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Newb Qs: How to disassemble Water Cooling System and Do Repairs

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October 13, 2011 12:32:52 AM

Good day! :) 

I am new to the forums and I am also relatively new to computers (compared to the experts in this forum). Please expect a lot of noob questions and have mercy. I did use google to search for answers but unfortunately due to my noobness I don't even know what keywords to use exactly so I never really got satisfying answers.

I am planning on installing water cooling on my next build. The main problem is I know nothing of water cooling aside from quite a few videos I have watched over you tube.

I have a few concerns in mind that is holding me back from buying water cooling and I hope the experts here can enlighten me on the matter.


1. I'm worried the liquid/coolant will ruin my hard earned computer components. I have heard that some coolant products don't destroy the components even if they leak. I guess they are non-conductive? Is that true? Has anyone here experienced a leak and was still able to run the computer after drying the components out?

2. I do all my personal repairs on my computer and I don't really like other people to touch my set up. Due to this I am concerned on how I can do troubleshooting if I have water cooling installed. e.g. if I need to replace the video card do I have to drain all the fluid take out the video card and then refill the whole thing?

All I see are videos of water cooling components and how to install... I haven't seen videos on how to take them apart. If you know of tutorial videos regarding dis-assembly please post them here or send them to me.

3. Do I use anything on the metal fittings and tube connections to prevent leakage? e.g. teflon tape to seal the connections? I believe the metal fittings have rubber o-rings and gaskets on them already. Are those sufficient enough?

4. I have watched a video from LinusTechTips channel of you tube that there are some 'plating' of water cooling components or water blocks shouldn't be combined with other certain types of plating? (I thought I heared nickel and copper plated? not sure )

5. What are compression fittings? Are they the best type of connections to use? I have seen water cooling builds where people just fit the cables and then just seal them with cable ties or the metal screw something that pretty much works like cable ties.

6. Any recommended brands of water cooling components and fittings? I am thinking of EK since I really like the professional and heavy duty looks on their components. Is that brand good? Are there better brands?

7. Any other tips you can give a humble noob like me?

Thank you very much for your replies.

If in case I have opened this thread in the wrong section kindly move it for me....
a c 324 K Overclocking
October 13, 2011 12:53:47 AM

I'd highly suggest starting with the Tom's WC sticky linked below in my signature...many of the questions you are asking are discussed there as well as links to other forums for specific topics. Once you get those concepts down, you should have a decent idea of what you need and questions to help you move forward with your build.
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October 13, 2011 2:08:06 AM

1. I'm worried the liquid/coolant will ruin my hard earned computer components. I have heard that some coolant products don't destroy the components even if they leak. I guess they are non-conductive? Is that true? Has anyone here experienced a leak and was still able to run the computer after drying the components out?
Yes leaks can and will destroy our PC, if the leak is on an electrical component. That I know of there are no non-conductive coolants besides mineral oil. Which is not used in a watercooling system to my knowledge.

2. I do all my personal repairs on my computer and I don't really like other people to touch my set up. Due to this I am concerned on how I can do troubleshooting if I have water cooling installed. e.g. if I need to replace the video card do I have to drain all the fluid take out the video card and then refill the whole thing?
When you install a water loop, try to install quick disconnects. In some cases like CPU swaps, you will not need to open the loop, the tubes will be long enough to allow you to simply pull the water block to the side for swap out. and possibly the video also. best practice is to simply drain the loop anyway. It's not like coolant is expensive.

All I see are videos of water cooling components and how to install... I haven't seen videos on how to take them apart. If you know of tutorial videos regarding dis-assembly please post them here or send them to me.
Non tutorials on this because if you put it together they assume you can reverse the order to take it apart lol

3. Do I use anything on the metal fittings and tube connections to prevent leakage? e.g. teflon tape to seal the connections? I believe the metal fittings have rubber o-rings and gaskets on them already. Are those sufficient enough?
Depending on the manufacturer teflon tape may or may not be used. or plumbers dope works also. I prefer the dope vs tape because it's easier to clean up and hide in the threads. The tube endings have 2 kinds, Compression fitting (best) and standard over barb type. Some manufacturers do not require hose clamps on their barb type. See your specific manufacturers recommendations ( I would use anyway)

