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DIY CPU block, new to watercooling

post #1 of 15
Thread Starter 
Hi there, i'm new to the whole watercooling thing and i was hoping some of you could answer a few questions for me. First of all, i have been reading through the custom cpu block threads and found them very interesting, i have been thinking of trying myself in the coming months as a little project. I'm quite handy with wood based tools but have never done any metal work, i can learn quickly though, and was considering picking up a budget priced drill press to have a little play with. My only real questions are regarding the soldering of copper.

Could someone point me in the direction of a site or some other documentation explaining 'sweating' copper sheets/blocks together? I seriously think this would be the most challenging part of trying a DIY waterblock for me, as i have only limited experience soldering electrical components.

Also, is it common/difficult to engineer your own radiator setup? If so what methods do people typically use? Any examples?

I understand that the cost of tools and supplies here may outweigh the cost of a stock cpu block but aside from being fun, dangerous and messy, i would (if successful) eventually like to watercool at least three systems, and a saving would thus be made by doing it myself.

One last thing: Are the majority of people here also overclocking their systems? I'm not particularly interested in overclocking at this point, just in silently cooling my system to the lowest temps possible. (newer machines are like hair driers... i remember you could boot up a p200 without a heatsink and not suffer any problems!). So, anyone here simply watercooling alone, no overclocking?

Thanks for reading through my rather inarticulate post. I'm pretty knackered tonight, heh.

Cheers,

John
post #2 of 15
Well, The only people with watercooling that aren't overclocking, are the ones that are still leak testing.

As for block making, If you've got a good game plan and a good idea of what you want it to look like after everything is done and over with, Making one could be a breeze.

As for the radiator, You can't make your own that will compare to a professionally made one with a reasonable cost or size. Making the fins and channels and such then stuffing it all into an aluminium and/or copper skeleton would be pretty hard to my understanding...
post #3 of 15
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by ShawnMcGrail
Well, The only people with watercooling that aren't overclocking, are the ones that are still leak testing.

As for block making, If you've got a good game plan and a good idea of what you want it to look like after everything is done and over with, Making one could be a breeze.

As for the radiator, You can't make your own that will compare to a professionally made one with a reasonable cost or size. Making the fins and channels and such then stuffing it all into an aluminium and/or copper skeleton would be pretty hard to my understanding...
Cheers for the reply. I'll start having a look around at cheap radiators. Perhaps i could pick one up at a scrap yard?

I dont really think i could overclock my current setup much anyway really. Its a 2600 barton in an A7N8X-X. Reckon i could push it? Overclocking is something i would seriously consider after i'm finished setting up a nice cooling system. I'm hoping to upgrade to a 2x athlon64 this year and i would like to have a go then too... But like i said, the idea of building a watercooling system myself motivates me more than the overclocking side at the moment.

Cheers,

John
post #4 of 15
Well, I'm not too much of an AMD man, but apparently those 2600 Bartons go pretty high into the 2.3-6Ghz range with a moderate push.

I'd talk to someone like Xie67 about it, Seems like he knows more about AMD XP's then anyone else here.

As for the Radiator, Most likey a junk-yard, But what you'll be looking for is a heatercore, as they seem to perform the best for the price.

If you can find a Engine rad thats pretty small and has a decent fitting size, By all means try it!
post #5 of 15
Thread Starter 
Can i just ask what kind of solder you are all using to attach the bottom waterblock plate to the midsection?

Cheers,

John
post #6 of 15
Well, Theres no need to solder, All it does essentially is mess everything up requiring you to re-sand EVERYTHING.

Just get a rubber O-ring and a Tap & Die set to tap some holes through the block and top then thread a bolt for each corner, Or as many as you like.
post #7 of 15
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by ShawnMcGrail
Well, Theres no need to solder, All it does essentially is mess everything up requiring you to re-sand EVERYTHING.

Just get a rubber O-ring and a Tap & Die set to tap some holes through the block and top then thread a bolt for each corner, Or as many as you like.
This might sound stupid, but if i did that to the bottom plate, wouldn't the heat transfer go down?

By bottom plate i mean in fstfreddies (?) example, where the water channel is cut straight through a copper block with a drill press, and then a 2mm copper plate attached to the bottom for contact with the cpu.

Forgive me if this is what you meant, lol

Cheers again for the help

John
post #8 of 15
Welcome aboard mate. Silver solder is simple if you can adjust to the acid fumes.

Some waterblocks are actually silver soldered, which requires precise zero tolerance mill work as the solder bonds the materials rather than fills gaps. Silver solder requires a torch as it's melting point ranges anywhere from 356º - 1878ºF, depending on the amount of silver it contains. Rubber O rings, hex head bolts and Lucite top-plates make it a more forgiving science.
Just remember that quality grade copper may be more spendy but it rules hands down over aluminum for thermal trasfer.
  
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post #9 of 15
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dryadsoul
Welcome aboard mate. Silver solder is simple if you can adjust to the acid fumes.

Some waterblocks are actually silver soldered, which requires precise zero tolerance mill work as the solder bonds the materials rather than fills gaps. Silver solder requires a torch as it's melting point ranges anywhere from 356º - 1878ºF, depending on the amount of silver it contains. Rubber O rings, hex head bolts and Lucite top-plates make it a more forgiving science.
Just remember that quality grade copper may be more spendy but it rules hands down over aluminum for thermal trasfer.
I would have thought cutting out a regular enough channel for an o ring would be a lot more difficult than just soldering the pieces together. If i'm wrong then thats excellent, but could i do this with hand tools and a drill press?

Cheers,

John
post #10 of 15
Have a dremel?

If so, You could DEFINATLY make a sweet O-ring channel with Dremel bit #107, I've got it and use it for engraving in plexi, And at the rate it cuts, I'm pretty sure it would take to copper too!

http://www.toolbarn.com/product/dremel/107/
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