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Thread: Project BMW Mpower Level 10

  1. #1

    Project BMW Mpower Level 10

    My latest Project – Project BMW M-Power was born from the day Thermaltake released the Level 10 Case onto the world, as soon as I saw the tie in with BMW design works (even though they are a design house and not BMW themselves). For quite I few years I have always had in the back of my mind a Mod in dedication to one of my old rides, A 1998 BMW M3. Ok the car is long gone and is a bit out dated, but still I thought why the hell not, A M3 case Mod on a Level 10 from Thermaltake would still look nice, especially if I kept to my old cars paint scheme, white body work, red and black interior.

    My plan was to do the case white, with some airbrush work with Mpower logo and BMW logo as well as a M3 airbrushed into the case, as my old ride was from the 90s and the case from the 10s I decided to go with a theme based on the modern M3.

    So my plan was born and yes it was finally time to get it onto action, before I move on anymore I must first give Kudos to all the companies involved for making this possible the sponsors, who without which this mod would not be possible. Despite it taking me since the release of the Level 10 case for me to get it altogether went above and beyond the call of duty.

    First Up – The hardware involved and what I am planning

    Yes that is indeed a lot of Thermaltake product and I have to thank them a lot for supporting this mod, anyway here is a rundown of the specs and pieces of this mod.

    • CPU - AMD Phenom II X6 1055T
    • Mobo – Gigabyte 890FXA-UD7
    • Memory – Patriot G series 1600mhz 4 gig AMD kit
    • GPU – Ati Radeon HD 5850
    • Main HDD – Patriot 120GB Inferno SSD
    • Secondary HDD - 2 X WD RE3 Greens 1TBPSU – Thermaltake Tough Power Grand 750WCase - Thermaltake Level 10That is basically the System specs of the rig, also in the picture is the Thermaltake Esports products this includes.

      Thermaltake Esports Black Gaming mouseThermaltake Esports Challenger Pro KeyboardThermaltake Esports Shock Gaming headsetThermaltake Esports Dasher Mouse Pad
    I will show some more pictures of these products as and when I get to taking apart and them, well that just about sums up the specs and hardware of what I currently have (a few little tid bits and stuff is on route and I will add accordingly to log once products are here).

    Next up my rough plans via photoshop airbrushing.

  2. #2

    Project BMW Mpower Level 10

    I will not never claim I am a expert when it comes to photoshop, so please don’t flame me, these are rough mock ups what I plan to do with this mod and just to give a rough idea to those who are reading this of what my plans are.

    With the mouse I want it to match the theme and colours of the case, I don’t want to go overboard with it, but a nice airbrush on the mouse, with the TT glowing logo on the rear coming through the paint rather than being visible.

    The same with the keyboard, which I want to keep tied in with the rest of the theme

    The graphics card I also want to tie in with the white theme of the case, I especially want this done as the insides of the case will be white too.

    I was also planning to do the headset white, and mocked up one of them in white, but when it came for it to be sent out it I noticed a press release for the shock headset and it came in white as well... phew, that saved some time already :P what about the case? Well here is the plan for that.

    My plan is to get the whole case in white with a little BMW logo down the bottom of the front, on the HDD slots I plan to leave these white to break up the case a bit.

    The motherboard section, I plan to remove the stock metal plates (areas in red) and replace these with some red UV acrylic with some etchings, then covered by black tinted acrylic (2 layers of acrylic) with the black on the outer, the reason for this is so that with the lights of, the windows will just look plain black, but with the lights on, the etchings Edges will pop out.

    I am in 2 minds on the mobo section on either a clear just tinted section on the top (to give a nice view of the inside as UV acrylic sort of blurs the view) and AMD game logo actually airbrushed onto the mobo section in to right corner, or as picture with logo etched in the CPU area window. I have not decided on that yet.

    On the rear of the case the plan is to do a nice M power logo, with the actual M3 car airbrushed there...

  3. #3

    Project BMW Mpower Level 10

    Just a quick update, not much really, but taking a few bits apart, first up was the graphics card.

    The Graphics card I just had to separate the top cover from the block itself, I decided to just re attach the main block and plate after doing this to insure the board was not just left lying around bare. The next item was the keyboard.

    Striping the keyboard down was a pretty straight forward apart from having to make sure I had enough separate bags for the 25+ screws, especially the really tiny ones. now the main face plate is separated I can put that in the pile with the Graphic cards cooler cover, on to the mouse now.

