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  • Jaycius' New System Build Log - 56K WARNING

    Well first of all, hello to everyone who is about to read this great undertaking of mine. Its not my first build and certainly won't be the last, but I feel that since doing The AAXIS Project (my current system) just over 5 years ago that now is time for change.

    So... what's the kit gonna be I hear you all ask? Simple answer - not decided yet. I will look at bits and choose as I go through the build process. This is not gonna be a quick build for a number of reasons, which I will list below :
    • GAMEPLAY
      The reason we're all on TG!! I'm not giving up my gaming while I build this - that's just wrong.
    • MONEY
      Yes, that giant of evil that binds us all together whether we have it or not. While not able to go too crazy on parts, I'm estimating a budget of around 2500-3000 for this one (somewhere between $4200-4800 at current rates). That covers case and internals, as well as keyboard, mouse and an official copy of Windows 7 (maybe 8 - not sure yet).
    • TIME/WORK/SOCIAL LIFE
      I have a job (not currently there due to injury but will return shortly), I have a life to lead. Everything shares time and this build will be in there somewhere. Estimated completion towards the end of the 2011.
    • HEALTH
      As mentioned above I'm currently injured due to a motorbike accident on 28th Dec 2010. This resulted in a dislocated and shattered left shoulder. Here's a few xray piccies to give you all an idea of the damage and why I'm slightly limited in what I can do at the moment.


      Dislocation xray - 28-12-2010 by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr


      CT Scan 1 - 28-12-2010 by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr


      Humerus Damage Xray - Feb2011 by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr
    Last edited by Jaycius; 04-18-2011, 03:31 PM.


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  • #2
    Re: Jaycius' New System Build Log - 56K WARNING

    BRAND SPANKING NEW!
    ===============


    OK, HERE WE GO! This is the case that the build will now centre around, the slightly old but still excellent Coolermaster Cosmos S, supplied very kindly by my other half, WarFairy. (Ain't it cool when ya get a present? :icon_cool )

    My current case is a silver Silverstone TJ-07, bought when they first came out, so this mod and indeed case has something to live upto. Anyway, let me introduce you to this baby, fresh out of its packaging...


    Front view by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr


    Side view by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr


    Upper rear view by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr


    Upper front, door closed by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr


    Upper front, ports by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr


    Rear view by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr


    Side panel removed, rear side by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr


    Internal view by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr

    I've already started work on modding this so more pics to come very soon.
    Last edited by Jaycius; 04-18-2011, 03:50 PM.


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    • #3
      Re: Jaycius' New System Build Log - 56K WARNING

      OOPS!! Quality Control...
      ===============


      After drooling and dreaming, scheming up a few ideas and getting a vague plan in my mind, I started with a simple look at the internals. Removing the HDD drive cage to test fit the intended drive I encountered my first hurdle... Take a look and see if you can figure out the problem.


      Quality control issue by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr

      OK, for those of you who can't see the problem...



      Left side - all OK by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr


      Right side - not OK by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr


      Anyone have a spirit level? by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr

      So, as you can see, the hard drives are simply not gonna fit in here. Quite an oversight for Coolermaster's quality control team. Anyhow, I've emailed their customer support and they've agreed to send a replacement through to sort this.
      Last edited by Jaycius; 04-18-2011, 04:16 PM.


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      • #4
        Re: Jaycius' New System Build Log - 56K WARNING

        BABY, YOU CAN DRIVE MY CAR
        ===================


        Inspired for some time during the case consideration phase by the mod-god Coolmiester and his 2008 SkullTrail casemod, I've invested in a pair of aftermarket car bonnet air intake vents. These are designed for the Peugeot 206 and retail here in the UK for anything from 17.99 to 44.99 on a basic web search.


        Peugeot 206 replacement bonnet vent by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr

        Much like Coolmiester's casemod these are a left and right matching pair to go on both the left and right side panels of the case. As I said, however, its inspiration and I do not plan on a system copy. I'm just hoping I can come somewhere close to it being as good looking...


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        • #5
          Re: Jaycius' New System Build Log - 56K WARNING

          LOST IN TRANSLATION
          ==============



          Wrong parts shipped by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr

          Well I happily accepted my box from CoolerMaster off my postman and rushed to open it up. The smile soon dropped to a frown and a state of confused.com... Why? Becasue they had sent the wrong parts to fix the problem. Instead of a new side panel or replacement drive cage, they sent me 2 new side panels that fit into the blue circles at the side of the drive cage. I honestly don't know if they didn't understand English mixed with the initial photo above but I'd expect anyone to see that blunder if they are in the IT trade, even moreso if its their own product! LOL

          Another explanation of the problem with the previous photos and I think we have an understanding at both ends now. They have agreed to ship me another part out tomorrow (15th April) - although did not specify if its a full drive cage or a new side panel to fit myself...

