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Water Block Design / Construction Building your own block? Need info on designing one? Heres where to do it

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Unread 11-25-2002, 08:15 PM   #1
Antimatter
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pros/cons of various waterblock designs

hello everyone,
im rather new around here. i have been looking into watercooling for a while, but i have yet to buy/build a system. due to lack of money, i want to build as much as possible

i have been looking into building an amd waterblock. i have a drill press and some jig saws and a dremmel and stuff. i am exploring around various waterblock designs.

the #rotor model seems pretty cool, and not to difficult to make. also, the spiral ones seem pretty good and not so hard. i was woundering if anyone has had any experience with lots of kinds of water blocks and would like to share it with me .

i am looking to make a block or two (or three or four depending on how fun it is ) for a new computer. i am looking for highest possible performance while still being doable by someone who does not have a lot of skill at making stuff like this.

also, i would be interested to hear any general advice or whatever anyone has to say... yea... anyway, thanks in advance.
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Unread 11-25-2002, 09:37 PM   #2
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You might start by looking at what's available, and try to categorize them.

Swiftech is a flat-plate design.

DangerDen is a maze type.

Spiral is a slightly more elaborate maze type

Innovatech is in a category of its own.
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Unread 11-26-2002, 06:14 PM   #3
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this is somewhat of a different topic, but i didnt want to make a whole new thread.
where you guys get copper bars? i have been looking around online and it seems to be pretty difficult to find a company that will sell less than 50 lb of copper bars. this is kind of expensive... thanks.
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Unread 11-27-2002, 05:46 AM   #4
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I dunno for online shops, but you can always try to go to the local machine shop and ask them for some copper. They are not very fond to sell their stuff but when you tell them what a weirdo application you're trying to make... Also, they usually have leftovers you can usually use.
There also are places (scrapyards) collecting the metals for recycling. I bought some copper in such a place. No, it's not like digging in the dirt , they usually have the metals collected and sorted in, you just pick your pieces, they put in onto the scale, pay per kilo, off you go...

Dunno if that is doable in your place, but you can always try...

Good luck!
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Unread 11-27-2002, 07:51 AM   #5
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DangerDen also sells them online.
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Unread 11-27-2002, 08:53 AM   #6
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dunno if it is that expensive

my copper bar was 18ft = 27kg (+/- 60lbs) = 106€/$ (cut into 3 pieces)

i couldn't buy a swiftech block for that money
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Unread 11-27-2002, 09:13 AM   #7
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onlinemetals.com is a great source

ebay.com is another great source

and look around the various forums classified, you bound to find something eventually (ebay is the best though, got 100 bucks worth for 25, shipped)
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Unread 11-27-2002, 12:16 PM   #8
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onlinemetals.com seems really good.

thanks guys! also, im trying to figure out what size of copper to buy. i was thinking either 1/4" x 2.5" or 1/2" x 12.5".

im looking at doing a simple block, probably either spiral or #rotor.

it looks like 1/4 is better if i am drilling both sides, where as 1/2 is better if i am only drilling one side. what is everyone else using? thanks.
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Unread 11-27-2002, 08:25 PM   #9
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well, for my 45Degrees block (design not yet posteD0 I'm gett 3/8 CU and machining it down to 1/4, and making3/16 inch deep paths.

you shold get 2 1/4 inch pieces and drill both. drill the bottom to 3/16 inchs in.

oh, you only need 2 inch wide material. if you put the mountin holes 1/4 an inch from the top of the block (well, outer edge closest to top of case) this will allow you to miss that ridge n the CPU socket.
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Unread 11-28-2002, 02:46 PM   #10
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allright, i think i have decided on a design.

i like both the #rotor designs and the sprial design, so i am going to sort of combine both of them. the center of the cpu block is made using the #rotor method, and the rest is a spiral made with a drill press. i will dremel down the corners after drilling the holes. these are kind of rough picturs...

these will probably be made using 2" x 1.5" copper bars
the gpu block is attached to my gf4 4200 using the 4 little holes next to the chip, not the ones that the stock heat sink is mounted on (is this a good idea?)

