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Painting the inside of a case without complete breakdown

Last response: in Components
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July 26, 2010 10:48:49 PM

Hello, I am not a case mod person normally, but I just bought a case, after much searching that is perfect in every way, except that the inside isn't painted and it looks, well, unfinished, espcecially since the side window is big enough that you can see all the unapinted drive bays. My intention was to disassemble it and paint the inside in pieces and put it back together. I've done this before. Well, as luck would have it, outside of the pre-painted cover panels and plastic, which I can unscrew and remove, the whole thing is bolted together. So, I'm left with two options (aside from not doing this): 1) ripping it into various pieces and then trying to bolt it together again. I fear this exceeds my technical ability; 2) paint the guts as is as a unit. This is my preference, but I have this feeling that it could turn out really badly. Lots of odd angles to cover and the like. Anyone ever try painting a case interior like this with any success (or failure)? Tips for the unweary?

To the extent it matters, my intention was to paint a matte black. I want the show piece to be the machine, not the case. I'm talking about a few quotes with water sanding and that's it. Nothing fancy.
a b ) Power supply
July 26, 2010 11:37:57 PM

HAF 922? LOL.

Cover the outside with painters tape and paint away.

With a can of spray paint it shouldn't be that hard.

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a b ) Power supply
July 26, 2010 11:46:58 PM

http://www.mnpctech.com/Black_Vinyl_Film.html

Just put some Vinyl film on it instead of painting.

The problem with painting is that if you do not do it right then spray paint will look like *** and scratch to hell out of the black paint inside your case. I'm not a big fan of spray paint for these uses as a computer case unless its done right. The case gets a lot more abuse than you would think, and the interior is terrible for this. It also takes time, it will take a week at minimum just to do a poor job. I can't see a way to do it right without take the case apart and investing a month or two into good thorough coats The vinyl can be applied every place that is visible and is much easier, less time consuming, cheaper, and will look just as good.
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a b ) Power supply
July 26, 2010 11:49:40 PM

Note that there are a lot of finished available, not just black.
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a b ) Power supply
July 26, 2010 11:52:02 PM

^
That looks great, I might just get some now...
Though how scratch proof is the vinyl?
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a b ) Power supply
July 26, 2010 11:53:26 PM

Very I assume. I've used the automotive stuff and its pretty damn solid. MNPCTech stocks a lot of great things, I've yet to see anything of subpar quality from them. They sell what they use from what I can tell.
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a b ) Power supply
July 27, 2010 12:15:24 AM

That's darn nice, so interested in the color shifting one as painting that is so hard. You need 6 coats of paint and if you mess up on one its redo.

Whoops, looks like I sorta hijacked this thread, sorry.
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July 27, 2010 12:20:06 AM

The vinyl is an interesting idea. But, these aren't flat surfaces, so this might be really hard to do nicely. I will look into it. But your concerns about the paint looking bad is mine as well. Because its inside the case, I don't need it to be perfect with high gloss and the like, but I don't want it to chip and peel off either. I don't mind doing the prep work, but I'm worried about getting a (relatively) nice and even coverage when I can't just hang each part and take the care with each. Literally, we're talking about spraying the entire interior of a case as a single unit.

For those who want to visualize, look at the Aerocool Zero Degree case. It has this huge side window, but it shows the unpainted drive bays and other metal and it detracts from the gloss paint of the outside, IMHO.
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a b ) Power supply
July 27, 2010 12:26:46 AM

ddo2 said:
The vinyl is an interesting idea. But, these aren't flat surfaces, so this might be really hard to do nicely. I will look into it. But your concerns about the paint looking bad is mine as well. Because its inside the case, I don't need it to be perfect with high gloss and the like, but I don't want it to chip and peel off either. I don't mind doing the prep work, but I'm worried about getting a (relatively) nice and even coverage when I can't just hang each part and take the care with each. Literally, we're talking about spraying the entire interior of a case as a single unit.

For those who want to visualize, look at the Aerocool Zero Degree case. It has this huge side window, but it shows the unpainted drive bays and other metal and it detracts from the gloss paint of the outside, IMHO.


You would need a minimum of 24 hours before each coat, and I would do a good 10 coats minimum since there are so many ways to scratch the paint. I recommend buying a sheet of the vinyl and seeing how it goes over dynamic surfaces. The stuff I used had no problem with it,and theirs is only $10 for a sheet that should do most of your case if your conservative. I recommend not worrying too much about what underneath the motherboard looks like, just leave a border underneath it that extends to the motherboard stands and ignore the rest as it isn't visible.
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July 30, 2010 12:13:58 PM

done paint work on pc many times, since its a new inside you wont need to do much prep work. you should not have any problems painting all visible corners of the inside of your case with spray paint.
The best way if you dont want to get anything wrong or messy is to take it to your local body shop garage and and ask for one of thier standard colours to be painted on your case, this should be cheaper and time saving than you doing it on your own.

Make sure you remove all plastic, and metal that is not going to be sprayed, pry off anything that is glued with a glue gun, (you will need to use a glue gun to stick it back on) then use masking tape and newspaper to tidily cover all the parts that you do not want painted.

you can ruff up the surface very lightly at firs if you want with very fine sand paper, i believe its over a 180 grid, in aluminium oxide. (however since its new you dont really have to)

When spraying make sure you get familiar with the pray can on a tes surface, so you dont run the paint or spray to light.

You need to lightly spray primer, dark primer for black paints or getting a rich solid colour. and white , silver primer for lighter colors to get out the brightness, shine.

after a light prime, u need to use grit paper lightly to (around 300) get of any of those flakes if any or any uneven dots. (how ever this isnt necessary again since its the inside of your case, cos you wont be running your hand against the paint work)

apply a second coat of primer after an hour. if your in a cold or damp place then after 6 hours.

now you should have a even primed base to hold on your main pint.

If your going for mat to will need three coats of matt paint evenly distributed.

However i do not recommend using matt, i would say to use gloss instead, great colors are lime green and Chevy orange.

If you are using gloss, liquid base or double acrylic, you should use 4 coats at least.
each coat should have 30 minutes to set.

after the colour coat at least 3 coats of lacquer should be sprayed.

again if you want peace of mind you local body shop would do it for 3/4 of the price you would spend doing it yourself. and go for gloss, trust me ;) 
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