Bubbas Water Cooled HAF-922

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Bubbas Water Cooled HAF-922

Postby bubba » Thu Aug 27, 2009 8:15 am

Decided to finally do a full on water cooling setup. This won’t be a 100% water cooled system (yet) pesky bills. This is my journey thus far and wanted to share what I have learned.

The Case
Cooler Master HAF-922 midtower Review Linky
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The water cooling parts

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1x Swiftech Apogee GTZ Core i7 Water Block
1x Swiftech MCR320 Quiet Power 3x120mm Radiator
1x Swiftech MCP655-B 1/2in. Water Pump
1x Swiftech 1/4" BSPP x 1/2" Barb Chrome Plated Fitting (Set of 2)
1x Swiftech HydrX Coolant UV Reactive
1x Danger Den Fillport Res

Not show (slow mail)
1x Danger Den Delrin Drain Port
1x Danger Den Delrin Tee
3x Danger Den 1/2" shorty fittings

The Plan

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The plan is to take and cut about a 4”ish hole in the top of the case where the end of the 3x120 RAD ends up so it can breathe and not put hot air back into the case.
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With place for a breather hole, the control pod still will cover it, defeating the purpose of the hole. So to let the air out of the control pod we need to make another hole (or sets thereof). On the back of the pod there is a grill detail, I’m just going to make it functional by cutting out the flat areas between the ribs.

Misc thoughts and observations

Being this is the first true custom water cooled setup I have assembled I learned a couple things along the way.
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First and foremost, Home Depot and Lowes may be cheap for hose and fittings BUT just save up the extra for good fittings. In the above image is the smallest tee fitting I could find at Lowes or Home Depot by me. Next to it is a Danger Den delrin tee with stubby fittings. See how much smaller the DD tee is, but it was $15 with the 3 stubby fittings as compared to the 1.89 for the Lowes plastic tee. I did find a tee at a local pluming shop that was meant for a new plastic water line system that is out. Small like the Danger Den, but only $6.50. Thinking about picking up a couple for the hell of it, that and I need to work in a drain line somewhere.

Same goes for the tubing. I got a 10’ roll of 1/2” vinyl tubing from Home Depot to do the planning and what not. Yeah it works but I had several sections of tubing with bad spots in it. Suck it up and buy something like Masterkleer 7/16 x 5/8 for on the cheap at around .60/ft, Clearflex 60 at $1.60/ft (poor man’s Tygon) or Tygon if your wallet is a little heavy at $3/ft and up.
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Not all fittings are created equal. Left is a Danger Den 1/2” ‘Fatty’, right is a stock 1/2” Swiftech fitting. The fatty fitting has more throat, flow is the goal, research your fitting choice.

Where I’m at as of now…

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First I cut up the I/O pod slots, blow hole, and the hole for the fill port on the back. Then got in my head the case needed to be blacked out. So out came the painters tape to protect the outside finish and the rattle canning started. Yes I should have drilled the rivets, disassembled it and what not, I was lazy shot me, turned out descent though. Oh and no flack over the condition of the yard, wasn’t my yard.
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Well was humming along assembling stuff and realized that I hadn’t put CPU backing plate for the block on the board. So on lunch I pull the board and put the block on and start leak testing.
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Shot form the top before I put the I/O pod back on. Yes the blow hole looks like a beaver gnawed it out, didn't feel like dropping $30 on a hole saw to make 1 hole that was going to be covered. If this becomes habit, then I'll drop the coin.

I'll take some more pics at lunch and post them up.
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Re: Bubbas Water Cooled HAF-922

Postby Skippman » Thu Aug 27, 2009 10:29 am

Looking good so far my brother! :supz:
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Re: Bubbas Water Cooled HAF-922

Postby bubba » Thu Aug 27, 2009 11:59 am

well... lunch didn't go as planned. The CPU backing plate cut out on the HAF 922 mobo tray is off just slightly for the Intel DX58SO, so that meant the whole works had to come out, to do that the two fans on the RAD had to come out. Well got the board out and the GTZ i7 block mounted. Then I realized that I left my funnel at home so no since in getting in a rush so I got some food off the lunch truck that comes by my work.

here is a pic of that instead LOL in the morning I get it all back together and leak tested.