4. I have watched a video from LinusTechTips channel of you tube that there are some 'plating' of water cooling components or water blocks shouldn't be combined with other certain types of plating? (I thought I heared nickel and copper plated? not sure )
Nickle, Aluminum, Copper, Brass and of course plexi, are the materials used. Yes you should avoid mixing metals. It causes some electrolytic process I forget off the top of my head. Some metals are ok to use together

5. What are compression fittings? Are they the best type of connections to use? I have seen water cooling builds where people just fit the cables and then just seal them with cable ties or the metal screw something that pretty much works like cable ties. personal preference. Compression fittings are the best looking but cost more. Once that use barbs and clamp work just as well but tend to look a little messier.

6. Any recommended brands of water cooling components and fittings? I am thinking of EK since I really like the professional and heavy duty looks on their components. Is that brand good? Are there better brands? Better? debatable. I don't feel they are any better, no. My only issue with EK is they force you to advertise by hacking up their products with their damn logo all over it. Swiftech is my favorite CPU block.

7. Any other tips you can give a humble noob like me?
Watercooling is not some vooodoo magic. It's alot easier than people think. But costly and well worth it. he hardest part is designing your loop then finding place in the case to mount everything.
here's the trick. Test the waterloop for 24 hours BEFORE turning on your computer. Just have the entire loop hooked up wire it to 12 volts and let it run with the 24 pin connector OFF the motherboard. It takes hours sometimes to get all the air bubbles out of the system. you'll fill, run fill run etc etc. Do your best to get every bubble out that you can. Then let it run for 24 hours and watch for leaks. If one is spotted tighten the fitting, housing etc.
Good luck bud, have fun. You won't regret going to water cooling.
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a c 324 K Overclocking
October 13, 2011 2:18:03 AM

You don't need quick disconnects...they can be nice, but typically not needed.

If you are careful with installation and take your time, you shouldn't need to worry about leaks. Leaks happen when you rush and cut corners on your build. Leak test just to make sure before you power up by jumpering your PSU to prime/fill and test running your loop. You do not need to take 24 hrs to leak test...even 5-8 hours is plenty. I rarely leak test longer than 1 hour, but I've been doing this for over 9 years.

Brands- this is where research and budget come into play. Take your time and understand what you are looking for and what you want to spend. Know the TDP watts your loop needs to handle. Know how you want to setup and run the loop. Know what pump you want, what fans to use on what radiators to get the delta-T you want to reach (if that is important to you).

Watercooling isn't rocket science by any means, but you do need to have a strong understanding of all the components and concepts in order to evaluate, plan and build a loop for your specific needs.

Again...read through the sticky...there is a lot of info I put in there.

Mixed metals can be confusing: what you want to avoid is aluminum in your loop. Copper, brass and nickel are all fine. Simply avoid aluminum...it can be found in cheap blocks, cheap radiators and in some junk fittings.

Compression fittings and barbs are covered in the sticky.

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October 13, 2011 10:49:03 AM

Thanks for the replies!

I'll read through the stickies before posting more questions if ever needed.

At least I now know that watercooling is not rocket science or voodoo.... :kaola: 
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a c 324 K Overclocking
October 13, 2011 1:56:20 PM

You will likely have more questions, but you'll have a grasp of what is needed by that point for your loop.
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October 13, 2011 3:57:08 PM

Good answers already popping up in here, one thing I will point out is the 'water cooling bug'. If you don't know what that is now, you will do once you have finished your 1st loop.
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a c 190 K Overclocking
October 13, 2011 5:20:03 PM

I think this is what your after in regards to the title,
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dzxh9-aavQQ
and heres his fill/bleed version for that
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=777JcqPVgLU&feature=fvwr...

if you wanted to add graphics or ram cooling (for example) to your loop,
your first job is draining the loop, then disassemble the required parts to allow the addition to be made,
hook it all up and fill/bleed/test for leaks
but if you have built the loop yourself, you will be aware of the ease/difficulty of pulling lines off barbs, compression fittings don't have that issue as far as I've found, unscrew the collar, and a wiggle gets the tubing off with markedly less struggling :) 
a lot of people just cut them off and buy new tubing if a strip is required
Moto
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October 14, 2011 12:45:12 AM

