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Case Mod - In Progress Project: Cold lava~A custom WC'ing project -1st Oct- The cursed log part 2

Discussion in 'Project Logs' started by Bad_cancer, 17 Dec 2009.

  1. Bad_cancer

    Bad_cancer Mauritius? 2nd speck east of africa

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    [​IMG]


    How this started

    So this all started with one little block of copper, it’s a long story but in short I wanted to try to make my own water-cooling block for my cpu with a little copper block I found one day.

    After some brainstorming and some help on another thread, we came up with this design:

    [​IMG]

    A high flow, pretty neat looking water block. :D

    Seeing as I have a friend who has a cnc at his workplace, getting the copper and acrylic cut should be reasonably easy.(and cheap)

    So I had to design a water-cooling loop to go with the block.
    That got me thinking…if I can wc my cpu, why not the cards too and make water blocks for those too? And maybe some overkill cooling and some case mods? And so project cold lava was born. My first real project.

    The only modding I have ever done before this was to put a couple of blowholes on my case and make a custom fan controller. So this is a BIG step up. (Bear with me if my finishing touches are not so good, im still learning…)

    So my idea is to have a real overkill system based on the premise of trying to keep the cpu and gpu cores as close to ambient as possible.

    Why cold lava? Well I’m going to be using orange coolant, hence the lava. And cold…well you get the idea. (Also I think it sounds kind of cool, but correct me if I’m wrong)


    The project starts

    And there we have it, so I started by taking the aforementioned case to bits:

    [​IMG]

    Yes I am keeping the color scheme, I love orange, so I’m going for black orange and white :clap:


    And the innards were unwittingly dumped on my table to wait for their new home to be built.

    [​IMG]

    Looks a mess right now but it will have to do.
    I don’t have mouthwatering parts, but I’m pretty happy with my setup, and it definitely suits my needs.



    Getting a Radiator

    So now that I had a goal, I had to get a radiator for my case. So I went about looking for something cheap that would be reasonably easy to mod. I was racking my brains and it hit me while I was following another project… an A/C heat exchanger!
    These should be great, especially because my neighbor works in air conditioning, he should have a spare he could let me have cheap right?


    And yes he did! For only 850Rs (20$) I walk away with this baby:

    [​IMG]

    It’s a bit bent but nothing some patience can’t cure, but it was never used, the pipes are still sealed!

    But it is a big one:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Much too big for my case.


    so we bring out a little friend to help out:

    [​IMG]

    It’s from my dad’s younger days (before all this power tools rubbish); you fit a hacksaw blade into it, really practical for those tight spots.


    And here we go:

    [​IMG]

    chop


    [​IMG]

    chop

    I didn’t take a picture (silly me) but I then removed about 10cm of fins off the bottom of the rad (that’s about 20fins or more) so that I can rehose it.

    That was fun, i had to pry a side of with a screwdriver and slowly using my hands i remove the main portion of the fin. if i used pliers, it would be much more hassle because the fins would break off in ever so small bits, whereas by hand, bigger chunks came off.

    So after changing my finger prints forever, my rad was basically ready, but it originally came with 2 places to screw it on down on each end, but seeing as I chopped this off, I needed to make a replacement.

    So I took some L bar that I had laying around and made this little bracket:

    [​IMG]

    This is a tough customer, I had smoke and blue shavings flying off even with lubricant applied, but finally managed to get it ready.


    And while I was doing that, I got visited by this:

    [​IMG]

    It looks like a mosquito, but this thing is actually bigger than my hand; just the body fits in the palm of my hand. :jawdrop:


    Don’t you love the tropics?


    Next up I wanted to put the radiator on the side of the case and to protect it from getting damaged, im using this:

    [​IMG]

    It’s not modder’s mesh, its speaker mesh. I really can’t say if this is better than modder’s mesh, because I have never used any of that, but this is thick!! About 2mm and it is pretty strong.

    It costs 15$ for a square that is 40cm x 40cm. Good stuff, but not so easy to find…

    And to stick it together I used this:

    [​IMG]

    It’s a slow curing epoxy, it takes about 10hrs to cure, but when it is done, it’s almost impossible to remove without some damage.

    And to hold it while curing some clamp pron:

    [​IMG]

    Please disregard the mess in the background :blush:

    Now having painted the bracket and the end of the rad (without taking pictures again), I fixed it to the side panel along with the mesh. I epoxied the mesh to the panel and used little plastic spacers to jack the rad up a bit. it sits roughly 5mm of the panel and there is space above for fans and whatnot :D

    Blurry pic alert!

    [​IMG]

    So now all that was left was rehosing the other end of the radiator that i had chopped off and i learned a valuable lesson while cutting the ends to length:
    If you are going to cut copper with a hacksaw, make sure you know what you are doing!
    This stuff is really a pain to cut. the teeth dig in, they bite too much and you end up inventing new ways to swear at inanimate objects. In the end i used a dremel cutting disc.

