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IKIKUINTHENUTZized Navig Bench Station

post #1 of 41
Thread Starter 


Welcome to the mod Log of the IKIKUINTHENUTZized Navig Bench Station! This build was actually finished 11/10 but now I’ve decided to get the write up done and finished! Unlike most work logs where the log is the flow of what is being worked on at time of the post, I’ve decided to finish the build first then explained each part of the built of how it was put together for that particular section. Everything is not in chorological order but it is organized into sections of the build.

Table of contents: (Click on these to skip to a section)
1. Introduction & Thank you to those who helped me
2. What is a Navig Bench Station & how I acquired it
3. What’s going to be inside the system?
4. Prepping the body
5. Powder coating (Thanks CyberDruid of OCN!)
6. Reinforcing the structure design & adding new transport feature ( Thanks Cyberdruid of OCN!)
7. Adding new feet
8. Cabling re-sleeve with an uncommon sleeve
9. Painting the radiator
10. New switches
11. FC5 paint job
12. Dye tubing into custom color
13. Custom pump damper/pump mod
14. Modding the PSU fan
15. Custom motherboard LED sign (Thank you Djayness of EpicPCs)
16. Modding the ram (Thank you Djayness of EpicPCs)
17. Making the video card and motherboard sexy
18. Upgrading the hard drive area
19. Radiator upgrade
20. Cable management
21. Other honorable mentions (WIP)
22. Aftermath
23. Photo Op (WIP)
24. Over clocking (in progress)

Edited by IKIKUINTHENUTZ - 1/29/11 at 3:30am
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post #2 of 41
Thread Starter 
Introduction

This Mod to improve the existing design of the Navig Bench Station into something more practical use of a computer enthusiast and into something that is more appeasing to the eye of the beholder. Due to limitations of my skills and limited tool set, I had to hire help during the process.

The idea for modifying the station came to me when I was redesigning my room into something more modern industrial look. I figure a computer case that represented that idea was good however it needed to be something uncommon and computer cases were something I’ve seen everywhere. I needed something new to expose the hardware to give off that industrial look without the Plexiglas and without the overall encasing. Fortunate, when I was cleaning out the closet, I found a gem that I purchased long ago that would work perfectly! However, it needed a major facelift before I allowed it to be inside my room.



My old drawing when I was brainstorming and I also thought it would be nice to add some water-cooling, but adding such thing presented its challenges.

A Special Thanks To,
Navig - Guy around on PC forums (I have no idea if he still does his thing)
For being the original creator and designer of these awesome handmade Tech stations. Also sold me part upgrades for the Techstation

Cyber Druid – Artistan on OCN (retired)
For having Powder Coating assets and great skill in metal cutting.

Djayness – EpicPcs Company Owner
For the awesome CNC job of the Custom LED sign and custom ram plaques.
Edited by IKIKUINTHENUTZ - 1/3/11 at 2:15am
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post #3 of 41
Thread Starter 
What is a Navig Bench Station & how I acquired it?




It’s a benching station made by a computer forums guy by the name Navig with one goal in mind, DIY Low Cost Benching Station. In 07 he created his own line of Tech Stations and sold them through classified sections of various selective forums. The guy basically did some amazing work through computer case modifications in the past since 2003 and he had lots of skill using power tools. I do not know if he still makes and sells them but last I heard he did some major improvements to the lineup.

This is the only build log of the station that’s on a forum of the specific one he made.
http://www.overclockers.com/forums/s...d.php?t=528477

The original one he had made on abit forums died when abit shut down the forums and quit the motherboard business.

This particular station I own was sold to me long ago (maybe in 09?) by another computer user who bought one off of him directly back in 08. Here is the image of the guy using it before he sold it to me.



This station I purchased was indeed fact the second one Navig had ever build. I had purchased one of the original series of his benching stations.
Edited by IKIKUINTHENUTZ - 1/3/11 at 2:01am
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post #4 of 41
Thread Starter 
What’s inside the system?

Hardware:
Intel i7 860 2.8ghz socket 1156
EVGA P55 FTW 132-LF-E657-KR
MSI R5870 Lightning
GeIL Black Dragon 4GB (2 x 2GB) DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800)
Enermax Revolution 1050w
2 X OCZ Agility 60gb SSD
OCZ 60gb Agility 2 SSD

Water cooling parts:
Swiftech Apogee XT
ViperJohn Viperfang VII GPU block
Thermochill HE 120.3
Bitspower Fittings Assortment of elbows and barbs
Danger den 90 degree angle block
Laing DDC 3.2
XSPC Laing DDC Acetal Top
EK Reservoir
Bolt Clamps
Tygon R-03603 7/16 ID 5/8 OD
Un Designs Absolute REV3
Distilled water
Mayhelms Dye Candy Red
Primochill UV black dye
PTS Gel-Stuff Vibration Absorption Block
PTFE Thread Tape

Peripherals, Mod, Extra parts
Lamptron FC5
Lamptron RED led ring and Dot case switches
Lamptron Case Handles CH-2
Xigmatek Cuirassier-N002
3 X Icydock SSD enclosure
Nylon Cable Sleeving
6 X Yate loon 120mm High speed
MicroCool PPL and MOSFET chipset heatsinks
3x Nexus Beam Air
Random Foam Thingy
Cable Clips
3m Mounting tape
Stainless Pop Rivets
And many more that I won’t list



Edited by IKIKUINTHENUTZ - 1/3/11 at 2:01am
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post #5 of 41
Thread Starter 
Prepping the body

Navig used MDF wood with polyurethane just sprayed on for the main body. Nothing really went into painting. I wanted to use white for the main color and I wanted to make sure my paint job had the most smooth and flat surface as possible. Simply I could have just bought white spray paint and slap it on but where’s the effort in that? Instead I went for the frustrating and time consuming route, traditional Paint!