Hmmm.... @Cygone water cooling bug? Is that some disease where you get addicted to water cooling set ups? :D 
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a c 190 K Overclocking
October 14, 2011 12:51:01 AM

Yup, its addictive is what he meant :-)
Moto
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October 14, 2011 1:20:42 AM

How big is the margin when it comes to cooling performance if I opt for the H70 rather than assembling my own?
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a c 324 K Overclocking
October 14, 2011 1:51:15 AM

Depends, but expect 20-40% lower temps depending on case airflow, fans used, loop components, etc. It also depends on your CPU clocks and ambient temps, as well. For reference, most GPUs run around 60-70C at load with the stock cooler...sometimes even up to 80C if you have poor case airflow. With watercooling on a GPU...expect load temps around 45C or so...depending on ambient temp. CPUs vary depending on model, version and clocks/volts.
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October 17, 2011 3:57:52 PM

Another question... for pre-assembled kits like the corsair h100 or h80 do I still have to run a leak test on those?

Another thing... from watching videos I heard that you have to put your reservoir higher than your pump what happens if it isn't and what happens if the two are on just slightly level ground.

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a c 324 K Overclocking
October 17, 2011 4:08:04 PM

Quote:
Another question... for pre-assembled kits like the corsair h100 or h80 do I still have to run a leak test on those?


You 'shouldn't', but you might consider keeping an eye on it for a while after your first install just to make sure it isn't leaking.

Quote:
Another thing... from watching videos I heard that you have to put your reservoir higher than your pump what happens if it isn't and what happens if the two are on just slightly level ground.


As long as your pump isn't able to suck air from your res, you should be fine. The res being higher than the pump inlet helps keep air out of the loop as you are priming and filling the loop. This isn't a cardinal rule, but a recommendation. Just ensure that your pump inlet isn't going to do anything but take in water- no air. This also includes when you need to tip/rotate your case to get air out of the rads...if you have air in your res and you rotate too much, you run the risk of sucking it into the pump inlet.

Just FYI. Simple concept: just try to avoid air getting into your pump.
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a c 190 K Overclocking
October 17, 2011 5:16:53 PM

The banging noise as it runs will be a clue hehe :) 
Moto
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October 17, 2011 7:01:27 PM

As another additional question to that H100 question.... what if for example I need to re-seat my procie... or change video cards. For every maintenance I do... leak test for a few hours?

Sorry i keep asking... this is one major concern because I am almost always using my computer. :D  a simple 2 hour power outage is torture.

Oh one more thing...

Any suggestions or links for

WHAT TO DO IF YOU SPOT A LEAK?
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a c 190 K Overclocking
October 17, 2011 7:20:58 PM

You can reseat them in the event you change your chip, just clean the base of old paste ans apply new goo,
Leaktesting with those is not so much an issue, its just wise to keep an eye on anything waterlike in your Pc
And if you do ever spot a leak
Scream like an eight year old girl,
Power off using pwr button, unplug from wall
Feel free to continue screaming after this point although the danger is mostly passed :-)
Moto
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a c 324 K Overclocking
October 17, 2011 7:30:35 PM

^Hahahahaha! :) 

If it is a minor leak, you'd see a little drop or small wet spot around the pump or rad. If it's a moderate leak, you'll see it elsewhere...including on your hardware. This is why it's always a good idea to keep an eye on your gear- especially when you didn't build it (meaning- the LCS cooler itself).
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October 18, 2011 10:28:42 AM

:D  funny answer... but I'll probably doing that if ever I do spot a leak.

But here is the scenario so. I spot the leak and pulled the plug. I'm left with (i hope not soaking wet) a video card with a few drops of liquid on the back or a moist video card.

I dry it with a paper towel till it no longer has moisture I can see visually.

Should I put it in a sealed zip lock bag with silica gel packs in it and wait a day or so?

Should I put it under the sun let all the moisture evaporate for half a day?

:D  Basically rescue and recovery... I don't have money to throw away. I'd like to be able to rescue my components from a simple not so huge leak if ever that happens.

