Building a Water Cooled Rig for my Best m8, "TheSpunkster"

Kin Hell

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Not a very detailed Description of the build, I ain`t sure we have the Web Space, nor could I be arsed with taking photos for everything done. The project was completed in 22 days during spare time in the evenings & the weekends. Debs has been an absolute brick about the mess, so I hope the Mini cruise in July will help! :shock: (my wallet is really groaning)

Whats going under water:

Intel Core2 Duo Wolfdale. Default clock speed 3.0Ghz via D-Tek V2 CPU Block.
EVGA 780i Northbridge via a-nother NB Block!?
2 x nVidia 9600GT's via EK Water Blocks.
Fitting 1 x 2:120 Thermochill Radiator
Fitting 1 x 8 element Alluminium Passive Radiator
Fitting 1 x XSPC Dual 5.25" Reservoir.
Fitting 1 x Laing D5 Pump with Modified Impeller. :D
All hose is the rather expensive but very sexy Tygon R-3603 1/2" i/d tubing.

Special Thanks to Merlin for allowing me to post this project, which could be applied to almost any decent size case, though some are better made than others. I can`t off site link so bear with me whist I get the whole suite of Pics Labeled & descibed and then I`ll update the thread.

I also have to apologise on two counts to Zetro:

1st apology:
This project is gunno make you so hard, HW Pr0n just won`t ever be the same again for you! :mrgreen:

2nd apology:

Ur 060 CPU's are still untested because I got roped into building this Rig for Spunkster! :oops:
Despite this, I hope your other fetish is well catered for! :D

So, back to the plot...here`s a Pic of the Stripped Case to be modified.

IMG_0001.jpg



It`s a Cooler Master "Cosmos" case. As a standard Pee Cee case, it`s air flow is absolute bollox. The case itself is suprisingly well made, so whilst considering wielding a Gas Axe at it, (yeah, the Chassis is shitty Steel) consideration has to be taken into account RE making the case weaker for removing some key structural components, namely the crap Hard Drive mounts. Whilst Trick mount devices were used by Cooler Master, you end up bricking the front of the case up with Hard drives that have no direct air flow over them at all. The front of this Cooler Master case has no provision for any fans either. The front door is now removed & will stay off for ever. Case is stripped of all external Plastic trims apart from the front Black plastic trim. The pic doesn`t show a nice Black Metal mesh over the Plastic. So the sublime trickery is going to be removing the Mesh intact, cutting 2 x 120mm fan apertures in the black plastic & then replacing the Mesh covering the draw apertures for the Fans which will mount inside the case. Obviously, we also need to hack 2 x 120mm fan apertures into that horrible steel chassis front & get some air into the thing!

Tools used are:
Black & Decker Workmate
Metabo Hammer Drill
Lots of drills.
M3 m/c Tap for making M3 Threads
Screwdrivers
Flat File
Half round File
Round File
Big Balls.......

The Pic below shows the drive cage area to be removed, leaving just the 5.25" Drive bays in the Case

IMG_0002.jpg
 
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Harrison

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Re: Building a Water Cooled Rig for my Best m8, "TheSpunkster"

"TheSpunkster". Didn't go by the name DJSpunk a couple of years back did he?
 

Zetr0

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Re: Building a Water Cooled Rig for my Best m8, "TheSpunkster"

Ahhhhh @Kin Hell

I still love ya :D

sounds a f*cking awesome bit of kit m8... and very far from the classic words "Entry Level" :D
 

Kin Hell

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Re: Building a Water Cooled Rig for my Best m8, "TheSpunkster"

Harrison said:
"TheSpunkster". Didn't go by the name DJSpunk a couple of years back did he?

No H, sorry! :)
 

TheCorfiot

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Re: Building a Water Cooled Rig for my Best m8, "TheSpunkster"

Kin.............Sounds really awesome,,,,

Where's the pix, Where's the pix, Where's the pix.

:LOL:

Good luck with it mate

:mrgreen:
 

Kin Hell

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Re: Building a Water Cooled Rig for my Best m8, "TheSpunkster"

Okay, Pic problem now resolved.
Here`s the Hard drive cage removed:


IMG_0003.jpg


This is offering an unused Lian Li 120mm adjustable fan mount for a hack up to make the hard drive mounting.


