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Water Cooled Cube

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Do both of the fans leave you enough space in the cube? Will you test it also with just one fan?
 
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Nice work, did you use a special countersink bit on the those holes or just a larger drill bit?

That is very rough and just from a scrap piece.....it's done with a huge drill bit though!
 
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Do both of the fans leave you enough space in the cube? Will you test it also with just one fan?

Yes, there is just enough space all around and I'll be constructing a tunnel to have a smooth flow out of the rear of the cube. I have a design in my head for that to be able to be spring mounted to the perspex case at the back and can be moved in and out of the hole in the Cube case to allow there to be a good seal to the fans inside the case.

I'll also be modifying the base of the Cube to make it flow more air, so there should be a good suction of air from top and bottom into the first fan.

The handle mechanism will no longer be used and is gone! But the Cube core will still be removeable and from the outside it will still look almost original.

For completeness though, and out of curiosity, I will probably also try the final version with different combinations of one or two fans.
 
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You should experiment with lasering some fan spacers to help reduce the dead spots on the rad created by the hub / supports.
 
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Another update.

So, a bit of an update today.

The aluminium rivetnuts arrived and so did a aluminium plate I had cut for the Cube.

So it was now time to get the files and dremel out again and do a bit more fitting up.

These are the rivetnuts for the new hanging system so I can get rid of the handle assembly:

img0248mq.jpg

Tip: if you have a cheap hand operated rivet tool M6 rivet nuts in aluminium are about the limit that I think you can mount properly!

Still, this open style of rivet nut will flush mount and give a really strong thread. First I had to open up the holes in the inner cage a little to take the rivet.

img0247gs.jpg



Then they went in fine

img0251np.jpg

This is the result:

img0246klc.jpg


img0245vb.jpg

Opening up the holes in the perspex and also a little in the top plate for the outer case meant the Cube will then be able to be secured in the case using some cap screws.

img0257sf.jpg


img0259jdw.jpg


I used a worn down dremel disk to plug the hole where the switch used to poke through in the top plate. In hindsight not the greatest idea because if the adhesive used to stick it down dries with the disk sticking up from the surface of the plate it takes a major effort to get it flush again. ever tried grinding down a dremel reinforced cutting disk? I don't recommend it...

img0256rw.jpg


img0254zj.jpg

The aluminium laser cut turned out well.

img0243zl.jpg

and here you can also see how I have cut out the handle section (I'll replace this bit later with a more open mesh).

img0241vt.jpg


img0258c.jpg

So, this is where it is right now. Still working things out and fitting them up but it is coming together.
 
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Just thought I should give a micro update in case you are thinking this build has been forgotten.

Answer is far from it, but I have had to spend more time on an urgent job recently that has diverted me away.

I am also awaiting a few things back from various places for the build to continue.

Firstly, I decided that I wanted the rear plate (bottom or whatever you want to call it) to look a little more integrated so I have designed a piece that divides the back into 3 zones - handle, big side, little side. The piece will frame each zone and also follow the outline of the original back and the idea is that it can be bonded, i.e. JB'd, to the original back plate and therefore using some sanding, patience, filler and a spray can it can be made not to look as if it is a bolt on part.

The framing of the handle portion is to (a) allow the latching system to be retained as original and pass through the hole in the frame OR (b) cleanly removed and replaced with an open mesh.

The framing of the big side in my own build is to allow the small holes of the Cube plate to be replaced by open mesh but can equally be used by others to keep that side in whatever form is desired - i.e. completely kept, completely removed or customised with a plate behind the frame.

On the little side - for me - will be the custom opening for the Zotac ports.

As a thank you for all of the help I have had from everyone on this and other forums I will be publishing the dxf (and a pdf version) of this rear plate design - once I have checked the finished version of my plate to make sure it all fits - so it can be used or modified by others. The published version will include a standard and half height rectangular cut out for ATX mobo shields so that if anyone wants to they can adapt to their own motherboard and Cube layout. [EDIT 4 June: This probably needs to wait until nearer the end of the build as I am constantly tweaking this aspect a mm here and there].

The point of such a plate is to make Cube modding a little bit easier (by being an aid to cover up rough cuts) as well as giving the side benefit of it allowing a bit more wiggle room front to back in the case which can help enormously when trying to re-use the touch switch or fit in a PicoPSU.

