40. BACK IN THE SADDLE
Sorry for the lag there, folks. Life happens and I had a busy few weeks with some work and family obligations. So back to it!
First off, thanks to the wonderful folks on OCN I was able to purchase some used mid-range components. I think at this point I should explain exactly what I'm doing here from a broader perspective.
This whole situation started because I had an old crap HP Compaq (2009 components) that was seriously lagging on productivity software, and couldn't play any remotely graphics-intensive games for me or my young kids. And with the prebuilt components, it wasn't upgradable either. I also had an even older self-built MSI/Athlon system mothballed (2004-2008 components) and an even older older self-built MSI system mothballed (2000-2002 components).
Original plan was to use one of the old beige boxes, buy a modest i3 processor, mobo, and RAM, and have a computer that could play the medium-level games we liked as well as run the higher-end productivity software I wanted to use. Then I realized the problems the beigecase had (sticky power buttons, cable routing, etc), and just bought a Carbide 400R for that build. Hence Pitchblende (sig rig) was born. https://www.overclock.net/t/1487041/build-log-project-pitchblende-getting-back-into-building
But all the modding you guys were doing here really caught my eye, and I had the beigebox there. Thus began this mod. But I really didn't have anything to put *in* it and no idea what I'd do with it after. Then I thought... "hey, why not make this a present for one of the small humans in your house?" So about halfway through the mod I began consulting with child #1 and getting feedback from them on what type of things they'd like. I've been using one of the old MSI mobos (the red one you've seen) for test fitting purposes.
Then I started watching the OCN Marketplace for older components. Basically anything that would provide excellent performance on games like SimCity, Kerbal Space Program, and Spore would do.
My first purchase was a Gigabyte GA-78LMT-USB3 mobo and FX6300 processor.
To that I added 8GB of Kingston HyperX 1600 and 4GB of Corsair M53 1600 RAM also purchased here.
And I added a CoolerMaster Hyper TX3 since it didn't have a stock heat sink fan.Then I found a damaged Carbide 200R case on Ebay for $35.
I didn't need another case. Why did I buy another case?
Well turns out that was fortunate, because my buddy's laptop died right after that, and he needed some time to save up for a replacement system. So I threw the FX6300, 12GB RAM, my old Thermaltake PSU, and a 500GB HDD in the case and gave it to him to use.
That got me to thinking though. I should build a second system for child #2. I plan on modding a case for them later as well. But it would be nice to have the components on hand. I could put them in the 200R case for that in the meantime (after I get it back from friend).
So I start watching OCN Markeplace, and picked up an MSI A88X-G41 with an A6-5400K CPU.
And then I grabbed an old Palit GTX480FGPU that the previous owner had done "The Mod" on to attach an Antec Kuhler
in place of the stock cooler.
And a Corsair HX520 PSU and a 128GB Samsung SSD.
And last of all an MSI GTX470 GPU. It should be arriving today.
Meanwhile, my buddy finally got the core components of his build, and returned the 200R / Gigabyte / FX6300 to me (temporarily keeping 8GB of the RAM).
So here we are. As of yesterday, I had enough components (except the GTX470 GPU that's still enroute, and some of the RAM) to have three complete systems running. All of which are miles ahead of the old HP Compaq but none of which are exactly state-of-the-art. What shall we do here?
Well how about we start off by sanding and priming that side-panel bumpout to see how bad my body filler job was. (Sorry for the fakeout!)
I started by wrapping some plastic pipe with 220 grit sandpaper, to try to get an even slope.
Then I sprayed self-etching primer on the metal and the body filler. My primary goal here was to make sure I could clearly see the imperfections and prep the metal. I learned from my last round that no matter how nice it looks once the body filler and spot putty is done, until you put a uniform color coat on there you will miss all sorts of issues.
And yes, there are all sorts of issues. But none of them are so bad that a bit more spot putty won't fix 'em. I think this is looking quite nice.
Now, while we wait for paint to dry let's do some component swapping and see what we have, shall we? Here's the case with the placeholder components in it:
First up, swap out the PSU:
And then remove the old mobo:
And install the "new" one:
I used the gap I had cut between the drive cage and the front fans to route all of the fan controller and front switches to the back side of the case. The bumpout should hide these nicely.
Note that I had already installed Ubuntu on the SSD when attached to the old MSI mobo. And it actually fired up as soon as I got all the cables connected without barfing all over me with hardware driver conflicts. I love Linux.
I've still got a lot of work to do. Going to replace the old IDE optical drive with a SATA drive to clean up the interior. Gawd ribbon cables are just a pain. And I need to build some interior panels (probably out of acrylic) to hide the cable management behind. And a lot of other accent touches and finish out the front panels of course. And the side window... and and and. But overall, I'm very pleased with how this is looking and performing.
Originally Posted by solBLACK
Take your time and keep up the great work! I'm fairly new to OCN, but I feel I can speak for everyone that we are excited for the final outcome.
Originally Posted by 4WDBenio
Yeah, I'm still on this ship. Beige is back!
Originally Posted by Buehlar
Awesome transfermation! Keep it up man...
Thanks man. I've been following your build closely and am very impressed.
Originally Posted by AlderonnX
Awesome so Far! I gotta get mine started now.
I can't wait to see what you do with your next beigemod, man. Seriously.
Originally Posted by Datsun
This looks great so far! I love the modified side panel you made! Subbed!
Thanks. I'm glad to be back on this after my two-week hiatus. Stay tuned, I expect to have more pics soon!