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Old 08-04-2009, 05:28 PM   #1
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Default Building a custom pc

hey,

I am planning on building a custom pc and having a modified case, for my senior project in school. I was planning on having the case being Optimus Prime (in semi-truck mode). Housing most/all of the parts inside trailer of the semi. I just need help picking out the parts. Also, I am a bit of a newbie when it comes to building computers. Anyway, for the motherboard I was looking at:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16813500010

and for ram:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16820134045

What else do I need? A processor? I realize I will need a hard drive and cd/dvd drive.

Also, I prefer shopping at newegg. And cheap is what I am going for. This isn't supposed to be a powerful computer. As long as I can run linux or something.
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Old 08-04-2009, 05:43 PM   #2
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Default Re: Building a custom pc

If you want it just to work with no bells or whistles.
Motherboard

Processor

RAM, you might want to get two of these

Power Supply

CD DVD Reader

Hard Drive

Now this is just the hardware you would need to get the computer RUNNING.
This won't really do much in terms of power or performance.
If you just want to show this works, that is the hardware you need.
However, if you have a price, we can build you the best computer you can get for the price.

The main problem is your custom case.
You will have to put fans on it, so the computer will actually be able to run, without overheating. (Simply put two fans, one in front one in back, and plug them into your Motherboard)
Another problem is the power switch. You will have to somehow make a power button, connected with a wire, that will plug in with the motherboard.
Do you have a price for it? Do you want it to do something? Or do you want to put it in the case and just simply turn it on to show your teacher?
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Old 08-04-2009, 05:44 PM   #3
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Default Re: Building a custom pc

You need a processor, video card, motherboard, case, ram, powersupply, dvd drive, harddrive, and anything extra you want. I would suggest giving him LEd's in his eyes, one for power and one for HDD access, just to make it extra cool. Also, how in the heck are you gonna make a case like that?
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Old 08-04-2009, 05:57 PM   #4
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Default Re: Building a custom pc

Quote:
Originally Posted by GibsonSGKing View Post
You need a processor, video card, motherboard, case, ram, powersupply, dvd drive, harddrive, and anything extra you want. I would suggest giving him LEd's in his eyes, one for power and one for HDD access, just to make it extra cool. Also, how in the heck are you gonna make a case like that?
Video card is not needed.
Many cheaper motherboards come with onboard visual cards, they aren't good, but they work.
I'm most concerned about the power button.
Another thing, Motherboards are squarish, while a trailer is rectangular....
So you may end up with a square trailer, which won't look good.
If you want to do something with computers, why not build a cheap computer, hook up some sound activated cathodes, and make your computer seemingly flash to the music, or something like that.
This project will be hard, especially to make a trailer for the motherboard.
You will have to devise a power button, make holes for the motherboard screws (It will take a long time to line them all up)
Make a hole for the I\O panel (Where all the cords plug into)
Making holes for fans etc.
But if you do do it, please post pictures!
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Old 08-04-2009, 06:08 PM   #5
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Default Re: Building a custom pc

I like the LED idea. I don't know how to do that, but i am sure I could figure it out.

Whyflyy??, you are a big help. I will talk with some family to see if all that would work for what I want to do.

I was thinking about building the case out of balsa wood. Or some other lightweight, yet sturdy wood. That way it would be easy to buy, cut, and paint. I still need to make some sketches so that I can figure out how I would arrange the parts inside the trailer of the truck.

I was thinking about having the motherboard tipped on its side(so that way I could use the height of the trailer to my advantage, and not build a real wide trailer). I am going for a more oldschool look of optimus prime. kind of like:



Anyways, any and all feedback is appreciated. Once I get this project rolling, I will for sure have pictures and what not.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Whyfly?? View Post
Video card is not needed.
Many cheaper motherboards come with onboard visual cards, they aren't good, but they work.
I'm most concerned about the power button.
Another thing, Motherboards are squarish, while a trailer is rectangular....
So you may end up with a square trailer, which won't look good.
If you want to do something with computers, why not build a cheap computer, hook up some sound activated cathodes, and make your computer seemingly flash to the music, or something like that.
This project will be hard, especially to make a trailer for the motherboard.
You will have to devise a power button, make holes for the motherboard screws (It will take a long time to line them all up)
Make a hole for the I\O panel (Where all the cords plug into)
Making holes for fans etc.
But if you do do it, please post pictures!
I hope I mentioned that this is a senior project. (and it is still summer). So I really have about from now until say...march of next year to learn how to build it, sketch it and...build it.
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Old 08-04-2009, 07:44 PM   #6
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Default Re: Building a custom pc