    I am 100% sure Thermaltake mad this mouse so it should never come apart as it took me an hour or so to get the side sections off without breaking the clip, the main problem was the final screw was under the weight tray, which was glued or just solidly in, so I had to play and pull and twist (eww that don’t sound right ;P) for a while just to get these off.

    Taking the top layer off (palm rest section) was a lot easier and only took 5 minutes with gentle pulling, one bad thing though, was the centre section I had done red in photoshop was part of the main body, so I will be looking at something else to get that red.

  4. #4

    Project BMW Mpower Level 10

    Just i little update of what i done last night, this was just to get a rough idea of how it would really look with some of the plans.

    Of course there will be a uv etch added to the lower window as well the tint over it, still mulling over a few things to do, but i thought i would share what in general i am hoping for. also a couple more parts arrived during the week,

    As you can see I got the CPU block with red mounting plate to match the White red and black theme, also in the above picture is the mounting plates, while these are designed for mounting a pump to the radiator, I will be using them for mounting the radiators.

    Another thing I have been playing with is the finish idea, these are a couple of renders of what I would say is the final plan give or take a few tweaks.. also planning to replace as many of the stock screws and bolts with red ones, depends on what I can source really.

    This is defo the route I am going down, as I have already said I will be adding a few nit bits but this is the route I am planning for the main side.

    The rear I have a cunning plan for and will be kind of like this, except the M power will be replaced with the BMW Mpower logo as on the other side (same as on engine head) and the 3 stripe logo with the M will be going on the top right. The car you see at the bottom left will be airbrushed (hopefully) as seen bellow.

    And I have the exact opposite picture of the front of the car that will be etched into the lower window.

    As you can see this is the opposite image of the one above (just have to mess with logos) and I will try to place both so they line up (as if car is going through case)..

    Hopefully I will get most of the prep done this week for the paint and get the red bolts that I want to use.

  5. #5

    Project BMW Mpower Level 10

    more to the point I have got the keyboard, mouse and graphics card cover back.

    They have turned out really well, the Varnished finish is showing up superbly and makes the products look a lot better with the white. Let us start with the mouse.

    One thing you may notice, is the middle black section is different than the renders (I had them in red) but it was impossible to separate that part of the mouse from the body. But still I think the mouse came out really well, I also like the way it is white, with black and then the red lighted wheel and red DPI indicators.

    The keyboard come out too match the mouse, of course with the added M logo to tie in with the case, I wanted a proper matched feel with this project and I think this achieves it.

    I like the way the keyboard looks and the finish, I just am hoping the case turns out just as well.

    The theme of white black and red is carried on with the card as you can see I think the red white and black theme going through out the mod is a good combination, I think the ATI (now AMD) brand should go down this route.. Here are some more shots of the card.

    I love the finished effect on the card (oops I mentioned that already didn’t I :P) Ill have another update for you next week, this time it should be the case ï* as it arrives back from paint.

  6. #6

    Project BMW Mpower Level 10

    Hi all, Back again for another quick little update for you, this time I have a few quick pictures of the case after it had been airbrushed.

    Now to get to work on the windows to replace the standard metal plates, the idea is to have the top one in just black tint, inside the case, but the bottom will be black tint with red UV behind and of course some etching done (the opposite picture to the bmw on the rear).

    I love the way the Thermaltake Level 10 has come out in white, TBH it is the colour it should have been from the start.

    I will post up some more better pics once the build is complete, but there are a few things to get done first some of which are time consuming (the etch mainly). Also need to source some longish m3 hex bolts in red, but this is proving rather harder than I thought.

  7. #7

    Project BMW Mpower Level 10

    Well just a quick short update here on the watercooling parts, here is what I have so far, I am debating either a bay res (which is second on the list as I would have to route, tubes to there, or a swiftech micro res, note 100% sure which I will go with, but here is a picture of all the bits minus the res.

    As well as figuring out my res options, the only other dilemma is on the cabling inside, I am either going to go with the stock black and all power leads and fan leads ect, or I am going to mix it up, I just don’t want to overdo the white.

    I was maybe thinking braiding the Molex, sata and 3 pin cables white, and then Keeping the 8 Pin, 24pin and graphics card Power in black, just to break up all the white. Not sure which way I will go, but I suppose ill just have to braid the connecters and leave the others black, and then decide which way to go.

    Well after a bit of a hectic few weeks, I finally got some more work done this weekend on the project, although it was mainly layout work and using a template to line things up,

    First up, as you can pretty much see I mounted the radiator on the rear, the idea behind this is I want to keep all the watercooling on the motherboard tray, this includes pump, res and such.

