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Project "Got Milk?" UPDATE 23/12 Finnished just in time for Christmas

Discussion in 'Project Logs' started by Constructacon, 31 Oct 2004.

  1. Constructacon

    Constructacon Constructing since 1978

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    Time for a small update. Modding progesses slowly. However, this weekend is planned for some major construction work.

    I have completed repairing the nasty cut in the mobo tray. Like Thomas Eddison, I have found many ways which don't work while trying to repair this. The concept I had in mind was to attatch a small piece of metal accross the back of the cut to strengthen the join and then fill to make it smooth. But how to attatch it?? I found that metal cement is just too fragile; hot glue cools to quick on cold metal; solder again for the same reasons. Here's what I found did work....

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    Again using the idea of the bracing for strength, I pop riveted the 2 pieces together. A good smear of bog and a sand back. The rivets do sit proud of the original mobo tray but by bogging such a large area I was able to make such a shallow gradiant (something like 1:20) that you wouldn't even know it was there unless I told you (oops. Don't tell anyone else).

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    The tray was sanded and painted several times until the desired finish was achieved. From memory I used 80, 200, 800, 1200 grit to get the edges feathered smooth enough for my liking.

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    All painted lovely and milky and screwed into place.

    I have cut out one wall for the case so far and done a test paint job on what I was thinking of in the begining for the case colour scheme. I have painted the inside face first white, then black. This gives a perfect finish on the outside. A high glossy milky finish.

    NB: The following pictures are of my first piece. I need to clean up some of the extra masking tape and residue off the face and they don't look as good as they will in the end.

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    White side

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    Inside. You can see were the paint decided to craze for some reason. I'm not crazy about this (very punny) effect. A light sand took care of most of it but for some reason this photo brings out the very worst of it. It doesn't look anywhere near this bad IRL.

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    This is the piece held in place with a trusty video. I intend to hot glue them in place in the end. This is the look I was first going for when I thought of the whole "Milk" theme. This is the right hand side of the case. The hole at the top will be left open (and it's partner in crime on the opposite face) for ease of carrying (well they are handle holes after all) to LAN parties etc.

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    And what it will look like from the inside (see - you can't really see the crazing).

    The most difficult part of progressing to the next stage of this case is cutting out all the walls by hand..... It takes a very long time.

    Comments time. What do you think of the colour scheme I've gone for? On first look I wasn't overly happy with it but I think it's bang on for the theme. Do you have any other suggestions I could try (don't forget, it's Dec 16 and I give it to my brother on Dec 23 - early Christmas with family).
     
  2. ouija

    ouija Trust me, I am doctor!

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    Either use a stanley knife to score the plexi and snap it on the edge of a bench, or sandwich the piece between two planks of wood and cut through the whole lot.
     
  3. greywolf

    greywolf What's a Dremel?

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    I didn't know you had to be done on the 23rd! I'll have to ramp-up on Pinky2 to beat that date!

    How thick is your plexi? I've heard the scoring and snapping method works well up to 1/8" (3mm). Be sure you snap it across a straight edge. Other wise I would suggest a hacksaw, I use that exclusively.

    Looking very good so far. Glad to see you've made some progress. Are you going to sleeve the PSU in milky goodness?
     
  4. Constructacon

    Constructacon Constructing since 1978

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    The acrylic used is 3mm. I'll have to try the score and snap method. I had no plans colouring the sleeving. As the colour scheme is largely black (or derivative of) and white it fits quite well. I'm thinking this case may be done for Christmas like Pinky2 was completed for the Sims 2 release :blush:.

    My brother's birthday is in February. As this is also his birthday present due to fundage, time and effort put in, dare I consider a fallback deadline? I don't want to and this weekend will see a real effort on my part.

    Any comment on the white wall(s)?
     
  5. TheDon

    TheDon What's a Dremel?

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    I like the white walls. It gives a sorta drink me feeling.
     
  6. greywolf

    greywolf What's a Dremel?

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    Yea I know were your coming from, good you have a fall-back date. Pinky2girl's birthday was the 4th of December...I missed that too :sigh:.

    I really like the white, pulls the project together, your not trying to hide that it's a milk crate...it's a feature!
     
  7. Constructacon

    Constructacon Constructing since 1978

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    Christmas is fast approaching and I'm running out of time. I've just spent the whole weekend working on this - about 12 hours straight each day. This is where we stand now.....

    Special thanks go out to ouija at this point for emphasising the score and snap method of cutting acrylic.

