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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
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Updated Coolers

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This is my first time building a computer this extensively, and for the most part, it's been built on a very small budget. All the money I had was spent on the actual computer parts, and then everything else you see, has been built from scratch with resources left behind from where I work. Everything is hand made on a drill press and table saw, all soldering by hand. In all likelihood, it will be done when I migrate the hardware to "Heavy Rain", My scratch build.

Right now, it's overclocked to 4.683Ghz on a daily basis, and runs at 5.016Ghz for the turbo overclock. I'm always looking for ways to get temps down without spending much money, and the evaporative cooler (bong cooler) was my choice to help with that. I designed it to fit into my case, where it takes the place of the drive bays and also supports the front of the power supply. The sleeved wiring inside the case I tried to give off an effect of water flowing, after all the project is themed around rainfall. Exterior-wise the only thing that has changed on the case is the addition of two high flow fans, and all chrome trim pieces re-made in black brushed steel. Oh and a large water cooler mounted to the top.
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Something not shown is the exterior tank setup that essentially triples the water capacity of the computer. The exterior tank doesn't do anything in terms of heat exchange, but it does provide me a way to fill and drain the cooler, and to easily maintain the water levels. I keep the bottom of the external tank level with the bottom of the cooler, so that way their water levels match regardless of where the two are located. The external tank is about 10 feet away, and this does nothing to affect the performance of the evaporator. I chose not to use any special coolant, and for daily use I just use tap water, pretty much because I can't afford to evaporate bottled water or dyed coolant etc. At the moment, if the evaporator fans are running on full, with the computer running at full load, it can evaporate roughly a gallon of water every 12 hours. I keep the windows in this room open at all times, so humidity is not an issue (And likely never will be).

Because the top cooler can saturate so much water, water level will drop from roughly an inch below the top of the baffle to about an inch above the barb going to the pump. In order to maintain more water in the system without changing the bottom cooler's dimensions, I added another barb to bottom cooler. This barb is located at the max water level in the cooler. What I can now do is turn the computer on, let the water saturate the top cooler, then add more water to the bottom cooler. When the computer is shut off, and all the excess water that I added to get the running water level back up, will simply flow though the barb to a overflow bottle I keep on the floor. Keep in mind this is great for long term runs, and prevent water from going anywhere it shouldn't.

Table Of Contents:
1) My initial Build
2) First Reservoir Design
3) My First Reservoir
4) The First Time I thought It Was Done
5) First Reservoir Running + Video
6) New Case Lighting Prototype
7) Evaporative Cooler Design Prototype #1
8) Evaporative Cooler Design Prototype #2
9) Building New Case Lighting
10) LED's all done and installed.
11) Second Evaporative Cooler

First post. Here's some background.

I've been into computers since about 1992 (I was 2 years old) but have always had laptops. Back in October, I was fixing a bent pin on the LVDS cable connector on the motherboard of my Asus G71G, and due to my massive hangover from the night before, forgot to pull the battery out, accidentally shorted two pins together, and burnt out the power management circuitry thus ending my career of high-end laptops. So that's where I've been, and this is where I am now. I'm in college for electronics engineering, and already am a certified automotive mechanic, and needed a new computer on a budget. (I Still use my 2007 Macbook Pro with linux for general everyday stuff though)

So this is what I started with:
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Asus P8Z68-V Pro motherboard
Intel I7 2600K Overclocked to 5.0 GHz (1.456v, 104.5 BCLK, 48x multiplier)
8Gb Corsair Vengeance DDR3 RAM
MSI GTX560 Twin Frozr II OC
Intel 320 series 80GB SSD (used as a cache for a 1TB drive)
Corsair H60 Liquid cooling
Thermaltake TR2 RX 750W power supply

I like it.
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Was missing something though.

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That's better. But still not that great looking. Now this is about the time where I discovered this forum, and the case gallery thread.

So I bought a "Apevia X-JUPITER G-Type" in blue. Now unfortunately, I don't have many photo's of the case before I started to mod it, but it looked exactly like the pictures off newegg. For some reason the first thing I did was replace the blue LED's on the front logo with a UV LED and a pink LED I had laying around. I got two 12" UV tubes, and a cheapo Blue UV cabling kit through newegg and a couple hours later had this:

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I did some electrical work to make taking the thing apart easier. You can't really tell from the photo, but I got rid of all but one 4-pin molex connector because I honestly think they are bulky and ugly as heck. The one 4-pin molex connector goes to the front panel which then redistributes all the wiring to the rest of the computer's fans, lighting, etc. Basically I can strip the case down to the frame and not have solder/desolder any wires.

