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Scratch Build – In Progress Project - Silent fibreglass PC

Discussion in 'Project Logs' started by riekmaharg2, 22 Feb 2009.

  1. riekmaharg2

    riekmaharg2 has finished Blue Horizon

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    Update: 17th sept, please see page 12 page for improvements to the heatsink and visual design of the inside of the case.



    I'm hoping to create a silent computer (or close to silent) by using a very large heat sink with a very slow moving fan. I also plan to make the computer case look as aethetically pleasing as possible. I'm already half way into this project so I no its not really a complete log as I go along, but ive listed all the steps anyway.

    In the end after many designs I decided this one was the best:

    [​IMG]

    I started off by making the case full scale in 3DS Max:

    [​IMG]

    Once I had made the shape of the case in 3DS I then made a toolpath over it:
    [​IMG]

    Once the toolpath had been created I then copied it accoss to a CNC Machine. I used a foam called REP in the CNC machine to create a mould for the fibreglass to form over:

    [​IMG]

    As my CNC machine was too small to fit the entire case mould on I had to make it in sections then glue them together with high strength spray glue. Now that the mould was finished I began the very messy job of fibreglassing over the mould:

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Once the fibreglass had been left over night to set I used a cutting disc to level the large uneven areas of fibreglass then a disc sander to smooth it all:
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    I then used various fillers in order to create a perfect smooth finish as the fibreglass itself is very rough. I started off using a car body filler to fill the more seriously rough areas then I used a different fine car surface filler to fill the less rough areas. However I eventually found to my suprise that plaster board filler actually worked better for creating a very smooth finish:

    [​IMG]

    Once the fillers had set I used a spray putty to fill the fine scratches from all the sanding of the fillers. Now that the outside was perfect I started working on the inside. To gain access to the inside of the case I used the tools shown below to remove the side panel and scoop out all that foam: [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    A long time later I finally ended up with foam free fibreglass:
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: 17 Sep 2009
  2. skybarge

    skybarge just chilling at work

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    Looking good so far, I like the smooth black finish too in the sketches, keeping an eye on this one :)
     
  3. jhanlon303

    jhanlon303 The Keeper of History

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    You have some serious skill! This is very nice. I watch.

    john
     
  4. Burnout21

    Burnout21 Is the daddy!

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    surprised your still living, what with owning a recumberant bike, get much hassle from traffic?

    Nice fibre glass work, guess its your trade!
     
  5. murtoz

    murtoz Busy procrastinating

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    Very nice idea!
    How are you routing the mobo ports out? What hardware are you putting in?and how do you plan to create the heatsink, are you using heatpipes?
    subscribed!
     
  6. 500mph

    500mph The Right man in the Wrong place

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    Stick a monitor in it and make it an all in one pc!
     
  7. 985323

    985323 I am Jack's smirking revenge

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    This is an Awsome idea, +sub
     
  8. b00mb1ast3r

    b00mb1ast3r Testdrive unlimited LoVeR

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    thats a really nice design.
    cool cnc i wish i had 1 of thoose
     
  9. dan-ere-07

    dan-ere-07 New Member

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    wow looking very good.
    you could have melted the foam out of there...
    but i guess that way is easier.
    looking forward to seeing the finished result.
     
  10. Reverse

    Reverse Reverse/srvR

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    Wow, impressive start. How will you manage the motherboard-back holes btw?
    To me it looks like the motherboard would sit at an 90 degree angle to where you drew the holes.
     
  11. Kenny_McCormick

    Kenny_McCormick Member

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    Good work so far. I like the idea, reminds me the PS3 style.
     
  12. riekmaharg2

    riekmaharg2 has finished Blue Horizon

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    Hi thanks for all the interest ill try and answer all your questions as best as I can:

    1. the recumberant bike is actually not mine its just been stored in the workshop for someone else.
    2. I thought I would go for a unique approach to the motherboard arrangement. Im planning on having the layout like this:
    [​IMG]

    However the motherboard back panel isnt going to be used in the normal way. Instead ive bought sockets for all the connectors that I require (DVI, LAN, Audio e.t.c) which are on the back of the motherboard which im then going to attach to the back of the case on the flat part just before the curved section where the heatsink is going. I will be using the milling tool on my dremel to mill out each whole for each socket. Once I've glued the sockets into place ill solder wires and plug onto the sockets so that the sockets which ive just glued onto the case can be plugged into the motherboard back panels.

