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Lego case cooling

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  • Water Cooling
  • Cases
  • Cooling
  • Overclocking
Last response: in Overclocking
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August 5, 2012 10:03:07 AM

I have built a PC case out of lego. The dimensions are: L70cm W70cm H50cm. I haven't decided what kind of hardware to put in it, but am gearing towards a high end gaming rig that would last me a few good years, looking to spend about 1500 to 2000 on components. From the research I have done I gather that heat would be a huge issue. The bricks themselves have about a 100 degree C melting point but are not the best at dissipating heat. My question is what kind of water cooled systems are recommended. What I am looking for is something powerful that will keep my system stable. I also plan to include 4 fans at the bottom and one at the top to create a chimney effect and move ambient air through the case.

Additional details: most of the case is made out of 1x2x1 bricks and 16x16 plates so the lego is relatively thin. Also the radiator and reservoir can be external as can the PSU.

Sorry about the lack of details but if someone can at least get me started in the right direction I would be very grateful

More about : lego case cooling

a b K Overclocking
August 5, 2012 10:38:19 AM

Stop taunting us and post a picture already!

Anway, one thing you need to be aware of when it comes to watercooling is that it's very good at storing heat but it's not very good at removing it.

Water has a very low thermal conductivity, it's a very good thermal insulator. It's better than antifreeze (although Antifreeze has other advantages) but it's several orders of magnitude less conductive than pure copper. The turbulence caused by a waterpump and water's natural ability to store absurd amounts of heat make it ideal for absorbing and transporting heat away from specific areas. Nearby areas may actually get hotter, this is why many chipsets have optional heatsinks for water cooled systems.

What this means is that for systems where your objective is to prevent heat build-up you should stick with air cooling and get a good heatsink and fan assembly rather than water cooling. Water cooling would of course work fine if that's your objective but it's not strictly necessary to make this work.
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August 5, 2012 10:51:45 AM

My objective to to make my system work without bursting into flames. I would prefer watercool system for its cooling efficiency and the awesome factor.

From what I understand from your post is that a watercool system would be better at getting rid of heat until the point that the liquids temperature goes up, meaning its efficiency goes down the longer my pc is on?

Also 80% of the lego bricks have arrived so its not done yet but I have the design done in lego digital designer. My first design was a 75cm cubed companion cube but the price of the lego i used was too steep. If anyone is interested I can Email both files that can be opened with lego digital designer for anyone who wants to build off my design.
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a b K Overclocking
August 5, 2012 11:27:04 AM

mimi93 said:
My objective to to make my system work without bursting into flames. I would prefer watercool system for its cooling efficiency and the awesome factor.

From what I understand from your post is that a watercool system would be better at getting rid of heat until the point that the liquids temperature goes up, meaning its efficiency goes down the longer my pc is on?

Also 80% of the lego bricks have arrived so its not done yet but I have the design done in lego digital designer. My first design was a 75cm cubed companion cube but the price of the lego i used was too steep. If anyone is interested I can Email both files that can be opened with lego digital designer for anyone who wants to build off my design.


You better post a picture once all is said and done. The temperatures at the die will rarely ever exceed 100C which means that the rest of the system will never get that high. This is due to basic principles of thermodynamics so you really have nothing to worry about. As long as the bricks can take 80C-90C there should be no problem. However, if airflow is inadequate you could run into issue regardless of whether or not you use water or air cooling.

There's plenty of information on watercooling elsewhere on this forum including a number of informative stickies. Watercooling is very good and efficient but it is not universally better than air cooling, both have their place.
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a c 78 K Overclocking
August 5, 2012 1:29:51 PM

you want help with watercooling? have you read the watercooling sticky to begin with :)  ?
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August 6, 2012 2:11:01 AM

good thing about having a lego case is you can make it bigger i guess? did you think about double layering it or maybe using a heat resistant glue or sealant in the appropriate areas? also you should have a look at the sticky and read over it a few times so you know what to ask and why to ask it :) 

(edit)
also, assuming you havent glued the case already, have you considered using a metal or wooden backplate? thats where most of your heat would be, there and the roof.
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a c 150 K Overclocking
August 6, 2012 2:34:03 AM

Pics please!!!

You don't want your Lego's to melt in there ;) 
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August 6, 2012 6:06:42 AM

I have built the case to support the weight without the need of any glue, almost everything will be lying flat on the bottom with at least an inch of space between components and the Lego base. I want to avoid the use of a metal/wooden heatshield since I incorporate clear bricks into my design and want to use EL wire to make is look even more awesome.

I dont have the all important wall bricks yet so the case is a pile of bricks right now, but I took screenshots of both designs. on tuesday when I get everything else I will post pictures of the build and final product in the appropriate thread.

Original Companion cube design:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/84319478@N05/7723306766/in...

Design that I ended up going with:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/84319478@N05/7723298430/in...
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a c 150 K Overclocking
August 6, 2012 6:11:01 AM

Make a build log on how to do this :) 
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August 6, 2012 6:14:10 AM

Also questions about the actual water cooling: My goal is to build something that will last and is easily upgradeable

-What material should my water blocks be made of.
-Types of coolant I should use, many people say to stay away from premixes and other say to use only premixes
-Are there one size fits all waterblocks? or will I have to buy new ones if I decide to upgrade in a few years time
-advantages and disadvantages of internal and external radiators

As you can see my original design does not incorporate much in the way of ventilation holes. I would prefer that I dont have to knock a bunch of holes in the case walls because aesthetics and keeping to a theme were primary goals in this build. It would be a challenge I know but thats why im building it.
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a c 78 K Overclocking
August 6, 2012 6:22:37 AM

please read the sticky located in my sig, has all the answers to your mystical questions.
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a c 150 K Overclocking
August 6, 2012 6:24:52 AM

System Specs?
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August 6, 2012 7:46:24 AM

advantages of having an external rad is you get clean fresh air so most times you would get better performance but considering you want a how yould i put it, lego/ish look you might want to avoid that, also keep in mind the rad would be more exposed to bumps or children with sharp objects.

You could always consider making a radbox and have most of your watercooling gear in a box seperate to your case, I dunno maybe just build another lego box and have two seperate zones? With quick disconnect ports on the back so it would be easier to move in the unlikely event that you do move it.

maybe consider painting lego squares on a metal backplate? im just worried about any contact with heated parts, it would be a shame if you melted your case away because you could expose your precious hardware to either fire or water hazards.

But upload these pictures and let us all have a look at what your working with so we can assist you. :) 
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a c 78 K Overclocking
August 6, 2012 7:47:41 AM

+50000
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August 6, 2012 9:12:39 AM

Ive read the watercooling sticky. Answers almost all my questions. Il post the pictures of the build of the case in a few days.

In case anyone missed them the pics of my designs:

Original Companion cube design:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/84319478@N05/7723306766/in...

Design that I ended up going with:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/84319478@N05/7723298430/in...

If anyone wants to build off my designs PM me your email address and Il email you the file that can be opened by lego digital designer.
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August 6, 2012 9:13:14 AM

Best answer selected by mimi93.
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a c 78 K Overclocking
August 6, 2012 11:17:44 AM

hehehe, thanks for the BA vote, now onto those pics!! :) 
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a c 331 K Overclocking
August 6, 2012 2:29:00 PM

This topic has been closed by Rubix_1011
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