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Project: Lament II - Hell's Illusion... FINISHED

Discussion in 'Project Logs' started by ARTbyTROY, 7 Jul 2006.

  1. ARTbyTROY

    ARTbyTROY Mod it Til it Bleeds!

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    I am going to put a HellRaiser puzzle box into a PC and hopefully entirely conceal the computer in the process. Dining rooms are over rated... so it continues, my HellRaiser sequel mod.

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    My mods run in two's so doing a sequel to my first HellRaisermod makes sense for more reasons than one. My MOBY cases were just that, cases... modded to beat hell, but they were store bought. My Project Lament: HellRaiser Cenobite PC would be considered a "found object" mod, one where the hardware was installed into an existing housing, though I did mod the mannequin like mad. Which all leads up to the highest level of modding, where the case is designed from the ground up and built entirely from scratch... that is this mod.

    The Puzzle Box Shop came through for me with some discontinued 2 inch hellraiser box panels and instead of the two sets of box panels I requested they sent three, giving extra chances at building the box correctly. Also pictured below is a 12"x10' roll of cherry red chrome mirror metallized vinyl, it is an adhesvie coated metallized PVC film, above it is a 12"x10' roll of Red Multiple Fresnel Lens Metallic Vinyl which will not be used in the mod. Last but not least are a couple of cans of black vinyl dye, it will be an important part of the external illusion.

    http://www.casemodgod.com/Illusion08m.jpg

    Below is an early layout design sketch, the placement of parts has changed a bit since I drew it, but you can see that it measured 250mm (or roughly 10") on each side of the cube... too big for my liking.

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    I decided that the biggest design problem was the technique I was using and hand sketching this mod was not going to cut it, having heard good things about the program Sketchup I downloaded their 30 day trial and started watching the tutotials. It only took an hour or so to get up to speed and I set to redesigning the whole thing with making it smaller in mind.

    Sketchup, wow that's good stuff. I have never really used any type of design software before but I know it's not supposed to be this easy. I wound up shaving nearly two inches off each side as a result of using the software, here is my "almost" final 8"x8" design sketchup for the mod.

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    Below is the view from the other side, the Sketchup designs merely show component placement, the fun part will be connecting it all together... but I have a plan.

    http://www.casemodgod.com/sidemockrearhdd1.jpg

    Now measuring around 8"x8" it will house two hard drives, a CDRW/DVD drive, a 6" LCD monitor, Matrix Orbital, two 60mm fans, the Mainboard, a TV tuner plus the lighting, illusion and more... much better.
     
    Last edited: 5 Feb 2007
  2. ARTbyTROY

    ARTbyTROY Mod it Til it Bleeds!

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    Enough with the planning, let the modding begin... since this mod is being built from the inside out I have to start with the 1/2 wooden cube because it is the innermost part of this mod. The first thing I did was fix the rough cut that using the hand miter box made on the wooden cube, the table disk sander made short work of it.

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    Next up a couple of coats of black enamel spray paint, nothing fancy as it will mostly all be covered up in the next part...

    http://www.casemodgod.com/modules/Illusion20m.jpg

    It was a really good thing that The Puzzle Box Shop sent me three sets of panels because I wasted a bunch by trying to get the cut exact before I figured out that I was cutting the wrong panel in half. Below is the finished 1/2 puzzle box with the corrected panel placement.

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    Funny how things work out, I built a computer for a guy that just happens to own a laser cutter/engraver... he did me a solid and cut out the panels for the illusion section. Below also shows the 1/2 puzzle box atop the freshly cut 2-way mirror, it really looks like a full cube and is nearly seamless.

    http://www.casemodgod.com/modules/Illusion25m.jpg

    I concentrated on the side panels for the illusion section, since they will sit flush with the mirror it was necessary to find a pattern that was absolutely symmetrical. Once I finally found and Photoshopped the image I printed it out at high res onto some photo paper and cut it out with an X-Acto knife. I took the triangle pieces of laser cut acrylic and scuffed one side of them with 800 grit sandpaper so that the spray adhesive would have something to make proper contact with and applied the printed images. I then clamped both sides together to make sure that everything would adhere properly.

    http://www.casemodgod.com/Illusion26m.jpg

    "Angel to some, demon to others"... MC Escher is awesome, serious props (even though it took an assload of image editing to make it look right), the below picture shows the two finished sides with a blow up of the original image in the middle. The Escher image just seemed to fit the theme and it also tied in with the illusion aspect of the mod, so win all around.

