posted May 17, 2012, 9:47 AM by Andrew Stock   [ updated May 17, 2012, 9:47 AM ]
Sometimes, inspiration hits you like a truck. I was fiddling with my case last night thinking of what kind of creative thing I could do with my pump and reservoir placement to really make this case stand out. I wasn't coming up with anything, and my cat started attacking one of our leather chairs... so I put down the reservoir to go swat the cat, and when I came back, I noticed I had set the reservoir in the center of the open front of my case where all the drives and such usually reside. Then it hit me... that would be an awesome place to showcase the reservoir, which is one of the more 'artsy' parts of my loop right now. 

I thought about it more last night, and how I could tweak it to really show it off well. I present to you, my 'mad microsoft paint skills' version of the Front-Reservoir concept:

So, some 'splainin is probably due. What I was thinking, was I could mount the reservoir standing up in the front of the case where all the 5 1/4" bays are. I would then put a piece of semi-translucent blue acrylic as an 'enclosure' of sorts around the reservoir, in a half cylinder, leaving maybe an inch of open air around the reservoir. I would use LED or cold cathodes to light the acrylic so it gives off a tron-like glow, then sandwich the acrylic in black aluminum that matches the rest of the case, leaving only the edges exposed for light to shine through. I was also thinking I could cut a small slit directly behind the reservoir, so that light shines through illuminating the reservoir (that dark blue line running through the reservoir.The right hand part of the image shows a 'close up' of what the aluminum-sandwiched-acrylic would look like. 

I'm going to try and mock this up in sketchup tonight I think... or maybe just fabricate a cheap version to see if I like how it looks in real life, since I already have the case and reservoir. My one concern is the loss of a majority of my front bays... I need room for three or four hard drives (SSD for OS, two 2TB drives in RAID1 for storage), so I do need some kinda place to put my drives. With the drive racks at the bottom of the case gone, that leaves precious few options. I did buy a Lian-Li drive enclosure that turns three 5 1/4 bays into four hard drive rack slots, too... but I think my RES-200 might be too tall for that. I was considering ditching my optical drive for this build, since I cannot remember the last time I put a CD/DVD in it... I can always just hook up a USB3/eSATA optical drive in the rare case I need it...

Hmm... maybe if I cut through the midplate and put the reservoir down a few inches... I like where this is going. Lots of dremel dust and exploded cutting wheels in my future... :D