The HTPC Saga pt4
I came up with a solution to my case problems. LEGO!
LEGO is awesome; it requires no tools, I found a big box of it on top of a wardrobe, and if the computer dies in a few weeks/months, I can simply dismantle the case and re-use the pieces… maybe in a truck or a space ship…
I started off with some of the big flat green bits to use as the base, and after setting the computer on top, filled in the rest of the base with smaller flat pieces. I then basically built around the outside of the computer in blocks, up to a height of two layers (I wanted to keep the whole thing quite low profile).
Anywhere there was I/O I needed to use, I left blank after a height of 1 block to allow access. The fit is quite snug, you can connect cables without the board moving around.
There are a few interesting details:
The activity light circuit board has been sandwiched in the front and is visible through some translucent blue pieces, unfortunately they’re quite dim and don’t quite look blue. I’ll maybe swap for something a little more transparent.
The fan exhausts through a couple of white fence pieces, they’re nearly the right size and look quite amusing :P
The power switch to the laptop is on the opposite side of the board to the cooler (as it would have originally been upside down) so it’s rather difficult to turn the machine on. I racked my brains for an age to find a solution and finally settled on a simple rocker which when pressed, pushes on the switch. It’s not exactly tactile but it works!
After the switch problem was solved, I decorated the front with a few flat pieces that I
used to still think are awesome.
I’m left with a gaping hole in the top, and I don’t have enough flat pieces to fill it in, luckily I had some (quite thick) perspex lying around, so a few minutes later, I’ve got a roof window!
I think I’m pretty close to finishing the project, but the fan needs a bit more airflow, I planned to drill some holes in the Perspex over the fan, but can’t think of an interesting pattern. If I’m stumped or I don’t possess the skills for anything elaborate, I’ll just drill a radial pattern.
I also found a can of glass frosting, which might make a nice effect if I sprayed a logo/name on the window? May be a bit pointless without illumination though.