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Case Mod Blog

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a b ) Power supply
February 8, 2011 4:30:37 AM

I've recently completed a case mod for my sister. Over the summer I asked her if she would enjoy a gaming PC. After discussing with my wife, we decided we were going to do something special for Kelley this year.
I started the project in September, but many of the parts were bought over the next several months. The painting and sanding etc were my first real attempts at what I think of as a full conversion mod. I finished the project just days before Christmas, and surprised her with the gift on Christmas Day. I think despite the hardships, the setbacks, and the delays it came out almost exactly as I wanted. For modding pros, this will not be impressive. But seeing the tears of joy and excitement brought me all the praise I'll ever need. Everyone in my family agreed it is the coolest thing ever.

I've built plenty of computers, and even modded some of my own, but this was my most ambitious project yet. I'd never completely painted a case before. Also never installed a window before. Its my first time wetsanding, first time for a lot of things. Anything that could have gone wrong pretty much did, and I had to start from scratch all over again because of some of the boneheaded things I did. Also had some setbacks when I had to use some parts allocated to the project to fix my other sister's PC when it took a crap. I barely got done in time for Christmas, but it was all worth it.

More about : case mod blog

a b ) Power supply
February 8, 2011 4:39:16 AM

I will be adding more as I go, unfortunately I am having trouble with a photo hosting website. It will be resolved tomorrow I am certain...kinda

The Pink O2 case from Raidmax is what I used for this project. I built a PC for my stepdaughter 3 years ago and gave it to her for Christmas. She was very excited as it was unusual tio have a pink case. She kept saying "Its pink!" over and over again. She was wquite excited, but teenagers change what they want almost daily. She came to me this summer requesting a laptop, which I can understand lots of kids her age really don't want a bulky pc in their room or tied to an outlet. That's when I decided to use c=some parts from her PC for Kelley's. Little actually went into the machine from Ashley, but the $50 case is what I had to work with.


a b ) Power supply
February 8, 2011 4:46:27 AM

I wish I had taken some photos before I started, but I wasn't sure exactly what I was gonna do with the thing. It started to take shape as I prepped the case by sanding, lots and lots of sanding. I followed advice from the guys at MNPCTECH, they really (indirectly) helped a great deal with this job. They have great tutorials and such, I also perused a number of other modding sites.

Top panel, after sanding and primer:




Side panel after sanding:



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a b ) Power supply
February 8, 2011 4:58:55 AM

Well, I'll post some more tomorrow. I'm sure someone will let me know if I've posted in the inappropriate place. Cheers!


Top panel is ready to be painted!

a b ) Power supply
February 8, 2011 5:16:26 AM

This is the front panel after one pass with the paint, I chose a dark mettalic blue from Rustoleum. This entire project was done with rattle cans, and no outside assistance. Each panel received 3 coats of primer, 6 coats of the rustoleum blue, and 3 coats of clear coat. After my experince, I am now using more like 5 coats of the clear coat, because wetsanding takes it down quite a bit and also the buffing.

The color is quite a bit darker than the pix show, this only one coat.

a b ) Power supply
February 8, 2011 5:33:25 AM

Here's a side panel that has one or two coats:



You can see (one of) my first klutzy mistakes with the paint run in the lower left corner. I tried to fix this but made a bigger mess.
Got a little heavy handed with the paint at first.

Had to start over. oh well...
a b ) Power supply
February 8, 2011 5:44:10 AM

The idea I had was to have the exterior a dark, deep color, almost impenetrable to the eyes. In contrast I wanted the interior to be bright and colorful. So I painted the interior an electric blue for UV lighting and the dark blue exterior.

I removed all the rivets and painted the interior. I didn't realize the paint would blow so much outside, it ended up having a rough texture that I found strangely appealing. I wouldn't do it that way again, but I would like to use some textured paint in the future.

a b ) Power supply
February 8, 2011 9:51:03 PM

Quote:
Wow buzznut. I'll trade 'ya my '69 El Camino bumper jack for it!

http://www.ss396.com/mm5/merchant.mvc?Screen=PROD&Produ...

