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Cosmos Cruizer - Finally Complete!


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More stainless hard line goodness...

This time I decided to try filling the pipe with sand before bending, to see if that would help keep the tube more rounded in the curves.  It wasn't bad before, but it was noticeable.

Taped the ends off and laid it onto the heater for a couple minutes to warm it up.


45º bend came out nice, just like my test wire.

My test wire is actually just solder lol.  But it's perfect for finding the correct bends and transferring them to the pipe, because it's very soft and malleable, and holds its shape.

Here's all the pipe runs bent..

And here are some shots with the pipes in place..





Looking forward to seeing all these pipes in their finished, chrome state!  

Ok, back to the seemingly never-ending work on the back panel...

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  • 1 month later...

Slow progress is slow...

After looking at my pipe-bending handiwork, something didn't quite look right to me.  Took me a while to pin-point it, but I think I found the culprit.  It was the longest piece of stainless in the back.  So I decided to re-do it, to give the QDC's a bit more breathing room so-to-speak.  I didn't really like the vertical pipe's close proximity to the fittings, so I added a few slight bends to give them a bit wider berth.  This just looks better to me now.

Ok now that I can sleep nights once again, I have more back panel progress to show...

A new IO plate has been forged!  It all started in Sketchup, laying out all the ports plus power plug and PSU on/off switch.  Printed it out 1:1, and taped it to a piece of aluminum scrap.

Took the exacto knife to it and traced all the ports.

With the aluminum plate scored, I could start drilling holes and scrolling the ports.  First DVI port cut out.

All ports scrolled and filed.  Still have to round the edges & sand.

With all the ports cut out, I could transfer those areas to the back panel to be cut out as well.

IO plate in position, with ends bent to match the back panel.

Behind the scenes shot of fitting the extensions, adapters, & PSU parts.

I have to work up some sort of retaining piece to hold all the cables in place, so that they stay perfectly aligned with the IO plate cutouts.  Then I'll permanently affix them to the back panel.  Maybe a solid block of epoxy putty?

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Jumping back onto the lower back panel to finish off the PSU fan grill area.

I last left off with bending the 1/8" aluminum bars to match the hinged fillport door up top.  Here I cut out the portion of the panel that will be replaced with mesh.

Speaking of mesh, here it is, with curve to fit the rounded corner at the bottom of the panel.

Mesh fit into cutout area of panel.

And here are the alu bars with the ends bent to follow the lower curve.  I also made end caps to join the ends and complete the design.

I clamped them all together with the correct spacing and marked the underside for screw holes.

In between bouts of drilling/tapping 2-56 holes in the 1/8" alu bars, I made the bottom acrylic piece that will pick up the two PSU mounting screws.

Finally, with all the mounting screw holes done, I could fasten the bars down.

And with the lower end caps in place.  Still needs some adjustment here and there, and I will take care of that later.

Lastly, an overall shot of the back panel in its present state.  Inching dangerously close to being done methinks!

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Was a beautiful weekend, so I took this opportunity to take care of an issue I had with the fiberglass panel that's been bugging me ever since I switched motherboards.  I originally designed the panel to accommodate the EVGA X79 FTW, but when I exchanged that for the X79 Dark, the graphics cards did not line up with the cutout anymore.  Slot #1 is positioned differently, so now the first card interferes with the edge of the cutout.  And widening the cutout didn't solve the visual problem.

As you can see here, the card goes past the "shock tower" of the panel and just looks like a mistake.  It's been driving me nuts, so I gotta fix it!



This close-up shot shows that the HDMI ports are inaccessible.

Thanks to the forgiving nature of fiberglass, this is a relatively easy fix.  I cut out the corner of the shock tower on both sides...

Then cut 5/8" off the right side and put it over on the left to fill the gap, effectively moving the corner over and widening the towers.  I temporarily tape it all together from the back.

Then I tape it from the front and block it so the pieces stay flat.


Then I removed the back tape and proceeded to fill in the gaps with thickened resin.  After a few hours of curing, I removed the blocks and tape.

Everything is filled in for the most part, and level with the rest of the surface.  All I need to do now is apply a bit of bondo filler and sand smooth.

A slight set-back, but well worth the effort.  My OCD is once again back down to nominal levels.

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