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[MNPCTech] Project: Rebel Alliance CMII

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January 6, 2013 7:59:35 PM

Hello everybody!

As some of you may know, I have been working closely with Bill Owen at MNPCTech over the past year learning and soaking up as much as I can as his intern. We have done several case reviews and mod guides together, and it is time for me to step it up a notch and take on a big themed build.



- Theme -



This is going to be influenced by oldschool Star Wars, and specifically Rebel Alliance equipment. I love the look of their gear, machinery, technology, and spacecraft, so this will take many ideas from that. We're starting with the Cosmos II, and will end up with something that looks dramatically different in the end.


I first must thank CoolerMaster for the sponsorship of the Cosmos II and Silent Pro Hybrid 1300w powersupply, EK for sponsoring the watercooling components, Lutro0 for sponsoring their beautiful sleeving work, Mayhems for supplying their world class coolants and dyes, Cheapskate for dedicating his time into designing custom waterblocks for the 680s, Brian Garrity for his time as the camera man for the upcoming video of this project, and of course Bill and MNPCTech for everything he has taught me and given me during my time working with him.












- Components -

Asus Rampage IV Extreme
Intel 3930k
Quad SLI GTX 680 Classified's
32gb of Corsair Dominator 2133mhz
CoolerMaster Silent Pro Hybrid 1300w
512gb Vertex 4 SSD
3x 3tb Seagate 7,200rpm storage drives
Cosmos II
Full dual loop EK watercooling setup with custom GPU waterblocks designed by our very own Cheapskate

  • Supremacy Elite socket 2011 Nickel CPU block
  • R4E Nickel CSQ mobo block
  • 2x Ram Dominator X4 blocks
  • 2x 480 XT radiators
  • 2x DDC-3.2TP pumps
  • 2x X3 150mm res
  • Black Nickel fittings
  • Custom Classified blocks by munkeybutt

  • Time for the pics to do the talking!


    The Cosmos II



    It's a bird. It's a plane...



    Cosmos II opened up - I hate that mess of useless crap dangling there.



    The build will feature MNPCTech's new Cosmos II Full Acrylic window side panel! Available soon for order. This is a serious chunk of acrylic!






    More to come soon! We'll have a video worklog as well, so make sure you subscribe to MNPCTech's Youtube Channel!
    January 6, 2013 8:01:05 PM


    A few components going into the system



    Classified unboxing



    These cards are bigger than 690's...



    Shiny!



    Why is quad sli not overkill? 6000x1080-across-three-monitors-gaming is why. Even the Rebel Alliance has to game from time to time!


    Stripping down the CMII for some modding.



    Taping off the top to cut room for a 480mm rad.



    Lining up the top rad



    Cages removed to make room for a 480mm rad in the front



    Creating the mounting system for the 480 in the front bezel


    January 6, 2013 8:01:55 PM


    Rad mounted into front bezel. I will be doing more in between the rad and the edges to make it more connected.



    Front rad mounted in the case



    I wanted to do something special with the edge frame work, so I decided on cutting out slots and putting some modders mesh behind it



    Clamping down the mesh for some epoxying



    This stuff is the best for all kinds of modding. Epoxy of the gods I say!



    Removing the stock top panel mesh



    Mounting a hinge on the top panel for some flap movement



    Watercooling time! Supremacy 2011 block and black nickel fittings



    I love the frosty tops on these blocks!



    DDC's and tops


    Related resources
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    January 6, 2013 8:32:48 PM


    An army of black nickel fittings! So prettttttty!


    -- Updates 1/1/13 --


    Thanks for following guys! Here are some updates on what is in the works...




    Measuring out pieces to make dual res holder from 1/4" thick Black Opaque acrylic sheet



    Custom Dual Res tube holder for the EK Res X3s



    EK Res X3s, ready for mounting



    What remains of the factory front I/O, this was part of the CM II's top panel. This will flip open.



    Modified "Laurey" style cabinet hinge, this spring loaded, and found at WoodCraft, http://www.woodcraft....ount-Pair.aspx



    Spacer for hinge made from 1/8" acrylic, this will be painted later



    Dual EK Res X3s mounted. This location will be ideal when it's time to fill the two loops.



