bit-tech.net

Micke's DreamHack Modding Mania

Dragon head case

This mod was was kind of fun and rather different at the same time. My brother-in-law and I were having a bit of a two-man couch/beer party, and we started discussing 'handmade' things and shaping custom projects. Once I'd got the idea in my head I couldn't let it go, and so that's how my Dragon Head project came about. I love fantasy movies, and so that's why I chose to make a case based on the head of a Dragon.

I rounded up some hardware for it. The component list included an Abit NFM2 motherboard, an AMD Athlon 64 X2 4200+, 2GB of Crucial DDR2 memory, a Point of View GeForce 7950 GX2 and a 320GB Western Digital hard disk (RAID edition). Given the 'unconventional' housing I was about to create, I wanted a hard disk designed to operate 24/7 in intense environments!

I needed something that was going to be easy to shape - I chose 10cm thick Styrofoam sheets thinking that they'd be nice and easy to work with. Come the end of the project, little did I know that I would be substantially changing my opinion of how easy Styrofoam is to work with! This is a shorter version of the full worklog that you can find in the forums. It's definitely worth checking out if you find this teaser interesting!

Micke's DreamHack Modding Mania Dragon Head Micke's DreamHack Modding Mania Dragon Head
Using a carpet knife and a chef's knife I cut the rough shapes then used some sandpaper to shape it as I went along.

Micke's DreamHack Modding Mania Dragon Head Micke's DreamHack Modding Mania Dragon Head
Building up the various layers took a decent amount of time, but with the right cutting and sanding, I could see my project coming together. At this point, the result looks good, but you can't build a computer out of Styrofoam - I needed to make the case a bit more solid.

The answer is to use the Styrofoam as a mould for a polyester glue and fibreglass shell.

Micke's DreamHack Modding Mania Dragon Head Micke's DreamHack Modding Mania Dragon Head
However, the problem is that the glue will melt the foam, so I needed something to cover the Styrofoam before applying the glue. I used fast-hardening putty to cover it and then sanded it smooth before I started applying the fibreglass over the top to a thickness of about 1cm.

Micke's DreamHack Modding Mania Dragon Head Micke's DreamHack Modding Mania Dragon Head
Once I had finished applying the fibreglass, I could really start to see how the Dragon head was shaping up.