    [​IMG]
    This is my new best friend. I got him from Bunnings for about $6. It just rips the hell out acryilic sheeting. It took me about a minute and a half to make a cut it used to take me about 30 minutes to cut by hand. The end result is 100 times better too; the edge was perfect, not needing to be filed, sanded or melted.

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    To allow the PSU to breathe I'm putting a mesh window on the left side next to the handle hole. I've cut a rebate around the edge to allow the mesh to be recessed. The plan is to sandwich the mesh in between the crate and the acrylic wall giving a nice edge around the hole from each side.

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    Here's all the walls, nice and milky ready for the next stage.

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    For the vent I only needed a peice roughly 100mm square. I had to purchase a whole sheet (1200x1200) from the manufacturer though. You can see how small a peice I actually needed in the top corner. (PS. Anyone need mesh in the Brisbane area PM me)

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    Like the rest of the walls, the mesh is painted 2 tone. White on the outside...

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    ...black on the inside.

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    I also bi-coloured the mesh that will go in the front of the crate. I already had a roll of this mesh but unfortunately it was too narrow for the vent mentioned above.

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    I've installed the power (silver vandal proof) and reset (black) buttons.

    The bulk of my day was spent making the controller circuit for the power/activity LEDs. Thankfully it worked almost properly second time around (I realised quickly that I had soldered on end of the diode in the wrong place).

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    The circuit board completed. The 2 jumpers on the right hand end are for the activity inputs from the HDD and the CD ROM mod.

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    Always use the correct resistor to prolong the life of your LEDs.

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    The completed controller box with molex power input. Blue LEDs on the green wire (no blue wires) and red on the red.

    You'll have to wait for the next update for the money shot of the lighting as the paint is still drying on one of the components to be used.

    I'm currently having difficulties attaching the sheet of acrylic with hot glue (it just peels off) so tomorrow I'm off to find some uber cool looking nuts and bolts to hold them in place.

    I've had to put a hole in the PSU shelf (Design as you go dramas) as the wires won't reach anywhere and the holesaw I used blunted after 30 seconds and barely scratched the metal - It's tough stuff.

    I only have to make the lid and do some assembly work and I should be pretty well done. Having said that the tasks ahead aren't that easy.

    More updates in the next day or so.
     
  8. Protius-X

    Protius-X What's a Dremel?

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    This is going great so far, keep up the awesome work.
     
  9. The Lost Monk

    The Lost Monk What's a Dremel?

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    this is very intresting keep it up.
     
  10. greywolf

    greywolf What's a Dremel?

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    Owww, you did good. I'm impressed. Looks like your going to make it! I REALLY need to get busy :eeek:.

    It's all coming together very nicely, I like what you've done. Awesome tool for the plexi, glad the score-n-snap worked out for you, I'll have to look into that for the future.

    Tell us more about the controller circuit, I need something for my HD indicator...please.

    Your looking strong to win this race, I've lagged a bit behind.
     
  11. RotoSequence

    RotoSequence Lazy Lurker

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    Spiffy crate PC. :D

    1500 posts! :clap:
     
  12. Constructacon

    Constructacon Constructing since 1978

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    Thanks go to bit and Macroman for this circuit. Basically it switches between 2 sets of LEDs depending on a line input ie when you have drive activity it turns off one set of LEDs and turns on the other set to indicate drive activity. It's great for having (for example) a lit power button which also acts as your HDD activity monitor. I have modified this circuit slightly by chopping out most of the strands and only having 1 of each colour. I have also included a second input so that either HDD activity OR the CD will trigger the lights.

    Congratulations Roto. Thanks for the feedback.

    Well I've just got home from work. I'd better get stuck into it. I hope (fingers crossed) to complete this tonight. More later.
     
  13. automagsrock

    automagsrock What's a Dremel?

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    Every few days I take a look at this and I am more amazed with every view. Good work and keep it up!! :thumb:
     
  14. Constructacon

    Constructacon Constructing since 1978

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    This week has been a mad dash to the finish line. and I just scraped it in. I've spent approx 5-6 hours a night since Sunday (now Wednesday night) working on this to complete it. Needless to say I've been functioning on autopilot at work this week due to lack of sleep.

    Before going any further I must say Murphy was a b*stard for inventing his law. Anything and Everything (it deserves the capital) has gone wrong in the past few days. In the list of breakages I've had are a wire snapping off an LED fan (fixed), ditto for POST speaker (fixed) and the floor in the garage is littered with the shattered remains of countless piecess of acrylic. The one thing I have learned is that acrylic will always shatter on the last piece of work you do to it (drill etc).