CPU 2"x3.5"

GPU 1.5"x1.5"


any thoughts? i put up a post in the general watercooling forum about the rest of the setup here
thanks
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Unread 11-28-2002, 04:13 PM   #11
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What thickness of the copper will there be? You'll have lots of troubles dremelling the center piece in such a small area without damaging the 'wall' created with drill press. The diameter of the dremel discs won't let you cut deep enough. :shrug:

Cheers!
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Unread 11-29-2002, 12:16 AM   #12
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ok, you have to make it 3 inchs by 2 inches for the CPU otherwise, you're going to have part of the block sitting on the white plastic part of the socket , which is raised slithgly hihger than the CPU core. (loook at any heatsink, there is a recess milled in the prvent the block from being proped of at a incorrect angle)

if you want further example, here:

youu should see the problem...
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Unread 11-29-2002, 02:23 AM   #13
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well. i thought about it some more, and went ahead and ordered some metal. i am planning to make a similar design (spiral) to the waterblock picts i posted before.

Puzzdre: yea, i hadnt really though about that... im just gonna forget those - i dont think that they will help all that much anyway.

because of my total lack of skill and lack of experience in doing stuff like this, i decided to drill all the way througha 1/4" copper sheet, and then glue/solder on a 1/4" copper top and 1/8" copper bottom. i was thinking of using arctic silver adhesive to glue these together, anyone done this? it seems like i might get better thermal conductivity than with solder.

so anyway, i hope it all works out.

oh, i decided to make some ramsinks too for my video card. im gonna get some of the 1/8" bar and cut it into little ram-sized bits and then drill holes in it and put 1/8" copper rods through them, solder/arcticsilver glue like 8 of them on and then sand the bottom down. seems like it should have some pretty good surface area. sound like a good idea? (if not, i spend a whole of three dollars on the metal rods )

Nick C: i see about the block problem with the zif socket. i ordered 2 1/2 stuff anyway, just to make sure i have enough. i will be careful to take that into consideration though - it would really suck to forget and then have your block not fit.

anyway, thanks for the input everyone.
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Unread 11-29-2002, 05:07 AM   #14
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Solder them or bolt them(with goop for seal), AS/A is'nt designed to be waterproof. I'd definatley solder the bottom plate whatever though...

I'm surprised nobodys done a Cathar style block, using two 1/4 peices and cutting grooves with a Dremel. abit like a block Volenti made from two thin bits except with Cathar style fins instead of dual channels...
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Unread 11-29-2002, 09:16 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally posted by Puzzdre
What thickness of the copper will there be? You'll have lots of troubles dremelling the center piece in such a small area without damaging the 'wall' created with drill press. The diameter of the dremel discs won't let you cut deep enough. :shrug:

Cheers!
Here's another idea that I used when i was making blocks with a drill press.......................
I bought a carbide cutter made by dremel(my Walmart here carries them). after drilling all of the holes,I put the carbide cutter in the chuck off the drill press and put the block that I want to cut in a vise(mine came with a little cheapo 3" vise), then I moved the adjustable table up to match the end of the cutter with the depth of the predrilled holes and locked it,turned on the drill press on and carefully moved the vise on the adjustable table with block inside of it, and cut the areas that I needed to cut in order to join the holes together.
Its kind of hard to do somewhat(but with alittle practice you can almost attain a mill finish in your channels. and if youve got alot of holes to join, your wrists will kill you the next day, but it works. I even used this method to finish the outside diameter of the channels and it turned out pretty well.
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Unread 11-29-2002, 03:41 PM   #16
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Ahhhh, fellow hand CNC'er

