VOGONS


First post, by tegrady

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Good afternoon!

I bought this new old stock AT/ATX Steel Case recently. It appears to have been sold in 1999, but it looks older to me. It is all steel construction. Most cases from this era are steel, but this has got to have the thickest gauge steel I have encountered in a computer case. It weighs 37 lbs empty!

It is nearly mint, except for one ding near the top front of the case.

I would love to use it for a sleeper build, but there is one problem. There are literally no exhaust ports in this case! I'm fairly certain a modern system would overheat as-is. It's kind of funny that the advert for this specific case says that it has extra cooling. I would strongly disagree with that statement. They must be referring to the two 80mm intake fans.

If you look at the pics, the plate at the back of the case where the power supply attaches has a space above it that would fit up to a 92mm exhaust fan rather nicely. The only problem is that I would need to cut a hole for the fan and the screws. I have no tools that can do that cleanly.

Does anyone have any suggestions on how I can get a fan mount cut into that panel? Is there a person or a company I can use that will cut it out for me? Any help would be appreciated. Thanks!

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Reply 1 of 17, by pentiumspeed

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You need to modify the rear panel above the PSU to have 120mm fan venting out. This case is poorly designed for cooling.

Cheers,

Great Northern aka Canada.

Reply 2 of 17, by imi

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it looks like the PSU plate and the plate above that are removable and actually just screwed in at the back?

if so you could easily manufacture (or let someone do it) a plate to go there instead 😀 and you wouldn't even have to sacrifice any original parts.

edit: ah in the ad page you posted you can indeed see that they are removable and they installed a big redundant PSU there instead.

Reply 3 of 17, by tegrady

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imi wrote on 2020-03-30, 19:46:

it looks like the PSU plate and the plate above that are removable and actually just screwed in at the back?

if so you could easily manufacture (or let someone do it) a plate to go there instead 😀 and you wouldn't even have to sacrifice any original parts.

edit: ah in the ad page you posted you can indeed see that they are removable and they installed a big redundant PSU there instead.

Yes, it is removable.

I have no doubt it would be easy to manufacture a custom plate if I had a CNC machine or a water jet machine, but, sadly, I have nothing like that.

Any suggestions on any services available in the USA that could do such a thing? I have no clue.

Thanks.

Reply 4 of 17, by cyclone3d

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Dremel tool and heavy-duty cut-off disks to make the hole for the fan.

For the fan screw holes a drill and a drill bit is what you want.

If you really don't have the needed tools and don't want to buy / borrow the needed tools, you can always make a mount for the fan out of thick cardboard provided you have scissors or a box knife.

Yamaha YMF modified setupds and drivers
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Reply 5 of 17, by tegrady

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cyclone3d wrote on 2020-03-30, 19:52:

Dremel tool and heavy-duty cut-off disks to make the hole for the fan.

For the fan screw holes a drill and a drill bit is what you want.

If you really don't have the needed tools and don't want to buy / borrow the needed tools, you can always make a mount for the fan out of thick cardboard provided you have scissors or a box knife.

The problem with that is that the plate is a solid piece and includes the mounting area for the power supply. I would have to cut the plate in half in order to leave the power supply mount intact.

Also, I'd like it to look as professional as possible, so cardboard is out.

I think I would need to have a professional cut out the fan mount for me or cut an entirely new plate. I'm just not sure who would be able to do something like that.

Thanks for the suggestion though.

Reply 7 of 17, by tegrady

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Lylat1an wrote on 2020-03-30, 19:56:

There are tools called "Hole saws" that will make a giant circular hole. Use a 120 or 140mm one.

I strongly advise using a drill press as well. Also, you'll need to make holes for the four fan mounting screws

This would be a great suggestion if I had such tools or access to them, but I don't.

I think I need to find a business that will do it for me. Any suggestions on who could do it?

Thanks.

Reply 8 of 17, by Lylat1an

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I borrowed a friend's garage when I modded my giant tower case, but I needed to buy my own hole saw.

Get a name-brand one, my cheapo wasn't a perfect circle.

As for who can do it, you can ask your friends if any of them have a drill press, or Google a local machine shop.

Reply 10 of 17, by imi

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tegrady wrote on 2020-03-30, 19:51:
Yes, it is removable. […]
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imi wrote on 2020-03-30, 19:46:

it looks like the PSU plate and the plate above that are removable and actually just screwed in at the back?

if so you could easily manufacture (or let someone do it) a plate to go there instead 😀 and you wouldn't even have to sacrifice any original parts.

edit: ah in the ad page you posted you can indeed see that they are removable and they installed a big redundant PSU there instead.

Yes, it is removable.

I have no doubt it would be easy to manufacture a custom plate if I had a CNC machine or a water jet machine, but, sadly, I have nothing like that.

Any suggestions on any services available in the USA that could do such a thing? I have no clue.

