• Welcome to TechPowerUp Forums, Guest! Please check out our forum guidelines for info related to our community.

Watercooling Gone Wild: Overly Expensive Noob Edition

crazyeyesreaper

Chief Broken Rig
Staff member
Joined
Mar 25, 2009
Messages
9,077 (2.57/day)
Likes
3,962
Location
04578
#1
logo.jpg
I would like to take a moment and thank EKWB with all the help they have provided in regards to getting this build off the ground by providing fittings, coolant and so much more.

Before I forget a big thank you to my local machinist Tony for his work on custom brackets and any fabrication I needed done.

Also a big shout out to @VSG for answering a metric shit ton of question considering how long I have been out of the loop when it comes to building a custom water.

Now with that out of the way, It has been nearly a decade since I last messed with water cooling. The last time was back when the Phenom II series were still viable options. Suffice to say, its been a long time and now everyone i doing hard tubing and I just don't have the time for that. So the premise of this build was to get a hard tubing look, without the maintenance issues. Keep in mind this is not a full system loop but instead is an over glorified ridiculously expensive CPU loop. Why? Because I can; Do I need more justification than that? Nope I don't think so. Without further delay lets take this adventure together and see where it leads.

The system specifications for this build:
CASE: Thermaltake Core P3 tempered glass
PSU: Zalman 1000w 80 - Plus Gold
CPU: Intel i7 8700k
MOBO: MSI Z370 Gaming Pro Carbon AC
RAM: Crucial Ballistix 3466 MHz 32GB
GPU: MSI GTX 1080 Ti Gaming
SSD: 250 GB 960 EVO M.2
SSD: 512 GB Plextor
SSD: 1 TB Sandisk Extreme
HDD: 3 TB Toshiba x2

Design Mockup:
water-loop.jpg

Vomit on your screen? Not my problem. Is the planning short sighted and full of holes? You bet. Cheers for just winging it :toast: (note to all the boys and girls out there taking a bunch of expensive parts and hoping it all fits together probably not the best idea.

Parts:
Fittings: Various EKWB ACF fittings in Nickel finish
Radiator: Black Ice Nemesis 360 mm Radiator
Pump/Res: Swiftech Maelstrom D5 x100
Fans: Be Quiet! Silent Wings 3 1450 RPM PWM
CPU Block: Swiftech Apogee XL2
parts1.jpg parts2.jpg
 
Last edited:

crazyeyesreaper

Chief Broken Rig
Staff member
Joined
Mar 25, 2009
Messages
9,077 (2.57/day)
Likes
3,962
Location
04578
#2
The fun that is mocking up the layout only to realize nothing fits as intended.

At first the Maelstrom D5 x100 with its default bracket could not be mounted to the radiator. This is due to the fact the holes would not line up. So a quick trip to see Tony my local machinist and I had some custom aluminum brackets made. $15 well spent.
1529341325634.JPEG 1531162067165.JPEG 1531162098210.JPEG 1531162117134.JPEG

However after getting everything mocked up a new problem arose the side panel would not fit due to the limited orientation of the Maelstrom D5. It can only be set up one way as configured. Meaning the fittings would not clear the Tempered glass side panel. Swiftech did not in my opinion take enough time when designing their brackets. The three cut outs could have been done in a way to allow for more mounting options instead they do not lineup making that impossible. Another trip to see Tony and the brackets are now actually usable.
1531266645660.JPEG 1531331902330.JPEG 1531331916401.JPEG 1531331928565.JPEG
 
Last edited:

crazyeyesreaper

Chief Broken Rig
Staff member
Joined
Mar 25, 2009
Messages
9,077 (2.57/day)
Likes
3,962
Location
04578
#3
This kids is why you don't use dyes no matter what.

After just 3 months with a red dye the block was filty and completely clogged up. The tubing is heavily stained and generally even after cleaning the block its still gunked up. Finishes on blocks do not like acids so using vinegar to break up the dye and clean the block is out of the question unless you want to risk damage to the finish. Overall moral of the story just say no to included water cooling dye kits. It was far worse than the images show thats after 3 hours of scrubbing with a tooth brush even still a large amount of gunk is stuck between the fins.