IMG_0005.jpg


The bracket has some nice profiles so after some hacking around & filing, drill & tap a few holes, we end up with this:


IMG_0006.jpg


Here`s the Hard Drive assembly locked in place.

IMG_0007.jpg



Underneath the bottom plate is a Spaced toungue which locates in the Rear window of the hard drive mounting. Once slid into place, the little Thumb Srcew via the Locking plate secures the hard drive assembly to the mounting.
What no one knows though, I had to re-think this 6 times on the fly, whist still using what I originally started with. Last problem was mounting the Mount. So many slots & holes for the Plastic trim to go back on. Overall though, the results are good! Hard drive temps & case temps will really be good for this. Front of Chassis now has 2 x 120mm fans. ....Pretty fookin trick tbh! :mrgreen:

More to come. :D
 
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Harrison

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Re: Building a Water Cooled Rig for my Best m8, "TheSpunkster"

Kin Hell said:
Harrison said:
"TheSpunkster". Didn't go by the name DJSpunk a couple of years back did he?

No H, sorry! :)

OK. Not to worry. DJSpunk was a very good member of CA. But we suddenly lost contact with him in 2003.
 

Kin Hell

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Re: Building a Water Cooled Rig for my Best m8, "TheSpunkster"

K folks...we have a bit of a problem here. The Rig has been Finished & I have pics here of it as it was. However, there has been a change of Direction RE: the choice of Water Block for the CPU. Tbah, the one we used was shit in so far as, the restrictive nature of the CPU block itself. Whilst the Laing D5 Pump is pumping against a restrictive Passive Radiator, I felt the EK water block was hammering the pump too early on the loop. Consequently, the pump was making more noise than it should, whilst still being very acceptable.
The D-Tek FuZion V2 isn`t the free-ist of Blocks available, but the Temps are good & the flow will be significantly better than the EK block. This should make life easier for the D5 & might return some small improvements on Temps. With the Corner Exit on the V2 CPU Block, we will also have a nicer tubing curve from CPU to Northbridge. The original kit gave us a slightly squished pipe, again not helping flow.

Our supplier was at the Computex Show so the parts never arrived until today & I just don`t have the time to start the re-build untill tommorow. Pics will have to be re-taken as well, so I need around another week to get the final pics & info uploaded.

Back soon folks! :D
 

Zetr0

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Re: Building a Water Cooled Rig for my Best m8, "TheSpunkster"

Looking forward to it my friend :D
 

Kin Hell

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Re: Building a Water Cooled Rig for my Best m8, "TheSpunkster"

Okay folks, here`s the continuing story. Web space is somewhat borking the quantity & quality of pics for this description. All the pics you end up viewing are 50 - 65% smaller than the originals so I can only apologise for the lack of picture desciption.

Flicking back to the hard drive Assembly, here is the underside plate showing the locating Tongue. Once this is slid into the rear window of the Hard drive mount, the locking plate & thmbscrew just locks everything in place.


IMG_0008.jpg


On the top of the case, we now have our measurement lines for all the reference points required for trim cutting, in particular, the Filler Plug mounting:


IMG_0009.jpg


...which is rather well engineered. The two middle screws on each side actually screw into the locking collar. Once the plastic top trim is cut out to fit over all this, the case should look rather sexy in a butch kind of way.


IMG_0011.jpg


After the top plastic trim is cut & fitted onto the case, the filler plug is screwed tight into the red filler body without it`s rubber `O` ring, thus clamping the plastic trim onto the filler plug mount. A sharp anti-clockwise shock on the Allen Key loosens the Filler plug, leaving the Red flange of the filler plug sandwiching the top plastic trim to the Filler plug mount. Well Solid! Again, the filler plug mount is made from bits of angle aluminium Lian Li brackets I had lying about. Holes are drilled 2.5mm & tapped M3, which is the thread size of the Fine threaded screws found in most Pee Cee cases these days. These threads are found in the sides of your CD/DVD Roms, floppies etc, but NOT in your hard drives. They are an Imperial/American thread. Such was the fit of this to the case, those cable ties wern`t really needed to hold the pipe on the Filler plug barb. The bulge of the tube over the bard was compressed as the 4 screws through the case secured the bracket to the top of the case. The hole edged with white plastic trim just locked it all in place really well.

On the underside of things now, heres the supply tube from the filler plug to the `T` block. This will be where we bleed the air from the system, but more on this later.