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    I had to add a layer of varnish to the puzzle box to keep the images from smearing, before I did though I tested it out on a practice piece... it worked well.

    http://www.casemodgod.com/Illusion28m.jpg

    I set up my drill press and added a hole to the back of the puzzle box so that it can be screwed onto the mirror panel.

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    Below is the test fit of the acrylic panels, I used wood cubes to hold everything in place while I eyeballed it.

    http://www.casemodgod.com/Illusion30m.jpg

    Once it all lined up I taped the panels together and also taped down the wood blocks on the inside edge to help hold everything together. The edges of the mirror panel were sanded with 80grit as was the connecting edge of each side, I also drilled a hole for the cube in the center of the mirror panel.

    http://www.casemodgod.com/Illusion31m.jpg

    I ran a thin bead of Weld-On 16 across the edges and attached the side panels, clamped the whole shebang together until it set up and moved onto this next part...

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    The bottom panel of the illusion section is carefully covered in the red chrome vinyl stock, care was taken while applying the film so that it lined up well with no trapped air bubbles.

    http://www.casemodgod.com/Illusion33m.jpg

    The bottom section was attached and below shows the completed illusion section of the mod, I still have a tiny bit of deatil work to do to it but for the most part it is done.

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    And finally another shot from a different angle, I like how the box is reflected inside on the red mirror chrome and that it came out measuring exactly to spec... the hard stuff is out of the way, now all that's left is to build the PC around it.

    http://www.casemodgod.com/Illusion35m.jpg
     
  3. ARTbyTROY

    ARTbyTROY Mod it Til it Bleeds!

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    I totally re-did the Sketchup design to remedy the niggling bits that bothered me... like the fact that I made no allowance for the thickness of the Alum-Angle that will be used for the frame work (stupid Sketchup noob).

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    I set up my compound miter saw and using a 200 tooth blade cut some Alum-Angle pieces for the bottom framework...

    http://www.casemodgod.com/Illusion36m.jpg

    Below is the test fit of the bottom brace pieces, the adjoining edges will need to be sanded up a bit, but it all lines up really well so far. I put a dollar bill inside the bottom frame to show a size comparison, this mod is not going to be very big...

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    I made the top section of the mod, it is exactly the same as the bottom section...

    http://www.casemodgod.com/Illusion38m.jpg

    I also cut the side edge pieces for the mod, the thinner pieces of Alum-Angle will sit to the inside and the thicker pieces will be the outer corner edges of the sides.

    http://www.casemodgod.com/Illusion39m.jpg

    Here I am test fitting all the cut pieces together, I used wood cubes to hold the side inner braces in place and taped it all together.

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    All the parts together that make up the main framing of the case, it is exactly 200mm x 200mm cubed...

    http://www.casemodgod.com/Illusion41m.jpg

    Below is the fit together frame with the illusion section set up inside it... looking pretty sweet so far, but there is still much to do. Below is a gratuitous parting shot of the test fit mock-up...

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    The 12" subwoofer speaker grill has been sitting inside my mod closet for a while, I ordered it from All Electronics Corp. some time ago and did not have a mod in mind for it... until now.

    http://www.casemodgod.com/Illusion44m.jpg

    I used a nibbler to cut it to shape and then used a hammer to flatten the corner edges, it fits really nicely beneath the bottom frame.

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    I also did a little fine tuning to the pieces that make up the top and bottom sections, I hit them all on the disk sander so that they are all exactly the same size, I also sanded down the edges of the bottom grill section. Below is the second test fit...

    http://www.casemodgod.com/Illusion46m.jpg

    Here is the illusion section set up next to the final test fit frame section, I have to hit the hardware store for some wider Alum-Angle tomorrow so I can start placing the hardware.