Oh that's good you have a while.
Here's a tip, if you're going to do something, overdo it
Put cathodes that are sound activated and find a sound you like, so that the truck lights up to it.
Balsa is a good sturdy material, but I would make sure it is sturdy and to put a fan on top, so when the heat rises, the fan would suck it out.
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Old 08-04-2009, 08:07 PM   #7
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Default Re: Building a custom pc

I will definitely try to go over the top. But I want to get the basics down first. I am sure if I get the thing made and I have everything going on schedule. I will add to it. Like...

you press the exhaust pipes down to start the machine. Maybe some tail lights or something with LED to show that the system is on.

I need advice on where to arrange everything, that way I can start making sketches. Making blue prints. And dimensions for the wood.

So, for the basics. Where should I place everything to make it all fit and be accessible? I was thinking that I would have the motherboard attached to the left inside wall. So that the ports for plugging in everything would be attached to the back of the trailer. do you think that is the best method? And if so, how would I mount the motherboard without screwing it into the actual trailer?

Also, where should I put the dvd drive? The most conveniant thing would to get a slot loading drive....but that is a stretch. Maybe the top front? So the loading tray would extend above the cab of the driver seat?

Where should the power supply go? I was wanting it to go on the rear of the trailer.

And I thought it would be cool to put a fan on the inner bottom of the trailer. Since it would be on wheels, there would be an inch or so for air flow. This would also make the trailer look cooler. Not having a large visible fan.

Alas, thanks for the help! If I get a better idea of what parts I am getting and where to put them. I will start making some sketches. then I will upload them to get your comments.
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Old 08-04-2009, 08:50 PM   #8
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Default Re: Building a custom pc

Quote:
Originally Posted by dirtbikerac View Post
you press the exhaust pipes down to start the machine. Maybe some tail lights or something with LED to show that the system is on.

Here is how you would setup the LED's.
Look at the picture of the motherboard.
Look at the top view, and look at the top right corner (By those purple things)
There you will see these plug in things, there are two reds, two blues etc.
That is where your power button cable and LED's would go.
Basically you would get a regular power switch, and if I was you, I would mount it like this.
Some trucks have those ice coolers up on the front of the trailer, I would make the power switch in one of those, nothing fancy, just the power button in the A\C thing. (You could even make a wheel a power button)
For the LED's you could mount them in the muffler, and just take the cable and pull it through the trailer to where they are plugged in (Same place as power switch)




Quote:
Originally Posted by dirtbikerac View Post
So, for the basics. Where should I place everything to make it all fit and be accessible? I was thinking that I would have the motherboard attached to the left inside wall. So that the ports for plugging in everything would be attached to the back of the trailer. do you think that is the best method? And if so, how would I mount the motherboard without screwing it into the actual trailer?
I agree that you should mount it on the left side, and you won't really be plugging anything into the expansion slots, so you wouldn't necessarily have to cut out holes for them, just for where you would plug in your mouse, keyboard, monitor cable, etc.
I think you would have to take a piece of aluminum, and raise it about 1/2 inch off of the left side, drill holes through that match your motherboard's mounting holes, and screw it in (Always use standoffs)


Quote:
Originally Posted by dirtbikerac View Post
Also, where should I put the dvd drive? The most conveniant thing would to get a slot loading drive....but that is a stretch. Maybe the top front? So the loading tray would extend above the cab of the driver seat?
I think a cool way to mount the DVD drive would be on it's side (I think some allow you to do that) and mount it in the back of the trailer where the trailer doors open.
I think it would be really cool if you were able to mount it so that the trailer doors open and close, and it looks cool, but when you open the trailer door the DVD drive would be there (I think that's cool)



Quote:
Originally Posted by dirtbikerac View Post
Where should the power supply go? I was wanting it to go on the rear of the trailer.
Since the back is taken by the motherboard and DVD drive (The DVD drive thing would be totally cool, you should mount the Power Supply up front, and have the cables going to the back of the trailer where all your stuff is. (This would make it look clean from outside)



Quote:
Originally Posted by dirtbikerac View Post
And I thought it would be cool to put a fan on the inner bottom of the trailer. Since it would be on wheels, there would be an inch or so for air flow. This would also make the trailer look cooler. Not having a large visible fan.