IMG_0014.jpg



These two pics are for a bit of guidance more than anything. Seeing all this rig come together, the PSU was looking rather sorry for itself. Managing to open it without busting the security seal, here`s the results of smoking in a room without ventilation of any sort & also having a fetish for pussy cats. Their friggin hair is stickier than shit itself. Couple that with sticky nicotine, here`s the result & the next result from this is a fire. It`s just waiting to happen..so to all of you...even non-smokers & pet lovers...Hoover your computer area regulary. If you do smoke, always have a window open or use Vaseline!

Before:

IMG_0016.jpg



After:

IMG_0018.jpg



Deciding on the exact location of the Pump was a bit tricky. Below the Reservoir is usually best, giving the pump a bit of a head start, but not so low that it becomes the most bottom device on the water circuit. This will but a bigger load on the pump having a bigger head to deal with. Also, I wanted to give clean lines to the whole build, so we don`t end up with a spiders web array of tubes & electrical wires. After some careful considerations, out came the gas axe & we split the home made 5.25" lower tray plate thus:

IMG_0021.jpg



As you can see in the next pic, positioning the pump in this manner has done several things.
1: It has beautiful tubing lines from the Reservoir feed above it.
2: No air flow blockage on the upper front 120mm Fan.
3: Water flow from the pump is upward & onto the CPU block again offering clear tubing lines
4: It hides all the wiring & crap that will end up behind the SBLive front drive bay.

IMG_0023.jpg



Top plastic is next. This is one part of the project I was not looking forward to & despite the boredom of drilling 2mm holes side by side & then snipping a hunk out of the middle of it, the filing of the plastic proved quite easy with adequate support to the flimsy fins now exposed to the rear of the panel.

IMG_0025.jpg



IMG_0026.jpg



Here`s the case ready to have everything chucked in. Notice the hole on the motherboard tray with the plastic trim; - Thinking ahead here.....SLI Power connectors for the graphic cards! :wink:

IMG_0027.jpg



At the rear, the two holes on the back panel were already in the case. We shall be using the left for the passive Radiator return to the Reservoir. You can also see the SLI water Exit in the mesh area of the rear panel down to the right. This is where the water will exit to the Passive Radiator, still yet to mount on the side panel.

IMG_0045.jpg



Talking of which, here`s the big mark out. Lots of consideration here as there is a hard metal frame which fits to both side panels. These frames form part of the latching mechanism to secure the side panels to the case. The release levers for the side panels can be seen on the previous pic to the sides of the two upper holes.

IMG_0047.jpg



The finished results:


IMG_0051.jpg


IMG_0062.jpg


IMG_0066.jpg


IMG_0071.jpg


IMG_0074.jpg






All we gotta do now for the Asthetics, is put a Window in the Side panel. Perspex is here, just waiting for a vacant slot in work. Then I can get the side panel on the Bridgeport & mill it`s ass clean off. The only windowed area will be between the Side panel horizontal locking bar & bottom edge & only as far forward as the back of the 5.25" drive bay plate. This will leave the pump in view! :mrgreen:

Anyways, the darker side of all this means Spunkster had to go & buy a New PSU. That Enermax just didn`t have the balls, or the Watts for that matter. As most folk spending this kind of money want the Max, we volt modded the SLI'd 9600GT's on the way. Slight slip of the silver conductive paint & we got these cards upto 900Mhz from 700Mz. When these cards were stock, 800 was possible with Idle temps of 25 DegC & load temps of ~ 50-60 Deg C. Since increasing the Volts to 1.38v & putting them under water, Idle temps are now 30 DegC (ambient) with Max load returning a mere 40 Deg C. As a bonus, there isn`t a couple of howling banshees in ur rig whipping up a major wind storm & the 900Mhz speed on the GPU Cores throws back some very very impressive numbers. However, whilst watching all this unfold live so to speak, we had to back off the CPU from 4.3Ghz. Not enough juice was available from the revived Enermax 600. I reckon those 2 volt modded SLI'd 9600GT's are asking for around 400+ Watts alone. CPU at that speed is getting on 200...oops.....tilt!!