So I've heard and read good stuff about swiftek and I guess a lot of graphics cards are coming out already with a swiftek block so I think thats the way to go for me.
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a c 190 K Overclocking
October 18, 2011 3:15:56 PM

Yup, in the event of any mishap,
get everything stripped and dried off for a good day or so,
dont seal in a bag imo, open to air will do
Noone has money to throw away hehe, its just some are sensible enough to seek advice BEFORE damaging expensive kit
You are amongst the smart hehe
Moto
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a c 324 K Overclocking
October 18, 2011 3:21:55 PM

Compressed air can help make sure all the water gets out of any small crevices or even PCI-e slots. Make sure PSU is unplugged from the wall, even though the rig is off, there is still some current running through the board...just be aware. This is my addition to Moto's comments above.
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October 18, 2011 5:53:37 PM

RAWRRRR I DECIDED ON SWIFTEK NOW I CANT FIND A DISTRO!
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a c 324 K Overclocking
October 18, 2011 5:58:20 PM

You don't have to stick only with Swiftech...there are a lot of really good manufacturers out there. I have a lot of retailer's links in the WC sticky.
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October 18, 2011 6:26:00 PM

I had my heart on the apogee xt.

I have an idea though.. I don't have the cash yet for a full new pc. But I was thinking is it a good idea to buy the water cooling components part by part at least? I was browsing through some sites selling components and I see components like stoppers and compression fittings and tubing etc that I can afford bit by bit... maybe I can put the water cooling on my current pc first while I wait for my new one?

Is that a bad idea? Are water cooling components so dynamic like processors and video cards that they get outdated easy?
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a c 190 K Overclocking
October 18, 2011 6:31:36 PM

Nope, Cpu/Gpu block fittings are the only thing that may 'go out of date' and even then, there are variants interchangeable parts, like the XsPc Rasa block, you swap the retainer from AMD to intel and back as you wish, covers both socket types with one block
pumps, resses and fixings are always going to be useful though
buying part by part isn't such a bad idea, not everyones got a few hundred sat around waiting for a purpose lol
Moto
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October 18, 2011 6:35:57 PM

Then its decided (here i go again) Hmm for a CPU-GPU-RES-PUMP loop... id need...... 8 compression fittings at least? I'll get those first since they're the cheapest part.


ADDENDUM: AWWW now another problem... i have a socket 775 q6600 :(  if I get a cpu block now what are the chances that'll go outdated... I'm already about 3 sockets outdated I guess?
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a c 190 K Overclocking
October 18, 2011 6:42:40 PM

If you think each component needs an input and output.....
so spot on there, eihgt shiny bard/compression fittings, may as well grabe some tubing as well because thats cheap enough, make sure you're familiar with sizes before buying though Id/Od/ G14, that kind of thing
Moto
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October 18, 2011 6:50:41 PM

Nope not really that familiar with the sizes... I was reading rubik's thread explaining the size but I don't get it.

The thread says theres the inner size and the outer size of the fitting but when I check the lists I only see G1/4'' --- what does that translate to?
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a c 324 K Overclocking
October 18, 2011 6:59:43 PM

Quote:
i have a socket 775 q6600 if I get a cpu block now what are the chances that'll go outdated... I'm already about 3 sockets outdated I guess?


That's what I am currently running on my WC rig. That chip still runs like a champ for me. I know it's outdated, and I'd love a new i7, but I don't have the cash laying around for that kind of rebuild. (well, I do, but not necessarily the best place to drop those bills).

So, going to attempt to explain the fitting thing...bear with me.


The G1/4" is the threaded standard size for fittings as they are connected to the block, radiator or pump. This ONLY applies to the threaded end...and you really can't go wrong here, these days. Almost every watercooling manufacturer has gone to G1/4" threaded fittings as a standard. I believe there used to be G1/4" as well as tapered NPT. Both actually were very similar in thread size, however, NPT was tapered and will actually cross-thread as you insert the threads further, if using a G1/4" fitting in a NPT component. (these are pretty outdated, but you can still find a few rads here and there that might have these).