          Either way, their support is top-notch and I can't fault them on that.


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          • #6
            Re: Jaycius' New System Build Log - 56K WARNING

            LET THE GAMES BEGIN
            ==============


            "Where's the modding?" I hear you all cry. :row__591: Don't fret, young Padewan's, the force is strong with this one.


            Side vent modding #1 by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr

            Here we have the aftermarket air vent being modded. This is where it all began... I removed the chrome bars and decided I didn't like the grill. Plastic and ugly in my opinion. So using some pliers I hacked a few of the pieces out so I've got a starting point for a hacksaw later on.



            Side vent modding #2 by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr

            Hacking the side vent continues on the opposite side for the same reason.



            Side vent modding #3 by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr

            A slow job and one that is not so easy to do with my injured arm, which got achey very quickly. This was the result at the end of day one.


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            • #7
              Re: Jaycius' New System Build Log - 56K WARNING

              HACK-A-DAY
              ==========



              Side vent modding #4 by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr

              A few days later and the hacksaw comes out to play. Was a little awkward having to keep undo it and reposition it to just get to this stage.



              Side vent modding #5 by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr

              A quick coffee break later, followed by a quick test with the chrome bars in place. Looking good - so let's get back to the cutting.



              Side vent modding #6 by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr

              Work continues with the hacksaw. Quite a close cut in the end meaning less work to do filing these pieces down.



              Side vent modding #7 by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr

              Turning the vent over I decided to use the hacksaw to give a good cut along the back. Made the mistake of cutting through the screw holders - thought 'b******s to it' - carried on until it was all done.



              Side vent modding #8 by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr

              Be warned - cutting this stuff makes for one hell of a mess. Plastic dust everywhere!!



              Side vent modding #9 by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr

              Lots of bits and pile of plastic dust. The results of a productive afternoon.



              Side vent modding #10 by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr

              Tired out and another achey arm day - calling it quits for now.



              Side vent modding #11 by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr

              Another quick bar test - I have a habit of always doing this when I mod something just to make sure I'm happy with it.
              Last edited by Jaycius; 04-18-2011, 04:37 PM. Reason: renamed title


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              • #8
                Re: Jaycius' New System Build Log - 56K WARNING

                MARCHING IN FILE
                ============


                Another new day, another bash at the side vent.


                Side vent modding #12 by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr

                A quick shot of the vent lined up against the case side panel where I'm thinking of putting it. Very nice indeed.



                Side vent modding #13 by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr

                Quite a bit of filing the next day results in this. Theres still some filing and shaping to go to get it perfect but I'm content to leave it here for now. (14th April 2011)


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                • #9
                  Re: Jaycius' New System Build Log - 56K WARNING

                  A QUICK WIN
                  =========



                  Side Panel Mods #1 by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr

                  Well after deciding I didn't like the standard cover for the side panel, or the shape of the window, I wanted a clean slate to work on.

                  So I switched the sides over by undoing the metal supports on the back of each and swapping the top and bottom over, leaving the side ones off both as they interefered with the fit. This works and both side panels fit just as they would.

                  Obviously I have the above hole at the back of the mobo tray now - something to work on for later...


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                  • #10
                    Re: Jaycius' New System Build Log - 56K WARNING

                    THE ONLY WAY IS UP
                    =============



                    Case top modding #1 by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr

                    Next object to attract my modding interest - the top of the case. So much to do - so little time. Well - time doesn't really come into it...

                    Anyway, the top vent cover was removed, exposing the 3 bays for the fans at the top.



                    Case top modding #2 by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr

                    Turning the top vent over and looking at the back section reveals this ugly little sucker. The plastic support at the back looks like it was an afterthought on case design.

                    I don't like it and it interferes with an idea I have so its gonna go anyway.



                    Case top modding #3 by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr

                    SNAP! Regardless of care while unscrewing this, it breaks off from the back of the vent cover anyway. That just reinforced my opinion that this was an afterthought and a poor piece of the design.



                    Case top modding #4 by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr

                    Closer inspection reveals its main purpose was to keep the grill in place. Awful!! Oh - and it has a thumbscrew to lock it onto the back of the chassis. Big deal...



