Discussion in 'Project Logs' started by charlesshoults, 3 Jun 2008.
Sorry to here it, Can't weight to se the secound version.
I'm currently at work, checking in to see if I can get some suggestions. My revision is pretty much finished, with a few details left to be designed, and I'll post a couple views of it. One thing that bugged me about the old version was the footprint. It was very low to the surface but took up a pretty good surface area. The new layout stands pretty tall, 2-3" taller than my MozartTX but has a reasonably small footprint, 16" diameter if I remember correctly. I have hard drive positions, power supplies, water pump, fans and all, but still needed to find a place for a motherboard. No way it will ever fit a full ATX board. A Mini ITX board would fit very well, but a Micro ATX board could be shoehorned in if necessary. I'm looking at one of two possibilities. One is a Jetway Nvidia 8200 Mini ITX, on which I would put an Athlon 64 X2 running at 2.9GHz, costing around $300 for the pair. My second option, which seems more likely is to drop in an ASUS P5E-VM DO for $120 and use a 3.0GHz P4 until I buy a new processor for it. In either case, I'm going to be making custom cables for everything that comes off the board other than SATA. I'm not going to use a backplane at all because I don't want to cut into the symmetry of the case. Here are my questions:
1. Has anyone here ever used two power supplies to operate one computer? I'm looking at a pair of 300w SFF power supplies, one slaved to the other with a relay. One to power the hard drives, slot-load DVD, servos and two CCFT inverters, the other to power the motherboard, water pump and four fans.
2. If I proceed with step 1 above, would 300w be sufficient for powering a motherboard and pump, assuming future Core 2 Duo or Quad Core, along with 4 sticks of memory (8GB total)? I downloaded the manual to dig through, to see if it has any recommendations, but who knows. Integrated video, audio, network and all. I expect to only ever put in one PCI card, an additional SATA raid card.
1. Yup.. running two PSUs in my main rig, and I have used dual PSU setups for several years w/o problems (not counting my own misstake, forgetting to plug in the fan on one of the PSUs ). You only have to connect the PSUs so they have common ground and connect the green wire on the PSU A with the green wire on PSU B.
If you don't want to solder on your PSUs, you can modify a ATX extension cable so it has a connector (with black and green wire) that connects to the ATX connector of the other PSU.
2. I dunno.
It seems I'm a victim of availability. I have an In Win 185w PSU that I use for testing devices and found a 300w PSU of the same form factor for $28.00. Turns out, the motherboard I'm looking at requires at least a 400, so I'm going to be stuck with using a conventional size. I'm going to have to increase the overall diameter of my design, but I should be able to shorten it by 4-5". I figured I would use a relay to have one PSU turn on the other, but wiring them together sounds a lot faster. I'm going to run a 600w and the 300w SFF, putting essentials on the 600 and as many storage devices as I can on the 300.
I did some testing with aluminum bits yesterday, to see what effect solder had on it. I know that rosin core solder doesn't really work with aluminum. I just hoped that somehow the physical properties of aluminum had changed while I slept. Nope. Still doesn't work. But, my welding rods came in today, so I should be able to start injuring myself.
While I'm sure that aluminum can be welded, I'm not sure this is it. Admittedly, I had to do it in two passes, clamped by a pair of vice grips, but the process of seeing the stuff melt and flow into the joint seems a lot like an aggressive solder instead of a weld. But, it should be strong enough to be used as a computer case frame, provided that I have a good way to keep everything square and flat through the whole heating, welding and cooling process. I'll have to weld panels of 8 pieces all at once, before anything is unclamped.But, the finished process is probably not going to be pretty. I'll get everything as even as I can and hope powder-coating, and the fact that the frame is covered by lots of plastic and more aluminum, hides the flaws.
welded aluminium? NICE!
are you gonna file all the welds down?
Nice weld, aluminium is supposed to be the hardest thing to weld because it doesn't change colour like iron and steel.
If you get a good penetrating weld
you should be able to grind the weld down to invisible, sand and polish nicely.
It some times takes a while to get the hang of it. if it's expanding and contracting too much try tack welding all sides then go back and connect the tack welds.
What kind of welder are you using tig or arc?
Here is a rough rendering of what I have planned. It's a little larger in footprint than the MozartTX, but about the same height. It will sit on a 4-leg framework, ending up 2" taller.