1531343716659.JPEG 1531344867846.JPEG scv_15313437698451691788390.jpg scv_15313437883621016803273.jpg

Even if I reused this block I ran into a different issue the G1/4" threads are not actually G1/4" The EK ACF fittings are not compatible they will cross thread and or destroy the threads. So I have had to order a new block. Sometimes life just likes to kick you when your down. Still the rough layout looks good next is to figure out a way to secure the tubing so it remains straight and true. Likely going to use a 5/8 wire clamp attached to the radiator and painted black. Time will tell.
1531352236488.JPEG
 
Last edited:

crazyeyesreaper

Chief Broken Rig
Staff member
Joined
Mar 25, 2009
Messages
9,077 (2.57/day)
Likes
3,962
Location
04578
#5
Have you considered using Denture Cleaning Tablets to Clean and flush the Loop :)
The block etc came from an AIO swiftech Prestige that i was stealing parts from however it turns out the Swiftech Apogee XL2 has improper threads. While they are listed as G1/4" they will not accept any other fittings than swiftech's meaning my EK ACF fittings would not work without destroying or rethreading the block. As such I just ordered a new replacement block and will clean this one later and rebuild the 240mm Prestige kit it came from.
 

crazyeyesreaper

Chief Broken Rig
Staff member
Joined
Mar 25, 2009
Messages
9,077 (2.57/day)
Likes
3,962
Location
04578
#6
Did some more tinkering with the layout and picked up some black wire C clamps to hold the tubing in place along the radiator. Once the CPU block is in it should be quite easy to get the tubing straight.

Overall its finally coming together but need to wait for the new Swiftech SKF cpu block to arrive to do the final mockup.
1531511714238.JPEG 1531511732858.JPEG 1531587041936.JPEG
 
Last edited:

crazyeyesreaper

Chief Broken Rig
Staff member
Joined
Mar 25, 2009
Messages
9,077 (2.57/day)
Likes
3,962
Location
04578
#7
final layout done, needs to be tweaked and cleaned up a bit but generally this should be just about right.

Now if anyone has any ideas on how to sleeve and or hide the QDC fittings to some extent I am all ears. I have looked around but haven't found sleeving in the right size.
1531587041936.JPEG
 
Last edited:
Joined
Mar 18, 2015
Messages
1,156 (0.86/day)
Likes
680
Location
Long Island
#8
First think I do is buy the case after being pretty sure that all items will fit. Them I make mockups... for example, using a weak old card, I rubberband a piece of cardboard to the PCB and check to see hiw GFX card(s) fit. Having good measuring tools is a must. Then I make this:

https://www.overclock.net/forum/attachment.php?attachmentid=17784&d=1383265832

If you want to see more picks of the subsystem assembled (under rad drain w? QD , fill ports, etc ... will find here in this thread.

https://www.overclock.net/forum/161...ase-phanteks-case-club-lovers-owners-100.html

To obtain formula on how to size that radiators ..

https://www.overclock.net/forum/61-water-cooling/1457426-radiator-size-estimator.html

See a ton or misleading info on water cooling here as well as many other forums. When you have multiple water blocks, you can use th aboive perty reliably ... the 60% factor is based upon the fact that block sizes matter ... a GPU water block is much more efficient and removing heat than a CPU block is simply because of heat load per area. For just a CPU load, it's going to be a bit higher. but sill, the biggest error most people make if that your MoBo, Radiator shroud, tubing and every wet component is also radiating heat ... so the fans and the radiator fins are not handling a significant portion of the load.

So for a 360 rad... you are looking at 175 - 180 watts @ 1,000 rpm / 215 - 225 watts for 1250 rpm and 235 - 250 watts for 1400 rpm with a delta T of 10C

Your load however will top out at 125 - 135 watts with an overclocked CPU. Let's say we assume 80% of that gets taken care of by the fins .. heck let's ignore all that and use 100%. At 135 watt load and 1400 rpm, your delta T will be 5.4 C ... well below the 10C threshold for a hi-end water cooling system. S the choice of 1500 rpm fans is one I'd suggest taking a look at as best speed control technology can provide will bottom out around 375 - 450 rpm and even at 1000 rpm, you have way more sped than you could ever need. I expect fan speeds, if temp controlled will top out at about 650 understress testing