Anyways- you really only need to concern yourself with the ID of the tubing and the ID size for the barb/fitting. The barb ID size always represents the ID tubing size...so 1/2"ID barbs are for 1/2"ID tubing. Tubing also typically has an OD size as well, but this is to give a clearance size for thicker tubing (so you know how big to drill those holes for external rads) as well as tubing wall thickness. Thicker wall tubing usually allows tighter bends and doesn't kink as easily as thin walled tubing. (If you get good tubing and compare to the cheap-o hardware store vinyl tubing, you'll see what I am talking about, here).

Does that help?

(Maybe I need to re-word the sticky with better info and maybe better images....)
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a c 190 K Overclocking
October 18, 2011 7:02:57 PM

G 1/4 is the size of the threaded part, it screws into your components, obviously vital to ensure that its the rght size, but its a common enough, almost standard sizing
Id internal diameter, so 11mm Id is 11mm from inside wall to the other inside wall
Od Outside diameter 16mm between the outside walls
so if your compression fitting mentions G1/4 11/16mm tubing, you would know that they are referring to the tube measurements and reassuring you that the screwpart fits a G1/4 threaded block/res
clearer?
**Edit, i have a socket 775 q6600 if I get a cpu block now what are the chances that'll go outdated, as long as your cpu block fits 775 socket you'll be fine
http://www.overclockerstech.com/xspc-rasa-cpu-water-blo... second picture shows the various retainers supplied with a Rasa kit, dependant on your motherboard you swap the retainer to the one that fits your board, I can take your 775 block and throw it onto my Amd rig in about an hour :)  then you can have it back the next day I promise
Moto
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a c 324 K Overclocking
October 18, 2011 7:21:36 PM

Yeah, most block manufacturers will release new brackets/hold downs when a new socket comes out. They like people to use upgrade-ability as a reason to buy their product. You just consider a CPU block almost the same as a universal GPU block...same concept...same block can be used on any chip that fits and has the ability to stay mounted.
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October 18, 2011 7:47:53 PM

Gee thanks guys...

:D  I'd also like an i7 but that would really be a waste since I just feel the next procies from intel are coming out soon.

"BP-BSCPF-CC3 Black Sparkle Compression CC3 for ID 3/8" OD 5/8" = 500 php"

Lets apply what you guys were saying... so I saw this in one of the sites I was checking out.. its a bits power compression fitting..

It did indicate G1/4 so that's good, that part I understand ID --- 3/8'' and then Outside Diameter is 5/8''

So if I get this.. I have to buy tubing that is also 3/8'' ID... did i get that correctly?

q1: The outside diameter of 5/8'' is it referring to the barb inside the compression fitting or the whole thing screwed in?

q2: Im guesing the ID of the barb is 3/8'' but its actually bigger for a tighter fit?

q3: what is cc3? Because I'm seeing CC5 on some other parts.
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a c 324 K Overclocking
October 18, 2011 7:57:30 PM

Quote:
q1: The outside diameter of 5/8'' is it referring to the barb inside the compression fitting or the whole thing screwed in?


Outside diameter is the outside wall to wall of the tubing, it wouldn't apply to the fitting unless a compression fitting has a maximum OD it can handle for the top piece of the fitting.

Quote:
q2: Im guesing the ID of the barb is 3/8'' but its actually bigger for a tighter fit?


It's a pretty snug fit for most fittings. I have used 3/8"ID and 1/2"ID tubing/barbs and both fit well. If you want something really, really tight, use 1/2" fittings and 7/16"ID tubing. You'll have to really push those suckers on...just be careful not to cause small fractures with the stress. Many people use silicone spray or heat the tubing in hot water when going this route.

Quote:
q3: what is cc3? Because I'm seeing CC5 on some other parts.


Not sure I know what that means, either. Can you link to it? That might give some info we can look at.
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October 18, 2011 8:06:47 PM

@rubik

http://www.tipidpc.com/viewitem.php?iid=12382866

here's a link to the site I'm looking at. it has like CC3 and CC5 not really sure what those mean.

Btw... for compression fittings.. I know you guys pretty much answered this earlier but I see compression fittings like bits power that really costs a lot compared to others. Whats that major difference? How can the quality differ?


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a c 324 K Overclocking
October 18, 2011 8:24:24 PM

I'm guessing the CC3/CC5 might be some kind of part denotation somehow...or even a product/model version? I've never really seen (or paid attention) to that...interesting. I'm curious to know what it actually means, now.

