AMD Case Mod

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mnpctech
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Waz up everybody?!

This is Mnpctech's project slated for AMD's display at ceBIT show in Hannover, Germany. 3/4/2008 - 3/9/2008. The case is a Thermaltake SwordM. I wanted to make something that reminded you of a space ship hull door. Reinforced Triangular Patterns with a rotary "airlock" latch. The shell I designed was milled from 1/2" aircraft aluminum on a 2 axis cnc mill. Everything is being chrome plated. I just posted a video segment of it's current progression on YouTube. Your comments are welcome!

Awesome Case Mods!
mnpctech.com

mnpctech
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Thanks dudes! it's been a pleasure to transform a seriously fugly factory case.

I've done a lot of aluminum polishing with an electric buffer and by hand. Until you've done your own polishing, I can only describe it as extremely tedious work. It numbs your brain, but not in a good way. Theres only a few Modders like myself that have been crazy enough to polish their own aluminum parts, sethnmalice and Paul from coolercases.co.uk. It takes a lot of patience! Last year I polished the 26" tall machined 6061 aircraft aluminum side panels and motherboard tray on this tower by hand. It took me 2.5 weeks of work, on/off otherwise the task drove me out of my mind. If you don't have the proper buffing equip, you can wetsand out any imperfections first before buffing out the finish. I don't have all the pro equip, so the problem with 6061 alum, is it can scratch real easy. Any speck of dirt caught under a sanding block will create havoc in the finish, just like wetsanding a paint finish. Of course, this did happen a few times and you started over. I vowed I'd never do this again and seek a professsional next time I wanted this type of finish. "Project Phenom" presented this challenge again so I made some phone calls and found AAA Metal Finishing.

Yesterday I picked up the first pieces from AAA. On a saturday no less! Since Mnpctech manufacturers their own line of machined aluminum parts, I've always wanted to learn about chrome, copper, and bronze platting. AAA's owner, Raul gave my son and I a tour of the facility. The building is city block long! He showed us the steps involved in plating metal parts. I noticed one of Raul's clients was BigDog Motorcycles I recognized their logo on handlebars and frame brackets in different stages throughout the building. Before any part can be plated, it must first be Bead blasted and then polished, otherwise you will see any surface imperfections in the final chrome coating. Raul was kind enough to allow me to record some of the steps with my camera. I plan share this footage in the next video update for this project :)

The first parts to return are the new top panel and factory front bezel trim from the Thermaltake SwordM Case. The factory finish on the bezel was originally anodized silver.

robodude666
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Great work, like always! Awesome song choice for part #3! Worked very well together.

How have your hardware plans changed now that AMD Quad FX has been delayed? Will AMD ship you guys a sample Phenom 9950 chip? or will ya use the 9600BE?

Cheers,
-robodude666

Nodspy
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Amazing. cant wait to see the finished product.

[="Arial Black"]ALL HAIL BRITANNIA![/]..... orange-kun owns all

mnpctech
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Thanks for the comments everybody!

Photos from last painting session, House of Kolor's "Kosmic Krome" Paint.. It's freakin cool paint dudes, but not something a paint newbie should start out using. It's very fickle in how it's applied. No worries here tho, Brads behind the spray gun.

robodude666
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Thats very Kool!

Ehhh, I couldn't resist.

mnpctech
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Heres the latest update on the rear door progress. The theme behind the Project Phenom's rear door design is futuristic.. Perhaps some strange type of space exploration equipment. Not neccessarily from Earth.

superdoughboy4
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Wow. You guys are doing a great job on it.
yalolol = me by the way. Lol

Too bad there's no "bump mapping" in real life... Lol
That way, you could make the text either stand out or look indented.
But doing that through visual expertise, that you guys show, works pretty well.

mnpctech
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Thank you! I appreciate the comments and feedback :thumb

Picking up the panels from the plater today.. I will keep ya'll updated on how they turned out.. of course!

I'll be mounting Round Modders Mesh on the back side of the openings in the milled side panel doors.

The small steel plates were spot welded onto the mesh, these will serve as AMD badges.

These triangular pieces were spot welded together. They mount inside the large side vents

mnpctech
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cvasquez;642194 wrote:
Would also add that it would be ridiculus watching a video on how you build this. NICE!!! :Holy Crap

So many hour tho.. People would fall alseep...lol!

Ok, heres the first of many doses of chrome goodness as I go through my progress photos from yesterday...

This is the mock airfoil/heatsink piece for the top panel.

The AMD 120mm 3/16" thick plated aircraft aluminum fan grills

superdoughboy4
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Wow. Those fan grills look great.

mnpctech
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Thanks for the comments dudes!

I wayyy underestimated the time that would be involved in the assemble of the case yesterday. Started late at 4pm and had to call it quits at midnight.. I forgot that all of thread holes in the chrome plated parts had to be re-taped. That along with missing odd-ball screws (4/40 x 1/2") among others, were misplaced or lost. Spent an hour at the local hardware store searching for fasteners.. In any case, heres some of the Bling that awaits assembly

What you're looking at in these pics, flawless chrome plating on the corner of AGP Vent, The left side access panel pieced together temporarily... Note, like the top panel in my last update, the recessed portions of the panel will offset with matte black vinyl. We didn't have time to paint, so the next best solution was matte black vinyl..The mesh will be painted Matte Black, to help offset the chrome, add depth to the reinforced features. Even with all of the Black bakground, this will be the most "Blinged-Out" computer evar.

Below, you're looking at the assembly of the left AGP vent, 120mm Aerocool fan sandwiched inside, but this fan will ultimately be replaced with Zalman w/ green leds I'm still waiting to arrive..

superdoughboy4
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Hahah. Wow. Talk about chrome dome.
Well... chrome box in this case.
Your guys' concept looked amazing when I first saw it.
Now that I see you guys doing it and doing it pretty much exact, this is awesome!

