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Case Mod - In Progress Water & Wood - 99% finished - photo shoot (8 Oct)

Discussion in 'Project Logs' started by miahallen, 17 May 2011.

  1. miahallen

    miahallen Team IRONMODS - World Champions!

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    Water & Wood


    This is a desk build...in other words, it will be built into my desk. The desk is made from pine, which is why I'm calling this Water & Wood. I'm calling it a "case mod" because I'll just be modding the existing desk, not building one from scratch.

    Direct links to updates:
    1. motherboard tray slider installation (this page)
    2. GPU waterblocks and the fan wall (this page)
    3. first reassembly (this page)
    4. fill port and leak testing (this page)
    5. final loop flush (this page)
    6. PWM controller wired, and blocks cleaned & mounted (this page)
    7. first fulll assembly with water cooling (this page)
    8. initial temp testing, air VS water (this page)
    9. 1st dust filter built, and pump mounted (this page)
    10. work started on the front panel, and PSU sleeving complete
    11. work started on the front door and window
    12. work on the front door continues...until disaster strikes...also new air filter installed
    13. new GPU backplates installed ...then tragedy strikes the 2nd front door :(
    14. amazing what proper tools can do!
    15. Water & Wood is nominated for bit-tech's MOTM...VOTE FOR ME! :rock:
    16. fan frame complete...plus! 99% finished photo shoot

    Direct links to videos:
    1. water cooling components 1st flush
    2. custom PWM fan wall in operation
    3. loop flow demo
    4. 1700W from a 1050W PSU!!!
    5. window etching time lapse video
    6. Playing a little DCS A-10C with headtracking

    Parts list

    Water cooling parts

    I've got quite a few unique ideas for this build, but it's going to be slow going for another month or so. I'm still working out a full parts list, but many are asking about the build, so I wanted to give you something to look at while you wait :cool:

    Swiftech and Coldzero Team will be sponsoring this build, thanks a ton! :D
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    Read my Maximus IV Extreme review here: part 1, part 2
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    I plugged the loop into Martin's Pump & Rad Optimizer to see what it said...of course there are a couple caveats
    • My rads are 420s, not 320s
    • My blocks are the new (more restrictive) design for the 580
    • My CPU is planned to be run in parallel with the GPUs

    idle (200W -- 1000RPM -- pump @ 50%)
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    max load (1000W -- 2600RPM -- pump @ 100%)
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    Last edited: 7 Oct 2011
  2. miahallen

    miahallen Team IRONMODS - World Champions!

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    reserved for final pics
     
  3. miahallen

    miahallen Team IRONMODS - World Champions!

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    reserved for final performance results
     
  4. miahallen

    miahallen Team IRONMODS - World Champions!

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    Case Mod Water & Wood - another desk build (dust filter update - May 29th)

    I've been hard at work on the build for a week already, and I know some of you may have already seen this elsewhere, but I wanted my initial post here to have some meat for you to dig your teeth into....thanks BT :)

    Here is the old desk I'll be modifying....it's not much to look at, but it'll work:
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    I'm using the Mountain Mods XL-ATX (10-slot) motherboard tray in black wrinkle:
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    The plan is to attach the motherboard tray to the inside of the left wall of the PC opening on the left. One of the parts I was not sure about was how I would attach the sliders to the motherboard tray.
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    After mucking around a bit, I decided to use a couple pieces of wood, and attach them to the tray with some M3 bolts through these freshly drilled holes:
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    While getting the first slider attached, I had to attach the wood to the tray further back from the slider mounting hole, due to the CPU backplate opening. This was not an issue, until I tried to slide out the slider, and realized I'd have to come up with a plan to recess this nut, as it was impeding the slider's movement.
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    After a bit more fussing, I got everything lined up, and the sliders working happily.
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    Next, I disassembled the desk, and removed the wall where the motherboard will be mounted, to get the sliders attached.
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    Getting them lined up and screwed in was not too difficult, but I measured about 4 times to ensure the first holes I drilled would be correct.
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    I'm planning to run the rig a bit on air, just to make sure all the components are happy together before I install the water cooling, so I finished off the night with some basic assembly.
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    When shopping for sliders, I wanted to ensure I got some heavy duty units...IIRC these are rated to hold a 300lb drawer...
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    Last edited: 28 May 2011
  5. miahallen

    miahallen Team IRONMODS - World Champions!