One inch wouldn't really cut it, the top would be the best spot, but then again that would ruin the look. If you could make it so that the cab is detachable from the trailer, you could mount the fan up front, or make the cab at a 90 degree angle allowing the fan maximum airflow.
As for the fan sucking in, you could just mount it on the bottom, as long as it can suck air in.


To mount the hard drive I guess you would use the same technique as the motherboard.
Good luck with the project!
Post plenty of pics, and ask many questions!
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Old 08-04-2009, 09:40 PM   #9
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Default Re: Building a custom pc

With the LEDs, sounds simple enough.

And mounting the motherboard sounds doable. I would just need holes for the usb ports, and video, audio, keyboard, mouse.

Mounting the DVD drive on the rear sounds sweet. With the door opening concealing the drive and then opening the door to show the dvd drive. But, how would I hinge the door on? Keep the door closed? How would I mount the dvd drive in place? I don't think it has to be mounted as carefully as say the hdd or motherboard, as long as the dvd drive can't move, right?

If you could explain how the power supply would work in the front. Would the power supply fan be exposed? How would I plug in the cable, if the fan is blowing out? If it is blowing in, it would just be blowing hot air in, right? If I had it blowing in, would I just have the power cable running from the front of the truck to the rear?

How should I make the trailer open? Like a normal pc case, the case has a frame, with detachable sides and top. Do you think a removable roof would be good enough? Or side? How would I make them detachable, but still sturdy when in place?

Also, what do you think the dimensions of the trailer should be? I was thinking tallest item would be the motherboard, which I believe was about 9". And wide enough for everything else.

Anyways, I think I will go over to a local computer store and look for some used parts. I plan on finding that tiny motherboard, some cheap laptop ram, and finding compatible parts for the motherboard.

Anyways, thanks again! Hopefully with your help, help of my family (and their wallet), I can build something I will keep forever. When I go to college, everyone will be jealous! hahahaha!
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Old 08-04-2009, 10:04 PM   #10
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Default Re: Building a custom pc

Quote:
Originally Posted by dirtbikerac View Post
With the LEDs, sounds simple enough.

And mounting the motherboard sounds doable. I would just need holes for the usb ports, and video, audio, keyboard, mouse.

Mounting the DVD drive on the rear sounds sweet. With the door opening concealing the drive and then opening the door to show the dvd drive. But, how would I hinge the door on? Keep the door closed? How would I mount the dvd drive in place? I don't think it has to be mounted as carefully as say the hdd or motherboard, as long as the dvd drive can't move, right?

If you could explain how the power supply would work in the front. Would the power supply fan be exposed? How would I plug in the cable, if the fan is blowing out? If it is blowing in, it would just be blowing hot air in, right? If I had it blowing in, would I just have the power cable running from the front of the truck to the rear?

How should I make the trailer open? Like a normal pc case, the case has a frame, with detachable sides and top. Do you think a removable roof would be good enough? Or side? How would I make them detachable, but still sturdy when in place?

Also, what do you think the dimensions of the trailer should be? I was thinking tallest item would be the motherboard, which I believe was about 9". And wide enough for everything else.

Anyways, I think I will go over to a local computer store and look for some used parts. I plan on finding that tiny motherboard, some cheap laptop ram, and finding compatible parts for the motherboard.

Anyways, thanks again! Hopefully with your help, help of my family (and their wallet), I can build something I will keep forever. When I go to college, everyone will be jealous! hahahaha!
Yeah the doors should be able to open and close, how, I have no clue, your project!
Yeah it doesn't have to be mounted perfectly, just so it is sturdy and that it won't vibrate.
I think it would be best for the top to pop off, as the other sides have something connected to it. You could use magnets to hold them in place.
If you're going to use that computer in college, ditch those parts, those are basically the cheapest of the cheap. The fan sucks air out, it would work just how a normal power supply works.
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