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  4. ARTbyTROY

    ARTbyTROY Mod it Til it Bleeds!

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    After making the bottom of the case I decided to work on figuring how best to mount the motherboard, then I remembered the sheet of scrap carbon fiber that my brother had given me.

    http://www.casemodgod.com/Illusion48m.jpg

    I measured and cut the carbon fiber to fit snugly within the inside edges of the cube, below is the test fit of the motherboard tray.

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    Here it is from the inside, the carbon fiber only looks good on one side and that side faces the outside...

    http://www.casemodgod.com/Illusion50m.jpg

    Below is a test fit of the motherboard within the cube, it fits real nice...

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    While the MB was in I also popped in the TV tuner card and marked the case material to be removed to make room for it, so far things are falling into place really good.

    http://www.casemodgod.com/Illusion52m.jpg

    Speaking of things falling into place, take a good look at the picture below because it is a fluke... it was not measured for or planned into the mod and I only put it in to find placement for the MB, but the rear panel cut-out fits perfectly within the side panel of the mod. Since it fits so nicely I have decided to use it, this may or may not affect placement of the CDRW/DVD drive... but I don't care, it's an omen.

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    I masked off the shiny side of the carbon fiber and the mother board screw positions were marked onto the carbon fiber using a silver Sharpie marker. I drilled the holes using a 13/64 bit... why 13/64 you ask?

    http://www.casemodgod.com/Illusion54m.jpg

    Because 13/64 is the diameter needed to allow an aluminum binding post to pass through. After days of thinking I finally decided the best way to mount the mother board to the tray would be to use the posts mainly because they are as thin as a single layer of Alum-Angle. Below shows the aluminum binding posts (of which I only need the female half), four filister screws and eight rubber grommets.

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    Here is the mother board installed onto the freshly made tray, it was placed into the case for a test fit and everything almost lines up. The screw in the lower left sits smack on top of an aluminum support that will have to be notched out, but I knew that before I even cut the carbon fiber so no big deal.

    http://www.casemodgod.com/Illusion55m.jpg

    Below is a close-up of the mounting method, it is not set in stone and I have another idea I plan to test using nylon washers with the rubber grommets, but for now it is good enough.

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    The backside of the mother board tray was pretty nasty looking, nothing that a couple coats of vinyl dye couldn't cure. The vinyl dye does double duty by preventing any light from shining back into the mod.

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    Below shows the back sides of the aluminum binding posts on the MB tray, I also made a notch at the top of the carbon fiber panel so that lighting can be wired into the back.

    http://www.casemodgod.com/Illusion59m.jpg

    A shot of the finished vinyl dyed mother board tray with the binding posts, rubber grommets and filister screws.

    http://www.casemodgod.com/Illusion60m.jpg
     
  5. ARTbyTROY

    ARTbyTROY Mod it Til it Bleeds!

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    I worked on the project for a few hours today, hands on assembly revealed a design flaw and the side mounted HDD now sits vertically as a result... this also affected the placement of the fans since there is no longer room on the side to mount them with the hard drive positioned this way. The illusion section sits above the HDD with the MB tray showing in the back.

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    Below shows the hard drive in its new position and the motherboard plate, I placed the illusion section inside the mod to get a feel for the parts placement.

    http://www.casemodgod.com/Illusion62m.jpg

    Money shot... the slim line CDRW/DVD drive that is sitting atop the mod in the picture below will actually be mounted in its new location just above the illusion section and below the Alum-Angle front edge.

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    This is the side where the 6" LCD and Matrix Orbital will be located, designing the Alum-Angle framework for this mod is not easy, it is a puzzle in itself and the pieces being fit together do not exist until I make them... I am not complaining as I enjoy the challenge.

    http://www.casemodgod.com/Illusion64m.jpg

    A shot of the backside showing the position of the MB tray, the top notch will be used to wire lighting behind the mother board tray. So far this whole thing is being held together entirely by Duct tape, I bought some J-B Quick and will set to removing the tape and making it all permanent as soon as I am done marking and cutting the Alum pieces that need it.

