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Thread: project: Butterfly Sassy work in progress

  1. #1

    project: Butterfly Sassy work in progress

    Butterfly Sassy

    My wife is the inspiration for this project. I said I was never gonna do two projects at once, but I lied. I am currently working on a mod for myself as well, but Sassy is further along. So I'm going to start this project log first and see how it goes.

    The case I decided on for this project was an NZXT Apollo. I wanted to have an organic look and gentle curves instead of a big box. The theme is butterfly inspired, and my wife's favorite color is periwinkle blue. I think the color is adequate that I found with Krylon, so that is what I'll be primarily working with.

    This is the case as it came in. Overall its ok, and I specialize in budget cases! This one was $60 shipped, but its a couple of years old. The cable management is pretty non existent, and it has a top mounted PSU. So i'll have to make the cables look dazzling! Really it seemed the best for what I envisioned, I really wish more case makers went with some non-traditional designs. Well, I always have more ideas than I have time and money for, but I have some ground up case design ideas that I'll be working on in the future.

  2. #2

    project: Butterfly Sassy work in progress

    So my wife loves Butterflies. She loves periwinkle. After I finished my mod for my neice called "Smokey", she said she wouldn't mind if I did something similar for her. As far as I know, this is well kept secret so she will be surprised. I was hoping to have this project finished in time for Christmas, but we have fallen on hard times a bit and funding is an issue. So I continue with the most tedious part, painting and sanding.

    Some parts of the front bezel:

    I've changed my approach to rattle can technique. I've begun wetsanding between coats which ultimately will make for a superior finish, but it is tedious. Colorado weather doesn't help, its difficult to paint in cold weather and my workshop is only heated by a small space heater. So when the weather is good, its about 2 hours of wetsanding then 2 hours of painting. I have to allow 24 hours for curing, sometimes more when its too cold out.

    I do 3 coats of primer, 6 coats of base and at least 3 of clear coat. That is at the very least 9 days, of course I am too busy most days to do this. Its not often I have 4 hours to dedicate to mods.

    This is the left side panel:

    I always view the right side panel as a blank canvas. Most people don't bother with it, focusing on the left side and internal stuff. I also like mods that use the peripherals and are complete in their surroundings. As such I have already given her a G110 keyboard and a Razer Death Adder mouse.

    Back to the Christams thing, I told her I was giving her a new office for Christmas. We are gonna pick out some colors and paint, and I'll put in some shelving and whatnot. The big surprise is coming, but its gonna be a complete package.

    Right side panel is under way, here's some primer shots:

    Those high spots are always a problem! Also I found some rustoleum primer that came in these huge cans I thought it was such a sweet deal at the time. Unfortunately it comes out really grainy and requires extra sanding...

    Remind me not to skimp on painting supplies again!

  3. #3

    project: Butterfly Sassy work in progress

    More painting stuff. It will be a week or so until I have the funds for some other design stuff. I'm going to be etching a butterfly into the plexi, I just realized the junk that came with the case will not do. So its a custom job again.

    The right side I mentioned before is gonna be a new technique for me, I'll be stenciling a logo in the side which will be in script. I'm not sure how that all is gonna work just yet, but I'm excited and a little scared.

    Pretty colors

    Backside of the chassis:

    And other views:

    I just did a basic paint job on the interior, since the focus will be on the window etching. So i started adding the hardware back in.

    Looks pretty sharp! Other than the periwinkle primary color, I want to use black and white as accents. This will be very apparent with my choice of sleeving which should be arriving tomorrow.

    Top panel is almost done with the base coat.

    Pushed in the front bezel to see how its coming along:

    A the bottome of the front bezel there was this really cheap @$$ looking chrome plastic stuff that I threw in the garbage. I still haven't decided what I'll doing with that area. I was hoping to put in a honeycomb fan grill, but I'll have to see when I get there.

    Well, thats all for now. Hopefully I'll have some time to do some sleeving this week, in addition to the constant sanding and painting..

  4. #4

    project: Butterfly Sassy work in progress

    If for nothing else, I'm watching this build just for the name alone. Let's see what you can do.

  5. #5

    project: Butterfly Sassy work in progress

    Thanks. I like to think I have original ideas, but we shall see.
    The other mod is the one that will garner the most attention, but I've done two previous mods that I didn't really document well. So I'm learning to do the worklogs as well as new techniques. So thanks for watching!