    But there was still the question of what to use to rehose the ends. i wanted something sturdy but reasonably easy to work with... the tubes in the rad are 1/4inch, which was a relief really. It made things that much easier.
    So at the usual shops i look for parts, i found this:

    [​IMG]

    Reinforced hose. It is strong, durable and it is armored against idiots. seems like the logical thing to try.
    So a few loops later and voila:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    it fits perfectly and is watertight without clips :clap:

    you may have noticed the weird arrangement of the tubes. That is because of the way the radiator works. It had two inputs and one output(or was it the other way round?) Anyway, this led to an awkward arrangement of the tubes, but this actually suited me perfectly because i needed two loops in the case. why 2 loops? thats for next time.

    Anyway i think this looks pretty neat :D
    But i noticed that the big loop on the end was a big long so:

    [​IMG]

    Ahh much better! :D

    Next up, overkill cooling systems. (i'll be posting that tomorrow!)

    So ill leave you guys with another of my favorites:

    [​IMG]

    Until next time!
     
    Last edited: 1 Oct 2010
  2. stonedsurd

    stonedsurd Is a cackling Yuletide Belgian

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    Great start! That radiator looks like it'll need some SERIOUS fans to push air through it.
     
  3. Bad_cancer

    Bad_cancer Mauritius? 2nd speck east of africa

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    Fast..
    Thank you :D.
    In fact i tested this with fans and it blows through reasonably well even with a cheap fan.
    It looks pretty tight but there is reasonable airflow.

    Anyway, it is so big that it doesn't need much help :D
     
  4. Bad_cancer

    Bad_cancer Mauritius? 2nd speck east of africa

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    Overkill cooling.

    So here is another part of what i have been working on for this project :

    Overkill cooling

    As I said I’m happy with my system, BUT….what’s wrong with getting a little more bang for buck huh? :D

    Thus an important part of this project is keeping the pc as close to ambient as possible while overclocking (specially seeing as I run a q9550 which is hot chip and I have 2x9800gts which while not the hottest, still get quite hot.)

    So I’m going to need a bit more brute strength to keep these babies cool.

    To do this I have enlisted the help of some controversial parts: peltiers coolers.

    What spells overkill cooling better than peltier blocks? They are inefficient, hard to handle and they are cool. (Figuratively and literally) What better challenge? :D
    Now some may question the use of peltiers in with this big rad, but hey overkill is fun! :clap:

    I picked a couple of coolers off of ebay for reasonably cheap (can’t remember the price)
    They came in a pack of two, both rated at 136.8watts. That measures up to 11.4amps each.

    That meant I needed a power supply of at least 23amps capacity or more. My first thought was to go for a dedicated power supply. Very expensive stuff! They come it at 100$ minimum. That’s a bit too much for me.

    Being the creative spirit that I am I started thinking about what I could use.
    Maybe a power supply? I looked around in the my junk pile and found this:

    [​IMG]

    A bog-standard cheapo psu.
    What is the rating on the 12v?

    [​IMG]

    Look at that! 25amps. Puurfect.

    Time to look inside….

    [​IMG]

    Nothing special…but seems ok to get the job done.
    I had to chop up the power supply anyway to get to testing but I got a little carried away:

    [​IMG]

    Yes I cut a 120mm blow hole in the top of the psu before even getting to testing.

    [​IMG]

    But hey it’s a nice hole right? :worried:

    Anyway, I started chopping the wires up and removing those I didn’t need. So I kept 7 black wires all six yellow wires and the green wire.

    [​IMG]

    The rest went bye bye.

    [​IMG]

    Now was time to get testing to see if this psu would do the job. So linked a black and a green, hooked her up and put a 120 fan on top.

    [​IMG]

    Nothing like a tidy testing bench huh? That’s a battery charger for the 120fan and the peltier is attached to a random heat sink I found laying around.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    I don’t know about its cooling properties but boy did it heat that heat sink up! I had to keep 4fans on it to keep it from saturating the heat sink’s capacity in under 2minutes! But it also gets pretty cold before it saturates the heat sink and starts to heat itself up. Got a burnt finger because of that (cold burn btw).
    Hooked up both peltiers and the psu didn’t even break a sweat with the big fan on it. So she was good to go…time to make it look a bit better. :D


    So first out with the 80mm fan and I cut off the entire back face and replaced it with some speaker mesh.

    [​IMG]

    Next up was a fan to cool this little blighter. To stick to the theme, I replaced all the multi-colored leds with white ones.
    Now I wanted to be able to control the fan independently from the leds so I rewired everything so as to have the leds on all the time. I wired them with in pairs and tucked the resistors under the fan:

    [​IMG]

    So now I can have the cool lighting even if the fan is off. :clap:

    [​IMG]

    Not too shabby I must say.


    Now to transmit the 25amps of power to the peltiers without melting the connectors I used co-ax connectors. I wanted to be able to unplug the peltiers easily if need be. they are are solid metal so should do just fine.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    I will correct the paint later on :blush:


    Now was time for some bling. I wanted an activity light to show when the psu was on. So I made this little piece of plastic and painted a little design on it:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Behind that are 4 leds that I cut down and filed to the limit to make them as short as possible. And here we go:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    And with the psu on these two come on.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    :D

    Next I just routed the wires outside through the mesh ready to be sleeved. And voila:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    There you have it!
    Peltier power supply :D

    Thats all for now.
    Until next time!
     
