Lian Li PC-U6 Nautilus Water cooling and transparent side panels in a micro ATX Snail Quick Reference: 2. Cable Management/Sleeving 2a. Cable sleeving video by GotMods? 3. Custom SATA Power Pigtail 4. Water cooling mock-up 5. Cable Management Final Pics 6. Fan painting 7. Prep for WC 8. Water Cooling Install 9. FINAL PICTURES*NEW* I've read a LOT of project logs over the years, and since BT thankfully allows pictures to be viewed by guests, I never registered because I never had anything to add to any conversations. My skills compared to you all are quite n00b…my jaw drops at just about every project log I read, not to mention the tools that some of you have access to. Nevertheless, I guess we all have to start somewhere. So, here I am: first post and first project log...on a case that's certain to make some people roll their eyes. I am certainly aware that the popularity of the Lian Li PC-U6B has pretty clear divisions. "A Snail?" "WTF???" "Ew." All comments I've read many times in response to posts and reviews on this case. Personally, I first saw it about a year ago and loved it but found the $260-300 price tag a bit of a barrier for something so unique and "single purpose". Nevertheless, six months later and a limited time price drop had it in my hands. The case itself is mATX and is designed kind of like the LanBoy in that it's a mesh case that relies on direct airflow to keep things cool. Construction is typical Lian Li…quality finish, grommetted cable pass throughs, tool less design and innovative solutions to hardware placement. Aside from the shape and lack of water cooling (to be fixed), I believe most people would applaud the case. Ah, but the shape. At first I sort of enjoyed the "nautilus" design (preferable description to "snail", IMO) but soon found myself fantasizing about fitting in water-cooling and a window to see it. This has challenges such as the mesh design, side mounted fans blocking the view, and lack of space for a radiator…but i have some ideas to fix all of this. As far as other mod projects with this case I've searched high and low and have only found 1: here In this particular case, the modding seems very limited…chrome the side panels and replace the red LEDs with blue. I want to take it further. So without further ado, I bring you the WIP title "Snail Impressions". I look forward to your feedback, suggestions and ideas on my first project log! Initial Build" First step was ordering the case and parts. I wanted a fairly powerful computer to run games at good resolutions, but didn't need a powerhouse. Last time I considered myself a big gamer was back on my Commodore 64. I was soon pwn'd by my friends who quickly overtook my ability in Mortal Kombat on N64 and the rest is history. But I digress. Motherboard is an Asus Maximus IV Gene-Z/Gen3. I admit the black and red color scheme played a role in the decision, but it also came with fantastic over clocking features and other fun stuff like an on-board power button and…never mind, I paid more for the color scheme: Core i5-2500k, 8GB of Corsair DDR3 RAM, dual 120GB SSDs and a Geforce 560ti rounded out the setup: I've been running this setup in stock form (no mods, air cooling) for the last 3 months, so I needed a cooler that could at least handle a 4.6Ghz over clock until water cooling got underway. The case seemed to beg for a top down design, so I went with the CoolerMaster GeminII…a fantastic cooler, and appears to be Gen 2 of a cooler I've used in a couple of my customer's setups that have always worked great. Full setup is powered by 550watts…I know it doesn't seem like much, but running Prime95 and Unique Heaven, fans on high I've only seen 320watts being used. This is a potential future upgrade, but I should be fine for now. And it has a red LED lit fan. I'm weak. Here are the parts setup for initial equipment tests before install (and pre-560ti): Installed in case WITHOUT the side fans mounted: Once I put in the side fans, you can see that it blocks a lot of visibility for future upgrades, but does a fantastic job of cooling. This will be resolved later: So this is the completed "stock" build before mods. Now it's time to make it look cool…more to come! Installing windows...literally Time to take the "snail" out of it and put in some windows. Thankfully, Lian Li made it easy…the mesh panels are screwed onto a frame, so removing them was just a matter of taking out 9 screws on each panel. Then traced the mesh onto smoked grey acrylic: Once it was traced, I cut the two pieces apart with a jigsaw and then used a scroll saw to cut out the shapes and drilled the screw holes. For whatever reason, those pictures appear to not have taken. But then I DO have pictures attaching the acrylic to the frame: I picked up some rubber grommets at the hardware store to act as spacers and provide a softer clamp: Once complete, the side panel looks like this: In order to make more room for water cooling and allow an unobstructed view of everything, I needed to remove the dual 120mm fans on the front. I relocated one of the fans to the front, which will eventually mount to a radiator I need to somehow fit in the same space: Finally, here's the picture of the panel installed on the case (yes, this is a cell phone picture, but it somehow shows the inside lit up better than the picture I took with the actual camera…go figure): These were done on both sides, but the other side just shows cables (though they're smoked out pretty well). I'll be sleeving wires, so I haven't yet decided if I will further tint that panel to hide them or allow the wires to be seen…guess it depends how nice my sleeving works! More soon!