Bitspower fittings are definitely some of the more expensive ones out there, and they great quality. However, don't let price automatically equal better quality or better...there are others out there that are just as good but cost less. I would do some research on really cheap ones, though...I could see some cheap ones going with low-quality metals that might corrode (aluminum, etc) or poorly fitting threads, etc. Most of what you will find on online retailers for watercooling are good...I'd be cautious of Ebay purchases of no-name fittings/barbs.
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October 18, 2011 10:40:13 PM

I'd like to get the bits power parts but ouch.. 500 php for each piece of fitting would hurt like hell. I really like the chrome brass finish though.

I'd go with EK fittings if budget really is tough.


Found a second hand seller for the apogee... hmm good idea? or bad idea? If I'm getting 2nd hand stuff what do I need to check immediately?

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a c 190 K Overclocking
October 18, 2011 11:38:40 PM

I'd shy away from second hand gear unless I could see it before handing money over,
Any splits,cracks or knackered seals and that leak we were talking about a few posts up will be a reality,
Ideally you would want to see it working and not leaking so I wouldn't buy it from say ebay
Moto
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a b K Overclocking
October 19, 2011 1:53:15 AM

shogrran said:
I'd like to get the bits power parts but ouch.. 500 php for each piece of fitting would hurt like hell. I really like the chrome brass finish though.

I'd go with EK fittings if budget really is tough.

Found a second hand seller for the apogee... hmm good idea? or bad idea? If I'm getting 2nd hand stuff what do I need to check immediately?


I went with Enzotech Black compression fittings, and they're quite nice. The finish is actually pretty lame though - I can sometimes strip it with my fingers if I'm tightening it really hard. That's probably because they're matte finish, and you can't do anything permanent like anodizing to keep the finish on :(  EK's stuff should be fine.


I've bought some second-hand parts (how I saved a bunch on my loop), and there are several important things to do before buying anything used:

A) get lots of good pictures, especially of the bottom surface of the block. It should be very shiny (like a mirror) and level with a slight dip in the center. I thought I had some of my blocks, but I don't think so :( 

B) find out from the seller what he ran in the loop (coolant and other blocks/materials - some metals react with others). I personally wouldn't buy anything that has been run with a premixed coolant or dye, and anything with aluminum + copper/nickel. Copper + Nickel are fine in a loop.

C) Pay using a method that can get you your money back if the item is not as described (Paypal, Amazon Payments, etc.). This is really just as a last resort to make sure you don't lose tons of money. Also, check for things like Heatware feedbacks - it allows for a certain degree of trust (here's mine for example: http://www.heatware.com/eval.php?id=75353)
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a c 324 K Overclocking
October 19, 2011 1:54:51 AM

Used blocks are generally OK. Even if the o-ring is bad, you can get a replacement/rebuild kit for like $10 or less.
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a b K Overclocking
October 19, 2011 3:18:02 AM

rubix_1011 said:
Used blocks are generally OK. Even if the o-ring is bad, you can get a replacement/rebuild kit for like $10 or less.


Yeah, generally sellers are pretty honest about their stuff, but having that payment refund safety net has a purpose too. I always get pictures of high $$ stuff, mainly for physical evidence if ever needed, and it keeps people honest.

I like to know what they run so I know A) if I need to do some extra cleaning or be careful of mixing metals, and B) if I think there will be clogging due to dyes/additives. Some people out there think they need to add all this stuff to the coolant to make it look good...
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October 19, 2011 11:31:34 AM

@boiler1990 generally sellers a re pretty honest about their stuff.... :(  that doesn't really apply from where I come from. Not always at least. (Sorry fellow countrymen, just stating personal experience here)

@rubix sorry for misspelling your name for the past few replys. And well that replacement rebuild kit is going to be a problem... its actually hard enough to get brand new components here. So i guess I have to get brand new stuff because i think I can't get rebuild kits.

@boiler You mentioned mixing metals.... what is that? Clogging due to dyes and additives... I have a question on that as well...I read on one of the threads from rubix that distilled water+biocide+kill coil is the way to go to avoid goo and clogs. But is there any chemicals that I should avoid? Like using 1 brand of coolant and then draining it and then following it up with another brand or type of coolant? (residue might have some bad effects when mixed with a different coolant?) Although I really do plan on just distilled water


FURTHER QUESTIONS: Do I have to get distilled water from autoshops? The one they used for wet car batteries? Or can I used just regular distilled water from groceries?