A slot-loading DVD drive, salvaged from a dead iMac will be placed vertically above the LCD, in the wall of the case. Power supply, radiators and as many servos as will fit are in the lowest section, hard drives and fans in the second section with motherboard, boot drive and optical drive in top. CCFTs will be mounted inside the 3/4" tubing itself (just barely fits) and shining toward the core, which is hollow through the lower two sections. Everything should vent through the top. Processor is water cooled and the motherboard is covered by a 1/4" thick sheet of acrylic.
Now that looks very cool. Nice refinement on original design.
man that looks like sex! (not really, but you get the point) if this turns out like that render, as im sure it would! this will be probably one of my highest classed scratch builds!
/*Cant wait to see more
Cool!! Welded/soldered alu, that's not something you see every day on the modding forums. =) About the strength, I'm willing to bet a months salary that it will be strong enough, even if you don't get it perfect.
I second Xer0-'s question, what kind of welder are you using?
I've only used a "hard" solder product my self. Very easy to use, and produces a joint that is stronger than the alu it self. For those that might want to know more, check out the quote in this post. Also, you might want to scroll down to post #59 for some beginners advice.
That sure is true for hard soldering alu. I've found that if you use a butane burner you can look at the bounce off flames, when they turn orange you are in the right ballpark (see 'post #59' link above).
Nice design Charles! I'm very much looking forward seeing you building it!! 8D
Dude, that's seriously slick!
Decided I hate trying to weld aluminum, but will have to do it regardless. I clamped eight pieces down to a sheet of steel and began heating the aluminum. Problem is that the steel began to bow as it heated up, throwing everything out of alignment. I'm going to end up having to cut small strips of aluminum to put inside the tubing and riveted in place toward the interior of the enclosure. I can still do it in such a way that the rivets are never seen. I'll then weld all edges, mostly to hide the seams.
I'm concentrating on the lowest section first, as seen in the attached rendering. The lowest block is 8" tall and roughly-speaking, a 15" octagon. It will house a 600w power supply, a pair of Black Ice GT radiators with 120mm fans and a swiftech water pump. I'm looking at getting an aluminum equivalent of Modders Mesh. I found pieces of it to the same specification as the bare steel mesh, but for somewhere around $8 per sq. ft. Considering I'll need 24 pieces at 6.5"x 2.5", and the fact that aluminum will never rust, I'd rather go that route. I'll be ordering a shipment of tubing and acrylic panels on Friday.
Yeah alu is a bitch to weld lol. Slowly but shorly wins the race mate, take your time.
And use an argon shield when welding alu!
The problem with welding aluminum is that aluminum oxide's melting point is much greater than aluminum's melting point. So when you finally get through the oxide layer, you overkill the aluminum underneath. If you back off it too much, it get's exposed to oxygen and oxidizes, which put's you right back where you started. As Mankz said, you need some kind of shielding, usually argon gas, to prevent oxygen from touching the aluminum while you are working on it.
You can weld it the hard way, or you can do it the easy way -> demo video
I'm playing around with different construction methods, some of which might eliminate most of the aluminum structure of the case, therefore making welding less necessary. Although, in cases where the aluminum structure is still in place, I had a "duh" moment. If each ring is made up of eight pieces, and each of those pieces is cut from one bar, there is not need to cut each piece out completely. Figure the angle that needs to be bent and the outside length of each section, cut three sides, bend to shape and weld those sides back together. Just hope everything is even at the end.
Another question. Lets say you have a case with a water-cooling loop consisting mostly of copper hard line. Pumps are rated at vertical lift, but is there a functional limit of how much tubing it can push water through? Six feet of line is not unheard of, but would there be any difference if you had, say, thirty feet? If your loop is made for 3/8" ID Tygon tubing and you start building your own heat-exchangers, would you want to use 3/8" ID copper tubing or would you want to go smaller?
I was planning on ordering a bending brake today, but after revisions, wasn't sure what size I would need, if I could get by with the 18" or if I would need the 30". After doing some looking, I'm glad I held off. I found an article that shows how to make your own brake out of three pieces of angle iron, three pieces of square tubing, hinges and bolts. The whole thing is clamped down to a workbench and looks like it would work fine. So, I know what I'll be doing tomorrow.
It it works, post the link to the article.
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