I thought the Sword M looked great when you guys first got it from TT.
After seeing Rodney's review, I realized it looks ugly to me.
But you guys are doing a complete facelift.

superdoughboy4
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I just realized Bill said that the Aercool will be replaced by a Zalman?
When did they start making conventional case fans?

mnpctech
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Thanks for the awesome response dudes!

Zalman makes kick ass fans dudes.. seriously. They're very quiet.

The chrome plating alone was just over $900, + several hundred hours of milling and fabrication.. + custom paint.. So, you can imagine the cost to have one made.

Yesterday I spent most of my time sleeving cables/wires with Black sleeving. Tedious work, but I hate messy cabling. I hope whatever PSU arrives is pre-sleeved from the factory. I can't afford the time to perform more sleeving. I also had to make fan wire extensions for 2, exhaust fans in the rear door and
side air intakes. I re-installed the SwordM's pwr/reset which are electroplated chrome plastic and the chrome plated Zalman ZM-MFC1 fan controller beneath the case front I/O panel. Perfect match of switchs. It's gorgeous. I'll take a photo today and post it soon.

The top panel is finished.

Round Modders Mesh Ready for Matte Black Paint

Mounting one of the panel

superdoughboy4
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Geez. This finished project cases net worth would be well over a grand.

And holy crap on the top panel. I would've never thought so much chrome could look so nice.

And I checked Zalman's site. Pretty nice fans.
I never even realized Newegg sold those.

Lol Another good reason to be Korean. Zalman's building is in Seoul. Hahah

Derfla
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omg I just started reading this thread and I must agree the metalwork is out of this world, the airlock thing is sooo cool!!
hehe you guys are funny figuring the case out in the first vid - all spaceships gotta have watercooling awww cmon!
and all them screws must be annoying, damn I want that 7" touchscreen monitor
the zalman fan controller looks kickass why don't they make them all like that in the future lol
btw I'm really glad you're modding the SwordM, man this case must have one of the worst looks per $

Derfla's RiG
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superdoughboy4
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If they work on it every single day and hour, they should be able to do it.

mnpctech
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yep, you nailed it... working every single hour. the assembly of the case took just over 20 hours. once AMD approves everything, I'll post the final assembly.. they already wanted the badges changed from Phenom FX to Phenom

Machined and Chrome plated "AMD logo" Side Rotary access panel handle

As I mentioned earlier, I wanted you to see the chrome plated bezel I/O port and zalman aluminum face plate up close.

superdoughboy4
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Geez. 20 hours to put it together.
Too bad you need approval from AMD.

nilzxx
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cvasquez;642567 wrote:
Damm...you watching this RACE?
Look at that shining mirror finish.
I can shave looking at this thing...lol.

Who needs shaving when you have such a sweeet computer? :hyper

Man, that is one intense looking case. Keep up the good work! :Thumb

--complete specs-- Intel Quad Q6700 | Tt TMG i2 | 4GB Crucial Balistix Tracer PC6400 | 1TB Seagate Barracuda | 500GB Seagate Barracuda | XFX GeForce 9800GTX | Asus P5N-D | XION 600W PSU | DVD-RW 16x | DVD 16x | SABRENT TV Tuner | Saitek Cyborg Mouse 3200dpi | Cyba Snipa LED Mousepad | Logitech G15 Gaming keyboard | Aspire Blue X-Dreamer Case | VisionQuest 2ms 22" 19:10 LCD screen (1680x1050) | Logitech Z-5500 Surround Sound

nilzxx
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mnpctech
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Sorry for the long interlude since my last update.

My wife's family is in the middle of a crysis that started Tuesday. I've been comforting her through this, so getting online wasn't a priority over the last few days.

I emailed my AMD contact this morning to see if it's not too late to ship this over to CeBit on Monday. I have no idea if he reads his company email on the weekends. It would miss CeBit's opening days, but maybe make it time for the peek weekend crowd.

I haven't had a chance to take decent pics. Bare with me through this situation, it will be worth the wait!

btw; Phenom 9900 kicks serious ass!

robodude666
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No worries. Family is more important. Hope everything turns out well.

Oh, consider taking a break from video games. The word you were looking for was "crisis" ;) Crysis is a game made by EA and Crytek =P

mnpctech
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Thank you everybody!

The case is finished! My goal was to present something original with a Sci-Fi theme that oozed hi-tech. I also wanted a hint of something Biomechanical without the gore element.

The swordM's best asset is that you can't always distinguish the front from the back. You find yourself walking around it to study everything.

My favorite angle.. subtle biomechanical cues in the rear door

AMD Phenom 9900, 2.6 GHz
2x 3870 HD Radeons

efernandez_98
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Excellent mod! Looks like you spent a lot of time on it.

my only qualm is...

mnpctech;645982 wrote:

It looks like its a pervert robot trying flashing to me. :noway

:rofl2

superdoughboy4
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OooOooOOHOHHH MAN!
That is SEX! [Yes, no Y. LOL]

nilzxx
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No, superdougghboy4. That computer is BETTER THAN SEX! That is by far the best case I've seen this year. Those are some INTENSE side panels. Can't say how much I love it. I probably would have preferred a a silver front bezel for the bluray drive though. The black kinda stands out.

superdoughboy4
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Hahah. Didn't realize that.
But the other only problem I have is the blue LED fans.
Moves away from the gg AMD theme!

robodude666
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Very nice case! Its shiny *_*

mnpctech;645982 wrote:
The swordM's best asset is that you can't always distinguish the front from the back. You find yourself walking around it to study everything.

Isn't the back the part with the cables coming out? =P

mnpctech
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Hey guys, I think removing it from the shop provided a much better backdrop