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2.5" HDD in PCI slot

Discussion in 'Modding' started by DrFrag, Apr 28, 2011.

  1. DrFrag

    DrFrag Member

    Joined:
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    South Australia
    I bought a 2.5" hard drive for the OS on my norco box so I could dedicate all the 3.5" bays to storage. I figured it would be easy enough to attach the 2.5" bay somewhere else in the case, such as a PCI slot.

    I found this:
    http://www.auspcmarket.com.au/info/MIT-SC-SCKST-1000/185/
    and this:
    http://www.atechfabrication.com/products/drive_mounting_kits.htm

    Either one would end up costing me more than I spent on the hard drive itself, which I wasn't keen on.

    So I made this this morning:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Made from 1mm x 25mm aluminium strip, cut lenthwise to 10mm wide using a Dremel circular saw attachment (I couldn't find any thin, narrow aluminium). Filed down the rough edges. Folded in a sheet metal brake. Drilled some holes and rivetted it to the bracket.

    Probably cost me about a dollar in materials. I'm not sure exactly, it was just leftovers I had lying around.

    Very simple. :)
     
  2. Chif

    Chif Member

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    well done! I like it. Much more satisfying than buying something as well.
     
  3. callum14

    callum14 Member

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    This is quite inovative n.n i wouldnt mind something like this for my ssd's ;D
     
  4. kristianzanek

    kristianzanek Member

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    that is a very good idea.
     
  5. omaraa

    omaraa Member

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    Awesome.

    I would never have thought of using PCI slots for small HDDs. I might do that sometime...
     
  6. miicah

    miicah Member

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    Might be better for SSDs no?

    I would just think having a mechanical drive there with so little to support it from moving up and down inside the case might turn out badly.
     
  7. RAtSAcK

    RAtSAcK Member

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    You move your PC while it's running? :confused:

    But seriously, if it's only a desktop PC that doesn't get taken to LAN's or whatever then this seems fine. :thumbup:
     
  8. vid_ghost

    vid_ghost Member

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    so long as it doesnt have a super big hot videocard above it then its fine :) i wouldnt put my OS hard drive under a high/midrange videocard.
     
  9. terrastrife

    terrastrife Member

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    sunbeam tech pci whereever kit, multi fit hdd and fan bracket kit for slot mounts :)
     
  10. Garido

    Garido Member

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    brilliant job dude. You might even make a few quid offloading some spares :)
     
  11. panman9

    panman9 Member

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    looks good mate:thumbup:
     
  12. OP
    OP
    DrFrag

    DrFrag Member

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    Thanks everyone! :)

    It crossed my mind, but it's all good. There's no vibration at all. I can barely tell the drive is even on with my fingertips on it. I'm currently using a 320GB Hitachi drive, which is 6mm thick so I suspect it's a single platter.

    It's 2 slots away from a cheapo no-fan-required video card. And has a 120mm fan blowing on it.
     
    Last edited: May 4, 2011
  13. Pugs

    Pugs Member

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    nice work Dr frag... looks awesome...
     
  14. OP
    OP
    DrFrag

    DrFrag Member

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    Here's instructions for anyone interested in making one.

    Materials:
    1mm x 10mm x 270mm aluminium strip
    2 rivets
    1 reasonably flat expansion slot cover

    Tools:
    Sheet metal brake (even the cheapest, smallest will do the job)
    Rivet gun
    Power drill
    Metal file
    Metal shears

    Okay, to start with you need an expansion slot cover from a PC case. The flatter the better. Most have a "scoop" indentation to keep them rigid. I only had one that was shallow enough to rivet metal to - the scoops always seem to point towards the outside of the case so you're rivetting to the concave side. I'm not sure where to get these from. Maybe computer stores throw them out? Or you could look for old cases at scrapyards or on the footpath during hard rubbish collection.

    Next is the metal strip. I bought a piece of 1mm x 25mm x 1m aluminium from Bunnings for a few bucks. 25mm is too wide though, so I had to cut it lengthwise to 10mm (the width of the scoop in my expansion slot cover). For this I clamped it to a strip of wood and cut it with a circular saw Dremel attachment (they're about $50, I already had one). This is a bit of a pain and requires filing afterwards and it's not wonderfully accurate, so I'd recommend getting something cut to size. I enquired at Paramount Browns and they charge $3 per cut (using a huge machine). They also said they can do 10mm wide, but it'll curl slightly on the edges, so I'm not sure how that'd go. I reckon it'd be fine.

    To cut it to length, I used a pair of aviation shears. You could use a hacksaw or tin snips or whatever. Then file the end smooth so it looks nice and you don't cut yourself on it.

    For thickness, 1mm seems to work well. It's thick enough to be rigid, but thin enough to fold without tearing. Width is whatever fits the expansion slot cover (mine was 10mm). 2.5" drives are usually 9mm or 12mm thick, but the screws are in the same place so it doesn't really matter.

    Once you have a 1mm x 10mm x 270mm strip, fold it at 100mm and 170mm into a U shape. This is the U bracket. The space between the two folds is the most critical - it needs to be 70mm. That's the width of a 2.5" hard drive.

    Next step is to drill the holes for the hard drive. I think I used a 3mm or 3.5mm drill bit. There's a bit of flexability with measurements here, but I drilled mine 3mm from the edge (that's the distance on the hard drive between the circuit board side and the screw holes). The first holes (at the SATA connector end) should be 14mm from the end of the U bracket, and the other holes should be a further 77m along. Before drilling, punch the marked position with a nail and hammer to stop the drill from slipping. Once the holes are drilled, I like to clean any burs by spinning a large (say, 8mm) drill bit against them by hand.

    To connect the U bracket to the expansion slot cover, clamp them together and drill two holes for the rivets. Rivet them together.

    That's it.

    Let me know if anything needs clarifying.
     
  15. HUMMER

    HUMMER Member

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    Hey op. time to sell some for those that will never have the need for them tools except for this one off use.
     
  16. OP
    OP
    DrFrag

    DrFrag Member

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    I'm hoping someone else will step in there. ;)
     
  17. Pugsley_21

    Pugsley_21 Member

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    I made this one at work the other day, for an SSD (but with a dodgy ide 2.5" hdd to test). Made with an old PCI bracket from a network card, cost me nothing

    Will use it in the vertical PCI slot that my Fractal XL case has, as it doesn't quite fit properly when used in a normal PCI slot

    [​IMG]
     
  18. callum14

    callum14 Member

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    its facing the wrong way, just sayin
     
  19. brayway

    brayway Member

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    as he said, it is going in the vertical slot in his case:thumbup:
     
  20. zero_velocity

    zero_velocity Member

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    Pretty sure the HDD can just be rotated too.....
     

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