Thanks.

maybe look for a "front panel" manufacturing service... or ask a friend of a friend working in a machine shop :p

Reply 11 of 17, by chinny22

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I also suffer from "limited shop skills2 as you in the US of A would call it
I can see 2 options that suit my skill level, neither are great though.
Cable tie a fan on on the vent holes next to the I/O shield.
Drill holes into the plate knowing it'll look rough but as it's round the back no one will notice.

Otherwise your relying on friends or friends of friends that may have the tools required

Reply 12 of 17, by red-ray

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For a professional job you need to use a hole punch (https://www.cabletooling.co.uk/round-hole-pun … hes-66-7-120mm/), but given what a 120mm one costs I suggest you look for a local fabrication shop that already has one.

Reply 13 of 17, by wiretap

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I've used hole saws successfully with a pretty clean cut, then filed the edges to make it perfectly smooth. I've done 60mm, 80mm, and 120mm. It should take less than 10 minutes start to finish.

If you don't have tools, buy some to do the job right. Going to a fabricator for such a small job will usually get you charged the minimum 1hr and probably almost as much as if you just purchased a fair quality tool to begin with.

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Reply 14 of 17, by cyclone3d

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I've been using a dremel tool with cutting disks to make perfect holes in cases ever since I was a teen.. so for about 26 years. And I have had the same dremel tool that I bought all those years ago.

All you have to do is draw the circle on the metal using a template or a compass so you have a perfect circle.

The you just follow the line with the dremel tool.

Once the hole is cut out, a fine round or half-round file or even sand paper can be used to clean up the edge where you cut.

Yamaha YMF modified setupds and drivers
Yamaha XG resource repository - updated November 27, 2018
Yamaha YMF7x4 Guide
AW744L II - YMF744 - AOpen Cobra Sound Card - Install SB-Link Header
Epstein didn't kill himself

Reply 16 of 17, by aha2940

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cyclone3d wrote on 2020-03-31, 14:09:
I've been using a dremel tool with cutting disks to make perfect holes in cases ever since I was a teen.. so for about 26 years. […]
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I've been using a dremel tool with cutting disks to make perfect holes in cases ever since I was a teen.. so for about 26 years. And I have had the same dremel tool that I bought all those years ago.

All you have to do is draw the circle on the metal using a template or a compass so you have a perfect circle.

The you just follow the line with the dremel tool.

Once the hole is cut out, a fine round or half-round file or even sand paper can be used to clean up the edge where you cut.

Which tool do you use with your dremel to do these cuts? could you please post a pic?

Reply 17 of 17, by cyclone3d

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aha2940 wrote on 2020-03-31, 16:44:
cyclone3d wrote on 2020-03-31, 14:09:
I've been using a dremel tool with cutting disks to make perfect holes in cases ever since I was a teen.. so for about 26 years. […]
Show full quote

I've been using a dremel tool with cutting disks to make perfect holes in cases ever since I was a teen.. so for about 26 years. And I have had the same dremel tool that I bought all those years ago.

All you have to do is draw the circle on the metal using a template or a compass so you have a perfect circle.

The you just follow the line with the dremel tool.

Once the hole is cut out, a fine round or half-round file or even sand paper can be used to clean up the edge where you cut.

Which tool do you use with your dremel to do these cuts? could you please post a pic?

Right angle adapter:

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Flex shaft depending on location of cut - I have the original one that doesn't have the "comfort grip":

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Cut-off discs - I don't necessarily use the Dremel branded ones as the generic rotary tool ones work just fine.

The standard ones are dremel 409 and are fine for aluminum and work better for tighter angles as they are pretty thin. They don't last very long at all though.

The heavy duty ones are dremel 420.

Harbor Freight sells generic discs and they are just as good as the Dremel branded ones.

Once the holes are drawn on the surface I just free-hand follow the lines. It is much easier if you can steady your one hand with your other hand in order to keep the tool way more steady.

If you want to prevent damage from the discs grabbing and skipping across the surface when starting out you can use painters tape to follow the outside of the drawn line for protection.

It is much easier to cut a slight guide line all the way around before cutting all the way through.

I would recommend practicing on some scrap to get the hang of being able to cut holes / curves like this if you haven't done it before.

120mm fan holes are pretty easy to cut. 92mm not so much and 80mm is about the minimum size I would cut this way.

One other thing. I set the RPM pretty high to do the cuts. Low speeds are just going to end up causing the discs to grab and not work very well.

I generally do let my Dremel tool and the right angle adapter cool off once they start getting too warm.

Yamaha YMF modified setupds and drivers
Yamaha XG resource repository - updated November 27, 2018
Yamaha YMF7x4 Guide
AW744L II - YMF744 - AOpen Cobra Sound Card - Install SB-Link Header
Epstein didn't kill himself