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    Below is just to show positioning, the CDRW/DVD drive and 60mm fans will be positioned exactly below their current placement, moving the fans fron the side to the top makes better sense anyway since they will be located where they can best remove heat from the side HDD and 6" LCD.

    http://www.casemodgod.com/Illusion66m.jpg

    I will be building a cube framework around the illusion section that will also house the CDRW/DVD drive, it will need to be removeable in one piece to allow access to the mother board and rear of the 6" LCD... as always, I have a plan. I also need to frame out the 6" LCD/Matrix Orbital side with some Alum-Angle and figure out final positioning.

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    I decided to make a tray for the drive, my first design involved J-B Welding stuff onto the drive and I might want to upgrade to a slim slot load DVD burner later so that wouldn't work. Below are the cut pieces of Alum-Angle for the tray, I also cut a piece of some plastic mesh I had laying around for the middle section to allow air in and also because it looks neat.

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    The connecting edges of the Alum-Angle CD tray were coarse sanded and cleaned with laquer thinner, the J-B Quick was mixed and applied to hold it all together.

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    J-B quick is freaking awesome, strong stuff and building the CD tray with it was the true test for the rest. Hand pressure is enough to make the J-B hold, no need for clamps and it is set in four minutes.

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    Below is the finished CD tray duct taped into place within the mod, everything lines up and fits perfectly.

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    And finally a test fit of the drive, it fits sweet. Designing the CD tray has been a three day ordeal consisting of a lot of head scratching, parts cutting and rethinking, I'm glad it's over.

    http://www.casemodgod.com/Illusion75m.jpg
     
  6. ARTbyTROY

    ARTbyTROY Mod it Til it Bleeds!

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    With the CD-ROM tray finished it is off to another side of the cube, this time we will concentrate on the LCD and Matrix Orbital side, figuring out how to mount these components was a lot easier that the slim CDRD/DVD, below shows the test fit.

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    The parts fit to size and ready for some J-B Quick...

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    Here is the final design for the mounting of the 6" LCD screen, I used thumbscrews because they fit in and look killer.

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    The thumbscrews fit into some shiny steel standoffs that have had the screw section removed with the Dremel. There is still a small amount of cutting to do but I plan to J-B the whole shebang together by the end of this week.

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    Below is a picture showing one of the banks that this mod is based on sitting atop the mod in progress. Notice how tightly the illusion section fits in beneath the CD-ROM tray, when I am completely finished I will take some pictures to highlight the extremely close tolerances within the case.

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    Below shows the final test fit of the parts ready for install. The deisgn has been simplified and any Alum-Angle pieces that do not absolutely have to be attached to the frame have been removed to allow easier parts access... it all fits toight like a toiger.

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    I made a cut-out for the TV tuner card, not the cleanest cuts ever but I plan to do some filing to the whole thing before I J-B weld it together...

    http://www.casemodgod.com/Illusion83m.jpg

    The picture below shows the LCD positioned and ready for final install, it also shows the two 60mm fans placed below the CD ROM tray awaitng some form of mounting method.

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    The following picture more clearly shows the fan placement, but still not mounted... http://www.casemodgod.com/Illusion85m.jpg

    So, here is what I came up with... http://www.casemodgod.com/Illusion86m.jpg

    And the view from the other side... http://www.casemodgod.com/Illusion87m.jpg

    Here they are as they will sit when finished, the cut-outs for the fans are not perfect but I will fix that before the final install, for now I am more interested in being sure it all fits together.

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    I drilled out all the mounting holes for both hard drives, they will be attached using the screw holes on the undersides of the drives...

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    Finally a test fit of HDD placement, the drives shown below are just dummy drives being used to test fit and will not be used in the mod. Everything has been test fit and all the cutting and drilling to the frame is finished, just a small bit of filing and I can begin J-B'ing the sections together... I might just make my self imposed weekend deadline, which is good because the Duct tape is really starting to wear out.

    [​IMG]
     
  7. ARTbyTROY

    ARTbyTROY Mod it Til it Bleeds!

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    The cool part/bad thing about this mod is that everything sits so tightly next to everything else, when it is completely assembled you can't fit a fart in between some of the components. The space limitations were made evident when I mounted the Matrix Orbital, both HDD's, the MB tray and 6" LCD... not a lot of play. I disassembled the entire thing, removed all the duct tape and began sanding and filing the pieces that mate up in preperation for bonding them together with JB Quick.