    Last edited: 5 Jan 2010
  5. Von Lazuli

    Von Lazuli I get by fine with a jig-saw.

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    Now this is a cool one. I like how everything is coming together. That Radiator looks very familiar too...
     
  6. Bad_cancer

    Bad_cancer Mauritius? 2nd speck east of africa

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    Thank you!
    Yes I seem to recall leaving a comment about your rad if I'm not mistaken, but it was actually on someone else's log that I saw it first. :D

    I like your project too btw! :D
     
    t1alek likes this.
  7. _carnivale

    _carnivale New Member

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    I am definitely interested in this. Subbed as soon as I can figure out how to.
     
  8. Cheapskate

    Cheapskate Insane? or just stupid?

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    Lots of hardcore modding here.:D I like that. It was a good idea to replace that psu fan. I hate those things. If they get too cold, they start roaring like the bearing is shot. (-not a problem where you are at...but they just don't last very long.)
     
  9. bigsharn

    bigsharn Officially demotivated

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    Top of the page, Thread tools>Subscribe to this thread

    I accidentally hit that button
     
  10. t1alek

    t1alek Mind modder.

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    This is awesome. You have a rad that could probably cool it passively, but still goes for peltiers, what's not to love ?
    + rep :D
     
  11. BlackWhizz

    BlackWhizz New Member

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    Nice work!

    I hope that those RCA's can handle the amps. Because those are normally used to transfer video and audio signals. A little safer will be banana plugs or something like that.
     
  12. woody_294

    woody_294 Wizard Ninja :P

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    Mad scientist? This is a doc brown classic :D
     
  13. Bad_cancer

    Bad_cancer Mauritius? 2nd speck east of africa

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    Thank you!

    Thanks a lot! I basically wanted to have a bigger fan to keep the innards cool, seeing as i was going to use 22 out of the 25amps (And its also for looks...)
    I really had no idea those fans made noise when it got cold. (undersandable seeing as the ultimate coldest i ever experienced here was 12c)

    LOL! Thank you!:D

    Thanks! :D Like i said, overkill is fun:thumb:

    Thanks! I actually tested the peltiers on RCA plugs and they didn't warm up. These ones a much thicker Co-AX plugs. so it is probably okay. but i will do some more testing to see if i should change to something else. Thanks for the tip. :thumb:

    Thanks! ill let you know if space-time ripples appear when i turn it on! :clap:

    :edit:

    On a further note, seeing as its Christmas and new year and stuff, i am going to have a slowdown in modding till next year i guess. i'll still be at it, but it is going to be a while before a real update :(
     
    Last edited: 20 Dec 2009
    AnG3L likes this.
  14. AnG3L

    AnG3L Ultimate Modder

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    My friend you did it!!! Awesome start mate and I ll be watching you!! :) Subbed and +rep for the orange madness!!! :)
     
  15. Bad_cancer

    Bad_cancer Mauritius? 2nd speck east of africa

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    haha yes i took the leap. and yes i love orange :D so orange madness it is! :thumb:
    thanks a lot mate!
     
  16. Bad_cancer

    Bad_cancer Mauritius? 2nd speck east of africa

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    Hi everyone ! I hope you had great holidays !
    So im back with a smallish update, here goes:

    Finishing the radiator.

    Now that the radiator was in place with its mesh, it was time to put the fans on.
    Now I wanted to do the same as I did with the power supply fans: To have white lighting that would be always on and to have an independent control for the fans.
    So I connected the Leds in pairs, 2 pairs per fan. So that is four wires per fan, with 4 fans that 16 wires!

    I then attached the fans onto the mesh pulling air out. Add some cable straps and we have:

    [​IMG]

    And as you can see, the wires make quite a mess.

    [​IMG]

    Time to fix that with some overkill wires!

    [​IMG]

    Yes the cables are overly large for this use, but that’s all I had laying around that day.
    Hmm, still a bit messy… (yes the background too but disregard that):blush:

    [​IMG]

    Ahh that’s better! :D
    And all done:

    [​IMG]

    As you probably noticed, I put some U-channel on the edges and used some plastic to make side covers for the fans.
    Let’s see what it looks like when its on:

    Semi dark photo:

    [​IMG]

    Dark photo:

    [​IMG]

    And some camera fun:

    [​IMG]

    :D

    That’s all for now!
    Until next time!
     
  17. AnG3L

    AnG3L Ultimate Modder

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    Really nice rad buddy! It looks very kickass I love the light effect with the mesh! :) Mod on!
     
  18. Combatus

    Combatus Bit-tech Modding + hardware reviews Staff Super Moderator

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    Agreed that rad looks awesome!
     
  19. Bad_cancer

    Bad_cancer Mauritius? 2nd speck east of africa

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    Thanks! I must say that am i pretty pleased with the effect of the lights, but really the pics don't do it justice. It looks better in person! And now that the end of year chaos is over, i can get back to 'modding on'. :thumb:


    Thank you! I love the way your res came out! :D
     
  20. Achron

    Achron Cad Pro Quo

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    The rad looks so sleep and mystefying in the dark...must...look...away...
     
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