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Project Alternate (Pc in a Desk)


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Project Alternate: PC in a desk scratch build & MODs
Hi all,
After what feels like a very long year I have decided to start work on my new desk build.
The idea for this desk came to me when i was working on my last desk & at one point I almost started the project 
again, but I'm glad i didn't
Most people liked the desk & I learned a great deal during the build.
The Project Alternate design slightly changed month by month & I will show some of the other plans & explain why the changes was made.
This time I'm hoping to outdo my last desk & hopefully help others in the process. 
The desk work is about to start, using mostly MDF, Perspex, clay, metal & glass I plan to build the desk in 3 parts,
starting from the bottom, then middle followed by the top section.
the tricky parts will be the sharp corners & angles on the edges.
In making the desk in 3 parts it will allow for easy transport from my garden shed to my 
very small room/office.
I plan to have the 2 reservoirs just under the top shelf so i can see the water flowing by :)
have a couple of different layouts for the internal components, 
but want to wait until the top compartment is built so I can see IRL what looks & works best.
For the specs, I'm upgrading from my trusty i5-2500k to a i7-5820K, due to the CPU upgread I will also be using the new ASUS X99 TUF
motherboard & DDR4
This time I will also go with 3 screens at 1440p if possible, or 1X 4K screen, so my HD7970s will also need upgrading to a R9-295x2.
The desk is going to take months to complete, so rushing out for parts now is not necessary unless it's something on sale I can't pass on :D
**UPDATE 18/10/15: some Specs**
CPU    - i7-5820k
MB     - ASUS Sabertooth X99
RAM    - 32GB Avexir Blitz 1.1 (DDR4) 
GPU    - ASUS R9-295x2
PSU    - Cooler Master: V1200 Platinum
PSU2   - Cooler Master: GM750W
Fans   - Cooler Master: Jet flow 120's & Cooler Master Silencio FP120 PWM 
HDs    - Western Digital Green 6TB - Barracudas x2 2TB - Wester Digital Green 1TB
SSDs   - 2x Samsung EVO850s 250GB (500GB)
RADS   - 2x Phobya G-Changer 360 RADs V.2
RES    - 2x Phobya 450 reservoirs
CPU WB - Alphacool NexXxoS XP³ Light
PUMP   - 2x Alphacool VPP655
GPU WB - Alphacool NexXxoS GPX
KB     - CM Storm quickfire xti
Mouse  - CM Storm Reaper
Build log 1
Build log 2
Build log 3

Desk top lift
The Final
Thanks to the sponsors.
Cooler Master UK, CM Storm, ASUS ROG, Phobya, OCOOL/Alphacool Mayhems GT Omega Racing & Avexir
aadCooler%20Master%20Logo%20-%20white_zp user97365_pic33097_1367599308_zpssgsc5ia aadrgb_300dpi_white_zpser9zkew0.jpg
aadCooler%20Master%20%20Storm%20Logo%20- aadOCOOL%20mod_zpszfiamuh5.jpg aadROG%20Logo-b_zps7m21qlnv.jpg
For past & present MODs/Builds please check my Facebook & Youtube pages. 
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here is one of the many 1st designs i did, had to change it due to the size :(




After the wife told me to move all my model cars from the living room, this cabinet ended up in the garden, I was planing to use the glass from this

on the next build & was one of the main reasons the desk is so angled, I also love the Honda CBR600RR due to its sharp looking design & ofc Lambos have the same sharp designs that i love,

now due to the design changes I cant use the glass so will be using fresh cut glass or thick perspex.



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Thanks for all the above comments :)


The MDF for the 2 bottom sections along with most of the MDF for the middle have now been cut to size & I have started to assemble.





I was told to kit myself out with a face-mask & glasses when cutting MDF,

but the normal size face-mask was causing my glasses to steam up lol

So had to dig out my airsoft mask to use in conjunction with the small face-mask





Some of the bolts/screws I will be using to fasten the main parts together, they will make it more easy to remove with standard alan keys & should last longer.










Sides ready to be fasten to the bottom & back, soon as the miter edges are done




The hardest part so far, miter edges, very tricky & most the time i have to use scrap wood before doing the final peace or risk wasting some MDF




My 1st set of angled corners cut ready to use as shelf's/frame




Bottom left assembled 




P.S, art added to 2nd post!

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A bit later than planed but finally got time now to update the log :)


Both bottom left & right shelf's/frames are completed, no permanent fittings just encase i have any problems moving the desk to the house,

This was by far the easiest part so far





The main compartment that will act as a frame for the top & hold the fans & other components - the RADs















Here im making some slots for the front panels that will be resting on the left & right side shelf's, doing so will help hold them im place as I screw them down 





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Over the past week some build items have arrived so I will cover them along with the case mod im doing

Moving the MEGA desk build (2013) in to the case to make room for the new desk & to ensure I have a working 

computer during the build so I can keep you all updated :)



My 1st package had some Cooler Master bit n bobs that I will cover later in the build

along with my replacement tea cup & cap :D









2nd package had the heart of the new build, A v1200 PSU along with Jet Flow 120mm RED fans & some

very nice Resonar in-ear buds so I can have some decent music as I'm working in the shed :)

























And last thing I received this week was my new CPU, Intel i7-5820k witch will be a nice upgrade for me

the last CPU I was using was the i5-2500k.




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Building from bottom to top, the sides are cut and attached with screws & glue, 

decided to use some old wood for this part to test out the new saw & my skills with mitering


In the end I was so happy with the results I kept the old wood & didn't bother redoing them with MDF :)








This bit was tricky, wood too deep for the dremel, design to narrow for the multi tool :(

Ended up having to use a bit of everything including a hand saw & blade.









Now time to cut the part that will allow my legs to go under the desk, then for the 1st time I can sit at the desk to get a feel for how it

will be when completed.










This is one of the drive bay holder cutouts, again with the older wood









The final update for this weekend is the start of the two shelf ends that will also act as speaker boxes 







Hope you enjoyed the updates, please let me know your thoughts as I progress, good or bad, still time to change things if needed :D


Have a nice weekend 


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Both the corner parts now built, they will house the speakers & also act as part of the upper shelf for the monitor/monitors.






After making the above parts I could then start to work on the tricky parts, the 2x side covers that need some careful cutting in order to look the part & take some pressure.

Used glue to hold the parts together then when it was dry I added some blocks for extra strength. 












When I was happy with all the parts & placement I then went back to the corner parts to add the speakers, did it in this order so i could double check how it looked 

before adding the speakers, just encase I wasn't happy with them in the position I had them on the art work.





This is a dodgy tool, almost had my hand of a couple of times, but did the job in the end :)





Added some sealant to prevent dust & help with the speaker sound.





















Starting to take shape now, really nice to see it looking a bit like the design I spent months working on :D


please note, the sides ain't fasten down yet & still need some sanding to be done later in the build, 

the shelf is also just resting there atm, the blocks holding it up are just for demonstration & will be replaced. 






In the next stage im going to dismantle the desk & reduce the height by 2 inch, the main reason for this mod is so im not towering 

above my friends on my high chair as they sit on the small visitor chairs :)

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