    I also made a start on braiding the Front panel connectors as I thought it only right they match the case colour. I just have to wait for the crimpers to do the LED one.

    So I spent the next two and half hours after that working out placement of radiator and pump. I eventually decided with this layout. I have to order some brackets though to make the radiator fit better and just zip tied it for now until I can get some mechano parts from ebay to turn up.

    The pump I mounted to the rear PCi plates, I know I would not need the bottom 3 so this made this actually very ideal for the pump, so that is 2x 120mm radiators, Pump and res all mounted to the motherboard tray.

    Also put Rubber rings under the Pump to get rid of vibration, I am still waiting on a few things to turn up such as the lovely Tecnofont nano res, some mecanno bits and a few little pieces, but I thought I would post this to give you an Idea of what I am working too.

  8. #8

    Project BMW Mpower Level 10

    Sorry it took so long guys to post another update, had some delays in getting stuff, anyway, this turned up.

    This is the tecnofront reservoir from a company here in Europe, they came on board as a sponsor and supplied me with one of these.

    The Reservoir comes complete with its own barbs, I presume from this shot next to the barbs you can see how small this baby is.

    As well as this turning up I also decided to take one of the radiator pump mounts and cut it up a bit, here is a bit of before and after

    I Know of course all these photos are no good without a full explanation into placement, so I did a bit of work yesterday that involved some white paint for the pump mount come Radiator mount and installed the res in its place, I leave you a couple of shots as a teaser for now.

    Two coats of white paint and a coat of lacquer later the mount is white and now the front radiator is finally supported properly at last. The next picture of the reservoir also gives you a better impression of how dinky it is.

    I think this shot shows really how small the reservoir is, and for this project it is a perfect fit don’t you think?

    Ill update some more later this week as I go through the hose connecting options for the rest of the setup and of course the shot of the complete loop sitting on the mobo tray out of the rig.

  9. #9

    Project BMW Mpower Level 10

    Well as promised back again with another update for you, Spent all day Wens messing about with the tubing and wiring to make sure it all fits without no issues, also braided the mobo pwr, led and reset switch properly. First up, let us take a look at the res plumbed in.

    It was a bit tight, but in the end I was able to put it together without any tubes touching, before we have a look at the layout on the motherboard here is the little treat that makes the Tecnofront Res so handy, you just open out the DVD drive bay section of the case and this is the view you get.

    So that makes filling the loop up pretty darn easy if you ask me, then to drain it, it would be just a case of disconnecting a few sata cables, a few fnt panel usb cables and 24pin pwr, 8 pin pwr and of course the VGA power cables.

    It was actually quite mad setting this up and thank god I did not put the water in until I had the graphics card setup and this is why..

    As you can see the tubing is obviously going to get in the way of the card, to be quite honest it is a minor issue, but one that was spotted in time and only caused a bit of re placing the tubes in a different order. Anyway let me place it in with the graphics card and see how it looks.

    Now the loop is fixed to how it should be.

    There are a couple of issues though I should point out and the main being the 24 pin pwr cable, I am defo going to get a braided extension for it so I can run the cable behind the tubes rather than leave this one with the unsightly wires on show.

    I am actually quite proud that I worked out a way to fit the whole loop on the mobo tray, and I was thinking over time of getting individual braided cables for the Lot, If I go down the BitFenix root I can quite literally have extensions on the USB, Audio, Fnt pwr, reset and led and GPU power connectors so that to take the tray out I only need to disconnect connectors round the back. But that is for another time.

    Just a shot to show you that I am nearly there, the top CPU window is getting a sheet of tinted acrylic actually placed in the inside of the case to make it flush.

    The bottom window is going to get 2 layers of acrylic, the bottom one red and a layer of tinted in front of that, this will be mounted in the same way though as the original metal plate so that it sticks out and is flues with the upper left of the mobo section. The etching will be done on the red acrylic and if the white lights do not make it pop, I am sure 2 uv ones will.

  10. #10

    Project BMW Mpower Level 10

    Not much of a major update as my weekend turned out a lot busier than I planned (in other words misses had me out shopping... one of my top 10 hates that)... anyway the acrylic is cut.

    Obviously the two large sections are as I mentioned for the lower section and the smaller section for the upper, the two lower sections will be sandwiched together with the black tint on the outside, I will be mounting these in a similar position to the original and etching the red acrylic with the front of the BMW seen airbrushed onto the back of the case.. However as the top window needs no etching. Let us see how that looks placed in.

    As you can see it slightly tints the opening (will be having lights that can be switched on and off). I actually love the way it sits nice and flush to the panel.

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