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[Worklog] The Briefcase Computer
#1
Title.

I've already started this project, so I'm about halfway done right now. The whole idea is taking a hard shell briefcase and modifying it to fit an entire computer in there. Monitor, keyboard, mouse and all. Maybe even speakers if I get adventurous, but that'll be a later addition after everything is already working.

Specs when complete:
CPU: Intel i5 4690T
MB: ASUS H97I-PLUS
GPU: MSI GTX 970
RAM: 2x8GB ADATA @ 1600MHz
SSD: Crucial BX100 250GB
PSU: Sparkle Power 500W Platinum
Monitor: Old Acer 20" 16:10
Keyboard: Ajazz backlit w/ metal base
Mouse: Ajazz Green Hornet 2000DPI 6-key

Final price: $1400
GPU and CPU are second-hand, but they're pretty much brand new. Also thses are CAD prices.

I'll post some pictures tomorrow of my current progress.
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#2
I bought two of these briefcases, since they were like $5 each at a thrift store:

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All the parts out of boxes(aside from the monitor):

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A close look at the unfinished bottom half of the case. As you can see, I removed the bottom shell and remade it in galvanized steel, since the original was far too shallow to hold all my parts. The motherboard will be under the bottom left square, the graphics card will be on top of the upper bar, with a 7-inch riser cable connecting it to the motherboard. The heatsink for the closed-loop CPU cooler will be on the middle square, which hasn't been cut out yet. It'll force air into the motherboard cover and out under the plate holding up the GPU. All the cables will run under the upper plate and into the motherboard cover. The SSD will sit on the upper plate in line with the PSU. If my measurements are correct, I should be able to strip down my monitor and it should fit perfectly in the top shell without any need for modification.

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And here's a pic with all the pieces taken out:

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#3
I like where this is going!
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#4
You guys are all crazy. Crazy I say!
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#5
The obvious thing to do is out-crazy us, then!

Also, while I'm sure it's obvious, I would definitely want to make sure all that metal is grounded.
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#6
(2015-05-12, 08:32:56 AM)hiigaran Wrote: The obvious thing to do is out-crazy us, then!

Also, while I'm sure it's obvious, I would definitely want to make sure all that metal is grounded.

All the metal will be coated with spray-on rubber sealant, so it shouldn't be any problem. I don't *need* to, since everything electronic won't be directly touching the metal, but it'll look better and be safer if I do. Plus, it'll make everything mostly air/watertight when I close it up.
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#7
(2015-05-12, 08:32:56 AM)hiigaran Wrote: The obvious thing to do is out-crazy us, then!
Give me the money and I won't disappoint Pinkiehappy
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#8
I've made a small revision to my design. As you can see in the fourth and fifth pictures, I was going to use two separate pieces(the smaller two) of metal for the motherboard and the CPU cooler. This is now scrapped and I've turned it into one single piece to house the motherboard, CPU cooler and all the wires from the PSU. This'll make the design less complicated, easier to work with and will give me the opportunity to make a access door directly above the motherboard, since I need to cut a hole out of the top for the CPU cooler anyway. It'll also make the front of the case stronger, plus it'll look better overall in my opinion.

I'd love to start working on said revision today, but unfortunately it's raining and my metal break is outside. Ajbemused
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#9
Is the intent for the mouse and keyboard to stow within the case for transportation?
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#10
(2015-05-13, 11:06:33 AM)Ruthalas Wrote: Is the intent for the mouse and keyboard to stow within the case for transportation?

Yep. The keyboard will rest above the plate that'll hold the graphics card and the SSD. The mouse will be underneath with the SSD.
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#11
Isn't this called a laptop?
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#12
(2015-05-16, 12:28:48 PM)pinormous Wrote: Isn't this called a laptop?

It could be. But a laptop cannot exchange parts(very few actually can, but some do). When I'm done with this, I'll be able to swap parts like any other desktop, so it'll last me for a lot longer than a laptop would. It'll be much more durable as well, given that it's built out of galvanized steel.
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#13
You know... with this setup... I can see someone doing a SteamPunk variant of this.
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#14
Sadly, I'm not that artistic. :( I will paint it all. Considering adding a bunch of game logos on the top side, like DotA2, DF, etc...
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#15
Little update on how it looks currently. The only things I have to do now are:

-drill holes to fasten the briefcase hinge frame
-fasten the access doors to either side
-install the monitor in the top half of the briefcase
-paint the top half and do a few more coats on the bottom half exterior

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SOON