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Re: Bubbas Water Cooled HAF-922

Postby KnightRid » Fri Aug 28, 2009 6:50 am

Go to harbor Freight and get hole saw kits! I picked up a small and large set for under $10 TOTAL! Even if you can only use them twice, they paid for themselves!

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Re: Bubbas Water Cooled HAF-922

Postby bubba » Fri Aug 28, 2009 7:23 am

Did the leak test this morning, yeah there was a couple :axe: made a mess of the table.

Currently its humming away bleeding off air bubbles. I'll run it a day so like this to get most the air out before I run the system.
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Re: Bubbas Water Cooled HAF-922

Postby InspectahACE » Fri Aug 28, 2009 2:31 pm

Looking good dude..did you paint the interior without taking it apart(rivets an such)? or did you just paint over them? Just wondering as I'm bout to paint my HAF. I know redoing the rivets without painting over them would be ideal, but until I get a rivet gun,(and whether it would matter on the look), the paintjob is on hold :(
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Re: Bubbas Water Cooled HAF-922

Postby Sporg » Fri Aug 28, 2009 8:53 pm

Looking good, Bubba. Before everything is all together you could cut out a hole on the MB tray. Makes for easy install/removal of those pesky back planes. I also like the layout and placement, looking good!
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Re: Bubbas Water Cooled HAF-922

Postby bubba » Sat Aug 29, 2009 2:36 pm

InspectahACE wrote:Looking good dude..did you paint the interior without taking it apart(rivets an such)? or did you just paint over them? Just wondering as I'm bout to paint my HAF. I know redoing the rivets without painting over them would be ideal, but until I get a rivet gun,(and whether it would matter on the look), the paintjob is on hold :(


I painted the case frame fully assembled. I was being lazy, and didn't really feel like drilling out all the rivets. I did take the time to mask of the top and front panel to keep over spray off of it on the off chance the Rustoleum flat black didn't match.

If you clean it off real good, and take the time between LIGHT coats it will be ok, for the best looking paint job it has to be taken apart.

Sporg wrote:Looking good, Bubba. Before everything is all together you could cut out a hole on the MB tray. Makes for easy install/removal of those pesky back planes. I also like the layout and placement, looking good!

When the task this was all built for is done I'm going to do just that :) There is a hole there already, it lacks about 1/2 - 3/4" from allowing access to the bottom two mount points.
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Re: Bubbas Water Cooled HAF-922

Postby InspectahACE » Sat Aug 29, 2009 6:46 pm

Cool.. yea I was planning on masking every vent so nothing went outside of the case. I just know I'd be buying the rivet gun just for this. Which to me, isn't a bad thing, but if it's only going to be used only once then I don't see the point in getting one. I could be real jerk and just put little stickers that are similar in size on them lol...I hate the cut out hole on these HAF's. I have the same issue with it being a tad off the bottom cooler mounts..I'm not fond of messing with original designs but I might make an exception..I don't see many enjoying having to take everything out to replace teh cooler..or having to remove it all to just add more ram or upgrade (like I have to with the V10)
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Re: Bubbas Water Cooled HAF-922

Postby bubba » Sat Aug 29, 2009 7:48 pm

Don't do just the vents, tape off everything you don't want touched. Paint over spray has no mind
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Re: Bubbas Water Cooled HAF-922

Postby InspectahACE » Sun Aug 30, 2009 5:19 am

Good point :) ...I just noticed you mentioned earlier that you didn't drill the rivets, and here I am asking you about it(because I didn't read everything) :oops: My apologies dude
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Re: Bubbas Water Cooled HAF-922

Postby skier » Sun Aug 30, 2009 4:41 pm

InspectahACE wrote:I just know I'd be buying the rivet gun just for this. Which to me, isn't a bad thing, but if it's only going to be used only once then I don't see the point in getting one.