The most common misinformation put forth is that water cooling is just as load as air cooling... and that is simply wrong either way you go from there. If we talking CLCs ... I have yet to see a CLC that can match a quality air cooler's thermal performance (say anything from the Scythe Mugen Max @ $37) or the Noctua DH-15 @ $90) without being louder. The D15 beats the H100i thermally but is almost 12 times louder to get that close due to its extreme speed fans. When you go custom ... sure if you undersize your radiators ... say CPU and 250 watt GFX card / Mobo block on a 120 or 240 rad, yes you are going to hear it. But if you size the rads for 10C with max load under stress test at 1250 rpm ... you will never break 850 rpm while gaming.

The systems here are all using 1250 rm fans and they never break 800 or so rpm under stress testing ... the bottom out at about 300 - 325 rpm. They are dead silent and you cant tell the system is on with your ears. Right now just using the web and witha game running (toon is just standing there), pump is at half speed, rad fans are at 544 and case fans at 450 rpm.... Im using 4 speec control curves 1) Pump 2) 420mm rad 3) 280mm rad and 4) case fans ... if curve calls for less than 350, the fans shut off.

Looking towards the future, were you to add a water block for a 250 watt GFX card and MoBo Block overlcocked... you calculated wattage would be 415 resulting in a radiator fin load of about 250 watts, You'd get that at 1250 rpm with a 10C delta T . In short, I'd consider dropping the fan speeds to give you more low speed control; the SW3's bottom out at just above 500 rpm.... something in the 850 - 1250 rpm range would be more than enough for just CPU cooling
 

crazyeyesreaper

Chief Broken Rig
Staff member
Joined
Mar 25, 2009
Messages
9,077 (2.57/day)
Likes
3,962
Location
04578
#9
Not exactly a noob here i know the basics mostly the noob part is doing something unnecessary and stupid for no other reason than I can.

That said, I had a rough idea of exactly what I needed as for heat dissipation no GPU block will be added in the future. Watercooling a GPU when you swap cards every generation just doesn't make sense. Nice to look at but otherwise meaningless. Hell even the 360 mm radiator was picked due to its size more than anything else as it covers up the 2.5" SSDs.

The chassis was chosen due to its versatility I use the same chassis as a test bench and for my main system due to extra parts and swap ability including motherboards etc and an OS drive can just be swapped back and forth in regards to trouble shooting. a

Fans were selected based on overall CFM through radiator performance in which case the SW 3 offers one of the best CFM to dBA ratios available.

Otherwise this is a foolhardy fun project to see what can be done with regular tubing to get a hard tubing like design from the good ol cheap and easy floppy stuff. I digress I appreciate the tenacity of self promotions but keep in mind I review this hardware and with that comes a minor understanding of heat dissipation characteristics.

That said the average guy stumbling into this thread will likely appreciate the possible pitfalls and issues that arise that they may also be facing. Most people dive right in. I essentially did the same to see "what would happen if" Cheap and easy solutions what kind of fittings would be needed to make it doable, just how expensive is it to get a hard tubing like setup without the hard tubing etc etc etc. Answering questions no one wants to know or cares to know the answer too because I have literally nothing better to do on a saturday night.
 

HammerON

The Watchful Moderator
Staff member
Joined
Mar 2, 2009
Messages
7,781 (2.19/day)
Likes
5,293
Location
Up North
System Name Cruncher / Cruncher 2
Processor i9 7980XE / E5 2683 v3
Motherboard ASUS ROG STRIX X299 XE / ASRock X99 Extreme4/3.1
Cooling EK RGB Monoblock / EK Supremacy
Memory G.Skill Trident Z 32 GB 3200 / G.Skill Trident Z 32 GB
Video Card(s) EVGA 980 Ti Classified / Old ATI card
Storage Samsung 960 Pro 512 GB + Mushkin Reactor 1 TB / OCZ Vertex 4 256 GB
Display(s) Dell UltraSharp U3011 30"
Case TT Core V51 / Rosewell
Audio Device(s) On-board
Power Supply Corsair AX1200 / Thermaltake 550
Software Ubuntu 18.04 / Ubuntu 16.04
Benchmark Scores Always changing~
#10
Sub'd to see final results:)
 

crazyeyesreaper

Chief Broken Rig
Staff member
Joined
Mar 25, 2009
Messages
9,077 (2.57/day)
Likes
3,962
Location
04578
#11
Decisions Decisions, Do I sleeve it or leave it be? Black? or Black and Red? Picked up a few sizes for cheap 5/8 3/4 in red / black and 1 inch in black. Obviously if i sleeve it I will pick up 5/8 for a snug fit and cleaner look.

