Bloo Balls by Cheapskate


There are so many great mods on our forums - it's incredibly difficult at times to pick out a favourite. However, ever since I stumbled upon Cheapskate's (rather ghetto-rific) Bloo Balls mod for one of our previous Mod of the Month competitions, I knew I was looking at something fun, original and creative.

At the time, it was just a humble beginning of a project. But as it materialised, it turned into a great piece of work - both in what it was, and in what it wasn't. There's a lot of work that went into the project (over a year, in fact), a lot of things that went right and quite a few things that went wrong.

Cheapskate (aka Craig or Craigzilla) didn't take these failures to heart though, even when one cost him a motherboard. Instead, he took the lesson of try, try again - and created a great final project.

This log shows some of the highlights of the project, but it's not meant to replace the great read that's present in his worklog - I'd highly recommend that if you enjoy what you see here, that you take a look over the full story!

And so, I'm going turn the spotlight over to Craig to let him walk you through this glance of his project...

The humble beginning of Bloo.

The humble beginning of Bloo.


Hello, boys and girls! I’m Cheapskate. You would know me from the forums as the monkey picking its nose -- which is a pretty accurate portrait of both my mind set and real life appearance.

Gather around and I’ll tell you a story...

I was driven into custom case building by cheaply made cases with sharp edges. I decided after getting cut up particularly well that I needed something that wouldn’t kill me. I also wanted to see the flames when I burned up my hardware, so I started making plexiglass cases.

A trip through the forums will show you this isn't my first case - and I think I've learned a bit along the way. But this isn't about all of the different projects I've started (a much larger figure than the projects I've finished).

Today I get to tell you about Bloo Balls - the case, not the affliction. It was completed in a little over a year with a lot of help, inspiration, and prodding from the nice people here at bit-tech.

So now, let's get looking at the start of my project...

The very beginning

Bloo Balls started off its humble beginnings as a pile of junk - quite literally.

Bloo Balls by Cheapskate Introduction Bloo Balls by Cheapskate Introduction
Click to enlarge.

Projects like this don't start with a lot of money, especially my money. Though the plexiglass and aluminium L-channel for the mod were purchased, it didn't mean that I had a lot to waste. Most of the rest of the project was carefully acquired junk. For instance, the ball of wires? A bunch of gutted VCRs - they provided plenty of LED wires as well as a load of M3 screws.

Even the reservoir was recycled - and that's putting it lightly. I created it out of an old, dead lawnmower engine. The pump hides in the piston cylinder. Speaking of the piston, it almost became my first CPU block - fortunately, I figured my way out of that. But more on that later!

Bloo Balls by Cheapskate Introduction Bloo Balls by Cheapskate Introduction

The aluminium L-channel quickly and easily turned into a frame for the plexiglass with some careful riveting.