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Now this is when I started to overclock the processor. Disabled hyper-threading, got it up to 5.016GHz stably and decided to try and modify the H60 cooler. And I did. And I do not recommend doing it, because it was a pain in the ass. But anyways I got it working beautifully now, and it helps keep the case temps lower by moving the radiator outside and far away from the case (long hoses so at school I can stick the radiator outside the window in the winter). I forgot to take any decent pictures of this after I did it, but here are some now, after I painted the case with some strange paint I found in the basement.
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And this is how it sits right now:

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Tomorrow I'm getting in a shipment of neon blue and greyish silver paracord, 4 feet of UV-blue heat shrink, and all the molex connectors in UV-blue to replace those on the PSU. And then I will go to work sleeving all the wires individually on the PSU. So expect more photo and etc tomorrow when that stuff comes in.

Ummm and I guess I'll share a little more about myself, I love Volvo, I own a 1998 S70 T5 that I converted to manual and rebuilt for track racing and as a daily driver, a 1969 Volvo 164 as a restoration project, as well as a 1993 Kawasaki ZX7R. This thing is thing is my pride and joy, and has gone through a lot of modifications.
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I used to be able to start it with a pin number
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So uhhh yeah. let me know if I am doing anything wrong or against forum rules, and I will try to make things right.

Oh and the name's Ben. Nice to meet you all.
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Second part: todays's work

firstly, here is a better shot of how the front panel is wired:

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Decided to try and hide the cables better:
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I was still waiting for UPS and USPS to show up, so I started prepping the power supply for the paracord. Now I've never owned a desktop computer before this one let alone have any experience sleeving things, so go easy. I used a simple method to mark individual wires. For instance wire #14 would be "dash dot dash dash dash dash". It worked really well for me.

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My fancy pin remover and thing to help thread the wires through the paracord:

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UPS showed up finally, so I started sleeving the CPU power supply, the red connector i have no idea why I used:

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USPS showed up with some more stuff:

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How I managed to not use heat shrink on the paracord, thanks to someone off this forum I think:

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Couple hours later and really sore fingers, had this, which I don't think is too bad for a first try:

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Started rebuilding the tower:

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Made some new stuff for the external radiator:

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Started to use heat shrink for the first time in my life (literally, and I love it now.):

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Still assembling and arranging the wires:

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And done for the day:

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Very nice! Was gonna chime in and say you needed some custom cables, but then I scrolled down and saw the rest of the photos
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
THanks, I have no idea what to do next, as money is still tight. I'm thinking about developing a real-time stats display somewhere inside the case
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Quote:
Originally Posted by NeighborhoodGeek View Post

Looks awesome for a first go at it. Honestly... I'd say it looks like it wasn't your first rodeo at all.
Great work!
I've built computers before in the sense of MB + CPU + PSU + GPU + RAM + HDD = Computer, but never owned one of my own. I've definitely fell in love with this stuff in the short time i've had it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Quote:
Originally Posted by LtStinger View Post

Well done sir, love the blue. What are the two heat-sink looking blocks on the wiring of the front panel there? (Red, black and yellow wires going to them)
And, with your mod to the H60, do you have any kind of mount system for mobility, or conversion to be compacted?
The heat sink things are the fan controllers for the intake and exhaust fans. The MOSFETs they use to control fan speed need to be cooled I guess. The H60 mod is just temporary. I wanna find a resevoir and rework the whole setup. Eventually real water cooling, but not till summer at least.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeffro422 View Post

Welcome to OCN
I assume you're on VS?
I own a 96 Platinum with a 3inch TBE, cone filter, mbc. It's fun
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Yup same username. The plats are nice looking cars, and always fun
 

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Very nice! Really like your cooler mod.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
I've got an idea on the reservoir. I've got some left over bullet proof panels from some industrial productions lines so I can use those for materials. Going to go learn google sketchup now.

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
my idea for a reservoir to fit in the 3.5" drive bay area:

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inlet will be on the top, coolant will fall off alternating edges and pool on the bottom, where it will also have the outlet barb.
THis sketch has been superseded by a newer version, that will be easier to make, look better, and should be less leak prone.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Revised version. gonna have a protoype made up monday hopefully. have to rip cabinets out of a house tomorrow. It's all going to be clear lexan, not those funky colors.

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Quote:
Originally Posted by InitialDriveGTR View Post

Revised version. gonna have a protoype made up monday hopefully. have to rip cabinets out of a house tomorrow. It's all going to be clear lexan, not those funky colors.
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Nice! I just saw a build log like this somewhere recently. I'll see if I can find it for you.
 
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