                    Case top modding #5 by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr

                    Either way this does not concern me at all as the part is not needed for what I intend to do.



                    Case top modding #6 by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr

                    Black mesh removed and the vent flipped over for a quick look



                    Case top modding #7 by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr

                    Turning it back over reveals the ugly plasticness of this upper part. Its flimsy as it is now and I really don't like that skeletal support grid. Yet another victim on my list...



                    Case top modding #8 by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr

                    Remember I said I had an idea for that back end? Well this is it! One dodgy hacksaw that still managed to do the job and I cut the end off, separating it from the fan cover. My evil plan for this will be revealed at a later stage...



                    Case top modding #9 by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr

                    With the top vent out of the way, you can see the plastic for the side panels at the top. Fair bit of space in there so may come in useful later...



                    Case top modding #10 by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr

                    The back shows two of the 'feet' for securing the upper handles of the case. Screws removed and onto the front we go so I can get these handles off and put to one side. I've already removed the two from the bottom of the case at this point.



                    Case top modding #11 by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr

                    The upper panel housing the ports and power button needs to be removed to be able to get to the final two feet so that I can remove the upper handles. Off she comes by undoing the 2 screws and sliding the whole assembly forward off the case.


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                    • #11
                      Re: Jaycius' New System Build Log - 56K WARNING

                      ITS A POWER PLAY
                      ============


                      The ports and power button are housed at the top of the case with a large bunch of cabling being routed down the right side internally. To be brutally honest I don't need anything but the USB ports here - the rest are really of no use to me.

                      So I've decided they are my next victim.


                      Power button section mod #1 by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr



                      Power button section mod #2 by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr

                      The housing section unsecured and the top removed, showing the power button and HDD LED circuitry on the right, with the ports circuitry below and to the left.



                      Power button section mod #3 by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr

                      Close-up of the circuitry for the power button



                      Power button section mod #4 by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr




                      Power button section mod #5 by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr

                      Doing what I do best - disassembling it from the housing. Here's the wiring for the ports circuit board. Always a wise move to get pics of the cabling before you undo it - just in case...



                      Power button section mod #6 by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr



                      Power button section mod #7 by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr

                      Power button cables reference and close-up



                      Power button section mod #8 by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr

                      As I am either going to relocate the ports or not bother using them at all, I don't need the extra plastic in the housing. A quick line-up and this has been removed.



                      Power button section mod #9 by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr

                      Decided I didn't like the red bar along the front of the housing section and snapped it off easily. Its just a thin, cheap strip of plastic that snaps easily.

                      Once the red line was removed I took this piccie and immediately had an idea come to mind. Initially it was going to be filled in and sanded, but I have a better idea...

                      Two words : "Hello Michael"



                      Power button section mod #10 by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr

                      To do what I have in mind, the back of the bar needs to go. Starting with the centre hole and a small file, a hole was made for a slightly bigger flat file. This was used to file along the edge bit by bit - very time consuming.



                      Power button section mod #11 by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr

                      Using the thin flat file, progress was slow and tedious - and again lots of plastic dust. Cough, cough...



                      Power button section mod #12 by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr

                      More pain from my shoulder meant I didn't do a great job on the other side and they are out of shape with each other. I will work on that later on - but heres a sata cable behind it to give me an idea of what to expect.



                      Power button section mod #13 by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr




                      Power button section mod #14 by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr

                      Test-fitting the board seems fine, and putting the housing back on seems to be good - am happy with the result.



                      Power button section mod #15 by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr

                      Still something about that sliding door that I do not like. Hate it when something bugs me during a mod. VICTIM!



                      Power button section mod #16 by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr

                      Well its not like I need the port holders now anyway, so why not remove the lot? Thats the plan next.



                      Power button section mod #17 by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr

                      A lot of filing, cutting, filing and more filing later... Its getting there. Still far from complete.



                      Power button section mod #18 by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr

                      Another quick test fit. Liking this already



                      Power button section mod #19 by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr

                      Test fitting view from above, showing me the space inside I now have to work with.

                      And that, folks, finally brings me up-to-date for now... Shall bring you more updates as and when I can.
                      Last edited by Jaycius; 04-18-2011, 05:30 PM. Reason: correction


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                      • #12
                        Re: Jaycius' New System Build Log - 56K WARNING

                        113 views as of today and not a single comment? Is my build really that bad? LOL. More updates coming later today. Constructive feedback and comments welcome from you all.