scv_1532037015536193657665.jpg scv_15320419531971854238694.jpg scv_15320432436416490267.jpg
 

HammerON

The Watchful Moderator
Staff member
Joined
Mar 2, 2009
Messages
7,781 (2.19/day)
Likes
5,293
Location
Up North
System Name Cruncher / Cruncher 2
Processor i9 7980XE / E5 2683 v3
Motherboard ASUS ROG STRIX X299 XE / ASRock X99 Extreme4/3.1
Cooling EK RGB Monoblock / EK Supremacy
Memory G.Skill Trident Z 32 GB 3200 / G.Skill Trident Z 32 GB
Video Card(s) EVGA 980 Ti Classified / Old ATI card
Storage Samsung 960 Pro 512 GB + Mushkin Reactor 1 TB / OCZ Vertex 4 256 GB
Display(s) Dell UltraSharp U3011 30"
Case TT Core V51 / Rosewell
Audio Device(s) On-board
Power Supply Corsair AX1200 / Thermaltake 550
Software Ubuntu 18.04 / Ubuntu 16.04
Benchmark Scores Always changing~
#12
Sleeve it red and black!
 
Joined
Oct 22, 2014
Messages
6,528 (4.38/day)
Likes
3,883
Location
Sunshine Coast
System Name Black Box
Processor Intel Xeon E5-2680 10c/20t 2.8GHz @ 3.0GHz
Motherboard Asrock X79 Extreme 11
Cooling Coolermaster 240 RGB A.I.O.
Memory G. Skill 16Gb (4x4Gb) 2133Mhz
Video Card(s) Nvidia GTX 710
Storage Sandisk X 400 256Gb
Display(s) AOC 22" Freesync 1m.s. 75Hz
Case Corsair 450D High Air Flow.
Audio Device(s) No need.
Power Supply FSP Aurum 650W
Software W10 Home Premium 64 bit
#13
Instead of those horrendous plastic disconnect couplings, is it possible to use G1/4 quick connect pneumatic fittings?
To me they would look better and can be screwed directly in the pump or radiator as required.
 

crazyeyesreaper

Chief Broken Rig
Staff member
Joined
Mar 25, 2009
Messages
9,077 (2.57/day)
Likes
3,962
Location
04578
#14
EK Quick Disconnect fittings are what I have on hand they also don't seem to spill any fluid at all. I have contemplated painting them black but its a soft touch rubber like material so not sure what would work best. Sleeving is simple and easily hides the QDC fittings entirely. That said going with Koolance fittings is possible but thats another $60+.
 
Last edited:

crazyeyesreaper

Chief Broken Rig
Staff member
Joined
Mar 25, 2009
Messages
9,077 (2.57/day)
Likes
3,962
Location
04578
#16
Yeah EK was nice enough to provide me with the fittings. I liked the finish and they had the largest assortment of extra fittings and extenders making this process a lot easier. But yeah the QDC fittings are a bit meh where they are plastic.
 

sneekypeet

Super Moderator
Staff member
Joined
Apr 12, 2006
Messages
25,672 (5.57/day)
Likes
10,790
System Name His
Processor Intel i9 7920X
Motherboard Asus Prime X299 Deluxe
Cooling Corsair H150i PRO RGB
Memory G.Skill TridentZ RGB 32GB @ 3600MHz
Video Card(s) nVidia GTX 1080ti SLI with EVGA Hybrid coolers.
Storage Samsung 960 Pro / Crucial MX300 750GB / Seagate 1TB Spinner
Display(s) Sony 43" 4K 60hz
Case Cooler Master Cosmos C700P (Inverted Layout)
Audio Device(s) Realtek on board > Sony Receiver > Cerwin Vega's
Power Supply Thermaltake TPSG 1050W
Mouse Always Changing
Keyboard Always Changing
Software Windows 10 Pro 64
#17
Get ahold of swiftech. ;)
 

