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Case Mod - In Progress Project "Sulaco"

Discussion in 'Project Logs' started by tobyak, 30 Jul 2011.

  1. tobyak

    tobyak New Member

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    [​IMG]

    Hello All

    So, im new here this will be my first of hopefully many project logs,
    in the first few posts ile outline the project and whati hope to end up with

    Including my inspiration, how im going to get the job done (were talking a low enough budget to make a victorian family cringe)

    And hopefully gather some interest for tips, help and some much needed support

    I have a background in design and a lot of plastic scratch building from an addiction to 40k in my youth. As i lack a lot of the serious tools i will be coming up with some interesting ways round common problems

    By the end of this i shall be hence forth known as "Dremel Boy" or if the cutting wheel slips "The 9 finger Noob"

    So watch this space for what could be either an epic tryumph or epic fail... but hell either way should be interesting

    First up some of the sources or inspiration, I suspect most can have a good guess from the project name


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    The good Old USS Sulaco, Marine carrier ship from Aliens

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    The Atmosphere processors may best reflect the feel, its heavy industry with big lines and chunky details

    The case i am going to build on to is the NZXT Tempest EVO
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    Chunky Styling is allready a feature so it should be a superb platform to build on to

    So were going with chunky industrial lines and a plated metal look to it, fan grills currently in design phase (OMG there huge) pics soon


    SO why choose an NZXT Tempest evo?

    Well lets look at its attributes
    [​IMG]
    For a midtower this is huge.. and that's with a capital HU!
    Steel Chassis, sire its not light but it sure as hell can take punishment and support some seriously heavy gear

    And of course every ones concern.... cooling... although it has none of the trappings of 20mm fans it sports plenty in the 120mm to 140mm range. for me (A die hard air cooler)
    it is perfect, but also sports 5 water-cooling grommets
    Did i mention the case was big???
    And on a final note... the case is big lol

    Side on
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    Large tinted window and 120m fan with filter. A slight departure from most windows as it is mounted outside the case sitting proud of the side panel, it really helps to keel the case symetrical whilst also gaining a slight amount of extra clearance for the larger aircoolers out there

    Inside
    [​IMG]
    Well we are back to "ITS HUGE" no more bleeding fingers from case edges for me, i can in stall my rig in this and use it as a spare room for guests, its clutter free and the HDD racks are tool less and can be removed completly for GFX card space or for controlers to be hidden away behind the front support


    Top
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    Recessed ports prevent them getting kicked or knocked... we all know the pain of hearing a crunch leaning over our pc and viewing the horror of a USB plus pointing 45deg out of the port, well break your ports no longer... and the area infrobt makes a handy dandy place to keep memory cards (well for me anyway)


    It has great strong lines and a sharp clean shape, its huge panels leave plenty of space to mod in to/ on to/ over or through, its such a huge case with so many possabilities offered my its strong frame and sheer size that it was a huge headache picking a theme to use

    I have been an NZXT fan for years, right back to the LEXA, and we are talking pre blackline edition

    So without further boring you all to death (condolences to those who died of bordom reading)

    Project Sulaco............​
     
    Last edited: 5 Aug 2011
  2. tobyak

    tobyak New Member

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    This case accepts 6 fans stock and I am adding more in to my custom window, Several custom made grills will be used on this project to show off case fans as a key part of the theme for its industrial look

    Hopefully i will be using Enermax fans

    Frankly and fan will look good in an MNPCtech.com Overkill "Nautilus" 120mm Fan Grill

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: 4 Oct 2011
  3. (FIH) The Don

    (FIH) The Don New Member

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    cool story bro



    but you need pics.
     
  4. tobyak

    tobyak New Member

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    Working on those now dude.. i think photubucket hates me
     
  5. ColdzeroTeam

    ColdzeroTeam New Member

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  6. tobyak

    tobyak New Member

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    Some test fitting of some early stage additions, second of the mk1 custom intakes and some fleshing out of the panel layout

    Intakes made from hand cast polyester resin in a Silicone RTV mould made form the plasticard master, all other components 3mm plasticard
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    [​IMG]



    Finishes intake fresh out of the mould, at this stage they are very brittle, and need to cure for several days, maybe even a month to be on the safe side
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    Twin mk1 intakes and cutouts for Silverstone media panel, and blue ray drive, layed out to test fitting and space on the panel
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    And yes i know the intake flanges are not perfectly symetrical.... i have a cunning plan for that later

    NOTE, allways use a canister filter mask when working with polyester resin... i did not, took 3 days before i stopped seeing double
     
    Last edited: 30 Jul 2011
  7. tobyak

    tobyak New Member

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    Side Panel Desighn phase

    Had some spare time today between work and fending the kids of with a dremel os have doen the prelimiary design of the side panel for Project Sulaco. Very Industrial with big intakes, think of it as a cross between an indulstrial cooling system and an escape/airlock

    Prelim sketch (no laughing it was quick lol)
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    First stage, wire frames and checking the size works for styling
    {param}


    Materials :


    Renders of the window (not true colour)

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    [​IMG]

    Still a lot more design to do before i can start some serious fabrication
     
    Last edited: 1 Aug 2011
  8. razerz

    razerz New Member

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    This shall be interesting to watch. I love industrial buildings (and have way too many pictures of such on my hard drive...), so cases inspired by the same designs is always nice to see.
     
