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Rehab - Fractal R4 casemod [completed]

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On 10/28/2016 at 7:25 AM, ToddK said:

AHHHHH!  You pulled apart the Avexir's.  You're a braver man than I am - LOL!  :laugh:

I figured there had to be a way to avoid taping everything up so I just started prying at things.  Came apart pretty easy.

On 10/30/2016 at 7:51 PM, Seananigans said:

This is Looking awesome! I love your color choices ....and that chrome! Definitely a slick design!


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23 hours ago, Jebidiah_Crumps said:

This case is looking amazing and really it the nail on the head for the old hot rod look I cant wait to see the finished project!

Thanks!  Wait till you see it with the skins on, screams old hot rod.

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So I've started piecing things together and got the painted RAM, GPU, and pump put in.


Getting everything in place let me get most of my cabling done.  Just need some combs which are on the way.


For tubing I decided to go with 1/2" OD stainless steel.  This is .035" wall T-304 seamless tubing.


I ordered 8' thinking that would be enough, but I didn't count on fighting my bender so much.  4' later, I've got one bend, but it's a nice one.


I ordered more tube, but now that I've got the bender figured out, the rest should go quick.  

While waiting on tubing, fans, and the X-Carve to knock out the start of my front panel, I went ahead and finished up my skins.  After the flames came 3 coats of clear, then a sanding to level things out, then 3 more coats of clear and sanding to get it all smooth.  Finished of with a good buffing and polishing after hitting it with 1500 and 3000 grit paper and I wound up with this.




It sucks that my camera has a hard time picking up the colors in bright light.  But in some of the shots you can pick up  the fade from the yellow to the orange.  

For the top panel/hood, I ordered another hinge to replace the first one that had been epoxied on and cut it to size.  Then with some button head screws and acorn nuts, I put it together.  It came out perfect.  No screws would have made me happier, but this looks sharp and definitely isn't going anywhere.  Plus I didn't have to fight the hinge while painting or polishing.  



And a shout out to my sponsor again, MNPCTECH.  Bill sponsored the fittings, but I keep finding myself going back and buying feet, LEDs, and now billet cable combs.


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Getting down to crunch time.  Only 10 days left to finish and get pics done so let's get going!  With the skins done and that huge weight off my shoulders, I can focus on finishing the assembly and fabricating the grill.

To keep on with the assembly, I decided to knock out the off side, or what I'm considering the interior section of Rehab.  In a hot rod you might find a relocated battery or some other hardware stashed in the trunk.  But just because it's in the trunk doesn't mean it can't look cool or unfinished.  

Like this.


That was the goal with the off side.  I'm not sure if all the snippets of work on that side made much sense, but now it's time to tie it all together.

I've already got the SSDs mounted to my suede covered panel, so all that was left was to mount the extinguisher mounts and put it and it's edge trim in.  


It does need a bit of a haircut.  The backing on the suede kind of fluffed on me.

Then I mounted up the PSU and tried to wrangle the wires in.  I've got an inch of room behind the panel which is great for extra wire, but with no way to really access it, I had to shove the wires blindly and hope they went where I wanted them to go.  There's a bit of work left to get them exactly how I want, but this is a good start.


Bad thing about the PSU, I had it sitting on a towel after getting it all back together and it picked up the texture, so I'll be painting it again.  Guess 2 days of curing wasn't enough.


With the side panel on giving a nice shot of the hardware inside.


It's gonna be really tight on airflow to the PSU after the window is in, but I think it'll be able to draw enough air.  With a thin piece of acrylic, it should still have 1/4 inch of clearance.  Might wind up cutting a vent in the window down the road though.  Just have to see.


And now my big concern on finishing...the grill.  I went back and forth trying to think of different ways of pulling it off.  Do I make something?  Do I adapt something to fit?  Do I figure out a way to make the original front panel work?  It was a tough call because I really wanted it to have the look of a billet slat grill, but I didn't want to have to drop a couple hundred dollars on a grill insert and then try to make it fit.  I finally came up with an idea to make it from scratch that I think will look dead on.  Or at least I hope.

First off, I cut 2 sections of 3/4" MDF for my frame, one with notches, one without.


Then a little glue and some clamps.


I sent that through the table saw to get an angle on the side.  At first I was looking for a way to rout the edges since I've got a round corner, but I just couldn't come up with any way that would work that I liked.  I spent way more time just trying to figure out a way to route it than it took to knock it out on the saw.  I got the corner's angle with a sander, just matching it up to the saw cuts.




From the side, it looks a bit like the original Fractal front.  Nice.  All that's left for the frame is a bit of cleaning up and some paint.

