So first off, I have to offer up some major THANKS! to the Dallas Makerspace, a local community of hackers, builders, and makers. Their collective knowledge and expertise has been most welcome. Most importantly, they have the tools I would not have otherwise had access to that will make this build go quicker and MUCH more smoothly. Hackerspaces are popping up in most major cities in the US (can't speak for Europe, but I'm sure they're around). Find them, join them, make stuff.
So first order of business, I hopped on the laser cutter and started with the tray that will house the illumination for the midplate.
There is only about a 1/2 inch or so of clearance between the expansion slot covers in the rear of the case and the PSU, so every millimeter I can get is a good thing. This mock-up is done in 1/8" acrylic, but I could probably go to 1/16 if I made it with more fingers in the box. As it is, it's a perfectly functional prototype.
The downside is that since I don't have much in the way of clearance I will probably have to solder in the LEDs manually instead of picking up a strip, as most strips will likely still be too wide.
Having cut the tray, I mocked up and cut the shroud. This is unfinished aluminum, which I will either have anodized, or will coat with 3M carbon fiber Di-Noc.
Lastly, I went ahead and cut a quick test piece for the replacement for the roof mesh:
This piece unfortunately doesn't quite fit so I'll have to do it again. Also, the Dremel doesn't make the cut as wide as I want it, but it's too narrow to fit even a small file into without just a ton of work. If anyone has any suggestions on how to widen a dremel slot cut in sheet metal, please let me know.
Next up, I'll be tackling the side panel to do something about the mesh over there. Stay tuned!