nelsoncp21
2008-04-09T14:22:17Z

Hey guys I got my case in today and I had in taken apart within 20 mins of getting it through the door. I thought I would start this thread off by posting some pics of the case before I start hacking away at it. This thing is one sexy looking cube and you really got to admire the build and design byt eh people at Lian Li. As I stated I had this thing apart in 20 mins and that's including carrying it upstairs, unpacking it and taking it apart. Enjoy!

Here's a pic of the case still in it's shipping box.

case in shipping box

Unpacking the box!

unpacking case

Stock case untouched!

case completely unpacked

Back of case

back of stock case

 

Front panel off. the front panel removed very easily with slightly pulling on it. It was held in by 4 plastic tabs, 1 in each corner. No screws or rivets needed to be removed.

 

front panel removed

 

Motherboard side panel off. Came off by removing 2 thumbscrews in the rear of the case.

 

MB side panel removed

 

Right side panel off. Came off the same way by removing 2 thumbscrews in the rear of the case.

 

right side panel removed

 

Top panel off. The top panel came off by removing 6 phillips head screws. The front 3 screws aren't visible until you reove the front panel.

 

top panel removed

 

5.25" bay covers, switches,leds and front ports removed. The bay covers just pop out. The switches and leds were held in by plastc inserts which came out fairly easily by pulling on the side tabs. It was easier to remove the switch from the plastic insert while still in the case than the insert came out with ease. The front panel ports came out by removing 2 phillips head screws.

 

5.25" covers and front connector's,switches and LEDs removed

 

PSU backplate and motherboard backplate removed. both backplates were held in by phillips head screws.

 

psu and MB plate removed

 

Here's everything I took off

 

All parts removed on first day

 

I will post more pics as I go along so stay tuned. The next batch will entail drilling out the rivets and removing the inners! Also I have changed my design yet again so We'll see how this works out!

 

 

willardcw4
2008-04-09T15:16:16Z

cool man.. that is a HUGE case... what are you doing with it? (i.e. gaming, server, etc.)

nelsoncp21
2008-04-09T17:26:47Z

Mostly gaming, some oc'n. I picked that case to have plenty of room for watercooling and modding. I could have saved half the work with the new MM cases but it's not as much fun and I don't care for the thumbscrews sticking out on every corner of the MM cases.

Der Meister
2008-04-09T18:28:22Z

 cant wait to see more!

Dave_HH
2008-04-09T18:30:39Z

(In my best Borat voice) Very niiiiiice! 

Super Dave
2008-04-09T19:33:22Z

That is a very interesting case, nelson! I have never seen anything like it and I can't wait to see the final PICS showing what you have done with it!

nelsoncp21
2008-04-10T15:01:26Z

I finished gutting down to it's frame today. I took some more pics of the steps I took. It took me about 30 mins to accomplish including clean up all the fragments of metal and poprivets all over my basement floor. Luckily I have a nice size section of my basement unfinished which will also be slowly modded into a workshop area. Ignore the cardboard boxes for now I haven't picked up a workbench yet so the boxes surved quite nicely.

 

I used a cheap black and decker 12v drill and it worked out very well. There is no need to go and buy an expensive drill for this step which was good for me since I left my 18V Dewault at work. I used a standard 1/8 metal bit to drill out most of the poprivets.

 

drilling out poprivets

 

With a few poprivets remove from the front and bottom of the case the 5.25" bay cages came out pretty easy.

 

removing 5.25" bay cages

 

The motherboard tray had a few more poprivets in it holding it firmly in place. They were located in the front, bottom and rear of case. The motherboard tray was also attached to 1 of the 5.25" bay cages so it has to be removed at the same time in order to get to the poprivets connecting them together. A little force and it popped right out.

 

removing MB tray

 

Lain Li threw me a curve here and used larger poprivets to hold on the wheels. I had to use a 5/32 bit to drill these out.

 

removing wheels

 

And here is everything I removed by drilling out the poprivets. I should also note that the top plate for the 5.25" bay cages were held on by poprivets also. This was nice cause I thought I was going to have to cut them off in order for my raptors to be seen through the top window of the case. I may be able to use them to make the custom brackets for my dual rad on the side of my case later down the road.

 

all inners removed drilling out poprivets

 

There she is all gutted down to the frame. I was very surprised out how sturdy the case was still with everything removed. It did not twist or warp at all which is good. I was afraid I may have to add some support tot he case but I don't think that will be the case now.