Basically I went; Clean, Primer, Sand, Clean, primer, Sand, Clean, Prime, Sand for a complete week on 1 MDF board

Primer went from this


Found height imperfections


Resand!


Final Sand


Then I added white latex and some water based paint sealant and wait for it to dry. The results were a nice surface with latex texture and completely flat


The hilarious part was I had to do this twice for 2 pieces of MDF boards!
Edited by IKIKUINTHENUTZ - 1/3/11 at 2:02am
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post #6 of 41
Thread Starter 
Powder coating

The aluminum bars were plain and that was unacceptable. Initially I spray painted all aluminum pieces but the quality was not cutting it out for me.


So I decided to buy Cyberdruid’s Powder coating service on OCN forums and MY GOD the results were phenomenal! Let the picture do all the talking!







Powdercoated Hammer Black = Perfect

Cyberdruid!, U THE MAN!
Edited by IKIKUINTHENUTZ - 1/3/11 at 2:02am
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post #7 of 41
Thread Starter 
Reinforcing the structure design & adding new transport feature

Now wanting to add water-cooling to the build was actually challenging since the structure had many potential weaknesses if added weight was put on and pulled upwards on some sections. Yes I know MDF is strong but I wanted extra insurance just in case some crapshoot happens.



As you can see, I installed the Lamptron CH-2 handels without any issues, however I was worried that, that’s the sections that will break off if it was too heavy. I got 2 steel bars from a local hardware store and measured it outside by side. The idea was simple, instead of bolting the brand new handles through the MDF, why not bolt them through the MDF and the metal bars in which are attached to the structure of the station? This would completely eradicate my worries and give that extra structure support when being transported.

When CyberDruid was doing powder coating for me, I also bought another service from him which is to cut me special aluminum bars with specific drilled points. Needless to say, he made them for me and also powder coated them



I attached them on with Black oxidized bolts and nuts. Bolted into the structure and I also added an additional L bracket attached by rivet into the support bar



VICTORY!!!



IT WORKS!

For the original structure, Navig popped riveted some aluminum rivets into the structure. Seeing how that doesn’t cut for me, I decided to change them all into Stainless steel pop rivets for that extra strength and that kick ass look. You can also see those new rivets in the images before.



Done Yet? No
I upgraded the threads to Knife inserts

Top is the new, bottom is the old, much stronger hold for heaviness.
Edited by IKIKUINTHENUTZ - 1/3/11 at 2:03am
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post #8 of 41
Thread Starter 
Adding new feet/top

I wasn’t too thrilled with Navig’s solution with the feet. He simply used cheap plastic end caps, fitted them on, then done. Low cost solution yes but not my standards. The search to replace the feet was a pain in the ass, not many stores sell such items to fit ¾ steel square bars and make feet.




Example of me trying this type of feet, it was ok but I wanted something better.

I soon struck luck, Mcmastercarr website had something perfect for me but the item was hidden under differ names and for different purpose. The damn accursed thing took me weeks to find.





I hammered that baby in and it was a completely snug fit. Perfecto!

For the top of the bars, I didn't like the over head covering the bar because it made it feel cheap. What I used instead was just end plugs while covering the top with maximum exposure of the nice hammer finish I have.

Edited by IKIKUINTHENUTZ - 1/3/11 at 2:03am
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post #9 of 41
Thread Starter 
Cabling re-sleeve with an uncommon sleeve

Sleeve cables are practically the basics of pc mod nowadays. The plan at first was simple, buy non fray or MDPC-X sleeve, sleeve power supply cables, and call it a day. However these sleeves despise it’s tripe overlay design were very stiff and actually abrasive if rubbed on a edge for too long. I had to find something else for a Bench Station since a Bench Station under goes hardware change commonly and that means moving power cables a lot against the edges.

Nylon Multifilament Braided Sleeve is my perfect choice. Expensive as hell but it was perfect. It’s a sleeve that’s practically cloth. It resists automotive fluids and offers excellent abrasion resistance
Soft and pliable, sound perfect for a water-cooling system with lots of cable movement!


Comparison to non fray

Laboring with the stuff is 20 times harder than the traditional sleeves, it does not expand for #%^*!
The metal plugs kept snagging on to the weaves, I had to first tape up the metal plugs then slide it in then I could get it fit, added glue to the ends and heat shrink over the glues ends. It was a lot of work but the prize! Also to add, Enermax didn’t make sleeve their power supplies easy either, they thought it was wise the share the lines outside of the psu and tangle the lines Inside the psu



The Struggle!



The End





It looks damn nice.

Of course I learned the biggest flaw about it; it’s a bastard to clean when it gets dirty!
Edited by IKIKUINTHENUTZ - 1/3/11 at 2:04am
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post #10 of 41
Thread Starter 
Painting the radiator

Oh boy I bought a used Thermochill HE-120.3 and it was BEAT up and it need a total remake.


Sanded, stripped


I used Bondo to even it out and fill in the holes


White paint for fins and black epoxy, Nice huh?

NOT GOOD ENOUGH!!!!!

I need it to match that sexy powder coating but what?

IT’s HAMMER Time!!





Perfect Hammer finish spray job, perfect! All on top of Epoxy Paint for water resistance, nice.
Edited by IKIKUINTHENUTZ - 1/6/11 at 3:52am
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