happy with how it went though.

    I'd never handled an M.2 drive before and I knew they were small, but sweet baby jesus they're tiny!:jawdrop:
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    The thermal pad supplied with the heatsink didn't cover all the drive so I added a couple of extra bits for thoroughness. As we all know, thoroughness is next to anal-retentiveness godliness :eyebrow:
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    Next I installed the new Heatkiller CPU block using Kryonaut and plugged in the RAM.
    [​IMG]
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    That block is just :eeek::baby:

    I wasn't sure how the mobo would interfere with installing the 2 hardrives at the rear of the tray, so I put them in first. I used rubber dampening washers to lift them off the tray to make cable installation a little easier and the spinny disk got extra dampening on the main cavity side to cut down on noise.
    [​IMG]
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    Has worked really well as don't hear it at all.

    The ITX board looks a little lost in there for now, but it'll soon get filled up, don't worry :thumb:
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    Gave my 970 cheesecake, block and backplate a good clean and got new pads and a good dollop of paste on there. Maybe a little too much, but better than too little!
    [​IMG]
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    Had a bit of an oddity when putting some of the pads on the backplate. After taking off both protective backings, there seemed to be a second protective layer on one side which i had to splice off with a stanley knife.
    [​IMG]
    I checked the order and remembered that the only pads I could get at the time in the right thickness were ram pads, so it's probably a slippy layer to allow you to get heatsinks onto the ram. But ah well. :duh:

    All tightened up with the additional heatsinks I'd installed previously. Love the contrast of the copper screws against the black.
    [​IMG]

    Next up the Aquaero, while I won't be running the pumps off it for now and the waterblock is complete overkill, but it sure looks pretty. I'd still rather get as much contact between it and the heatsink cover you have to use on the Aquaero 6, so I installed thermal pads in the recesses and then put some Kryonaut paste across it all for a belt and braces approach.
    [​IMG]

    I'll be using the Alphacool Heatmaster II to power/control the pumps and LED strips, so got the block back on there and got them both in the case.
    [​IMG]
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    I wasn't keen on how far out the Aquaero poked out of the 5.25" bay. There are some spacers between the pcb and mounting arms, so thought I could just take them out to push it back a bit, but the left hand arm snags on what's probably the pins for the screen on the PRO/XT versions.
    [​IMG]
    As you can't really see on this really blurry photo :duh:

    A little bit of filing to remove a little of the arm soon sorted that out though :dremel: and while I was at it, i replaced the nuts and screws with button hex screws and hex dome nuts.
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    Perfect :thumb:
     
    Last edited: 8 Apr 2018
  16. The_Crapman

    The_Crapman Don't phone it's just for fun.

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    I noticed while cleaning the loops that the pumps were getting really hot sat directly on the shoggy sandwiches, so I wanted to elevate them up a bit and let them breath. I found these 3.5" drive mounts that were part of an Antec P182 I just happen to have lying around ( :worried: ) and they seemed perfect for the job. They'd even allow me to get some heatsinks under there.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    The trouble is I wanted to swap the faceplate out for the black one and those drive mounts wouldn't go at all, but a bit of electrical tape soon sorted that out. I also added a little noise dampening foam to try and reduce the noise a hard surface would introduce.
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    It's like they're not even there:rock:

    Like the hardrive, I installed some anti-vibration grommets to reduce any noise that might come from the rad and fans.
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    Came up with a neat way to keep the top rad in place while it got screwed in, which is normally a royal pita.

    And he looked, and he saw it was good.
    [​IMG]
    But not quite good enough. :nono:

    The rads still seemed a little dull and after watching Alex's modding vid on custom backplates, thought a little bit of Brasso might just be the trick.
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    Worked a treat on the copper fittings too, a couple of which were almost brown before.

    All nice and shiney now :thumb:
    [​IMG]

    The riser cable I've got is a rather cheap one that I'd had to wrap in foil to stop interference and it was a bit scratty and needed redoing. I wrapped it in electric tape too for a cleaner look and to avoid any shorts, which should probably have done previously.
    [​IMG]
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    Finally loop building time! This lot of fittings is just for the dual res, trying to work out the best combinations to get the angles i wanted.
    [​IMG]
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    Take me to your leader!:hehe:

    Loop Built
    [​IMG]

    Filled and leak testing
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    Now to tackle this mess
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    I had a really long cable tie from some toy packaging that I used to keep all the pump wires in check, along with a couple of bits of my trusty black tape
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    Not too bad considering they're all stock cables. :thumb:

    Time for the final pics! :clap:
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