Project: G5 Case mod

matteos

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Well, all the Apple puns have taken since this is a pretty common mod, however I'm going to post my worklog anyway even though it's been done before. Modding G5 case to fit an ATX PC. I don't want this to look like an Apple, Apple logos must die a painful death. Will either paint, powder coat or do some sort of brushed look to case. Add a window too, that is the plan. Mod may take some time but I am not in a rush to finish as my current PC is quite happy in its Antec 900.

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That case is a little ugly although very functional.
Here is what I've done so far
Unrivet and mod an el cheapo raidmax ($30)case for motherboard and back panel
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Steel, wears down the dremel wheel!
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Test fit of old mobo and tray in G5
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Begininning custom back plate
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Start Sleeving PSU
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Cut hole in top shelf for PSU
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... But not enough. Kind of screwed that up by using a hole saw at the start to make the cutting easier, but hole saw broke (A tooth came out of alingment). Now the whole thing looks wonky. Will have to redo
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More to come
 

matteos

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Neatening up the hole for the PSU a little, still have to file


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removing metal from around the back plate of raidmax case. I just need the slots for the PCI cards really.
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This part needs to go too.

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Start custom back plate, I wish I'd used steel instead of aluminum, steel is so easy to cut with a dremel. Going to paint this anyway
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Final cut out for backplate, still needs neatening up, pretty happy with the way it turned out, never used a dremel (or in this case a $25 big lots rotary tool) before, didn't think I'd get a decent fan hole with the dremel, but didn't want to spend $30 on the 4" hole saw.
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Hack up case, used a hand saw for a lot of it till the blade broke, easy to cut through
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Done
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Test fit
 
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matteos

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I since dropped the case down two flights of concrete stairs, whoops. Everything was ok except side panel got a little beat up, this case is pretty tough. I will be powder coating it now though. I'm not sure whether to powder coat all of it in black or just the sides and leave the middle in the silver anodized aluminum.
 

matteos

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img20110605115130.jpg


Anyone who has ever worked with this case will agree it is a bugger to take apart, wouldn't be surprised if Apple had some sort of mini impact wrench to put the Torx head bolts on :rolleyes:
Everything seems over engineered, and engineered in a way to make it difficult.
Apple does not want you to change this case.

Still I have it apart in its components, I have to cut a window in the messed up side panel before I can powdercoat and start assembling. My idea is to use a small hole saw to cut rounded corners and then join them by cutting a straight line between using a saw... The material is 3mm thick aluminum, I don't fancy cutting it with a dremel, but loathe to buy another powertool for just one thing, if anyone has an opinion I'd be happy to hear it. Would a hand saw be enough to cut through? I've heard oven cleaner is good for removing the anodized layer, so I will probably do this before I cut, I can experiment on the section I will remove.
 

schizrade

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You dropped it down some stairs? ROFL, that was random.

Tag for updates.
 

matteos

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Lol, yeah, I had it in my garage as the missus gets annoyed with all my random tech lying around, as I got to the top flight of stairs to the appartment I dropped it.

Pretty bad feeling hearing it bounce down the stairs since I'd spent at least 12 hours on this thing so far. Thankfully it survived with little damage except the side panel.
 

matteos

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were you able to use a 120mm rear fan?

Yeah it fits great, I haven't finished the backpanel though, have to mod some aluminum u channel pieces to make the I/O panel and PCI cards indent like they do on most atx cases, this will also give more room for the exhaust fan.
 

matteos

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I refreshed my Antec 900 a little, finished sleeving the PSU except 3 wires on the 24 pin connector (ran out of sleeving, will get some more
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The back fan I need to replace with one matching the fronts, so I didn't sleeve
 

antok86

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i started gutting and cutting mine....were you able to mount a mobo tray in there? if so how were you able to?
 

antok86

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this is what i got so far.. i cut a hole in the back now im trying to figure out the placement.
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my case has a dual 5.25 and some crap thats riveted in the bottom. its going to be a pain to get the screws off to have this this on its bare frame to rivet out that shit.
 

matteos

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looking good, you have the mac pro rather than the G5 so the layout is slightly different.

Everything on my case came out easy except on the G5 there are 3 screw thingys above the hard drives that attached the hard drives to the case, I made the mistake of snapping those off like the motherboard standoffs (motherboard standoffs come off real easy just snap them off with a pair of pliers) However these three screw things don't, I snapped them off but they caused some indentation and flaws to the top of the case, kind of mild and I may remove that part for a blowhole still, but best to cut them off with a dremel if you don't want them there. I haven't had a chance to work on mine further and wont for at least a couple of weeks.

I don't remember there being any rivets holding the mac case together, the case is kind of bolted together with torx head screws, so you just need the correct screwdriver for that, my case was almost completely gutted when I got it though.
Attaching the mobo tray I intend to use jb weld and then some u channel aluminum or aluminum strips to get the correct space, haven't yet figured out exactly what, need to see how far the mobo tray will be off the side of the case when I have fitted the back panel correctly.
 

W.Feather

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looks good man, i've been trying to find a cheap G5/Mac Pro case locally to do something like this but no luck...ill be watching this for sure
 

antok86

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what i got done today....man trying to make clean straight cuts are a bitch. i need to clean it up a bit. tried to make a place from a piece of aluminum instead. we will see which i go with
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Warrior

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Have you looked into the power lights on the case?... I know for a fact they are a pain to mod into a PC.... Oh, and BTW, dont burn them out.
 

matteos

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what i got done today....man trying to make clean straight cuts are a bitch. i need to clean it up a bit. tried to make a place from a piece of aluminum instead. we will see which i go with
74705a93.jpg

Yeah, its best to go on a lower setting on the dremel and take your time, then file to get straight lines. It took me all day to do the back panel. It's mostly straight but not perfect.

You can probably neaten it up to look fine, any flaws will most likely get covered up with paint or if they are bad use some JBWeld. Worse case scenario is you just chop that top left section around the latch out.


Have you looked into the power lights on the case?... I know for a fact they are a pain to mod into a PC.... Oh, and BTW, dont burn them out.

My front panel thing is so stripped down there is just a mini pcb board with three wires for the power button, no usb ports or anything. I have the front panel from another case that I think I will try and use, don't know about how useful the firewire port is to me, wish it was another usb.
I'm really itching to do more, but I just don't have any time right now.
 
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