Pre-Conditioning In The Oil Bath
Initial tests of the
Athlon FX-55 system were conducted in a plastic tray. In the picture you can also see a Zalman cooler; it was no longer used this way in the final system. After the failures with distilled water, we quickly switched to oil.
After the failed trial runs with de-ionized water, we quickly switched to oil. In contrast to water, this liquid has the crucial advantage that far fewer free ions (dangerous leak currents) are present. In the trials with water it had been determined that in the case of local shorts the components did not suffer any permanent damage. In the final analysis, the danger of losing $2,000 worth of hardware within a few minutes was thus averted.
Temperature readings at major points of the platform in the oil bath.
A compelling prerequisite for stable operation is the use of a heat sink - required equally for the processor, graphics chip and the chipset. A heat sink was used for the AMD Athlon FX-55 that only had its cooling fan removed and thus worked passively. The Zalman cooler shown in the pictures was no longer used later in the final Plexiglas case. As for the GeForce 6800 Ultra graphics card, only the metallic heat sink remained. The chipset ventilator from Gigabyte K8NXP-SLI did not exactly promise great results and thus was disconnected; after all, the fan's blades are not designed for low RPMs that result from high friction resistance in the liquid.
The temperature readings at the important points proved that the oil liquid was sufficient to cool the chips passively in continuous operation. And so we were able to find a suitable case.
Reading of the temperature on the Zalman cooler by means of metal feelers.