Azekeil (azekeil) wrote,
Azekeil
azekeil

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Case mods ahoy!

Wow.

Okay yesterday was a day of productivity. Today is turning out to be a troubleshooting day with lots of busy-ness all round.

I'm just writing this while waiting for something to time out in the system I'm testing at the moment. Nearly there :)

Well enough of my work.

Yesterday after work Ric and I went to the Mall at Cribb's Causeway to look for strips of metal I might use for a case modification project I planned for that evening.

We had no luck in the Mall, and decided to get a pizza and have a chat while we were there. As always it was a good chat that was fairly enlightening.

I sinned twice yesterday. I had a beer at lunch time, but only because it was free. Ric then bought me a beer with the pizza, which he also bought - very kind of him ;). Ah well I think I might have to make an exception every now and again for a mid-week free beer :)

So I spent most of the evening doing this case modification (which you can read about by clicking below if it should interest you) and ended up knackered and didn't make an entry as I had intended before crashing out to bed.



Case Modification

The case modification is to extend my HDD bay in a spare case I had. This would become the new case for gateway (the FTP server), as all the HDDs wouldn't fit in the current case and I was also worried by the fact it hung the other night - I thought that the current power supply might not handle 5 HDDs.

After failing miserably at the Mall we went to Wickes (a hardware shop) in the retail complex just down the road from the Mall and after some creative thinking managed to dig up a suitable piece of metal in the form of a 2.4m piece of metal with a right-angle bend running down it's length. It's original purpose is to act as a wall corner reinforcement for plastered walls. It's thin enough to work with without being too weak, and it even had slits drilled in it at regular intervals that were just the right size for HDD screws :)

So we got back home and took some bits of wood, two pairs of pliers, a hammer and a hacksaw upstairs to begin the case mod.

I cut off (read: tore off with the pliers) 4 of the right length of strips to reach to the bottom of the case while allowing it to be secured by screws through the existing HDD tray into a HDD there. I then used the pliers to flatten out the strips sufficiently to be put in between the wood and hammered flat.

Then it was a simple (!) case of replacing the existing power supply in the new case with the 300W one. Ah. Then I realised that I was replacing an AT power supply with an ATX power supply. This meant that I would need an additional lead running from the power switch to the motherboard to switch the power on and off. In the end I decided to use the reset switch for this purpose as I couldn't find / didn't have the additional switch to hand.

I then transplanted the motherboard from the existing case to the new one with no real hiccups until I came to connect the reset switch to the motherboard. I then realised I didn't have the manual for the motherboard and despite my careful writing down of where the cables for the LEDs and switches were before I realised I didn't know where the pins were for switching the machine on..! So I decided that I could always look on the internet for the manual.. then I realised my mistake. The machine that connects us all to the internet was lying in pieces in my hands. Ah. Problem.

"Oh well," I thought, "I'll just have to try each set of pins that's not already taken up by connectors until I find the right one!". This wasn't too much of a problem as it turned out as the first pair of pins I connected WERE the power pins :)

So after checking it powered on I went about installing all the HDDs and discovered that my makeshift bay was in fact very sturdy - a lot sturdier than I had feared it would be without any supports at the bottom.

A final modification to the face plate of the case by sticking a little screw to the reset button to make the awkward sod easier to press and hey presto I was done!

I'll put up some pictures when I get round to it.

Unfortunately, I think there is a conflict between the new ATA card and the network card as whenever both are accessed it hangs to such an extent that I have to physically switch the machine off. I'll have to look into that. I have a spare 100mbit network card so I might try putting that in instead of the one that's in there and seeing if that clears up the problem. Otherwise it's time to swap it over to a decent motherboard instead of the PC-Chips piece of shit that's in there currently...

And I might actually be able to sell that as well, so this could turn out to be quite a good idea after all.

Then the only problem is I'd then need a replacement CD burning machine.. hmm... wonder if I can bring myself to stick all that in my main games machine.
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