Meantime I since I handed it over, Spunkster has been & got serious some more. On my aproval, he bought a PC P&C (Now OCZ owned) 1KW Quad SLI PSU. I haven`t seen the rig since & this weekend got in the way of us getting together. It appears as though 4.3Ghz on the CPU & 900Mhz on the GPU's is doable. I`m sure with a bios update & some more fine tuning, more can be achieved.

Ideally, we`d like to improve things further still. One massive improvement would be to fit a full half inch delivery pipe along the top & bottom of the passive radiator. This will help water flow considerably, though a tripple Active Rad would offer better cooling. We have also discussed making the fans on the top of the case blow in & fit another 120mm fan to the rear panel to help exhaust. This option is still under discussion as there is the matter of cat hair blocking the radiator for sucking in.

Back at my ranch, no wild furry pussy here! :mrgreen:

Bleeding the Air from the system was very time consuming. 7 Hours solid first time. Change of CPU water block made another 12 hours bleed time. Water flowed so much better, I was chasing bubbles round the system alot longer. As time goes by, small bubbles will collect in the Resevoir, though at the time of handing over, none were evident. By lifting the whole rig with the rear panel upermost, it`s a simple case of floating these tiny bubbles until they "bloop" up the pipe coming from the Passive Res. Then, placing the rig upright, reducing the pump to its slowest setting & flicking the pump on & off, we can control these bubbles to float into the `T` & top up as necessary. Lock the filler plug & it`s ready to go. Once all the Air is evacuated, it`s important to keep the pipe from the `T` as full as possible, otherwise it`s air back in the Res again. Changing the CPU block from EK to the D-Tek V2 was awesome. On the EK block & with the pump as slow as it would go, bubbles in the pipes were actually traveling backwards against the water flow if they could. Bubbles always rise! - Once the V2 was on, it was clearly evident the bubbles would always move with the flow of water. With the crap EK in place, I could alter the speed of the pump & make bubbles hovver. This is why the bleed time took 12 hours second time round. I didn`t have the same control of the flow using the V2. This change alone made a massive difference to the overall performance of this rig & these other options should enhance it further still.

All in all, it turned out well. I now have muscles on muscles. Jon & his wife arrived to pick it up last Saturday teatime to catch me in just Jeans with his rig above my head in the air. I`d had Glycol coolant down my armpits inside my t-shirt & was gettin sore from the friction of jostling & humping. Rough guess on the weight is around 40KG.

Having done a similar thing for myself back a while now (still got it) Jon didn`t realise the can of worms involved in such a project. Worse thing for me was, this wasn`t my kit I was hacking around, so even greater care was needed.
I thank him for his patience & his wonderful friendship knowing he absolutely fookin Loves it! 8)

Watchya think Keith? Does it make ya hard? :mrgreen:
 
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Zetr0

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Re: Building a Water Cooled Rig for my Best m8, "TheSpunkster"

LMFAO!!!!

it makes the missues hard too!!!!!! :LOL:

my friend, that is an exceptional bit of kit!!!!

my wife says if you build her one she love you long time.... :roll: :wink:

typical wifie's!!!!

I am pleased with the level of effort and work in this my friend, the pictures are jaw-dropping, which by irony the Rig you have there is!

okay.... printing pics off now..... i may not be able to respond for some time :D

il_430xN.6462121.jpg
 

Kin Hell

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Re: Building a Water Cooled Rig for my Best m8, "TheSpunkster"

PMSL!! & thanks bud! :mrgreen: - I`m just pleased Jon is as tickled with it as he is. He`s somewhat gob-smacked! :)

My only bitch about it was it wasn`t an all Aluminium Case. Needless to say, his hard drives are now a staggering 27Deg C instead of 50! :shock:
 

Harrison

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Re: Building a Water Cooled Rig for my Best m8, "TheSpunkster"

Very nice. The end result definitely shows off all of the hard work you put into it. Great work.

Sadly in a year's time a standard £250 PC from PC World will probably blow it out of the water (pun intended), but that is the progress of technology for you, and for the moment it is very nice.
 