  9. tobyak

    tobyak New Member

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    Hopefully i shall not dissapoint, some of the fab wil be a nightmare but where there is a Toby theres an insane idea to get round it
     
  10. tobyak

    tobyak New Member

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    Aluminium on the way for the main parts of the side and "banding" fab

    [​IMG][​IMG]

    To start only need 500mmx500mm of each 1.2mm brushed alu and 500mmx500mm plain aluminium, this will be enough for the main features
     
  11. tobyak

    tobyak New Member

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    Here is a few more shots of some elements that are driving the design

    Sulaco inner airlock[/B]
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    Exterior airolock of the Nostromo
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    Why have a note on the OUTSIDE of the airlock warning against explosive bolts... if you are outside to be reading that then the bolts are the least of your worries

    I am hoping to incorporate some of these details in to the finished design, perhaps not to clean and clinical as in the Sulaco's inner airlock but cretainly with the same sturdy build
     
    Last edited: 1 Aug 2011
  12. shomann

    shomann New Member

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    And shouldn't that be written in Xenomorph? I mean, those guys are the ones continually screwed by airlocks anyway ;)

    How durable is this plastic casting method? I haven't seen it employed before, but it looks like a great way to get exactly the parts you expect. Nice work so far!
     
    Last edited: 1 Aug 2011
  13. tobyak

    tobyak New Member

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    IT all depends on the part you need, i used a standard 100/1mix (liquid to catalyst) for my parts, the finished item can be brittle is its a thin section so for anything with walls less then 5mm you need to add a filler power to change its properties, although for a fan grill or an object that is intended for a one time fitting then being left in place a normal mix is fine.

    The hardest part is making the blank to base your Silicone RTV mould on as it takes 24hours to fully cure the mould box or shroud you make must be 100% sealed on corners and bottom, top can be open obviously

    The resin its self takes about an hour to cure to a point where you can de-mould. and a week untill you can do any finishing work, you can do the finishing work earlier but any sanding or filing tool will very quickly block with "Green" resin, rather similar to trying to sand over a non cured paint

    I watched a ton of you tube videos about it and adapted the tips for me.

    BTW: DURABILITY.... once fully cured although brittle (if you are not using a filler) it is very heat resistant, will not warp and is an excelent surface to paint

    I would be happy to throw some links on to the ones found the most useful
     
  14. tobyak

    tobyak New Member

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    Hey guys quick update, after some though ive decided to change the bezel on the side panel from alu/acrylic to cast polyester resin, it seems its not used a whole lot so I want to show case its uses and hope to present it as a log/tutorial within my work log
     
  15. tobyak

    tobyak New Member

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    Awaiting supplies for casting and some materials so on with the bezel....

    First things first, test fitting
    [​IMG]
    However soon a problem arises, IE the flanges on the surrounds are not symetrical, a minor disaster but not the end of the world. i have a cunning plan.....

    First up, covering up that nasty gap between the 2 intakes with a fresh sheet of plasticard, set i place with 2 part epoxy
    [​IMG]

    Then i needed to begin forming it to the original lines of the intakes, without some better tools then i have its time to make use of the sturdy kraft knife and some precision files, making lots and lots of incise cuts to edge my war closer to the main form, the feathering this creates also makees the final cut off much easier
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    3 Hours later
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  16. tobyak

    tobyak New Member

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    Next up, giving it that deep set duct that i so wanted to look lik an air con or ventilation unit

    For this I had to use several strips and glue then end to end to get the length strip i needed, left to dry for 48hours, a huge amount of time to dry poly ut as the glued join measured 20mm X 0.5mm it needed to be solid
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    Once the epoxy on the reverse has set i can go ahead and poly the join between the edge of the duct and the top sheet, i have allowed some extra material to remove later, I am sure all of us would rather need to remove more rather then find we had not removed enough
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

     
  17. tobyak

    tobyak New Member

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    WOW hot day, wish i was outside but needs must, i simply haft to get these flanges fixed. The flanges on the corners were not exactly symetrical so i had the idea to raise the whole section and build a fake box on top of them to the exact shape i wanted, once drawn up and measured the gluing was easy, BUT they are only attached by there ends until i can get the side pieces put together

    [​IMG]
     
  18. Gentleman_Dingo

    Gentleman_Dingo New Member

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    I like where this is going and the selected inspirations. Mod on, my friend.
     
  19. tobyak

    tobyak New Member

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    I shall indeed dude... i shall indeed.. i will continue until i dremel my last finger off or my wife sees my bank ballance and murders me with a hard drive
     
  20. Gentleman_Dingo

    Gentleman_Dingo New Member

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    Mine wouldn't be so kind to murder me with a hard drive. It'd be more painful to murder me with a marathon session of reality TV shows.
     

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