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    EK Full cover blocks:
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    3 way parallel bridge and bridge links:
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    Bridge links installed:
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    Bridge installed:
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    Here is a brief video showing the 1st flush process:

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    I started by taping together some rad templates and placing them on the rad wall (the inner right wall of the PC opening in the desk).
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    One of my goals for this build (being a daily use rig) will be low noise, to mechanically decouple the fans from the desk, I'm using a 1mm layer of cork under the fans.
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    After getting the template placed, I drilled holes for all the fan screws, and at the center of each fan hole, then removed the template. Then I needed to cut the fans holes in the cork, I marked the holes with a compass (using the aforementioned holes as the center for my compass) and began to cut the cork by hand with a box cutter (razor blade).
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    Cork layer all cut.
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    Next, I removed the cork, and proceeded to cut the fan holes in the wood.
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    Next, I ran into a bit of a hurdle....the fan screws that come with the Swiftech rads are 30mm long, and I was using 25mm fans....which would work fine under normal circumstances. However, we know that ducted fans are more efficient, and I had a 16mm wood wall that I was mounting on, my plan was to kill two birds with one stone by mounting the fans on the outside of the wall and use the wood itself as a 16mm duct to the radiator. The problem was the 30mm screws were now 16mm too short. The Japanese HW stores carry plenty of standard M3 and M4 screws/bolts, but Swiftech uses the less common M3.5 size, which they do not stock. After wasting 3 hours going to various HW stores all over town, the longest screws I could find were 20mm....not 45mm like I needed. So, I brainstormed a bit, I thought about tapping the holes. But knowing me, I'd screw one up and get mad....on top of the fact that I'd have to by a tap and more expensive screws. I thought a simpler solution would be to open the corners a bit to allow the fans to be mounted from the inner flange, instead of the outer. The original fan corner:
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    Now, with the hole on the outer flange opened a bit, and the Swiftech provided screw for size reference:
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    This would give me a depth of 16mm for the wall, plus 5mm for the inner fan flange, plus 1mm for the cork...or 22mm total. 3mm less than the original fan depth. Since my plan was to decouple the fans mechanically anyhow, this left a little buffer room for a neoprene pad to dampen vibration. The final assembly looks like this:
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    Shaving from drilling out 48 fan flanges :p:
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    Poking the screws through the drilled out flange, through a washer, punching through a 5mm thick peice of neoprene, and through the lower hole proved to be a PITA, so I sat down for some quality time with my wife and watched an episode of "The Event" and she helped me with the process :D
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    All finished:
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    Next, I just needed to mount everything on the wall:
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  6. miahallen

    miahallen Team IRONMODS - World Champions!

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    Here are a couple pics of the desk reassembled, the rig is on air for basic ops testing.

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    Next, I wanted to setup the loop and continue flushing & leak testing. First I drilled the top of the desk for the fill port:
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    This is the underside showing the hole near the rear of the desk:
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    The mounting thread on the fill port was not deep enough for the depth of the desktop, so I had to increase the diameter of the hole on the bottom side to effectively secure the fill port. I used a sanding wheel on my dremel to accomplish this :)
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    After that the fill port went in without issues:
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    The fill port feeds straight into the top of the res....but I'll probably shorten the tube about 1/2" to get the res to sit up closer to vertical. The res/pump will hang here with support only from the tubes. Does anyone see a problem with that?
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    I know this is non-standard and a lot of people will question my decision, but I'm setting up the loop with all four blocks (3xGPU & 1xCPU) in parallel. I'm doing this for routing simplicity and ease of use...and I'll determine if performance is sufficient once I get up and running. THis is what I'm referring to:
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    Here are some shots of the loop in its test configuration:
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    And here is a quick video which gives you an idea of the flow:
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    I think this single pump will work fine. And to keep noise low, I'll be having the mobo CPU fan header control the speed of the pump automatically with PWM control based on CPU temp. The fans will all be controlled manually with the custom PWM controller xXSebaSXx and Bobnova built for me :)