    3. The hardware im using is a Gigabyte motherboard, AMD 939 4.6ghz dual core, 2GB 400DDR RAM, almost 1TB of SATA harddrive space using two harddrives, a radeon X1900GT graphics card, and a DVD burner.

    4. A water cooling system is going to be used.

    5. I am going to make the heatsink by using a long peice of aluminum and bending it back and forward all the way along. Then I will solder copper pipe onto the back of the heatsink.

    6. If there is enough space once ive put all the components in I was thinking of adding an LCD to the large square panel I removed which would display temperatures and fan speeds.

    7. I didn't think it would have been wise to burn the foam out. I smells quite toxic even when its being cut on the CNC lol.

    If you dont understand any of the above please post a message and ill try and explain it better. Thanks again for all the interest. Im heading down to the workshop I use now to begin cutting out some HDD,CD drive, and ventillation holes, ill keep you all posted on my progress with some pics.
     
  13. riekmaharg2

    riekmaharg2 has finished Blue Horizon

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    I was trying to get the PS3 look, however with a few extras added on.
     
  14. riekmaharg2

    riekmaharg2 has finished Blue Horizon

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    I have made another post answering all your questions but it hasnt appeared yet and it wont let me add it again. Hopefully it will appear later.
     
  15. Dmc

    Dmc Member

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    I like were this is going I have to bump this thread.
     
  16. riekmaharg2

    riekmaharg2 has finished Blue Horizon

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    Now that the foam is removed I sanded down the inside of the case and coated it in filler to make it smoother:
    [​IMG]

    Once I had decided where the middle of the sides was I then drilled holes in each corner of a pencil drawn box the exact size of a CD drive on one side and a box the size of Harddrive on the other:

    [​IMG]

    I then used a Jigsaw to cut out the panels. It was very difficult to cut in straight line with jigsaw as I couldn't get the case to stay still, so I had to use a file to get the holes straight:

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    I used the same method to cut out the harddrive slots:
    [​IMG]


    Now that the HDD and CD drive slots have been made I went onto the large vent on the top. To get the shape I created the design on MS Publisher then printed it out full size and used it as a template. Once I had the template I then cut out the vent using the same method as with the CD/HDD slots:

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    I then filed the edges of the fins accross the vent to make them look more blade like:

    [​IMG]

    Because the fibreglass that runs along the top of the large panel I remove was now quite thin I decided to paste the filler all the way along it on the inside to strenghten it. Once the filler had set I milled out a channel using the dremel for the mesh im using to slot into:

    [​IMG]

    Ive got more pics coming soon.
     
  17. Unicorn

    Unicorn Uniform November India

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    I like what you've done so far... I know from re- moulding old PC case front bezels with it how tricky fibreglass is to work with, as someone else here said, you make it look like your trade! What sort of CNC mill/ router did you use to make the mould?
     
  18. riekmaharg2

    riekmaharg2 has finished Blue Horizon

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    I then slotted the mesh into the channel that I milled out on one side, and I glued the other side to the case:
    [​IMG]

    The glue I used was a very strong 2 part glue:
    [​IMG]

    I then pressed car body filler into the gaps in the mesh around the edges to further secure the mesh to the case:

    [​IMG]

    Heres a few pics of the almost complete vent:

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    To complete the vent im going to glue a small strip of plastic on the inside edge of the vent to hide the filler. I will come back to this later when I have ordered some thin plastic (most probably styrene).

    As I couldnt proceed with the vent I moved onto the power button and its 2 USB ports. To make the power button im going to use a metal disc connected to the gate pin on a mosfet with a very high resistance pull down resister. This will mean that I can power up the computer with just a touch of the metal disc. I decided to use a piece of clear acrylic to attach the power button and the 2 USB ports:

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    I attached the USB by using the 2 part glue and small peices of acrylic to reinforce it:

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    I then cut an appropriately sized hole into the case and glued the acrylic into the case:

    [​IMG]

    More Pics coming tomorrow.
     
  19. riekmaharg2

    riekmaharg2 has finished Blue Horizon

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    Beleive it or not its actually the first time ive ever used fibreglass. The CNC machine I used is a 3 axis machine which uses Mach 3. Is that what you wanted to know unicorn?
     
  20. NysoO

    NysoO Handcrafted

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    Impressive! Beeing your first time with fibre glass.
    The design looks really slick, can't wait for the next update :)
     

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