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[Build Log] Asking for advice. First Water-cooling Loop/Case Mod

post #1 of 19
Thread Starter 
This will be my first water-cooling loop, and don't have the money to upgrade my case yet... so, I've decided to shove it into my THOR case.
As this is my first case mod AND loop, I will probably be asking for advice in this thread as well. I'm about 50% of the way through the mod already, so here is the upload.
The drive bays/hdd cage had to be removed. I will be mounting the SSD in the case, but the standard mech. drives will be using BLACX external hard drive adapter. Actually very convenient considering how much backing up I have to do. I have to thanks my brother for 'letting me use it'. (he is never getting it back)

I unfortunately do not have the money for a GPU block at this time, so that will not be in this build log. Also, the only material I do not have is the tubing, which is on it's way at this moment.

The 360 wouldn't fit without some modifications, even after the HDD case and the drive bays were removed, so here we go.
Front case mod (Click to show)



Making the bracket for the front 360 rad
Front Bracket (Click to show)




This is the final look after all of the work is done. The bracket still needs to be mounted onto the cage it'self, seeing as I'm not 100% sure of the loop diagram.



These fins had to be cut in order to fit the fans underneath the top attachment and still be able to open. This was my very first attempt at ever using a dremel tool ^^
Top fins for 260 rad (Click to show)

This is the top of the case to show the look of the fans, they act as vents, in the sense that they open and shut..




These are just pictures of the clearance of the top radiator... This is just pull configuration. There really isn't room for push/pull. I had to mod the top to fit in the fans, so I was pushing it just to get the pull in.
Top 240 Rad (Click to show)



These are just photos of the location of the reservoir. Photos with res mounted (Click to show)



So, time for questions... The loop, I plan on having it go in this route... Res, pump, 360 radiator, 240 radiator, cpu block, gpu block (when I finally get it) then back to res. This it configuration doable? I can't imagine the system doing very well when it comes to bubbles with the 360 rad in that location, or how the pump will do while pumping directly up... but honestly, I haven't the faintest clue. Any hints? pump location (Click to show)
post #2 of 19
Thread Starter 
Bump, looking for advice.
post #3 of 19
Your loop is fine the way it is. You don't need to worry about the pump 'directly' pumping up. Its a closed loop system so mathematically its all the same. It is only when the total net change in elevation is different does it affect pump performance.

With regards to air bubbles, it takes time to bleed the loop. There are some strategies to decrease the time it takes (such as tilting the case.) Remember to equalize the pressure of the system by removing the top fill port of the res (where the air collects.)
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post #4 of 19
Thread Starter 


Alright, so this is a decent enough layout?
I've planned this for so long, finally getting into WC is exciting. +rep btw
post #5 of 19
Great modifications, layout looks good. Only catch I see is filling/refilling the loop. Since water seeks its own level, you should make provisions to fill the loop from the top radiator (or above it) otherwise you will get a flood. Also, a drain line is not required, but very handy.
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post #6 of 19
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mainsil View Post

Great modifications, layout looks good. Only catch I see is filling/refilling the loop. Since water seeks its own level, you should make provisions to fill the loop from the top radiator (or above it) otherwise you will get a flood. Also, a drain line is not required, but very handy.
Thanks, means a lot ^^

With a closed loop, the res (when the pump is powered) should allow the water to go through the system while keeping the water level from rising in the res. As long as the loop is closed, I can leave the res open without having any kind of leaks.

I'm mostly going off of Juggalo's videos, along with a bit of Linus Tech Tips. I did test already to make sure that it shouldn't flood. I simply filled it, plugged the top of the res, and had 90 degree elbows off of the side, and made sure it would hold water in a closed loop. Kind of hard to explain, but worked great. The moment I broke the loop (unscrewed the top slightly) it would begin to flood out of the elbows.
Edited by Bridden - 11/16/13 at 12:04am
post #7 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bridden View Post

Thanks, means a lot ^^

With a closed loop, the res (when the pump is powered) should allow the water to go through the system while keeping the water level from rising in the res. As long as the loop is closed, I can leave the res open without having any kind of leaks.
You are quite welcome. The res is part of the loop so I would think that if it is open, so is your loop. However, when I had the radiator on top in my rig, If the pump was running, I could open the res without the water spilling everywhere, doing that with the pump off is a different matter.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bridden View Post

I'm mostly going off of Juggalo's videos, along with a bit of Linus Tech Tips. I did test already to make sure that it shouldn't flood. I simply filled it, plugged the top of the res, and had 90 degree elbows off of the side, and made sure it would hold water in a closed loop. Kind of hard to explain, but worked great. The moment I broke the loop (unscrewed the top slightly) it would begin to flood out of the elbows.
I really liked Juggalo's videos. Interestingly, it really doesn't matter where the res is in the loop when it is closed. The refill port just needs to be at the highest level when you break the loop to fill/refill. There are lots of ways to solve the issue. Since fill/refill operations are relatively rare, you could even set up a layout where the fill/refill point is only the high point when you need it (e.g. tilt the rig, or use a flexible tube with a valve on the end that you lift above the radiator and open for refill operations only.
Edited by Mainsil - 11/16/13 at 9:25am
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post #8 of 19
Thread Starter 
http://youtu.be/krgK2dcxJ5g?t=14m59s
This is a video of Linus filling a loop (closed) with no problems, as long as the pump ALWAYS has water in it. He also goes over how to knock the bubbles loose.
post #9 of 19
Yes, the pump is going the whole time the loop is open (top of res is off), once the liquid is above the level of the res. It can be done but it is tricky. If he were to turn the pump off with that res open, there would be a bit of a mess. Also, notice that he has the res sitting outside of the case, so even if the pump were to turn off, the resulting leak would be outside the case and wouldn't harm the components.
Edited by Mainsil - 11/16/13 at 12:45pm
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post #10 of 19
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mainsil View Post

Yes, the pump is going the whole time the loop is open (top of res is off), once the liquid is above the level of the res. It can be done but it is tricky. If he were to turn the pump off with that res open, there would be a bit of a mess. Also, notice that he has the res sitting outside of the case, so even if the pump were to turn off, the resulting leak would be outside the case and wouldn't harm the components.

I'm pretty sure he has the pump off at several times during the process after the water level is above the opening. The pressure of the closed loop will keep it from pouring back out of the res. For example, in this video the guy clearly cuts the pump off at several times during the process, and the water does not surge back above the water level in the res due to the closed loop's pressure.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=777JcqPVgLU

It will only find it's level at the point of the highest inlet/outlet.
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