But what about the fins?  That's where the notches on the frame come in.  I CNC'd two brackets out of some 1/2" acrylic with 1/8" slots about halfway deep.


They slot right into the notches of the frame.


Next up are the 27 slats that I have to finish CNCing out of 1/8" acrylic that slot right into the brackets.  Then a bit of assembly and the whole thing will be ready to paint!


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Welp, I guess this is probably the last update before final pics, so let's get on with it.  

Finishing up the grill.  First off mounting the brackets with some M3 push in inserts.  


And then putting the 1/8" slats in and welding them in place with some Weld-On.


Assembly done, ready for paint.


And with a coat of black and Killer Chrome.


Next up, I finally got some fans.  I had thought to use some thin Prolimatechs, but wasn't feeling them so I went with the Corsair ML120 with blue LED's.  I must say, clicking the pay button kind of hurt.



If things look a little tight, well, it's because they are.


Doesn't seem to hurt the airflow though and man are they quiet even at a decent speed.

Now to start jumping around to random things since this is mostly buttoning up details.

Billet cable combs from MNPCTECH.



Aluminum covers for the drives to fit them into the hot rod theme.  And oh yeah, the fire extinguisher.  I went ahead and discharged it to save some weight.  Man that thing has some range!


Cover for the RD400 m.2 drive too!


Wrapping up the stainless cooling lines.


Then there was this bastard.


Nailed it on the second try.  Well, it does rub the GPU and pushes the back panel out a smidge but it's within mm's so I'll take it and probably just modify the GPU shroud a bit.


Then the window to show off the SSDs and PSU.  Decided it needed some flair so I CNC'd the Gigabyte 30th logo into a piece of 3/16" acrylic.


And then mixed up some urethane resin adding blue dye and some silver flake.


The worst part of this is that the flake is a larger flake and tends to settle out during the resin's open window so there's a little more flake flashing out the front side than I'd like.


God there's a lot of blue in this build.

Most of the assembly done, leak tested, and ready to turn on and check out the lighting.  You might notice a random white tube on the res along with a brass fitting.  Turns out my temp gauge won't work, the sensor was too big and there was no way to change it since it was based on some sort of liquid/gas expansion, which I found out after cutting the tubing to see if there was a way of swapping it.  So that white tubing is now leading to an oil pressure gauge.  I think it'll be useless since there shouldn't be a lot of pressure build up, but it still looks cool.



Ouch.  The blue in the gauges sucks.  Yellow LED on the board that I didn't know about. And where's the LED strip I installed and hooked to a fan header?  But the Avexir's...effing cool.


Ah, back to white(??) on the gauges and the on board LED can be shut off, but that doesn't really matter because the LED strip has to run 12v on fan headers with Gigabyte's bios so it drowns out everything.  I see that getting a resistor.  But all in all, I'm liking it.

Off side, same problem with the LED strip.  


And now let's throw the grill on for the final look.




Next up, finals.

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17 hours ago, Mosquito said:

I feel like the fire extinguisher was a missed opportunity for a reservoir lol  

Looks great man, look forward to final pics!


Thanks!  I think the extinguisher would have been trouble as a res.  The only realistic way I saw to use it was to hide a real res inside it and make it look like the extinguisher worked as a res.  I'm much happier about adapting the stainless catch can.  Using car parts on a hot rod build plus giving myself future, viable, not off the shelf options for a reservoir has got my mind spinning.

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Ok, final pic time.  Man, one of these days I need to upgrade the camera.















The last two aren't the best pics(one with awesome framing and bad cropping, the other off my phone, but I love the reflection on the hood) but I love the look of them.  




Thanks for following along and once again, a huge shout out to Bill at MNPCTECH for sponsoring those awesome fittings!




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On 11/11/2016 at 6:20 PM, Bill Owen said:

I'm also gonna share this in the Hangout this Sunday.... well done job, dude 


On 11/11/2016 at 6:28 PM, Seananigans said:

Beautiful! Very well done! 


On 11/12/2016 at 2:51 AM, WizualModz said:

Beautiful case! Well done! :)


On 11/13/2016 at 1:29 AM, vladtepes said:

Very nice !

Thanks all!

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Public voting is open for Gigabyte's Mod2Win contest!  You can vote for as many mods as you like, once a day, until December 19th and get entered for some Gigabyte swag too!  So yeah, everyday you can enter for swag!  Check it out!


Obviously I want you to vote for Rehab, but while you're there, check out The Duality which is also here in the forums.  He managed to shove 20 pounds of....stuff...in a 10 pound box.  Crazy!

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