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How to: Mount a radiator behind your case w/o a radbox

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 
I find my PC modding habits to be incredibly contradictory, I will drop money on lots of prime hardware, GPUs to sling solder at and a over the top WC system, but when it came to mounting my WC setup I decided to come up with the cheapest and easiest solution available to me which in my opinion (minus all the scratches on my case/rads) look far better than a radbox.

All you need is:

-a case that with an 120mm back exhaust fan
-A radiator you want to mount
-Fans for the radiator (120mm)
-A spare 120mm fan in which the screw holes on each side are not connected
-4x 6-32 threading screws (size varies but usually over 1inch)
-8x 6-32 threading Nuts (optional)
-4x more screws (either threading for a back radiator or 6-32 threading w/ nuts, around 1/2 inch)
-alluminum spacers (optional)
-screw driver
-needle nose pliers (optional)


Option 1: Mount Radiator straight to a back exhaust fan

1) Screw the top fan to your radiator with a short screw (1/2 inch or under, this depends on width of your fan's plastic mounting walls) like so, so the screw mount only uses on of the mounting "feet" all the while making sure the airflow is going in the correct direction.

-in this case (since my radiator 6-32 threaded) I was able to use the hardware screws you would use in securing a HDD or a pci-e slot



2) Once the fan is mounted to the back of your radiator line up the 4 set of feet holes on the other side of the fan with a fan mounted on the back 120mm exhaust fan on your case. Then use the appropriate hardware to secure the two fans together.

there are several options for this:
-use the screws that come with fans (most risk of cracking plastic)
-bolt through with a 1/2-3/4 inch 6-32 screw and secure with a nut
-use whatever thread the radiator behind it is (if applicable)

-in this case I mounted to the back of another radiator so I used 6-32 threaded screws to mount onto my 120mm GTX radiator over my exhaust

-be patient securing them you may need to use something to prop up your radiator to line up the holes correctly, needle nose plier and hexagonal screws help a lot although you can use flathead screws and the side of a flathead screw driver like a level to tighten the screws



Final Product:






Method 2
: Back mounting with fresh air flow spacing

If you prefer not to directly stack the exhaust fan and your radiator or one radiator ontop of another you can create a gap between the two while still maintaining a solid mount.

1) Take 4x 6-32 threaded screws (length depends on the size gap you would like. You want to put the tip if the screw through the fan mounting holes (make sure you are doing this to the PULL side of the fan).Push the screw firmly through the hole until it is kind of wedged, it will barely go in due to the size of the screw, see below.



2) Now take the appropriate screw driver and begin to torque the screw, it should begin to make it's own threads through the plastic fan holes as you begin to push it through. Make sure the feet near the fan holes are not bending too much, apply pressure to counter act any warping to avoid cracking the plastic.



3) Once you get the screw all the way through, screw a nut onto the bolted through screw on the other side and tighten. Do this to all 4 sides.



4) Apply spacers if you would like and place another nut above that. Repeat with all 4.



5) Then place the 4 exposed parts of the screws through the fan mounted to your radiator and use a nut on the inside of the fan to secure the two fans together just like in the first method could put the screws though your case and secure with nuts and attach your radiator to the bolted through fan.



There are a number of options that, as long as you use the mounting technique from the first method , should work. I would avoid using incredibly heavy setups with this method seeing how the father back you mount it the more force is placed on the fan and hardware.


Hope this helped! Using the same method to mount the fans in method one you can also stack radiators that generally wouldn't be able to stack, like the swifty 320 and coolermaster 240 I stacked on my rig that are all mounted to a GTX 120.


Edited by tha d0ctor - 1/9/10 at 9:58pm
post #2 of 12
15 hours an no responses! sheesh, very nice man, there aren't a lot of ways to have a huge rad box with your WC system and make it look good, but you did!
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post #3 of 12
Yep. That's what I did. My case can fit one 320mm rad at the very top, but I couldn't fit two, so I just stuck one on the back of it.
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post #4 of 12
Wow! Is that enough radiators? Good Tutorial though. +Rep
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post #5 of 12
Wow, great tutorial! Thanks .
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post #6 of 12
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by imadude10 View Post
Wow! Is that enough radiators? Good Tutorial though. +Rep
There are never enough radiators, just the amount you can fit . I got the 240mm from a trade and replaced a 120mm swifty with that GTX. I have 3x 8800GTX's with waterblocks that I'm going to install that will be voltmodded so I figured the more rads the better.

that's primochill "red" tubing from frozencpu.com if you are interested

hope this helps some people out
post #7 of 12
I'm not familiar with WCing, but don't people mount rads on the back all the time? And isn't this really just a guide for the few people who have a 3 rads that are 3x120, 2x120, and 1x120?
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post #8 of 12
Damn that's an ugly way to LC. And not terribly efficient. Spend a butt load of money on rads and then right at the end save a few pennies and end up basically blocking 2/3rds of the airflow through the rads.

Weird.
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post #9 of 12
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheWolfe View Post
I'm not familiar with WCing, but don't people mount rads on the back all the time? And isn't this really just a guide for the few people who have a 3 rads that are 3x120, 2x120, and 1x120?

you don't have to stack rads, that's just how my rig is set up, you could jsut as easily do this with a single 240mm, a 360mm or a 480mm

Cyberdruid, unfortunately I'm constricted for space at the moment so I am unable to mount one of the rads on the stop of the case. Putting my hand behind the 3 different fans on the 3x 120mm rad though I can hardly feel a difference in airflow between the three. I installed the stacked 240mm just for yucks, IMO it was better than having it sit around doing nothing

plus both of the alrger rads on the back have a low FPI density
post #10 of 12
I hope your running some kind of corrosion inhibitor in your loop. That CM radiator is made out of aluminum.
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