Kin Hell

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Re: Building a Water Cooled Rig for my Best m8, "TheSpunkster"

Not quite Harrison & for several reasons.
First, you could never buy a Pee Cee from PC World like this. Even their standard built/Spec High End puters wont even come close in performance & you won`t ever buy kit of this spec for a mere £250 @ PC World, even in 2 years time.
Adding to this, the graphics cards are already blown away with the advent of the nVidia GTX260/280 Series. A GTX280 is almost as fast as a 9000GX2 @ 1600 x 1200 & above this Resolution, the GTX280 starts to beat the 9800GX2. :shock:

Whilst some of the hardware is out of date almost immediately, the case & Water cooling can be re-applied to newer technologies as & when they are released. Worse case scenario is replacing the CPU & Northbridge blocks, but the graphics H2O solution is a natural write off against progress & something you have to consider, accept & appreciate when you enter into this type of computing.

The real big gain here is silence, along with cooler running & bigger overclocks. It`s something you have to hear & see to appreciate, or in the case of Spunksters & mine, you have to keep asking yourself, "Is the bloody thing actually on!? - Shit yes....i`m looking at the screen."
I have 6 x 120mm fans on my Rig. When ur forking out £15.99 a fan for silence, that's what you get while maintaining Air-Flow.

Silence is golden! :mrgreen:

There will be some further posts soon showing System Clocks & Benchmark results. Stay tuned! :D
 

Harrison

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Re: Building a Water Cooled Rig for my Best m8, "TheSpunkster"

:LOL: Was a joke mate.

But in truth I bet in your heart you know what I was pointing at is true. Whatever you spend on a PC today will be overshadowed in just a couple of months and make your investment seem suddenly dated. It is how the computer industry, and especially the PC gaming industry, has always been, and will always be. If we wanted to have a more secure hardware platform we would opt for a console as you know the fixed hardware will have a lifetime of at least 5 years. With a PC, the games released in two years time will struggle to run at high settings on a current top spec system. We all know this to be a fact, but as we all enjoy building something that can run current games at nice settings we get the enjoyment and fun, and we get it now. And that is what it is all about. And then when the time comes that you need to upgrade again to run the latest games we then get the enjoyment of building another system from scratch. It's an expensive hobby that we will never get a return on our initial investment, but that isn't why we do it. We do it because we enjoy it and that is all that matters.
 

Kin Hell

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Re: Building a Water Cooled Rig for my Best m8, "TheSpunkster"

When you have 40Kg+ of compuer in the Air over your head on & off for 12 hours solid dude, it`s far from being a joke!

Thing is Harrison, we all know Computers loose money & depreciate faster than cars based on % Value. When you start throwing money at kit like this, the loss is infinately greater, but when ur in this game for speed with Silence, the losses become consequential. Alot of folk opt for crap tubing like Masterkleer. It`s a much thinner wall section with only a 7/16" bore instead of 1/2". It doesn`t bend as nicely & will collapse if bent too tightly.

It` all adds up, but if you want the best, you have to pay for it. You only ever get what you pay for in life.

I wouldn`t want to be doing projects like this all the time. Each one has it`s own nightmares & some cases lend to modification better than others, the ultimate being a MountainMods case, some costing more than £300.
For that though, you can mount 2 x 3 way 120mm Rads in the case, along with your DanFloss Compressor for those -50 Deg C experiences. The latencies on the system are greatly reduced for doing this. Again...something you have to see to be able to appreciate. :wink:
 
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Kin Hell

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Re: Building a Water Cooled Rig for my Best m8, "TheSpunkster"

We have an update due any day folks. It's been a while, but Spunky finally got bored of playing games @ jaw dropping FPS with all the Candy @ Mental Screen Sizes. He's now massing some Benchmarks of his new Toy. 8)
 

pkillo

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Re: Building a Water Cooled Rig for my Best m8, "TheSpunkster"

Sweet project, man... I built a water cooled system out of one of the very first AMD Athlon 64 chips... water cooling was - how shall I put this - not a well-developed craft at the time. I used to get woken up every other week by the shriek of the pump's alarm when air bubbles would appear in the lines, and the procedure for getting them out was mind-numbing. I had to insert the tip of a pencil into a tiny, tiny little hole on the front of the pump to open the release valve while gently bending the tubing leading from the CPU block to the pump over, and over, and over again to move the air bubble towards the pump! Needless to say, I got tired of this and put a cpu fan in after a few months. :) For the life of me I can't remember the name of the pump but it was JUNK...
 

DaZZaBoY

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Re: Building a Water Cooled Rig for my Best m8, "TheSpunkster"

@KH: *cough, this project would have been well placed in a hardware section of a forum not too far from here. :? May aswell leave it til the new place now anyway. ;)
 
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