I did the same thing, just with the mill bits (2 mm to be precise)... With block in the vice, I errr...'milled' it by hand, but I moved the vice on the table with one hand (vice was loosely attached with two bolts to the table) and went up and down with mill bit. The result is not so 'nice', but serves the purpose well...

pic is crappy, but...
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Unread 12-04-2002, 01:59 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally posted by Puzzdre
Ahhhh, fellow hand CNC'er

I did the same thing, just with the mill bits (2 mm to be precise)... With block in the vice, I errr...'milled' it by hand, but I moved the vice on the table with one hand (vice was loosely attached with two bolts to the table) and went up and down with mill bit. The result is not so 'nice', but serves the purpose well...

pic is crappy, but...
Yeah, back when I didnt have a CNC mill, I tried to use endmills in the chuck of the drill press, and found that it was easier for me to use a dremel Tungsten carbide bit so it wouldnt eat so much off when I goofed and had less of a chance of loosing a finger or 2.

Besides those damn dremel Tungsten carbide bits are virtually indestructable and they cut through just about anything. The only caviat with using them is when you try to tighten the chuck down too much on them to get a really good hold, they will tend to crack in half at higher than 1500 RPM's.
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Unread 12-04-2002, 03:21 PM   #18
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Yeah, I can hear you on that loosing fingers thingie...

All of them are fine (Thx to mr Upstairs!) and I'm pretty aware of the clear and present danger of messing with mill bits like that...Guess I'll have to buy a xy table soon, cos' till now I broke only one mill bit, but fortunately I was better dressed/secured than those NASA space guys with their stuff (oxygen excluded... ), even amused some children dressed like that with shield on my face and all, working on my block on the balcony...

It's really good to know that dremel Tung.carbide bits are good thing too, I'll do some research where to buy them here.

Thanx a lot for info (especially for thightening the chuck situation)!

Cheers!
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Unread 12-08-2002, 02:47 PM   #19
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How well would a good crossdrilled waterblock compare to comercial waterblocks e.g. maze3 or equivalent.
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Unread 12-08-2002, 09:04 PM   #20
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CNC: Computer Numerically Controlled
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Unread 12-12-2002, 08:52 PM   #21
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yay! my copper arrived! i got
1. 1' x 2.5" x .25 (1/4)"
1. 1' x 2.5" x .125 (1/8)"

i plan to use the 1/8" stuff as the base and have two layers of 1/4", the first one driled all the way through.

i thought about the cpu waterblock a little more and came up with this. seems easier to build and should perform about the same and use less copper. the 1/4" only extends as far as the spiral, so there should be a bit of only 1/8" sticking out on each side where it gets attached to the board.

the gpu waterblock uses the same design. this way i can just drill out the top all at once and then attach the base. its for a gf4 4200.

oooh. also, im thinking about getting a bigger pump. the one i currently have is 85gph @ 0 head, 2 ft. max head. kinda piteful. i was thinking via aqua 1300 (cheap!). will be running these two blocks and some kind of radiator. rad will probably be a bunch of copper tubing.

damn, i would be working on this right now but i have a latin midterm tomarrow
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Unread 12-12-2002, 08:52 PM   #22
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gpu block
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Unread 12-13-2002, 05:14 PM   #23
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Helo, i made a design for a waterblock too.
I would use it for a P4

what do you think of the shape?
Would it be a good performance?

Thx
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Unread 12-13-2002, 05:22 PM   #24
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looks kind of like my design . how are you planning on making it? also, it looks like some water might get caught around where the "b" is.

im no expert though.

you have a SICK 3dmark score for a 4200 man - i have one two and im at like 10550. you have a much faster cpu then me though. still.
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Unread 12-13-2002, 05:33 PM   #25
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I replaced the pic, is this better?

I have a fast cpu you know... and i did some overklocking...

But now its time for some old fashion home made watercooling

Why i think it will be a good block..???

It has large water flow lanes (strokes...) and the water is where my cpu is so... i will give it a try
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