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    After sanding and filing the peces were cleaned with Laquer thinner to remove any dirt or oils and then JB welded together. Below shows the base assembled.

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    After the base I started JB welding in the corner supports, the blocks are there to help me keep everything square for the four minutes that the JB Quick takes to set up.

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    All the corner braces are installed and it is finally tarting to shape up and look like something...

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    Next I mounted the slim CD-ROM tray to the top Alum Angle pieces for the mod and then attached the whole thing onto the corner braces, as shown below.

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    I had to put the illusion section into the freshly built frame, mainly to see how it looked sans duct tape but also because things seem a hair tighter after removing the tape and gluing it together...

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    I mount the Matrix Orbital and the 6" LCD in their final position in the side... looking good so far.

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    Below shows the back of the mod where all the mainboard connections are and where the second hard drive will be mounted. It also shows a mistake... the top fans are too close together to allow an IDE or power cable onto the CD-ROM drive, not a big a deal as I already have a plan to fix it.

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    Below is the fix... move the fans as close to the edges as possible without interfering with any other components, doing so required the removal of the fan grills from the inside of the mod, goodbye to dead weight any way.

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    The slim CD-ROM had to be elevated, the power connector for the CD drive sat smack dab inside the fan for the processor and it would have prevent it from working at all, the fix is shown below... elevate the drive and cut into the frame equates to problem solved.

    [​IMG]
     
  8. ARTbyTROY

    ARTbyTROY Mod it Til it Bleeds!

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    I drilled some holes in the top for four screws that may be used to hold the top on and added decorative brass corners to the mod. The brass corners will not be seen in the final mod, as such they're not being used decoratively they instead provide an extra level of structural support to the framing.

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    Let's see where it's at and spin through all the sides of the mod, here is the LCD/M.O. side of the mod...

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    Next, the back of the mod... all the cables for the mod will reside on this side, I also cut out for the power connector. I am considering putting the power and reset switch on this side as well, I will make my final switch location decision when the switches I ordered from allelectronics.com arrive.

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    Below is the view from the back of the motherboard tray, also notice that I sleeved the cables to the 60mm fans... totally decent sleeve job, they look sweet.

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    Lastly a shot of the bottom showing the underside of the CD-ROM tray... this is where the home grown lighting for the mod will reside.

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    Time to make some lighting, below shows most of the tools and materials used. Wire, heat shrink tubing, soldering iron and solder, X-Acto knife, electricians scissors, Sharpie marker and drumroll please... a 40 LED red automotive brakelight strip.

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    I am skipping a bunch of steps as far as pictures go, but it is all really simple. First I divided the brake strip into fourths and marked it with a Sharpie, next I broke out the dremel and cut the strip into 4 equal pieces. Using the X-Acto knife I scraped back the traces at the cut edges to expose the copper lines and soldered a short piece of wire to each one. Once one section was wired up I connected it to the next, and so on until it was done. The back side of the lighting was given a nice thick coating of liquid electrical tape and was left to sit and dry.

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    Test firing the lights, I spot soldered a wired four pin molex connector to the backside of the lights and plugged it into my test PSU to make sure that they worked before moving on to the next part...

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    I bought a Logisys remote and removed the PCB from the black plastic casing, wired it to the lights and zip tied the whole shebang to the underside of the CD-ROM tray.

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    Time for the final test fire, the picture below was taken with the camera flash on and does not show how bright the 40 LED's actually are...

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    The flash off shot below shows the lighting effect a little better... the lights point directly toward the location of the motherboard and TV tuner card and give off a creepy red glow.

    [​IMG]
     
  9. ARTbyTROY

    ARTbyTROY Mod it Til it Bleeds!

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    I ordered some speaker grills from AllElectronics.com and cut them to fit over top of the fans, they didn't have to be perfect since they won't really be seen, but they came out well.

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    I also spray painted the motherboard device panel piece black, I still have to polish it up but that will have to wait until I am closer to throwing hardware.