we have three different rivet guns i think, one or two sizes(each one has four tips you can swap between) they dont get used TOO often, but when they're needed, boy are they nice, mostly use them for autobody stuff, some parts on our lawn mower, and my recent case mod(almost done, just now decided to pull the mobo tray to make holes for backplate screws(prolly just drill holes more than big enough to fit a screw driver) lol )

good luck with the leak testing, hope ya didn't get any bum parts
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Re: Bubbas Water Cooled HAF-922

Postby bubba » Mon Aug 31, 2009 11:27 am

I fired up the system today and put it under a load. After about 20 minutes setting at 3.5ghz and a nice cool 51*C a very small leak formed :evil: at the block. It looks like it was from the inlet fitting.

Glad I was continuously watching it as it heated up, otherwise I'd be way more pissed off then I am now :?

I'll pull it all apart tonight/tomorrow and try again ](*,)
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Re: Bubbas Water Cooled HAF-922

Postby Skippman » Mon Aug 31, 2009 2:41 pm

I'm beginning to think Swiftech isn't the company it used to be. [-X
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Re: Bubbas Water Cooled HAF-922

Postby bubba » Mon Aug 31, 2009 7:22 pm

I ran the loop for 48 hours prior to running the system with it on it and not one drop, but that was with no heat from the CPU.

Think the O-Ring didn't seat right, or I didn't get it fully tightened. I didn't go to nutty as its Delrin top so I was afraid of stripping the port. Once I get it drained I'm going to yank the fitting and give the port and the O-Ring a once over.

Like I said it was very small and only showed up after the system heated up.
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Re: Bubbas Water Cooled HAF-922

Postby Sporg » Mon Aug 31, 2009 8:29 pm

I'm a tool, I forgot this case had a hole cut in the MB tray already. Bubba even posted a nice pic of it... Someone slap me in the face with a giant tube of bologna.

Glad you found your leak before anything was damaged!
Last edited by Sporg on Thu Sep 03, 2009 8:21 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Bubbas Water Cooled HAF-922

Postby bubba » Tue Sep 01, 2009 6:20 am

This morning before I tore into it I cleaned up the area and fired up the system again this time watching the problem area the whole time.

The leak is at the fitting, but not at the block like I had thought, but the tubing and fitting. I have the hose clamp tight, so I'm thinking I got it to tight and its damaged the tubing. Now I have to drain the system and redo the connection.
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Re: Bubbas Water Cooled HAF-922

Postby bubba » Sun Sep 06, 2009 8:52 pm

After redoing the tube to fitting (a couple times) it was leaking from two places. There was a hair line cut in the o-ring on the fitting. Swapped that out and got the hose clamp to play nice NO LEAKS \:D/

Only thing I may change with it is I need to take an couple inches out of the T-line to remove the droop, other then that I'm happy with it.

now for the pics

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Pump mount. each bolt consists of 1/4-20 hex bolt, 2x 1/4 grade 8 flat washer (keeps it centered in the drive cage slot), 1/4 fender washer, 1/4-20 nut.
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holy snug fit batman
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Looking through the front at the rad fittings
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Through the front and down at the tubes and end of the DVD
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I'll have some temps in a couple days, I did manage to break 4Ghz but after about 28-29 minutes of prime95 (about the time it switches to the second test) it pukes with a mem error. So I'm blaming the Value RAM I'm running, but it hums along at 3.8Ghz with out a hiccup, nice and cool to :mrgreen:

so was it worth the $250-300..... oh yeah... oh so quiet and running really cool.
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Re: Bubbas Water Cooled HAF-922

Postby InspectahACE » Sun Sep 06, 2009 10:27 pm

Looking very good there dude
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Re: Bubbas Water Cooled HAF-922

Postby Skippman » Mon Sep 07, 2009 6:02 am

Looking good! Can't see where your t-line is. I'd probably shorten up some of those hose runs but 4.0G is hard to beat speed wise. Very nice!
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