crazyeyesreaper

Chief Broken Rig
Staff member
Joined
Mar 25, 2009
Messages
9,077 (2.57/day)
Likes
3,962
Location
04578
#18
Alright so i have been experimenting with the sleeving and it just doesn't work as well as I would like. In a simpler build it would be fantastic however currently due to the complexity and number of fittings in this build it just doesn't work. So to make things easier I will likely sleeve the old Swiftech H220x2 Prestige to get some use out of the sleeving and call it a day.
 

HammerON

The Watchful Moderator
Staff member
Joined
Mar 2, 2009
Messages
7,781 (2.19/day)
Likes
5,293
Location
Up North
System Name Cruncher / Cruncher 2
Processor i9 7980XE / E5 2683 v3
Motherboard ASUS ROG STRIX X299 XE / ASRock X99 Extreme4/3.1
Cooling EK RGB Monoblock / EK Supremacy
Memory G.Skill Trident Z 32 GB 3200 / G.Skill Trident Z 32 GB
Video Card(s) EVGA 980 Ti Classified / Old ATI card
Storage Samsung 960 Pro 512 GB + Mushkin Reactor 1 TB / OCZ Vertex 4 256 GB
Display(s) Dell UltraSharp U3011 30"
Case TT Core V51 / Rosewell
Audio Device(s) On-board
Power Supply Corsair AX1200 / Thermaltake 550
Software Ubuntu 18.04 / Ubuntu 16.04
Benchmark Scores Always changing~
#19
Sounds like a good plan! I have actually never attempted to sleeve before.
 
Joined
Jan 27, 2008
Messages
456 (0.12/day)
Likes
784
Location
The Lowcountry
System Name Daily Driver / Cruncher 1 / Cruncher 2 / Re-TIRED Cruncher / Cruncher 3
Processor R7-2700x / 2x Xeon X5675 / R7-1700x / Xeon E5-1650 / R5-1600
Motherboard ASRock Taichi x470 / Supermicro X8DAL / Aorus Gaming 5 x370 / RIVE Black / ASRock x370 Gaming ITX
Cooling EK monoblock / 2x Raijintek Aidos / Scythe Mugen 5 / Custom Water 2x 480 Rads / AMD Wraith Prism
Memory G.Skill 16GB 3466c14 / Kingston 24GB DDR3 / Team Group 16GB DDR4 / Crucial 32GB DDR3 / Crucial 8GB
Video Card(s) GTX 1080 / GT 710 / AMD R5 240 / TITAN / R5 240
Storage WD BLACK 500GB SSD / WD VR 300GB / WD VR 300GB / 840 EVO 1TB / WD VR 600GB
Display(s) LG 27EA83R / TeamViewer
Case Dimastech Easy V3 / Cooler Master 690 / Fractal R5 / Corsair 900D / Custom Bench
Audio Device(s) HT E-Claro -> Yamaha Receiver - Polk CS1, 2x Polk OWM3 or DT-990 Pro
Power Supply SeaSonic X-850 / SeaSonic X-1050 / SeaSonic Focus+ 650 Plat / EVGA G2 1300 / XFX XTR-550
Mouse Mionix NAOS 7000 / TeamViewer
Keyboard Drevo GRAMR tkl / TeamViewer
Software Win10 Pro / Linux / Linux / Win10 Pro / Linux & Win10 Pro
#20
I really like the way that sleeving looks on the Swiftech :pimp:

Not sure what I am going to do with this unit? Maybe do a give away of sorts.
Sounds like a great idea.
 