    The flip cover, creates easy access for inspecting the loops, if ever needed in the future.



    The rear cover flips open now too!


    January 6, 2013 9:55:34 PM


    I wanted to use an ipod touch for monitoring and fan control. This will be mounted in the front top panel and running through the Bitfenix Recon phone app.



    Making the front phone mount



    Initial looks of the front phone fan control module. Think Luke Skywalker's targeting computer ;) />



    Custom shroud for the reservoirs


    -- Update 1/6/13 --

    Update time! I appreciate the comments and follows guys! I'm very dedicated to making this a very clean build internally, which is why shrouding everything is a must. I also want to keep the interior of the case very open and uncluttered, so there will be next to nothing inside the main compartment other than the mobo and what's attached to it. No drives, pumps, anything located here. It's all about the aesthetics!


    Cutting 1/4" thick cast acrylic to use as a shroud for the lower portion of the chassis



    1/4" acrylic over lower portion which will be easily removable with thumbscrews, 1/8" acrylic shroud on back wall will hide liquid tubing



    The mid section has 1/2" thick acrylic floor so it's flush with the outter edge of the chassis



    Using weld-on to attach lip to the tubing shroud for the back wall of the chassis, this will be painted later to match the exterior of the case.



    Temporarily installing Mnpctech's CM II clear panel to determine the two 120mm fan hole openings in the removable lower chassis shroud





    a b ) Power supply
    January 6, 2013 10:54:45 PM

    great zeus nice hardware, cant wait to see the final product andrew :D 
    January 15, 2013 2:09:57 AM


    The epoxy on the side bezels has dried and I really like how they look with the mesh



    Now it's time to do the same thing with the non-window'ed side panel. Cutting the double layered panel was a bit of a challenge, but it's cleaned up and time for more epoxy. I plan to mount an acrylic Rebel Alliance logo on the mesh and illuminate it.


    As far as the custom classified waterblocks are concerned, Cheapskate has made great progress (though he has reminded me how complex these little buggers are going to be ;) /> This is current design phase with an "X Wing" style backplate that will have the Rebel Alliance logo in the red circle. The layers in the pic are backplate, full copper block, acrylic top, and stainless top cover.





    Time for another update!


    Taping off a section of the side panel to cut an opening that will be backed with mesh and a Rebel Alliance logo



    Mmmmmm hot plastic spray



    Cleaning up the back side of the opening - not an easy task with the over engineered cosmos II side panels



    The triple layer madness has been dominated.



    Time to clean up the cut with a hand file



    The side panels just feel really bland from the factory, so a few more additions will help to add some character to the Starwars tech feel


    January 15, 2013 2:11:26 AM


    To mount two of the three 3.5" drives, I'll be using 1/8" cast acrylic for a mounting plate



    The drives will be hidden behind the PSU and attached with thumb screws



    The stock support was removed and a custom beam was created with 1" thick acrylic which the hard drive mounting plate attaches to



    For the rear case fan, the stock grill was removed with a jigsaw and 18 TPI bi-metal cutting blade



    I'll be using a combination of a custom one-off grill and Mnpctech 120mm Overkill ring. I have yet to decide on exactly what combination, as a few options look good.











    Dropping in the EK waterblocks for a preliminary test fitting.



    Spacing things out in the case. Subsequently Bill finds out I'm OCD about watercooling tubing and fittings :p />


    January 15, 2013 2:12:21 AM


    Getting up close and personal with the preliminary fitting



    Everything is coming together nicely. The front will be covered by a huge 480mm machined grill and shrouding around the edges up to the fans. Materials TBD



    Cable management will be super clean as we have created a custom acrylic plate that the mobo is mounting on, and this allows for slots to be cut behind the mobo instead of next to it avoiding a visual mess.


    More to come soon! We'll have a video worklog as well, so make sure you subscribe to MNPCTech's Youtube Channel!
    February 11, 2013 12:23:57 PM

    We're drawing up the front intake shroud and finalizing the gpu blocks... Andrew will installing Mnpctech's Machined aluminum "Diamond Knurl" pc case feet on his CM II, which are made in HAAS cnc lathe.





