Hey Guys! - this is going to be my little diary of the 24 hour Casemod I built for the DCMM 2010 at the Gamescom in Cologne together with my mate Patrick.
To start with I want to just say that there arenâ€™t that many pictures of the building process, because we were more interested in finishing than documenting all of our steps. But I will upload all photos I can find. (A TV-crew from a popular TV-documentary series filmed the build process so there are some moving pictures at the end of the this little bit of text.)
Patrick and I chatted a lot about modding and other crap whilst we both took part in an online modding contest. We were talking about quick mods and he asked me if I had any ideas for a mod. I sent him some concepts and then Patrick asked me if I want to take part in the 24h livemodding competition at the DCMM with him.
Choosing the design was quite straight forward. Patrick really liked the first concept I showed him. I showed him the hardest first to impress him. Wellâ€¦ he liked it. I did some changes to make it a bit easier, but no way did he want to change it. So we would do it the hard way. I knew it would be really tough. But if I come to think about it, it was the right idea.
So we met up on my teamspeak-server and discussed the whole plan, went through every step and planned it all out. I then worked out the whole design with all the measurements needed for a Coolermaster Elite or Xigmatek Asguard, as I thought it would be very likely that we get a similar case.
Well two weeks to go the organisers told us we would be modding a Techsolo MO-09
That wasnâ€™t very good for us, as we had to adapt all the measurements to fit the new case. And we knew that the case would be a load of crap. Well in the days before the contest we went through all the steps again in our heads just to make sure that we didnâ€™t forget a single thing and then wrote some shopping lists and packing lists with what to take.
When all was bought and packed it was time to go.
Patrick took a nice picture of his car before he left towards Cologne.
We then both left from our homes to finally meet up in Cologne hoping that the other hadnâ€™t forgotten anything. (Tuesday evening)
Because we had never modded anything together before this case and as it was our first time doing a livemodding challenge our aim was to complete the damn thing. Nothing more. We knew that it was possible on paper, but would it be in real, under pressure? We were also told that a national TV-channel would be filming us so we knew that extra pressure would be on our shoulders. To add to that we were the only new boys on the block, as all the other teams had already taken part in the livemodding challenge before.
On arrival we had a bit of a â€žhotelâ€œ-shock.. well nevermind
Early in the morning we left the â€žhotelâ€œ for the Gamescom where we were awaited by the TV-crew.
Well we got all cabled up with microphones and stuff, then we could unpack all our stuff have a quick blab about the steps for the first day and before we knew it our countdown had started. 24 hours to go. Well 8 hours of modding for this day.
Whilst Patrick sawed up all the parts for the inner-case, I took part the Techsolo crap. Patrick did his job brilliantly and every piece was spot on. I cut myself on the stupid box. (On the cutout for the I/O panel â€“ which was as sharp as a knife). Only a small cut in my Thumb â€“ not to deep and didnâ€™t really hurt but boy did it bleed. I know the men with cameras on their shoulders really liked it and I could have bet any money on it showing up on the video. Sometime later the case was dismantled, the pop-rivets removed and a plaster stuck on my thumb. Everything still in plan.
Then we put the inner-case together with the help of some screws and glue. Then we modified some cupboard hinges so that we could use them for the case. After we had got it all aligned I started filing and sanding the inner-case for which Patrick then started cutting out the acrylic parts for. The bottom part of the inner-case had to be filed so that the acrylic parts fit perfectly. And all the other areas where the bottom and top of the case would meet had to be filed and prepared so that it all still works when the paint is on.
Patrick also drilled the big fan-hole in the front and I drilled all the holes for the cables. I then carried on filing the inner-case, whilst Patrick cut up some acrylic strips for down the sides. When he was finished we glued them onto the case.
Now we could glue the glue the acrylic parts to the bottom of the case.
We then finished the day with the most difficult step of the whole build process. The sides and the front. When I designed the case I the idea behind it was to make the front and sides out of a single piece of acrylic sheet. So whilst Patrick cut it out from a big sheet. I set up our bending platform. My idea was to bend the sheet over a heated strip of metal. To make every bend perfect we milled a V-shaped grove along the bending lines. Then we could bend the piece and it was went just perfectly. Just as planned. We then screwed and glued it to the case for it all to dry overnight.
Our first day went better than planned. We were absolutely on schedule, we had absolutely super build quality and the TV-Crew had not interfered as much as we had feared.
Patrick started the day by finishing off the acrylic base.
Whilst he was doing that I made the harddrive mount in the bottom of the case. When the base was completed I started sanding down all the edges, so that they had the same radius as the ones on the bend on the top. Whilst I was doing that Patrick cut out the acrylic pieces for the top and the diamond shape for the front. When he was done we glued the diamond shape to front with acryfix. Whilst that was hardening we cut out the V-shaped cutouts in the top bit.
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Then we taped up the UV-reactive green acrylic so that no paint could get at it, then we carefully glued it to the top.
Then we could start the second and last bit of bending for the case. The top part had to be bent twice and the bends hat to be perfect to the degree. It went really well and we had all the major parts finished. When that was done we glued the flexlights to the case and I routed the all the cables.