I almost had it sold on this forum yesterday after the guy saw the pic. But the guy insisted I throw in a print out of this article and I wouldn't do. He was in to some weird stuff. A namecaller too. Besides your rig is a lot better than the slow junk He wanted to trade for.

http://www.scientificamerican.com/blog/post.cfm?id=why-...


best to stay away from that one..
a b ) Power supply
February 8, 2011 9:54:35 PM

8/27/10
Goodies arrive! mod supplies and sleeving



a b ) Power supply
February 8, 2011 10:15:29 PM

Starting to realize what an awesome task I've undertaken. Still quite far from my vision, I resign myself to take my time and do the best I can with what I've got. I spend many odd hours in the garage, weekends and nights. Don't have money after the parts are ordered, so supplies are limited to what I have around the garage. I don't have much in the way of quality tools, The two main power tools I have for this job is a dremel and an old orbital sander I bought for $5 at a garage sale. Most of the sanding and everything else is all by hand.

Top panel is shaping up.



Here's some of my supplies:


Ended up breaking the Logisys CCFL fan you see at the biottom. Oh well... :ange: 


Internal parts start coming in:






Various sanding blocks and grit sizes from 400Grit to 2500.


a b ) Power supply
February 8, 2011 10:37:04 PM

Paint is done on top panel:



I begin work on another project at the same time 8/29/10:



Still under wraps for the time being..

February 8, 2011 10:51:46 PM

No power sander? Gotta have a B&D power sander.
a b ) Power supply
February 8, 2011 11:08:34 PM

Quote:
No power sander? Gotta have a B&D power sander.


Just the orbital sander for removing the original (crap) paint. The rest was done by hand.
a b ) Power supply
February 8, 2011 11:18:02 PM

Speaking of sanding..Here I start with the wetsanding. I start with 800 grit then move up to 1200, 1500. and 2000.









Then I start the buffing with perfect it compound. 12 applications total.







Next comes cutting the window

Anonymous
a b ) Power supply
February 9, 2011 9:48:22 AM

This topic has been moved from the section Opinions and Experiences to section CPU & Components by Grumpy9117
a b ) Power supply
February 10, 2011 1:18:06 AM

Shadow703793 said:
@OP: Take a look at bit tech's modding section. There are a lot of PC case modders there (and imo, some of the best). It would be a good idea to post this over there if you haven't already done so.

http://forums.bit-tech.net/forumdisplay.php?f=42
http://forums.bit-tech.net/forumdisplay.php?f=2



Ok I'll check it out.


I ordered a window kit with molding, another thing I likely won't be doing again any time soon. It was probably the biggest PITA in the whole project. Better to pay a bit more for bolt on or make your own mounting. I also cut the window with a dremel. Much like watching old people have sex, it was slow and painful.
My wife got me a skill saw for Christmas which is what I highly recommend. Much easier, and quicker.




As you can see, the dremel tends to burn the tape. That's nothing compared to what it did on the paint job.. :pfff: 






Well, its done anyway..




The rest is coming along nicely:







a b ) Power supply
February 10, 2011 1:36:03 AM

I stripped the left panel with the window down to bare metal again. I redid the paint job and jammed the window in. All this was done in December, with the finishing touches being completed on December 23rd. Next up, the big reveal at Christmas!




That was a bugger! I probably had to make a dozen attempts and using the dremel in between to shave a bit more down so it would fit. Then the damn thing kept wanting to pop out on me!! I thought of giving up a couple of times, but I am not a quitter. My wife calls me a dog with a bone, and I admit I become laser focused on what I'm doing until its finished. I didn't see Andrea much during December and she was getting quite upset at me. It all turned out well though.

Not bad for spray paint:



A look at the internals 12/19.10:












A little touch up and we're ready for Christmas!
February 10, 2011 1:42:02 AM

Looks pretty nice for having to use cans. Thats a boat load of work.
When I was in Okinawa we painted my friends car with cans, lots of sanding took us about a month of total work 4 or 5 guys.
a b ) Power supply
February 10, 2011 1:57:12 AM

Very nice job on the case.
a b ) Power supply
February 10, 2011 2:10:53 AM

So its Christmas and I'm ready. Kelley doesn't suspect a thing, and most everyone else knows what I'm doing but not the extent to which I customized the PC.

The specs are as follows:

Magnum Mysterium

OCZ 550 W Fatality PSU
AMD Phenom I Quad core 9850 2.5 Ghz CPU overclocked to 2.8 Ghz
Thermalright Ultra 120 HSF with a 120mm Yate loon fan
Asrock N68-S Motherboard
4 gigs OCZ reaper 1066Mhz ram
Gigabyte GT 240 1 GB video card
1 DVD reader and 1 DVD burner
40 in 1 card reader
Samsung 500GB F3 hard drive
2 12" CCFL UV Lights
A Programmable fan in the window reading Merry Christmas and Kelley's name
The other case fans are Yate loon UV 120mm fans

I threw a few games in for her to get started, Oblivion, Fable, Fear, and a few others.


