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Thread: Tony -Tazz's Worklog

  1. #41
    Clear Coat Tazz's Avatar
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    Tony -Tazz's Worklog

    Thanks Vic... you rocked it just as good .

    Time for some catching up here.



    While in the process of painting one of the panels, I pulled out the Xigmatek Thor's Hammer CPU cooler that I planned on installing on the build, seeing that I used the Spin-Q's in another area. So I did a quick spray on the top fin of the Thor's Hammer to allow it to blend in with the rest of the color scheme.

    I tossed about for several days trying to decide what I was going to do with the Power and Reset switches seeing how I removed the originals. I wasn't to worried about the Power and HDD LED indicators. I ended up having to choose between putting them in one of the Drive bay covers, or putting them under the case. My first problem with mounting them in the drive bay cover was the fact that I would have to open the door every time I wanted to power the system or reset it. It's bad enough having to open the door to put in / take out CD's or DVD's.




    So I nixed that idea pretty quickly. I then moved onto the lower section without doing a simple trial and error... I didn't have a 3/4" drill to do the proper size holes for the vandal switches I would be using. My quick and inexpensive fix for this was to use the sanding disc for my Dremel. I simply drilled 1/2" holes where I thought I needed them. I then angled the sanding disc and worked my way around the holes, grinding them on multiple angles trying to keep them relatively round. Once I had the hole big enough to fit the disc in I simply worked my way around the holes till they was large enough to slip the vandal switches in. Not the best, nor the quickest way, but it gets the job done.



    A little tip for everyone. Normally with Vandal switches you just slip your wires in the terminals and tight down a little screw. This works, but anyone that's messed with them before will tell you that normally the wire strands try to slide off to one side or the other. Before putting in my wires, I simply solder the ends so the wire stays in one clump. This way when I tighten down the screw it doesn't try to push part of the wires this way and the other part to the other side.



    Next come the challenge of installing the switches. This was a problem due to the Element-S having a small tray at the bottom of the case that the HDD cage actually aligns with and sits on. I was still planning on using the HDD cage in its stock form at this point, but needed to get my fat fingers up in there so I could put the nuts on the Vandal switches. Again, I take another shortcut to get a task completed. When working in tight spaces, there are times where you can not reach the area you need to. If you add a little tape to your wrench, socket, or even some gum if your in that situation, is all that is needed to hold the nut to your tool. Using the tape worked out perfectly for my application. Took a little longer to get the nuts on, but it's done .




    LOL... I soon found out that I didn't have enough room to slip my fat fingers under the front with the bezel on to hit the buttons. So the quick fix is to set the case up on a block of wood. I will either build a pair of taller feet for the case or relocate the switches yet again.

    />

    So now that I had most of it finished, I could start with the installation... This came to a quick stop though. I soon found out that the Asus Rampage III Extreme was a little larger than I had previously thought. The board of course supports up to 4 PCI-E cards and is meant for an extended ATX case. Well fitting it in the Element-S wasn't so bad in that respect. But the Asus Rampage III Extreme is also wider than the normal ATX board by roughly an inch or so. In order to mount the board I had to remove the rear fan (that I previously installed). It took every scrap fraction of space to slide it in past the Optical drive cage and the rear of the case. Once in place I secured it with 1 screw. I quickly noticed that the right hand edge of the board was actually touching the 45 angle of the motherboard tray where the wiring holes are. Spinning the system around to the back I also noticed that I would only be able to plug in maybe 1 of the 3 needed SATA connections.



    My alternative to this was to simply cut that 45 angle part of the motherboard tray off. I know this is going to weaken the tray a little, but it will give me the flexibility I need to be able to install the motherboard without having to worry about it shorting out against that piece of steel. It would also allow me to plug in everything that is needed. With the board being longer than normal, it also brought up an issue with the HDD cage. The wires all wanted to run right into the edge of it which would have forced me to locate most of them in the cage. Well I decided that I would just add a set of 3.5" to 5.25" adapters to the storage drive (WD 500 GB) and simply mount the OS drive (OCZ Solid State) to the top of the storage drive. This would allow me to tuck them both up in the top under the Asus Blu-Ray drive and keep them out of site. Now I did leave about an inch of the 45 angled piece attached at the top and bottom so I wouldn't totally kill the strength of the tray on that end of the motherboard.





    I then started installing the rest of the components. First up was the Asus Blu-Ray drive which had been painted to match the theme. I popped the top panel on next hoping that nothing went wrong with it. I had previously worked the top over and found that I had bondo lines still trying to pop up in the finish once I polished it. A week to the deadline I made the decision to redo it and resolve the issue. Well after I started the polishing on the 2nd go around. I seen yet again the same friggen lines popping up. I noticed that the more I polished the top the more they became noticeable. My assumption at this point, was that the polishing was causing the parts to heat up, the lines showed their selves because the plastic and bondo was expanding at different rates. Getting a picture of this didn't work out to well. Flash off the gloss of the panel hid them to well, with the flash on, the Red dominated the shot and hid them as well.




    If you look closely at this shot, you can see a line that runs from the left to the right. It's just a little bit above where the Modders-Inc.com watermark is. This is where the edge of the wood filler piece meets the plastic. I decided that with only a day or two till the deadline. I couldn't chance trying to repair it and have more issues causing me to miss the deadline. I thought that maybe once I got the system up and running, get some heat into the main part of the chassis that it might bring itself out of it. Well watching it closely over the last few days, it has gotten better, but its not 100%. If you look at the right angle with the right light you can still see a little bit of them.



    Next up came the final fitting with the side panels.



    Then after installing the side grills, I put the panels back on and made sure the grills had plenty of clearance. I had previously realized that they where to thick and had to trim them down a little. Thus causing me to have to re-paint them before this step.




    So everything is looking good at this point, and I decided to take a few more shots to see how the finish was turning out . The little car is something Tech Daddy picked up for each of us while at Quakecon a few weeks ago.

  2. #42

    Tony -Tazz's Worklog

    Nobody would have recognized that from what you started with. Nice job Tony!

  3. #43

    Tony -Tazz's Worklog

    OMG the spinQ smokestacks really make this build along with the gorgeous red paint job! Beautiful dude!!!

  4. #44
    Clear Coat Tazz's Avatar
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    Tony -Tazz's Worklog

    Thanks guys. The best feature of the mod I think is a toss up between the custom grill and the use of the Spin-Qs. I've gotten a lot of feed back on the Spin-Qs so far and most of its been "WOW". So I guess I did something right for once... Hehe...

  5. #45
    Clear Coat Tazz's Avatar
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    Tony -Tazz's Worklog

    Ok guys, here's my final shots.













  6. #46

    Tony -Tazz's Worklog

    Great job Tazz. You pulled it off nicely. Very clean. The Spin Q's as dual intakes is a great touch.

    D.

  7. #47
    Clear Coat Tazz's Avatar
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    Tony -Tazz's Worklog

    Thanks, PS.. they're dual exhaust just made to look like intakes

  8. #48

    Tony -Tazz's Worklog

    Ah.

    Nice any way you look at it.

    D.

  9. #49

    Tony -Tazz's Worklog

    Looks like someone needs to give that wallpaper a dose of RED!

  10. #50
    Clear Coat Tazz's Avatar
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    Tony -Tazz's Worklog



    I did end up working that over just a little bit. Not sure its the one I want to keep though.

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