Sign in to follow this  
Jeffrey Stephenson

[Scratch Build] â—„FLIGHTLINEâ–º - Completed

Recommended Posts

Hi, my name is Jeffrey Stephenson aka slipperyskip. I have been building custom computers as a hobby since 2002. You can see my work at HERE. I won my category in the 2009 Cooler Master contest (Mission) and placed third in 2011 (Usonian).

Flightline is an Art Deco sunburst design inspired by the architecture of the Wright Brothers Memorial at Kitty Hawk, North Carolina. The case consists of 167 pieces of hand-cut maple and mahogany veneer laid over a frame of lacewood and aircraft-grade birch plywood.

Final Photos:

151.jpg

157.jpg

155.jpg

162.jpg

161.jpg

044.JPG
Wright Brothers Memorial at Kitty Hawk, North Carolina

098.jpg

101.jpg

135.jpg

153.jpg

156.jpg

152.jpg

Project Log:

001.jpg
After a 20-hour work marathon I put together this chassis.


002.jpg
18 pieces of wood assembled onto a 1/16" sheet of birch plywood. The wood is all basswood (AKA lacewood) except the darker center piece. That is 1/4" thick maple.


003.jpg
Many of the boards, including the maple, are simply to stiffen the structure. 1/16" (1.6mm) plywood is easy to work with and keeps the project thin but needs a little help to prevent flexing.


004.jpg
Gigabyte offers three thin mini-ITX models This is the high-end H77 chipset version.


005.jpg
One of the tricks in keeping the board thin is use of laptop-style SODIMM memory


007.jpg
The thin mini-ITX I/O shield is exactly 1/2 the height of a standard ATX standard I/O shield. Some board makers include a full height shield to use in a standard chassis.


006.jpg
If you installed a "normal" heatsink onto a thin mini-ITX board it would no longer be thin. Intel makes this heatsink and AFAIK it is the only such product on the market.
008.jpg

009.jpg
The heatsink uses a blower instead of a more common axial fan. Blowers are typically noisier and less efficient but Intel spent some serious R&D on this bad boy. This is the first blower I have ever worked with that allows air intake from both sides simultaneously.


011.jpg

012.jpg

013.jpg

014.jpg
The backside will remain virgin. No screws, holes, paint. Nothing. This will match up to a similar surface in the cover.


015.jpg
Adding more material to complete the base structure.


016.jpg
Though it looks like a horizontal-stepped base it is actually made by building vertical steps.


017.jpg
I call them reversing pinwheel butt joints. Each layer reverses direction of the joints and cause them to stagger back and forth across each other. Engineered strength. Veneer will hide the crudeness of the butt joints.


020.jpg


021.jpg


025.jpg


026.jpg


027.jpg

030.jpg

035.jpg
1/16" x 1/32" mahogany strips hand-cut from sheet stock.

036.jpg
Some burl inlay work.


041.jpg
Snapshot of my veneering work space. 167 pieces to cut.


So after a crazy number of hours here are 70 pieces of veneer cut, glued and sanded.

043.jpg
It will look better when there is contrast between the different woods. Raw, sanded wood tends to be a bit dull.

Normally I would build a box and then apply veneer but maple is very difficult to work with (for me). I decided to veneer the sides first so I could bring much more clamping pressure to the surface. You gotta bring the pain.

I estimate this project to be at 65% complete...

045.jpg
I can't wait to start the wood finishing.


047.jpg
Adjusted the contrast to get some color into it.


046.jpg
Cut out the blower intake duct. Still have the back panel veneer to apply.


048.jpg
Framed up the blower inlet and fit it with mesh.

049.jpg

054.jpg
Just taking pictures of it while it has no finish. I didn't even brush off the sawdust for this shot.

058.jpg
Working on the rooftop vents. Five mesh screens.

059.jpg

060.jpg
Testing out the amber shellac and styling a shiny bit.

064.jpg

I estimate this project to be 80% complete.

065.jpg
Sanded back the tint leaving enough behind to get contrast.

066.jpg
Looking for a good compromise on the burl tint.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1.jpg
Almost finished with the vent. Around 30 pieces of maple veneer will cover the roof. I'm up to number 7.  :) 
2.jpg
Working on the top vent.
3.jpg
 
4.jpg
 
5.jpg
 
6.jpg
Working on the final bits....
7.jpg
Wired up the power switch that I positioned on the I/O plate right next to the power jack. Sleeved the power cable and the blower cable. Those are the only wires. :) 
8.jpg
The base is hollow and now painted.
9.jpg
Used aluminum paint on the rear framing and... 
10.jpg
...lava grey paint on the rest of the interior except....
11.jpg
...the back of the motherboard tray is left natural birch with a couple of coats of lacquer to protect it. I can't paint this piece because it slides directly against the interior of the cover. I can't veneer it either because the tolerances are too close.
12.jpg
Finished up the exhaust vents.
13.jpg
A sneak peek at the finished quilted maple
14.jpg

 

Thanks for looking! 

 

Link to video showing how the cover is removed.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

129.jpg

Found a tasty piece of mahogany and cut it to size. The piece is 1/32" (.8mm) thick.

130.jpg

131.jpg

Carved out the openings using my trusty Japanese razor knife.

132.jpg

133.jpg

Just showing off. Notice the distance to the edge on the audio ports. Those holes were carved not drilled.

134.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Sign in to follow this