In other news - I found a complete Cube with speakers and PSU in the UK which I couldn't resist buying so watch out for yet another mod in the not too distant future. At the moment thoughts on that are to take my power from the original Cube mains adapter and to use the wide input voltage in-Car PSU solution I have been thinking of trying for a while. This next build might go the low power route as it'd be nice to see if I can run one off a solar panel.
 
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So, I got my parts in the post just now to modify the backplate.

You can see the plan in the attachment.

The bottom part is mapped out to match the ports on the Zotac Z77 wifi (with a small change due to me keeping the wifi antennae internal and having room for an IR sensor), the mid port is shaped to allow the handle mechanism to fit through and the top port is shaped to allow maximum flexibility on any other adaptations to the Cube back.

The mesh in the picture is what I am thinking of using for the bottom ventilation of the Cube.

The plate will be bonded to the original Cube back after dremeling away much of the interior and then it will be sprayed.
 

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[video=youtube_share;Gn_FbjipYfA]http://youtu.be/Gn_FbjipYfA[/video]

The radiator and push pull fans are shown here fixed by the drive braket and the centre bracket. Here the system is inverted and filled and running. At first there was a lot of air in the loop and the pump very noisy, air is easy to get out of this loop though and a few top ups later the pump is running very quiet.

Fans here are hooked up to the corsair block and running full speed. Even so, they are not too noisy. The inner fan is soft mounted and the outer is hard mounted to the case parts. I might see if I can change the outer mount to a soft one too as this fan produces noticeably more noise.


The bleeding of the rad was at the weekend. Today I had some time to progress a little further.

I had been wondering how best to secure the mobo in the cube core - as the corner struts unhelpfully make it awkward to fix a tray. Today though I bit the bullet and made a support that joins the aluminium handle support rails to each other (to give it some extra strength and resist against twisting now that the heatsink has gone) and also fixed some threaded inserts into that support to take standoffs that will attach to the top of the mobo. In this way, instead of the usual support from underneath it is suspended from above. This extra support piece and the mobo fixing means I can build everything up without having the top or bottom of the cube in place.

Also wired my push pull fans into a single fan plug and then mounted the fan controller board to be at the bottom rear of the cube to make fan speed adjustments an easy step.

Last thing today was to re-wire the Corsair H80 block so it will draw it's power from the CPU fan header. I know the pump only uses 4W and as I am not using it to actually feed power to the radiator fans this convenient method saves a lot of messy wiring. Just plug the short lead in and it's done.

Wiring is one thing I am trying to be really neat with on this one and my aim is not to have to attach a flying molex trail from the pico PSU. SO my solutions to this are:
1. The two fans will take their power from the fan controller and that will take 12v directly from where the mains adaptor comes in;
2. The Corsair block powered from a fan header.
3. (And I think this should work) for my 500GB SSD the power draw is max of 2W. As the SATA data plug is right next to a USB 2.0 header I am intending to use just the power from a dual USB header into a SATA power connector for a minimal routing of 5v and GND power to my SATA drive. I have never seen anyone do this, but I presume that as I have seen external USB devices use a power only connection from a USB port that there is no reason why I shouldn't be able to do that internally.

By doing these three things I can reduce the connectors going to the pico psu down to just the CPU power plug.

Pictures will come soon....
 
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Latest pic.s

This pic shows the core of the cube without the bottom plate. Here you can see the three plates I made up that hold the core parts together.

p3281781.jpg


First plate at the top of the shot is the metal plate that holds the outside fan and is bolted to the original drive carrier.

The second plate is a 5mm black perspex plate that fixes to one side of the original handle guide / Heatsink retaining pieces

and the third plate fixes to the other side of the same pieces.

Here is a closer shot of the first piece:

img0277pk.jpg


and the second piece:

img0282fk.jpg


And in the shot below you can see that the third piece is also used to suspend the motherboard via standoffs:

img0286fz.jpg


In this one you can see looking from the front plate down into the cube that the central area I have tried to keep as clear of clutter as I can - the water pipes have to go here and this is also the area that the fans will draw their air from.

p3281785.jpg



Here is a side view showing how the SSD will fit. Here you can also see the SATA power to USB power cable I made up to keep the wiring tidy. The 7mm SATA drive sits nicely to the side of the radiator and fan combination and there would be room for another SSD on the other side too (not planning on one for this build though!).

p3281783.jpg
 
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