For tubing color... I was thinking I don't really like the transparent/translucent tubing. Primarily because at somepoint theyll look like old tubes. I'm thinking black tubing (just like what I saw in one of maxishine's builds) but then I'm also thinking that transparent is good so that you can see if you need to replace liquid?
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a b K Overclocking
October 19, 2011 1:36:51 PM

Quote:
@boiler1990 generally sellers a re pretty honest about their stuff.... :(  that doesn't really apply from where I come from. Not always at least. (Sorry fellow countrymen, just stating personal experience here)

Well on average, most online folks are. That's why it's always good to buy from bigger forums, where feedback systems like Heatware are encouraged/needed.


Quote:
@boiler You mentioned mixing metals.... what is that?

Copper and Nickel have similar electronegativities, so they tend to not react with each other (still happens, but VERY slowly). Maybe 10 years down the road I'll be concerned about my HF Supreme Full Copper and Nickel GPU blocks :) 

Copper and Aluminum or Nickel and Aluminum cause some serious problems. There's a thread around here about mixing metals with some pictures...many brave pieces of watercooling hardware lost their lives in the making of that thread.

Long story short: don't mix aluminum into loops. Don't buy parts that have been in those loops either. It will end badly.

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Clogging due to dyes and additives... I have a question on that as well...I read on one of the threads from rubix that distilled water+biocide+kill coil is the way to go to avoid goo and clogs. But is there any chemicals that I should avoid? Like using 1 brand of coolant and then draining it and then following it up with another brand or type of coolant? (residue might have some bad effects when mixed with a different coolant?) Although I really do plan on just distilled water

Let me just throw this out there first: always rinse your components before putting them in a loop, especially used ones. That said, a lot of people run something other than distilled water in their loops (there are premixed coolants and premixed dyes), and the additives in those have a tendency to clog up the microchannels in the CPU and GPU waterblocks. Clogged channels = ruined equipment = bad cooling...

If you buy something run with another coolant, you'll just need to rinse it more thoroughly. My used rad was run with a premix, so I spent about 20 minutes rinsing it with hot water, and a decent (but normal) amount of stuff came out. I basically rinsed until the water was clean. Distilled + killcoil or PT Nuke is really the best option, and colored tubing can be used to make up for the lack of color in the coolant.


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FURTHER QUESTIONS: Do I have to get distilled water from autoshops? The one they used for wet car batteries? Or can I used just regular distilled water from groceries?

For tubing color... I was thinking I don't really like the transparent/translucent tubing. Primarily because at somepoint theyll look like old tubes. I'm thinking black tubing (just like what I saw in one of maxishine's builds) but then I'm also thinking that transparent is good so that you can see if you need to replace liquid?


You can use distilled water from the grocery store. Like $0.98/gallon here :D  (Technically, isn't it all the same?)

Tubing color is really up to you; reservoirs and some blocks (with plexi tops) are clear, so if you need to see the coolant you can just check on it there. You don't normally need to change your coolant (aside from regular maintenance), so it shouldn't be much of an issue.
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a c 324 K Overclocking
October 19, 2011 1:46:27 PM

Distilled and killcoil and/or biocide are the way to go. Distilled is the cleanest, is very mineral-free and therefore, should be non-conductive (in theory). However, as soon as any solvent makes contact with any surface area (water is a solvent, too), it will begin to pick up particles and ions from local sources and become conductive...which is why making sure you are leak tested is a good idea for the long haul. Killcoil is .999+% silver, which (according to the solvent concept above) gives off ions that basically kill bacteria or other crawlies that want to grow in a warm, petri-dish environment like your water loop creates. Biocide essentially does the same thing, but many use both together.

Distilled and killcoil or biocide don't stop clogs...they keep crap from growing. Additives and 'coolants' are what cause clogs...not using them is how to prevent clogging. Dyes are better...even food coloring to a degree is better. Colored tubing just takes care of that pesky need for color...problem solved.
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October 19, 2011 1:53:51 PM

I'll just use black non-transparent tubing. Then I'll just add one of those flow indicators to make sure the thing is still running. :D  I'm not good at taking apart blocks for cleaning. I may be able to take them apart but not put them back together.