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    Below is the 6" LCD/Matrix Orbital side of the mod, I cut (with a nibbler) and filed a hole in the upper left corner and another at the center of the bottom, filing circles by eye is not easy (sucks actually), but as you can see they are pretty round.

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    The bottom circle cutout is for the IR reciever from the TV tuner card, without it the remote is useless so it had to be there... but then again it really is the best spot for it.

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    I blame AllElectronics.com for the hole in the top left corner, $46 for a pinhole camera w/mic means I have something else to cram into the mod... not a problem, I fit it in.

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    So now that I have a video camera going into it the mod will also be able to pull security duty on top of all the other things I have planned for it, I'm going big while still keeping things really small and after coming this far I have a new found respect for mini-ITX modders.

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    I plan to illuminate the interior of the illusion section using three white 3mm LEDs that will be connected to the LED breakout from the Matrix Orbital display. I drilled three evenly spaced holes into the bottom panel of the illusion section and then used the Dremel with a grinding bit to make the holes large enough to fit some 3mm LED clip holders.

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    Below shows the illusion section bottom panel with the LED clip holders installed, I also filed down three white LEDs and they are placed into the clip holders to test for fit, the left side of the picture shows the Matrix Orbital LED display... pre-modified.

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    Ok, the idea is to make the illusion section completely removable which means that the LED's and Matrix Orbital breakout PCB will have to be attached directly to it.

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    In the pictures above and below you can see the Alum-angle that I cut, nibbled and filed into submission and then JB-welded to the bottom of the illusion section.

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    Here is a side shot of the magic, the illusion section will sit directly over the lower hard drive and will lock into place above it... Alum-angle is indispensable, easy to work with and fairly priced stuff, the cuts here were all made with a nibbler and cleaned up with a file.

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    Below is a back down shot that shows the hole I cut in the back to allow for the LED wiring to pass through, and yes the protective film is still on the back of the 2-way mirror.

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  10. ARTbyTROY

    ARTbyTROY Mod it Til it Bleeds!

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    Time for some serious wiring and cable beautification... the sleeved power button is at the top of the image below, the wired and sleeved LED breakout for the Matrix Orbital sits below it and a custom sleeved and vinyl dyed molex Y-splitter cable rounds things out on bottom.

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    Here is the Matrix Orbital LED PCB all wired up and test fit into place, at this point I'm still thinking out how best to mount the PCB to the illusion section...

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    A view of the illusion section upside down with the reflected LED's shown positioned within their clip holders, just throwing it out because it looks so damned cool...

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    Here is the mounting method I came up with for the Matrix Orbital LED PCB, basically it is a strip of door edge molding that has been JB-welded to a piece of Alum-angle and the PCB sits snugly inside of it.

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    This next picture might clear up any questions about the mounting method, it clearly shows the short piece of Alum-angle that I used to mount the door edge molding and PCB to as well as the wiring beneath.

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    Close up shot of the LED break out, the solder job is entirely newb looking but based on past experience will work. I have a variable temp soldering station on order and it should be here soon... hopefully it will help me solder better ;P.

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    I used liquid electrical tape to hold the sleeved 3mm LED's in position, this was necessary... otherwise they just kept popping out of the clip holders.

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    With the illusion section all wired up it is time for the final test fit, I also added a couple of cut pieces of flat Alum-angle to the framework at the bottom to keep the illusion section from moving around and also keep it centered within the mod.

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    I wired up three 3mm red LED's to illuminate the backside of the carbon fiber motherboard tray, when this side is is entirely finished and the back painted panel is installed the lighting should produce a pretty cool effect.

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    You can kind of see it in the picture above but the one below shows it better, I installed a piece of aluminum flashing overtop of the 3mm LED's in an effort to make sure that the red lighting will not bleed through the outer black back painted panel. The flashing got the sand and clean treatment and some JB-Quick was used to hold it down, once that was all good and dry a dollop of some liquid electrical tape was used to keep the LED wiring in place.

    [​IMG]
     
  11. ARTbyTROY

    ARTbyTROY Mod it Til it Bleeds!