Joined
Feb 4, 2014
Messages
38 (0.02/day)
Likes
30
Location
Oz down under
System Name K9
Processor i7 7700K @ 5.1Ghz and 32deg C
Motherboard Gigabyte Aorus Z270X Gaming 9
Cooling Custom water cooling loop - VGA + mobo + CPU
Memory G Skill - Trident Z RGB DDR4 - 3866Mhz x 32Gb @ 3800Mhz
Video Card(s) Gigabyte Aorus 11Gb GTX 1080 Ti Waterforce Extreme
Storage Samsung 500Gb M2 970 EVO + Samsung 850 Pro SSD + ADATA 512Gb SSD + Samsung 1Tb +WD 1Tb + WD 3Tb
Display(s) ASUS 27" ROG Swift 1440p @ 165Hz & Samsung 27" LED
Case Thermaltake Core P5 - Open frame
Audio Device(s) 7.2 ch on board
Power Supply Corsair 1200W
Mouse Roccat LeadR
Keyboard Logitech bluetooth MX5500
Software Win 10 Pro 64bit
Benchmark Scores v/fast
#21
final layout done, needs to be tweaked and cleaned up a bit but generally this should be just about right.

Now if anyone has any ideas on how to sleeve and or hide the QDC fittings to some extent I am all ears. I have looked around but haven't found sleeving in the right size.
View attachment 103905
hi m8,

This was my recent effort = I changed the orientation of the main case by rotating it 180 deg so the cpu tubing was at the bottom.
my pc build_1.jpg


my pc build_2.jpg

regards
 

crazyeyesreaper

Chief Broken Rig
Staff member
Joined
Mar 25, 2009
Messages
9,077 (2.57/day)
Likes
3,962
Location
04578
#22
Finally got around to painting the brackets,

Headed down to the local NAPA auto parts picked up some self etching primer and some flat black. Went ahead and painted the swiftech brackets and the ones I had custom made so they match. Flat black finish also blends in better with the Radiators finish tying everything together a bit better.

38121012_10217848291618583_7948993237983690752_n.jpg 38193483_10217848289298525_6426339044203954176_n.jpg 38133431_10217848288578507_7853926954385276928_n.jpg
 

crazyeyesreaper

Chief Broken Rig
Staff member
Joined
Mar 25, 2009
Messages
9,077 (2.57/day)
Likes
3,962
Location
04578
#23
Loop is stress testing and leak testing now.

So far i got it optimized to stay below 45 dBA (currently at 43 dBA) and with only two be quiet fans I am seeing 88 C under AIDA64 FPU load at 4.8 GHz 1.3 Volts on the 8700k. Putting that into perspective the EK Phoenix MLC 360 offers 85C at 51 dBA. So not bad I expect a 1C drop from the third fan while remaining around 43 dBA. With side panel on should come in around 41 dBA giving me enough room to up the fan RPM and likely get down to around 86 C worst case load temps. Will know for sure soon enough.

1534877555973.JPEG
 
Joined
Oct 28, 2007
Messages
690 (0.17/day)
Likes
176
System Name Pegasus
Processor AMD Ryzen Threadripper 1950X @ 4GHz
Motherboard ASUS ROG Zenith Extreme
Cooling Custom 480mm EK Loop
Memory 4 x 8GB G.Skill TridentZ RGB 3000MHz @ 3000MHz
Video Card(s) ASUS ROG Nvidia GTX 1080 Ti
Storage Samsung 960 EVO M.2 500GB / Samsung 850 EVO 500GB / Samsung 840 EVO 250GB
Display(s) 2 x 25" Dell Ultrasharp U2515H / 1 x 15" ASUS MB169+
Case Corsair 900D
Audio Device(s) 2 x Tannoy Reveal 502 / Beyerdynamic DT 990 PRO 250 Ohm / Behringer Xenyx X1204 USB / MXL 770
Power Supply EVGA SuperNova G3 1000W
Mouse Logitech G903 Lightspeed
Keyboard HyperX Alloy FPS / Corsair K95 RGB
Software Windows 10 Professional 64-Bit
#24
Is there any particular reason you used EK-QDC instead of just running longer pipes? I don't seem to see it mentioned along the thread but I might have missed it.
 

crazyeyesreaper

Chief Broken Rig
Staff member
Joined
Mar 25, 2009
Messages
9,077 (2.57/day)
Likes
3,962
Location
04578
#25
Ease of disassembly / coolant change / Maintenance

I can essentially push two buttons isolating the CPU block and the radiator / res / pump. No coolant spilling no need to drain it just to take it off or swap a part.
 
Top