    3rd flush in progress....3 gallons of fresh distilled:

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    After this, I'll clean out the blocks before the final flush/fill/leak test.
    But that will have to wait until my next day off :p
     
  7. Jake123456

    Jake123456 Surprise!

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    Very nice so far, are you going to place something on the front like a cupboard door to hide the insides?
     
  8. miahallen

    miahallen Team IRONMODS - World Champions!

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    Yes, I'll be putting a door with a plexi window on front.
     
  9. miahallen

    miahallen Team IRONMODS - World Champions!

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    OK, I've got another brief update.....I'm very happy to report that the PWM controller that Bobnova and xXSebasXx built for me is working perfectly, and all the fans seem to be in sync and running exactly how I'd hoped :)

    I wired them all together with three common PWM lines, a single 12V connection, and a single ground. Then I terminated all the monitor lines except one, which I will plug into one of the fan headers on the mobo to keep track of the RPM of the fans on the wall.

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    Then I hooked up the PWM controller and tested....works great :D

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    Next (based on dengyong's advice) I disassembled all the blocks to see if then filtered out anything from the rads during the 1st flush.
    Top tip: if flushing from the tap like I did, put your blocks before your rads :rolleyes:

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    The CPU block was a mess, but the GPU block came out clean.

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    All disassembled

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    I have three eVGA backplates, and my intention was to use them in this build. But I didn't want the logos.

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    So with some acetone and a Q-tip, they were taken care of

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    GPU block mounting (self explanatory)

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    Now the time came for the backplate mounting, but it seems the eVGA backplates are not compatible with the EK block. The mounting screw heads are too big for the backplate mounting screw receptacle. So I drilled them out (except for the four corners of the GPU, which are big enough), and touched up the holes with a permanent marker (picture taken prior to black touch-ups)....but even still the backplate would not go one due to interference with the water block inlets/outlets :mad:

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    Any opinions? Should I modify the backplates again to make room for the water block, or should I abandon them?

    Next, I flipped over the card and heard something hit the table....it was this:

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    Uh oh, I thought....where did that come from. After scouring the card for a couple minutes, I found the resistor's home

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    ...and promptly soldered it back

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    So, two cards are now done, and I'll have the third finished shortly....I'll post another update later today :)

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  10. jrs77

    jrs77 Well-Known Member

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    You've got such a nice and small Sugo and now you build something as huge as this? :eyebrow:

    Overkill I say... OVERKILL!!! :thumb:
     
  11. HybridCore

    HybridCore Member

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    Pretty impressive. It would have been cool if you decided to go aluminum and acrylic. They had two or more like that in the CoolerMaster comp this year.
     
  12. miahallen

    miahallen Team IRONMODS - World Champions!

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    The MAX11L build is my road warrior....this is my office rig :D

    Thanks :thumb:
     
  13. miahallen

    miahallen Team IRONMODS - World Champions!

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    The rig is up and running :D

    The CPU is stress testing right now about 20C cooler than on air (mid 50s at 4.6GHz). This seems to support my theory that the CPU block would get plenty of flow....but I have more testing to know for sure. ;)

    Here are a few more pics to bring you all up to speed.

    I did these modifications to the backplate:
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    But these four screws were still in the way and making the backplate bulge....

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    so I could have looked for some with smaller heads to use instead (but I didn't find any in my shop), or I could cut the backplate to try to allow them space...this is the route I went, but the backplate got a bit chewed up in the process. Oh well, it wasn't meant to be :rolleyes:

    So, the GPU block now looks like this:

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    And my 1st assembly of the system with water cooling gear looked like this.