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    OK, onto the hardware... the motherboard, PSU, TV tuner and slim slot load DVD burner are installed and the respective cables are installed onto each device.

    [​IMG]

    The hard drives are installed and just how tight everything sits together is now made all the more evident, I'm not small at all and it's getting harder and harder to work within the limited confines of the case.

    [​IMG]

    The wiring is at this point still half assed, but I wanted to throw everything in to get a feel for things. Below is the port out side of the mod, the cables at the bottom are for the 6" LCD and the IR receiver.

    [​IMG]

    Spinning... 3/4 view of the port side of the mod and the back of the motherboard tray...

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    Back of the motherboard tray...

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    Still spinning... 6" LCD, Matrix Orbital, surveillance camera and IR receiver side...

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    3/4 shot showing the screen side and the illusion section/DVD burner side...

    [​IMG]

    Finally a shot of the illusion section in place, I will work on the wiring a bit more and hopefully fire it up after and install Windows MCE... WooHoo!

    [​IMG]

    The flat ribbon IDE cables I had intended using looked unsightly inside the case and covered up too much of the motherboard. There was no good way to fold them out of the way so I scrapped them in favor of the black rounded IDE cables shown below.

    [​IMG]

    I removed the paper tabs and the boots from the ends leaving me with the bottom cable in the picture below, the 18" dual device cable also received the same treatment.

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    Here are the cables attached to the main board and positioned within the case, it looks much nicer without the fat black IDE cables covering up all the hardware.

    [​IMG]

    Next up are the two 320GB hard drives that will replace the two 250GB drives that I had originally planned on using... 640 GB, beefy!

    [​IMG]

    Below are the two drives hooked up to the main board and Windows Media Center being installed, it is now officially a computer. I still have some hardware to install - pinhole camera, LCD screen and Matrix Orbital - and the hard drives still need to be mounted but it is definitely working, so I am working on it again.

    [​IMG]
     
  12. ARTbyTROY

    ARTbyTROY Mod it Til it Bleeds!

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    Yesterday I went and saw my friend with the laser, we worked together all afternoon cutting the pieces of Acrylic that will make up the case exterior (Thanks again Randy - the panels truly are top notch). He also has a really cool, brand new, high end industrial printer... if I would have measured out the parts placement beforehand he could have back painted the panels too. I don't know how well it would have worked because I don't want the light to show and I am uncertain of the inks opacity, but the like he said... it could also just print out a painting template directly onto the acrylic to make masking easier, I like how he thinks and that is probably what I will do.

    [​IMG]

    Check out the tasty laser-y goodness... Mmmmm, crunchy. The picture below shows the laser vented top panel and the front illusion section panel with the slot for the DVD burner cut out, it's starting to come together.

    [​IMG]

    Below is the side panel that everything hooks into and ports out of, it came out really kick ass... especially when you factor in how it was done. The case was placed onto a flatbed scanner (connector side down) and the scanned image was then traced in Corel Draw and used as a cutting template.

    [​IMG]

    The following picture shows just how well everything lines up, it only took two tries cutting scrap to get it all lined up perfectly... sweet.

    [​IMG]

    Three-quarter overhead view of the mother board tray side, the port out side and top...

    [​IMG]

    Motherboard side and top... the vent slots on the top panel turned out awesome and everything fits together really nicely.

    [​IMG]

    Lastly, the LCD and Matrix Orbital side panel.... no real fancy laser cutting on this or the last panel other than being cut to size.

    [​IMG]

    The acrylic panels have a few minor defects here and there, I am detail crazy (anal) and now currently working on polishing out all the tiny scratches, swirl marks and laser haze. Quality of work over quantity of work, with modding (or art) if there is anything that I can do to make it better I will likely end up doing it... so panel polishing, though tedious and in no way fun, is necessary and will make the finished mod that much better. The picture below shows the three different bottles of Novus and below them the sanding pads that came in the $14 sample kit I bought, I don't need to use the sanding pads as none of the scratches are deep (thankfully).

