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Old 28th May 2012, 11:25 PM   #246
Saate Thread Starter
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Location: Canberra, Australia
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[UPDATE] - Midplate Design

Getting into the guts of things now, so to speak! :) One of the key design considerations for me in approaching this build so far has been the rejection of conventional ways of doing things. It's the same philosophy that lead to all the custom stickers, the 480mm radiator mod, the copper piping and the (in progress) custom reservoir holders.

I don't like ordinary and predictable, and you know whats ordinary and predictable? Placement of the PMP-450 pump in an 800D build. On it's stock stand the pump doesnt quite fit down in the lower compartment which means the majority of modders position it on the midplate next to the hotswap bay - usually in an awkward and ugly way :) If not the midplate the other place you're likely to see the PMP-450 is inside a combined pump/reservoir drive bay device.

In a loop using hard copper pipes the pump needs to be connected using flexible tubing to prevent the transfer of vibration to the case. This presented me with a real design challenge! I couldnt fit the pump into the lower section of the case to hide the flexible tubing part of the loop, and I didnt want the tubing messing up the look up above. It took me a while to figure this one out :)

I started off by measuring the length and width of the midplate (with the hotswap bay removed) and used the measurements to cut out a piece of cardboard. Sitting the AX1200 and Hotswap Bay on the cardboard helped me figure out how much space I had to work with in the lower compartment if I move the hotswap down there - not much:



I also took the opportunity to upgrade the hotswap bay to SATA 3 which made for some nice shots. Would be silly not to share! :)









Love this shot!



Screws from the hotswap bay:



After getting a better idea for clearances below I put the cardboard piece on top of the midplate so I could start thinking about where to put the pump. It's attached to two stands in the pictures because I got sick of the wires getting in the way.







Having the pump on the two stands ended up providing me with the solution I was after. Next up came some more measurements to see how it looked:





Cut the hole out and used black electrical tape for my mock u-channel edging:



...and there we go! A unique pump mounting solution that confers the benefit of showing off the silver housing, while still concealing the flexible tubing in the bottom of the case:





Some additional measurements to locate bulkhead fittings:





..and finally some kitchen sink tests to make sure the pump still functioned effectively in the vertical orientation - it did!



Where to from here? Next steps are drafting up the midplate design to send to a lasercutter and designing a mounting system for the pump in that position as the stock stands take up too much space already.

Would love to hear your feedback guys :)
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