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    I had been planning to use an X-Fi soundcard for this build....

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    But apparently, the EK SLI bridge prevents the use of normal height PCI/PCIe cards :(
    I may remove the bridge later and use normal SLI fitting instead, but for now, I'll just use onboard audio.
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    As I mentioned earlier, the fans are all working well, and I'm getting a reading of 400RPM at minimum (and virtually silent), and 2600RPM at full tilt ;)

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    Last edited: 13 Jun 2011
  14. miahallen

    miahallen Team IRONMODS - World Champions!

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    Some initial thoughts about my PWM fan wall:
    At 0% the fans are barely spinning at around 400 RPM and dead silent......and I still get GREAT cooling :cool:

    At 100% the fans are all spinning at 2600RPM and the noise level is much higher.....but its a very "whooshy" sound, lots of wind noise, and none of that annoying high pitched squeeling or anything :D

    I'm stressing my 2600K at 5GHz right now with fans at minimum...at the wall, the power draw is about 650W....when I crank up the fans to max, the draw shoots up to over 800W :eek: 150W just for fans :rock:

     
  15. miahallen

    miahallen Team IRONMODS - World Champions!

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    My rough goal was to keep the CPU under 75C for 20 passes of LinX with the fans at minimum speed, and the pump being temp controlled by the mobo.

    CPU on air @ 4.6GHz - max temp - 67/71/73/69 (I realized 1/2 way through that my clock was an hour behind, which explains the 2+ hour stress test)
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    GPUs on air - max temp - 95/90/84
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    CPU on water @ 4.6GHz - max temp - 55/56/58/55 (thats in improvement of 12/15/15/14...and much quieter :cool:)
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    GPUs on water - max temp - 42/44/45 (thats an improvement of 53/46/39 degrees and MUCH MUCH quieter :D)
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    CPU on water @ 5.0GHz - max temp - 69/74/75/70 (not finished yet)
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  16. coolamasta

    coolamasta Folding@Home CC Captain 2010/11/12

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    Awesome!!! I like that built into the desk a lot :D
     
  17. Nanosec

    Nanosec absit iniuria verbis

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    Sub'd
     
  18. miahallen

    miahallen Team IRONMODS - World Champions!

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    Work continues, slowly but surely.

    Yesterday I worked on the dust filter for the fans....unfortunately, it's not gonna cut it. But I'm getting ahead of myself.

    I started with some 30x30mm pine and chopped it up to make the frame.
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    Four sides cut
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    I installed brakets at the four corners to hold the frame together
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    Frame complete
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    And a test fitting shows a perfect fit
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    First time I've ever used a router....worked very well :)
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    And then I sanded down everything and evened up the edges
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    Then I wrapped and stapled some linen in place
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    Completed filter
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    Now the downside....this fabric was the most breathable stuff I could get at the Joanne fabric place I went to in Burlington Washington when I was on vacation a few months ago, now I have to source a replacement....stretchy speaker grill cloth is what I have in mind....but I'll probably have to find it online.

    Next up was a bracket for the pump & res. A few people commented that they were concerned about the pump hanging from the desktop, so last trip to the HW store, this wooden sheft holder caught my eye and I thought it would be perfect.

    (pic was taken after I cut it down, sorry)
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    Mounted up, it looks great!
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    Last but not least, I've made a video which shows in detail the other issue I've been working through; power issues. I think I may have overestimated the power in my home, and underestimated the power needs of these three GPUs....

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DfgOwM7xIcU
     
    xXSebaSXx likes this.
  19. Dragonphreak

    Dragonphreak Member

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    MAX11L has been my inspiration for my upcoming build, and this thing is amazing. keep up the good work.
     
  20. xXSebaSXx

    xXSebaSXx Active Member

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    Heh... I've been following this build over at OCF for a while now Miah. It was about time you brought this beast over here as well.
     

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