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post #388 of (permalink) Old 09-28-2018, 10:36 AM - Thread Starter
Barefooter
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Mounting the HDD Waterblocks and LED Lighting

I have finished polishing the second hard disk drive waterblock. Although I only did the two large flat surfaces and the port edge that shows, it still took over three hours to do that! No point in polishing the inside of the second waterblock, or the other areas that won’t show at all.

As discussed earlier the two middle holes in these waterblocks won’t be used because there is no screw hole in that location on the hard drives. Rather than leave those middle screw holes on the waterblock open. I’m going to put a “fake” screw heads there.

I cut two screws short, put some clear silicon in the middle holes of the outer waterblock and put the cut-off screws in those holes, and left it to dry overnight.




I just let the silicon drip underneath.




With a razor blade I cut the extra silicon off the bottom.




Here’s the waterblock with the “fake” middle screws.




I picked up two sheets of Arctic 1mm Thermal Pad 145mm x 145mm. The large square is what I cut to place on the hard disk drives.




I’ve seen people just cover the circuit board and spindle area on the smaller hard drives that have webbing with recessed areas around the spindle area. These drives are mostly flat so I’m going to cover the entire area.




I used a hole punch and X-Acto knife to cut out the screw hole areas.




Carefully lower the waterblock onto the hard drive… and make sure not to try and tighten the middle screws




The waterblock installation instructions state, “thermal pad not included”… and there is no mention of what thickness to use! The 1mm thickness turned out to be perfect. It makes full contact and as you can see the waterblock is not quite up against the edge of the hard drive with the screws tight.




Here’s the hard drives installed in the cage.




Next I need to make the custom LED harnesses. I need six white 5mm LEDs to fill both waterblocks. Luckily I had exactly six DarkSide 5mm LEDs on hand in my box of miscellaneous LEDs. I start by cutting off the connector and removing the sleeving that it comes with.

I then soldered two LEDs together at the end along with the appropriate length extension wire to reach the Splitty9 on the other side of the case. I put a fan connector on the end which plugs right into the Splitty9.




Here’s with the finished LED harnesses, three different lengths to match at the other end. Each harness does two of the six LEDs in the HDD waterblocks. Now the Splitty9 that I’m using to power LEDs has every header filled.

The Splity9 has nine headers total. Here’s how they are filled:
  1. Reservoir Main side – 3 LEDs
  2. Reservoir Main side – 3 LEDs
  3. Reservoir Back side – 3 LEDs
  4. Reservoir Back side – 3 LEDs
  5. Pump Top – 2 LEDs
  6. CPU Block – 2 LEDs
  7. HDD Waterblock – 2 LEDs
  8. HDD Waterblock – 2 LEDs
  9. HDD Waterblock – 2 LEDs
Total of 22 LEDs






Looks great








Now to test the LEDs to make sure they all work ok.








To help with the installation of yet another wad of wiring, I put a zip tie on the back of the cage and around the LED wires. I’ll have to feed this down behind the cage, behind the front radiator on this side, through an opening in the middle case wall and down under the reservoir on the other side where the Splitty9 is.




This HDD cage just barely fits in here! If you look at where the cage mounts to the front fan mount portion, you can see where I drilled more holes so I could lower the cage portion lower than the stock mounting location. The bottom stock hole is visible above the bottom screw.






You can also see that I’m wearing a green t-shirt while taking these shots. Notice how the different angles reflect the green of my shirt on different edges of the HDD waterblock.








The hardest part of this installation was plugging the LED harness connectors into the Splitty9 because at this point is not easy to get to. I had to use some long needle nose pliers.

Now I still have to make a custom power harness for these hard drives, sleeve some sata cables, and figure out exactly how I’m going to plumb this. I’ll have to mock up the plumbing first, to figure out how the wire harness has to be made.

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