@rubix
So you're on 775 as well. Did you overclock your system? I want to overclock mine although not to the maximum. I heard that the Q6600 goes all the way to 3.4Ghz.

Given unlimited budget.... which really is better for cooling down your system? Liquid cooling or air cooling? Unlimited budget but no fictional or custom made components please. :D  Just the parts we have available.

Waaah I'm getting excited just thinking :D  black tubing.. black chrome fittings... whoohoooo
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a c 324 K Overclocking
October 19, 2011 2:05:44 PM

I have my Q6600 @3.4 right now. (Well, not right now...it's turned off and at home :)  ) There are a couple threads/stickies somewhere that walk you through OC'ing the older Core2 quads...it's pretty simple. 2.4ghz is stock on that chip, so a 1ghz OC is pretty damn good. I've had it close to 4.0 before, but it wasn't stable...3.4 seems to be a good sweet spot, but it really depends on motherboard, RAM/speed/timings, and your PSU. You can simply jump from 2.4 -> 3.0 by switching your FSB from 266 to 333 without any voltage bumps. After that, you need to increase your vcore and RAM voltages and speeds accordingly (unless you have a board that allows unlinked RAM/FSB, like mine).

Anyways...back to watercooling. Watercooling > Air given unlimited budget. Every. Damn. Time. However, most will argue that watercooling is also air cooling, which is correct to a decent degree. However, it is far more effective in initial thermal transfer from the components and then moved and dissipated remotely from the rest of the system (via radiators) whereas air cooling simply blows the hot air off the heatsink into the case and around the other components. It really depends on what you are cooling and the delta you are trying to achieve, but realistically, a delta of 20 or lower is pretty dang good for almost every normal user. Between 10 -> 5 and you are just showing off how thick your wallet is.
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a b K Overclocking
October 19, 2011 2:44:03 PM

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I'm not good at taking apart blocks for cleaning. I may be able to take them apart but not put them back together.

Some blocks you're not supposed to take apart, usually GPU blocks (voids the warranty). Just making that known.

Cleaning just involves flushing through the channel, kind of like if it were in the loop.

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Given unlimited budget.... which really is better for cooling down your system? Liquid cooling or air cooling? Unlimited budget but no fictional or custom made components please. :D  Just the parts we have available.


With an unlimited budget, you'd be looking at phase change cooling, or LN2 for short benchmarking runs. But yes, LC > Air every time.


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It really depends on what you are cooling and the delta you are trying to achieve, but realistically, a delta of 20 or lower is pretty dang good for almost every normal user. Between 10 -> 5 and you are just showing off how thick your wallet is.


My sub-10C delta loop only costed me half a month's paycheck as an intern... :D 
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October 19, 2011 3:00:13 PM

I just realized if I go for bitspower fittings i'll more than double the cost for the fittings... :(  I'll just go with xspc then.

If I don't overclock and leave everything on stock frequencies and voltages... can I not put fans in the radiator?

I really appreciate all the answers. This will really help me out on my first watercooling build.

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a c 324 K Overclocking
October 19, 2011 3:05:13 PM

Passive really doesn't work anymore like it used to...components still produce too much in heat watts to make it viable unless you have a lot of rad surface area. Why not just go with low FPI rads (7-9 is pretty low) and some low speed fans? Or, get the components you want and run your fans on a fan controller?
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a b K Overclocking
October 19, 2011 3:16:32 PM

rubix_1011 said:
Passive really doesn't work anymore like it used to...components still produce too much in heat watts to make it viable unless you have a lot of rad surface area. Why not just go with low FPI rads (7-9 is pretty low) and some low speed fans? Or, get the components you want and run your fans on a fan controller?


Yeah, for quiet, low FPI, low speed fans are the way to go.

The Xigmatek XLF and CLF fans are really quiet (<20 dBA, which is quieter than a whisper) but can push a great amount of air (61 CFM). They come in numerous colors, and they're relatively inexpensive as far as good quiet fans go.
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