  6. #6

    project: Butterfly Sassy work in progress

    Ok, I got my sleeving stuff in.

    Its Paracord! The color I've chosen for this mod is called misty mountain or something. No, blue mountain. Anyway, it just came in yesterday so I worked with it for a few hours. It is very slow going but much like most things it is worth the effort.

    Jasmine decides to help with the paracord.

    Its so nice to have a helper. Unfortunately she thought it was a snake, so I had to remove her from the workshop.

    Paracord for the uninitiated is a 1/8 inch cord that paratroopers used during WWII for their parachutes. It is rated at 500Lbs test, so it is more dense than regular sleeving materials. It is more fabric like than plastic. It comes in a great variety of colors, and is cheaper by the foot than sleeving. Unlike sleeving, it does not expand. So it very tedious and takes a lot more time and effort to sleeve with.

    I heard about this through The guy demonstrating said you couldn't sleeve USB cables with it. I set out to prove him wrong.

    Unfortunately I found out by tearing the cable apart that USB includes a wire sheath inside, part of the ground and for shielding I believe. So I managed to sleeve with paracord, but I probably ruined the cable in the process!!

    I guess dude was right..

  7. #7

    project: Butterfly Sassy work in progress

    So the paracord as I mentioned is more dense, it is also very colorful and bright. It is a PITA to work with, but the benefits are very observable. Here I'm showing how it looks compared to regular sleeving.

    Last night I sleeved a fan with paracord after taking off the safety stripe sleeving.

    One thing I've discovered is you have to cut the paracord a bit long as it tends to shrink in length as you sleeve. This is after I have stretched it out after inserting the cable.

    The fan is a Xigmatek crystal series 200mm with a 3 pin header connector. You need to remove the pins and then cover them so they don't snag. I just melted a piece of heatshrink over the pins to pull them through. For the 1/8 inch paracord, it seems 3 pins is the most it will allow to pass through.

    Here you'll see the dramatic difference between sleeving and paracord. This is not cheapo sleeving either, it is techflex safety stripe, the example here is 1/4 inch. The paracord is on the left, techflex on the right.

    So it is significantly more colorful and just higher quality all around. The major shortcoming is the inability to sleeve the entire system with it because of the 1/8 inch limitation. It will work with the 24 pin and 4/8pin ATX single sleeve application and SS molex as well. I also heard that Sata won't work either, but I suppose I'll have to ruin another cable to find out for myself.
    Oh, and 6/8 pin PCI express power should also single sleeve nicely!

  8. #8

    project: Butterfly Sassy work in progress

    So I spent several hours working with the stuff last night. I sleeved the front panel headers which came out halfway decent.

    My endwork needs some polish. Trying some new techniques that aren't perfect yet. I am finding zip ties and paracord don't go well together..

    Also did some wetsanding on the front baezel pieces. I think they are actually ready, I'll wait a bit for the paint to cure then I'll start on the polishing. I think they looks pretty good for plastic, yo.

    The orange peel will buff out. I think I did even a bit more sanding after those pix. I took it to 2500 grit after I figured they had enough clear coat. 2 weeks is what I usually do for cure time, but I need to move more quickly than that.

    Now its time to semi-assemble and take a look to see if its coming along well or if I need to reassess some things.

    Well, I am pretty satisfied so far. The black elements really seem to compliment the periwinkle. Of course I want the build to be a work of beauty for my beautiful wife, but I want it to be a little badass too.

    I have been contemplating a lot on pinstriping lately, but I think my stubby ape fingers are not quite ready for freehand. So i will cheat, but I won't feel bad about it.

    Its 25 and we have 6 inches of snow, so I won't be getting any work done today. But the sleeving should keep me busy for two weeks anyway. It is gonna be sweet but golly gee whiz beav. Its gonna take me at least two days to sleeve an entire power supply!

  9. #9

    project: Butterfly Sassy work in progress

    I have got to do something about the cable management. I've got to get a set of hole saws on the cheap. Not sure my drill is up to the task though..

  10. #10

    project: Butterfly Sassy work in progress

    Hey Buzznut good work there. In lieu of your inabilty to pinstripe (same problem here lol) just go to an auto parts store and get the pre-made pinstriping, which you may have already thought of? It workes great and is pretty easy to apply. Just make sure to use a little alcohol on the contact surface prior to applying it and give it at least 24 hours to let the adhesive cure on it's own.
    Works like a charm and will save you hours of cursing.

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