 

case completely gutted down to frame

 

So that's it. Next step is to start cutting the windows. The easy part is over.

Super Dave
2008-04-11T20:47:37Z

This looks to be a very interesting project, and I appreciate that you have taken the time to post all of those PICS. I can't wait for your next installment, nelson!

nelsoncp21
2008-04-12T08:36:30Z

Just trying to contribute. I got to take care of some stuff on the honey-do-list then I can pick up the blades to cut the windows this evening. I should be able to update by tomorrow evening. Hopefully this thread will spark others into modding and we will see alot more of these threads around here.

ice91785
2008-04-12T11:15:16Z

I would like to do something like this - I have toyed with the idea forever but as with anything never seemed to have found the time.

Another project i've been contemplating: Setting up either a print server or storage server....and trying to make it work out with at least one Mac, one XP PC and one Vista PC. Just more to broaden my own knowledge.

Nelson -- loving the pics man! I am excited to see the finished product. Are you just throwing in standard water-cooled setup or...?

nelsoncp21
2008-04-12T12:47:08Z

My design seems to be ever chaging but as of right now I am down to 3 water loops. 1 for SLI with a triple rad, 1 for cpu and chipset with a triple rad and than 1 for raid with a dual rad. I have eliminated the ram loop more because I haven't found a memory cooling solution that I am satisfied with. I have not settled on hardware specifics yet since the case will take several months to complete. I will get the rads without the fittings so I can adjust accordingly. Alot can change in terms of hardware in the computer industry in a couple months!

AjayD
2008-04-12T16:11:11Z

With all the radiators you are planning to install, I can see why you chose to go with such a large case. I along with everyone else I'm sure, definitely appreciate all the step-by-step pics as you go along. I look forward to more pics and to see how your overall design progresses.

Keep us posted.[8-|]

higgamo
2008-04-13T12:09:28Z

wow nice alot of rads, this rig gonna run nice and cool. can wait to see more pic! Good luck man!

nelsoncp21
2008-04-13T17:40:54Z

So I cut the window for my side panel today. In the past I have used just a dremel with the 1.5" reinforced cutting disk but this time I tried something different in an attempt to get a straighter cut. I decided to do most of the cutting using a dremel with a 18-24 tpsi metal cutting blade. I had also purchased a guide for the jigsaw to acheive a perfectl straight line. That didn't work out so well since the panel was so thin the guide didn't stay along the edge of the panel to well and I actually acheived better cuts doing it freehand. There wasn't much filing needed since the cuts were pretty clean. Here's some pics.

 

Side panel tapped up using painters tape with the outline drawn.

 

Tapping and outline

 

IN order to cut using the jigsaw I had to start each line first by macking a cut with my dremel.

 

start cut with dremel

 

I than cutout the ouline using the jigsaw and it went alot faster and the lines were alot straighter than if I had used a dremel for the intire thing.

 

finish cut with jigsaw

 

I than took a standard flat file and just touched up on the inside of the panel to get rid of any jagged peices left behind. I than removed the tape and was all done.

 

remove tap after fileing

 

Now obviously the lines aren't perfect but they are pretty darn close with the exception of the 1 where I tried to use the saw guide. I had some u channeling from work I was going to use but it turned out to be to thick for this so I will have to get some smaller u channel molding. I wanted to get a pic to show you with the molding that it covers up any minor imperfections but you'll have to wait on that. Even without the molding on there I think it looks pretty darn good. I have to paint the panel before I attach the acrylic which I will get to painting after I cut in the top window possibly tomorrow.

nelsoncp21
2008-04-14T17:24:31Z

I got the top window cut today. I actually have my first complaint about this case. The plate that comes precut on the top panel is held on by screws that require an allen wrench. 1 that I just happen not to have the right size for. You would think something as cheap as the right size allen wrench would be inlcuded with the package of hardware that comes with this case. Just the little things you tend to notice I guess. Here's a pic.

 

top window cut

 

I have to pick up some paint and sanding tools. After I paint 1 of the panels I am gonna send it to my dad to play around with the airbrush so we can see how it will turn out before we attempt the whole case. I would do the air brush myself but it wold cost way to much for the equipment and well he already has everything. I wish I cold borrow it from him but he uses it on a dialy bases for his model trains. After I paint the side panels and wait for them to come back I will order the rads and measure and start cutting to install them.