Unsuspecting victim (damn red eye)




Can't figure out why I'm giving her a keyboard, but likes the wireless. She's very nice and thankful.





Starting to understand what she's getting, she starts to open the case.





My belly invades the scene as she inspects the computer, everyone is almost as happy as she is!





I plug it in in the kitchen so she can see the UV lighting and the fan lighting up her name.





I am the best big brother EVER!


I need to extend thanks to everyone who helped me with this project, mostly my wonderful and patient wife (who is probably wondering what I'm doing right now). This was truly a labor of love that at times was extremely frustrating, very educational, and also one of the most rewarding things I've done in a while.

The other project is almost finished as well, I'll be posting a blog on that project soon. I reckon I'll be done in the next few weeks. I've also purchased items for my next big mod, this one will be for myself and is going to be amazing. :hello: 
a b ) Power supply
February 10, 2011 2:19:49 AM

galeener said:
Looks pretty nice for having to use cans. Thats a boat load of work.
When I was in Okinawa we painted my friends car with cans, lots of sanding took us about a month of total work 4 or 5 guys.


Yeah, I imagine a whole car is an undertaking. This project would have taken less time with some help, but you know it takes longer the first time you do something. Now I can knock out the sanding and primer in a day, the paint in another day. Still gotta wait two weeks for curing though...
a b ) Power supply
February 10, 2011 2:21:29 AM

cia24 said:
Very nice job on the case.


Thanks, not quite ready for the cover of CPU magazine yet but my future projects will be. ;) 
a b ) Power supply
February 10, 2011 2:45:44 AM

Nice work.
I have worked alot with spray cans
and can appreciate what you did.
When you do something you love FOR somebody you love
great things can happen :) 
February 10, 2011 3:12:21 PM

Hey Son,

You ARE the BEST big brother, EVER!

Your gift to Kelley was amazing, and we were so lucky to be there and observe the unveiling! You've always had the heart of an artist, and this is stunning evidence of your talent, and tenacity! Do you know how very proud of you we are? More than we can say, and more than you'd probably want written in this blog.

We love you,
Dad and Pam


buzznut said:
So its Christmas and I'm ready. Kelley doesn't suspect a thing, and most everyone else knows what I'm doing but not the extent to which I customized the PC.

The specs are as follows:

Magnum Mysterium

OCZ 550 W Fatality PSU
AMD Phenom I Quad core 9850 2.5 Ghz CPU overclocked to 2.8 Ghz
Thermalright Ultra 120 HSF with a 120mm Yate loon fan
Asrock N68-S Motherboard
4 gigs OCZ reaper 1066Mhz ram
Gigabyte GT 240 1 GB video card
1 DVD reader and 1 DVD burner
40 in 1 card reader
Samsung 500GB F3 hard drive
2 12" CCFL UV Lights
A Programmable fan in the window reading Merry Christmas and Kelley's name
The other case fans are Yate loon UV 120mm fans

I threw a few games in for her to get started, Oblivion, Fable, Fear, and a few others.


Unsuspecting victim (damn red eye)

http://www.kodakgallery.com/imaging-site/services/doc/5564:392353332311/jpeg/BG


Can't figure out why I'm giving her a keyboard, but likes the wireless. She's very nice and thankful.


http://www.kodakgallery.com/imaging-site/services/doc/5665:203353332311/jpeg/BG


Starting to understand what she's getting, she starts to open the case.


http://www.kodakgallery.com/imaging-site/services/doc/5506:151843332311/jpeg/BG


My belly invades the scene as she inspects the computer, everyone is almost as happy as she is!


http://www.kodakgallery.com/imaging-site/services/doc/5233:557223332311/jpeg/BG


I plug it in in the kitchen so she can see the UV lighting and the fan lighting up her name.


http://www.kodakgallery.com/imaging-site/services/doc/5507:787943332311/jpeg/BG


I am the best big brother EVER!


I need to extend thanks to everyone who helped me with this project, mostly my wonderful and patient wife (who is probably wondering what I'm doing right now). This was truly a labor of love that at times was extremely frustrating, very educational, and also one of the most rewarding things I've done in a while.

The other project is almost finished as well, I'll be posting a blog on that project soon. I reckon I'll be done in the next few weeks. I've also purchased items for my next big mod, this one will be for myself and is going to be amazing. :hello: 

!