    While trying to stick the loverly milky acryilic walls in I discovered that hot glue will not stick to high glossy (ie smooth) surfaces.

    [​IMG]
    A trip to the local nut and bolt shop surfaced these babies. They're an M5 bolt with an allen key socket in the head. I bought about 50 for this case. It was then a simple matter of drilling and bolting the walls into place.

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    I had to make a rack for the CD drive to hang from underneath the shelf the PSU sits on in the front of the case. I took this one from a donor case....
    [​IMG]
    ...and turned it into this. The reason for the differences in the mounts is to allow the cable from the PSU to come down through the shelf (right) and for the HDD rack (left). The rack was then pop riveted to the shelf.

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    As I didn't have an old hard drive lying around, I used this dead 3.5" floppy drive to fill in (as it's the same size) in the mock-up.

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    In possition and also pop rivetted in place.

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    PSU shelf bolted into position

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    This is a cable I had to make for the lighting system. One end connects to the mobo (for HDD activity) the other goes to the jumper in the circiut box. Again, nothing hardwired in this case - all disconnectable.

    [​IMG]
    If anyone is looking for a way to manage cables in their cases, I suggest using these (this is 2). They are self adhesive cable tie mounts. Just stick them to whatever surface you want and then zippy tie your cables to the mounting point They are very low profile and tiny to boot. I suppose there's no reason why they couldn't be painted. (BTW- I am not trying to plug RS, it just happened to be sitting next to me and it's a better surface than carpet to photograph on.)

    [​IMG]
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    By putting the PSU in the front of the I had to turn it upside down. Unforturnately there was not way to secure it without filling it with metal filings other than double sided tape. After this was done these zippy ties were tightened and trimmed down to size.

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    Next on the agenda was a lid for the case. Clear acrlyic chopped down to size [singing](score and snap, score and snap)[/singing]. Fan and bolt holes cut prior to painting to give a better finish.

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    All painted with 2 x LED exhaust fans in place. I decided to go with the black rather than the white as I felt white would have just been too overwhelming. It also looks cooler :D

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    Some cable management for the fans. Power and molex leads sleaved and secured in location.

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    Check out the mirror finish on that. What you are looking at there is a rave poster on my wood panneled wall reflected in the lid. w00t!

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    To steath the CD I made up a faceplate out of 2 peices of acrylic bolted together. The back clear piece has power/drive activity LEDs embeded in it to give "glowy goodness". I went through about 4 versions trying to find one I liked - that's not counting all the duplicate shattered ones either.

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    Here's what the faceplate looks like in the dark. The blue changes to red when either the HDD or CD is being accessed. You can also see light from the fans bleeding through the front mesh. Nice.

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    Left hand side with PSU vent.

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    And a bad picture of the fans.

    Here are a few pictures I took this morning in the final mock up (internals weren't complete) but it's how it looks now.
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    [​IMG]

    Technically it's complete. On the final assembly though one of the legs broke off one of the red LEDs (D'oh!). As I have to present this to my brother tonight at our family Christmas party I'll leave it until after to fix. As he doesn't have the PC goods to go in it yet this won't be a problem. I'll also try to do a pimp photo shoot of the completed case in daylight.

    I appologize for any inelloquence in this log today as it's 3AM and I'm about to go to bed. I have to be up in 3 hours to go to work.

    Merry Christmas Nathaniel.

    ~Conrad.
     
  15. Badaró

    Badaró What's a Dremel?

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    I'm glad to be the first to say that:

    Nice job!

    Very original, I like it a lot! Congratulations :thumb:
     
  16. taliban_raider

    taliban_raider Just some guy; you know

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    Nice Work :thumb:

    Its a bitch when legs and wires snap off things :wallbash:
     
  17. TheDon

    TheDon What's a Dremel?

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    Very Nice.. I like the finished product.
     
  18. greywolf

    greywolf What's a Dremel?

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    What an excellent job. Your brother better be super happy! Wow, this turned out better than I imagined. I love the steathed CD drive with the multi-functional LED lights. All that hard work really paid off. Great job!

    And your the WINNER of our little competition! First to post thier finished case wins! Did we ever discuss prizes :eyebrow:?

    Get some sleep and relish the surprise and amazement in your brothers expression when he opens his present. Merry Christmas!

    -greywolf
     
  19. Burke

    Burke What's a Dremel?

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    That is stellar. Turned out really nice...Im sure he'll be really stocked on it.
     
  20. BaDDaSS

    BaDDaSS What's a Dremel?

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    Now that's original! :D
     

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