    [​IMG]

    The scratches and such are minor enough that I skipped using Novus #3 altogether, here's how it went... clean the panel with Novus #1, then polish it with Novus #2 and then clean it again with Novus #1, check your work and then repeat the entire twenty minute process. I have somewhat mixed feelings about Novus, it works and all that but then again so does toothpaste and Brasso... oh well, the sanding pads are nice.

    [​IMG]

    Today I worked on the wiring, I had to before I could do anything else because with everything hooked up to the little PSU... the remote control 40 LED lighting I made would not work, it does however work when connected to my test PSU. I think that I may have been splitting the power off too many times, the top cable in the picture below should fix the problem - I eliminated the power lead for the back case lighting so it now only has to power the remote lighting and pinhole camera. The old three LED array in the lower left of the picture below will not be used in the mod now (since it's power lead was eliminated) so I instead made a new three LED array that will not only light the back panel of the case but also serve a higher purpose by connecting to the mainboard as the power on, HDD activity and suspend LED's.

    [​IMG]

    STAY TUNED, I HAVE SUCH SIGHTS TO SHOW YOU.
     
  13. tm36usa

    tm36usa What's a Dremel?

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    :jawdrop: :jawdrop: Glad to see your at it again! Cant wait to see more. Keep it up! :thumb:
     
  14. R_H

    R_H What's a Dremel?

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    awesome

    what are the specs? not a gaming PC i hope
     
  15. Muon

    Muon What's a Dremel?

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    another artbytroy master piece i see ^^ its been ages since i've visited your site, but it always impressed ^^
     
  16. CursedBlad3

    CursedBlad3 What's a Dremel?

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    well i had to read this again, because it is simply a brilliant mod..
     
  17. scifi3018

    scifi3018 Minimodder

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    wow. I remeber following your last work from the begining to the end i suppose.

    This is amazing work. I have a few questions though.
    What are the extra pieces lying around the cube in the last couple of shots. They look like extra mobo cutouts, and an extra fan grill cutout. But they are only half the size of the cube.

    Also, how is this going to be finished up? or is that a secret?
    You mentioned that you dont want light to show through the paint, if so i imagine that you will have certain unpainted spots?

    And lastly (i think) how are you going to finish off the edges? Are you going to lay a strip of angle alu on top? When i first read laser cutting, i thought it would have been cool to get the polycarbonate beveled so all the pieces fited together seamlessly, but it appears otherwise.

    Please do tell, and i await your next update :)
     
  18. JAxen

    JAxen What's a Dremel?

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    kewl, nice work on that illusion box :thumb:
     
  19. ARTbyTROY

    ARTbyTROY Mod it Til it Bleeds!

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    Thanks tm36usa, Muon, CursedBlad3, JAxen and R_H... and no it is definitely not a gaming PC, more like an HTPC/MAME/TV-PVR/Home Security PC, the system specs are...

    Ituner PW200M 200W mini-PSU
    EPIA MII12000 mini-ITX - a sweet little board.
    1GB Crucial PC2100 DDR
    A pair of 320GB WD SE HDD's
    KWORLD (VS-TVMP2RF) Creator TV–MCE 200 Deluxe (W/FM)
    Panasonic slim slot load DVD burner
    6" TFT LCD monitor
    Matrix Orbital MX222

    They are just that, extra pieces that I will use to test a couple different masking techniques before I backpaint the panels with black vinyl dye.

    The finish is not so much a secret as my getting around to designing it. The unpainted spots will be for the back panel where the words "Hell's Illusion" will be cut out to show the carbon fiber and back lighting and the side with the LCD/Matrix Orbital/pinhole camera/IR receiver will also have unpainted spots for them to show through.

    I have a couple different ideas how to handle the edges and corners, but I am undecided whether to use thin pieces of dark hardwood or to just sculpt something (pillar of souls?) up the edges. Seamlessly fitting the panels together would have been cool, but I wrote some fiction to tie in with this mod and I want to stay true to the feel of the story by having it look more like a sideshow tent attraction than a slick piece of tech.... maybe I'll try it on the next one.
     
  20. scifi3018

    scifi3018 Minimodder

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    Cant wait for another update, much less a new page. My browser shudders everytime i click this log because of all the pics.

    Whats this you mentioed about the fiction? Did you ever write one for Lament I?
     

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