    The base diameter is 1- 3/4" with height of 1" to elevate the case for improved airflow beneath it.



    They've been painted House of Kolor Kandy Red

    February 21, 2013 12:01:44 PM

    Here are screen shots of the custom water blocks and liquid channeled bridge designed by Cheapskate. The blocks will be milled from Copper with Clear acrylic cover and top plate with design inspired by X-Wing fighter wing.These are for Andrew's eVga 680 GTX Classified graphics cards.









    February 23, 2013 9:57:11 PM

    This look sick , very cool
    March 19, 2013 6:02:29 AM



    AC: "Hello, This is Aqua Computer Support.

    Me: ..."Ah Yes, I'm looking for the Local Chinese Take-Out Listings option on your Aquaero...."

    AC:.. "Ok, Do you have your remote control handy?, Just scroll down to page 189, It's right under "Tracking Your Lost Dog with Aquaero GPS"


    Silly, but looking at all of the options makes me feel old, so Andrew will love tinkering with it. Yesterday I made Red Overlay to match the color scheme and installed Andrew's Aquaero into the shroud for the chassis.

    Aqua Computer's Aquaero product page, http://www.aquacompu.../aquaero-5.html













    Removing masking tape over window for phoyba RGB light strip



    Cutting Red Transparent Acrylic Window sheet into overlay for the Aqua Computer Aquaero





    March 31, 2013 5:52:26 AM

    On Friday, Mosquito came into the shop as volunteer camera man :thumb: so we'll be posting another video update of our progress soon. We installed the EK 480 radiator in the ceiling of the Cosmos II, I'll get photos posted soon! and the Alphacool NexXxoS UT60 Full Copper Quad 120mm Radiator will go in the front

    http://www.frozencpu.com/products/14987/ex-rad-341/Alph...



    I liked the Copper fasteners they include!

    April 2, 2013 5:31:07 PM

    Andrew and I installed the EK 480 radiator with the 120mm Typhoon cooling fans. The EK Reservoir caps, Radiator shroud and Typhoon blades were painted in the same Grey and Red paint, used to paint the exterior of the Cosmos II case. We'll have another update soon!



    April 10, 2013 9:34:06 AM

    The goal is hiding all of the tubing out of sight.

    Andrew in the workshop, he revised the connectors a bit and started routing the lines and tubing for the 480 EK radiator on top. This radiator has it's own EK Res on top, the other EK Res will connect to the front 480 for the quad 680GTXs. I recorded his progress for Part 3 of the videos highlighting his build, that will be posted HERE. Notice there is no cable holes in the MB tray for the ASUS Rampage IV, the lutro0 individually sleeved cables will curl and tuck under the MB. The Typhoon fans were painted to match the red on the exterior of the case.







    April 20, 2013 7:33:13 AM

    Update on Andrew's Intern build, I sent our files for the four water blocks to another shop for Quote, I don't know if you heard recent Mod Zoo Podcast, but I mentioned in Opening, that last quote we got for four 680 GTX Classified water block assemblies to be made, was $5,500...Higher than we expected, but Mnpctech can't make the blocks, since their machines are tied to retail part commitments for this year.... So, as it stands, if this other shop's Quote is too much, Andrew is considering selling off his four 680 GTX classifieds for $550 apiece, shipped....He will purchase different video cards and use retail blocks, which would most likely be from EK.
    April 21, 2013 11:39:43 AM

    Love your work man! Can't wait to see how it all turns out! GOOD LUCK! :D 
    May 1, 2013 3:21:39 PM

    Thank you! Andrew and I have been busy, but haven't forgotten about sharing updates. We've got gap between production runs coming up and Cheaps offered to make the acrylic covers, so looks like we'll be back on track soon! crossing fingers and Roboduck offered his help in rendering the front intake shroud for the Cosmos II.

    May 7, 2013 12:45:47 PM

    Here is what the Clear side panel looks like installed on the Cosmos II. It's cnc machined from .5" thick Chemcast Cast Acrylic with two 120mm fan holes with fastener holes for your own fan grills.

