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Clean Slate


Jeffrey Stephenson

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Hi. My name is Jeffrey Stephenson. I have been a member of these forums since 2004. I design and build custom computers as a hobby in my retirement. This my 7th Cooler Master mod contest placing a first (2009) and a third (2011).

 

This build forgoes the single monolithic design of a modern computer case. Instead, each major air-cooled PC component has its own cover. The birds-eye maple plinth encloses the motherboard, storage drive and wiring. The slate gray painted covers are ventilated with architectural stainless steel mesh. The PC components are all small form factor mid-range gaming parts.

 

 

Submitted photos:

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Project Worklog:
003.jpg
Taped together a dozen or so 3 x 5 index cards so that they form around the shapes. 


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Transferred the template to 1/8" 7-ply birch plywood. These openings were cut out with a razor knife and wood file.



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Motherboard mounted to the underside of the plywood with components sticking up through the top.

 


 

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029.jpg
Trimmed the case top to size and prepared it for veneering.


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Motherboard mounting stud with nylon spacer.


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Screwhead of stud on reverse is leveled with wood filler.


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Prepare the clamping boards.


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Two pieces of veneer are taped together using special veneering tape. This tape is water activated. When it drys the tape shrinks drawing the two veneer edges together tightly. 


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Clamping or as I call it "bringing the pain".

 

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Trimmed out the "holes" in the veneer and added a back to the I/O cover.


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Added several courses of wood criss-crossing the ends like Lincoln Logs (ask your grandfather). Doing this creates the sides of the case.


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The last course is a half course creating a ledge all around the perimeter. The bottom panel of the case will sit down into this.


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Fit the motherboard to check clearances. The CPU cooler support bracket is temporarily taped into place. The bracket is the lowest point so the sides had to be built up enough to clear it. I want to keep this part of the case as slim as possible.

 

 

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