Now it was time to glue the top to the main part. We made a small mistake doing it so the strong filling glue mixed with the acryfix which should weld the acrylic pieces together. Well it then took ages drying. We needed a lot of UV-power which we couldnâ€™t get from the little cathodes, which usually easily do the job, so Patrick took the case outside so it could sunbathe.
The very strong stage lighting was causing us a lot of problems when it came to gluing. After the glue had dried we started filling and sanding all the little imperfections on the case. We had to scratch out some of the glue that had mixed on the seam, which hadnâ€™t hardened properly. Then we injected some new acryfix and when that had dried we finished the second day with filling and sanding.
The last day started the way the day before had finished â€“ to the dismay of the camera crew we spent another couple of hours filling and sanding.
The base was finished first. So whilst I carried on with the top Patrick primed and painted the base.
A little bit later it was the tops turn. So we could paint it better we quickly improvised and built a stand to put it on. I tried to reflect some of the intense light from the lighting onto the other side using some of the acrylic sheet. The lighting was giving us a real headache. It was extremely hard to get the paint on evenly in the light. But we managed to get it on really well in the end.
When the base had dried I then installed the Hardware. We let an AMD Athlon II X4 640, a MSI 785GM-E65 Mainboard, a Coolermaster Hyper TX3 and a Cougar SX700 PSU in. Plus another few little bits. A big THANK YOU to the companies which supported us!
While I was doing that Patrick made the power button. We used an old one from the button from the Techsolo case and modified it slightly by adding an acrylic sheet so that it was a stealth button which you canâ€™t see. Patrick glued a logo onto it which we printed out before we left and just had to cut it so that it fit.
When the top had had dried I then soldered the wires from the flexlights to a modular PSU cable, which I cut to length, then I braided all the cables and fitted the fan. Then I cleaned up the whole System and tied up the cables.
We were ready for the final assembly. We took our time, because we still had more than enough time on the clockâ€¦ we thought. When we were playing with the case we realized, that we had forgotten to add an extra hinge that prevents the case from opening to far.
Well as you can see in the Video it was a bloody close finish.
We succeeded in finishing in time, which was our aim for the competition. We didnâ€™t have to botch any single thing, which we were extremely proud of, as it isnâ€™t easy in 24 hours. The Case turned out just as good as I dreamed it to be - if not better.
Here is the Video:
CLICK HERE TO VIEW!!
I have added English subtitles. You have to press the caption button in the bottom right corner to activate them.
We want to thank everyone who supported us:
Thanks AMD for the Athlon II X4!
Thanks RenÃ© from Coolermaster for the CPU coolers!
Thanks Cougar for the SX700PSU!
Thanks MSI for the 785GM-E65 Mainboard!
Thanks Roccat for the Kova + Apuri!
And I want to personally thank a few more:
First of all a big thank you to Patrick for the great teamwork. A big thank you also goes to the other competitors for a great time!
Patrick then took some nice pictures of the case when he got home.
Here are the final pics:
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And some technical data:
CPU: AMD Athlon II X4 640
Mainboard: MSI AM785GM
CPU-Cooler: Coolermaster Hyper TX3
Power Supply: Cougar GX750
Case: Techsolo MO-09
Outer-case from 3mm cast acrylic
Size(w,l,h): 28 cm, 50 cm, 45 cm
On the Sunday we had a very pleasant surprise:
We were crowned â€žInternational German Casemod Champions in the 24h Live Modding Challengeâ€œ
We would like to thank the jury and the organizers for this honor! (and for the nice trophy)
Now i'm going to show you the pictures of the second build:
Today I just sanded down the case and filled a few areas und sanded them againâ€¦ (some again and again and again )
I also cut out that stupid mesh stuff in the back of case:
Well as you can see I didnâ€™t have many problems sanding down the bottom part. The top was a bit more difficult. So I had to come up with a stand. But I wasnâ€™t going to spend a single cent on something I will only need for one case:
Took like 2 minutes to make. 3 woodscrews, an old Ikea shelf bit, four rubbish plastic wheels so I can turn the whole thing whist sanding and painting and an old headrest from a bed.
It works. (Very well actually)
Whilst I was browsing the web I found something very very interesting. Check out for your selves:
I didnâ€™t know what to think at first and I was quite shocked, but that is probably the best compliment you can get if someone likes your work so much that he has to copy it.
Also found something on a Russian site by chance. Donâ€™t know what they wrote, because I donâ€™t do Russian, but itâ€™s very surprising how far the stuff spreads even without you knowing.
Okay.. well you probably donâ€™t care much, but the second case will get a different paintjob. Well I planned to do the paintjob which will be on the second case on the DCMM-Case. Well just before we left for cologne the company who wanted us to use their paints suddenly went quiet and then never sent us the promised paint. So we quickly had to get some colour, so we just bought some black.
Well now it should be interesting to see if the case turns out as good as the first, or maybe even better. At least now I can take my time painting it, as I donâ€™t have the clock running against me.
The top will be a greyish colour and the bottom will be black.
Now after the first coat it looks like this:
I really like it.
Now just have to wetsand it and add another couple of layers. Then electronics and assembly, then done.
Thanks for your interest if you are reading this! Hope you liked it a bit!
So long :0)