    FrozenCPU is offering Cosmos II Clear Side Panel that was made by Mnpctech





    May 22, 2013 3:28:56 PM

    video screen shot, of the backside of front bezel being milled, we're in the shop right now... I'll have better pics posted soon..
     




    Roboduck's rendering the front intake shroud for the Cosmos II.

    June 3, 2013 6:26:52 AM

    Here is photos while Milling the front 480 radiator grill bezel from 1.5" thick block of 6061 billet. The backside has been hollowed out, to save weight. the design was inspired by jet engine intakes.













    June 21, 2013 7:44:20 AM

    It does look nice in silver, but I fear it will contrast terribly with the custom paint
    June 22, 2013 10:43:06 AM

    the final touch is the shroud, with engraving, project name "Rebel A"





    July 11, 2013 6:03:25 AM

    The front 480 bezel is finished! We'll be installing it onto the front when the vandal switches arrive this weekend.





    July 12, 2013 7:46:07 AM

    It sounds like the vandal switches won't be arriving on time for us to install the bezel this weekend, so we'll have to wait till next week for that. This weekend we'll be working connecting all of the fans and PSU cable management

    Here is some screen shots from footage Andrew and I recorded while working on Part4 of "Rebel A" video.. this was few days before we painted the bezel.











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    July 13, 2013 9:02:16 AM

    we're working on cable management next, and if all goes as planned, you'll just see the connections along the edges of the motherboard....
    July 15, 2013 3:15:02 PM

    In the workshop with Andrew yesterday, the bulgin switches were shipped late, and won't arrive on time to mount the bezel permanently. Andrew made more headway on CPU loop while I cable tied PSU cables into crevices. We were so focused, didn't grab a lot of photos, but I will scan for screen shots later while editing video. Andrew took this pic of the bezel temporarily mounted, without the fans.... until the switches arrive this week.

    July 22, 2013 5:45:16 AM

    Thanks for watching and commenting guys! Made more headway yesterday. Andrew finished the CPU loop and filled it. We had one leak from a connection not fully tightened, FYI: Surgical Gloves are great for griping and tightening "knurled" compression fittings and you won't shred your finger tips.

    Hes currently pondering Evga's GTX 780 Classified Hydro Copper cards when released, unless EK will make blocks for the Classified, which we're doubting.. In meantime, hes running my old ATI Radeon 4890 from my old Wolfenstein build, which oddly fits the color theme of this build.



    July 25, 2013 2:46:16 PM

    More progress photos while Andrew finished the CPU Loop on Sunday.





    July 28, 2013 6:26:25 PM

    ... we started the cable management today and installation of RGB LED strips, and will post photos soon!
    July 31, 2013 8:34:30 AM

    Andrew ordered 3x 780 EVGA Classifieds yesterday, we're back on track :clap:

    We're installing Bitfenix Alchemy & Phoyba RGB LED Strips, we started installation yesterday while recording video, I grabbed a couple stills while focusing primarily on tidying wires and cables behind the motherboard...









    July 31, 2013 10:54:36 AM

    Bringout the Sexyness of the Cosmos II :lol: 
    August 6, 2013 9:08:11 AM

    Thank you Genzo!

    I'm still waiting...



    oh, there they are!



    Now wheres the blocks?!
    August 21, 2013 5:08:47 PM

    Andrew made some serious progress...Just a few hardware pr0n shots to hold over until we get back at it this weekend.











    August 29, 2013 9:38:20 AM

    Andrew is fine tuning the Cooler master Cosmos II we've modified, and should start posting Bench marks soon, here is some pics from this morning.










    August 31, 2013 8:55:19 AM

    haha, Thanks guys!

    At Radar Studios for photo session, I'll share more pics soon!

    September 2, 2013 8:37:12 AM

    More "behind the scenes" pics of the photo session at radar studios in minneapolis, and I asked Andrew to share his bench marks when he has chance...









    September 13, 2013 7:52:27 AM

    The "Rebel A" PC









    November 11, 2013 9:02:19 AM

    "Rebel A" PC has been published in December issue of CustomPC. Andrew & I Thank you for the opportunity!!!



    !