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                        • #13
                          Re: Jaycius' New System Build Log - 56K WARNING

                          COVER ME!!
                          ========


                          15th April 2011

                          As the port housing internal space is now gone, and the sliding door above it, I have decided to play with a few ideas for a new cover.


                          Power button section mod #20 by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr

                          First up is this, using 2 of the front 5.25 bay bezel grills. Cutting equal lengths off each side and lining them up proves to be a good match, and the raised V angle matches the rest of the housing perfectly. Now I'm not sure if I will stick to this, but it may work out well as a template for a different cover. Don't know yet...


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                          • #14
                            Re: Jaycius' New System Build Log - 56K WARNING

                            BY YOUR COMMAND
                            =============


                            17th April 2011

                            Just a shot I was messing with of the other air vent. These things shine so much with light, and the way this photo shines just reminds me so much of a Centurion from the original Battlestar Galactica. (Now THAT would make an awesome PC case).


                            Side vent modding #14 by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr

                            19th April 2011

                            The air vent for the mobo side of the case, a slightly different affair compared to the other one as this is all one piece.


                            Side vent modding #15 by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr

                            The advantage : its already factory flattened on the back so relatively little work to do to stick it on.

                            The disadvantage : being one piece, the grill has no holes. Not a problem though as I will simply drill through them to create a ring to file/cut through.



                            Side vent modding #16 by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr

                            Completed the drilling and cutting late last night (had to get someone else to do this one as my arm just couldn't handle the tools), now theres plenty of filing to do. That will keep me busy for a day or two...


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                            • #15
                              Re: Jaycius' New System Build Log - 56K WARNING

                              A VIEW TO A KILL
                              ============


                              17th April 2011

                              Bored with plastic, I turn my attention to metal today in the form of the intended window side panel.

                              Not one for spending ages on fancy artwork, A quick splash around with a mouse in MSPaint with one of the previous photos gave me a rough representation of what I wanted for the window.

                              I give you - The Mockup...


                              Side Panel Mods #2 by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr



                              Side Panel Mods #3 by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr

                              To get cracking on this one, I turned it over and checked the line up of the vent against the back. As you can see in the photo it is sitting against the bottom metal bracket.



                              Side Panel Mods #4 by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr

                              Using the original window side panel as a template, I reversed the shape and used double sided light tape to mark the boundaries as a rough guide for the window I have in mind. I needed this initially to know where the metal brackets are so I can decide for definite on the lines.



                              Side Panel Mods #5 by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr

                              Some tweaking later and new strips put down to give me a better idea before committing ink to metal. Liking it. It goes with the vision of the mockup and I'm happy at the areas of the brackets that will be visible. There are ways around that later...



                              Side Panel Mods #6 by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr

                              Pen to paper, or in this case aluminium. The final cutting guide for the areas of the side panel I need cutting out. In the end, I took off the top metal bracket and used that as an edge distance guide and ruler - worked beautifully to what I had in mind with the tape. Also a great tool for shaping the corner curves too - simples!


                              19th April 2011

                              AAARRRGGGHHHHH!!!!!!!

                              Rule #1 when someone else works on your mod : make sure they keep within the lines!!

                              There is no way I am able to handle big power tools at the minute, so I asked for some help. The first attempt looked promising and then there was a loud snag and a jump. Result = power tool blade jumps across metal like a stone bouncing on water.


                              Side Panel Mods #7 by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr

                              Thats a fairly deep scratch and I was a little annoyed but hey - these things happen. Better the case than someone's finger or worse...

                              It is my own fault as I know better when doing this. Should have masked the front totally and took a template of the window, then applied it to the back. Ain't hindsight a wonderful thing... lol. Anyway, this is not as bad as it seems, and I have a solution to fix it.

                              --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                              TAKE NOTE OF THIS IF YOU'RE NEW TO MODDING - ITS SUCH AN EASY MISTAKE TO MAKE.

                              * MEASURE, MEASURE AGAIN, PREPARE, PREPARE AGAIN, AND THEN YOU GO AHEAD WITH EXTREME CARE & ATTENTION *

                              --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

                              Reverted to plan B : lots of drilling holes to assist in the cutting process. That has worked quite well and in the space of about 30-40 mins both holes were cut. Lots of filing left to do to shape the window properly.


                              Side Panel Mods #8 by Jaycius Arma, on Flickr

                              You're probably wondering why the Coolermaster logo is still there? Well it won't be for long. I plan on keeping that just in case it comes in useful later on, and will cut this out with a hacksaw as the powertools come with too high a risk with the space I've got left.

                              That's all up-to-date again for now. Will post more when I do something new.


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